Atlas Shrugged: The Mocking

Monday, March 7, 2011

Everyone [Else] Has To Hurt

Shorter Megan McArdle: You're going to be old and poor because you are greedy. Get used to it.

She's quite the little humanitarian, isn't she?

ADDED: More on this later.


ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

My contribution.

Lurking Canadian said...

Nothing, absolutely nothing, makes her happier than the thought of somebody's grandmother starving to death in a back alley. You can just see her cackling with glee about it.

I am not able to understand a mind capable of such depravity.

Syz said...

Shorter Megan: I don't understand how pensions work but I can say with authority that they are bankrupting our economy.

Cross-reference under: Things Megan doesn't understand because her salary depends on not understanding them.

Susan of Texas said...

McArdle is the living embodiment of agnotolgy. I think being deliberately ignorant and thick-skulled is a type of stupidity.

(Every time I see this word I think of St. Agnes and her sheep.)

Not that I want to slight her considerable evilness in any way.

Kathy said...

I don't suppose ArgelBargle was addressing the Wall Street Banksters, Kochs or Waltons, or our Political "leaders".

Is the Right Wing blaming teachers and unions a case of their going too far with the "blame the Other" meme? Even with the Wall of Noise our Media puts out, it doesn't seem to have convinced too many people.

blivet said...

KWillow, it doesn't really have to convince anyone. It just has to convince us that it has convinced other people, so that we feel isolated.

Syz said...

I was going to cross-post my comment on Megan's blog, but she banned me without any warning or notification. What does it take to get banned by the infinitely patient and fair-minded Megan McArdle? My last post was this:

Shorter Megan: There are no villians in financial crises -- except for consumers, homeowners, the sick, the elderly and the middle class

Downpuppy said...

Banned? Wish I knew.

I've been as rough as I know how to get. She must not want to ban a CPA.

Larkspur said...

I know everybody hates Boomers. There's no point in me getting my feelings hurt, because it's just a fact, like rain or pollen.

But sometimes I wonder if people really think all Boomers are the same. Here's one of McM's commenters:

"...It's sort of crazy how in about 30 years we went from expecting to work until you were incapable to expecting 1/3 of your life to be spent idly. Stupid Boomers...."

See, I have never expected this. My Greatest Generation parents did, and they got what they expected and more. My parents spent approximately 30 years in retirement in Florida, on my father's public sector pension. (It sort of clashed with his quasi-libertarian belief system, but I didn't like to argue.) At one point, my father proposed that we kids start paying them a monthly stipend; you know, reparations or something, because he thought we were getting off too easy. At the time, and most certainly now, none of the three of us kids anticipated a golden years type of retirement, which is good, because none of us will get one. There has never been any point in my adult life that I have expected to retire and relax.

Does everyone who is not a Boomer think of us as already retired? Or do you picture us, in our great numbers, on the brink of a fat and happy retirement? That maybe we're so stupid that we didn't even know that retirement planning was important, as though we simply assumed - and still assume - that the government would provide for us? Anyone who's been in the workforce for the last 20 years knows damn well that the ice is really thin. I know I'm not the only lower-middle class Boomer who had delusions of accomplishment; although I've never had access to a 401 plan, I dutifully squirelled away money to an IRA every month (after heeding the advice to accumulate a six-month emergency fund, which is fucking hard). Then I watched my modest, conservative investment erode, and then times got harder and I had to cash the damn thing in. Does anyone imagine that I don't comprehend the implications of that? Or that I still feel like everything is going to be okay? Or that I've got a fucking Hoveround on order?

It's okay. No one has to answer me. You can just go to the default, which is "Die already, fucking Boomer".

Smut Clyde said...

we went from expecting to work until you were incapable to expecting 1/3 of your life to be spent idly.

I am intrigued by the logic that equates "not working for someone else" with "idleness".

Kathy said...

Another example of The Rich complaining about the laziness of their servants. Yes, even as the servants cook their food, clean their house, raise their children, the Rich Women whine to one another how lazy "those people" are.

Lazy Bum Americans, thinking they could spend their last decade or two -in between doctor visits for Prostate cancer and heart problems and taking high blood-pressure or anti-coagulating meds that turn the skin to paper- not "working" for rich people.

NonyNony said...

Does everyone who is not a Boomer think of us as already retired?

Just FYI - the anger that younger generations feel towards Boomers as a class of people boils down to a couple of things:

We were sold a lie about how great the Boomer generation was when we were young. We were constantly (constantly) told that Boomers were more politically involved than we were, that we were lazier than they were, that they got shit done by protesting in the streets and we were failing the world by not being as activist as they were.

Then we realized the truth - the Boomers did jack shit as far as changing the world except that marketers from the "Greatest" and "Silent" generations figured out that large number of kids with disposable income would spend their money on trivial crap in ways that their parents never could. That was the big revolution of the Boomer generation - the hippies and the protests in the streets and all the rest of it did less to change the world than anything else we were doing.

And the grown-up Boomers gave us such wonderful politicians as Reagan, Bush I, and Clinton who one after the other drove the economy into the ground and drove jobs that could have been ours out to other countries.

And to top it all off - the Boomers as a class of people raised a generation of arrogant assholes (mine - gen X). Seriously my generation is full of selfish assholes and as far as I can tell the only way they got that way is that they learned it from their parents.

So that's at least a good chunk of the reason why friends in my circle have a particular anger towards the Boomers as a generational class - individual Boomers are of course awesome and should be judged on their merits. But when we were young our heads were stuffed so full of how awesome the 60s were and how much was accomplished by the Boomer generation in the 60s that finding out it was a giant, swelling lie was like finding out there was no Santa Claus. And the carnage on our economy and our lives that the Boomer generation as a class is directly responsible for makes us angry. And we STILL have to hear about how awesome the 60s were and all the bullshit about anti-war protests even today, when we know it's as real as peter pan's neverland.

That's why we tend to get pissy about Boomers - as a class they got a great setup from their parents and then turned around and trashed it and then handed their children and grandchildren the broken pieces and keep telling them "well, you're just going to have to figure out how to do more with less". you can see how that might breed some resentment after a while, can't you?

Lurking Canadian said...

Megan's position on pensions appears to be this: Since people didn't save enough to live on $80K, we should really cut Social Security so they can't live on $25K either. That'll teach them to save!

Larkspur said...

" can see how that might breed some resentment after a while, can't you?"

Yeah, actually I can, and you describe it well, NonyNony. I tend to put too much weight on my own personal memories and neglect to step back and look at the whole picture.

The 60s era was not awesome and exhilarating for me. It was unsettling, confusing, and heartbreaking. Personal and political events pretty much derailed my life, and I was never able to quite catch up. So I guess I too am comparing myself to a Boomer archetype, and I'm coming up short. The fact that as a member of the class, I could not make use of the "great setup" and that the setup I blew doesn't really exist any more, that is genuinely distressing and deeply humiliating.

Unknown said...

well, nony nony, yours is indeed the first generation in human history to feel that the previous generation is responsible for the world's ills, i sincerely feel your pain.

and yes, in truth, i confess that reagan, bush i and clinton were my personal idea, you caught me.

but let me get your last point straight: you blame me because your generation is a bunch of assholes? well, i guess you just proved it.

Susan of Texas said...

I was born at the end of the baby boom and we saw an equal amount of the older people blaming baby boomers for their self-indulgence and baby boomers blaming the older people for the world's ills. We were constantly warned against becoming like them while the boomers were constantly praising themselves. That sounds unfair but for us kids that's how seemed.

The boomers got the drugs, we got the drug lectures. The boomers had free love and we had AIDS. The boomers had economic prosperity and we had inflation and gasoline lines. The boomers had Kennedy and we had Nixon and Reagan. It was very, very easy to resent them.

But now I see the older teens blame our generation, and our generation blame the teens. Everyone does this and always has--as you get older you forget what it was like to be young and ignorant, and the young people don't yet realize how little control most older people have over their world. And the media and government have become very good at using this natural tension to control us by pitting us against each other.