Is there still hope for the Spoiled Generation?

But where’s my pony?

I recently wrote that, despite its appalling track record of misery, murder and oppression, socialism, not to say open communism, is still very much in vogue with millennials. Mostly, I wrote, this is because they have never been taught the true history of the horrors of socialism. But, as this thoughtful piece from Minnesotan Alyssa Ahlgren argues, the problem runs much deeper: hers is a generation who think they?re hard-done-by because they?ve never known anything but the prosperity of capitalist democracy. Quote:

I scroll through my newsfeed on my phone looking at the latest headlines of Democratic candidates calling for policies to ?fix? the so-called injustices of capitalism. I put my phone down and continue to look around. I see people talking freely, working on their MacBooks, ordering food they get in an instant, seeing cars go by outside, and it dawned on me. We live in the most privileged time in the most prosperous nation and we?ve become completely blind to it.

We are so well off here in the United States that our poverty line begins 31 times above the global average. Thirty. One. Times. Virtually no one in the United States is considered poor by global standards. Yet, in a time where we can order a product off Amazon with one click and have it at our doorstep the next day, we are unappreciative, unsatisfied, and ungrateful.

Our unappreciation is evident as the popularity of socialist policies among my generation continues to grow. Democratic Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez recently said to Newsweek talking about the millennial generation, ?An entire generation, which is now becoming one of the largest electorates in America, came of age and never saw American prosperity.?

Never saw American prosperity. Let that sink in. When I first read that statement, I thought to myself, that was quite literally the most entitled and factually illiterate thing I?ve ever heard in my 26 years on this earth. End of quote.

Prosperity has become like electricity or the internet: unnoticed simply because it is so ubiquitous. Francis Wheen relates the experience of trying to make a millennial comprehend a (true) incident of the British prime minister of the 1970s having his limo driver pull over so he could make an urgent call from a pay phone. ?Why didn?t he use his mobile??

Young people today have never known anything but prosperity. Even the worst economic downturn of modern times, the GFC, pales in comparison to the late 70s, let alone the catastrophe of the 1930s. The near-universal grinding poverty of the pre-Industrial era is beyond the comprehension of moderns. Young leftists celebrate the Piketty narrative of ?inequality? without realising that even the poor are still far richer than they?ve ever been. Inequality?is not an indicator of prosperity: some of the poorest countries in the world have low-income inequality. Quote:

My generation has ONLY seen prosperity. We have no contrast. We didn?t live in the great depression, or live through two world wars, or see the rise and fall of socialism and communism. We don?t know what it?s like not to live without the internet, without cars, without smartphones. We don?t have a lack of prosperity problem. We have an entitlement problem, an ungratefulness problem, and it?s spreading like a plague. End of quote.

Well you’ll work harder with a gun in your back for a bowl of rice a day.

What you need, my son?is a holiday in Cambodia

The Dead Kennedys, “Holiday in Cambodia”

So what to do? My father-in-law lived through one of the most intense bombardments in history. He used to say, ?I don?t want any of you to ever experience war?. It?s tempting to wish a dose of reality salts on what seems like a generation of spoiled brats, but who really wants to force anyone into poverty, even to teach them a lesson?

The best we can do is try to outflank the academic ideologues and huckster politicians, and keep trying to hammer home the lessons of history. Real history. Quote:

My generation is becoming the largest voting bloc in the country. We have an opportunity to continue to propel us forward with the gifts capitalism and democracy has given us. The other option is that we can fall into the trap of entitlement and relapse into restrictive socialist destitution. The choice doesn?t seem too hard, does it? End of quote.