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  #1  
Old Posted Feb 7, 2007, 6:04 PM
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Cool Lets be real.... We need to update the definition of THE AMERICAN DREAM

We all have seen the images of the white pickett fences and a red car in the drive way, nicely trimmed grass and a pretty hedge (for some reason that "Lets take on Orbitz" commercial comes to mind)

But lets be for real. The post-war baby boomer definition of "The American Dream" is out of date IMOP. It is becoming less and less affordable and desirable. Isolation, commute times, wasted materials, destruction of valuable farmlands and open space is all a by product to this so called DREAM.

In your opinion, what is the new Generation X American Dream?
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  #2  
Old Posted Feb 7, 2007, 6:22 PM
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2 careers
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2 little time to enjoy any of it.
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  #3  
Old Posted Feb 7, 2007, 6:38 PM
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the cars and the house are all products of the american dream...financial success. don't have to be a millionaire but have your slice of the pie.
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  #4  
Old Posted Feb 7, 2007, 6:38 PM
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What do you mean? The American Dream in the 1950's meant a family, a 1200 square foot house with a lawn in a middle class suburb, television, one car parked in front and a plastic above-ground pool in the back. Hardly luxurious or out of reach by today's standards...

Maybe young couples would be able to afford the dream of owning if they didn't insist on buying a 3000 square foot house with an in-ground pool as their first home. Buy a condo/townhouse/apartment instead. Or just rent until you're 35-40, as is common in much of Europe. The middle class nowadays spends so much money on Louis Vitton bags, expensive stereo equiptment, and GPS systems for their 2-3 cars that many find it hard to afford to buy property.

We're better off than ever before, and many people don't realize it because they are spending so much money on luxury goods that it becomes difficult to pay the bills.
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  #5  
Old Posted Feb 7, 2007, 6:41 PM
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A new President, a new administration, less divisive politics, a humble and peaceful United States. A country that the world can respect again. Generation X, Y and beyond must realize that we will be inheriting the reigns of power in a very different geopolitical landscape. Sure, we can continue to be one of the leaders of the world, but we must be conciliatory in our relations with the world and become more responsible for our actions, which means polluting less and creating new policies that demonstrate our willingness to recognize those changes. Our model must be one of survival and sharing, not exploitation and the feeling of entitlement to the planet's precious resources.
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  #6  
Old Posted Feb 7, 2007, 6:43 PM
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Originally Posted by crisp444 View Post
What do you mean? The American Dream in the 1950's meant a family, a 1200 square foot house with a lawn in a middle class suburb, television, one car parked in front and a plastic above-ground pool in the back. Hardly luxurious or out of reach by today's standards...

Maybe young couples would be able to afford the dream of owning if they didn't insist on buying a 3000 square foot house with an in-ground pool as their first home. Buy a condo/townhouse/apartment instead. Or just rent until you're 35-40, as is common in much of Europe. The middle class nowadays spends so much money on Louis Vitton bags, expensive stereo equiptment, and GPS systems for their 2-3 cars that many find it hard to afford to buy property.

We're better off than ever before, and many people don't realize it because they are spending so much money on luxury goods that it becomes difficult to pay the bills.

Exactly, people talk about how now it takes 2 incomes to support a family instead of one, but it's more a function of all the luxuries that people take as a given that need to be purchased....would you rather be alive now, or then? The quality of life one can afford now is staggering.
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  #7  
Old Posted Feb 7, 2007, 8:20 PM
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Originally Posted by VivaLFuego View Post
Exactly, people talk about how now it takes 2 incomes to support a family instead of one, but it's more a function of all the luxuries that people take as a given that need to be purchased....would you rather be alive now, or then? The quality of life one can afford now is staggering.
I don't know, my dream is 1200+ sqft in the sky, and it will quite likely take two incomes to get it. And anyone that knows me, knows I'm not slave to fashion.

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  #8  
Old Posted Feb 7, 2007, 8:29 PM
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The American Dream was never actually something that was generated in the 50's, nuclear family, daddy-at-work, mommy-at-home myth (although, somehow that image is what became most synonymous with "the American Dream"), but actually pre-dates that, at least what the most symbolic or traditional meaning(s) could be:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Dream

Regardless, in my opinion, living up to a status quo, proxy norm is ridiculous; everyone should have their personal American Dream and live it as best you can; don't let others (in these silly forums or even greater outside opinions) dictate what your dream should be; THAT is what the new definition of the American Dream should be.
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  #9  
Old Posted Feb 7, 2007, 9:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crisp444 View Post
What do you mean? The American Dream in the 1950's meant a family, a 1200 square foot house with a lawn in a middle class suburb, television, one car parked in front and a plastic above-ground pool in the back. Hardly luxurious or out of reach by today's standards...

Maybe young couples would be able to afford the dream of owning if they didn't insist on buying a 3000 square foot house with an in-ground pool as their first home. Buy a condo/townhouse/apartment instead. Or just rent until you're 35-40, as is common in much of Europe. The middle class nowadays spends so much money on Louis Vitton bags, expensive stereo equiptment, and GPS systems for their 2-3 cars that many find it hard to afford to buy property.

We're better off than ever before, and many people don't realize it because they are spending so much money on luxury goods that it becomes difficult to pay the bills.
The average American family probably had more disposable income back then than they do today, and probably both parents didn't have to work to achieve it. Also, however, they wasted a lot less money than people do today, on useless things and restaurant food. All about priorities.
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  #10  
Old Posted Feb 7, 2007, 9:03 PM
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I think the new definition of the American dream would to be able to make it through the rest of this decade without being blown up by a nuclear missle.
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  #11  
Old Posted Feb 7, 2007, 9:05 PM
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Not only is "the American dream" alive and well, they're building more of it than ever.

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  #12  
Old Posted Feb 7, 2007, 9:11 PM
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I thought the American Dream was referring to an immigrant who comes here with $10 in their pocket and end up making it rich and big in America.
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  #13  
Old Posted Feb 7, 2007, 9:29 PM
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There are two American Dreams.

The Foreigner's American Dream and the Soldier's American Dream. The oldest one is the former and the one that was created from the Great Depression and WWII is the latter. Me thinks.
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  #14  
Old Posted Feb 7, 2007, 9:58 PM
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I think the new definition of the American dream would to be able to make it through the rest of this decade without being blown up by a nuclear missle.
That's not new, that's the Cold War definition of the American Dream.

Anyways, the American Dream is dead. Long live the American Dream.
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  #15  
Old Posted Feb 7, 2007, 11:06 PM
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Originally Posted by crisp444 View Post
We're better off than ever before, and many people don't realize it because they are spending so much money on luxury goods that it becomes difficult to pay the bills.
bingo. and thats the problem. part of it is the media/ celebrity culture we live in. in the past, people compared themselves to their social groups (i.e. church, clubs, etc). the people you associated with were pretty similar to you. you didnt aspire to having all sorts of luxuries because, well you couldnt afford them and it wasnt even an issue. there were more important things, like putting a meal on the table and paying the bills. now, you turn on TV and i think people truly believe they can live the same lifestyle as celebrities. the $20 drinks at the bar, the huge flat screen tv, the in ground pools, the designer labels...and now it is possible to fake this lifestyle by going into debt. which is exactly what much of todays youth is doing.
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  #16  
Old Posted Feb 7, 2007, 11:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kpexpress View Post
We all have seen the images of the white pickett fences and a red car in the drive way, nicely trimmed grass and a pretty hedge (for some reason that "Lets take on Orbitz" commercial comes to mind)

But lets be for real. The post-war baby boomer definition of "The American Dream" is out of date IMOP. It is becoming less and less affordable and desirable. Isolation, commute times, wasted materials, destruction of valuable farmlands and open space is all a by product to this so called DREAM.

In your opinion, what is the new Generation X American Dream?

I think The American Dream should be however each individual chooses how to live there lives and where to live and not waste there time on how others choose to live there lives.
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  #17  
Old Posted Feb 8, 2007, 12:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Attrill View Post
That's not new, that's the Cold War definition of the American Dream.

Anyways, the American Dream is dead. Long live the American Dream.

Then you don't have a chance, Attrill. Having the right attitude to get what
you want makes your dream possible. My dream four years ago was to own
a 900sf home... today my dream is to upgrade to maybe 1400sq. Everything’s
doable if your willing to give a little here and not spend frivolously over there.
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  #18  
Old Posted Feb 8, 2007, 4:12 AM
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Originally Posted by innov8 View Post
Then you don't have a chance, Attrill. Having the right attitude to get what
you want makes your dream possible. My dream four years ago was to own
a 900sf home... today my dream is to upgrade to maybe 1400sq. Everything’s
doable if your willing to give a little here and not spend frivolously over there.
I don't see it having anything to do with me - I'm happily married with a healthy, happy, hilarious baby daughter and own exactly the type of house I want (hell, there isn't even that much I want for my shop now that I have an arc welder). My life is great, but that isn't how I judge the health of the US or the American Dream. It isn't my dream, it's the American Dream.

I see the death of the American Dream as something that has to do with a change in the attitude of Americans and the domination of the political system by corporations and established interests.

There are a lot of different definitons of the American Dream, but the first (and best to me) is this:

"that dream of a land in which life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone, with opportunity for each according to ability or achievement. It is a difficult dream for the European upper classes to interpret adequately, and too many of us ourselves have grown weary and mistrustful of it. It is not a dream of motor cars and high wages merely, but a dream of social order in which each man and each woman shall be able to attain to the fullest stature of which they are innately capable, and be recognized by others for what they are, regardless of the fortuitous circumstances of birth or position."

It will take years to undo the damage the Republicans have done to these ideals over the last 6 years, and maybe then we can start talking about the American Dream again.

Last edited by Attrill; Feb 8, 2007 at 6:18 AM.
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  #19  
Old Posted Feb 9, 2007, 3:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Attrill View Post
It will take years to undo the damage the Republicans have done to these ideals over the last 6 years, and maybe then we can start talking about the American Dream again.
Then it's official... Attrill say's the American Dream has been
put hold because a certain party is in office The economy’s
healthy, unemployment is low and if you, I, or anybody
who wants to succeed and get their dream, it can be done.
Don't let a party in the White House or Congress determine
weather you get what you want... that sounds like more of an
excuse for someone who really doe's have the will power
to get it done to begin with.
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  #20  
Old Posted Feb 9, 2007, 6:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by innov8 View Post
Don't let a party in the White House or Congress determine
weather you get what you want... that sounds like more of an
excuse for someone who really doe's have the will power
to get it done to begin with.
Have you ever read ANY US history?

Did you you read what I wrote?

Do you you think the American Dream is "I want a big house and I got it!". That is both sad and ignorant.

Thinking the American Dream is getting "what you want" is exactly what is wrong with the US today - The idea originated as a much larger idea in the late 1800's/early 1900's, was articulated by James Adams in the 30's, and has been written about from all sorts of perspectives by a slew of writers like F. Scott Fitzgerald, Edward Albee, Horatio Alger, John Steinbeck, and Hunter S. Thompson.

And don't take my word for it, it was first declared dead when Adams coined the term.
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