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The Massive Pessimism of the Millennials

BEGIN TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: I've got a story here.  I've got so many stacks I don't know what Stack it's in.  But this was a primary item I was gonna discuss today.  Here's the first of it.  "Democrats Have Taken Advantage of Millennials."  This is a story by Alex Smith who's a national chairman of College Republicans.  This is fascinating in and of itself, but that is just one aspect.  I had a bunch of thoughts that flowed from this.  What I concluded from this -- and, by the way, I've written an op-ed for a Millennials website, and I've been paying a lot of attention to this, and what I have detected is that there is a massive pessimism out there, folks.

Young people do not at all think they have a future economically.  They see themselves burdened with student loan debt that they can never repay. They see themselves in many cases with degrees that don't matter to anything.  You have the Democrat Party -- Obama exempted -- the Democrat Party, news media focuses on pessimism, they focus on what's wrong, by definition.  Everybody in this country is inundated with negativity at every turn.  Newspapers, television, movies, TV shows, songs, whatever, the negative pessimism is there, and young people are just obsessed.  The number of Millennials, that the age group now up to, 18 to 25 I think right now, living at home still. 

And the first thought that I had about this was I recall what Steven Rattner said as Obama's first car czar.  He's Little Pinch Sulzberger's best friend in New York, Steven Rattner.  He's an investment banker of sorts.  He's worked at Lazard, wherever the liberals need a Mr. Fix It, this guy goes there.  He was talking about Detroit.  And he said, "Aside from participating in elections, the people of Detroit are no more to blame for what happened to their city than people that don't live there."  And I said, "But isn't that the point?  They voted for it, they are responsible for it!  What do you mean, aside from participating in the democratic process, they're not to blame?  They voted for it!  The people in Detroit voted for it!"

I'm sorry to yell.  I know I'm scaring 25-year-old women.  They voted for it.  Well, the Millennials voted for this.  So when I hear that they're depressed because they don't think they have a future, they don't think they have an opportunity for a future, because there isn't a growing economy, there's no place for them, there's no opportunity, I get frustrated. And I say, "Yeah, well, you voted for it!  When are you gonna wake up and realize that you are partly to blame.  You voted for this." 

Then I remember the Limbaugh Theorem, where Obama is not held accountable for any of this, especially among people that voted for him.  He's constantly campaigning as far as people that voted for the guy are concerned.  He feels the same way as they do.  He's worried.  He's pessimistic.  He's trying to fix it.  But then intellectually, and this is the trap I fall into, intellectually -- by intellectually, I mean, thinking about it.  They elected it, and they're living it.  When they voted for Obama, they thought the exact opposite of this was gonna happen.  I'm sure they thought they were voting for a brighter future, sunshine, lollipops and roses. They thought they were voting for panacea, utopia or whatever, and they got the opposite of what they wanted.  And there was a part of me, "You're all pessimistic, I don't feel sorry for you.  You voted for it; live it."  And it's frustrating that they don't see that. 

It's frustrating that they're not asking themselves if they're partially responsible for this.  And I get nuts, I go crazy wanting to know why these young people that are very smart haven't figured out that voting for liberals and Democrats is what's making them pessimistic.  And then I catch myself, and I remember that African-Americans have been voting for Democrats for 50 years and haven't seen why they're in such a mess, so why should I expect Millennials to see it?  And practically every other Democrat special interest group is in the same boat.  They've been voting for Democrats for years under the premise that the Democrats are gonna protect 'em, elevate 'em, get even with their enemies, and all that happens is their lives get worse, they become more dependent.  And yet they never blame the Democrats. 

So I asked myself, why am I asking the Millennials to understand what they've done?  Well, that then dovetails into a discussion of the Republican brand, where I think it is safe to say that as we sit here today -- anything can change in politics obviously -- but as we sit here today, young people and women are just closed-minded when it comes to the Republican Party.  They're not even willing to listen, so firm are they in their mind that the Republican Party is evil, rotten, uncool, unhip, whatever.  So you could almost say it boils down to a sense of personal responsibility. 

Why is the Washington Post in trouble?  Could part of the answer to the question be that the reporters, the people that work there who put out the product don't understand why their paper is such a mess?  You think they're asking themselves what they're doing wrong?  Guarantee you they're not.  They think they're great.  They're elites, after all.  They're special.  The paper's in trouble 'cause you're stupid, you're not smart enough to see how good it is, how brilliant they are.  It's not their problem.  So you combine all of these things, the sense of personal responsibility, the desire for utopia, panacea, the belief that Obama's the guy who's gonna deliver that, combined with the Republican Party is a bunch of old-fashioned, stuck-in-the-mud, uncool, fat white guys, and where are we?  We've got utter pessimism out there. 

Look, you and I, the people that did not vote for Obama, we're pessimistic because we are asking ourselves why is the rest of the country such a bunch of idiots.  Can I be honest?  That's what we're depressed about. How in the hell did this happen?  How is this country populated with so many stupid idiots?  They are depressed because the promises they thought were made to them haven't come true, and they're now thinking it isn't possible.  There is no future.  To me, this is ripe for good old-fashioned, plain conservatism, optimistic, you-can-do-it kind of conservatism, optimistic you-must-do-it kind of conservatism, optimistic it-can-be-done kind of conservatism, optimistic belief in individuals, that they can do it.  Pep talk time, in other words.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH: This piece by Alex Smith. It's a column in The Daily Caller. She's the national chairman of College Republicans.  And, as such, is in the Millennial generation.  Tizen is the name of the Samsung operating system, Snerdley, 'cause Samsung doesn't like being a prisoner to Google.  Here's another thing.  One more thing.  If you buy a Samsung Galaxy phone at AT&T they're gonna put their layer on top of Google with their special apps and even get to the Google operating system you've gotta drill down.

original

If you have a Galaxy S4 from Verizon, they're gonna put their specific apps on it. Apple doesn't permit that.  You buy an iPhone, and no matter where you buy it it's identical to an iPhone bought anywhere else.  That's open versus closed.  Alex Smith.  Here's a pull quote. She's a Millennial and she's discussing Millennials and what they think.  "I do not believe," she writes, "that the president and Democrats want to see my generation fail, but I do believe they have taken advantage of us.

"They used us to fund a costly health care plan by demanding higher premiums of young adults and by monopolizing the student loan industry. They mortgaged away our future to spend more now while adding to our share of the national debt. They also have failed to address broken entitlement programs like Social Security and Medicare, which are kept afloat by contributions from younger generations, but will be insolvent by the time we reach retirement age." 

That's a pull quote.  The title of Alex Smith's piece is, "Democrats Have Taken Advantage of Millennials." (interruption) Alex is female, okay.  Sorry.  H.R. just told me Alex is female.  Thank you for that.  Did I say "he"? (interruption)  Okay.  Well, not that I'm disagreeing, but how do you know that Alex is...? (interruption) You know her?  Oh, okay.  There was a... (interruption)  So here I talking about Alex Smith and I mighta said "he," so Keith from the website staff apparently ran down the hall to H.R. and said, "Alex a female! Tell Rush Alex is a female!" 

Anyway, I happy to be corrected.

I don't want to be wrong. 

Forgive me for the incorrect assumption.  So it must be Alexandra, or Alexis -- one of my all-time, Top 10 favorite female names, by the way.  Okay, here's what she writes.  This is the open of the piece: "Today, one in three of my fellow Millennials will wake up in their parents’ home. Some of them have a job, but the vast majority are either unemployed or have dropped out of the labor force all together. Most graduated from high school and spent some time in college; a few even have advanced degrees. Of those who took out student loans, they owe an average of $26,000.  That is where the 'lost generation' ... stands in 2013.

"In the past two presidential elections, my generation delivered victories for Democrats in the White House, Senate and House of Representatives. With hopeful and stirring rhetoric, they promised us a brighter tomorrow."  See?  See?  A brighter tomorrow. 
"Indeed, President Obama, whose own story embodies the American Dream --"  No, it doesn't, Alex.  Sorry.  But I digress.  "Indeed, President Obama, whose own story embodies the American Dream, told graduates at the University of Michigan in 2010 that the ability to shape our own destiny is what 'sets us apart' as Americans. Casting nearly 5 million more votes for President Obama over Governor Romney this past election, my generation undoubtedly delivered for Democrats. Have they delivered for us?

"According to the latest Pew Research report, the number of Millennials living at home with their parents soared to a record 21.6 million, up from 18.5 million in 2007. Last month, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced that student loan debt surpassed the 1 trillion dollar mark. With the impending implementation of the President’s healthcare plan, the number of part-time jobs has exploded at the expense of the growth of full-time jobs, and the young and healthy can expect to see our premiums rise. The newest jobs report shows that youth unemployment remains nearly double the national average, and a recent Gallup survey found that only 43.6 percent of 18-29 year-olds are employed full-time. As a result, Millennials are deferring major life decisions like marriage and home ownership at record rates.

"Rather than answering my earlier question with a resounding, partisan 'no,' let me offer an alternative. I do not believe that the president and Democrats want to see my generation fail, but I do believe they have taken advantage of us. They used us to fund a costly healthcare plan by demanding higher premiums of young adults and by monopolizing the student loan industry. They mortgaged away our future to spend more now while adding to our share of the national debt. They also have failed to address broken entitlement programs like Social Security and Medicare, which are kept afloat by contributions from younger generations, but will be insolvent by the time we reach retirement age.

"But the president and Democrats have not failed us because they are Democrats; rather, their policies have not worked for our generation because their ideas are old. They rely on top-down, artificial policies from the industrial past, rather than adapting the needs of a modern society with organic, bottom-up solutions."  Calm down, Snerdley.  (laughing)  I don't know how old Alex is, but she's in her twenties, and you have to make some allowances.  Snerdley's about had a fit here when he heard me read "but the president and Democrats have not failed us because they're Democrats."  Yes, they have Alex, and in the paragraph above you just listed why.  It is Democrats who have failed you.  Democrats stand for something.  Democrat policies are something.  They are specific, and they are exactly what you described in the previous paragraph. 

It's the Democrats who have failed you.  But I don't think the word is "failed" you.  I think they've screwed you.  I don't think failed you.  I think they've lied to you.  I think they've misrepresented themselves to you.  I think they've given you false hope.  They've made phony promises.  They've clearly taken advantage of your desire for a brighter future, a happier tomorrow.  They've clearly made you think they are the ones who can provide that when, Alex, you're the only one who can.  You're the only one that can give yourself a better tomorrow.  Washington is not interested in you having a brighter future.  They say they are.  They're interested in you maintaining their power.  But I digress.  Let me get to the last paragraph. 

"The success stories from our generation have unquestionably followed the latter."

Meaning organic bottom-up solutions, success stories are bottom-up solutions.  "Whether it is the grassroots efforts that have built massive social networks, or by technological improvements that have allowed us [to] customize our lives like at no other time in history, these sorts of innovations define our generation. While one-size-fits-all-government has outlived its usefulness for the generation that is as diverse as the playlists on our iPods, true hope and change will come in the form of leaders and policies that embolden individuals to unleash natural growth."

That's not Democrats, Alex.  The Democrats are not about unleashing anything individualistic.  They're about suppressing that.  I have to take a brief time-out.  There is so much to say here.  But I don't stand to gain anything by saying it.  Not a thing. 

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH:  I'm gonna have to really think about replying to this, otherwise all I'm gonna do is antagonize Alex, and that is the last thing I want to do, believe me.  I want to do the exact opposite.  But just one thing.  She describes the grassroots effort that have built massive social networks as grassroots bottom-up efforts, as though that's new.  Facebook, Zuckerberg, Harvard, nerd kid gets in an argument Winklevoss, whatever happens there, happens. Facebook is born. He's a student, drops out. And to Alex, that's an example of the bottom-up rather than the top-down, which means Washington. 

Now, all she's describing there -- I think this is fairly important.  What she's describing is entrepreneurism.  Yet I get the impression -- and I could be wrong -- I get the impression that she thinks it's unique.  Most everything of substantial innovative content comes from the bottom-up.  It's what entrepreneurism is.  But if you stop and think, she's probably in the neighborhood of 24, most of her adult life you think she's heard much about entrepreneurism?  If she has, she's heard it impugned and maligned and ridiculed, and yet when she sees it, she recognizes it as great and filled with value, and she thinks it's new.  She thinks Zuckerberg did something that nobody else has done.  That fascinates me.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH:  As I say, folks, I'm gonna think about the Millennials piece before reacting or responding in greater detail, because it's all fascinating to me.  You know, somebody, 24, what have they been taught?  What's their educational perspective?  What have they been taught about America?  What have they been taught about entrepreneurism?  The Democrat Party has clearly shafted 'em.  Now, maybe she just doesn't want to write that.  Anyway, I'll do a little bit more with this after I have spent some serious time with it.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH:  No, no, no.  I'm gonna talk about all this tomorrow.  This pessimism that so many people feel, many of them Obama voters, many of them young people, many of them young women, by the way.  We need to talk about it, because the message of optimism sells, if it's not rooted in phoniness.  But optimism's hard.  You don't need a book to learn how to fail 'cause everybody does it.  Everybody knows how.  You don't need a book to learn how to be negative.  That seems to come naturally. 

But people who have written effective books on how to think positively are millionaires, because it apparently is not a natural inclination for most people.  But they want to, if they can be properly inspired. And that's what I mean, now is the best time in the world to contrast what we believe as conservatives, with exactly what's happening.  We don't have to compare ourselves to a theory.  The theory is in place now, and it's a disaster.  The liberal theory is a disaster.

BREAK TRANSCRIPT

RUSH:  You know, I just realize I make an assumption that is really wrong.  I assume that a 24-year-old conservative is the same as a 60-year-old conservative, and that's not true.  It needs to be constantly taught, which is what we'll do.  We'll just keep doing it. 

END TRANSCRIPT

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