Post Continues Effort to Promote Generational Conflict

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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.