Save America’s young!

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Have you ever wondered what all of the political back and forth about the “future of the nation” and the “financial crisis ahead” really means? It means that young Americans will have to begin their journey way behind the starting line of life and will have to work harder, faster and longer than previous generations. We are literally bankrupting our way into a lower quality of life for the millions of Americans younger than 35.

Our age of political chaos is one in which neither party really solves a problem but instead delays the effects of the problem long enough to blame it on the other party when the tables turn. This results in an exacerbation of the problem and a confusion of its root causes. Meanwhile, young Americans are trying to survive in a world created by the Baby Boomers, who have been in power for quite some time and will be there for the foreseeable future.

For example, let’s look at programs that help the Baby Boom generation and those that help the younger generation to see what the priorities of the current elected leaders are. In recent budget battles, there have been calls for drastic cuts in Head Start, Student Loan programs and AmeriCorps, while the budgets of Medicare, Social Security and Medicare Part D (the prescription drug benefit) continue to soar uncapped. In addition, the senior programs are set to go bankrupt right about the time the last of the Baby Boomers die off. Isn’t that convenient? Meanwhile, programs designed to help the younger generations succeed in an increasing competitive world are slashed in order to allow our older populations to die more comfortably. We are sacrificing the future of our nation and world for the comfort of those who have passed their retirement.

Most Baby Boomers will say “I put into those systems so I deserve something out of it!” Well yes, but the math for those systems was flawed from the start, and everyone knew it. Furthermore, the younger generation is putting everything into Social Security and Medicare and will get nothing out of it. Zero. This “robbing” of the younger generation’s future to pay for the comfort of our elders will only last another decade until the majority of the voting electorate will have shifted in the younger generation’s direction.

It is at that moment, when instead of a clash of rich versus poor, you will see a clash of generations as the older one fights to stay alive and the younger generation fights to live without regard for the comforts of their dying elders.

The last bite…

The other day, I met a friend at J. Alexander’s in Baton Rouge for a spur of the moment lunch. I did not take a single bite of food that disappointed me. It started with a tomato and feta salad, followed by perfectly marinated pork tenderloin sliced into bite sized medallions and topped off with a fresh key lime pie with a plume of homemade whipped cream! I give J. Alexander’s 5 out of 5 crumbs!

Buddy Boe, a resident of Garyville, owns a public relations and program management company and is well known on the local political (and food) scenes. His column appears Wednesdays in L’Observateur.