Mortgaging the American Dream: What Were We Thinking? (Hardcover)
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The COVID-19 crisis has revealed how quickly existing conditions can crumble under stress. A perfect storm of a different kind is approaching, and we don't see it coming. Feeling its early tremors, we are borrowing heavily on the future to sustain an unsustainable paradigm, and mortgaging, in effect, the American Dream for future generations while jeopardizing our own.
In Mortgaging the American Dream, award-winning author R. Michael Conley describes the development of the perfect storm, its damaging claim on the resources that have made the American Dream possible, and how, over decades of intergenerational malpractice, it has morphed into the existential threat it poses today. Climate change, ecological destruction, crushing debt, and geopolitical gamesmanship are a few toxic byproducts of this play now, pay later paradigm. By addressing exponential threats with linear thinking and complex, systemic threats with quick fixes, we have exacerbated the challenges.
Conley concludes with a chilling account of what it will be like to live through the perfect storm and then provides a plan showing how the crisis can be used as a catalyst for mitigating the storm's sharper edges and getting positioned for a sustainable future. A multidisciplinary textbook with a personality, personal vignettes describe how the American Dream played out for Conley and several others who were there at the infancy of the perfect storm.