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Chris LoCurto

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November 28, 2012

Where’s My American Dream?

November 28, 2012 | By | 17 Comments">17 Comments

The first part of this week I’m in Denver speaking to a group of WinWholesale business owners. It is absolutely incredible to ge the opportunity to speak to so many people who leave the cave, kill something, and drag it home everyday! And because of that, they make killer money! What a concept.

No one in this group is sitting around waiting on the government to change their life…well…in a positive way. None of these folks are complaining about how they can’t get ahead in life. They are…wait for it…WORKING HARD!

And to meet this group you would find that most of these folks are just regular guys who wanted a better life and weren’t willing to sit around complaining about what they DON’T have. The gentleman who is hosting me and put this event together, Kyle Buxton, literally jumped off a backhoe and started working at WinWholesale Companies to build his future, and now he owns MULTIPLE businesses within the company!

I am meeting guys who came out of working in construction, and are now running 15 million dollar businesses! Oh, and by the way, WinWholesale Companies pay reeeeeally well when you’re winning with your business. I mean REALLY well.

How is it possible that so many folks, coming from regular walks of life, with not much experience, and no inheritance or help from the government, are winning so well personally? I dunno…must be luck, right? At least that’s what some of their friends and family say about them. “Wow, you sure have been lucky!” Uh, yeah, lots of hard work and diligence turns into…luck. Is it any wonder that the luck mentality is still siting at home in their lounge chair waiting for something to happen?

I can tell you this, I am absolutely proud and amazed at the opportunity that WinWholesale Companies offer so many. And they can’t get good people who want to work hard and make a lot of money fast enough! The President, Jack Johnston, let me know that.

Question: What are your thoughts on how the American Dream looks now? 

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  • http://www.DavidASpecht.com/ David A Specht

    My thoughts mirror Jon Henry’s to some degree. I have listened to both sides of this equation and I believe it comes down to upbringing. (In the interest of full disclosure, I lean more toward “get Government out of my way side.)

    I was brought up to believe that it takes self-started hard work to attain “The American Dream.” — whatever that dream is. There was never a thought of asking for any type of help, assistance, leg up, or other advantage.

    When I went to work for the family business, my father told my supervisor, “If he doesn’t carry his weight, fire him.”

    As I grew older, I made friends who didn’t grow up like me. They, more often than not, grew up in a broken home — making ends meet with the help of various forms of government assistance.

    These folks grew up to believe they were dealt a short hand, and it was the government’s job to help them — either to survive or get out of their situation.

    Many of my friends with this point of view are very educated, community minded people. I have a great deal of respect for them.

    What I learned is that we can’t begin to understand the mindset of “the other side.” However, we must not paint people on either side as “lazy,” “privileged,” “on the dole,” “too wealthy,” etc.

    I firmly believe if you work hard and take responsibility for your life and actions, the sky is the limit. That being said, I acknowledge there are those who believe they can’t get there on their own — and it is almost impossible to convince them otherwise.

  • http://www.janabotkin.net/ Jana Botkin

    I’ve never been quite sure what “The American Dream” means – home ownership? Property ownership? Financial prosperity?

    Initially, it probably meant freedom to pursue whatever floats your boat without governmental interference.

    If that is still the definition, the “Dream” is getting a little frayed around the edges.

    In truth, I am working harder for less and less and it has me a little bit nervous. Lots of self-reminding going on these days about my hope being in the Lord, not in the $.

  • http://www.toddliles.com/ Todd Liles

    The American Dream is about freedom and the pursuit of happiness. PURSUIT. As in, go do some work. Get smart. Find a way to make it happen. I think the America Dream still exists in the world (Not just America) I just think there are a lot of Americans who are too lazy too pursue. Come on folks – Get to work!

  • http://www.ricardoequips.com/ Ricardo Butler

    This American Dream thing has turned out to be an American nightmare. I’ve always tried to steer and educate my family with biblical principles on God’s Will vs. the American Dream. God wants us to not only prosper in finances but in all the areas of our lives. The American Dream in my opinion and experience has been the rat race for the next shining thing until you get tired and burn out socially, financially, spiritually, emotionally, etc.

  • Guest

    For me, the dream is freedom.

    Freedom to say “no”.
    Freedom to pursue my joy every single day.
    Freedom to live life on my terms.Freedom from debt.

  • http://www.joshuarivers.net/ Joshua Rivers

    For some the “American Dream” may be a certain lifestyle: rich, famous, having lots of stuff, etc. This, however, should not be the goal. What happens when you reach that lifestyle? What happens to the dream?

    The American Dream (in my opinion) can be summed up in one word: opportunity. It is a journey – not a destination. The Declaration of Independence says “the pursuit of happiness.” A pursuit is not an end – it is a means to an end. When the pilgrims first came, they weren’t looking for fame and fortune (at least, not most of them). They were looking for opportunity: opportunity for freedom. The same is true for the immigrants that came in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries as well. They were looking for opportunities to become better.

    We still have opportunity today. Many may strive for equal shares for everyone. That is not the American Dream! The goal is not to make everyone the same! We’re made to be unique – different. America was founded on the opportunity to be different and be successful because of it. It’s not the common or average that get promoted – it’s the exceptional. You don’t brag about the so-so burger you got at the average restaurant – you brag on the excellent one you got at the great restaurant.

    Opportunity. Sounds like a good theme for 2013.

  • http://jonahenry.com/ Jon Henry

    I believe there is a gap between the two sides of “America is Great” and “America Sucks,” and both sides do a very poor job of communicating with each other. The “Great” crowd could change lives of the “Sucks” crowd, while the “Sucks” crowd could provide valuable insights to the “Great” side to make things even greater. Yet, they don’t deal with each other.

    Consider the election cycle here: both sides used the millions of unemployed as a talking point. Both sides had solutions for the unemployed. But neither side actually talked to the unemployed. So who was right?

    Here’s the problem with the American dream. It is great (I love the opportunity). But I can’t force people to live it. And my mentality that life is great is often at odds with other’s mentality that life is miserable. Me and lazy people, we don’t get along. So it is very hard for me to “fix” the broken side of the American dream, and it is very hard for my actions to inspire the broken side to change when I come off as condescending and arrogant.

    But the gap needs to be fixed.

    So instead of saying “my life is awesome because I work hard,” perhaps a more effective approach would be to look at a lazy person and those on the broken side of the American dream and say: “you are smart, you are talented, and we need you to make a difference” with truth and sincerity. Because really, we do need them.

    Like, right now.

    • http://www.joshuarivers.net/ Joshua Rivers

      “the broken side” – never thought of it like that.

      • http://jonahenry.com/ Jon Henry

        I think I should clarify: the people on that side of the American Dream aren’t broken. Their understanding of the dream is, and the explanation of the dream for the “Great” side isn’t much better.

  • http://www.mattmcwilliams.com/ Matt McWilliams

    Last time I checked we still have an “immigration problem.” So we’re one of maybe three countries that have that.

    Hmmm we spent approx. $60 Billion on Black Friday. So economy seems fine to me. Oh and a record Cyber Monday.

    I rarely go a day without seeing a “Help Wanted” sign.or getting an email telling me someone is hiring a $100k position.

    We’re still the only country with poor fat people, almost 100% of the population wearing shoes, unemployed people with cars and TVs, and poor people with cable, internet, and cell phones.

    Yeah, I’d say the American Dream is still rocking. And anyone who wants to disagree can go live in a tent in downtown San Francisco, use their $400 iPhone to Tweet their friends to come join them, and get sprayed with pepper spray…

    That was fun.

    • http://bretwortman.com/ Bret Wortman

      Someone needs a valium! ;-)

      • http://www.lilykreitinger.com/ Lily Kreitinger

        And to check his blood pressure. Hot topic today!

        • http://www.mattmcwilliams.com/ Matt McWilliams

          Haha! For other reasons though, namely peanut butter fudge and chicken wings.

      • http://www.mattmcwilliams.com/ Matt McWilliams

        Agreed.

        Oh…you mean me?

    • http://www.janabotkin.net/ Jana Botkin

      Here is a big AMEN to that! 8-) “Poor fat people” and everything else on that line was very very true. Thanks for stating it, Matt.

  • http://www.lilykreitinger.com/ Lily Kreitinger

    Love this post Chris! I can personally speak to the power of the American Dream. Ten years ago I met this wonderful guy who is now my beloved husband. I was living in Mexico City with no plans on going anywhere. After we fell in love and decided to get married, my life took a 180 degree turn. It’s a very long story, but I can say that I have been blessed beyond measure in this country. I came here with nothing but a couple of suitcases and a four-year degree from a small teaching college. Through hard work, passion and a commitment to excellence, I have been blessed with a wonderful family, a beautiful home and a great career.

    I don’t mean to brag, but I am making more money individually than the average American family. I have been unemployed for a total of 13 months since I came to the United States and I have lived in four different states. No one has handed me anything as an immigrant; I have been given the privilege to live and work in this country and I treasure it as such.

    Luck has very little to do with it. The American Dream is whatever you make it to be.