IT MAY SEEM THAT AMERICAN DREAM FANTASIES must date back to the founding of the Republic, but in fact they are a modern conceit. The phrase "American Dream" was first used in 1931 by the historian James Truslow Adams in his book The Epic of America. It meant, he wrote, "that dream of a land in which life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone." Better and richer and fuller in what way? He didn't say. Maybe in the middle of the Depression it seemed obvious. It doesn't seem quite so obvious now.
The American Dream is simple: it’s the unwavering belief that anybody — you, me, your friends, your neighbors, grandma Verna — can become exceedingly successful, and all it takes is the right amount of work, ingenuity, and determination. Nothing else matters. No external force. No bout of bad luck. All one needs is a steady dosage of grit and ass-grinding hard work. And you too can own a McMansion with a three-car garage… you lazy sack of shit.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.