January 26, 2016

By Gonzalo López Martí         LMMIAMI.COM

  • Millennials live in a sort of protracted adolescence.
  • Not necessarily their fault.
  • See, “modern capitalism”- for lack of a better definition- needs consumers to behave as teenagers starting at the tender age of 9 and well into our 60s.
  • Existentially obsessed with success, popularity and youth.
  • Continually under the urge of instant gratification.
  • Even if your helicopter parents cater to your every whim and tell you once and again since your earliest childhood that you are special and can be whatever you want to be in life, by the time you reach adulthood reality hits you.
  • It hits you hard.
  • It hits you in the head.
  • Literally & figuratively.
  • Enter Big Pharma.
  • To turn Millennials into baby boomers on steroids.
  • Literally.
  • Pill popping pansies.
  • Profoundly unable to cope with failure.
  • The Anglo Protestant ethos is partly to blame (as much as I admire it, sometimes one’s got to say it like it is).
  • According to the Anglo Protestant worldview, we humans are supposed to do one thing and do it right.
  • Find out what we are good at and stick to it for life.
  • It’s either the hall of fame or the hell of shame.
  • Add to the equation the fact that Millennials are expected to multitask as if the day had 34 hours and the weekend 72.
  • Can’t think of a better way to live a life of doubt, misery and regret.
  • We Latin Catholics are to some extent shielded from this fate.
  • We tend to not be so hard on ourselves.
  • Mind you, I ain’t saying our Latin Catholic ethos is better: our alleged laid back, humanistic outlook on life can easily veer into outright laziness, procrastination and underachievement.
  • For the cherished purpose of living life to its fullest (aka FOMO or Fear Of Missing Out) Millennials of all ethnicites like to think they can resort to putting themselves in the hands of that lofty abstraction called "science".
  • Lemme tell y’all: "science" and the pharmaceutical industry are two different creatures, if you know what am sayin’.
  • It shouldn’t come as a surprise then that Millennials hold an alarmingly cozy relationship with drugs (both in their legal & illegal forms).
  • This is the generation that grew up witnessing the meltdowns of Lance Armstrong, Marion Jones and A-Rod.
  • The lesson, oddly is enough, is not “don’t do drugs”.
  • The lesson is “don’t get caught”.
  • I’ve been told by reliable sources that pharmaceutical companies are rubbing their hands at the prospect of the Millennial generation reaching their 40s.
  • The “medical marijuana dispenser” coming to a street corner near you is just the beginning.
  • At this pace, in a few years antidepressants and painkillers will be sold off vending machines.
  • This is not hyperbole, it’s a serious epidemic: today nearly a quarter of all Americans are on psychiatric drugs, and somewhere between 26.4 and 36 million Americans abuse opioids every day.
  • I repeat: nearly a quarter of all Americans are on psychiatric drugs, and somewhere between 26.4 and 36 million Americans abuse opioids every day. *
  • Oxycontin is an opioid.
  • Heroine too.
  • Surprisingly enough, d’you know what demographic is being hit hardest by this epidemic?
  • Non Hispanic Whites.
  • Ah, the beauty of the pharmaceutical industry (of the legal &/or illegal kind).
  • Mind & body become immune.
  • Mind & body demand recurring, escalating doses and treatments.
  • Ultimately, the solution to fix the damage caused by the use & abuse of one substance more often than not comes from the intake of another one.
  • The proverbial vicious circle.
  • A botched Brazilian butt job requires another butt job.
  • And so on.
  • Moreover, God forbid one confronts a life-threatening disease.
  • What pharma wants, pharma gets.
  • A marketer’s dream come true.
  • But let’s get back to pharmaceutical products that do not save lives.
  • You know, the kind of products that prey on our lack of mettle, emotional weaknesses, insecurities and shortcomings.
  • Lonely?
  • Not only there’s an app for that, there’s a pill for that too.
  • Moody?
  • There’s a pill for that too.
  • Tired?
  • There’s a lozenge for that.
  • Saggy abs?
  • There’s juice for that (you can buy it from the black market steroid dealers that populate the locker rooms of most gyms in America)
  • Love handles?
  • There’s cool sculpting for that.
  • Small breasts or pencil calves?
  • There’s an implant for that.
  • A friend of mine who used to nurse a sweet tooth for recreational drugs had a very good way to explain addiction: “anything that provides your body or mind with a palpable, immediate relationship of cause & effect is potentially addictive”.
  • The rollercoaster of dopamine, endorphins and serotonin gone wild.
  • We humans, Millennials in particular, want to believe that “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger”.
  • Really?
  • C’mon: it’s just a thinly veiled rationalization to condone self-destructive habits and behaviors we are not willing or able to give up.
  • Oh, I’m not addicted, I can handle it.
  • Yeah, right.
  • Hey, I don’t feel contempt for Millennials.
  • Quite the contrary, I kind of admire their no nonsense, hedonistic, detached pragmatism.
  • Then again, detached pragmatism can lead to a lonely, miserable, insecure, erratic, purposeless existence.
  • A life of FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out)
  • FOC (Fear Of Commitment)
  • FOR (Fear Of Rejection)
  • FOGH (Fear Of Getting Hurt)
  • FONS (Fear of Not Succeding)
  • FOBAL (Fear Of Being A Loser)
  • FOSAF (Fear Of Starting A Family)
  • See, an awful lot of Millennials don’t really believe in emotions, feelings or states of mind.
  • For them these are just manifestations, symptoms, of the shifting chemistry in our bodies.
  • They don’t fall in love, “they are attracted to one another”.
  • Or just plain horny.
  • For many Millennials who grew up getting their sex ed from online porn, intercourse is just mutual masturbation.
  • Like getting off with the help of a living, breathing sexual aid.
  • Boy they are fucked up (no pun intended… well yes)
  • This is the generation that takes recreational Viagra at the tender age of 22.
  • Hey, 6 hour-long sexual marathons are way more fun.
  • Especially when Tinder can provide you with various readily available partners in the course of one single night.
  • They are an odd bunch these folks.
  • They’ll grossly overpay for their organic groceries at Whole Foods because, y’know, they are all about the health.
  • Only to mix heavy doses of alcohol & recreational drugs with reckless abandon.
  • A few hours after their yoga class.
  • Cuz nothing unwinds mind & body after a long work week better than bottle service and a few trips to powder your nose in the privacy of a bathroom stall.
  • Too bad that getting your beauty sleep after hitting the town in this manner requires yet another round of scavenging that darned medicine cabinet.
  • Trust me, don’t let their new-agey, politically correct banter fool you: when Millennials talk about being “healthy” they are really referring to being sexually attractive.
  • They are masters at projecting just the right image for just the right occasion.
  • To others and in front of the mirror.
  • Retweeting the Red Cross or following Greenpeace on Instagram doesn’t really count as volunteering, y’all.
  • Let alone growing a mustache one month a year, emptying a bucket of chilly water over your head and other assorted feats of feel-good fakery.
  • Whoever coined the portmanteau “slacktivism” nailed it right on the head.
  • You can wax poetical about the environment all you want, but if you stand in line to buy a new iPhone every six months you are not just part of the sustainability problem: you are the problem.
  • In a nutshell: the pharmaceutical sector is gearing up for a streak of exponential growth in the coming years, courtesy of our beloved generation Y.
  • If you work in Big Pharma brace yourself for a bunch of big bonuses.
  • Likewise if you operate in the alcohol biz.
  • Thanks to Uber, the liquor industry will experience the most formidable windfall since Prohibition was overturned in 1933.
  • *You might think this is my opinion.
  • Well, no.
  • Check this out:
  • Rising morbidity and mortality in midlife among white non-Hispanic Americans in the 21st century
  • Download white paper here

 

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