Generational theft meme

Posted: 16 February 2013 in Uncategorized
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How did the Tea Party meme of “generational theft” go mainstream?

Last August, Robert Samuelson used the notion in his critique of government entitlement programs.

More recently, Geoffrey Canada, Stanley Druckenmiller, and Kevin Warsh joined forces to announce what they consider to be “several hard truths”:

Government spending levels are unsustainable. Higher taxes, however advisable or not, fail to come close to solving the problem. Discretionary spending must be reduced but without harming the safety net for our most vulnerable, or sacrificing future growth (e.g., research and education). Defense and homeland security spending should not be immune to reductions. Most consequentially, the growth in spending on entitlement programs—Social Security, Medicaid and Medicare—must be curbed.

And, if politicians don’t listen to them, “the greatest casualties will be young Americans of all stripes who want—and need—an opportunity to succeed.”

No, government spending levels are not unsustainable. And there’s no need to reduce discretionary spending or to cut entitlement programs. Not if we decide to get serious about taxing some of the enormous surplus captured by wealthy individuals and large corporations.

But that would mean recognizing the existence of class theft. So, to deflect attention from the hard truth of class injustice, the Samuelsons, Canadas, Druckenmillers, and Warshes of the world have decided to borrow the Tea Party slogan and attempt to focus our attention instead on the supposed struggle between generations.

  1. Ben says:

    The budget deficit is so large that there simply aren’t enough rich people to tax to raise enough to balance the budget. Spending must be cut, and there can be no “sacred cows”.

  2. […] programs, which means that seniors are stealing from the young. This is the Tea Party-inspired generational theft meme I’ve written about […]

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