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June 29, 2017

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Local millennials seethe over accusations of laziness

TAIPEI, Taiwan --They have been labeled lazy, unproductive, overly protected and spoiled, not to mention uncompetitive in the job market, not having enough children and not buying homes.

Some Taiwanese millennials have had enough.

In a viral post on the local discussion forum PTT this week, user "bacelorwhc" writes that the younger generation is being blamed for their predicament even though their elders had enacted policies that enabled many of the problems today, such as stagnant wages, low birth rates and low levels of home ownership.

He said policies like the overexpansion of higher education, education reform, housing prices, food scandals and 18 percent preferential savings rates for civil servants produced "bullsh*t social problems" that people born after the 1990s inherited rather than instigated.

"I really don't get it -- what have we millennials done wrong?"

The post drew mostly positive responses.

"Born at the wrong time," one user wrote.

Another said that "to be born earlier means reaping rewards earlier."

Resentment was stoked among Taiwan's youth last week when the president of a grocery store chain labeled them "spendthrifts" who needed to work harder and complain less. Remarks made by PX Mart President Hsu Chong-jen drew so much rebuke online that Hsu later issued an apology on social media, in which he labeled the issue as one of a generational conflict.

Government statistics released this week showed that one would have to spend no money for 9.35 years to have enough to buy a house outright in Taiwan. The duration increases to 15.47 years for housing in Taipei.

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