Heather du Plessis-Allan’s latest column attacking those ungrateful Millennial’s who have dared to voice their lack of a future by being locked out of home ownership has some valid insights.
The first is about Millennial’s and their entitlement…
But now I have a sneaking suspicion the very loudest complainers are actually a bunch of entitled brats.
…as the first user pays generation, Millennial’s have no idealogical compass, politics is just another brand competing for attention in a neoliberal hyper individualised narcissistic mass consumer culture that Millennials have been birthed and bred inside.
Look at Millennial groups like Generation Zero or Millennial media like ‘Auckland Transport Blog/Greater Auckland’ or Spinoff, it’s middle class kids screaming for the same middle class privileges that Boomers have, it’s not about social justice or equality, it’s all ‘where’s my share of the privilege’.
That is a product of the user pays culture they’ve been brought into. Pointing out the selfishness of a consumer culture that society helped build however is a bit like blaming the P addict while you sell them meth.
Likewise, claiming Millennial’s suffer from entitlement is a bit rich when compared to the entitlement of Boomers…
…but let’s put aside selfish kids who were warped by user pays and let’s put aside the selfishness of boomers who pulled up the ladder behind them of all those state subsidisations of their lives via fully funded universal social services which have put many of them in such a strong economic position.
Let’s look at du Plessis-Allan’s main argument…
What was a surprise in the figures, though, was how long we’ve had a problem, with hardly anyone complaining.
All the way back in March 2003, 74 per cent of Auckland buyers already couldn’t afford a home.
Back then there were a smattering of news stories, and even the odd political speech, but nothing like the noise that you’d expect three-quarters of the city’s entry level buyers to make.
Which means that all the noise in recent years has been generated by the 12 per cent of first home buyers cut out of the market since 2003.
…I’d suggest that the lack of any critical voices over the years has nothing to do with Millennial privilege, and has everything to do with the shattering of gatekeeper media from directing the debate with the invention of social media.
Millennial’s have every right to make their voices heard loudly and angrily over the utter failure of the market when it comes to home ownership, and if they are forcing gatekeeper media to respond to their concerns, good!
Trying to claim that the voiceless masses are the real victims here as du Plessis-Allan does confuses things and distracts from some valid points.
Auckland desperately needs to start building not only more affordable homes, more state homes and more emergency shelters, they also need to start building more houses for Government workers like Teachers, Nurses, Firefighters and Police…
To do that, we have to have a grown up conversation about the fact houses in central Auckland will probably – short of a massive economic upset – never be affordable again. They’ll never go back to the prices my grandparents paid for their Meadowbank brick and tile in the 70s.
If we accept that, we accept that some people can’t live in the city without some form of help. And that includes our essential workers on fixed government incomes: police officers, teachers, nurses.
…yes to all of that, but du Plessis-Allan’s desire to attack Millennial’s for having the audacity to point out how unfair the current system is robs this column of its effectiveness.