If you believe the British press, the youth of today is aimless, feckless and hopeless, addicted to their PlayStations, lacking in respect and lacking in the emotional discipline needed to cope with a big match occasion.
If you believe the politicians, we have a broken society, in which the courage and morals of young people have been sapped by welfarism and political correctness.
And if you look at what is happening at the Beijing Olympics, you can see what piffle that is. Do not adjust your set: that really is a collection of smiling, well-balanced young British people, giving pleasingly self-deprecating accounts of how they have managed to haul in medal after medal after medal.
Which politically correct left-wing lunatic dares to be so optimistic in the face of such overwhelming evidence of how awful and atomised we are? Err, Boris Johnson. Doubtless he will be swiftly treated to a re-education session courtesy of CCHQ and Andy Coulson.