Category Archive 'Demographics'
05 Sep 2017

So, There!

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Some wiseass millennial posted this one.

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And a conservative representative of my generation responded.

HT: Vanderleun.

06 Apr 2017

Seven Living Generations

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05 Apr 2016

Generations

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Generations

30 Aug 2015

European Suicide

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ShariaFrance

The Muslim Issue quotes a Swedish review of Hungarian 2002 Nobel Prize for Literature winner Imre Kertesz’s new book (not yet available in English):

“Europe will soon go under because of its former liberalism that has proved childish and suicidal. Europe has produced Hitler, and after Hitler the continent stands there with no arguments: the doors are wide open for Islam, they no longer dare talk about race and religion while Islam only knows the language of hatred against alien races and religions,” writes Kertész in his book. …

“I should say a few words about politics too … Then I would talk about how Muslims are flooding, occupying, in clear verbs, destroying Europe, and how Europe relates to this, the suicidal liberalism and the stupid democracy … It always ends the same way: civilization reaches a certain stage of maturation where it is not only able to defend itself, but where it is in a seemingly incomprehensible worship of their own enemy.”

ImreKertesz
Imre Kertesz

10 Jun 2015

Some Good News And Some Bad News

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Die-Hipster

David Infante has some good news and some bad news. The good news is that the Hipster is dead. The bad news is that he has been replaced by another intensely annoying type of millennial wussy, what he refers to as “the “Yuccie” (pronounced “Yucky”), i.e., young urban creatives.

[T]he hipster has to be dead, killed by a contradicted identity. When everyone is rejecting the mainstream, no one is. When everyone is a hipster, no one is a hipster. Hell, saying “the hipster is dead” is, itself, pretty much dead, a late-aughts victim of thinkpiecery and primetime cable namechecks.

And anyway, “hipster” doesn’t line up culturally with who yuccies are. To use myself as an example again: I have no tattoos. My credit is good. Hell, I’ve got dental insurance. My basic, unwaxed mustache, like the rest of me, wouldn’t have rated in the heady days of hipsterism. Hipsters themselves might have scorned me as a yuppie. But that isn’t right, either. “Yuppie” conjures Sharper Image catalogs, clean condos and piles of new money pulled from the pre-recession stock market. It doesn’t capture the sense of creative entitlement that defines the yuccie.

Yuccies are the cultural offspring of yuppies and hipsters. We’re intent on being successful like yuppies and creative like hipsters. We define ourselves by our purchases, just like both cohorts, sure. But not by price or taste level; we identify by price and taste level: $80 sweatpants, $16 six-packs of craft beer, trips to Charleston, Austin and Portland. How much it costs (high or low) is immaterial if the material bought validates our intellect.

We’re a big part of the reason that 43% of every millennial food dollar is spent in restaurants, instead of at home. After all, what product is more fraught with the politics of money and creativity than dinner? It’s gotta be Instagrammed.

You cross the yuppie’s new money thirst for yachts and recognition with the hipster’s anti-ambition, smoke-laced individualism, sprinkle on a dose of millennial entitlement, and the yuccie is what you get.
We are what we hate

The Young Urban Creative. The yuccie. As far as trend-naming goes, this is on the punnier edge of the spectrum. Yuccies are yucky. Why?

Let’s use me as an example again. Almost by definition, yuccies possess enormous privilege. My professional drift towards a creative field (writing) is an implicit statement of privilege. Being a yuccie is synonymous with the sort of self-centered cynicism that can only exist in the absence of hardship. It’s the convenience of being unburdened by conviction; it’s the luxury of getting to pick your battles. In this context, cynicism is maybe the yuccie’s most defining trait.

To wit, of all the reasons I enjoy being a writer, the single driving force behind my career trajectory has been validation. I write for validation: of my peers, of my parents, of the followers who retweet me, even of the commenters who say cruel things in my general direction beneath every piece I’ve ever published.

Don’t get me wrong — I need the money, too, as much as any of my peers. But if I hadn’t insisted on majoring in English, writing professionally and “expressing myself,” I probably could have chosen a more lucrative path. But
I need to be told, repeatedly and at length, that I have valuable ideas. That my talent is singular. That I’m making a dent, the size and location of which is less important than fact that it’s shaped like me.

That’s the cynicism of privilege. That’s what yuccieism is. I’m not ashamed of it, and you shouldn’t be either if this sounds like you. But I’m not proud of it either. Like I said — it’s a bit yucky.

Read the whole thing.

30 Dec 2014

Democrat Strategist: We Don’t Need the White Working Class

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Romney-Miners
Barack Obama did not need white coal miners’ votes to win in 2012.

Paul Waldman argues that democrats can win presidential elections via the gentry/welfare minorities/hipsters alliance. They may not get most white working class votes, but they only need to pick up a small percentage of those and they win.

Few questions in American political debate recur with the regularity of this one: Can Democrats win the white working class?

As soon as it’s time to start contemplating the next election, commentators begin to ask this question, demanding of Democrats that they explain why this time will be different and they’ll be able to win over those white voters. I’m going to argue that Democrats don’t have to win the white working class, so they shouldn’t worry themselves too much about it. …

here’s the good news for Clinton: It doesn’t matter. She doesn’t need to win the white vote, working-class or otherwise, in order to become president. The last time a Democratic presidential candidate won a majority of the white vote was 1964. Yet they’ve managed to win five elections since then.

We spend so much time contemplating what different demographic groups find appealing and repellent that it’s almost as though we forget that a vote is a vote. For instance, Democrats are often scolded for their unpopularity among voters in rural areas and small towns, because of a mythos that says those are the most virtuous and true Americans and therefore their votes are somehow more desirable than those of people who live in suburbs and cities. But they aren’t. The vote of a tattooed 20-something hipster in Des Moines is no less helpful than that of the 60-something farmer who lives a hundred miles north.

Demographics, of course, are obviously important. For instance, Republicans’ struggles with Hispanic voters are meaningful because they’ve managed to alienate all of those voters at once, and that has ended up costing them millions of votes. But is there something Hillary Clinton (or some other Democrat) could do that would cause huge numbers of working-class white voters to vote differently than they had before? Probably not. The plain truth is that she’s likely to get more of their votes than Barack Obama did just because she’s white (though not so many more that it will make her unbeatable). But there isn’t some magical key to unlocking the votes of that entire demographic category that can be found and deployed.

What Democrats need to do is offer an agenda, particularly on the economy, that appeals to a broad spectrum of Americans. That’s both simple and complicated. But if and when they put that agenda together, lots of white working class voters still won’t respond, because they’re Republicans. And that’s okay. Democrats don’t need them all. What they need is about the same proportion of those votes that they got in the last couple of presidential elections. More would be nice, but the same amount would work fine. Because you may remember who won those elections.

Read the whole thing.

22 Oct 2014

Turning 60

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Turning60

28 Sep 2014

Generation Wuss

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Millenials1

When a male member of Generation X who has a boyfriend thinks your generation is weak, over-sensitive and generally lame, things are pretty bad.

I am looking at Millenials from the POV of a member of one of the most pessimistic and ironic generations that has ever roamed the earth—Generation X—so when I hear Millenials being so damaged by “cyber-bullying” that it becomes a gateway to suicide—it’s difficult for me to process. And even my boyfriend agrees that Generation Wuss is overly sensitive, especially when dealing with criticism. When Generation Wuss creates something they have so many outlets to display it that it often goes out into the world unfettered, unedited, posted everywhere, and because of this freedom a lot of the content displayed is rushed and kind of shitty and that’s OK—it’s just the nature of the world now—but when Millennials are criticized for this content they seem to collapse into a shame spiral and the person criticizing them is automatically labeled a hater, a contrarian, a troll. And then you have to look at the generation that raised them, that coddled them in praise—gold medals for everyone, four stars for just showing up—and tried to shield them from the dark side of life, and in turn created a generation that appears to be super confident and positive about things but when the least bit of darkness enters into their realm they become paralyzed and unable to process it.

Read the whole thing.

03 Dec 2012

American Birthrate Plummets

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Thomas Couture, Les Romains de la décadence [Romans in the Period of Decadence], 1847, Musée d’Orsay, Paris

And even Ross Douthat begins to recognize in the distance the final stop at end of the rail line of progressive modernism.

It’s a near-universal law that modernity reduces fertility. …

American fertility plunged with the stock market in 2008, and it hasn’t recovered. Last week, the Pew Research Center reported that U.S. birthrates hit the lowest rate ever recorded in 2011, with just 63 births per 1,000 women of childbearing age. (The rate was 71 per 1,000 in 1990.) For the first time in recent memory, Americans are having fewer babies than the French or British. …

Beneath… policy debates, though, lie cultural forces that no legislator can really hope to change. The retreat from child rearing is, at some level, a symptom of late-modern exhaustion — a decadence that first arose in the West but now haunts rich societies around the globe. It’s a spirit that privileges the present over the future, chooses stagnation over innovation, prefers what already exists over what might be. It embraces the comforts and pleasures of modernity, while shrugging off the basic sacrifices that built our civilization in the first place.

Read the whole thing.

16 Nov 2012

Demographics and Diversity

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Daniel Greenfield
, in another brilliant piece, explains that Diversity is not just a moral preference for the left.

The left’s utopias are not only economically unsustainable (what else is new) but also politically and demographically unsustainable. The economics can’t be fixed, but the politics and demographics can. As with all of the left’s solutions, they involve finding ways of making things much, much worse. And their answer to the demographic and political problem is immigration. Bring in young people from elsewhere who will have lots of kids and vote the straight slanted ticket. Preferably the kind who won’t get along with the locals and will be taught to constantly complain about racism, even though back where they’re from, racism was as accepted as daylight drug deals and beheadings.

Bring them in, run their kids through the same system, add a few holidays to the calendar, enjoy the new ethnic foods and hopefully teach their kids to stop having so many kids if they want to retire at 55 and fill their house with knickknacks from their vacations in Greece and Brazil. And then fill the new gap with more immigrants. It’s a plan that makes as much economic sense as the European Union and is twice as sustainable. After all lots of people in the world want free health care and a passport from a country that won’t collapse into a murderous civil war when the price of bread goes through the minaret.

And if the assimilation program doesn’t work, well then you only have to bring in half as many immigrants next time around, because all those countries you brought those immigrants from are now in your own country. Saves on jet fuel and coast guards. Not to mention language lessons, though it usually turns out that you need them anyway because your excellent schools no longer seem to be doing such a good job of teaching your own language and what used to be your language is now an argot composed of the languages of your immigrants and bits of your own language processed into the fake street slang of rap stars. And before you know it, you’re using it too.

It’s a dead end. It’s Rome with the barbarians sorting through the loot. It’s China when the wall fell. It’s Byzantium when the Bedouin raiders poured through and began the centuries long process of tearing apart Middle Eastern Christianity, that Islam wrapped up. It’s the long fall of civilization into night with a bloody pension and a hell of a retirement plan lost somewhere in the middle of a pile of broken marble columns.

But it keeps the left alive. Without diversity, the left is a bunch of corpulent unions protecting their pensions while the young people look at brochures of London and Los Angeles and finish their fourth degree. Without it, the left eventually dries up, blows away in the wind and dies after running a few protests against austerity and then has to implement it anyway.

Diversity isn’t a moral principle. It’s oxygen for a dead movement. It’s the only way that the left can stay alive long enough to fulfill the accidental mission of every parasite by killing its host. It’s the numbers game and as long as the left can cobble together these coalitions built on the backs of immigrants and tied together with community associations and piles of free stuff, then it can go on squatting on a society, dipping its proboscis in the sweet nectar of wealth and power, and then when the nectar runs out, switching to sipping its blood.

Read the whole thing.

09 Aug 2012

Make-a-Baby-For-Singapore Day

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Sir Thomas Stamford Bingley Raffles (1781-1826) expects every Singaporean to do his duty.

WSJ:

Singaporeans are encouraged to show their patriotic fervor by displaying their country’s flag proudly, sharing snapshots of their favorite local foods and dancing along to a fresh new national theme song.

But there is another, distinctly unofficial, national song in Singapore these days. It is asking locals to try something else on their country’s big day: Make love for Singapore.

Mentos mints created an ad campaign to urge Singaporeans to increase the city-state’s birth rate, which is among the lowest in the world.

The soulful rap, which is part of a new ad campaign to promote Mentos mints, is called “National Night,” and it exhorts Singaporeans to “do their civic duty” to help solve the city-state’s low birthrate by making a baby on Aug. 9.

“It’s National Night, let’s make Singapore’s birthrate spike,” a female vocalist sings over jittery synthesizers and drumbeats, as her male counterpart shouts phrases like “that’s right” and “the birthrate won’t spike itself!”

“Singapore’s population, it needs some increasin’, so forget waving flags, August 9th we be freaking,” the rap continues.

The song has gone viral, taking on a life of its own on social networks across the famously staid city-state. It is also raising the eyebrows of older residents who fret that it is mocking a serious issue.

Singapore’s leaders have worried for years about the country’s birthrate, which is among the lowest in the world at 7.72 births per 1,000 people. …

My wife reminded me that not everybody is on Facebook, so here is a direct link to the 3:17 astonishing and appalling video.

And some people think that NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg is intrusive.

03 Jun 2012

Mark Steyn: “The Party’s Over”

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Anselm Kiefer, Abendland (Twilight of the West), 1989

Mark Steyn gloomily predicts that the attempts of politicians to deliver material comfort, cradle-to-the-grave security, and substantial life intervals of leisure to the masses are not compatible with economic reality.

In the twilight of the West, America and Europe are still different but only to this extent: They’ve wound up taking separate paths to the same destination. Whether you get there via an artificial common currency for an invented pseudo-jurisdiction or through quantitative easing and the global decline of the dollar, whether you spend your final years in the care of Medicare or the National Health Service death panels, whether higher education is just another stage of cradle-to-grave welfare or you have a trillion dollars’ worth of personal college debt, in 2012 the advanced Western social-democratic citizen looks pretty similar, whether viewed from Greece or Germany, California or Quebec.

That’s to say, the unsustainable “bubble” is not student debt or subprime mortgages or anything else. The bubble is us, and the assumptions of entitlement. Too many citizens of advanced Western democracies live a life they have not earned, and are not willing to earn. …

Look around you. The late-20th-century Western lifestyle isn’t going to be around much longer. In a few years’ time, our children will look at old TV commercials showing retirees dancing, golfing, cruising away their sixties and seventies, and wonder what alternative universe that came from. In turn, their children will be amazed to discover that in the early 21st century the Western world thought it entirely normal that vast swathes of the citizenry should while away their youth enjoying what, a mere hundred years earlier, would have been the leisurely varsity of the younger son of a Mitteleuropean Grand Duke.

As usual, Mark Steyn’s rhetoric is well worth the read, but I do not entirely agree.

I think it’s true that the dynamic of egalitarian democracy by its nature faces the fundamental danger of an ongoing benefits auction for the masses’ political support which will always in the end wind up devouring too great a portion of the economy resulting in disaster.

But I think myself, on the other hand, that, if government regulation and economic meddling were minimized and the burden of taxation was modest, economic growth could create and sustain an economically-independent and leisured middle class, much larger than the vanished one which existed in Britain and America before 1914. It’s just not possible to lift all the boats all at once.

I do strongly agree with Mark Steyn that our current model of near-universal college education, consisting of four years of leisure and good times combined with plenty of left-wing indoctrination, represents a simply astounding waste of human energy and talent.

Between useless high school and useless college, millions upon millions of people today fritter away what are actually their most healthy, energetic, and potentially productive years imbibing modest quantities of learning, having a good time, and being flattered into believing that are members of an omniscient elite charged with the revolutionary overthrow of a wicked and stupid past. It would be infinitely better all the way around if 90+% of everyone simply went to work at 13, as my parents’ generation generally did.

18 Feb 2012

Barry Antoinette

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Mark Steyn admires the statesmanship that, in a time when a nation is about to find itself with an insufficient working population to fund Social Security payments for all its retirees, prioritizes mandating the provision of contraception.

[T]he Baby Boomers did not have enough children to maintain mid-20th century social programs. As a result, the children they did have will end their lives in a poorer, uglier, sicker, more divided and more violent society.

How to avert this fate? In 2009 Nancy Pelosi called for free contraceptives as a form of economic stimulus.

Ten thousand Americans retire every day, and leave insufficient progeny to pick up the slack. In effect, Nancy has rolled a giant condom over the entire American economy.

Testifying before Congress, Timmy Geithner referred only to “demographic challenges” — an oblique allusion to the fact that the U.S. economy is about to be terminally clobbered by 100 trillion dollars of entitlement obligations it can never meet.

And, as Chart 5-1 on page 58 of the official Obama budget “Analytical Perspectives” makes plain, your feckless, decadent rulers have no plans to do anything about it.

Instead, the Democrats shriek, ooh, Republican prudes who can’t get any action want to shut down your sex life! According to CBO projections, by midcentury mere interest payments on the debt will exceed federal revenues.

For purposes of comparison, by 1788 Louis XVI’s government in France was spending a mere 60% of revenues on debt service, and we know how that worked out for His Majesty shortly thereafter.

Not to worry, says Barry Antoinette. Let them eat condoms.

This is a very curious priority for a dying republic. “Birth control” is accessible, indeed ubiquitous, and, by comparison with anything from a gallon of gas to basic cable, one of the cheapest expenses in the average budget. Not even Rick Santorum, that notorious scourge of the sexually liberated, wishes to restrain the individual right to contraception.

But where is the compelling societal interest in the state prioritizing and subsidizing it? Especially when you’re already the Brokest Nation in History. Elsewhere around the developed world, prudent politicians are advocating natalist policies designed to restock their empty maternity wards.

16 Oct 2011

Blaming the Boomers

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The baby boomers had everything – free education, free health care and remarkable personal liberties – but they squandered it all. Now their children are paying for it. —The New Statesman

Joseph Fouche first quotes Lex‘s reaction to the Occupy* protests:

My hatred of the Boomers, who have brainwashed and wasted these kids is boundless. There is nothing wrong with them. They have just never been taught anything but bullshit. They have been betrayed by their parents and their teachers. It is very depressing. The country has been shamefully dumbed down.

Reading all this with just a little partisan bias, I’d say that he then blames left-wing Baby Boomers for both the intellectual vacuity of their young epigones and for the country’s inability to reform its policies and effectively address the current crisis.

They say they want a revolution. To have a revolution, you must have a secular social catechism that accumulates the sort of strategic effects that will trigger a fatal split in our current set of societal elites. In the crisis so far, we’ve only seen dusty formulas trotted out by ancient and creaky Boomers yearning re-fight the glorious battles of youth.

Again.

And again.

Here’s an unintended side-effect of extended human lifespans: ideological stasis. To butcher Max Planck: a political notion does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it. Boomers, given unnaturally long biological life by historical developments they barely comprehend, give unnaturally long life to their foolishly destructive notions. Society may stagnate in some areas while progressing in others with unforeseen effects. This may make the process of sorting out of what’s needed to grapple with our current predicament prolonged, painful, and prone to triggering frustration and outbreaks of corrective violence.

Go tell the Boomers that, in the words of Oliver Cromwell and Leo Amery:

    You have sat too long here for any good you have been doing. Depart, I say, and let us have done with you. In the name of God, go!

So, drop dead, liberal Boomers!

Hat tip to Bird Dog.

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