Monday, 27 March 2017

People : British Baby Boomer Bullshit

I'm going to talk about someone I know, whom I have known all my life, they consider themselves to have been brought up without the advantages of a modern childhood (my birth in the late 1970's and childhood in the 1980's being considered modern to their birth in the mid-1950's).

They once spoke to me about my having advantages they don't... That I could get work, when they couldn't (at least not at the time - the 1990's) and I admit that with the closure of the coal industry, the privitazation of Rail and Telecomms many "normal" routes of general employment of the British worker of yester-year were curtailed; though not closed off; in the 1990's.

But, I was still a kid, I didn't go to university until 1996, and I officially didn't graduate (despite working in the IT industry from 1998) until 2000.

All the time I struggled to keep myself in work, and have been now gainfully employed fulltime since 1998, no mean feat between Brexit today and the dot com bubble burst at the time of my graduation.

So, what was this persons point?... Well, their point was "We kids of the Baby Boom, were only had to replace the war dead, our parents had no interest in us".

They repeated this mantra in several slight variations for many years, and it always struck me as odd, even as a kid.  Because I had read the history of the second world war, and here in Britain we can only count about 350,000 service personnel killed (328,600 according to wikipedia) and there were only 67,100 civilian dead, a total less than half a million people.  Tragic, but nowhere near enough to warrant a ten year population boom from 1945 to 1955 of around 800,000 births per year.

A birth trend which went on for a peak of over 1 million live births in 1963.

That's millions more people, which this one person justified their upbringing as warranted for the loss of less than half a million lives in a war?  A war which predates them by a decade?

Strange thinking... And only now, in the internet age can one really turn around and challenge such strange miss-conceptions, no you didn't have a poor childhood, we're on the cusp of living our days where the current generations are for the first time earning less per capita than the previous, that is only now, nearing seventy years since your birth, that's generations before now which have enjoyed living well.

Brexit brings uncertainty, our special relationship with the USA; ironically fostered during the Second World War; is one life-line we have, but the youth of today can't point to the Falklands conflict or the First Gulf War and complain that their birth was accelerated by a necessity to respawn the population after a devastation.

Such devastation of the population has not happened since the First World War and the following Spanish Flu epidemic.

Could it happen again?  Perhaps... Will I be contributing children to repopulate?  No.  And will I cry that today we have iPads whilst when I was born we didn't even have an Apple 2?... No, of course I won't.

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