Amy Choate-Nielsen: The age of entitlement: Selfishness is rampant, but can be corrected, experts say

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  • Gildas LOGAN, UT
    May 20, 2012 10:24 p.m.

    I was well into this article before finding the expected big lie about social security. Too often these days when a Republican or Democrat sneers "entitlement" he really means social security.

    FICA contributors have built up a surplus of 2.4 trillions, good enough to pay a generation of retirees at current levels with annual cola's to recompense inflation, and with more funds still coming in, with the premium expediently and perfidiously reduced by the government, which will simply disappoint coming generations of their expectations.

    Premiums have, up to now, been prodigious and repayments to retirees at a fair level. This is not Medicaid, since it is currently well in the black, but government has expediently used the funds for other purposes and issued treasury bonds to guarantee repayment. I hope the writers have no such government bonds as it seems the writers are suggesting introducing the unprecedented novelty of defaulting on them.

  • Still Blue after all these years Kaysville, UT
    May 20, 2012 1:36 p.m.

    I find both the article and the comments at a minimum humorous. When anyone says the youth of today seem entitled, I wonder what world they live in. They are neither entitled or selfish. The most entitled and selfish generation ever, and it's not even close, is the currently retired generation. And unless something dramatic changes, the baby boom generation will become the 2nd most selfish and entitled. The current retired generation takes social security and Medicare money totaling more than a trillion a year, having never put anything near that amount into the system. And they will do anything to protect it. Never mind that they and potentially baby boomers don't care that many future generation wil have to pay for their selfishness. Stealing from those that Cannot vote or are as yet unborn is the height of selfishness and entitled.

  • Joggle Clearfield, UT
    May 20, 2012 12:24 p.m.

    @no fit in SG

    Wait in line? We already have! Lines move forward! Those who don't move forward....stay behind. I can't speak for all of the older generation because some of the older generations do appear selfish, bigoted and entitled...but as with most any generation....there will always be those that get left behind because of their own choice to NOT advance. There are areas I'm more advanced in than people younger than putting an entire generation under under the same label is a false perception. Some day you will be where we are....and then who are you going to blame....and who is going to blame you? Think about it!

  • no fit in SG St.George, Utah
    May 20, 2012 9:19 a.m.

    Observing the 60+ crowd freaking out because they have to wait in a line. Entitled to take cuts to the front, are they? Perhaps they can't understand the changing mindset of society. They may have been expecting the life that the "Jetson's" presented to them in the 1960's.
    Many have been unable to adjust to the increasingly faster pace of life, and to our rainbow of ethnicity of those who will be assisting them.
    Some jealousy, perhaps?
    Some of the older generation appear selfish, bigoted and entitled, as well. Earlier generations were simply not prepared for life in 2012.

  • gdog3finally West Jordan, Utah
    May 20, 2012 3:30 a.m.

    I am thrilled the experts tell us we can change. Who are the experts and how are we supposed to think? All of us in harmony with the koombayyah now. This article was too long to even read.

    Seriously, can't people just use the spirit of love and common sense. Sure we will mess up, but is there one method that's right? These same so called experts will tell us it's possible to change what we've already changed in ten more years (if we are still alive after the kids take over in 2012).

    I think the attitudes with kids is not because parents are all doing the same things wrong. Parents have different approaches, methods, and tools. It's the politicians, school board, and psychiatrists that have the protocol of specific agendas. I say they have more to do with what's wrong with society. Or at least what is different in society generation to generation. The powerful make the impact for good or bad.

    As for me, I think the current use of capitalism is benefiting a select few. I thank greedy profiteers in the 1950s that took advantage of patriotism following WWII.

  • Ernest T. Bass Bountiful, UT
    May 19, 2012 8:37 p.m.

    Children have never had patience and have always wanted what they want without having to wait for it.
    The entitled group were those in their 20's during the inflation of the bubble. You would see 25 year old kids with huge houses, two new SUVs with boats and ATVs. It's that entitlement that caused the bubble to begin with.
    It's adults who can't live within their means, children behaving entitled is nothing new.

  • Joggle Clearfield, UT
    May 18, 2012 1:40 p.m.

    It gets aggravating to see accusations and innuendos that the older population (BabyBoomers mainly) are selfish and greedy and are intentionally ruining the future for the younger generations. Apparently those critics aren’t acknowledging that participation was not optional in those programs which the critics now wish to cut; it was mandated by the federal government. You bet I am entitled to Social Security, because an average of 10 percent of my life-long earnings went into the program! Had the government not squandered that money on first one social program after another for the non-working, non-paying segment of the population, but had instead invested it (as it said it would), or had allowed me to invest it, I would have had a large enough fund to not need Social Security. So seniors such as I are entitled to the benefits which we were guaranteed. I'm not a rich person living in luxury and what I do have took hard work, time/patience, and saving to get....while I often see spoiled younger generations going into deep debt simply because they want it now and then Social Security becomes the scapegoat for their selfish greed!

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    Sept. 2, 2011 1:18 a.m.

    Someday the government will really be out of money and pull the plug on handouts. Can anyone see the riots and violence?

  • Sarah B SLC, UT
    Sept. 1, 2011 7:20 p.m.

    I am always very surprised by the expensive and luxurious vacaions I see young couples, some of whom are still in school are taking. Cruises, luxury all inclusive resorts etc. They blog about it and brag about all the room service they ordered. These were trips we took after our kids were grown.

    One young lady I know has medicare to pay for her pregnancies and yet she has money for season tickets to Disneyland and buys expensive souvenirs there. She is offended if she has to pay for a babysitter, expecting others to donate their time to her.

    I also see older people feeling entitled. They have housekeepers and gardeners. In public they feel others should clean up after them and feel no guilt at throwing trash on the floor. It's disgusting regardless of their age.

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    Sept. 1, 2011 3:35 p.m.


    Students are too busy training for the big tests. Big brother is watching the scores. Manners and learning take a back seat.

  • catcrazed Eagle Mountain, UT
    Sept. 1, 2011 2:40 p.m.

    I am a seasoned teacher of fourth graders. My students don't use courtesy words like "please" and "thank you" anymore. They also tell me what they need, rather than courteously ask for what they want. "I need a pencil," instead of "May I have a pencil, please." Then when they receive the pencil, there is no "thank you. To those people who still parent, and still teach manners, hard work, and respect for others, thanks. By the way, I do teach those things in my classroom.

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    Aug. 31, 2011 10:43 p.m.

    Change from JFK to BO:

    Ask not what you can do for your country, but what your country can do for you.

  • Clearwater3 OCONOMOWOC, WI
    Aug. 31, 2011 10:01 p.m.

    "The thing we worry about most is the kids, because they are the ones paying the debt," Richard Eyre said ... "They will be stuck with the bills for our retirement, Social Security and Medicare and the national debt we're ringing up, but on a macro level, we're worried that they're growing up in a society where the model is 'I need to have it right now." I disagree with Richard Eyre's statement and quote ... "Before Social Security about half of our senior citizens lived in poverty. Today, less than 10 percent live in poverty. The most successful program in our nation's history has not contributed one dime to the federal deficit. It has a $2.5 trillion surplus, and it can pay out every nickel owed to every eligible American for at least the next 25 years, according to the Social Security Administration. A recent report from the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office estimated that Social Security is in even better financial shape and can pay all promised benefits until 2038" - Bernie Sanders, Senator VT. I feel this article is biased; and not on par with spoiled children.

  • radically_independent Orem, Utah
    Aug. 31, 2011 7:25 p.m.

    Duck... by the way, what did Marx have to do with this? Just look at the criminal justice systems, and the profiles of those committing crime. What do the vast majority of people have in common with each other, particularly since whites make more than 50 percent of those living at the states lovely facilities.

    Is it their "culture"?

    Partially yes, but i think if you look close enough, you will find something else about the families they came from, and it wasn't where they were born.

    Look at school performance. Take two lilly white schools from two different economic strata, and you tell me what the corrilation to test results is.

  • radically_independent Orem, Utah
    Aug. 31, 2011 7:09 p.m.

    ProudDuck, one more thing. Using your same example, you can also point to Alaska, a state that has next to no minorities, and yet has the 6th highest crime rate in the nation.

    And yes, as you say, Culture is absolutely a driver there. It is the last bastion of the wild west, and with it comes the attitudes and crime that goes along with it. But it is NOT driven by minority status.

    And if you look at the profile of those arrested for crimes in Alsaska, it isn't middle class family people, or well educated. It is those who live blue collar lives and jobs, those on the bottom of the economic scale in Alaska. it is the two together.

    I would love to see an example of a culture where the members are high paid, well educated, and crime levels are also high. Economic condition breeds culture.

  • radically_independent Orem, Utah
    Aug. 31, 2011 6:58 p.m.

    Proud Duck... I will grant you that culture absolutely matters too. White Red neck is more likely to commit crime than a middle class white. But the point is going back to Chucks remarks does RACE or being a minority equal being lazy and feeling entitled.

    Adding your point then, is a black teen from a middle class family just as likely to commit crimes or feel entitled as a black teen from an impoverished family. Can you paint a singular black culture. Is a southern black the same as a mid western black from Iowa? Which culture are you attributing to "minorities".

    My best friend is married to a man who comes from a very affluent Mexican family. Are there kids just as likely to behave as you all brand minorites despite their social position.... because they are culturally hispanic?

    This broad brushing of people, minorities, isn't anything new. Before hispanics and blacks, it was Irish, Polish chinese and Italians... and very much minorities of their time.

    The single biggest indicator of someones likeliness to commit crime is their financial condition and their education. You can find outliers to this, but as a rule, it holds true.

  • TheProudDuck Newport Beach, CA
    Aug. 31, 2011 5:22 p.m.

    "We can debate the cause of poverty, but people in poverty behave the same, regardless of race or ethnic origin."

    Isn't it pretty to think so?

    Marx was wrong. Not everything flows from economics. Culture matters. If the traditions of your fathers are not correct (for lack of a better phrasing), then even controlling for poverty, you will be more likely to suffer from social pathologies like crime and illegitimacy. People in poverty do *not* behave the same, regardless of ethnicity or culture. That's a gross insult to honest poor people (the majority of the poor, incidentally).

    An example? West Virginia has one of the highest rates of poverty in the country, a full five percentage points higher than the national average. Nearly one person in five is poor. The place is 96% white hillbilly.

    Only five states have lower crime rates.

    And it's not just race, either. White Southerners are more likely to commit violent crimes (again, even controlling for race) than white Northerners. Culture matters.

  • radically_independent Orem, Utah
    Aug. 31, 2011 10:33 a.m.

    Hold on, so if I follow Charles logic here, predominately white communities should therefor have little or no people on welfare... or people or unwed pregnancies. Here in Utah valley people below the poverty level or unwed pregnancies simply by virtue that minorities are well under represented and by extension, problem should not exist.

    It is true that the poor statistically are over represented in these cases, but if you look at the poor as a class, regardless of race, the net result is the same. White or minority, results are the same.

    Your last statement is very telling.

    Latest Pew Research numbers show that Obama's negative numbers grew from 42 percent to 49 percent from February 2011 to August 2011 while Republican negative sentiment numbers increased 48 percent to 59 percent. Obama's approval rating dropped from 49% to 43%. Republican leadership approval ratings dropped from 43% down to 34%.

    So toss out your race based numbers all you like - no matter how bad Obama is doing, the "conservatives" are doing worse... no race bias needed.

    We can debate the cause of poverty, but people in poverty behave the same, regardless of race or ethic origin.

  • I M LDS 2 Provo, UT
    Aug. 31, 2011 9:56 a.m.


    Wake up to your narrow and putrid view of reality?

    No thank you!

  • @Charles the greater outdoors, UT
    Aug. 31, 2011 7:49 a.m.


    Dear Duckie: Why do Blacks support Democrats at a rate of 90%?

    What percentage of minorities are on welfare?

    Why do black single women continue to have babies?

    What are the problems of urban cities?

    You can live in denial or you can face the facts. The information is out there if you choose to accept it.

    How is that War on Poverty going?

    How is the free healthcare going?

    Don't forget, Obama was going to pay for everyone's mortgage and put gas in our cars. Just watch the videos on Youtube for you Dear Leader and all that people thought he promised them.

    The government will provide everything for everyone. That's the mantra of your party. Who makes up the Democratic Party?

    Who still supports Obama at a rate of 95%? Why? Because he will steal from Joe the Plumber and give it to his Illegal Alien uncle and aunt!

    Wake up to reality!

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    Aug. 30, 2011 7:41 p.m.

    "It's a fact that minorities want freebies! It's not even up for debate."

    Yes, lets make silly blanket statements. And all the pyramid schemes, those two are led by those dang lazy minorities.... and the likes of Berni Madoff.... minorities too.

    Or stuff like this...

    "Washington, D.C., March 28, 2011 The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced that it has obtained a court order freezing the assets of two online payday loan companies and their owner charged with perpetrating a $47 million offering fraud and Ponzi scheme."

    The dude who did this, John Scott Clark of Hyde Park, Utah - not a minority.

    or how about

    Bret Van Leeuwen, an insurance broker who founded Stratus, is set for a plea hearing June 1 in front of U.S. District Judge Ricardo Urbina, court records show - the complaint - "The president of Utah-based Status Insurance Services is facing insurance fraud charges in Washington federal district court in a scheme that prosecutors said involved false statements made to a regulatory agency here"

    The list goes on and on.

    These are all people who feel they are entitled to others money, and not minorities.

    Stop the silly insulting blanket statements.

  • @Charles the greater outdoors, UT
    Aug. 30, 2011 6:03 p.m.


    oh chinookdoctor: I had you pegged as the feminist BEFORE your 2nd post showed up. I even commented on it but the censors at the Dnews won't post it.

    Gotta love the Mormon feminist. See the anger, envy and coveting in your posts. Your disdain for BYU is noted.

    Your disdain for the stay-at-home mother is noted.

    Your frustration that you aren't a stay-at-home mother is noted.

    I'm not sure what is worse in the LDS church: spoiled children or angry, envious hating feminists.

    Gotta love the "academically well accomplished" comment! Do you look down on the mechanic who fixes your car, refrigerator, dishwasher or anything else that breaks in your home? What about the contractor who built your home? Are they stupid?

    It's a fact that minorities want freebies! It's not even up for debate. They also want everyone to do everything else for them. See the response in New Orleans when Katrina hit.

    How's Compton doing with the inner-city kids? What's the graduation rate of minorities in inner-cities? 15% 25%

    Yes, we get it. You hate BYU, RM's, "spoiled LDS children" who make your primary class miserable.

    Got anything else?

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    Aug. 30, 2011 3:42 p.m.

    FormerSaltlaker - lazy does not equal entitled. We have had lazy people from the beginning of time.

    As to all those who want to politicize this.... if you can show me Republicans\conservatives don't take advantage of entitlements (Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, Unemployment benefits, public education....), then you can talk from a place of authority. But please don't lecture the world saying that everyone else does not match up to you because you like one animal versus another on a bumper sticker. Republicans, Democrats, Liberals and conservatives alike use the system. Conservatives with special needs kids take the same full advantage of the system as do so called liberals.

    So lets stop the silly "i am better than you" games and talk about issues. If all you have is name calling and chest pumping, well then your not adding much except to inflate your own ego.

    There are lazy republicans and democrats, I have both in my family. So lets just stop... please.

  • Kimball Bakersfield, CA
    Aug. 30, 2011 11:01 a.m.

    Some deprivation increased motivation.

  • zym1008 SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Aug. 30, 2011 9:40 a.m.

    One generations luxury is the next's necessity.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    Aug. 30, 2011 6:36 a.m.

    Charles... must you insult people to make your point? Perhaps this is a conversation that evolved away from the original core topic... just perhaps..

    I will say I agree with the core of what you say. My kids have never gotten an allowance, they have jobs that are theirs around the house that they have by virtue of being part of the family. At the same time, they also have opportunity to earn money by doing things that we normally would pay someone else to do if they do it themselves.

    But specifically to this article, yes, there are kids that think the world revolves around them. There always has been, and always will be. The reasons range widely, from parents who never say no to kids who have extrememly strong personalities. My wife has taught for years - and the kids haven't changed all that much. You have the broad spectrum of kids and families in each school.

    I help coach a team of 9/10 year old boys. I would say as a whole the kids are all hard workers, and are decent nice kids. Perhaps it is the kind of kids who play football - who knows.

  • formersaltlaker Clearfield, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 9:23 p.m.

    As a teacher, I see big issues with entitlement. I once had a kid who turned in a short assignment on which he had done no work at all. When I questioned him about this, he shrugged dismissively and asked if he could get half credit for putting his name on his paper. Uh, no. The article notes people with the entitlement mentality often end up financially unstable. Wonder why.

  • chinookdoctor PASADENA, CA
    Aug. 29, 2011 8:35 p.m.

    I was raised in a liberal, feminist home with working parents. My father is a lawyer who loves and reveres women. My parents taught my sisters and I that there are no free rides, we worked hard and all of us are academically well accomplished and have all made great salaries to boot! I think some posters are hinting at the idea that minorities and the working poor are liberals who just want a free ride. I'm a minority who grew up in an inner-city and I can't think of anyone I know who succeeded from there who isn't more diligent than the spoiled members of the church I've met who got a free ride from their parents, no chores and no responsibility at home because mom did it all, barely any debt or no debt because they went to BYU and dad paid it all. Often these kids are the ones my sister who is a university professor has the most trouble with. She has asked me if LDS people spoil their children because she sees entitled RM graduate students who are rude and disrespectful to her and then demand good grades for doing poor work.

  • @Charles the greater outdoors, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 8:31 p.m.

    It's amazing how many of you didn't even read the article. It's clear that so many of you read the headline, then started reading the comments and have missed the point of the article completely.

    Or, there are just a ton of people who have no reading comprehension skills.

    I happen to agree with the point of the article and actually enjoy the tools taught by the Fay's through Love and Logic.

    Today's child is very spoiled and has no interest in working. Today's child doesn't know how to communicate either because of texting, IM'ing and email. They don't know how to have one on one conversations.

    Easy credit cards exacerbated an issue of "I want it now". People never learned how to save. Newlyweds believe they can have the day after their marriage what it took their parents a lifetime to accumulate.

    I don't subscribe to the pay for chores philosophy. It creates lazy children as the article states. I see it all around me. Pay me! How much! You OWE me!

    My children will never go without but they will darn sure learn the value of money and work!

  • chinookdoctor PASADENA, CA
    Aug. 29, 2011 8:19 p.m.

    I see this entitlement a lot in the church; when I joined at age 25 I was pretty horrified that in such a family-centered religious group kids (and adults) were so entitled. My upbringing included getting an allowance, but we had to do chores because we were part of the family, ate the same rice as my parents and most importantly we needed to learn about life. My parent's job was to work, our's was to go to school and to do chores, period. I was lucky to get an allowance and my parents let me know that. I learned to contribute and serve because I respected myself and my home. My husband grew up with no expectations and it has caused a lot of problems for him in life. He' working through the entitlement trap, but it is really hard on everyone around him. I worry about a lot of the stay-at-home moms who do everything for their children and whose husbands never, or rarely, contribute to family chores or child rearing. These kids are the most obnoxious ones in my primary class and often their parents are equally as hard to manage.

  • TheProudDuck Newport Beach, CA
    Aug. 29, 2011 7:46 p.m.

    As I recall, Brigham Young warned that both the rich and the poor could be guilty of covetousness. The poor were covetous of others' wealth, while the rich were covetous of their own.

    An interesting thought.

  • MoJules Florissant, MO
    Aug. 29, 2011 7:45 p.m.

    I have not read the article, but I just showed this picture to my granddaughter, whom I see once a year and has been with me for a week. I asked her what she thought when she saw this little boy and asked if she thought people would want to be with him or give him what he wants. She of course viewed him very negatively and I told her that is what we have been seeing a lot of this week. That really hit home with her and hopefully I won't see anymore folded arms and pouting lips and scrunched face. I let her know that when she is not this way, she is very charming and lovable. So I hope that "a picture", really "is a 1000 words".

  • Jim Dexter Taylorsville, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 7:42 p.m.

    Could this possibly be why hard working Mexicans are taking our jobs?

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    Aug. 29, 2011 6:47 p.m.

    How funny it is to read some who would suggest that "entitlement" happened in the last 36 months under Obama. How twisted a view of the world is that? Does personal honesty play anywhere with this crowd.

    I think the dangers of entitlement come from both sides. There are those who feel entitled because of the abuses their ancestors had to endure. It is not debatable if their families were treated unfairly or unjustly. Are they entitled to what is mine because of it. I don't think so. Are they entitled to a helping had up, as and American I would say yes.... when it comes if the form of equal access and support for education, equal rights to pursue any job, or equal access to opportunity.

    Then there are those who feel they are entitled to all the privileges and benefits of their freedom, and then feel they don't have a responsibility to do for others that which was done for them by previous generations. It is their "money". It is their right to trash resources leaving nothing for the next generation. Their sense of entitlement equals selfishness in the form of lack to country and community.

  • TheProudDuck Newport Beach, CA
    Aug. 29, 2011 6:35 p.m.

    Funny how everybody thinks that "greed" is a big problem, but no one personally thinks he's greedy.

    President Obama said he thought that at some point, you've made enough money. I agree. That point is the point where to get one more dollar, you'd have to do it dishonestly.

  • TheProudDuck Newport Beach, CA
    Aug. 29, 2011 6:28 p.m.

    My brother-in-law, who refuses to work a "demeaning" service job because he is a great (if unrecognized, so far) artistic talent, thinks his mother, and my wife and I, are "selfish" because we won't buy him a house.

  • twinkleberry67 Layton, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 5:47 p.m.

    I worked in child care between the years 88-96 and I so knew this was coming. After being educated in early child development, I was disheartened to find that the pervasive M O was to be the childs best friend and give them anything and everything they want. This pathetic fad shortchanged many people. Not only are they narcissistic, they have no concept of consideration for others, no idea of the satisfaction of setting a goal and working to achieve it, all the while wanting everything given to them because they want it. I butted heads many times with bosses and coworkers being told that I was superstitious and unenlightened. If believing that setting boundaries and fostering communication and social skills is indicative of the dark agesso be it, and Jim your age is showing. .

  • twoartistic Draper, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 5:22 p.m.

    Don't even get me started on entitlement. The aging, special interests, youth, women, teachers, unions, gays, environmentalists, and now even the ugly (according to the NYT today) feel they are entitled to some often promised but impossible to provide "fairness".

    "I want mine" has gotten way out of control. There is only one group who dares not demand to be treated with some special entitlement, middle aged, middle class, white working males. In the perception of many, we got ours handed to us on a silver platter without the least bit of effort. I clawed out of abject poverty, absent parents, homelessness, addiction and ignorance only to find a bunch of whinny ingates begging for society to "give" them more.

    Grow up, take charge, be the solution, look after your family, neighbor, community, and quit asking what someone else can do for you. God gave 95+% of us the tools to be productive, and the command to personally care for those who cannot. Quit abdicating the responsibility to others, and this can change, otherwise expect more of the same.

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 4:45 p.m.

    Family size is based on the assumption that the more kids you have the less taxes you pay. In other words, large families feel they are entitled to paying less taxes. I have heard so many times parents say they need more tax deductions so let's have another kid. The intent was for the government to be sensitive to large families but now-a-days large families take advantage of the government which ultimately means somebody else (with less or no kids) has to pay for somebody else's kids to go to school. I wonder how many "less kids" some parents would have if they didn't get to deduct all of them on their taxes? Being responsible means being sensitive to the fact that if you have 6 kids then you shouldn't expect someone else to pay your way.

  • dlw7 LOGAN, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 4:04 p.m.

    Conservative Idea; you miss the point. Yes, others before us did build hospital, roads, grow food, but there was not a time my parents didn't pay for those things with money my Dad earned working hard. They didn't expect these things to be handed to them without cost. They didn't believe they were entitled to anything they did't work for and passed that idea on to 6 children who worked their way thru college--no grants loans, etc--and who have filled productive lives giving back to society. We have educators, doctors,
    leaders in their fields in our family who got where we are because we worked hard and stood on our own two feet and expected no handouts from anyone. The point of this article was "entitlements and selfishness"

  • DanO Mission Viejo, CA
    Aug. 29, 2011 3:47 p.m.

    Concerned and Involved says the 20 somethings "feel as if they deserve it all; a big house, a boat, nice cars, four-wheelers, etc., without having worked for it." No the 20 somethings want a job. It wasn't the 20 somethings that crashed the economy by buying houses they couldn't afford.

  • Two Cents Springville, Utah
    Aug. 29, 2011 3:43 p.m.

    I've been reading Little House on the Prarie books to my kids for a couple of years now, and I find it refreshing to see how much those young girls worked and how little they had, yet they were happy. I tease my kids that they'll get a scarf and a peppermint stick for Christmas. The "old" days sure were a simpler time.

    I think every generation tries its best to raise good, happy kids. But no one knows if they succeeded until it's too late.

    Kids need to know how to work and they need practice doing it. I see many kids play all day in the summer. I want to raise independent kids who will move out of the house and be something in life. They have to work and do what they are capable of.

    The same should go for our govt programs. People need to work for what they get, not just take handouts. Clean up a highway or city park. Paint over graffiti, sweep up gravel. Do something! Nothing is really free. Don't pass along the mindset that things are, and you won't raise another entitled generation.

  • Howard Beal Provo, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 2:29 p.m.

    Again, the world that the youth live in now was given to them by the adults before them. They are not to blame. And did this generation invent social security, medicare, welfare. corporate welfare, food stamps, free and reduced lunch for students, and all other "entitlement" programs that exist today. These go back sometimes for several generations. This generation, and probably what we label Generation X and Generation Y, as stated so well above, will probably have to pay lavishly for the entitlements of the Baby Boom Generation while these things won't likely be around for them. I just love how some Baby Boomer can call any generation entitled. This generation brought our economy to the brink of destruction. The original "me generation" dares to call this generation brats--it kind of makes me sick. So sorry Ricardo and my other naysayers, "let's get real."

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 2:22 p.m.

    To "DeltaFoxtrot | 1:38 p.m." and lets look at who gave the Baby Boomers their entitlements, where were shared by all retirees over the past 70+ years.

    Remember FDR, and all of the wonderful social welfare programs? It sounds like the chicken has come home to roost.

    We know the problem, but how do we fix it. Conservatives want to wean the public off the teat of the government. Democrats want create more teats to suckle, and Republicans are somewhere between Democrats and Conservatives.

  • Howard Beal Provo, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 2:19 p.m.

    Sorry people, just because we label a generation as entitled, lazy, selfish or whatever doesn't it make it so.

    I will go along with my own church leaders who said the best of the spirits are yet to come and that God has chosen his most valiant for these times.

    As far as the actual people here on Earth, with this generation I see young people that are industrious, that are service oriented, that are tolerant of others in regards to race in ethnicity that puts previous generations to shame. I've seen young people raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for charitable causes. I see droves of our young people willing to serve in the military and put themselves in harm's way all over the globe. I see this generation inventing things, I mean after all, it wasn't some 40-something that invented Facebook.

    Where many of you see this or that, I see potential. Sorry, I'm not going for this self absorbed, entitlement thing. And where it exists, let's ask who is really to blame. Well, it isn't these kids, it's the parents. And probably the parents of the parents had some issues and the parents before them.

  • dlw7 LOGAN, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 1:50 p.m.

    You are right on! Todays adults of all ages from 90 to 19 would have to make changes in their thinking and lifestyles. But as "Rocket Science" points out, nobody want to see things change in their lives even if there would benefits in the future. As long as "ME" and "MY" are the most important words in our vocabulary this society and this country things will only get worse.

  • DeltaFoxtrot West Valley, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 1:38 p.m.

    Entitlement generation? Who is fooling who here?

    It's the Baby Boomers that are getting all the entitlements... with their low taxes, extensive health coverage and rich retirement benefits, vast pensions so they can support their extravagant lifestyle, all funded by a mortgage on the futures of Generation X and Generation Y... a mortgage they're defaulting on. Thanks to irresponsible fiscal practices, encouraged by that "I want it NOW!" attitude, there's not going to be anything left for us younger folks by the time old age comes for us.

    Generation Y is Oliver Twist, getting the last scrapings from the pot and saying "Please sir, I want some more." ... and some people have the nerve to tell us we're asking for too much.

  • JustAsking Saint George, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 1:31 p.m.

    It would be nice if we lived in a world where work and reward were rewarded in a commensurate fashion. However, no such ideal exists. In some basic ways effort equates to opportunity. Moreover, the Sad reality is, that where equally skilled and hard working individuals co-exist in society, the brutal reality of "Social Darwinism" is the dominant theme.

    Equal distribution of wealth and success to effort is a "Utopian" ideal that would be great. Today such ideas are unrealistic. Until we reach the desired Ideals, greed and survival of the fittest will continue to be the dominant theme. In today's world, the calling cards of democracy and equality are merely seasonal niceties to placate the yearning masses. The sooner children learn to compete and survive the better......

  • Rocket Science Brigham City, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 1:29 p.m.

    Entitled adults exude the belief that "everything is everybody else's fault," Hmmmm, have I heard that before?

    greatest generation: "Don't curtail my benefits I'm on a fixed income" as they drive a new motor home into a National Park for free.

    early baby boomers: "Don't change my benefits, I earned them, I'm retiring soon"

    later baby boomers: "It's not fair you can't change benefits on me now I earned them"

    Bottom line is we all need to take a cut and to sacrifice our entitlements regardless of what we think we are owed. If we don't sacrifice some now things will get much worse later. Our sacrifice can set an example for and we can participate with our younger generations in sacrifice to pay back an unmanageable debt.

  • Kitenoa Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 1:22 p.m.

    To Accommodate is to be Abused.

  • Utes Fan Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 1:07 p.m.

    No doubt kids these days have a terrible sense of entitlement. As a parent of early-teens and pre-teens, I am fighting it constantly. It is everywhere - in the TV shows they watch, in the movies they see, in their friends, and even in adults around them.

    However, there is another "entitlement" that sickens me. Every paycheck I get, over 6% of my income goes to provide a comfortable lifestyle for a large segment of the US population. Most likely, I will see very little, if any at all, of that money myself for my own retirement.

  • runwasatch Ogden, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 1:03 p.m.

    Now the question...

    Is this generation of entitled adults willing to make the necessary change in themselves in order to affect the change in the kids?

  • Happy Valley Heretic Orem, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 12:54 p.m.

    But selfishness is a virtue in a society based on monetary gain as a meter of success in life.
    We even put God on our money.

  • dlw7 LOGAN, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 12:50 p.m.

    When we enter this world we are entitled to only a few things--someone who will love us, protect us, and provide physical necessities to help us grow. After that we are entitled to hard work , determination, and a desire to leave the world a better place. Nobody owes us anything and therein lies the problem. Children have to be taught these principles by one parent/two parents/grandparents, etc and a failure to do this results in selfish, thoughtless, "me" adults who believe they are entitled to whatever they want. This is true no matter the generation and perhaps many of the last few generations of parents have traded "things" for teachings.

  • Blue Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 12:31 p.m.

    Kids today are just no darned good!

    That's what I say, by golly...

    ...and that's what my dad said, and that's what grandpa Joe said, and that's what great-grandpa Chuck said, and that's what great-great-grandpa Orson said...

    They were all 100% correct!

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 12:30 p.m.

    Is it me, or am I the only one who noticed the line "But the problem isn't just in preschool classrooms; it's in homes, high schools, offices and even the highest levels of government."

    Since this is a societal ill, how can it be reversed? If those who should be in charge of the government, and government spending feel they are entitled and feel that people are entitled to whatever they want, how do we break the cycle?

  • patriot Cedar Hills, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 12:04 p.m.

    "The age of entitlement" == "The age of Obama"

  • Navajo Hogan Salt Lake City, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 11:55 a.m.

    I would say the most entitled, selfish group of people are (and were) the baby boomers.

    They inherited the best economy (where only one parent worked, imagine that!)built on the backs of their depression era, world war-winning parents, but somehow were able to create so much of our current debt, wantonly abuse the environment without a second thought, get enormously fat (yes I'm serious)with fat-related health problems creating the huge burden we have on our national budget with medicare and medicaid funding, and embrace consumerism like a religion.

    These boomers are the original,'entitlement' group.

  • EJM Herriman, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 11:22 a.m.

    Can all be traced to liberal policies? With all due respect that has nothing to do with liberal or conservative policies. This all starts at home with the family and it's rules. It has nothing to do with blaming the government, Republican or Democrat, conservative or liberal. People who want to blame the government for everything that is bad I have to ask one question: Can you give the government credit for anything good that it has done? I'm just saying...and I'm just asking.

  • Brave Sir Robin San Diego, CA
    Aug. 29, 2011 11:19 a.m.

    The crux of the issue is in this paragraph:

    "This cycle hits working parents especially hard, says Nelson, who notes they often try to make up for the lack of time with their children by giving them things or quickly solving their problems."

    And there's the problem: Thanks to both parents having busy careers, today's parents have more money than time. We feel guilty about being time-poor with our kids, so we give them what we do have (money/possessions) in an attempt to make ourselves feel better about the poor job we're doing as parents.

    Want well-adjusted kids? Make sure there's a parent home with them.

  • ClarkKent Bountiful, Utah
    Aug. 29, 2011 10:18 a.m.

    Broken families are a huge contributing factor to children feeling entitlement. Why? Divorce guilt. Some parents are entitling their children with whateve they can because of their guilt about their children suffering due to the divorce. This is not helping children at all. It is making it worse.

  • DN Subscriber Cottonwood Heights, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 9:53 a.m.

    Just wait until the ungrateful little kids get handed the bill to repay the Chinese for all the money Obama is spending. That will give them a new perspective on "entitlements!"

    The decay in our culture that has destroyed the family unit, religious values and the work ethic can all be traced to liberal policies. We are paying the price now.

  • Concerned and Involved Spanish Fork, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 8:31 a.m.

    We live in a society in which people in their 20's feel as if they deserve it all; a big house, a boat, nice cars, four-wheelers, etc., without having worked for it. What they have done is gone into massive amounts of debt for it. We have given people the ability to buy these things when the could NOT afford them. The impending result will be that they will be living at 40 like they should have been living at 20. This is a direct result of the entitlement society that we live in. We have individuals who believe that others should pay for them, we have individuals who believe that just because they have had tough breaks in life that others should step up and "fix" it for them, and we have individuals who believe that they "deserve" everything that others have. This is simply not true. On the other hand, we also have individuals who have waited and worked, and are now being rewarded for their efforts. Not everything turns out the way we would like it, but unless and until we start being responsible for our own actions, our society will continue to go downhill.

  • tom_e Kaysville, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 7:14 a.m.

    Let me understand this. Every child going back to school should have a new backpack, new school clothes and free lunch. What do I not understand?

  • FDRfan Sugar City, ID
    Aug. 29, 2011 7:12 a.m.

    "This change in behavior is a symptom of a greater phenomenon that psychologists, family experts, sociologists and scholars say is gripping the world. Now, more than ever, entitlement the idea that "I should get everything I want when I want it, even if I haven't worked for it" is rearing its ugly head."

    Why is this being subtly identified with social security? Does this not more aptly apply to the idle rich than to people who work until they retire? Are not social security and entitlements interchangeable terms in our society? Why?

  • EJM Herriman, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 6:57 a.m.

    I see the sense of entitlement everyday in our public schools. Students who think that everything should be handed to them, including passing grades for next to no effort/work. My sons didn't like me for most of their educational careers in high school. I taught and coached them both. Now that they are older, in college paying for their own way, I think they have a much more health respect for having to really put forth the effort. It wasn't easy at the time but I knew it was the right thing to do. Parents, you can be your kid's friend when they are older but during those first 20-25 years.....first and foremost be the parent. They will always see you as a parent as long as you act like one first.

  • Ricardo Carvalho Provo, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 6:35 a.m.


    Whenever anybody ends a post with "let's get real", I assume they do so due to a lack of persuasive argument. Trying to cajole others into sharing your point of view with a hop on the bandwagon statement is an attempt to narrow the conversation rather than allowing a space for real discussion. You do introduce an interesting idea here in arguing that the current generation is no more entitled than the last. A call for data would be in order. I, too, have wondered whether my own sense of an increase in entitlement is the equivalent of many parents cry that the current crop of music is "not really music at all". Being an educator, however, I do think that entitlement norms run higher over the last several years than they did in the beginning of my career.

  • royale_with_cheese SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Aug. 29, 2011 3:58 a.m.

    A sticker or a piece of gum inside the treasure box? Sorry, Mrs. Greer, I doubt this prize thrilled the kiddies even 40 years ago.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    Aug. 28, 2011 11:41 p.m.

    Sorry, kid. Your job right now should be in the fast food places and mini golf courses of the nation. Corporate slacker just isn't a position we have open right now. Right now I need some guys to push lawnmowers, flip burgers and pick lettuce. Lots of them. And I need people who are detail oriented with a strong work ethic. People who see this work as opportunity, not demeaning to their sense of entitlement. I'll do what I need to do to get the people I need. You wouldn't do the work anyway. Stay home and sulk. Become a statistic. I don't owe you your precious esteem.

  • SammyB Provo, UT
    Aug. 28, 2011 11:34 p.m.

    I am stunned at some of these comments. I thought everyone could see how much things have changed in the last decade or two. Most seasoned teachers have seen a serious change. Jim, for example, thinks older people are petty and jealous instead of concerned. Jim obviously is not a student of history and doesn't know that civilization can progress or digress according to standards of society.

    Even good old Confucius taught that from his studies of history, he learned that whenever a culture lost its politeness, it was on the road to ruin. It doesn't always happen over night, but it does happen every time.

    Ambition is good as long as it doesn't produce arrogance. Entitlement is just wrong.

  • Hawkyo SYRACUSE, UT
    Aug. 28, 2011 9:01 p.m.

    Howard, you could not be more wrong. I see it all the time in the students I work with, and their parents. Entitlement is rampant, and much worse now than ever before. This article was spot on.

  • Hawkyo SYRACUSE, UT
    Aug. 28, 2011 8:59 p.m.

    Jim, this article isn't talking about people who are working for what they get, it's talking about people who want something for nothing, or instant gratification addicts. Sounds like you're as bitter as the older generation you're sticking that label to.(BTW I'm only 31 myself.)

  • Ex-Pat of Zion Lititz, PA
    Aug. 28, 2011 7:33 p.m.

    The more things change, the more they stay the same. Mr. Marshall, productivity and hard work are virtues, but we are seeing as a nation, how those virtues mutate in a zero-sum environment. Ms. Rand would be proud of you. You get an "A" in ambition.

  • Xbalanque DC, VA
    Aug. 28, 2011 7:30 p.m.

    I highly recommend the following read, especially those who think they DESERVE something: "The Narcissism Epidemic: Living in the Age of Entitlement".

  • Cougar Claws Lindon, UT
    Aug. 28, 2011 7:03 p.m.

    I think it is fine to get what you want when you want it, IF you work for it. That is the caveat. You get what you want if you WORK for it. Work, work, work. There really is no substitute for that. I also agree that gratitude is much more absent then it should be. There is nothing wrong with wanting things, and even wanting them quickly. Just work hard and be grateful, that would fix a lot of the problem.

  • WHAT NOW? Saint George, UT
    Aug. 28, 2011 6:23 p.m.

    Corporate entitlement can be corrected?

    Specific objectives, goals and timelines, please.

  • Howard Beal Provo, UT
    Aug. 28, 2011 5:57 p.m.

    Except if you lived through the depression about every generation feels entitled to the generation previous. This stuff is way overrated, overhyped etc. The idea that this new generation will want anything any more or any faster than any previous generation is the older's generations' own self-absorbed attempt to make it feel superior. And I'm a 40 something and we wanted things just as fast as the kids today. Again, let's get real...

  • chris80 murray, ut
    Aug. 28, 2011 4:25 p.m.

    Odd, i thought i remember reading somewhere that generation Z were hard workers, a lot better than Y.

  • Ex-Pat of Zion Lititz, PA
    Aug. 28, 2011 4:08 p.m.

    Excellent feature! I was attracted to it because the topic is certainly germane. I was expecting politicizing...and references were there...but I found balance. The problem of materialism is in the DNA of social structure and exists (in my opinion) as a dominant allele.

  • Jim Marshall Clearfield, UT
    Aug. 28, 2011 4:06 p.m.

    No other generation has been coached up more to believe they can do anything and have anything they desire. Why is the author and many of you 'old people' shocked when this generation actually wants something.

    Its been interesting watching the work environment on hill afb. There is a new generation of extremely skilled, talented, educated, and computer savy 20 somethings - and then the old guard of 55 yr olds still living in the analog world. The youth get ten times the work done, while the old timers whine about an entitled generation wanting what it took them 40 years to get, even if the youth are deserving now.

    Entitlement is a problem when one doesn't put the work in. The bigger problem, however might be with the 40yr+ genrations that have told the youth to work hard and go get it. You are irriated when they might accomplish something that took you many more years to do. I think I speak for my generation when I say that we have no interest in 'waiting our turn'. You taught us well, and now we're are seizing the day so to speak!