The Tyranny of Youth

I’m an old man and that means I get cranky when the kids walk on my lawn, if I had a lawn. Like all old people, I was young once. That’s what gives old farts an edge over young pups. We remember what it was like to be them, but they have no way of knowing what it is like to be us. That, alas, is the only benefit of being old. Well, that and the willingness to say things in public that you’re afraid to say when you’re young. Otherwise, I fully admit to agreeing with W.C. Fields when it comes to young people.

I’m exaggerating a bit, but the tyranny of youth culture has gotten out of hand. Mark Steyn has commented for years that male leads are getting younger and more feminine. If I recall, he used the example of William Shatner playing Kirk in the original Star Trek series. Shatner was in his 30’s and playing a role as a middle-aged man. The current Star Trek movies feature boys in their 20’s playing boys in their 20’s inexplicably given command of a starship.

I’m not a big consumer of pop culture and maybe that’s why. Once I reached 30, everyone in music, TV and movies started looking young and silly to me. Even so, pop culture has always been juvenile and repetitive. The Honeymooners, for example, has been a standard template for TV for as long as I’ve been alive. I Love Lucy has been the template for couple-based sitcoms for fifty years now. Eventually, it gets boring for adults so it is left for kids, who are seeing it all for the first time.

That’s no what this post is about, however. The whole youth culture thing is now invading public affairs. The rulers feel it necessary to have bimbos as spokeswomen. Public affairs programming is beginning to look like the cafeteria at your local college. Rather than crabby old guys and gals with years of experience talking about the news, we have hot looking airheads repeating what they heard from some other hot looking airhead.

It’s not just TV news either. The reason for this post is something I saw on National Review the other day. If you look at the picture of the writer, it’s clear he is a child. He looks like he should be organizing the fraternity keg party this weekend, not offering opinions on the Federal Reserve. As an adult, I have no reason to care what this young fellow has to say about anything so why in the world is he offered up as an expert?

So that I don’t sound like a terrible meanie, I’m sure Jon Hartley is a fine young man with a world of promise. His resume says he graduated from U. Chicago with a degree in economics. He held jobs doing statistical work in public and private firms. He would make a great intern at a big bank or possibly a PhD candidate at a university. He’s clearly ambitious and one of his ambitions is to be famous. All of that is wonderful and I wish him the best.

Regardless, he is unqualified to write opinions about current affairs. That pipe I talked about the other day is already packed full of nonsense. The tiny capillaries that remain open to the transmission of sensible information cannot be clogged with the musings of children hoping to be famous one day. Surely there are seasoned adults with knowledge acquired through experience willing to write for these sites. if not and all we are left with is the tyranny of baffled young people it’s time to consider disbanding and going our separate ways.

8 thoughts on “The Tyranny of Youth

  1. PK and moi: two minds with but a single thought.

    At Penthouse I always looked to hire the younger writers when I didn’t need a byline for the cover. They were easy to get on the cheap and you could swing them on a cord.

    • Oh, I’m fine with hiring kids to do reporting. TV news, for example, is just a TV show based on the news. No one wants to some hairy troll reading the weather forecast. I like my weather delivered by a bimbo. In the print world, having young people report on your topics makes sense as they are cheap and eager. I get annoyed when they dress of mall cops and pretend they are a former member of MI6.

      But, they play that game with old guys too. Mike Baker has been turned into Derek Flint by Fox News. Some of the nutty things he says on TV make me think hiring children would be better.

  2. “As an adult, I have no reason to care what this young fellow has to say about anything so why in the world is he offered up as an expert?”

    It is simplicity itself, Z-Man.


  3. I’d rather be tyrannized by baffled people, if that is even possible, than people who knew what they were doing, which has certainly been the case for some time. I will assume the baffled young marionettes are having their strings pulled by the usual crowd to present a hipper image for an old act. Bill Ayers probably doesn’t like people walking on his lawn either.

  4. Psaki and Harf. As kidz say these days: “……Really???!!”

    Here’s another piece from the National Review, reiterating what I’ve been saying for as long as these two first appeared.

    I’ll only add that you could get away with these two representing the EPA, or HUD. But STATE? Diplomacy has been the province of wizened old folks for centuries (and still is, in saner parts of the globe.)

    In the days of “The Ugly American” we were hated. Now we are just laughed at.

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