Summary Of ' The American Dream '

1682 Words7 Pages
Thomas Lee
Professor Elena Savelieva-Thompson
PACS 01-25
4 December 2016
The American Dream The American Dream has historically been defined as upward social mobility through hard work and determination regardless of circumstances at birth. However, it seems that this dream has died. Those in the lower and middle class find themselves working multiple jobs just to survive. They live paycheck to paycheck and are unable to save money to allow them to buy a house and escape from their economic perils. I believe the American dream is dead because people are no longer capable of upward social mobility without getting lucky at birth due to wage inequality, rising housing costs, and retirement insecurity. Pay inequality prevents upwards social mobility which is by definition against the American Dream which indicates the dream is dying. This inequality started in the 1970s when both middle class pay and college graduation rates began to flat line while executive pay skyrocketed. According to Robert Reich, former Secretary of Labor under Bill Clinton, in 1978 the typical male worker made $48,302 a year while the typical 1% executive made $393,682. This was not inherently a problem, but in 2010 the male worker’s pay had actually decreased to $33,751 a year while the executive pay had increased to $1,101,089. The 2007 financial crash is very similar to that of the Great Crash of 1928. The top 1% at each of these times were taking over 23% of wealth of the nation. These crashes
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