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  • Writer's pictureDonald Iannone

Contrasting Views of the American Dream in 2024

The American Dream, an emblem of hope and prosperity, has long captivated the imagination of those within and beyond the United States' borders. As we navigate the complexities of 2024, the concept of the American Dream is more debated and dissected than ever, revealing a tapestry of perspectives that reflect the nation's ideological diversity. This essay delves into these multifaceted views, showcasing how conservatives, liberals, and those in the political middle each conceive of the American Dream in today's context.


Conservative Perspectives

Conservatives traditionally view the American Dream as a testament to individualism and free enterprise. They champion policies that reduce government intervention, advocating for lower taxes and fewer regulations to foster an environment where businesses can thrive and individuals can achieve success through their own efforts. Conservatives argue that personal responsibility and hard work are the cornerstones of success, and the government's role should be limited to ensuring equality of opportunity rather than equality of outcomes. They often emphasize the importance of traditional values, such as family and community support systems, as essential components of achieving the American Dream.


Liberal Perspectives

Liberals, on the other hand, stress the significance of addressing systemic barriers that hinder equal access to opportunities. They advocate for a more active role of government in leveling the playing field, through initiatives such as affordable healthcare, accessible education, and robust social safety nets. Liberals argue that the American Dream should be attainable for all, regardless of their background, and see systemic inequalities as major obstacles to this ideal. Environmental sustainability and addressing climate change are also increasingly woven into the fabric of the liberal American Dream, with a focus on creating a future that is not only prosperous but also sustainable for generations to come.


Perspectives from the Political Middle

Individuals in the political middle often adopt a more pragmatic approach, recognizing the value in both conservative and liberal viewpoints. They advocate for balanced fiscal policies that encourage growth and investment in the nation's future while also supporting initiatives that promote social mobility and access to opportunities. The political middle values bipartisan cooperation and compromise, seeing them as essential for addressing the complex challenges facing the nation. This group often champions the role of entrepreneurship and innovation as drivers of economic growth and mobility, advocating for policies that support small businesses and job creation.


Reconciling the Views

Despite the apparent ideological divides, there is underlying common ground in the shared aspiration for a society where every individual has the opportunity to succeed. This includes acknowledging and addressing the barriers to equality, ensuring access to quality education and healthcare, and fostering an economic environment that benefits a broad spectrum of society.

The future of the American Dream lies in the ability to bridge these divides, creating policies that are not only economically sound but also socially equitable. This may involve innovative approaches to education that prepare individuals for a changing job market, healthcare reforms that ensure access for all, and environmental policies that safeguard the planet for future generations.

In conclusion, the American Dream of 2024 encapsulates a rich diversity of aspirations and challenges. By weaving together the conservative emphasis on individualism and economic freedom, the liberal focus on equity and systemic reform, and the centrist call for pragmatism and compromise, a more inclusive and attainable American Dream can emerge—one that reflects the values and hopes of a diverse nation moving forward together.

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pmraetsch
Apr 05
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

Thanks, Don. Great job of updating the three traditional political/economic views.


But a significant portion of voters have corrupted the phrase of “American Dream”to “America First” (aka MAGA). Admittedly a more political concept than economic, but one that does not seem to include compromise.


We can have common ground when discussing the American Dream with the traditional liberal and conservative leaders and merge with the middle on basic concepts.


But America First advocates seem reluctant at any compromise or ‘reconciling views’ at this point.


Ben Franklin made this statement as he signed the constitution in 1787: “For having lived long, I have experienced many instances of being obliged by better information, or fuller consideration, to change opinions even on important…


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Donald Iannone
Donald Iannone
Apr 05
Replying to

Hi Paul


Much appreciated. Enjoyed your comments. I'm glad you are a part of the conversation. Love the Franklin quote. I decided to take on the American Dream issue after I had completed a major survey of American literature. It occurred to me that maybe more people would be open to the "wealth to well-being" shift if examined from that perspective.


Take care and stay involved here.


Don

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Guest
Mar 24
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

Don, you make me think deeply and while we have a divided America I find my self moving from the conservative to the Political Middle so we can get work done for the good of all.

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Donald Iannone
Donald Iannone
Apr 01
Replying to

Hi, thank you for the post. I admire your move, as a moderate Republican at heart. Stay in touch. Please share your name with me. Here is my email: diannone@gmail.com. Don

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Larry Keller
Larry Keller
Mar 24
Rated 2 out of 5 stars.

The American dream is affected by political outlooks but I would argue transcends it. The core of the dream is a society where one can have his/her own philosophy and view of life yet find a job if not a career that does not unduly constrain those core beliefs. The job may not be a career but permits living the dream of meeting and getting to know others who are interesting. The dream also promotes meeting similar and different interesting people in ways of prompting dialog or even not engaging. In sum, it is a freedom of spirit limited only by the limitations of life itself or limitations imposed by one's self.

Politics are important as who we elect and…

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Donald Iannone
Donald Iannone
Mar 24
Replying to

Larry, as always, your words speak to deeper, often missed truths. As you know, writing a book demands us to consider the varied eyes and ears of readers. Thanks for the balance. I wonder how many people today even recognize the term “American Dream.” I think each of us is propelled by something—dreams, goals, inspirations. addictions, or affections. You’re right that it’s easier to view politics as the “devil.” For a long time, I have believed that the psyche—something deep both within us and outside us propels us. Imagination is a powerful force in the universe. That can be a dream, nightmare, or anything that calls us beyond. I’m enjoying the journey through American literature. Thank you for your thoughts.…

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Jeffrey Finkle
Jeffrey Finkle
Mar 23
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

So Don asked some folks to think about what he was doing and I try to be funny in my responses some times. So I wrote this to Don "The smart ass in me says, how does he take the book "In Cold Blood" and fit that into his thinking.  And then I thought well that might describe Donald Trump..... never mind, it was the first thing I thought about." But then I thought about the creativity of my friend Don and added "Don, you always have a different perspective and thank god you do....."


But Don, wrote back and took my comments seriously - and he added "To your point about Truman Capote's "In Cold Blood,"  he was a maste…


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Donald Iannone
Donald Iannone
Mar 23
Replying to

Thank you, Jeff. Humor is indeed a great thing. I will bear that in mind as I write this book. Out-of-the-box thinking is my strength, although my readers need to both love and understand me. Their love is more likely to come from who I am, and then they can understand my writing. Cheers my friend. Don

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economicdeveloper
Mar 23
Rated 5 out of 5 stars.

I sadly find that the people in the middle, the bridge builders have been squeezed out of the current political environment. My idea of our dream is mostly conservative, however there is a necessary balance social responsibility that needs to remain in place. If we can find away to regain compromise and inspire and foster individual effort again our beacon to the world will again burn bright. Our ability to inspire people to reach for their best effort and then allow them to reap those rewards for such output is our greatest fuel for the American Dream. Today we are polarized into Red or Blue, but our nation has always had a third color it is the white of t…

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Donald Iannone
Donald Iannone
Mar 23
Replying to

Hello economicdeveloper,


Thank you for your comment. Please share your name with me if you're okay with that.


As a point of information, the focus of my book is tracing the dream through American literature, and using that as a build point for ideas on how to the American Dream can embrace a broader concept of well-being that includes prosperity, as well as other measures of well-being.


Your reflections on the current political climate and its impact on the American Dream are insightful. You've articulated an interesting vision for a society that values both individual effort and social responsibility—fundamental elements of our democracy. Yes, to "red, white, and blue! It's disheartening to see these ideals caught in the crossfire of…


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