Comments about ‘What the American Dream is, and what it isn't’

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Published: Wednesday, Aug. 6 2014 9:50 a.m. MDT

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Open Minded Mormon
Everett, 00

The problem is this --

America has transformed into everything the Old World Aristocrats had...

A tiny, very wealthy, 1%, powerful, and privileged few --
a much larger, 99%, poorer, and harder working poor.

The American Dream was the new MIDDLE Class,
that is rapidly disintegrating back into the back pages of 20th century history.

John Charity Spring
Back Home in Davis County, UT

"I have no misgivings about, or lack of confidence in, the cause in which I am engaged, and my courage does not halt or falter. I know . . . how great a debt we owe to those who went before us through the blood and sufferings of the Revolution. And I am willing--perfectly willing to lat down all my joys in this life . . . to pay the debt."
--Sullivan Ballot

If more Americans honored this value, the dream would be a reality.

Bluffdale, UT

the other coment is so right on. the worst thing is housing is starting to be out of reach for a larger amount of the poulation, and aparments are just as much money.


I appreciate this article as I have often wondered what "the American dream" was and, yes, it did seem to mean having a lot of money. The originator of the phrase seemed to have in mind something more inclusive and noble: opportunity and personal development or, in other words, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. I can concur with that.

Cedar Hills, UT

The American Dream is dead. Obama and his secular progressives have already had the funeral to their delight. Today Americans have to re-chart their course with lower expectations and opportunites. Look around you and what you see is the independent and self reliant America being replaced with the welfare state and when the welfare state is complete there will be NO home ownership or even private property except for the wealthy and the poltical elite. Take present day California as your model.

what to teach your kids? I think the only thing you can do is to circle the wagons and perhaps have a family plan which will provide opportunites for your kids because the ability of the American nation to do it is history....sadly.

"Ask NOT what you can do for your country but instead ask what your country can give you for free" Barack Obama in a nutshell...

Open Minded Mormon
Everett, 00

American Businessmen off-shored and out-sourced "The American Dream" to communists in Red China...

Riverton Cougar
Riverton, UT

Open Minded Mormon,

I agree with you. After all, 8 out of the 10 wealthiest counties in the USA are Democrat, so I see what you mean. Obama needs to stop destroying the middle class so that the American Dream can become a reality again.

Salt Lake City, UT

"The American Dream is dead. Obama and his secular progressives have already had the funeral to their delight."

Total baloney. The DJIA is in record high territory, as are corporate profits, corporate cash reserves, and corporate executive compensation packages. BTW, federal revenues derived from corporate taxes are at all-time _lows_.

If you're feeling squeezed out of the "American Dream", it's because the jobs that are available are increasingly low-wage jobs, a higher education is rapidly becoming something only the wealthy can provide for their children, and even then a 26 year-old college graduate's chances at actually buying a home are remote when he feels fortunate to land a job that pays $40,000 per year, but still can't qualify for a mortgage, even for a condo.

And your retirement? Good luck with that - your employer is constantly looking for ways to shed its pension obligations and finding legislators who are only too happy to help them do just that - for a price.

Blaming President Obama for this situation is beyond laughable.

seattle, WA

Obama and progressives did not "kill" the American dream. Corporate America did (just who exported good paying jobs overseas?). Along with a bunch of the earlier generation who wasted the ecological and financial patrimony on a bunch of goodies to give immediate benefit to that same generation.

We lowered taxes under Reagan and succeeding Presidents, but did not cut spending, thereby incurring debt. We waste our land with inefficient and outdated coal and petroleum extraction for the benefit of cheap energy businesses. All because we don't want to pay for things as we go.

So, a whole bunch of folks got a lot of benefits that they never paid for, and the next generations will have to pay for them. That goes for some wars too. We have despoiled the environment, which will take trillions for the next generations to restore.

Conservatives bemoan financial misbehavior, except their own. They are the ones who ruined the American dream, and refuse to accept their complicity.

george of the jungle
goshen, UT

Albert Einstein said once, you live your life for life to have a life to live for. I guess the I'm wondering is, what is worth dieing for, when it's every man for themselves.

2 bits
Cottonwood Heights, UT

The American Dream is different things for different people. That's a good thing. In some ways we're all the same, but in other's we're not. For instance, A CEO of a fortune 500 company sees the "American Dream" differently than a homeless drug addict. One just wants a home, something to eat, and security while they sleep. The other just wants a bigger home and more security guards to guard their stuff.

Someone working in the fields in Mexico probably sees the "American Dream" differently than a person raised and educated in an American city.

But we all want liberty, security, and the other unalienable rights guaranteed in the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. I think THAT... is what we should focus on (not money or property).

South Jordan, UT

If you think that the American Dream is dead, all that you have to do is look at the thousands who still want to come here for a better opportunity to know it is still alive and well in the hearts of millions of people around the world. Perhaps you are just looking in the wrong place.

Liberal Ted
Salt Lake City, UT

The left has turned the American Dream where you labor according to your ability, to the American Entitlement. Where everyone should be at the same level, regardless on how much effort you put into it.

Cedar Hills, UT


1. Corporate taxes are at an all time low. Where did you dervice this nonsense from? Take off your MSNBC glasses for just a moment and ask yourself WHY companies are MOVING to Texas from California and NY and other progressive states. It is BECAUSE the corporate taxes are SO HIGH...and climbing!!! The 35% rate is THE highest amoung ALL democratic countries. Ireland for example is around 12%. Oh and your socialist king Obama wants to climb the rate even higher. STRIKE ONE!
2. Kids are graduating to NO JOBS because there are NO JOBS - NO RECRUITERS on campus as in past decades. So where are all the job opportunities? Think for a moment about the VAST energy development and job opportunities (high paying high skill) just waiting in the wings....but again your socialist king has instructed the EPA to lock up all public lands for energy development. We can't even get the Keystone pipeline approved for pete sake!!! Even Hillary supports the Keystone!!! STRIKE TWO
3. You said "the jobs that are available are increasingly low-wage jobs". Yes and add part-time to that as well and all compliments of OBAMACARE!!! STRIKE TRHEE

Sandy, UT

@patriot. I thought republicans take pride in personal responsibility yet you blame others. The welfare state is a farce that republicans continually push. In a recession the safety net will increase because that is how it is designed to work. It helps people get through the bad times.

As far as welfare queens and the like that is a total myth.

Mchenry, IL

The American Dream isn't about money and stuff. The American dream is for the individual to work at an occupation of his or her chosing without depending on birth order or parental occupation.

Virginia Beach, VA

Hey Patriot -

Yes, we're still feeling the horrible effects of all that Right Wing Republican mismanagement . . . But we have made big strides.

Thankfully, the country a nation tottering on the brink of economic devastation . . . Like GW left it.

And the stock market is BOOMING, which reflects massive confidence in our President.

Things could definitely be better though, and if it were not for incessant "Conservative" obstructionism, things would be MUCH better.

Thank God for the wisdom of President Obama and the Democrats.

Cedar Hills, UT


"The welfare state is a farce that republicans continually push"

Fact 1: Food Stamps are at an ALL TIME HIGH for an American President under Barack Obama
Fact 2: Disability benefit fraud is at an ALL TIME HIGH under Barack Obama
Fact 3: The welfare payout per capita is at an ALL TIME HIGH under Barack Obama

(yes Shaun - The welfare state)

Also your suggestion that somehow "handouts" are the solution to getting throught the bad times is actually quite typical Socialist thinking. Let me offer another way - JOBS!!! Yes you know the jobs that would have and could have come from things such as The Key Stone Pipe Line and a mountain of other energy jobs just waiting ...waiting ....waiting... for a practical president to take his foot off the throat of American industry.

By the if you have kids (or perhaps one day you will) would you rather they live in your basement til age 35 reaping all the free goodies from Ma and Pa like free room and board, free cell phone, free car and not even having to work for any of it? Why is that good for the nation then?

Houston, TX

K's definition of The American Dream is right on. The biggest obstacle to it is high unemployment or under-employment.

Recent graduates can't get a job because universities don't provide the skills and experience that good jobs frequently demand. The world has gotten too complex to fill job openings with someone with no applicable work experience.

It is time to shed the liberal arts courses and replace them with in-depth, practical instruction. A worthy alternative is for companies to hire graduates at very low salaries and then provide in-house, on-the-job training to bring them up to speed.

However, this ideal is frequently impractical because companies can't wait a year to get the job done. Their only alternative is to steal qualified personnel from other companies, which then opens a job that can only be filled by an experienced worker.

We incur a grave risk by neglecting to provide opportunities for our young men and women just entering the work force.

Stalwart Sentinel
San Jose, CA


You should take a peek at which states have the highest percentage of their population on welfare. Almost without exception, they are the red states of the South. Conservative states are more on the dole of government than any facet of American society. What's more, conservative states, almost without exception, receive more in federal monies than they pay in federal taxes while the opposite is true for liberal states. Nearly every conservative state, including Utah, are net debtors when it comes to federal tax dollars. Your entire state government is on welfare and has been for more than 30 years. CA and NY are not moving HQs to Texas, we're moving call centers, etc.... Texas doesn't have a sufficiently educated workforce to handle one major tech company, let alone an industry like that of Silicon Valley.

Also, the US effective corporate tax rates are some of the lowest in the industrialized world so the 35% number is completely misleading. What fear do you have of telling the truth? Furthermore, it's ironic you mentioned Ireland - which has been the net beneficiary of US corporate inversion. Guess which side of the aisle promotes that? Conservatives.

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