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Dispatches: The Changing American Dream in RB

'Dispatches' will be built upon vignettes and snapshots we unearth across our nearly 900 Patch sites around the country.

One in a series of reports by Patch on the American Dream in the 21st Century.

We're excited to inaugurate a new series for our Patch Readers: "Dispatches: The Changing American Dream."

Every day, the national media is full of stories about how American families, businesses and neighbors are adjusting to these trying times. There are so many changes happening so fast that it's dizzying; national debates about unemployment, foreclosures, debt, religion, government and private enterprise all touch on fundamental ways in which we see ourselves and our communities. At Patch, we want to explore that conversation on a daily basis so we can better understand how our neighbors are adjusting to the challenges and opportunities that surround us.


We don't think there's one American Dream but a multitude of American Dreams which a multitude of people are working toward. Looking out across nearly 900 Patch sites, we see businesses holding their breath deciding whether to expand; college graduates returning home because they can't find jobs; and senior citizens bringing boarders into their homes to help pay their bills. We also see bold new volunteer efforts, inspiring stories of local businesses that succeed because they innovated, and locals who've taken these trying times as a signal to engage more, not less, in their government.

At the purely local level, we want to know where we, as Rancho Bernardo neighbors, fit along these fault lines.

Nationally, there's a debate about the education system, which is at the center of our dreams of a better life for our children. Locally, we know Rancho Bernardo’s students are . But local education leaders are worried about continued funding cuts from the state.

Nationally, there's worry about declining opportunities in certain industries. Locally, we've seen though San Diego's unemployment rate has been lower than the state's overall.

"Dispatches" will be built upon the compelling vignettes and snapshots we unearth across all of our Patch sites.

And, of course, we want your help: Tell us what issues and what stories in Rancho Bernardo and nearby communities go to the heart of your American Dream.

 Find us on Facebook and Twitter @RBPatch.

Nancy Canfield August 15, 2011 at 01:41 PM
As a Realtor, I hear people's personal stories every day. There are many people struggling to stay in their homes, and to understand why the banks won't just extend the life of their loan, and thereby reduce the payments, so that they can keep the roof over their heads. It does not make sense that banks have this warehouse of houses, so much so that in many cases they are bulldozing them under because they can't sell, and yet, they decline loan modification requests almost without exception. You hear about people refusing to get out of their homes, many have no where to go, and no money to start over. I don't share the notion that everyone has a right to a house, anymore than everyone has a right to a college degree, or a car. Certainly I believe we should ensure everyone has food, shelter, medical care, the opportunity for a job. But beyond that, in America, it has always been possible for us to provide for the rest. Every time I see the beggars on the median I am reminded of the Chinese proverb, "Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, and you feed him for a lifetime." Think of the millions of immigrants who have come here and made wonderful lives for themselves and their families. Like the Little Engine that Could, "I think I can, I think I can..." and they do, we do. That is the American Dream, the Opportunity to "Be All That You Can Be!"

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