Thursday, August 19, 2010

The American Dream is NOT dead, and not by a long shot

The media, in the never ending support of those that would junk the U.S. Constitution, would have you believe that all is lost, the "American Dream" is dead, and it is all the fault of those Fat Cat, dirt-bag, greedy bastard Wall Streeters, Bankers, and Corporate Executives.

Well, they are 10% correct, which for them is quite the improvement. For the most part these folks couldn't find their A$$ with both hands.

What exactly was/is the American Dream? A home of your own? A small business? A steady job? Opportunity for your children? This would require a preamble or a definitions page to lay out just what these terms mean.

The American dream of home ownership is not in trouble because your kid cannot afford a 10,000 square foot mansion complete with a staff of domestic servants. A small business is not Apple Computer. A steady job should not mean 20 years of work followed by 40 years of idleness and leisure in "retirement" (at the expense of everybody else). Opportunity is not a guarantee that life will always be fair and that bad luck can be legislated away.

Politically, the American Dream was NOT to exchange 1 tyrant 3000 miles away for 3000 tyrants 1 mile away... yet that is EXACTLY where we find ourselves. Left and Right, each agitating to skin the other alive to pay for favorite government programs by winning 50.000001% of the vote and then terrorizing the other side with with confiscatory taxes, regulatory inquisitions, and social controls.

I gotta wonder... is that what the folks who fought and died (or were horribly wounded) for our freedoms really fighting for? NAFC.

The American Dream was FREEDOM from tyranny - and tyranny includes a majority that wishes to seize your assets, tell you who you can marry, enforces rabid political correctness, and exports militarism the world over in order to maintain US$ hegemony so that they may continue to raid the international bond markets in order to fund social programs here in the U.S. "for the poor and downtrodden"... all while firmly believing that they are the "enlightened class". The "Humanitarian". I pray each and every day to live long enough to see this madness come to an end.


bureaucrat said...

The American dream is still available and out there, tis true. But we have to somehow make it clear to the public that we cannot continue deluding ourselves that we can de-industrialize our country, make up for the loss of income for 30 years by taking out loans, and cross our fingers that if we just make it thru another day ...

Some general points .. give up on the: expensive vacations, home remodels & pools, new cars and clothes, fancy restaurants, ridiculous college costs, stupid and unnecessary medical procedures, etc. etc. etc.

Be satisfied with: animals as pets, and when necessary, food; no cable; walkable neighborhoods; saving and investing in REAL investments; basic cell phones; basic computers; home gyms; less house; inevitable higher taxes, etc. etc.

The American dream never meant for all of us to live like little kings and queens.

PioneerPreppy said...

The consumerism and private spending you speak of Bur is not the illness nor really even a symptom. It is simply a bi-product of cheap energy and mass media. Private spending will decline as/when it is forced to. It always has it always will. Social spending and fiat currency is keeping the needed changes from happening. That cannot last forever.

The American dream is radically different depending on what group you hail from anyway. Yet one common thread with all variations is less personal taxes and as the real wealth of the dollar declines one group is getting tired of paying for another. That will be the final straw in my opinion.

bureaucrat said...

Mass media doesn't force anyone to buy anything. ;) Cheap energy did fill in a lot of gaps, tax-wise, economy-wise and otherwise, and that end time is indeed coming (but not yet -- we are still awash in oil, natural gas and gasoline).

And you can hope for your low taxes and continue the illusion :), but they aren't going to stay low. We've already borrowed to the hilt. And why should they? Taxes go toward programs that everyone wants continued. The higher taxes will mostly have to come from the wealthy, who have gotten the best tax breaks the last 30 years.

Anonymous said...


Why should we pay higher taxes to support a Fedgov that does nothing but create problems? When is the last time the Fedgov solved a problem of any kind? At this point in the decline of empire, just about all US tax money is badly misappropriated.

Why should we pay higher taxes to support a military agenda that is more expensive than all the other nations military spending combined? Are those Afghan cave fighters more of a threat than the old USSR nuclear forces? We are not credibly threatened by any other nation out there to justify our level of military $$ hemorrhaging.

Why should we pay higher taxes when we have already spent our working lives paying the SS, Medicare, Medicaid of other people? And now they want to take ours away as we approach our older years?

Why should we pay higher taxes when it is all spent on elite groups & institutions as our national economy rots away?

Bah for higher taxes.


PioneerPreppy said...

See there is your problem Bur...

Not everyone wants the social sending or taxes continued, and most certainly don't want them continued at the current levels.

Now you will throw out your standard most spending is on medicare etc.

While I submit most spending is on education.

Then you will say thats not federal...

Doesn't matter the fed mandates it like they just did with the 26 billion and the tax payers pay for it.

The next step with States like Arizona and the 21 others now following will be with holding taxes to the fed I imagine.

But yet "everyone" wants this social spending? Your crazy if you think that. There is an entire third party now formed against this spending but they don't count?

bureaucrat said...

Marshall & Pioneer ...

If you wish to ignore than the overwhelming majority of Federal taxes go to the big five (Social Security, blah, blah, blah and blah) and most of the rest goes to agriculture supports, veterans programs, college loan default subsidies and unemployment comp, I tend to doubt anything I say is going to change your mind. If you believe government is doing nothing but wasting all your money on Isreal, illegal immigrants, overpaid bureaucrats, blah, blah, blah, I'm sure I can't help you. I deal in facts, not in whining to get attention.

at least a quarter of STATE spending is indeed for education (plus income from property taxes). Mosly for teachers. The rest of state spending (at least in Illinois) is human services (caring for the disabled), health services (states' share of Medicaid) and employee pensions (mostly teachers).

(FEDERAL) U.S. Dept. of Education spending is only $110 billion, and most of that is paying off defaulted college student loans that the Federal government guaranteed -- very little to do with classroom instruction (except in the case of the disabled).

The bottom line is ... while you can bellyache about how you think your taxes are being misspent, you are looking at the PENNIES. The DOLLARS are spent on wildly popular government programs that will never be cut back by much. The people will not stand for it. Watch these goofballs try to muck with Social Security at the end of this year. They will fail.

Anonymous said...

Let's see where our tax dollars are going...

A regional ME war which we iniated and has been draining our $$$ and young people's lives. The goal- to keep oil flowing to US and to fight terrorism. Cost 1-2 Trillion dollars and counting.

And how has that worked out? We now probably now have 1,000 times the number of dedicated terrorists ready to attack the USA as we had in 2000. And,as for energy security, the US is constantly losing oil resource ground to China which is quietly building bilateral oil agreements all around the globe as we fantasize about "free market" magic to provide our future oil needs.

Oh, education spending you say? Oh, great. We spend massive amounts on education and have one of the worst educated group of young people in the world. Most college grads cannot do basic math or even run their most basic financial affairs in a logical way. Don't even suppose these new "grads" even know what WW2 or the US Civil War was about-much less about peak oil or AGW.

Oh, healthcare- a great calling. So why do spend 2X what the other OECD nations spend and still have some of the worst healthcare numbers among developed nations?

No. Higher taxes are not the answer anymore.


bureaucrat said...

(The "third party" will never get anywhere because the only thing holding them together is this belief that, with nutcase Palin, they can have the 1950s back, when the darkies knew their place and Charley had that great lifetime job with the steel mill. Sadly, humans are either-or on every issue. Only room for two parties>.) :)

PioneerPreppy said...

Heh Bur

First off personally I am against the spending you threw out there as well. I am not ignoring any social spending...just take my word for it. OK?

I am especially against educational spending and most solidly against government funding and loans for it at least to the scale it is done to today.

I am also against agricultural support as well honestly.

My argument with your theory is that everyone wants them. I don't believe that and I think the tea party is a sign of that.

Social security is an issue because so many have paid into it they had better get something back. It is owed to them.

I am sure from where you sit everybody wants all the social spending to continue. It isn't that way from where I sit...

Oh and nice throw of the racist card. I really thought you were above that kinda thing.

Anonymous said...

See all those Predator and Reaper drone attacks around Afghan and Pakistan? All the wrong houses hit with missiles? Doors kicked in to family homes at 4am?

Do you really think that just a few of those long-memoried folks have not now dedicated their lives to getting big-time revenge against the nations behind these actions? And their economies?

So we are spending all that money to fight terrorism and our great leaders have done nothing except turn the ME into a firestorm (with the worst still to come)and to guarantee an eventual horrifying payback on the US homeland (what we want to stop DOH).

Now our leaders will not back out because withdrawal would besmirch US honor and would be a betrayal of the already fallen. So we stay and keep bleeding till it all falls apart. Yup great use of tax money.


Mayberry said...

Excellent post. To save ourselves, we need to get back to basics and common sense. The "American Dream" TM as packaged and pushed should fade into history, and Americans should get back to doing what we did best: taking care of ourselves, and enjoying the simple things in life...

Dextred1 said...


You and o'turdman on MSNBC should hook up and pretend you know how everyone feels, thinks and acts. You can tell us all again how socialism (big government) is so great. How amazing it is to end a Childs life while it plays in the womb and how everyone is a racist, bigot or crazy. You are product of your own delusions. It matters not what you say because the outcome

As they say I have seen the light, I will not depart and I will hope with earnest expectations that I will once again see freedom born in the land that first articulated a government to serve the best interests of the people based on natural rights derived from the bible, not some sniveling little government bureaucrat who is only looking out for himsel.

"It is when people forget God that tyrants forge their chains."

Patrick Henry

bureaucrat said...

Everyone see the bit on NBC News tonight about the lady challenging Harry Reid for Senate in Nevada? At first, she was telling the voters that "Social Security and Medicare should be shut down eventually." Then she got some Republican political consultants on her payroll, and now she's saying that the "Social Security Trust Fund should not be touched." Lord Almighty! Hypocrisy everywhere!

Dextred1 said...


She said that they need to be phased out(replaced with private accounts) and the paper reported that she wanted to defund SS. Bush talked about this 6 yrs ago and the whiny little dems would not reform the system. Bush was right then and the idea should gain traction now that almost everyone but you knows the system is heading for a train wreck.(also reminds me that dems fought tooth and nail against closing fannie and freddie in 2003-06) It will be hard bur but it has to happen if we ever want to return to better times.

Dan said...

Our leaders won’t back out because it’s too profitable to their well heeled supporters; it’s also why we are in Iraq to begin with. I read Donald Rumsfeld’s and Paul Wolfowitz’s call to war BEFORE Bush was elected. The pertinent question is cui bono?

Maj. General Smedley D. Butler spilt the beans on the racket back in 1935 and nothing has changed since.

bureaucrat said...

My times are just fine. :) And 90% of the people who want jobs have them, according to govt. statistics (assuming 10% don't). Good luck waiting for the "collapse." Might want to wait until we have actual shortages of anything first. :)

bureaucrat said...

Phased out and made into private accounts? You mean similar to the 401ks that workers have .. that have only an average of $60,000 in them .. the ones too many people are now taking loans against ... you must be out of your mind. :)

One thing we have learned in 30 years ... the average person doesn't know how to invest for anything, including their retirement. They don't take enough risk and they don't save/invest enough. It just isn't in them. They are too scared or too unwilling to reduce their living standard.

Social Security is the third rail of American politics. Touch it and you die.

Greg T. Jeffers said...


Adult participation in the U.S. Labor market is roughly 62.5% - the lowest in the post war era.

Please, if you are going to make assertions, check your facts first. THe U3 and U6 data points are not compiled using any formula that would be acceptable in statistical analysis (were it not from the U.S. Government). The participation rate is compiled via taxpayers vs population - a much more accurate and appropriate measure.

As I have said before... you are not really trying to add value to the discussion... you just want to argue and be contentious. Why?

bureaucrat said...

Everything I say has some basis in fact. You have a blog talking about the "American Energy Crisis."

Wanna show me where?

We have oil, gasoline and natural gas in storage up to our eyeballs. I'm not a huge fan of Mish, but he is right .. we are oversupplied in everything (due to the runup to this depression).

And for all the whining from the commentators (whom I love dearly :)), the overwhelming majority of adults who want to work are working, every month people get their FULL Social Security checks, Obama pays me every two weeks, people around the world are buying our Treasuries ...

Other than 1 in 10 people being unemployed, and a massive debt overhang that may last decades, there are no other cards to show (yet). I'm just trying to be a voice of reason before everyone starts moaning "the end is near!"

Anonymous said...

Bur, your comments are always so sunny. I feel so much better and less depressed about our economy, the national debt, our resource base, our entitlements, the war (how many are we in now?), etc. I think I'll throw out the Prozac, go outside and enjoy the day.

Remember, "always look on the bright side of life", ;)

Idaho Homesteader

bureaucrat said...

Wont cost you anything to look at your life objectively and say, right now, what is wrong? I'll bet very little, unless you are unemployed.

tweell said...

'And when Yamar lifted up his voice, they did not listen. And when he cried aloud, they put their hands to their ears, laughing. And when he showed them the cloud upon the mountains, they said it was afar and would come not nigh. And when a sword glinted in the hills and he pointed to it, they said it was but the dancing of a brook in the sun.'
We cannot know what is to be. That does not mean that we should not take precautions against troubles that we see can happen. That is only prudence.
Happiness is a state of mind, albeit one whose pursuit is hallowed by the Constitution. Peace of mind goes far towards making one happy. I'd much rather have informed peace of mind vice being an ignorant professional voter, placated by bread and circuses (oops, unemployment/food stamps and TV). That is why we are here, no?

Donal Lang said...

You guys always seem to get caught up in the details and miss the Big Picture. The USA used to make lots of money from oil, and missed out on the destruction of the World Wars which obliterated the European economies. Hence the 1920's (post WW1) and the 1950's (post WW2)were your Golden Ages and that's when you managed to acquire some very expensive expectations (more through Hollywood than healthcare!)including all this marketing crap about 'The American Way of Life' which was just created to make you all buy more stuff!

Not paying for healthcare so you can all get back to chasing 'The American Way of Life' would be absurd if it wasn't so sad. Grow up!

You're broke, you're getting more broke by the minute, you've got too many guns, too many drug addicts, too many homeless people, too many destitute, you're still in a war you can't win, and you've run out of oil.

The American Dream was just that; a dream. A few of you have achieved it but your country is fast moving towards a wealth profile approaching Latin American dictatorships; 7% of the population owning 90% of the wealth, and 40% of the population owning less than nothing!

Seems to me you guys need a reality check.

PioneerPreppy said...

Ya your right it's been pretty rough having to re-arm the English military after they left all their gear in France. Then slog our way back across Europe spending all our money to make sure the old motherland was safe while the Europeans got to spend their taxes on social engineering. BTW how is that ever expanding sharia stuff working out for ya?

I guess now that the US is broke you guys in Europe can spend your own money on defense and who knows maybe Russia won't do your leaders in like it looks they might have done to Poland.

Not to mention maybe we can use some of your medical research now.

It's all good though I am sure the North Sea has plenty of oil left.

Donal Lang said...

PP; you see what I mean?

As someone once mentioned, deal with reality or reality will deal with you. Bitching-back about Europe's problems is just displacement activity.

What are YOU going to do to fix your country's problems? Or are you still chasing that elusive (and illusive) American Dream.......?

Anonymous said...


I think you have a bad case of the pot calling the kettle black. The UK's numbers don't look so good either. The UK's government has also made plenty of promises it can't keep. You have suffered a real estate collapse as well. The day of reckoning is near for all of us.

External Debt as % of GDP: UK 416%, US 94% (2009)

Public Debt as % of GDP: UK 68%, US 53% (2009)

As for distribution of wealth, according to the Telegraph, the UK is more skewed in distribution of wealth than the US.

The sorry fact of the matter is that the whole developed world is insolvent. Further, government programs decrease savings at the lower end of the earnings spectrum, and make matters worse.


Coal Guy

bureaucrat said...

So this is how it ends. The debt from MANY countries of the world presses down on all economic activity, and everyone starts pointing fingers of blame.

"They talked and talked and talked, but no one could stop the avalanche." --- The Road Warrior intro

Anonymous said...


There is plenty of blame to go around. We all went to the party. It is reasonable to expect a hangover. I'm not pointing any finger of blame. The UK did not cause our problems, and vice versa. Both nations practiced similar policies and got similar results. Imagine that.

But, if you look at the numbers, the only way that Donal can be looking down his nose at the US is if he's standing on his head.


Coal Guy

Donal Lang said...

Coalman; i don't recall the part where I was looking down my nose at you. I don't recall anyone talking about, 'The British Dream'! (at least not since the early days of the British Empire).

As I DID say,'just displacement activity' and here's one for you, 'What are YOU going to do to fix your country's problems?'

Are you part of the solution? Or part of the problem?

PioneerPreppy said...

Seems to me Coalguy and a few others (including me) are doing what they can by attempting to tell the world and point out what is happening.

Now what is it you are doing Donal?

Donal Lang said...

Me? I work with a volunteers orgaisation called Transition (now over 300 communities worldwide including the US), which plans for a post fossil fuels economy, and creates sustainable businesses. At the moment I'm working on a not-for-profit land redistribution company which will be running by the end of the year

and a sailing/electric ferry, UK to France for 250 passengers

and creating a course for young people to learn sustainable inshore fishing a local college)and then lease them the 20' fishing boats

and we're negotiating options for land to build zero carbon Transition Homes as a Community Land Trust (CLT).

Professionally, I lecture Sustainable Development, and I'm part of a team bidding for the design of a 700 homes ecotown.

So you; you talk about it, and....??

PioneerPreppy said...

Well lets see.

Pretty single page with little information on the Landsociety site. Nice colors though :)

The fishing association looks pretty large. I used to teach Summer sessions on fishing myself for the State conservation dept. before it was de-funded because of it's lack of diversity. Not sure what funds they had since it was all volunteer. Last I heard they elected to send those funds to St. Louis though.

But since community work seems to be doing something in this discussion I also am one of the local farmers market coordinators and took on the task of local bee keeper when our old one retired last year.

Other than some volunteer work for Christian Freedom International and teaching GED classes for the State prison system (a real eye opener BTW) that's about it these days. Well along with working 50 hour weeks and prepping my farm for local production when/if my community needs it.

Now what exactly is your point? I see you have a lot of contacts with volunteer organizations. Don't we all?

I personally have little faith in alternative energy and believe a strict adherence to the Constitution and a strong community is the answer to the problems looming in the near future.

Of course I maybe wrong or behind the times on alternative energy so I leave it to more up to date folks.

Notice that is the community I live in. Not some dream community with hopes of spending other people's money to design and build it. That is what I care about the people around me and what they will need.

So again what is your point of even questioning what myself or others who comment on this blog do?