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Ed Driscoll

Interview: P.J. O’Rourke on The Baby Boom

February 5th, 2014 - 10:52 pm

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If anybody deserves an interview with PJ Media, it’s certainly P.J. O’Rourke — although as I explained to him before we began rolling, while many of us have been inspired by his writing, our Website’s name of course derives from a scandal involving a very different journalist.

O’Rourke has made a career of puncturing the excesses and pretensions of tyrants both domestic and abroad, and anyone who wishes to impose big government statism on others. And since that’s been the goal of the Baby Boom since Tom Hayden wrote the Port Huron Statement in 1962, it’s no surprise that O’Rourke would eventually devote a book to his own generation’s myriad excesses.

During our interview, he’ll discuss:

● Did an AARP membership card lead to Osama bin Laden’s death?

● Were the radical shifts in culture in the 1960s foreshadowed by any previous decades?

● How do the freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior classes of the boomers differ from each other?

● Did the younger boomers learn anything from their older classmates?

● How did growing up as a boomer make P.J., in his college days, a man of the left, and how did he eventually join the vast right-wing conspiracy?

● The secret Hillary Clinton, Cheech & Chong connection, revealed at last!

● Does hashish and dynamite mix?

And much more. Click here to listen:

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Transcript of our interview begins on the following page; for our many previous podcasts, start here and keep scrolling.

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Top Rated Comments   
Sophomore here; and I'm tired too. But unlike mr. O'Rourke's family, mine was not socialistic in nature. We each had (and protected) our private property fiercely. A family of libertarians. And each of us is proudly libertarian to this day, though some have definite Republican leanings.
But the exhaustion comes after nearly 60 years of fighting both left and right for the right of just being left the hell alone.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (19)
All Comments   (19)
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On the Baby Boomer thing... one fascinating trend...

While LFPR, generally, is plummeting, LFPR in the 65+ demographic is steadily climibing.

I know - crazy, huh!!

http://bit.ly/1jdsSQK
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
Maybe not. Sixty-five used to be pretty much around the bend. Now, it's not.

Whether this statistic is a good thing depends on why the old folks are working. Do they want to or do they have to?

I'm approaching that age myself. Well, I've still got more than a decade to go. Right now, I don't feel the need to stop working. Nor do I feel that anyone - my job or my company - owes me anything in my old age. The idea that one should be paid not only for working but for HAVING worked seems strange. I'll probably feel differently when the time comes.

My wife's family are taking care of their mother and father in their old age. We don't have children, so our final years could be problematic. However, it's our responsibility to prepare. If we genuinely NEED help from the government, we'll take advantage of whatever is available. But we don't look on Social Security and Medicare as guaranteed retirement funds.

Right now, I don't see any reason to stop earning my keep.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
We had no kids, and we hope to be financially secure when we finally retire, as long as mr. Obama doesn't steal all the private retirement accounts. . . but every now and then, some whippersnapper in a discussion will get pissy and accuse me of planning to retire on HIS money. I usually tell him, fair is fair. I paid for his schooling all his life (no kids here, remember) through my property taxes, so he can pay for my retirement. Sounds equitable to me.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
"...if people are relieved from the burdens of capitalism, that they will flower..."

No, they will turn into sheep.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
This discussion regarding the Boomer crap-fest during the 1960s is analysed quite well by Diana West in "The Death of the Grown-Up: How America's Arrested Development Is Bringing Down Western Civilization"

One point in this is that if the Greatest Generation who were running the universities by the late 60s had not retreated, we would have a very different America today.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
This.

I have thought this for years but never put the concept into such simple words. Thanks, Craig, for the clarity. Would that they did. Sigh.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
Regarding the problem of Going Down the Tubes like Greece of pre-Thatcher UK: The one big thing which Hiroshima told the world was that if you intended to play Billy-Bad-Ass on the world stage, you have to knock off America FIRST. We won't get a Pearl Harbor two years after the invasion of Poland. The EMP Bombs over North America which announces the New World Order happens FIRST.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
+5, Insightful.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
I have really grown tired of people who treat the various generations as monolithic groups. It is pure intellectual laziness. They invariably assign to these groups the traits of the loudest, silliest, and most obnoxious members of each generation.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
Well, a blast of reason in the thread of the ramblings of a admitted younger leftist. So true.
Only 1 person I knew in the 1969 HS graduating class of the children of the working class, did drugs and he moved there in jr high from kalifas. The children of the administrative class were so dull we could sell them alfalfa and call it Maui Wowi and they would act what they thought was high and we all volunteered to go fight the commies in the Nam. Crass and written to appeal to the current mental midget mind, for money, in lieu of working in a job. This blowhard didn't describe the boomers I know or the ones in my home town or our parents from the greatest generation.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
Don't have the bandwidth to get the audio, but...
PJO'R is the world's most engaging advocate of good wine, whisky, cigars and not-excessively-virtuous women... plus he has (big bonus) an epic pugnacious disdain for Old Europe, especially the French.

Healthy heterosexuals can relax, but must brace for shudders of disapproval from the ranks of dull GOP blowhards.
Hist!... that suppressed shriek... the Mrs Grundy's of the land lunge for the sal volatile...duck'n'cover...sal si puedes, muchachos.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
I mean, we’re going to have to have some sort of crisis, maybe it’ll be a Greece-like crisis, or maybe it’ll be a like a Thatcher’s England crisis, but it’s not going to be pretty when it happens.

I think we’ll endure it. And I think we’ll get through it fine. I think we’ll probably return to some better thinking about politics after it. But there’s no doubt it’s going to be extremely painful when it happens.


I wish I could be as optimistic as O'Rourke about getting through the crisis fine when it comes. I also have grave doubts that we're going to return to some better thinking after that. Although Thatcher's successor John Major surprised everyone by squeaking to a victory, the Labour Party utterly demolished them in the next election and Britain had over a decade of Tony Blair and Gordon Brown. Thatcher was loathed by the Left, even though she had left politics, for the pro-capitalist policies she had implemented and they wouldn't say a good word about her even when she died. I believe she's still felt to be a virtual Antichrist to this day. It certainly doesn't sound like Britain returned to a better way of thinking about things after their crisis....
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
Indeed. There's a pattern in both British and American politics: Vote for people with the "right" (i.e., leftist) ideas; give them time to really screw things up; bring in a Churchill, Reagan, or Thatcher to clean up the mess even though they hold the "wrong" ideas; once the mess is cleaned up, vote them out and repeat.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
By the way - would be good to ask Mr. O'Rourke about the crazy Cheerios flap and life & times in general these days... His scatter-thought shots twould be welcome.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
I am a tail-end boomer and one tired old lady. Mr. O'Rourke is interesting but - what is the point? We need our kids, So, where do we go from here?

Do we take Ayn Rand vitamins and start anew? Do we cave and tuck in? I honestly don't know anymore.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
This is what works for me Aunt Holly. Enjoy and nurture the kids, every day. Enjoy living, commenting, church or lodge fellowship with like minded people, and being alive in the greatest country in the world. The future will work out, or not; there will be some chaos that can be mitigated with a team called family, pay some attention to the daily pulse of the world and how it will effect you locally, plant a garden. Don't cave, fight the good fight but only on the day it arrives, and adjust.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
Sophomore here; and I'm tired too. But unlike mr. O'Rourke's family, mine was not socialistic in nature. We each had (and protected) our private property fiercely. A family of libertarians. And each of us is proudly libertarian to this day, though some have definite Republican leanings.
But the exhaustion comes after nearly 60 years of fighting both left and right for the right of just being left the hell alone.
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
my classmate's half-sister makes $81 an hour on the laptop . She has been out of a job for six months but last month her paycheck was $20617 just working on the laptop for a few hours. try this
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> www.Green48.com
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
Then stand aside and make way for those who do. P'raps you'd be happier floating around with the tired old trouts at lucianne.com?
29 weeks ago
29 weeks ago Link To Comment
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