CNN – A majority of Americans worry about their children achieving the American dream.
A new USA Today/Gallup poll shows that nearly 6 in 10 Americans are dissatisfied with the opportunity for the next generation to live better than their parents.
It's a sad commentary on the state of our country: parents have always dreamed of a brighter future for their children than what they had.
Perhaps not anymore.
The reality is many of us may wind up working longer, and retiring later, than anticipated.
The CEO of the international insurance giant A.I.G. tells Bloomberg News that the retirement age could eventually reach 80 in light of Europe's debt crisis.
As we live longer, raising the retirement age is one way to make pensions and health care more affordable.
As Europe sinks deeper into financial crisis under the weight of massive government debt, a piece in The Daily Beast describes young European adults as the "screwed generation."
In countries like Spain, Greece, Portugal and Italy, the Baby Boomers have held onto generous jobs and benefits leaving little opportunity for their children. In Spain and Greece nearly half of adults under the age of 25 don't work.
There's an increasing sense of hopelessness as young Europeans simply give up on raising families.
And the U.S. could be next.
Young Americans are being crushed by college debt. And even with college degrees, many of them can't find jobs. Consider this: a majority of unemployed Americans older than 25 attended college.
Here’s my question to you: What does it mean when 6 in 10 people worry about their children achieving the American dream?
Tune in to the Situation Room at 4pm to see if Jack reads your answer on air.
And, we love to know where you’re writing from, so please include your city and state with your comment.
Maybe it's because 4 in 10 have already given up and know that the deck is stacked against anyone except the 1% to succeed in reaching the American Dream, why else would the Lottery be so popular?
It means that 6 in 10 know that there is more income disparity between America's 99 and 1% than in all the other industrialized nations of the world. The place to look for upward social mobility is back in Europe.
It means that plans of Karl Rove and the billionaires to choke off the middle class is working. The income gap between the 1% and the middle income is frankly shocking and distrurbing. The economic pie contrary to the free market thinkers doesn't have an unlimited number of pieces to it.
The vast majority of things we worry about never happen. BUT, when it comes to our DO NOTHING congress and our social agenda peddling President, there is great cause to worry about what the future holds. What really gets me is why are all the adults in the room, like us, standing around talking about it and not DOING anything about it? THAT is what drives me crazy!
It means that we had better elect a Democratic Congress for President Obama so he can work his agenda. We know that we do not want to return to the Bush recession.
It'll be 9 out of 10 if Romney gets elected.
It means that we are becoming a two class nation of rich and poor with no middle class. It means that if the trickle-down theory is allowed to get up and running again it will speed up this process. The only ones that will be able to afford a college education, healthcare will be the 1%. The sad part of this is that is fine with the Republicans.
It means that the slimeball politicians and five Supreme Court justices have absolutely no regard for the United States of America or its people. They all serve a higher master; money, big money.
What is should mean is that 6 out 10 people needs to recognize that the world economy has changed and in order for the U S to be robustly competitive on the global stage Americans have to dream a new and different dream.
It means 9 out of 10 minorities worry about their children achieving the American dream.
Jack, it means that these 6 out of 10 know the definition of the American Dream. Things have become so confused lately I have forgotten what the American Dream is supposed to be. I used to think it was a car, a house in the suburbs and a hamburger cookout on Saturday night. But the house and the car are both underwater relative to their worth. And the hamburgers aren't really good for you. Now all I have is "Hope & Change." But I'm not sure what that means either.
For one thing, it means Mitt Romney has no clue what we're going through – he has led a priviledged life and his kids will inherit multi-million dollar trust funds. If this means class warfare, they may have lots more money to spend campaigning, but we have more potential voters who hopefully won't be misled by the lies. Americans – make sure you're registered!
What does it mean when 6 in 10 people worry about their children achieving the American dream?
It means that the GOP has let Americans down. They left the nation in a near 2nd Great Depression and then refused to work with the president to FIX the problems that they created.
The town you just past up was Democracy. Oligarchy is just 18 miles ahead and Corporatocracy follows it by 30 miles. Depending on your point of view you're either going downhill or uphill, but; one thing is certain you're no longer in Democracy.
Oligarchy is a small little town known for its wealthy citizens and its ornate fences and walls. On the other hand Corporatacracy is a sprawling metropolis that is located down along the river that serves as the manufacturing base of the area. Jobs are plentiful but you have to live in company housing. The citizens of Democracy can rarely see the big city from the hill because of the smog and pollution.
What does it mean when 6 in 10 people worry about their children reaching the American dream?
"Worry is like a rocking chair, it gives you something to do and carrries you nowhere"
"It does not empty tomorrow of its trouble, It empties today of its strength".
Parents must go by faith, hard work, prayer, believing "my God shall supply all my need according
to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus (Philippians 4: 19).
It means 60% of our population realizes how tough a spot we're in. Our kids will pay for our mistakes and we should be ashamed because we still have not started fixing the problems they will inherit.
Sometimes we get so focused on the pursuit that the dream has passed us by and we never experienced it.
It means our government is corrupt and worthless, and only are concerned about there well being.
These days, the dream is just for rich people and corporations.
It means 4 in 10 of us are living in a world where they think the American dream is still possible. I wonder how many of them vote Republican; the people I blame for taking that dream away and giving it to those who don't need it.
It means that due to my generations greed and lack of willingness to make the tough decisions we have accumulated a debt so big that we will never pay it off until we are FORCED to take our heads out of the sand. People, please take the time to look at what our country pays just in INTEREST every day.
All it means is that the propaganda isn’t working the way it used to. Now the unholy alliance of corporate government and globalization make it impossible to hide how the deck is stacked against all of us. Not even the “news” nor Hollywood can hide the fact that the “American Dream” was never really possible for 99% of us. Now the 1% have so much power and wealth they don’t even care if we know it’s all al lie. They won, we lost. Game over.
They worry because they are the ones that acknowledge the disaster of the Bush administration, the bigger disaster of a potential Romney administration and a non-compromising Koch-Norquist congress with many members elected by people who have no idea where we really are, how we got here or how we will ever get past this impasse. They know President Obama has to be re-elected but unless there is a change in make-up and/or mentality of the congress, it isn't going to do much good.
It means 6 out of ten parents, think the deck is stacked, against their kids chances of achieving a Middle class life style or better. Even in a perfect world it isn't easy. Some of the jobs people do are extremely stressfull and or physically demanding. Telephone and Cable Line Repair People. Dentist and Oral Surgeons. Doctors, Nurses and Surgeons in general. Plumbers, Electricians, Roofers. Loggers. Air Plane Pilots and Stewards and Stewardesses. High Rise Construction Workers. Commercial Fisherfolks. Off Shore Oil Rig Workers. Lately, Pleasure Cruise Captains. Truck drivers. Construction Equipment Operators. Now, take any of those difficult jobs, and try to erase a 16 Tillion Dollar Debt hung around your neck by a bunch of crooked politicians, who by the way, are actually trying to increase the burden. Something is going to break here. Doug, Pepperell, MA.
Jack, the American dream went out the rear window when NAFTA, CAFTA and China became the primary locations for manufacturing jobs. This along with greed of the corporations has handcuffed the younger generation as we did not take the steps necessary to change our life style to adjust to a lower overall income with little or no benefits. What disturbs me the most is neither of the political parties have a real plan to correct it. Cuts and wars on one side and more spending of money we don't have on the other.
Jack, we are headed into the Abyss! The Republicans have brainwashed the country into believing their destruction of America. The people didn't create the Debt they talk about, the GOP did! So lets gut the very programs that make this country great, let's say no to our children's futures by cutting education,cheaper student loan programs, middle-class tax cuts, health care, Social Security, Highway and Bridge Jobs Programs, and send high tech jobs overseas, Really? Oh, and then make our children pay a debt they didn't create so the Rich can stay Rich! Wow, and the American people believe it.
We are doomed, Jack, we really are. Now you are blaming it on divisive politics on both sides when the President and the Dems have caved on every bill, only the Democrats have compromised, Jack. The republicans have done NOTHING!
But you believe them!
I say this coming, evil winning over with Greed and Power, I read it somewhere:
2nd Thessalonians 10
10And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.
11And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:
12That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.
Some dreams turn into nightmares and guess what, we are just in the beginning phase of the nightmare becoming a reality in our lives, young or old.
6 out of 10 people worry about their own children, but don't really worry nor care about their neighbor's children. The American dream has become competition and we Americans will do ANYTHING to achieve it.
It means that Americans are scared of the future by what our government has already done and might do to make it worse. People are losing faith in the governments ability to lead and their inability to control spending. When the interest payments on our National debt exceeds our GDP we are in serious trouble. That happened a few weeks back.
Currently, individual opportunities abound for our children who prepare themselves through education and have initiative, are honest, and have a consistently good work ethic. However, will macro conditions continue to provide such opportunities in the future? The path that our nation is following seems unsustainable to me. We may need to sacrifice the notions of deficit spending by governments, retirement before death or disability, of unlimited medical care, of providing welfare benefits to people who are capable of working, of unlimited oil to drive our machines, of only two major political parties, of ever-increasing real estate and stock prices, of allowing drug cartels to damage the lives of so many people, of engaging in nation-building, of ignoring global warming, and so forth. Instead of polarizing rhetoric, we need more statemanship in our leaders and willingness to face our problems in our citizenry. A useful first step would be to stop listening to political talk show hosts whose gospel is contention and blame.
Are you kidding?
America blows blood & money every decade in un-win-able wars.
America goes another trillion in debt every year.
The price of fuel indicates that we are running out of cheap fuel.
No job security.
Our country can't afford social security or medicarecare.
The Tea Party believes they are the ones truly entitled.
I suggest that my brothers' great-grandchildren might should be looking for a promising country to immigrate to.
Jack, when 6 in 10 people worry about their children reaching the American dream. They should worry, Thanks to John Boedner and his hoods they none every thing they can to bring America to down to its nee just to make Obama look bad they satisfied America, to win their game! when we look at our congress of to day you have worry about the future, they have done nothing in 2 years, the dead ceiling of nation is still unresolved, the states are cutting programs. In my 70 years I never seen teacher, policemen, fire fighters being lay off because congress cute money to support them. We all better worry because Congress is kill the future of our children!
It means a return to the separation of classes like before the industrial revolution. The middle class is screwed in this country and we have the current miscreants of GOP lackies in Congress to thank for it. As Mitch McConnell has said "Let them eat cake!", er... sorry that was another elitist who said that.
It means that the Progressives/Socialists, otherwise known as Democrats/Liberals have succeeded in implementing their Velvet Coup that they have been waging against America since after WWII.
They run the public schools, kindergarten thru college. They run the EPA. They are behind everything that is WRONG about America.
It is like the saying, "Due to the policies of the Obama Administration, the light at the end of the tunnel has been Turned Off".
The American dream has changed. The dream used to be owning your own house, car, and being able to provide for your family. Don't forget the freedom of living here as well. We have the right to say what's on our mind, and practice whatever religion we want. There are a lot of places in the world you get killed for that. Now the dream is owning 20 cars, owning a yacht, owning a mansion, etc. In order to accomplish immense relative wealth, hundreds or even thousands of other people must have less. I'm not arguing whether it's right or wrong, just simple economics. There are people worth Billions of dollars... If you want to think a CEO is 10,000 times harder working than a laborer, these are the consequences... If you want change I may not know the answer, but I know NOT to elect a CEO as President.
It means it's time to get rid of the GOP.
No, he / she can't. That's what it means. This is life, there's no "fair". No, he / she can't. :)
It means that reality is finally beginning to set in, Jack. For 30 years, that unholy alliance of big business and evangelical Christianity has been working to dismantle New Deal and Civil Rights programs, programs that created a vibrant middle class and brought the American dream to everybody. Those dreams have crumbled now, a sure sign that the GOP is getting their way.
It means 6 in 10 people are too stupid to think for themselves. Not every kid has to go to college to be successful. Plumbers, for example, are always in demand and make a great living. Also, money doesn't buy happiness, nor does a 4,000 square foot house. Be a consumer of what you need and not what the television makes you believe you need. Lastly, be sure to vote for the party that supports the you TODAY, not the you if you happen to win the lottery. Most Americans will need Social Security and Medicare and other social safety nets at some point in their lives.
The "American Dream" is based on a strong, vibrant and growing middle class. We don't have that anymore, since Ronnie Reagan started dismantling the middle class by his tax cuts that hugely benefitted the ultra wealthy at the expense of the rest of us.
Isn't it interesting how the military budget always manages to provide $1000 toilet seats and $600 hammers; how the big bankers always manage to find plenty of money to gamble with; how the megacorps get lots of special tax breaks for sending our jobs overseas; and, how the 1% get all those lovely tax breaks when they hide their money in the Caymans (I'm looking at you, Mitt)? Yet, when the GOP suddenly starts to worry about deficits, it's the working people who have contributed their entire working lives to Medicare and Social Security (that's why they're 'entitlements', Jack: people earned them) who are asked to give it up for the good of all.
I'm sick of it.
There will be no "American Dream" until we the people wake up to this decades long redistribution of wealth, and fix it.
It means that there is genuine belief that America's best days are over. That the country is headed in the wrong direction and that those in Washington are responsible. Over regulation, high taxation, prohibitive cost of higher education, loss of industrial capaciity, an obscene national debt and the list goes on. Rather than 6 out of 10, I would suggest it's more like 8 or 9 out of 10 that feel that way Jack. America's future looks bleak.
Gary in Scottsdale, Arizona
The American Dream is falling victim to a political leader class which is so absorbed with the glass being half empty that they don't let anyone dare imagine that it is, or eventually will be, half full and filling up again. Our President's dialogue is so obsessed with all the people and institutions that are opppressing us that he offers no hope of national redemption.
It means that the right wing agenda has totally succeeded in destroying our economy and the foundation of American culture along with it. Ever since Reagan ushered in the doomed to fail supply side economic policies conservatives have moved farther and farther to the right. The inevitable result has been constant warfare, out of control gun laws, draconian social regulation and economic chaos. That's why the upcoming election is the most important in history. If we don't reverse the trend now we never will.
The most important part of any endeavour is hope! Despite what the government does, or in our case does not do, the belief that things will get better for ourselves and our children has always been the strength of this country. When we start to lose hope, that is when this country is really in trouble. Rob in NC
It could mean that those 6 out of 10 of the concerned are of the non-elected, non-public service worker domain !
It means that there are two few people who work with their hands and minds and way to many Primadonnas who do nothing but read a few lines that someone else has written. They do nothing constructive . Just open their mouths and look pretty and in the case of a female , show a bare leg al the way up to her bottom.
Wittness Fox Blond, Large bust and long legs.
Heck, a teenagers dream come trough. METALWORKER in IL
Well, Jack it means this: The middle class is being squashed out of existence. The middle class has watched their jobs shipped over seas, just to make a bit more profit for the 1%. then that same 1% see their salaries go up by 10,15, and even 20% per year and claim they pay to much in taxes. While the middle class is burdened by higher prices lower wages, and the same taxes. It is the middle class – the small business owner, the factory worker, the teacher, etc – that made this country great. NOT THE SUPER WEALTHY, that reap the benefits of it.
Jack: The American Dream is a well alive. The panic is over slow job growth, and the real estate market which is slow. It is a panic, because the economy is improving as we speak. Job growth might besjow, but it is constantly moving forward. From 2000 to 2008, we lost over 6 and 1/2 million jobs, and it will take time to recover, and any one not willing to be a little patient will lose. The American Dream is there for those willing to risk it, and those willing to be proactive.
Jack: A dream can turn into dust or magic, depending upon the talent that it brushes against. Why do 60% worry about their children achieving the American dream?--worry is just interest on something that hasn't happen-–we want all of our children to experience the American dream--but the reality of fact--a dream is just sometimes what it is--a dream.
"The American dream never did exist. I think you're talking more about about Obama's dreams. You were large enough, and far away from Europe at the beginning of the last century, so you obtained a large influx of people and their wealth (kids included). So you grew, but today is today, and China has had no war's since Japan used to invade their boarder. No you have to think!!!!! THINK!!! A thing Obama can't do, with his little DNA investment!"
It means they did not have enough children to keep demand up or provide a workforce for when they retire. It also means they are worried for nothing, since their kids will likely inherit their property and not have to spread it around very much. It also means people worry in a down economy. It won't always stay down, provided we take out the tax incentives to cut jobs and distribute profits to the wealthy. Of course, if we keep dividend taxes at the low levels they are now, they have every right to worry – cause the economy will stay in the crapper.
I think that people worrying about their children achieving the "American Dream" is a waste of time. You equip your children to do the best they can do through love, understanding, acceptance and education and then your job on their achieving that dream is pretty much done. Most of it is out of your control anyway, so why worry – be happy. (And vote for Obama – that's a better shot than the old trickle down guys.)
If the american dream means you get everything handed to you then we are fooling ourselves. If we believe that our success is dependent on someone else's failure, then we have every right to be worried. If we allow ourselves to be divided by the powerful, we are doomed. If we become complacent in a dream of self righteousness and entitlement, we will fail. You have to earn the american dream every day.
My husband and I decided 4 years ago when our son and daughter were graduating from High School and planning to attend college that they should live at home, work and go to college. It works very well as they do not have to worry about rent or utilities and their debt load remains lower being just the student loans.
We were very poor despite my husband's college degree as he graduated right into the recession during the 1980's and so he did what was necessary; he has worked 2 jobs for 25 years. One job is at the state corrections where we have benefits like health insurance and a 401K and the second is a small contracting business he started to help make money to pay the bills and put food on the table. I work as The PM for the company and business has expanded.
What it all means is that people have to make decisions and have a plan; forget about a lot of the material things. They don't last and aren't necessary to be happy. We got rid of the credit cards, expensive cell phones with contracts, shut down the cable/satellite t.v and the land-line home phone; getting rid of the small things really added up. We don't spend much money going out to eat or see movies; we saved and paid cash for an entertainment system and we watch what we want when we want from Netflix and we cook at home, preferring to afford healthier food over cheap junk or expensive food bills when dining out.
It is natural to be concerned about your child's well being, health, and safety, etc. But to worry about their child not achieving the American dream is putting the cart way in front of the horse. Why in God's name worry about something that may not happen 20, 30, or 40 plus years into the future? It is foolish and fruitless. I guess these worry warts think that if they do not worry about this topic they are being irresponsible parents. I've been around obsessive worriers and it is not a comfortable position to be in. So to answer your question it means that 6 in 10 people will have to change their thinking on this topic. I wish them luck.
What the heck happened to Bush's no child left behind .
it means something better change and FAST or your looking at a 21st Century American version of the French Revolution complete with a guillotine on Wall Street and another one on K Street.
It means the Republicans are succeeding in their efforts to defund and destroy public education. Eventually, only the wealthy and near-wealthy will get educations, while the other 90% will be taught only enough to perform all the "support" jobs that the wealthy require – you know, soldiers, police, firefighters, pool cleaners, maids, trash collectors, hairdressers for poodles, butlers, fast food workers, yacht crew, lawn boy, caddy...the list is endless.
It means that the current economic policies are not working. To continue down the current path will put the US in the same place Europe is in now.
It means whatever the American dream is, it has become a nightmare. Jack, when you explain the European situation, it mirrors us. Our economy was payed for by our government, and we owe trillions to show for it, they like us. Funny, what is also in that mirror, is their socialism.
The American Dream...it is gone. We have politicians, corporate leaders and sitting presidents who have sold us down the path of false hope, false promises, falsehoods, and utter incompetence. Our wars, our bailouts, our national debt, our national give-a-ways, our inability to work together to solve problems that knowinly will make our dreams even weaker and, well, you name it. It's all going to poop in a handbasket and our children and our grandchildren are going to be paying for all of it; some of us elders are already in a financial abyss. Is there hope for the American Dream. Don't count on it for the vast majority.
It means bubbles burst: Dot com bubbles, housing bubbles, American-dream bubbles. Baby boomers–of which I am a card-carrying member–grabbed the dream with gusto, milked it, sold it short, literally, and Bob's your uncle. So here we are, stuck in the American decline, leaving our overweight, under-educated children a crumbling infrastructure, dicey healthcare and a seized-up political system. Which, on the bright side, still looks like heaven to most of the world.
It means that we all are going to have to work together to change to mood of our nation. We must show the rest of the world how American's can and will rise to the occasion to turn this great nation around! If we all helped each other with the little things (baby sitting, volunteering, helping our neighbors, picking up trash in public places, etc.), the hope for our children will be realized.
...And well they should. When senior adults can't afford to retire because of the high health care in the United States. The high cost of insurance and medical cost forces us to work. Not everyone can afford to move to the North and South borders to cross over for better health care and more affordable. With Bushes wars, tax cuts for the rich, corporate banking scams, and Republicans trying their best to take over our government. To continue giving to the rich and piling on the poor the debt , you think we shouldn't worry...It's come to the point now that Republicans have decided they can buy the presidency. Thanks to the money of 1% ...
"In God I trust" He will separate the sheep from the elephants one day...Then the United States may become "The land of milk and honey". But until then I will continue to feed and take care of my great grand kids as their grandparents (still working) help pay off their children's student loans. It keeps me mentally young and feisty.
And last thought, No tax cuts for the rich only tax breaks if... they put "We the People" back to work with a honest day's wage...
It means that its time we really start thinking about a revolution against the corporations and both failed political parties.
If 6 out of 10 people worry about their children achieving the American dream, I'd call that a nightmare. I didn't know the American dream was still alive. With the United States giving more and more of it's power away to the NWO, that nightmare will become reality. And that train is gathering steam!
Its a shame Jack, but how many of these 6 in 10 sat back and did nothing as their elected officials shipped good jobs overseas, or worse, voted for those elected officials.
It means that reagan won. RIP American Dream.
This is what happens when you get a Presidential Administration who knows ZERO about the free enterprise system, hates wealth and corporations who create jobs and wants to socialize our 235 yr. old country so everybody who has a pulse and has no interest or knowledge in contributing to America will be GUARANTEED everything from cradle to grave.
Disaster with a capital D !!
Read "Money for Nothing" by Gillespie and Zweig. It's in there! As long as corporate america's CEO's call shot within their cubicles of Midas type boardrooms, common man doesn't have a chance. As the book illustrates, them having gold make rules, and they make sure their freinds don't rock boat. Read it and weep, Jack.
Come on Jack, by CNN hinting that the behavior of the GOP over the last 3 1/2 years is acceptable says it all! We are done as a nation when the Republican Controlled House thinks they can Blackmail their way to legislate only their way! ANd you believe them!
I hate to sound rude but while I'm very concerned about our country, I am also concerned that many coming into the work force don't want to earn the American dream. They want it handed to them. Seems the equality that we hear about is not necessarily rich vs poor. In some cases yes, of course, but the poor are much richer than they used to be too. Hard to find a poor person that doesn't have a cell phone, lap top, flat screen TV, a/c in most climate and food stamps while those who really work for it are the ones hurting.
The American Dream consists of 99% of the people wishing they had what the top 1% have, not really expecting to get there. Worry and disappointment about preserving the American Dream for future generations lies in the realization that the system that gives us the American Dream doesn't work and can't be made to work for more than the top 1%.
As they say, it's called the American Dream because you have to be asleep to believe it, and it's true now more than ever before. I'm 22 years old, and forget the next generation, I don't think the majority of my generation with achieve the American Dream. American Nightmare is more accurate
Go back to Reagonomic. Big business and less Government. We do not need Government control, however we needed Government regulations. As the result of no Government regulations the rich got greedy and sent the jobs overseas because of cheap labor. Cheap labor is promoting slave labor and Americans are out of work.
It means that as sad as I am to say, it seems that something radical is going to happen to the world economy (beyond what has already and continues to happen) in order to "right the ship", The fact is that the news on the economy in general around the world keeps getting worse and it will come the point that there is no alternative to a radical shift to recreate the American Dream.
It means 6 out of 10 people should practice birth control or else there won't be enough for everybody
It means most of the US population, the dominant population realizes that the "American Dream" is just that: a dream. A fraud. Something black people knew for a long time. It also shows that the American Empire is in a state of decline. Probably a slow decline. But look on the bright side, Empires can decline and collapse, and restart (China) so a collapsing empire is not guaranteed to 'die' like Rome.
It means what we all know, but don't ever speak about – people are having too many children – and if we don't wake up as a species and start controlling the population – we are doomed. There are only so many resources and jobs to go around – yet more and more mouths to feed are being born every day. People having children that can't even afford to take care of themselves. Religious families having 12 to 14 kids who will all need jobs and want their own kids. It has to stop. We have to take control of population and limit who can have babies and how many they can have. Yes, I know this doesn't fit with many people's religious beliefs, but reality is needed here.
It mean they better stop voting for democrats.
It means the reality of businesses sending US jobs overseas in search of cheap labor is starting to sink in. As far as college debt, many colleges are shareholder owned and profit is their only motive. But we get what we want since everyone complains the government shouldn't be subsidizing education and then wonders why education funding is drying up. Not a problem for the rich though.
It means that the Spreadsheet Generation is a failure and does not produce the breadth of jobs needed to keep everyone meaningfully employed. A handful of companies and organizations controlling the world doesn't make it any better either.
We need to create real opportunity for those who can lead others so as to produce more factories, research and other opportunites for people of all ages to use their talents and skills.
It means the American people need to understand the consequences of elections. Particularly the Congressional elections, who ever wins Congress dictates fiscal policy. We need to take our heads out of the sand in November!
A very small number of people have contrived to control the government. They work things to their advantage, which is detrimental to the vast majority of people. They use emotional issues and repeated lies to convince people to vote against their own interests. They have conflated poor with bad and blame the victims for their misery instead of recognizing that they have deliberately created those conditions for their own profit. They believe life is a zero sum game. Which means less and less for the rest of us, until something happens to change the system.
It means that the Obama administration and the do nothing Democrats and Liberals have conditioned some kids today that they don't have to work for a living. It means that the low esteem kids can go around and have babies out of wedlock and the government will take care of them. You don't see this happening in China and most of Asia. Those kids work when they're ten years and go to school at the same time.
That's the reason the Democrats want to "tax the rich". After they tax the rich more and they'll be screaming to tax the rich again and again. The end result will be, no rich people to tax anymore. Everybody will want a free ride.
There are 3 things wrong with our country today. One the complainers like on this blog have been brainwashed and are not smart enough to understand the consequences of their complaints. They have to blame someone and of course it's Bush and the Republicans and now Romney who hasn't even been in office yet. . Second, the people that work hard will always get ahead. That's why China and the Asians countries will surpass us big time in 20 years. The third is, the unions will eventually destroy this economy. You can't have a minimum wage that pays 10 times the minimum wage in Asia.
Compare the large corporations today that are union and non union. IBM is non union and they are very succesful. Take GM, they rob the shareholders, the bond holders and the tax payers. Matter of fact the unions now own GM. GM's stock has dropped 50% since they offered their IPO. During the same period IBM's stock has gone up 80%. Who would you rather work for GM or IBM? Liberals/Democrats need to wake up.
It means Corporate Greed and the 1% are destroying our Nation
It means that the Republicans' economic policies have trickled down to parents' basements where their grown kids are now living.
Carol in Northampton, Ma
This is a great question Jack. Sadly this poll is an indication that America is in decline. I am 63 now. Things have been pretty good for me. But now, all I worry about is what will be good for my 3 1/2 year old granddaughter. When it come to politics, I always vote for those who I think will make the world best for her.
Way too much doom and gloom here, Jack. My parents lived through the Great Depression and World War II. They went on to build this country up and expand it's economic power around the world. Every generation has the opportunity for that kind of greatness and innovation. We shouldn't give up and we should quit whining about this. The future belongs to those who dream and who seize the moment. If we have forgotten that, then we really are in deep trouble.
What it means, Jack, is that the Baby-Boomers have sold out the next generation in order to hold on to their own positions. It's like they don't trust us enough to take care of them in their old age, so I suppose they'll be taking care of us through welfare and other tax-funded socioeconomic safety nets. I'm pushing thirty, myself, and I can already see the downgrade of the American Dream in my own generation.
It means that 4 out of 10 Americans are living in a bubble. The American dream is gone! Killed by Wall Street and corporate greed and there's not a damn thing we can do about it. Thank you Supreme Court and Citizens United.
It means that the gap between "haves" and "have nots" is real. It means that it's time to help people take personal responsibility for their lives with a "hand up" and not just "hand outs". It also means I am my brother's keeper.
40 years ago we called it the "Carter Malaise" but thankfully we pulled out of it and we'll pull out of this too...but only after suffering a lot of pain.
Well jack it means they are realists. things are alot tougher now and are only getting tougher. soon everyone will be placed on Govt owned housing projects because they cant afford a house anymore. and to add to that Govt job placement because most of all the jobs will be in china. our future is bleak and our shildrens future is even bleaker.
The American Dream is a fantasy. We live in a technological society where the birth rate is greater than the potential for job creation. Guess we will have to find a few more wars to engage in so that defense contractors don't have to lay-off workers. Or do these contractors outsource those jobs?
It "means" some more people answered another leading poll question the way they were set up to answer. Who wouldn't be worried at this point, especially with deficit hawks like you constantly sounding the alarm bells. Dumb poll, dumb question. If you're really "concerned", get those octogenarians out of the work force.
It means the parents are doing all the worrying and the children are just waiting for them to worry themselves to death.
Our Children??? Lets get real. I'm working my tail off just to struggle and I'm 49. Our kids don't stand a chance. Especially when our politicians are over paid for doing squat. I don't blame Obama. I blame them all. What does it mean. We're screwed!
I think it means we have too many lawyers in the house and senate controlling our destiny. What happened to fair representation? We need more teachers, engineers, doctors, blue collar workers, accountants, scientists etc., to represent the other 90 something percent of the working world.
It means that 6 in 10 people are caught up in the moment. All you hear is bad economy, worsening debt crisis, expanding terror network... doomsday prophecies. We, humans, are naturally pessimistic and will be pleasantly surprised when everything turns around (as it always does) due to hard work.
Jack, it means George Carlin was right.....
"The owners of this country know the truth: It's called the American dream because you have to be asleep to believe it."
Jack, what does it mean? It means that the Koch brothers and the others behind the subversion of the country are achieving their goals. They want a two tiered society made up of the haves and the have-nots. Their values were shaped by the John Birch society, and the only change is that they “seemed” to have removed race from the equation of producing the social void. Bring back the days of 95% taxes on such people, and the equality that this country once experienced, will return, if not we are destined to being another failed empire within the history of civilization.
I came from Slovakia to live American Dream. I got educated in U.S. Had a great job until I got laid off. Now I am looking for a job for over 3 months. I don't know when I will be able to find a job. I would love to work. I am thinking of going back to Slovakia just because I have better social and financial stability there. It seems that I will not achieve the American dream. I spend 12 years being here, where I invested all my money on education and becoming U.S. citizen. Now I am facing reality of going back. I don't know what will happen next month. I hope that Obama will loose and Romney will send positive signal to investors so they will see positive expectations. Obama is the cause of his stupid policies that nothing is improving. He should be an English teacher.
It means people are sheep and need to wake up
"...because it's called the American Dream for a reason. You have to be asleep to believe it."
Mark from Boston
To me it means that they probably have a lot more important things to worry about than their children's future. Comments like this are just cop outs. Rather than "worry", do something about it! Get involved, understand what is going on in Congress and just who is pulling the strings in this world. Worrying will not change anything, but it will generate stupid questions such as the one that I am answering.
It means that the self-serving CEOs ot the major corporations only think of their short term profits . Outsourcing jobs ensures continued high salaries for themselves while crapping on the workers of the United States. Some kind of intervention will be required to end this un-restrained Greed, so our younger generation won't have to join the ranks of the 8%+ un-employed in this country!!!!
It means that Washington D.C. has seriously screwed the pooch here. I'm just over 18, and I can tell that college debts will crush me, even after scholarships. With 6 out of 10 Americans thinking we'll be worse off than the previous generations, and myself seeing how dreadfully Washington D.C. is working right now, I honestly can't disagree.
It means that if you are not willing to do what it takes to obtain the dream (learn a second language, work in a field where there is a shortage, like RN, save every cent that comes your way) then the dream is indeed dead for you.
It means the republicans are having way with the running of America, because after all it's their love of money that's really important to them. not students, families, or anyone not putting money in their pockets. Everyone should pick up their dictionary and read the definition of bribery.
This isn't rocket science. Bush lied us into two wars when he clearly could have killed UBL at Tora Bora (60 Minutes)
Add to that the grand theft of homeowners equity by Countrywide, Ameriquest and 40 other firms just like them, the derivative losses WE had to repay, the massive losses from the 1000's of pension funds who bought the bonds consisting of these home loans, and and obstructionist Congress that will NOT allow Obama to succeed....and there you have most of it.
Add to this the major corporations who are sitting on billions worth of cash and not hiring? All these Republican executives are doing is mimicking Boehner and Cantor...they want Obama out.
It means it is time to break the log-jamb in Congress, time for Statesmen/women to stand up and pledge allegience to the US Citizens rather than Grover Norquist. "What's good for Bull Moose is good for the country" (Plutocracy) is the road to failure.
As a 19 year old who graduated in 2011, I can definitely understand how so many are losing hope when it comes to the future. I think a big mistake a lot of students are making is going to school and assuming debt immediately after graduating high school. I have been working for the last few years specifically to be able to go to college without a accumulating an excessive amount of debt. I am also taking my time to choose a promising career. I am already making a median income at a blue collar job. I would definitely love to make more in a career that I love, but that takes a lot of planning. Secondary education isn't what it use to be. Graduates are not paid as much with a degree as they were in the past.
Jack, it shows that the post boomer generations are getting screwed in combination with the "squeezing out" of the middle class. The boomer generation gets all the perqs but at the cost of the dismemberment of the entitlement system, horrendous national debt, bankrupt pensions and diminished overall quality of life. Is this what the war time generation fought for in World War II? We are regressing as a collective society to a period of haves and have nots, of employed versus unemployed and underemployed. Mit Romney says he created jobs at Bain Capital. Yeah, a bunch of part time jobs at Staples and pizza parlours; jobs which the up and coming generation are having to string together to make ends meet. Is this the legacy the Boomers want to leave?
It means many of us are waking up to the poor choices we as a society made over the past several decades. Sure Americans are saving now, and living more sensibly, but it took our economy almost collapsing in 2008 to do it. We should not worry about if our kids will do better than we did, but worry they will be able to do as well as we did, because if they spend and live like the last generation it won’t happen. Education, saving, debit management, discipline of needs vs. wants, must be a daily concern. How does the saying go, “the time to fix the roof is in the dry season, not during the storm.”
The American Dream is now a pipe dream. The 99% are having to work almost until they die in order to make modest livings. They can't afford to retire, and because of that dilema, the up-and-coming children looking for work haven't got a chance. And don't forget the majority of jobs in the U.S. have been farmed out to China, so jobs are few and far between. Even getting a college degree doesn't help. The jobs are mostly on the wing to Asia. How can anyone dream the dream anymore?
It means the "ALL WE CAN DO AND SAY IS NO GOP" needs to be voted out of office and get people elected that will compromise. President Obama has given these morons item after item that could help immediately and many actually were for them before he presented those to them and the it turns partisan and a resounding NO and everybody gets hurt. When you have a new nominee that defeated someone that tried to compromise state that his version of compromise is "the democrats changing their minds to his way or the highway" this country is in serious trouble if we elect people like that as was done in 2010 with the teabaggers and now totally do nothing congress.
American Dream? Most Americans feel as if they're being chased by Freddie Krueger
Only 6 of 10? It means 40% of the people in America are delusional. We are in the dumper, & everybody knows it.
It means its time to redefine the American dream. Let's pay teachers better, so that it becomes a wanted job. The better education we give the kids the better the united states can compete. The government hasn't had a problem telling people and some companies what to do let's do the same with universities. We can only get better by getting smarter, until that happens the American dream is redefined to be having a job that pays enough to cover most bills
What It may very well mean Jack....unless "things" change, and soon is. Real class warfare, violent and deadly. Under the quise of being anti abortion, anti gay, anti science and anti environment...Republicans will pursue their real goal of absolute supremacy for themselves, the wealthy and corporations that help them stay in office . The masses of once middle class, the poor and women will be told to "eat cake". We know what happened the last time some "monarch" said that.
I made big mistake in my life for going in college. It's worthless. if i knew what i know now i would never go to college. I am working in field that required high diploma. If there's way to return my college degree to get it a refund so that i can pay my debt i would be the first. God bless America.
I'm 58. It means that my generation is used to living on credit, resulting in multiple mortgages, extreme credit card debt, Grover Norquist no-tax pledges, waging trillion-dollar wars and not paying for them, and continuing to elect people who tell us we can get something for nothing. My generation is the anitthesis of the "greatest generation" who lived through the great depression and WWII and knew what sacrifices actually meant to make a better world (and pay for it) for their kids.
What does it mean when 6 of 10 people worry about their childrens future, something most don't realize. Automation is taking over the job market. It does most of the picking of fruits and vegetables, it does a significant amount of building our products and now it is doing the jobs of researchers and office workers, bankers and architects and soon lawyers and doctors. If the jobs didn't move over seas then they have become automated. Cheaper labor than human employees and it is our future, believe it or not. L!ook closely and you can see examples everywhere
It's not just the economy; it's an increasing population in a world with ever decreasing resources. We could solve our economic problems worldwide overnight and we'd still be in deep trouble. But no one wants to talk about that. It's easier to just gripe about how every problem is the fault of our politicians or our screwed up system (economic, educational, social, etc., pick one). Until we all decide to grow up and start taking responsibility for the problems we're creating for ourselved the world will continue to spiral down the tubes.
We have shipped too many jobs into cheap labor markets in other countries. We are the worlds' big ticket consumers and we are buy all of our Television sets from China, our appliances from Mexico, and many of our vehicles from all over Asia. When we call a roofer in Arkansas, he comes out to supervise 10 illegals to roof your home. The same applies to house framing. What is left are jobs at Wal-Mart or McDonalds. Our nation of shopkeepers are selling mostly goods from other countries. Try to find American made blue jeans or shirts. I haven't heard a solid plan from either candidate for President.. I hope CNN and other media will ask these yahoos and any candidates for congress what they are going to do to bring industry back. Each manufacturing job creates other jobs in the supply and distribution chains. All I have hear is less regulation and less corporate tax. The same guys want to let American Companies bring home their profits from other countries tax free. That just reinforces their concept of profitable business.
My husband and I have worked hard to put our children through good schools. Our 24 year old daughter graduated with honors from an excellent university on the west coast. She began looking for work in San Francisco and it took her almost a year and a half to get the excellent job she has now. During that time, she took temp work through an agency, wrote at no pay for a local website, and developed a group of families who paid her to baby sit. She needed very little help from us to pay her bills because she was always working at something. Both her father and I did the same thing when we started out in the world, and gradually worked up to wonderful positions in our chosen careers. We are proud of our daughter and fully expect the same thing from our younger daughter, who will graduate in two years from a good university. Nobody ever told us it would be easy to succeed, but we did it and our kids can too. All it takes is hard work, determination, and a willingness to take any kind of job until the "perfect" job comes along.
It means that four out of ten people are dreamers! Woe to the youth, beware the American Nightmare!
It means the Republican Party and the 1%ers are succeeding. Kill education, take away all rights of gays, polute the enviroment, keep women "in their place" , let the NRA are everyone to the teeth, tax breaks for the most wealthy of Americans and this will be a Republican paradise. How sad...
It is far past time for Americans to open their eyes and inform themselves with the facts. Greed has increasingly dominated Washington and Wall Street for the past couple decades, they go hand in hand. Our Supreme Court justices have now exasperated the problem and stomped out the voice of the people with the passing of Citizens United which allows the influx of unlimited, obscene amounts of money into our political system. Until We The People come together from both sides and demand a Constitutional Amendment to place a finance limit on all campaigns we will not get our democracy back. We must ask ourselves what 3 billion dollars does to our election cycle and how many promises are made for that money, there is nothing left for the people once those 3 billion dollars worth of promise are fulfilled. We The People should be appalled at billions being spent on an election cycle while children go to bed with hungry tummy's, millions of Americans are in need and our infrastructure continues to crumble. Why are We The People not demanding for an end to this insane influence on Washington with billions of dollars which should be reinvested in our country in order to keep the American Dream alive! It is up to us now, there are greater power in numbers than we know. Stop the politics of divide and conquer, billions into the Washington's pocket to influence legislation effects all of us on both sides. It's time we realize this and come together and fight the greed that corrupts Washington and places our Democracy in jeopardy!
It means that too many cooks have spoiled the broth. In a country where everyone has a louder voice through mass media and social networking our leaders are forced to try and please everyone instead of being allowed to make the hard decisions necessary to turn things around. We rank 25th in the nation when it comes to education... but yet our leaders are still listening to those uneducated masses insisting on having things done their way. It's like letting the five year old decide what's for dinner insteand of leaving it to the parent to decide what's best. We've all been dining on ice cream and cookies for years. Now it's time to eat our vegetables.
It means we should pull the food stamp programs so that the other 4 will get on the ball with the rest of us and start marching with those pitchforks.
It means we have failed to keep government under control and government has failed to keep Corporate America under control. It also means we have become the most compliant and apathetic country on the face of this earth. We are on our way to what the German peoples were during the Nazi Regime...blind followers.
It means we have had too many spoiled generations in a row that don't recognize the opportunities all around them. Talk to an older 1st generation immigrant to our country to realize how good we have it here still. Don't listen to the 2nd and 3rd generation spoiled brats that want to blame others for their lack of a 6 figure income.
It says that people have no faith in the people running our nation. Involement problems of other nations seems to be more of a priority than taking care of the needs here at home. The"One World Order" needs to end.
It means that if Romney and company gets in the number will be 9 our of 10 will be deeply worried. I think that Romney does not care how bad shape the Country is in because he intends to strip out all of the money etc. and skip off to another Continant to live his life out. He will be the downfall of America. He and the Koch's will be living the life of luxery and we will have nadda.
The destruction of the American family by groups determined to change our society to a 'modern' model where women abandon babies at birth to work, abort them because of "health issues" and claim an unborn baby has less rights than other humans simply because of politics and the notion that killing children is a right.
How can America be great when you have the family unit so full of holes a child stands less of a chance to succeed than when we used pencils and books instead of computers.
Jack Cafferty sounds off hourly on the Situation Room on the stories crossing his radar. Now, you can check in with Jack online to see what he's thinking and weigh in with your own comments online and on TV.
About Jack Cafferty
Subscribe | Send Feedback