Friday, September 24, 2010

Ignoble Gesture.

Feeling the winds of time starting to blow colder, Baby Boomer Michael Kinsley at The Atlantic shows his true generational colors by making it All About Him.

Apparently the Baby Boomers shouldn't let their parents get away with doing something all monumental and heroic, like saving the world from Hitler and Tojo, without trying to top them by leaving an even bigger and better gift for subsequent generations to look upon and despair.

Joe Klein at Time thought that a suitably Ozymandian generational monument would be the legalization of marijuana, since maybe the only thing in the universe of more lasting significance than not being gassed in a Nazi death camp is a good spliff. Kinsley demurred:
As the Boomers’ parting gift to the nation, it’s like giving your mom a baseball mitt for her birthday. Klein fantasizes stoned 80-year-olds toking away their golden years. Legalized marijuana may be a good idea and is probably coming anyway. But rocking on the front porch (I mean rocking in a rocking chair) watching the cars go by and uttering an occasional “Oh wow” will not strike many as the equivalent of fighting and winning World War II.
Instead, Kinsley offered a more responsible and grown-up gift that his generation, which is now older, more sober-sided, and spends more on Metamucil than mary jane, could leave to those of us poor benighted souls who were too not born to lie about being at Woodstock: A giant new Death Tax to pay down the national debt.

Thanks a lot, Mike. It's good to see that you Boomers have finally got the hang of selflessness and altruism. May I suggest an alternate gift?

Die, hippie.


Living in Babylon said...

Allow me to make the obligatory stoner movie reference.

"You know the Holocaust? Picture the exact opposite of that."

Katie Holme's tits aside, making the claim that removing an asinine government policy is equivalent to saving the world seems to ignore the fact that the government enacted the asinine policy in the first place. It would be like if the US bombed Hiroshima and then won the the war-morally they don't belong in the same ballpark.

Abolishing prohibition is good policy, now that we know it won't turn black men into hypnotic jazz playing rapists. But it is hardly saving the world.

Tam said...


" that we know it won't turn black men into hypnotic jazz playing rapists."

I LOL'ed. :D

2yellowdogs said...

Is that the best he could come up with? Triple-taxing hard-earned money? I'd rather have the weed. At least it'll help pass the time (and relieve the pain) while I wait in line at The People's Collective Medical Clinic #5 with a burst appendix.

Scott said...

Maybe Kinsley can do what Edward G. did in Soylent Green and go to the "Death Panel's Fast Death Salon". Maybe they will give him some Thai Stick to help ease his pain. It would be like...two for the price of one.

Ken said...

Said it before and I'll say it again (and I am a so-called late boomer, born in 'sixty-and-one): I would, cheerfully and without a backward look, forfeit every penny I've paid into Social Security in return for being henceforth let the hell out of it.

2yellowdogs said...

"I would, cheerfully and without a backward look, forfeit every penny I've paid into Social Security..."

Hate to break the news, but you already have.

Brad K. said...

Evidently both Joe Klein (the weed guy) and Michael Kinsley (the rape the dead guy) are still living an affluent life, with no apparent discipline or experience relevant to character and ethics.

Gifts and taxes result in dependence, not discipline, and it is discipline that will eschew "spend someone else's money" to make responsible choices.

If the Boomers want to make a contribution on the order of WWII, evict and eviscerate the UN, review all Federal laws passed since the founding for relevance - and constitutionality - today, address the liberal law-making that the courts have perpetrated, and enforce the constitutional discipline that is supposed to be applied to the courts, to Congress, and the President.

That would be a mark, indeed.

Joanna said...

That dude is a colossal tool.

Borepatch said...

A giant new Death Tax to keep their kids from paying off their college loans.

Fixed it for him.

D.W. Drang said...

While you kids are getting off my lawn, stop acting like those assholes represent me.

Bubblehead Les. said...

SOME of us Boomers ( born Oct. 58) did do something useful: We beat the Soviet Empire w/o anyone having to use an Emergency Bra (and in spite of the Commie Revisionists, Gorbachov was more than happy to keep Marxism-Leninism running, He just wanted Levi's Jeans from the West), but we had to wait until Reagan, Thatcher, John Paul the Deuce and others gained Political Power to replace 35 years of Appeasement on the World Stage. So to those generations following me, why don't you leave a Legacy that could make the Greatest Generation Proud: BEAT the IslamoFascists. Don't elect Politicians who want to "Reach Out" to Iranian Murderers, Don't let Attn.. Generals get Appointed who tell Muslim Terrorists "Use the Harper Lee/ Atticus Fitch/ To Kill a Mockingbird" Defense in your court case and we'll step in and get you free, just BEAT the Bastards back down to the Ground. Let them tell their children around the campfire to "Never Mess with the U.S., or the Wrath of Allah will destroy You", just BEAT them. Rant Over.

Firehand said...

Ah yes, his idea of a gift to the future: "Work hard and succeed, so the government can steal what you worked so hard to build."

May I suggest defenestration?

Ken said...

"Hate to break the news, but you already have."

Yeah, I'm aware. I just don't feel like pouring any more of my life down that rathole.

perlhaqr said...

Ken: I was born 15 years after you, and I assure you, neither do the rest of us. :)

Of course, the Q-tip brigade have discovered they can vote themselves largess from the apathetic mostly-non-voting youth, and the AARP makes sure their senile selves don't forget to go to the polls.

And since most of the Boomers aren't any more libertarian than the "Greatest Generation", we're about to get an even bigger glut of old folks who insist on getting their fair share of, um, my paycheck. (Certainly, none of this is directed at you. You grew up with these people, surely you know what they're going to be like.)

This, more than anything, is what has me convinced we're destined to collapse under our own weight. It took the Romans a couple centuries to finally fall down, but they didn't have our technology for monitoring everything under the sun, either.

Mark Alger said...

I would say we could do well if we could roll back a century of leftist -- these are scorn quotes, folks -- "progress" and restore a little liberty to Americans.

To which ridding the nation of the odious war on (some) drugs and all of its concomitant corruption and collateral damage might not be a bad start.

But only a start.

(Yes, a Boomer)

Brad K. said...

Bubblehead Les,

Science Fiction author Lois McMaster Bujold observes in one of her novels - a weapon is what you use to change your enemy's mind.

Some enemies remain aggressive unto death. But most armies and nations have different goals and are affected by changing realities.

There have to be options to freeing the US, US interests abroad, and the world from undue Islamic influence. Destroying their ability to fight or attack is one way, and armies have been used for that purpose in the past. But we give away something when we let the manipulative propagandists in charge dictate that popular opinion should reflect the marching orders of the army. For the soldier on the line, the task may be clear: kill the enemy. For the General, the broader goal is to stop the enemy from harming his army or his assigned resources, and remove his will toward aggression. For the government that sets the goals for the army, no deaths on either side of a conflict really affect what is desired or achieved.

Beating on a people to make them "behave" has been historically imprudent and unsuccessful, short of subjugation, enslavement, or outright complete slaughter of the nation.

There are other ways to realign a the goals and actions of a nation - or a religion - that outright atttack and "beat them" until they quit. Though sometimes beating them achieves a brief respite.

As with Japan in WWII. I think the war was generally one of attrition, of damaging and destroying armies, navies, and war material to the point that Japan lacked the resources to attack anywhere. The Japanese leaders were let to believe that there was no further point to belligerent action - at which time they changed their mind and the war was allowed to end.

The war against Japan ended when their leaders changed their mind, not because they were no longer alive, nor because they were no longer able to inflict casualties and destruction.

Getting Muslims to change their minds, now, that has been tried since before the Crusades, with Spain showing one (partial) success against the Moors.

Just "beating them" is an infantry squads assignment against an enemy unit. Armies and nations use that squad to achieve different goals than destruction of one particular enemy unit.

Anonymous said...

Joe Klein at Time thought that a suitably Ozymandian generational monument would be the legalization of marijuana, since maybe the only thing in the universe of more lasting significance than not being gassed in a Nazi death camp is a good spliff.

Hot damn that was a well turned, funny line.

Why I keep comin' back here.

Well, that and tips on AR lubrication in the comments.

Armed Texan said...

Here's an idea for all you fascist*† baby boomers who want to make a name for yourself. You don't have to pass a law to leave your money to the government. All you need to do is write a check to the IRS in any amount (beyond your yearly tax liability) that you want. Trust me, they'll cash it.

What's that you say? It wouldn't be fair for you to pay your own wealth into the government while others might not? Why so greedy?

* Yes I know the technical definition of fascist. I'm using it in the sense that they used to use it.

† Not all baby boomers are liberal boneheads.

DirtCrashr said...

Maybe I don't get it but I'm thinking of my mom and dad here, and those 80-year-olds that I know have enough going on without inducing voluntary-Alzheimer's and breathing in an odious and toxic bunch of heavily scented smoke - what a stupid jackass.

staghounds said...

"Boomers could forswear ..."

Perhaps the funniest, and certainly the least likely, phrase ever written.

Desertrat said...

My forebears and my generation figured that leaving "leftover" bucks to the kids and grandkids was part of what this country was all about: Making life better for future generations.

Then come Kinsley et al with the message, "Screw the kids and grandkids!"


TheGraybeard said...

"My forebears and my generation figured that leaving "leftover" bucks to the kids and grandkids was part of what this country was all about: Making life better for future generations."

Then came inheritance taxes that confiscate over half of what you leave. Why shouldn't parents who have done well be able to leave it to their kids? Only a politician thinks they're entitled to that money, which has already been taxed at least once, if not many times.

TimP said...

Uhm, I'm confused; building up a big debt and then preventing your kids from receiving any inheritence is a noble sacrifice?

If the Baby Boomers want to make a noble sacrifice for the good of society why don't they repeal Social Security, or the aged pension here in Australia? It might not be on quite the same scale as fighting WWII, but it would certainly be good and noble, and the burden would actually be borne by the Baby Boomers themselves, rather than Kinsley's plan which basically involves screwing over the next Gen so that they can continue to live in the manner to which they have become accustomed.

Klein's plan is just kind of silly, but at least it's not actually the exact opposite of what they're claiming to be trying to do.

mc said...

Nice post!

The Boomers make me cringe...yow.

Not enough space anywhere to condemn them.

Were they worth the good music?

That's like asking if the silk noose is comfy.