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A millennial’s hymn to Generation X
October 25, 2019 | Financial Times | by Janan Ganesh

Thought-provoking article by Janan Ganesh arguing that the Gen X cohort are passing through life without having left anywhere near the kind of societal impact of either their larger numbered predecessors, the baby boomers, or their larger numbered successors, the millennials.  Generation X have avoided embracing big ideas,  or embracing nobel causes or political zeal.  lack of passion, big vision, no protest movements, no electoral shocks, etc.  Ganesh argues that Generation X's unpretentiousness--their unwillingness to  made a big splash--is standing them in good stead...."No living generation has shown less interest in changing the world. As a result, no living generation looks wiser today." This is because those who are wildly engaged in causes today (e.g. populism, climate activism, etc.) look like utopian true believers.  By contrast, Generation X'ers look like healthy, sober, sceptics....representing a certain hardheadedness or tough-mindedness or prudence.  Even Generation X' popular cultural touch points, movies like Pulp Fiction and Fargo are really more about the  particular and personal rather the evincing a larger societal message.
Ganan concludes by arguing that it is a category error to misinterpret Generation X's circumspection for mediocrity or ineffectiveness. Many tech company founders are Generation X members. " It is just that these gifts were seldom deployed in public life. The cream of the generation chose business and the arts over politics," Janan
mistrusts vision. Sometimes, vision results in blameless people having to pack their things in the night and flee their own country to survive. I like caution. I like moderately countercyclical fiscal policy with a view to 2.25 per cent annual growth over the period, thanks.
'90s  baby_boomers  demographic_changes  generations  Generation_X  Janan_Ganesh  millennials  popular_culture 
october 2019 by jerryking
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