It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.


Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.


I think the American Dream is what's driving everyone a little crazy

page: 2
<< 1   >>

log in


posted on Apr, 25 2017 @ 08:08 PM
Who ever said that life was easy and didn't require a lot of work was a damned liar.

Anything is obtainable, if you're willing to work for it.

posted on Apr, 25 2017 @ 09:17 PM
I feel like I'm living the American Dream and it has nothing to do with money, materialism or any of the other BS that people measure success by.

I'm crazy for totally different reasons.

edit on 25-4-2017 by olaru12 because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 25 2017 @ 10:38 PM
I think it's a mistake to equate "giving your children a better life than you had" with "buying more stuff than your parents did". Mom was raised by horribly abusive alcoholics. She did everything she could to make sure me and my brother felt safe at home, but she was an alcoholic, too. Now she doesn't drink AND I don't drink, so if I ever have kids, they will have an even better life than I did (well, as long as I also provide the amenities we've always had, creeks where you can learn to fish, woods to get lost in, fireflies to catch, etc.)

There is such a thing as a better life. Time is far more important than money. Everyone always worries about how you get and spend your money. No one cares about whether you squander your time anymore. If you cut your expenses to the bone, you get time to LIVE, to really live, and people call you lazy for not chasing their wrong-headed version of the American dream. Let them all get heart attacks chasing the Joneses. No one here knows how much time we really have left. How do you want to spend it? Is overtime in a cubicle worth that extra few square feet of house? Not to me.

posted on Apr, 26 2017 @ 05:17 AM
a reply to: olddognewtricks

I think the worst thing about concepts like "The American Dream" or as we know it in other locations around the world, the concept that growing up into adulthood is a process which contains for every person, the opportunity to get forward and make progress, is that they really are not honestly developed concepts, especially in the modern day.

I have a son. He is twelve years old. In what will no doubt feel like no time at all, he is going to be growing up and entering the world of work, and at some stage, he is going to ask me about how to get forward in life, and I am going to have to be honest with him. At present, all I am going to be able to say to him, is something approximately like this:

"Son... You want to know how to get your life moving forward. You have spent years and years getting educated, getting your little certificates to prove you can repeat someone elses lies, misunderstandings and poor interpretations of the truth, and its all been leading up to this moment, this moment that your teachers, and the capitalists who own the media will tell you, is the moment where you, as a young man, start to take control of your circumstances. But you are my son, and the least I can do is level with you.

Its all been a lie. The education you have had was designed to prepare you for a lifestyle which does not exist. It was meant to prepare you to enter the world of work, get you started on a path which would see you become an earner, a working man, a man who can, by sheer application of effort, dedication, commitment, and work ethic, achieve any height of success he puts his mind to. I hate to be the bearer of bad news son, but that is not the world we are living in today. In today's world, you can work like a machine in any field, and still fail to make enough to eat, leave alone pay bills, rent, rates, and other sundry costs of living. In the world we live in today, your determination, skills, intelligence, and work ethic do not get you a pass to a life which will please you to live, or even one that you can tolerate all that easily.

Its hard, mostly horrible, and the odds are good that whatever effort you put in, will seem like it has been wasted some, or most of the time. You should not feel bad about that, because most of the time, that is precisely what it will be. A waste. Son, I have been working hard since I was a young man, and I live with my mother. I have been working a skilled job for over a decade, and I have a car that someone gave me out the back which I have not been able to afford to drive. Hell, I cannot even afford to take the damned test to get my license at the moment, leave alone the insurance, the tax, getting the thing road ready, putting fuel in it. What I am trying to get you to understand here, is that effort and dedication only get you anywhere if the society around you values them. If it does not, then these things will not get you fed, they will not get you shelter, they will not produce results that you have been led to expect by the instruction you received at school, or the people who provided it.

Son, people in this country are being forced to use foodbanks, rather than go to the store, not because they are cheap people, or lazy, or any other negative modifier, but simply because hard work does not pay well enough to live on, or even exist on. Hard working people are being underpaid for their time and effort, meaning they are having to resort to charity, just to do what ought to be the simplest thing in the world for a working person, feeding their children and themselves. Son, when I was a lad of your age, it was common for the poor to be held up as an example to everyone else, of what happens when you do not work hard enough at school, when you do not do well enough in your exams, when you do not work hard enough at your job. But that was a lie, Son. That was a lie they told us, to make us compliant with their demands upon us kids, us young people, so that we would meekly seek whatever scraps we could earn by the sweat of our brow and the carrying capacity of our bodies, rather than turning upon the hands that starve us, seeing the situation for what it is, and taking up activism to oppose it.

I am not saying that you should not work, because you should. Its not healthy to have nothing to damned well do, after all. The human mind needs tasks to complete in order to maintain basic functions and stave off problems like depression and boredom. The body needs tasks to complete, because otherwise it inflates and becomes inefficient, making movement difficult and causing health concerns which might see it drop dead well before its sell by date. But you need to accept, right now, that your success or lack thereof, in this period in history, will not be a damned thing to do with your work ethic. It will be about whether or not you are prepared to backstab, cheat, lie, scheme, and hustle your way to success. Here is a picture of the fifty richest people in the country. This one sells arms to terrorists. This one is part of the reason our health service is collapsing. This one steals conflict minerals from embattled countries. This one runs a private military firm full of mercenaries and hired murderers of various types, who are often used when official military units simply cannot be for political reasons, and they do the shadiest crap ever done by mortal hands, for a price. The list goes on and on, shady characters, making money from shady practices, practices which exploit loopholes in local and international law, result in negative and often lethal consequences for innocent people, and who will never face a single moments justice for their crimes against humanity, until perhaps they go to be judged at the end of their time on Earth.

This was not the world I wanted you to grow up in. I have put in inhuman efforts to make a stable base of capital to work from, I have sacrificed god alone knows how many man hours of physical effort, mental gymnastics, bled freely and often, damaged myself without a second thought, for my whole adult life, to try and make things work, and I am not a stupid man, or an unintelligent one. Yet I have no stable base to offer you. I cannot manage my own affairs with the funds I have available, even after all this work. I do not know what the hell you are going to do, or how the hell you are going to be able to afford to function your existence, but I know this. If you look back on your life at some stage in the future, having worked your arse off, but having failed to make progress, just take it from me, the chances are that you will not be responsible for the fact that you have nothing to show for it.

I hope that knowing this from the start, rather than wasting time believing a lie, will help you get your head around the situation, make some sense of it all, if you can. I should be able to tell you that I envy you, being right at the start of the journey, with it all to play for. But I do not, and I should be able to, and I am so, so damned sorry that between myself and my fellow Britons, I could not carve a better future out for you, or for the country as a whole. I do not know where to go from here myself, so all I can say to you is, well...

Welcome to the jungle, kid."

posted on Apr, 26 2017 @ 05:38 AM
You know, I've thought about this since yesterday.
I've had the homes, cars, fast track career jobs with so much ambition that I sometimes forgot there were other parts of my life.
Looking back, there was so much pressure, stress and I was always on edge, jumpy.
Now, I live in the moment (other than providing for my children and their futures), I rent a temporary home, I have climbed as high in my company as I desire. It pays fairly good and, most times, I am able to keep up with bills and save both for my future and the children's.
The 'American Dream' means different things to different people at different times, I think. My current theme/plan is living on/near a beach, studio or one bed is fine and at other times of the year, living in the mountains, thinking an RV here. Working a job that gets me by (after the kiddos are grown and settled-ish), that is fulfilling and very little responsibilities. I'm tired of the stress/worry. I don't desire to keep up with the Jones's. They don't seem very happy to me anyway.

posted on Apr, 26 2017 @ 06:44 AM
a reply to: TrueBrit

Not too dissimilar from what I've told my own children.

Forewarned is forearmed.

posted on Apr, 26 2017 @ 06:51 AM
a reply to: TNMockingbird

I think your interpretation of the American Dream is quite a sane one.

More people need to turn to a "keep it simple" ethos.

I own a big house with a big mortgage. I kind of had to because with the number of kids i had nobody wanted to rent me a house. But in a couple years some kids will certainly have flown the coop and I can't wait to unload this place and go back to renting a small house. I just remember being happier renting even if the place was tiny.

posted on Apr, 26 2017 @ 07:10 AM
a reply to: olddognewtricks

Its a bloody travesty to be honest.

I consider myself a stalwart fellow in a great many respects, but when I think of my son, and the shape of things to come during his life, I worry. People say they fear war, they fear nuclear war, they fear the altering of the climate and the chance of an ice age, or other natural disasters on the horizon. My greatest fear for my son is that things remain as they are or get worse, when things like the effort/reward equation are considered.

I mean, if I knew back when I was a lad, what I know now... I probably would have just gone off up a mountain somewhere and lived with the goats and the ticks, maybe found a little cave, or a hole in a large tree trunk to live in.
There are few things as damaging to a mind as constantly expending oneself for nothing. Gaining nothing, no matter how hard you strive or how much time you devote. Its gotten to the point where not only can I not afford good therapy, but if I take a day off to get the free kind, I will be worse off no matter what. I literally cannot afford the money or the time it will automatically cost me, to get my head straight after being driven mad by the system for... well, lets see. Thirteen years of schooling, plus thirteen years of work. Twenty six years of constant, unrelenting, grinding, mind breaking, soul scarring, body crumpling effort, for what?

What do I have to show for any of that, other than mere survival!? I did not do all this just to survive. I did it so that I could LIVE, and this, what I am doing now is not bloody living, its just existence, its just eating, excreting, working and sleeping. Its NOTHING! No prospects, no future, no hope just constant, grinding pressure and no relief for ever and ever, until I am dead. That is what I have to "look forward to".

posted on Apr, 26 2017 @ 07:58 AM
a reply to: TrueBrit

Well, for better or for worse, we never know what's around the corner, do we? I've been in some pretty dark discouraging places myself. Had to look in the mirror and say "hey, made it this far! "

The main thing is that you are "awake" you know what's going on. Don't let your mind get so hemmed in that you think the lid of the box you are currently in is the actual sky. It's not. And it's largely artificial, imposed upon you. Remember, "they" are indeed shrewd and powerful. But don't give the people who seem to be running the show right now more credit than they are due. It is well within your own power to change the equation somehow. Don't waste time and energy convincing yourself it is not.

top topics

<< 1   >>

log in