“What about our kids and grandkids?”
We’ve heard it countless times on campaign trails and in the chambers of Congress. It usually follows warnings of America’s unsustainable finances, severe demographic imbalances, or scandalous government waste. “What about our kids and grandkids?” is both sentimental and symbolic. A feel-good cause that everyone can relate to.
But behind closed doors when looking at the actions needed to actually fix the problems that will harm “our kids and grandkids,” elected officials ask different questions – “But, what about my voters?” “But, what about my donors?” “But, what about my job?”
The symbolic gesture of caring for “our kids and grandkids” takes a backseat to the need to win the next election. Cutting spending could lose the endorsement of an interest group. Eliminating a loophole could mean losing a donor. Reforming entitlements could lose the election. It’s settled. Keep adding to the debt – “our kids and grandkids” is just rhetorical anyway.
So here we are. Thousands of recommendations from government oversight agencies that could save hundreds of billions left untouched. A $666 billion annual deficit climbing towards $1 trillion. A $20 trillion national debt with $100 trillion in unfunded promises coming down the pike. The baby boomer retirement wave that has been foreseen for decades commencing. And not a single plan from either party to ensure the future of “our kids and grandkids” is secure.
The institutions that drive our political discussion and public policy making process are clearly not designed to take care of “our kids and grandkids.” They are built to win two-day news cycles and two-year election cycles. Its a prolonged tug-of-war based on partisanship and tribalism – each group marching out their armies of politicians, economists, strategists, and followers to try to defeat their opponent and win the battle of the moment. With every battle focusing solely on the present, the outcomes are coming at the expense of the future. Even though every decision made today directly impacts it, no one truly and consistently has the economic opportunity and livelihoods of “our kids and grandkids” at heart.
But here’s the thing – millennials and generation Z are the kids and grandkids! Far from being rhetorical speech devices, we have views, voices, and a vote.
Millennials are the largest generation in America but the least represented in Washington. There are many organizations telling us why we should join this party or that cause. But there isn’t anyone advocating for the interest of younger Americans. They just want us to join the back and forth of today and forget about our potential for tomorrow. It’s no wonder that 71 percent of millennials believe that neither party represents us!
Our goal is to help young Americans understand and take active ownership in discussions on the national debt, unfunded liabilities, civics, and federal program (mis)management – discussions that directly affect our future. In a world that is increasingly polarized, we will endeavor to do so with objectivity and independence.
Our goal is to help young Americans understand and take active ownership in discussions on the national debt, unfunded liabilities, civics, and federal program (mis)management – discussions that directly affect our future.
While we don’t expect young Americans to agree on everything – there is one thing we can agree on: our government must be held accountable and our leaders should not stick us with the bill for their poor decisions. Headlines of massive deficits and government waste warrant more than an eyeroll. They demand accountability and action. Our futures depend on it.
Breaking through the short-term driven incentives that drive D.C. will not be easy. Nor will it be quick. But inaction leaves the fates of young Americans in someone else’s hands. The only way young Americans can save our future from its current dreary destiny is to start pursuing a better one today. And maybe even have a little fun along the way. That is our mission.
Welcome to Pursuit.