CEPR - Center for Economic and Policy Research


En Español

Em Português

Other Languages

Home Publications Blogs Beat the Press Post Continues Effort to Promote Generational Conflict

Post Continues Effort to Promote Generational Conflict

Thursday, 13 June 2013 04:36

The Post ran an article highlighting new data from the Census Bureau showing that the number of white people who died last year exceeded the number who were born. It concludes the piece by citing William Frey, a demographer at Brookings:

"the natural decrease in whites suggests that aging whites will increasingly come to rely on the younger, mainly minority population to underwrite social programs that will sustain them."

While this is true of social programs like Social Security and Medicare, this statement would also be true of stockholders who are even more disproportionately white than the elderly population, especially when ownership is measured in dollar terms. If the implication of Frey's statement is that changing demographics could be the basis for future social conflict the more obvious locus would be the portion of national income siphoned off by stockholders than the benefits going to retirees.

While minorities can anticipate benefiting in their old age from Social Security and Medicare, and from the insurance they provide against disability and early death throughout their working lifetimes, most will not ever benefit to any significant extent from stock ownership. This would suggest that if there is an increasing basis for conflict between whites and minorities the more obvious area of contention would be the rules that have increased corporate profits at the expense of wages (e.g. fiscal and monetary policies that foster high unemployment, too big to fail banks, increased patent and copyright protection) rather than government social programs. 

Comments (2)Add Comment
For Generational War Bait, Red Meat Comes in More Colors than Red
written by Last Mover, June 13, 2013 7:32
America has been a sucker for this stuff every since the media was taken over lock, stock and barrel by political right wing pundits dishing out a scare a day to keep the literates away.

Spicing up the already hopelessly flawed economic generational conflict with racism is not that much different than what just happened with the NSA scandal and Edward Snowden.

Note the hysteria over Snowden's top security clearance by one who dropped out of high school. Contrast that with the same media pundits who routinely glorify economic superstars who rose from the bottom and dropped out of school somewhere along the line and still beat the system.

Future social conflict? Caused by non-white races supporting an aging white race? Where both generations have already been conned into believing it's the superstars of the 1% who create all the economic opportunities in the first place?

Who are the real Edward Snowden traitors here?
written by watermelonpunch, June 13, 2013 8:32
I'm starting to wonder if journalists are scared that they will not have too much clout or fame if people actually decide to come together more. ^^

Write comment

(Only one link allowed per comment)

This content has been locked. You can no longer post any comments.


Support this blog, donate
Combined Federal Campaign #79613

About Beat the Press

Dean Baker is co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research in Washington, D.C. He is the author of several books, his latest being The End of Loser Liberalism: Making Markets Progressive. Read more about Dean.