Megalogenis messes up the generation game
George Megalogenis is a smart and insightful writer, so I opened his new book The Australian Moment with anticipation. Alas, the very first sentence is the most tiresome of generation game cliches
Every rich nation reveals its character in its most selfish generation – the baby boomers
Showing that invoking the word “generation” instantly reduces your IQ by about 50 points, Megalogenis goes on to support his claim by a discussion of the results of a poll of voters taken in 1972, the year Gough Whitlam was elected, and the year before his government lowered the voting age from 21 to 18.
The baby boom began in 1946, when returning members of the armed services started having big families. The end is usually placed somewhere between 1960 and 1963.
Whichever end date you choose, even the many boomers who were still in primary school ought to have been capable of doing the subtraction that would inform George that anyone born after 1951 (that is, the vast majority of boomers) was not a voter in 1972.