Cultural Revolutions

Taken Over

The Baby-Boomer generation (heard that phrase much lately?) has now taken over government, along with everything else, and what a spectacle this turn of events provides us. If we use boomer members of the dominant media culture as a model for the generation's sensibilities, and use the dominant media culture's reaction to Bill Clinton as a reflection of boomer values, what have we learned during the past year about Bill Clinton, baby boomers, and the dominant media culture? My fellow Americans, we've learned that all three need to get a grip.

Baby boomers have been described, by boomers themselves and not without pride, as the most self-obsessed generation in history, the very assertion of which is proof of the claim. One characteristic of self-obsession is psychological projection, and boomers, via their media representatives, projected everything onto an ever-willing, ever-recipient Bill Clinton: their emotional vanity (read sensitivity), their intellectual conceit (read brilliance), and their moral expediency (read realism).

During the presidential campaign, journalists—male journalists—wrote about Bill Clinton like high-schoolers with crushes: limp with infatuation. It was all rather shocking until one realized it wasn't journalism being practiced here; it was self-worship once removed. It wasn't enough for the media elite to justify Clinton's past behavior;...

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