NPR Series: American Dreams: Then And Now

5:31pm

Tue June 5, 2012
American Dreams: Then And Now

'My Country': tUnE-yArDs Questions The American Dream

Originally published on Thu June 14, 2012 10:07 am

Merrill Garbus is the singer and songwriter behind the band tUnE-yArDs.
Chloe Aftel Courtesy of the artist

Merrill Garbus, the woman behind the experimental folk-rock band tUnE-yArDs, wrote her song "My Country" with the state of the union on her mind. The melody resembles "My Country, 'Tis of Thee" at first but quickly veers into more chaotic territory.

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1:54pm

Mon June 4, 2012
American Dreams: Then And Now

After The Housing Bust, Revisiting Homeownership

Originally published on Mon June 4, 2012 5:44 pm

Nationwide, home sales are up, mortgage rates are down and in many places, owning a home is as attractive as renting for the first time in years.
Chris O'Meara AP

For generations, owning a home has been a key part of the lifestyle most Americans aspire to. But when the mortgage crisis exploded in 2007, it brought down the U.S. housing market — and the entire economy along with it.

The ensuing recession was an assault on the American dream of homeownership itself. The tidal wave of foreclosures, the crash in home prices and tighter lending standards have left some Americans unable or simply too nervous to buy a house.

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1:35am

Thu May 31, 2012
American Dreams: Then And Now

Right Fears Entitlements Are Killing American Dream

Originally published on Mon August 6, 2012 9:34 am

A demonstrator holds a copy of the U.S. Constitution to his chest as he attends a protest in downtown San Antonio on March 23.
Eric Gay AP

NPR is exploring what the American dream means to our culture, our economy and our politics. On All Things Considered, we explored what President Obama and Democrats think of the American dream. In this installment, the Republican perspective.

President Obama and Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney agree that the American dream is out of reach for too many people today. They disagree on how to fix the problem.

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2:45pm

Wed May 30, 2012
American Dreams: Then And Now

Obama's Own Story Defines His American Dream

Originally published on Thu May 31, 2012 10:19 am

President Obama greets diners at Reid's House Restaurant in Reidsville, N.C., last fall. While there, he talked to a college student about the importance of education — one of the ideas Obama comes back to often.
Jewel Samad AFP/Getty Images

NPR is examining what the American dream means to our culture, our economy and our politics. On Morning Edition, we'll explore what Republicans think of the American dream. In this installment, the view from President Obama.

The American dream — the idea that in this country anyone can rise from humble beginnings and succeed — is deeply woven into our national psyche. It's a promise that draws immigrants to our shores. And it's a staple on the campaign trail.

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12:46pm

Wed May 30, 2012
American Dreams: Then And Now

With The American Dream Comes The Nightmare

Originally published on Mon August 6, 2012 9:34 am

Unemployed circus clown Tim Torkildson, aka Dusty the Clown, sits on a bench on the north side of the U.S. Capitol in May.
Bill Clark CQ Roll Call

One American's dream can be another American's nightmare.

Consider: Some people long to live in big cities; others think cities have ruined the landscape. Some Americans love to drive big old honking SUVs; others see huge cars as pollution-producing monsters. For some people, the American dream is a steady office job. For others, the office is a sinkhole and the real dream is freedom from the office.

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