I've just read a piece about the new editor of The Times, James Harding. He's 38. Will Lewis, the editor of the Daily Telegraph is also 38. George Osborne is 36. David Cameron is 40.
At the age of 45, perhaps I should be considering retirement! It's quite a thought to think that in the political and media world 45 is an age at which you sometimes think to yourself that you are a bit past it. The thing is, I don't feel any different to how I did when I was 30 - it's just that I have learned a hell of a lot in the intervening 15 years. Hopefully, that experience informs my decisions and means I make fewer bad ones. Hopefully.
But if I sometimes think that 45 is beyond a sell by date, I can hardly imagine what I will be thinking in 5 or 10 years time. Society is definitely becoming ever more youth oriented, and in some ways you can see why. Newsreaders are rarely over 40. Our celebrity obsessed media derides anyone who hasn't got the 'body beautiful' or has a few grey hairs and wrinkles. The BBC puts out to grass anyone who doesn't fit in which its 'right on' image. It's madness.
What we are doing is ignoring a huge group of talented people who have a lot still to give. I have written before about the fact that all political parties should be positively embracing candidates who are in their fifties, yet none of them considers it an issue they should even be thinking about. Newspapers also want ever younger writers and journalists - people who demonstate hunger and ruthlessness, rather than experience and judgement.
I find it profoundly depressing that society now judges people over the age of 50 as a group who by and large have little to contribute any longer. And it's not just because I'm only five years off that age myself! Fifty seems to be the new sixty five!