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As Baby Boomers Know, and Bentsen Proved, Authenticity Counts

Ever since George Bush reached down and picked this boomer up by the scruff of his neck, I have been struck by the intensity of ridicule leveled at Dan Quayle by those that the demographers call his cohorts. Traveling around the country, I have been talking to the very people he was supposed to attract. Those born in his “century” have been even harsher in their assessment of his qualifications than older Americans.

The generation assembled under one label just doesn’t see itself as one voting bloc. More to the point, they don’t see Dan Quayle as one of them.

The senator from Indiana is a pretty good case study for anybody making a pitch for the baby-boom vote. If there is one thing this generation of individualists is collectively wise about, it’s packaging.

Up there on the stage, side by side, matched gray hair to brown, wrinkles against freckles, Lloyd Bentsen came across as a man who knows himself. Dan Quayle as a man who knows how to do what he’s told. What the baby-boom generation cares about isn’t age. It’s authenticity.

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