It's all their fault. But what can we do about it!
April 1, 2010 1:36 AM   Subscribe

After possibly inspiring Nathan Barley with his Shoreditch Tw*t magazine, editing a semi-iconic lifestyle mag and then burning all his worldly branded goods, Neil Boorman has turned his brain to Baby Boomers and their relation to the current woes of the world. There's a website too...
posted by debord (17 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Love it
posted by criticalbill at 1:57 AM on April 1, 2010

I don't understand - I'm 45 years old. Am I an Evile Boomer or a member of the oppressed Other Ages?

He seems to be unsure whether he's Nathan Barley, Jonathan Yeah? or Dan Ashcroft, though he obviously wants to be Dan Ashcroft lots.
posted by Grangousier at 2:40 AM on April 1, 2010

I liked Barley better when he wasn't a real person.
posted by turgid dahlia at 3:13 AM on April 1, 2010

I liked the Shoreditch twat TV programme. Visiting a friend in the media business in London at the time we went out in Shoreditch, and it is all true!
posted by asok at 3:20 AM on April 1, 2010

He seems to be complaining that they are going to retire, rather then work until they drop?
The enormous financial debt we’ve been handed is from their overspending. Everything about today’s self-obsessed modern culture (record rates of divorce, suicide and drug addiction) comes from their megalomania. And the environmental crisis, dangerously close to the point of no return, is a hangover from their overconsumption. None of this is news to our parents though. The alarm bells have been ringing for decades, but they’re world leaders at burying their heads in the sand.

Greedy? Selfish? Mummy and Daddy? It can’t possibly be true? Here is what well-respected thinkers from across the political spectrum have to say:

‘Twentysomethings will be lumbered with higher levels of taxation in the future to pay for the longer and better retirements of the ageing baby-boomer generation … that’s not fair,’ says Ryan Shorthouse of The Guardian.
Sounds like teabagger.
posted by delmoi at 3:53 AM on April 1, 2010

As I've said before: A generation bought up on zombie games and horror films that give permission to kill people with sagging decrepit flesh and stiff aging gait, and pumped up with a sense of grievance based on an unfair distribution of wealth, will eventually find a way to perpetrate a kind of holocaust on their grandparents generation. How this will be accomplished has not yet become clear. It could be accomplished passively by neglect, or straightforwardly by using the elderly for target practice. Sadism may use convenience as an excuse, and a generation brought up on "punked" will find it hilarious terrify the aged to or near death and post the videos on whatever replaces YouTube five years from now; or they will think of clever and funny ways to kill these helpless, ugly, smelly weak old creatures, to watch them crawl helplessly across the floor (remember how funny that "I can't get up" advertisement was a decade or so ago?). A generation that believes it has been unfairly deprived of it rightful wealth by the needs of the elderly will find or create a legal way to deprive the elderly of their money, and then, out of guilt, find a legal way to dispose of those elderly. Liberal boomers might actually sympathize with their young antagonists, and, filled with guilt (and urged to do so by young propogandists), begin killing themselves with the same lemming-like collective instinct that made them all converge on the muddy fecal fields of Woodstock. Today's Blame-the-Boomers jokes are half tongue-in-cheek. But they are preparing the "moral" ground for what will eventually be a generational cleansing.
posted by Faze at 3:55 AM on April 1, 2010

What a fucking cretin. Yes, let's blame an entire age group of ordinary citizens who took their governments at their word and made the economic decisions they were encouraged to do by all the mainstream pundits, economic projections, tax incentives and policies of the day.
In the UK, members of that generation engaged in some of the most militant pro-social-justice politics of the post-war era, the response to which was half-arsed coup attempts by the secret state then the vicious backlash of the monetarist assault under Thatcher.
This dilettante bell-end has breezed from one farcical non-contribution to the next; now his intervention in politics is going to be an unpleasant distraction from any sensible analysis of what happened and how we got where we are, washed down with the demographic lies of the neo-liberal think-tanks swallowed whole, so he's carrying water for further attacks on what's left of our hard-won social security.
posted by Abiezer at 3:59 AM on April 1, 2010 [2 favorites]

Boorman does seem to be behaving like his normal idiotic self and getting all twatty about it, and doesn't recognise the fact that he'd make exactly the same economic choices that they did.

For a much more insightful analysis, read The Pinch, by David Willetts. He doesn't condemn the boomers, but offers an explanation of their economic clout and how it affects those of us in the generation following them. I'm literally on the last few pages of it right now.
posted by dowcrag at 5:09 AM on April 1, 2010

Before Nathan Barley had his own show, the TV listings for it could be found in Charlie Brooker's TV Go Home (nsfw).
posted by nofunnyname at 5:09 AM on April 1, 2010 [2 favorites]

... and what Willetts places at the centre of his analysis is that the social contract is an intergenerational one, and it's these intergenerational ties that have been weakened. A large part of the solution is to strengthen these ties once more and think about their real meaning for each generation.

Whereas Boorman is all 'let's kick them out and help our generation to take control', which is essentially making his solution - a generation acting in their own interests - exactly the same as what he's touting as the cause of the problem. Which exposes his manifesto as the half-baked load of cock that it is.
posted by dowcrag at 5:23 AM on April 1, 2010

I've met Neil a few times in a friend of a friend capacity and he's a good bloke. He seemed far more interested in the idea of debate & exchange of views although he's more than happy to take the approach of dropping a grenade & sifting through the wreckage afterwards ;-) He always enjoys the abuse I think.
posted by i_cola at 5:38 AM on April 1, 2010

Dan Ashcrooooooft!
posted by I-baLL at 6:20 AM on April 1, 2010 [1 favorite]

While I'm not happy about the way he's presenting this message, I think he does have his finger on the zeitgeist. It seems like I've seen a lot of articles recently about how differently Gen Xers (or whatever you want to call the children of the boomers) are raising their children. The very idea of latch-key kids is considered absurd among a lot of parents.
posted by nushustu at 8:01 AM on April 1, 2010

Really? And how are Gen-Xers raising their kids (if they even have them instead of like two yorkies or a great dane)? Because from where I stand as a GenX-er...only people with a certain level of privilege, education and resources end up falling into these retarded over-generalized categories. There are lot more people out there born in the early 70s than a bunch of rich, white people.

Also the latch-key kids concept - which is more absurd? Latch key kids or kids dumped off in day care so mommy and daddy can both work their prestigious jobs so they can buy the same consumer based identity shit their parents did? Where's the difference between them and their parents?
posted by spicynuts at 8:29 AM on April 1, 2010

Some of the problems he points out are real. To take a couple of examples: house prices in London are very high - it is exceedingly difficult to get on the property ladder, even with the recession, unless you have at least one and, for preference, two high incomes. (I am not sure what the situation is like elsewhere in the UK).

Also, the tendency for MPs who benefited from free education to impose university fees on the next generation down seems pretty hypocritical.

Plus, I can't be the only member of my age bracket who long ago sickened of newspaper and magazine articles painting people my age as entitled, slothful or otherwise dangerous - whilst glamorising the 60s.

I'm not sure that attacking an entire generation of people is the answer to these problems, and I'm not sure that anyone younger would have acted differently had they been born into the "baby boom". Still, his comments rang a few bells for me, at least, so I couldn't dismiss him entirely.
posted by lucien_reeve at 8:35 AM on April 1, 2010

Okay, this is a derail, plain and simple, but why does Zynga's Scramble 2 for the iPhone/iPod Touch not consider "cunt" an English word, but it does consider "twat" to be? I mean, what's the logic in that?
posted by Mental Wimp at 10:11 AM on April 1, 2010

spicynuts: I've read your comment three times now, but I'm not sure what you're saying. Are you saying that people not wanting their kids left at home alone is an over-generalized category?

Also, are you suggesting that leaving little kids at home alone is better than leaving them in day care?

(I should point out here that I don't like the idea of latch key kids or day care, and that my original comment didn't pass judgment on anything. I just noted that it seemed in my limited experience that there is an uptick in contemporary parents not wanting to leave their children unattended in contrast to the whole latch-key kid phenomenon of the 80s.)

However, you're right on the money concerning Gen Xers having more dogs than kids. And that's maybe so they can not spend money on kids now, but when the Gen Xers are retiring they're going to have the same problem the boomers do.

While the links in the OP might not handle this as well as it could, there is a serious problem coming, in that there are way way more people retiring and expecting benefits than there are people working to pay into those benefits. The boomers didn't have to deal with the generation before them being so much larger that they had to pay absurd amounts of taxes toward social security. Gen X and the Y or whatever aren't so lucky.
posted by nushustu at 11:37 AM on April 1, 2010

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