A PROGRESSIVE VOICE FROM THE LLANO ESTACADO

Tuesday, June 05, 2012

Is The American Dream Dying ?


This country has always been famous for something called the American Dream --the belief that anyone willing to work hard enough could better himself/herself, and that our children will be better off than we are. I don't know that either of those aspects of the "dream" were ever completely true, but they were commonly believed by a lot of the people in this country.

That seems to be coming to an end. As more and more people see the government catering only to the rich and the corporate interests, and initiating policies that have created such a gap in wealth and income that we are becoming a country of haves and have-nots (as the middle class disappears), many no longer believe that opportunity exists for anyone but the rich.

This is shown by a recent Gallup Poll. That survey showed that only half of Americans believe that opportunity still exists for a person willing to work hard. And even less than that (only about 40%) believe our children will be better off than the current generation. The dream seems to be dying. Here are the numbers, broken down by age and political preference:

OPPORTUNITY FOR NEXT GENERATION TO LIVE BETTER THAN THEIR PARENTS?
General public...............40%
18 to 34...............45%
35 to 54...............40%
55 and over...............34%
Republicans...............37%
Independent...............35%
Democrats...............48%

OPPORTUNITY STILL EXISTS FOR A PERSON WILLING TO WORK HARD?
General public...............50%
18 to 34...............50%
35 to 54...............51%
55 and over...............49%
Republicans...............56%
Independents...............47%
Democrats...............50%

Maybe people are finally beginning to wake up and realize that the Republican policies of the last 30 years have stacked the deck in favor of the rich and against the rest of America.

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