Time for another round of “Why don’t the kids like the politics?”
With hindsight, we now see that the identity of the 19th-century farmer was being transformed into the 20th-century city dweller. Governments responded with a wide range of new initiatives to help people adjust to the new world, such as mass education, new labour laws, health care, career planning, unemployment insurance, and pension schemes.
Such initiatives redefined the role of government by redefining the identity of citizens; and, in the process, reshaped the political discourse of the day. By contrast, it is not even clear that governments today recognize the special identity challenge facing young people.
Well that or young people don’t particularly see anything worth believing in.