I am Gen-X. I didn't agree 100% with the initial article, but I disagree even more with this one.

GenX is the product of a school system that was already moving away from academics. Many of us were taught simplistic frames and structures about politics that involved labeling a line and placing parties on the line and noting how proximate different parties were to the extremes. Fellow gen-x'ers may remember how close the NDP used to land towards the left extremes - I won't comment on whether the NDP still does fall close to the left extreme on an internal level and have just made their message more palatable or not. But my point is - GenX was told "vote", "this is what a democracy is", and then set free on our merry way. Yes there were some small debate clubs - but actually engaging with political ideas, and developing our own personal beliefs around politics, was not something that was taught.

What were the movements of the GenX youth? What types of activism did we engage in? I legitimately don't remember - I do remember bomb threats in my schools. (Yes, plural!) I remember DARE presentations. I remember MADD presentations. I remember much of the academics - but the social studies side? Not so much. Even now, it doesn't really teach kids how to be citizens, how to organize movements, how to recognize individualism versus collectivism and how to try to bring balance to the conversation.

This is ultimately the larger challenge - pure collectivism is a net negative whether someone is oriented left wing or right wing. Sacrificing individuals, because it benefits the majority is disrespectful and harmful to the individual - and at the end of the day we are all individuals and none of us are better than another nor are some more worthy of saving than others. Proponents of collectivism always have a reason why this time it will be different - and I'm not saying that we should ignore collectivism completely and never engage in it. I do support social programs that helps people get back on their feet and re-enter society and have roofs over their heads and food to eat... BUT I don't support sacrificing one person to save another person.

A healthy society is able to balance the rights of the individual with the needs of the community. I would argue that the larger problem we have now, is that we don't know how to have these conversations (I agree with the author on this aspect,) AND that we are having false discussions that are limited to surface ideas of right vs. left and identity politics, rather than looking at the heart of it which is the balance between the extreme collectivism of pure communism/fascism/authoritanism/socialism and the rights of the individual. We can all exist as individuals AND care about our communities. This isn't an either/or proposition and I think this lack of understanding, is why we are where we are. Combined with a heaping helping of people not being very comfortable residing in their own personal discomfort and looking for quick-fixes. Sometimes our discomfort reflects something in our lives or world that needs to be changed and paying attention to that rather than running away from it would be beneficial.

I suppose the time was always going to come where much ink would be spilled about gen-X. As I see it, gen-X and probably all of the millennial generation, grew up overly dependent on "experts". Now, in middle age, we are realizing experts don't know everything and sometimes they're outright wrong in harmful ways. This is a tough proverbial pill to swallow and unfortunately, the reliance on experts means that many gen-X don't have the ability to evaluate the facts of a situation for themselves, so they look to populist leaders to tell them how it is. It's really just a transferring of power from one authority figure to another, but because there is a lack of self-reflection around this, most of them don't realize it. Some of this even applies to the situation with media - I watched the news every day until one day, a story that was being reported on was a situation I had firsthand knowledge in and I realized the news was not being truthful in it's reporting. Once I saw the news as just another program, I turned it off and cancelled cable. (I haven't regularly watched news in over a decade now!)

I guess my point is - the underlying factors with gen-X are very complicated, and I don't think they can be summed up simply when it comes to political beliefs. I started out a conservative voter, then changed to NDP, and now am back to conservative because I have fundamental disagreements in how the NDP wants to run the economy. Unlike many people, I do read multiple party's platforms each election - not just the short summary version, but the actual full PDF version. I vote based on those policies - not based on ads or polls or whatever is going on in the media. I'm really not loyal to one specific party. I've voted for 4 different parties in my years of voting, and won't say how I'll vote in future elections because it will depend on the policies that are being proposed.

I am concerned about what I view as a loss of truth in society because I understand that politicians are in some ways playing a part when they communicate with the public - they're delivering what they want us to know, not necessarily the full story. Likewise, the big media companies mostly have the same stories, with the same approved headlines and content. I will end my comments here as I realize it's probably longer than most will read anyways. But my main point is that we are where we are politically for reasons that are much more complicated, and some of this burden goes back to the school system (it remains an even larger issue now than it was when I was in school,) and to the general societal shift of trying to avoid emotionally uncomfortable conversations. When we lose our ability to challenge ideas in a respectful ways, then citizens lose the ability to engage meaningfully with our democracy and other institutions. Trust is lost. And this is where we are now. I don't know how to fix it because I know many of my peers aren't willing to self-reflect or change their views. I just know that there is a huge amount of complexity as to the "why" of where we are - and it's not going to be any better with the younger generation. Gen Y is actually more conservative in many ways than millennials and gen X. Not all of them - but those who come through the school system now and are more conservative leaning, are much more rigid in their beliefs because they've spent their school years finding ways to either hide their beliefs, or pushing back against beliefs they disagree with. It will be interesting to see what happens as time passes.

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Rather than just seeing what happens over time, we need GenXers with your passion and clarity of thought to start setting the agenda a little more. It might not take much, and every little bit could help. Your approach to spending the time analyzing party platforms prior to supporting a political movement is an excellent case-in-point. We need more of that, so maybe driving the agenda by sharing this technique with others is the sort of "little more" that we each can contribute.

I've been trying to tell my elementary-school aged daughter for a while now that, "I just want you make well-reasoned decisions in life, even if I disagree with them. Critical thinking is what's most important, not fitting in with that others think." She just looks back at me says, "I don't get it" before turning back to Tik Tok. I sigh and then quietly lament the lack of academics and grieve for the future. But that's probably the wrong approach. Maybe I should spend the time and read Candide with her? Just little things like that could make a big difference, perhaps?

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I have absolutely modeled this "how to choose a party" type of input with my kids and encouraged them to form their own opinions.

On a semi-related note, both of my younger 2 kids have had social media hiatus forced on them at different times so that they've had to engage in the real world and actually learn how to communicate and develop meaningful relationships with people around them. I think many share my initial opinion of social media "bringing people together" but as I've gotten older and watched my kids grow up in the age of social media, I've learned that social media is a temporary feeling of being closer to someone but doesn't create actual meaningful connections. (And it really does cause a host of problems.)

My unasked for 2 cents is start a day where the whole family is offline and go do something as your daughter is still pretty young. (I'm almost to the empty nest stage so am a bit further down the road in this aspect.) I think really connecting with the world in different experiences is the best way to help our kids start to engage with society. Let them see age appropriate problems, encourage them to come up with ideas and suggestions of how to solve them. They don't get those opportunities in the classroom - so if you can create them, it's invaluable. There are so many amazing historic and cultural sites to visit across Canada - and many of these sites provide natural opportunities for discussing where we were, where we are now, and where we'd like to see our communities go in the future. I'm also a big believer that in understanding what life was like in the past, it helps us appreciate and be better stewards of what we have in the present.

To your point about getting more involved - yes, I do encourage my friends and family to do the same. I am the difficult person who is often commenting about why an article isn't balanced or is inaccurate. (I get called a lot of names from both sides of the political aisle at times because I care about truths and balance more than loyalties.) I do contact my elected representatives and I now have party memberships both provincially and federally so I can give input on a different level even if it's just in the form of prioritizing which things I think are most important to discuss at the annual convention.

Where I struggle, is it's hard to find meaningful ways to make a difference - so I figure that one step at a time in my local circle of influence, and just striving to be the type of person and treat others the way I'd want to be treated, will make a difference. And that's what I'm teaching (taught?) my kids. Maybe some day my ambitions will change and I'll decide to enter the actual political arena. But it's not where I want to go or what I want to do at the moment. (And I'm not convinced it's the most effective way either.) I admit to missing the days where people played the devil's advocate just to have a well rounded and thought provoking discussion.

Enjoy the time with your daughter. Yes, I do think little things make a big difference with our kids. It amazes me the things that my kids share now that were really memorable life-altering moments for them. They are sometimes moments which seemed routine or difficult for me, but they've pulled these life lessons from them that have shaped their choices. The years your daughter is currently in are invaluable - and they are so short lived. I wish you well as you navigate this. I think that anything is better than nothing - but the more connection she has to her community and the people around her, the better positioned she'll be as she moves into the teen years and then adulthood. It's difficult to come of age in today's world, but friends really do make it easier. (Or they have for my kids anyways.)

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Very well said, and an interesting question. Are Gen-Xers less tied to a political party or movement than other generations? I've always thought binding oneself to such things is a danger of ideological tribalism -- it's not a good thing in general, but rather remain open-minded, debate, discuss, and reach conclusion on merits, not "win/lose" based on teaming or pushing a single-sided viewpoint in enough numbers.

I too have voted across the "spectrum" (more multi-dimensional landscape), mostly Liberal, occasionally NDP, occasionally PC, and I believe only once Conservative Party, plus a couple of "fringe" parties.

Perhaps that is the flipside to this article. If Gen-X aren't experienced at organizing and creating movements, is that necessarily a bad thing? Is organizing people behind a single principle -- to the exclusion of nuance and dissenting views -- to get a "movement" in place essentially by coercive forces of numbers -- a good thing? Shouldn't policy and changes be based on more objective evaluation processes where differing views are considered equally, not by who speaks the loudest or with the most charisma or followers? Democracy works through discussion and convincing, but if it is "movement"-based, then it is simply a matter of who can grow the biggest cult, and that will always be the one who coerces and threatens to harm dissenters.

Wokism is a perfect example; it hasn't spread by convincing people of its principles; it spreads by masking its principles under similar-sounding names that people had already signed up to, and by threating and hurting people. It isn't a good way to make change, but it can still be an effective way to get it done, completely independent of the the value of the underlying movement toward improving or worsening society.

In that context, I would argue that the ability to organize and make movements is not really a good quality. It is more like a necessary evil if, and only if, the institutions of society and those who lead them fail to live up to liberal democratic principles when it comes to making changes. Perhaps then I'd agree with that part of the article; I'd just disagree with the value it implicitly places upon it.

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I think in some ways Gen-X is less tied to a political party - I guess what remains to be seen, is once they've switched parties, do they stay there, or do they go back.

If I was to guess, I think Gen-X are capable of organizing and creating movements - BUT - I think they don't do it very often. I'm sure I could organize something - I'm good with logistics and good with data and have strong communication skillsets. HOWEVER - I wouldn't want to be locked into a singular statement of "who I am" or "what I represent" - I value nuance and discussion far too much. And until really the last 4'ish years, I didn't have major concerns about policies and how things were proceeding, so I would vote, and then go back to life. I'm going to guess that isn't that unique of a story - in that the people capable of organizing others behind them in Gen-X just haven't seen the need to try and re-invent the wheel.

Now - whether it's a good quality or not, I'm not sure of. I think it is a necessary quality when it comes to any movement, and isn't necessarily good or bad - but comes down to the ethics of the person who is doing it. Why is the person organizing? Why are they seeking power? There are many many reasons - some which you could put in the "good" bucket, and others which you could put in the "bad" bucket. I'm perhaps an optimist and believe that most people start out with good intentions, but when you get "inside" the system, there are so many barriers to doing good, that it makes people fall back on their promises and goals quite quickly.

Lately I've been thinking about the abysmal state of the federal government, and how incompetent it appears the Liberals are at fixing it. But do any of us truly believe that any of the other parties have both the will, the people, and the knowledge to do the restructuring that is needed to solve these problems? I'm not sure. It's very easy for those of us who aren't in political leadership to say what we'd do if we were the ones making the decisions - but I have no doubt there's a whole extra layer of complexity that those who are actually in power, face. I'd like to believe the federal government is fixable - but I think it would take outside consultants to fix it PLUS the government would need to be willing to make major changes. (And resistance to change is a pretty universal human trait.)

To answer your question - yes, I think policy and changes absolutely should be based on an objective evaluation process. What I've come to realize though, is that most people aren't able to evaluate things objectively. It's difficult to implement a change that you are personally opposed to, or that will make your own life more difficult - even if that change is for the better. So I think what it comes down to - is that we need leaders with the willingness to challenges themselves AND lead their followers down a path that includes the required change. Will they do that? I don't know. But I think that's what is needed.

Lots to think about in your comment here - thank you. Nuance and dissenting views are a necessity - and I think this is the piece that really needs to be brought forward to many many people of all political stripes and beliefs. People are too quick to classify "us" and "them" and polarize accordingly and that serves nobody.

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"Rahim Mohamed sees a generational shift as Gen X lurches to the right to suit its contrarian nature. I see a mid-life crisis, with my generation embarrassing itself by incoherently protesting about personal affronts and resisting deep changes to a society it never wanted to call home. "

I disagree with both. First, I dislike the idea of treating generations like monoliths. But fine, if we must talk about statistical tendencies ...

I don't see anything embarrassing or incoherent, or about "personal affronts". Gen X was the first generation brought up where individual rights and freedoms were already baked in. From the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights, to U.S. Civil Rights Act, to the 60s movements, to even Canada's Charter. It was well settled empirically, morally, philosophically, and legally that you treat people as individuals based on their circumstances -- that they aren't defined by collecting people by common traits and calling it a group, the equivalent of applying a spreadsheet "roll-up" average to every "member" of the collection.

We Gen-Xers learned from the start the well-established evils that occur when you don't do that, from WWII atrocities, Orwell's 1984, tribal psychology (Realistic Conflict Theory), experimentation without consent, and so on. We grew up in the era of the Soviet Union collapse, and the horror stories of what happened/happens in socialist societies. Many GenXers in Canada grew up behind the Iron Curtain.

It is because we understood the reasons for all of these (small-L) liberal principles, and the evils that occur in other systems, that we very coherently see the harms that will, and do, occur when we violate those principles. We also tend to check the source material, and not the political and media stories regularly misrepresent the truth, whether due to agendas or incompetence.

If we must, let's take the Freedom Convoy. If you actually watch the live video streams of people in those protests, there are hundreds of live interviews and a very high proportion of random people are immigrants, particularly from socialist countries, and were very worried about seeing Canada adopting policies similar to those they ran away from.

When you check the media and politicians about their claims of what the science says, it doesn't match. The WHO and many medical organizations were against mandates. Health Canada's risk mitigation plan was based on individual choice in order to mitigate the unknown risks it cited. Approval was not based on safety, but on benefits (during the pandemic) outweighing the risk. Vaccine monographs, still being updated by the manufacturers and Health Canada, list many risks and many unknowns including it not being established if they affect fertility, passed through mother's milk to infants -- and can't rule out harm to the infants. They still say that updated in late 2022.

NACI's Oct 22, 2021, report directly said there was insufficient evidence to make conclusions about vaccine's ability to reduce spread / transmission.

People recognized that Trudeau abided by the WHO recommendations against mandates until Aug 2021 when he saw an opportunity to get a majority government by being divisive, and irrational hatred of unvaccinated people erupted. This "us vs them" divisive hatred was very much predicted and predictable per the post-WWII psychology we grew up with, and why the individual freedoms were paramount.

This wasn't about "personal" affronts. Most protestors were fully vaccinated. Truckers were more highly vaccinated than the general population. It was about treating others in our society as second-class citizens, as so many societies had done before and we see around the world. It was about violating basic human decencies toward each other. Watch the videos at how Quebeckers and Albertans came together, united in the beliefs of treating citizens with human decency and the most basic rights.

The same principles apply with anti-Woke. Wokism is belief system in which it is ok to reduce people's values based on their "group-defining" traits, not their individual situation. Again, the outcome is predictable that this will increase hatred, divisiveness, unconscious bias, and injustice, and do nothing of use. It's premise is backwards, essentially comparing everybody else to white males and saying that everybody should want to do what they do in the same proportions, and then forceably make the numbers come out proportional to make these activists happy. This is, of course, backwards. It says the fact there are few Amish physicists is automatically due to systemic bias against the Amish, and we must force the Amish physicist numbers to rise to be "equitable".

It also isn't "neo-traditionalist". It is Chesterton's Fence. We understand *why* these principles exist at the level of our constitution. They are a defence against the evils of tribal psychology and authoritarian elitism. We understand that progress is made -- not through coercive threats by governments or mobs -- but by normalization and patience. Let people object. The ACLU had it right in Skokie.

There is nothing incoherent or embarrassing about any of this.


It also isn't a move to "the right". It used to be that the Liberals fought against authoritarian religious conservatives, fought for individual rights and freedoms, and defended the freedom of speech, freedom to choose ("My body, my choice!"), and signed up to the principle that, "I may disagree with what you say, but I will defend with my life your right to say it."

Now, it is the Liberals (and NDP) who are the threat to these principles. It's not that Gen X have aligned with social conservatism, but that the Liberal party has abandoned defending these principles and have taken to pushing a monolithic orthodoxy of belief. The Edmonton teacher attacking a Muslim student for their beliefs is as much a religious conservative as any, and is only slightly more overt than what is the political norm.

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Jun 19, 2023·edited Jun 19, 2023

Thanks for this. Was just saying to a friend that it feels like we are moving back to the late 19th century - cronyism in politics, devolution of labour movement gains, poverty blame and lack of will for public health. I was motivated to volunteer for a candidate during the Alberta election and heartened to see many others do the same; all of us saying we'd never felt like we needed to do it before. I hope this trend continues and folks will get involved in organizations that promote the society they want to see. It is this voluntarism that will make a difference.

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I think some of Gen X's politics are shaped simply by being squashed between the overbearing Baby Boomer and Millennial generations. The size of the Boomer cohort has dominated politics, economics, and culture for the entire adulthood of Gen X, and continue to have outsized influence today. The Millennials are the Boomers' kids (although the latter half of Gen X are the kids of the oldest Boomers) and have shared the same sense of exceptionalism and entitlement.

If you're Gen X, you spent your early adulthood trying to find a foothold in a tough economy and got buffeted by 2-3 financial crashes resulting from Boomers running the economy and rushing to pile retirement savings into the market. By the time you got established and made progress in your career, you were besieged by a horde of Millennials who wanted to reshape the entire workplace to expectations formed by a childhood of overinvolved parents, and who'd whine incessantly that nobody had ever had it so rough as them. To the kids who grew up under the shadow of nuclear war, a dismal economy with high interest rates, and disproportionate representation of latchkey kids with limited parental involvement.

Anyway, by now Gen X is middle aged and cranky. We've seen stuff, we're still putting up with crap from Boomers and looking after aging parents. We're stuck with a mess of problems that the Boomers ignored for several decades because they couldn't believe they'd ever actually get old. Our kids are dealing with a weird school environment formed around the political sensibilities of the Millennials.

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Jun 19, 2023·edited Jun 19, 2023

As a mid X'r (born 1971), I have a different take. Mine was the DIY generation that didn't need experts. I was the text book latch key kid in a family with 5 kids and both parents working full time in demanding jobs. We got up and off to school on our own, stayed home unsupervised for several hours after school, walked to activities, ventured all over the city public transit and watched and read whatever we wanted. The term "child care" didn't exist in my parents' vocabulary. Perhaps my experience was unique as I grew up mostly in the very libertarian minded southern suburbs of Calgary where most of the families came from simple backgrounds and leveraged engineering degrees and accounting designations to exponential upwards mobility.

My educational experience was also very different. I am the product of open concept classrooms (no walls), split classes and a curriculum that focused more on critical thinking than right or wrong.

Another reason why Gen X tends to be politically disengaged is that most of us grew up during the 80s and 90s austerity. Few thought of careers in public service because few opportunities existed.

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This resonates. As a "young Gen Xer" I've increasingly had to come to terms with the reality that the problem is not with the way the older generation (Boomers) or the younger ones (Millennials) run the polis, but rather the way in which my generation has so effectively dropped out of contention. While it was fun for a while, there is now a real dearth of talent (myself included) in making things happen, both for ourselves, and for others. This is the source of our malcontent, and we really only have ourselves to blame.

So what's the solution? Your choice of words is apt - our skills have "atrophied" but are probably (hopefully?) not entirely lost. My view is that Gen Xers and younger Millennials do have the latent talent needed to make a difference, but we just need to buckle down and exercise that part of us that lies dormant and unexercised. After all, in all of known history, we're the best combination of competition-based achievement (thanks for all that shit you put me through, Boomers!) and comprehensive knowledge and education (which also exists for the Millennials, but comes out of expectation and not accomplishment) out there. Importantly, we need to stop giving up at the first sign of trouble. For some reason, GenXers are too quick to give up on the fight whenever a Boomer out-manoeuvres us, or a Millennial publicly shames us. Time to stop complaining that "the man" has set the conditions for our failure, and that those younger than us are the only real beneficiaries of all our whinging over the past forty years. Let's take to heart all that eastern mysticism that we claim to identify with, and start being the change that we want to see in the world!

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Great article. As a Gen X'r, I consider a lack of political engagement as more of a feature than a bug. Perhaps that is because I view so-called neo-liberal policies as both desirable and inevitable. In most cases, markets will solve problems provided they operate with the accountability (ex. a party to a contract must perform to its terms) and transparency (ex. the parties to a contract must reveal their identities) to attract liquidity (i.e. many buyers and sellers). Globalization and technology have delivered most of that liquidity. The biggest challenges are bad actors, who evade accountability and transparency, and governments who either can't or won't enforce accountability and transparency. The Financial Crisis provides provides a great example. Financial institutions evaded accountability and transparency by underwriting low quality mortgages. Lethargic regulators were unable to quantify the risk. Governments bailed out banks, rather than holding them accountable through failure. It would be naïve to assume that government could always enforce accountability and transparency, but a great start would be to limit debt accumulation which would in turn limit amplification of the risk. Government should not be able to fund anything other than capital (ex. infrastructure) using long term debt. Banks should have to maintain healthy, risk adjusted reserve ratios. Individuals should have far less access to mortgages, consumer debt and lines of credit.

Progress on social issues is a red herring as society have long passed the point where government can dictate social norms. This core belief will set Millennials on fire, but so-called social policy is a ruse. It is a useful political tool as it stirs emotion, but in a world where individuals have infinite access to information and to other individuals, the genie is out of the bottle.

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That's a great vision, Doug, and I personally agree with this limited intervention, constrained government sort of approach to how our polis should function. The "invisible hand" of natural feedback loops is a better allocator of societal resources than armies of bureaucrats trying to convince us that they have our best interests at heart. But this is not inevitable, and the corruption of "bad actors" that you describe will multiply like a cancer until they are so opaque, unaccountable, and powerful that they simply do not need to bother with rest of us anymore. Accordingly, we do need to be politically engaged, at least in this respect (and perhaps only in this respect) in order to keep things on track. We only have to look to the southern two thirds of the new world to see how creeping corruption can ruin things over the longer run (remember that Argentina and Canada were on similar paths in the not-too-distant past, after all, and this is only one example). We do need to be engaged if we have a vision of the future and want to see it take root.

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Jun 19, 2023·edited Jun 19, 2023

How different would be the outcome if the Argentinian government had never been extended credit? The bad actors would have surfaced much more quickly. The key is to shorten the feedback loops.

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Jun 20, 2023·edited Jun 20, 2023

As a Gen-X'er I've always been very interested in policy and skeptical of politics. To me the former is the art of governing and the latter is the art of winning power. Over my lifetime, the shift has been towards politics and away from policy. The meaningful debates of my youth (Free trade? Balancing provincial power to keep Quebec in Canada? Appropriate deficits?) have been replaced by ill-considered, half-baked policy driven entirely by politics.

The shift toward politics seems to have been matched by the shift towards partisanism. This all feels way more like sports fandom (support your team!) than any kind of informed policy debate. None of this feels like an effective way to solve challenges or impact change. Politics seems designed instead to sustain the same handful of debates without any real resolution -- just keep people arguing in bad faith.

At the same time, political parties seem to have become captured by their funders -- be they large corporate interests or niche special interests. They have become less responsive to the broader electorate.

I continue to be very interested in public policy and that's matched by an increasing disinterest in politics as the two become increasingly divorced from each other. I'm more interested in what other institutions can drive effective solutions and coalition-building, though I'm not sure what that looks like yet. I'll continue to vote and express my opinions to my elected officials, but no longer expect that's going to have much real impact.

Gen-x: born skeptical, probably gonna die skeptical!

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Please, please could The Line not spare us from articles that reference totally illusionary classes of people like Gen-X, Gen-Y, Millennials and Gen-Z?

I know people from all of these so-called groups and the most salient thing about them is how much they differ one from the other.

Invoking these labels and trying to draw conclusions from them is as inane as invoking astrology and we might do well to remind ourselves of what Edmund said in King Lear about that:

This is the excellent foppery of the world, that when we are sick in fortune, often the surfeits of our own behavior, we make guilty of our disasters the sun, the moon, and stars, as if we were villains on necessity, fools by heavenly compulsion, knaves, thieves, and treacherers by spherical predominance, drunkards, liars, and adulterers by an enforced obedience of planetary influence, and all that we are evil in by a divine thrusting-on. An admirable evasion of whoremaster man, to lay his goatish disposition on the charge of a star!

So I beg of you dear editors of the The Line, do go light henceforth on the 'excellent foppery'.


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Well written, while I might not agree with all, certainly some points to think about. Good article.

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As an elder Millennial, I feel irked that I am lumped in as a fellow possessor of this nonconstructive trait, that's always irritated me about Gen Xers. I take umbrage! I've found my belief that things can be better (in spite of much to the contrary) irritates a lot of said Xers - and at the very least, my cohort deserves to be set apart, for that ;)!

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Jun 19, 2023·edited Jun 19, 2023

Concur. However there were also two events that pushed back on left wing trajectories. One was 9/11 and the reaction to it by the west. Security became paramount. The other (opposite) one was the longer decay of that approach thanks to the unnecessary invasion of Iraq and lately thanks to the disastrous withdrawal from Afghanistan. All of these events shaped everyone’s views to security issues but particularly younger generations who did not live through WWII or the Cold War. Those younger generations must be very wary of security talk now (no matter the necessity) and also so-called “woke” action — a number of initiatives designed to drive the normal out of normal. Whatever that is. Frustrating is too light a description for what they are bearing now. As a boomer I cannnot imagine it. I am old enough to (wisely) ignore it.

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