About The Missing Generation…

Over the weekend, this photo rumbled across the transom–see if you can find what’s missing:

socialism

Like most of the GenXers on the Twitterz, I just laughed: of course GenX was ignored. But snark aside, this omission actually tells us something about the narratives professional pollsters try to tell–and try to sell.

As best as I can figure, the graphic is based on this Hill teaser story about data from a Mark Penn-linked polling outfit. I’m guessing GenX was left out because it didn’t fit the story that the pollsters wanted to tell: THE AVOCADO TOAST PEOPLE LURVES TEH SOCIALISMZ! If GenX numbers had been very close to the Boomers’, then the story line still work. Even if the GenX approval numbers had been in the mid 30s, that still fits.

But I suspect that the GenX numbers were very similar to millenials–at least the mid-40s. It’s hard to argue socialism is an affliction of youth unless you’re willing to define ‘young’ as… [checks data] …47. Even worse, it very well might be that the older cohort (45+) in GenX has higher support for TEH SOCIALISMZ! than the younger cohort in the missing age group, which makes understanding these data more difficult. Even more problematic, as the kids like to say. This wouldn’t be surprising what with the very late 1980s and early 1990s being the worst entry job market until the Collapse of Big Shitpile in 2008, remembering the stupid final days of the Cold War, and the redefinition of socialism to mean good healthcare and affordable college, many GenXers, especially older ones, would be partial to ‘socialism.’ (in fairness, the younger half of the missing generation is probably better on social issues than the older half).

Anyway, they’ll release the full data later this week–and this post might age poorly!–but I’m guessing a Mark Penn-led outfit isn’t thrilled about a story that is basically ‘baby boomers against everyone else’ with some weird (for clueless centrists like Mark Penn, anyway) subcohort effects.

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3 Responses to About The Missing Generation…

  1. John Magoun says:

    I found the article difficult to decode; it seemed to be written by insiders for insiders. I did notice that much of it was about how many people thought the Democratic Party was “socialist”. Your comments are about the other half of the discussion, which is how many voters themselves would prefer a “socialist” system. As I said, I’m still trying to figure out what the point is, besides Penn’s assertion, based on something, that the poll is bad news for the Democrats.

  2. Dave Dell says:

    Speaking for myself, a baby boomer that’s coming up on age 70, my impression is that baby boomers are a little more socialist than what polls indicate. Polls being what they are – largely empty of nuance.

    Educated in a system where there were color contrast world maps presented to us that had First World Countries – U.S., Canada, Western Europe; Communist Bloc Countries – USSR, China, Eastern Europe; and Third World Countries – all of Africa, most of the rest of Asia except perhaps Israel. Communism was conflated with Socialism to the point where any differences were not material. The world was presented to us (me) as a battleground of Communism/Socialism vs Freedom. The battle was recently fought in a hot war – Korea but mostly was being fought in countries shrugging off colonial rule – Brown People Countries. Note: I confess I didn’t think of it that way until confronted personally with reality in Vietnam.

    I guess I’m saying that it’s difficult for a lot of boomers to get past that early indoctrination of “Socialism = Enemy/Bad” even though they depend on “Social Welfare” programs and policies to take the rough edges off unbridled “HyperCapitalism”.

  3. Thank you

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