"OK Boomer" comes to the NZ Parliament and makes all the right people angry

If you actually start interviewing people in any of the arbitrary age groups, you quickly find that their experience of the world differs much, much more than it agrees with other people put in that group. The variation within those groups is massive.

When you look at it closely, the whole meme of the different blocks of people falls apart; the span of time in each block is so great that their TV and music and political histories aren’t even the same. But you won’t find any journalist writing about how they profoundly don’t work - it’s too useful to editors to write articles about boomers or millenials or whatever, and too easy for people in the population to think of boomers or millenials or whatever, for them to print evidence that it’s all bullsh it.


Social classes based on economy and privilege are usually a better way of dividing things than ageism.

According to Robert Reich, 60% of the wealth in the United States is now inherited.

Gen Tessier-Ashpool?

There are also the new money TechBros, but almost always, new money votes old.


Hm, well maybe.
You seem to be ignoring the possibility of a mass extinction event.


Which is more or less irrelevant to my point, and in fact ignores the “is not and never was to interpret all individuals in the class a identical Lego blocks” bit.

Have a nice day.


I love how Millennials don’t get arithmetic.

(I kid! I kid. :wink: )

PS: Hope is good, and glad you are finding it again. Patience is a radical virtue.


Further down in my comment is my main point, which you ignore. And that is that the arbitrary beginning and ending dates of the groups are so far apart that members of the groups have different cultural experiences - their TV, music, political etc. experiences are completely different. There are lots of families where the parents and their children are ALL considered to be in the same age group - all boomers or all millennials or whatever. How is that useful?

Your claims about common experience in the different age groups fall apart when you look at the actual people in those arbitrary groups. All you’re referring to is who the media claim are “typical examples” of the groups - but they are not, in fact, typical. It’s all made up.

The fact that you too were fooled into accepting those fake definitions is not a good reason to defend them.

And yes, have a nice day.

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(Not sure if accurate, but I’d heard a long time back that Gen X started the minute Kennedy was shot.

I personally like this take because I can then count myself in that cohort: not relating to boomers at all, though having advanced one grade and not being born in the US probably color my perspective.)


I think it was the late sixties when I was retroactively drafted into the Boomers. They* kept moving the markers. Call me Generation Annexed.

 * whoever “they” are. People who wanted a tidy marketing demographic?


Alphabetic generation-labeling is lazy, part-smart thinking. Demographics is a Thing, but it’s not a simple Thing. It’s not completely unreasonable to observe that a population bloc might be affected by the conditions under which they grew up, but it is unreasonable to assume that everyone in that cohort experienced the same conditions. (It’s all a matter of distribution, innit.) So an American cohort that came of age during the Depression and WW2 (as my parents did) were certainly marked by that experience–though had they been comfortably upper-middle-class rather than blue-collar, that would have complicated any easy characterization of them. (I had college classmates from upper-middle-class families who were not FDR-admiring Democrats but what I call National Review conservatives. In 1962.) And had they been African-American, a whole other bundle of experiences would have been added.

Oh–I’m not a boomer but a war baby. My sister, born in 1947, is exactly a first-batch baby-boomer. (Do the math: end of WW2 + demobilization + 9 months.) And our attitudes are very close, because we grew up in that post-war environment in which blue-collar families could achieve the kind of stability and even prosperity that was not possible for many Depression-years families. And those attitudes were largely conditioned by Depression-years attitudes toward thrift, work, government involvement, and social justice (1930s variety) rather than “prosperity and associated consumerism and deregulation.”

I have lived in the university world all my adult life, so I’ve been able to observe young people of several “generations,” which makes me skeptical of easy characterizations. I started teaching when my students–only a few years younger than I was–were doing both sensible and stupid things to protest the Vietnam war. I’ve watched waves of social-justice enthusiasm and dollar-obsessed careerism wash through the student population. (Remember the 1980s?) I have always cringed at the variations on “if you’re not part of the solution you’re part of the problem” that seem to accompany (relatively) youthful idealism. Being “woke” is not a new thing.

And nearly halfway through my seventies, I’m just a bit tired of hearing about being part of the problem because of my membership in a demographic cohort (or a gender or race). No generation has a monopoly on being venal, selfish, stupid, or short-sighted.


We’re not going to be so lucky, not this generation. Maybe the next one.

Why I ought’da! And in my day…




Well, thats perfect than. You shouldn’t be getting worked up about it.

As a Boomer, I have to defend the continued use of the ‘OK Boomer’ meme to insult us. We carry on with our wasteful consumption, oblivious to all else, even in the face of climate change, economic ruin, plastic pollution, racism, immigrant mistreatment, and whatever else is going on in the world. Plenty of shit’s happened on our watch, and clearly we did not fight it hard enough.

Yes, when you’re cutting off a racist, it’s fine to be more specific. But OK Boomer can almost always be safely applied while remaining accurate.


I like how the billionaire oligarchs and other power elite that actually made the decisions about the shape of society, including mandating a political economy built around the internal combustion engine, and the defense of that structure against change, get replaced with a vague an nebulous “Boomers did it” while laughing all the way to the bank.

It’s fossil fuel and fossil feed-stock lobby dollars that orchestrated the climate catastrophe.

It’s rich power brokers that engineered the wealth disparity.

Not your grandma or uncle in the Boomer generation.



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Case in point: Mark Zuckerberg or Jack Dorsey, or there’s Richard Spencer, Marine le Pen, Milo Yiannopoulos, Alex Jones, Ben Shapiro, all those young people all over the world eagerly embracing and promoting far-right sentiments, and so on… hell, my country’s own Dear Leader, Orbán Viktor, who managed to turn a shaky but developing democracy into complete, corrupt autocracy in less than 4 years, is barely in the “boomer generation” having been born in 1963, and many in his party and business circle are far younger than him…


Boomers aren’t even the oldest generation around. There are still plenty of Silent Generation (1928-1945), and even a few GI (so-called “Greatest”; 1901-1927) generation alive. I mean, as a GenXer with Silent parents, I enjoy blaming Boomers as much as anyone, but I suspect the “Ok Boomer” meme was created by people who couldn’t imagine that anyone could still be alive and not be a Boomer or later.


I an a gen-X too. I have to say OK boomer too. Because I hope to be still alive in 2059.