It seems to me that there are things at work here preventing our young people from grasping the fact that this one issue of economics (tremendous public debt) could make the other issues somewhat meaningless in their lives.
The first reason is that they are not receiving any proper education on finances and money and how economics works. They have very little understanding of how countries or states or cities finance themselves.
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Secondly, they are being taught that the system is broken and that if we adopt a different economic system, all these problems will go away. They are being taught that this system was designed by the rich to benefit the rich and that when this system is abandoned, all the problems will go away.
If people and business were just forced to pay their fair share, all these problems will go away.
In reality, no matter what economic system we adopt in the future and no matter what we do, this problem will still be there. Why is gay marriage the most important issue for young people? I think it's because they don't understand even a little of the economic bad news they will be facing in the future.
It's not just outright dumbness, but a learned belief that has been pounded into their heads from first grade to college graduation that the economic system is unjust and stacked against them. The new system will have total justice and the bills will be paid by the well-to-do and big business and everyone will have a fair shake.
The fact is they are not being taught proper economics because everyone is going to have to pay these bills- not only in a lot of cash, but also in a much lower standard of living. There is no way out.