David Brooks has an excellent column about the new breed of social service activists who are in it for results, not for big rhetoric and lifestyle theater. He writes, "The highest status symbol in their circle is a Rand study showing that their program yields statistically significant results." These are my kind of servants of the public good.
I see this as the coming to fruition of Gen-X. Howe and Strauss, in 13th Gen, predicted when Gen-Xers were still college students that what they would bring to the commonweal was a devotion to getting a practical job done. Reacting against Baby Boomer rhetoric, they eschewed big causes in their wild youth. Now settling into years of social responsibility, they want their work to really yield results.
I was born in 1960. I am on the cusp between the Boom and Gen-X. I feel the pull of both styles. But my heart is with the Xers.
Pick a problem. Try a solution. Test the results. Git 'er done.