The Conversation

Are young voters starting to bail out on the Left?

Generation Opportunity notes that the latest round of polls show President Obama dropping especially hard among young voters - 17 points over the last month, according to CNN.  Generation Opportunity president Evan Feinberg saw this poll confirming "a trend we have been noticing on the ground for quite some time now: young people are very concerned about a government that they see as bloated, inefficient - and, in some cases, threatening to its citizens."

"The recent scandals have only served to reinforce these views," Feinberg continued.  "There’s a reason my generation has such a libertarian streak – we’re naturally distrustful of government power and not convinced that those in positions of authority always have our best interests at heart."

I'd like to think so, but frankly that "libertarian streak" has been very difficult to detect lately.  How many of those feisty young libertarians drop their love of small-government independence in a hot second when the discussion turns to student loans?  

The problem is that young people (and a lot of other Americans) express distaste for the overtly domineering aspects of Big Government, but they don't always refine that distaste into effective political opposition... and they generally support the lesser intrusions that build up the Leviathan State, until its shadow becomes terrifying.  It took many years of activist government and social-engineering tax laws to build the monster Internal Revenue Service that turned against every group that really does have a "libertarian streak," with enough force to suppress votes in the 2012 election. 

Young voters seem especially vulnerable to the fantasy of big, accountable, friendly government.  They still think you can get the velvet glove without the mailed fist that inevitably lurks within it.  They shouldn't be waking up and getting angry because of NSA surveillance, or even the IRS scandal.  They should have long ago rebelled against a system expressly designed to bleed them dry, in order to subsidize today's vote-buying activities.  Every aspect of our decaying socialist democracy is designed to fleece young people - from the Social Security and Medicare benefits they'll never get, to the ObamaCare they'll be subsidizing, for the benefit of older Americans.  Even those federally fudged student loans are bait wrapped around a very sharp hook of debt dependency.  Ask your parents how much they paid for college, kids.

I suspect a great deal of Obama's poll drop among young voters, and the slide he's experienced over most demographics, is more a result of exasperation and mockery directed at his "buck never got hear" scandal defense.  He's worked to firewall himself from every one of the scandals that popped up since his re-election.  That might have kept the general public from personally associating him with each individual scandal, but the cumulative Empty Chair effect is overwhelming, and it's melting away whatever trust he still retained from everyone outside his personality cult.  Young voters are especially likely to greet this type of excuse with derision, especially since they're not far removed from being routinely scolded for such evasive behavior by their parents.


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