Heather du Plessis-Allan is a columnist for the Herald on Sunday

Heather du Plessis-Allan: Why baby boomers suck

We millennials have ourselves to blame if we prioritise Pokemon Go and selfies over voting to change. Photo / AP
We millennials have ourselves to blame if we prioritise Pokemon Go and selfies over voting to change. Photo / AP

Almost exactly nine months after World War II ended, Donald Trump may have been the first of his generation to arrive.

The baby boomers are the children born immediately after the war, and Donald didn't wait a day longer than he needed to.

It's as if he has every defining characteristic of his generation rolled into one person, so if you want to understand why my generation calls his the worst generation ever, take a look at the Don.

He's rich, he's opinionated, he's vain, and he's had a grand old time divorcing his way through life.

Mostly, millennials are envious of baby boomers because they're the wealthiest generation yet. We also resent them because they used up all the free tertiary education this country had to offer.

They bought up all the houses in Auckland. They burned so many tonnes of carbon driving themselves to and from homeware stores that we all risk roasting to death. They have not finished yet. They're about to bankrupt the country by claiming superannuation the rest of us will never get.

But they're not the worst generation ever. My generation is.

Millennials are the children of the baby boomers, born between 1982 and about 20 years later, and we're a whining, distractible and lazy addition to the planet.

Hear all that complaining about Auckland's over-priced housing market? That's my generation making the noise.

My generation is asking for fast trains around the city and apartment blocks in walking distance of their jobs. All good ideas, but we're not going to get what we want, because of Pokemon Go.

When millennials say they want houses to become more affordable, they're really saying they want house prices to fall.

But that would make the baby boomers who own the houses sad.

The Government doesn't want the baby boomers to feel sad, because they won't vote for a party that makes them poorer.

We can keep asking for a fast train to Hamilton, or decent buses around Auckland, or rail between the country's biggest city and its airport, but we're not going to get them.

Baby boomers like cars. They don't care if they sit in traffic jams, as long as they're inside that comfortable car.

So the Government spends money on roads instead.

Those apartment blocks we want, unfortunately, block the morning sun from the bay windows in the baby boomers' villas. So that's not going to happen. Baby boomers tell us to build another suburb and buy a comfortable car.

You could almost feel sorry for the younger generations, held hostage by their uber-wealthy parents.


Millennials have some great ideas, but there's always a zubat to catch. Or a selfie to snap from a dozen different angles to get it right. Or a Tinder profile to agonise over for maximum pulling power.

The biggest mistake millennials make is they can't be arsed voting.

It's not that their parents have special powers of rearranging the planet to suit their own lifestyles, it's just that they vote.

At the last election, the biggest turnout of any one age group was 65-69-year-olds. Eighty-eight per cent of them voted.

By contrast, 62 per cent of 25-29-year-olds voted.

If every enrolled millennial banded together with Generation X - the people born between us and our parents, who no one ever remembers - we would outnumber the baby boomers and the old folks by about 200,000 votes.

We could vote for politicians who promise cheaper houses, better trains and inner-city living.

So no more complaining about Auckland's house prices. Just vote.

And when we have the power, we can get the baby boomers back for ruining our cities. We'll start by cutting their Super.

- Herald on Sunday

Get the news delivered straight to your inbox

Receive the day’s news, sport and entertainment in our daily email newsletter

Heather du Plessis-Allan is a columnist for the Herald on Sunday

Heather du Plessis-Allan is a thirty-something trying very hard to avoid growing up. So far it’s working, except for the husband, the mortgage and the proper job. She lives between Auckland and Wellington. When she’s not writing for the Herald on Sunday, she co-hosts TV3’s 7pm current affairs programme Story.

Read more by Heather du Plessis-Allan

© Copyright 2016, NZME. Publishing Limited

Assembled by: (static) on production bpcf03 at 23 Oct 2016 22:45:06 Processing Time: 46ms