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Old 11-15-2016, 08:48 AM
 
Location: Lakewood OH
21,699 posts, read 23,655,251 times
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I never wanted "two cars, boat or RV, house that is paid off, etc"? Not my dream American or otherwise.

My dream was to be able to retire and be able to take care of myself in my old age and be able to do the things I wanted to do. For the most part I've fulfilled that dream.
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Old 11-15-2016, 08:52 AM
 
1,504 posts, read 631,124 times
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Born in 1950..my dream is that my adult kids survive and my grand children do well. After that all I want is a little bit of cash so I do not have to beg...a clean bed and a roof over my head...and continue my wonderful affair with a beautiful woman who is twenty years my junior...that is my dream....I do not need two cars or any of that crap...if I want a boat...I can rent it for a day...CAR? She has a car and my driving permit has expired...oh well - she us an expert driver...THERE...this is retirement....a tiny amount of steady money and a chick with wheels....I think I am 18 all over again.
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Old 11-15-2016, 06:14 PM
 
12,825 posts, read 20,132,535 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Perryinva View Post
When you were born has nothing to do with success, financial acuity, the American dream, happiness, or a comfortable retirement. All this generational stuff is nonsense. There have been wealthy and poor, long and short lived, early retired and never retired in every single generation. Media hype so that excuses can be made and conflict generated for attention. Certain facts can make certain experiences different but it is the individuals desire to succeed and doing what it takes to get there that makes the difference. In both mine and my wifes families we have fairly successful to practically destitute on both sides. And every one of us is totally different in what they considered important in life and how they handled it. If the OPs huband is a financial fool, or a materialistic pursuant, it has nothing to do with being a Boomer. No previous generations on my side of the family ever were market investors or had pensions. My wives father had one (airline) and was a poor investor. 4 out of 21 of our generation has them. 7 out of 21 finished college, with 5 of 21 fairly comfortable with savings and set for retirement. 1 out of 26 of the children of our 21 have any financial sense with 7 of the 26 college grads or in college. I see none of the children of our generation even one iota concerned with their retirement future. The scary theme amongst them is "it will all work out somehow" and they expect to inherit from their parents success, if there was any.
Actually, it matters overall. Outcomes for GIs were overall good, outcomes for Silents were very good, Boomers have been good but trailing off among younger ones. Thus far, X is in trouble. Millies maybe too early to tell but not a good start.

There are stats out the yin yang on all of this.

Sure, within a given age band some individuals do better and some do worse. But the collective overall data I described are obvious and overt.
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Old 11-15-2016, 08:57 PM
 
14,258 posts, read 23,979,216 times
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My "American Dream" was to own a modest home, a modest (but completely reliable) car, and to own a beagle mutt. Well, two out of three ain't bad.

It is so much fun doing what I want to do when I want to without haveing to worry about life in general.

No more drama in my life.
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Old 11-16-2016, 03:36 PM
 
1,504 posts, read 631,124 times
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My parents bought a little shack back in the 50s. It was a rural area with a lake ...kind of a poor mans resort town. Then they bought a bigger shack....actually cottage right on the lake..then my mother insisted on making it bigger and buying up the property next door.

That was along time ago...the shack turned into a nine bedroom house and from what I understand it has been flipped 12 times by foreign investors. The place is now worth over 4 million dollars...and owned by people from Hong Kong...who cut down all the trees we planted...and the crystal clear waters of the lake are no more...the lake is dead - you can not even swim in it anymore. The lake is surrounded by expensive homes and it breaks my heart how heaven went into the sewer.

So us baby boomers did have it good back in the day...not anymore. We are all about just trying to survive.
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Old 11-18-2016, 05:05 PM
 
3,939 posts, read 3,259,672 times
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My own dream of being an American and prospering was offset by the draft and other factors present in the sixties, but learning your way into that space where prosperity is reconciled with a healthy dose of reality really is a help, beyond the immediate limits it offers. My grandchildren won't have those experiences which allows a realistic view of things, no, they are certain of their superior knowledge and think that the table will be all set for them. I had little expectations so I wasn't surprised at the early days lack of money.

In the city I grew up in, the steel mills, shipyards, lumber mills, pulp mills, and many other businesses were the backbone of most all of the immigrants success, today most are shuttered so I don't know what the dream will be for those not fortunate enough to transcend all of that even while getting a first class education. In my era a strong desire to work and earn were all that one needed.

I'm in my seventies and happy for what I've managed to accomplish in my lifetime, the American dream was, and is, part of the mythological bluster that brought a pile of foreigners here in the early nineteen hundreds, and still persists for the johnny come lately's currently coming here. Life, whether in America or elsewhere, is largely what one can make of it. In any foreign nation you can see the winners and losers, America is most likely no exception in that regard.
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Old 11-18-2016, 06:11 PM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
22,546 posts, read 39,924,861 times
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It is MUCH easier to be a non-national 'winner' in the USA. Very few countries allow this, fewer countrymen will support foriegn nationals in business. Quite unique strength to USA. You see it everyday, and should be proud that we allow this. A wise leader / community would leverage this benefit to a huge national strength. There is nothing EZ about being successful in USA business. Many countries subsidize businesses, yet have Very low success rates
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Old 11-20-2016, 02:51 AM
 
6,353 posts, read 5,156,240 times
Reputation: 8527
Quote:
Originally Posted by O.A.Bachlow View Post
My parents bought a little shack back in the 50s. It was a rural area with a lake ...kind of a poor mans resort town. Then they bought a bigger shack....actually cottage right on the lake..then my mother insisted on making it bigger and buying up the property next door.

That was along time ago...the shack turned into a nine bedroom house and from what I understand it has been flipped 12 times by foreign investors. The place is now worth over 4 million dollars...and owned by people from Hong Kong...who cut down all the trees we planted...and the crystal clear waters of the lake are no more...the lake is dead - you can not even swim in it anymore. The lake is surrounded by expensive homes and it breaks my heart how heaven went into the sewer.

So us baby boomers did have it good back in the day...not anymore. We are all about just trying to survive.
Sorry to hear that. Some of us had it not so good back in the day and are finally thriving.
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Old 11-20-2016, 07:29 AM
 
Location: RVA
2,164 posts, read 1,265,106 times
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To BayareaHB: I do agree that there are trends and overall generalizations about the numbers that are more comfortable, but they relate, IMHO, MORE to what was expected of someone at the time, than the opportunities that existed, exept for maybe the very latest generation, where opportunities for a less educated but hardworking person are more limited.

The work ethic and acceptance of doing without in order to do better has declined with each generation. Each generation wants more for less effort, and matures later than the previous. In general. But that does not have be a definition of anyone. It is a personal choice.
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Old 11-20-2016, 08:54 AM
 
9,188 posts, read 9,267,265 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by janedoe1972 View Post
I am a Generation X in a relationship with a Baby Boomer and my idea of The American Dream is so radically different than his. I don't believe you need a boat/RV or even to live in a house to be happy. You like your job, are content with your trailer/condo/apartment, have enough money for bills and savings as well as a little entertainment on the side, and have a family who loves you...THAT is my idea of The American Dream. But that isn't enough for my significant other. He just cannot bring himself to count his blessings and be happy. He says it has nothing to do with me...it is just something he is upset with himself about, that he didn't achieve HIS idea of success. He is even convinced that if we do not live in a house (with a mortgage, not a rental house) by the time our son is in school that other kids will make fun of him.
Money is a critical issue between couples. I don't think these kinds of questions have right or wrong answers. The question simply is: Can you agree on something that will make both of you happy? If you can, you will have a happy marriage or relationship. If you cannot, there is likely to be conflict.

I am not judging you, I am simply offering my opinion on your lifestyle. It would not be enough to satisfy me. I don't so much call it the "American Dream" as much as I call it what it takes to make us happy. Let me give you an idea though what it takes and it is plenty:

1. College for my children.

2. A good car for my wife and myself, plus a plan where our kids work and own good cars with financial contributions from us, their parents.

3. Two homes. One is where we live and work. The other is in a warm spot to go when the winter gets cold further south.

4. Travel every year to place like Europe, Australia, or New Zealand. I also include a trip to somewhere in the USA that is far from our home that we want to see.

5. Good health insurance for all members of my family.

6. Regular progress towards a good retirement I intend to take later in life (probably age 70) because I enjoy my work.

7. Job satisfaction. It is not simply enough to earn a decent living. One should like one's job and actually be either excited, or at least satisfied, to begin the work week each Monday. Being able to have some control over a work environment is good and to be surrounded by pleasant or at least reasonable coworkers.

I tend to believe all or most of these are reasonable achievable goals for people who are ambitious, educated, and not afraid of hard work. I have also found that those who have dreams and a strong sense of accomplishment tend to do better in life than those who just want enough to get by. The first step towards getting something is to want it. The way you go about getting it makes the difference, but it all starts with a dream.

I'd encourage you to maybe dream a little more.
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