My generation is more likely to rack up $6000 in credit card debt rather than live frugally during a recession. Acess to credit is easy and ubiquitous. So why go with out when you can just put it on the credit card.
The skills of living within your means and thrift have long gone. We grew up in times of plenty. We got all the gadgets that we wanted and now expect to have the latest HD widescreen LCD home theatre HD DVD when we want it and all on store credit (but interest free for the first twelve months!).
I imagine most of them live paycheck to paycheck and don't know where all there money goes. Low levels of savings and investment are probably the norm.
If we are really going to be hit with a recession, some of us will get into big trouble. Young people, quick, find an old person who has lived through a recession!!! Old people, educate the youngins!
Not that I think we are heading towards a major recession anyway. There are still plenty of jobs, sure things cost more and we will be seeing a lot more mortgage stress but it could be a hell of a lot worse.