Jon Miller

Rep. Paul Ryan is the first member of Generation X—those born between 1961 and 1981—to appear on a major party ticket, inspiring analysts to parse his stances for evidence of generational influences. For example, the 42-year-old Ryan is known to have a fondness for locally brewed beer and grunge music, according to an August 14 CNN article. But his conservative approach to fiscal policy, including his proposal for a partially privatized Medicare program, also speaks to the Gen X worry that social insurance programs will run out before members of their generation can benefit from them. Even Ryan’s lack of concern for the environment fits. CNN cited a recent ISR study showing that only 5 percent of Gen Xers said they are “alarmed” by climate change and only 18 percent “concerned.” “Most Generation Xers are surprisingly disengaged, dismissive or doubtful about whether global climate change is happening and they don’t spend much time worrying about it,” according to “The Generation X Report” author Jon Miller.