Hacker and Dreifus

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Bob Herbert and Cal Thomas Write Articles

Bob Herbert, a New York Times columnist writes on the subject of the american dream in an article titled hiding from reality. He writes of the dreary state of our country filled with ignored public school systems, dangerously underfunded local and state governments, and a failing job economy. Herbert boldly claims “Wherever you choose to look-at the economy and jobs, the public schools, the budget deficits, the nonstop war overseas- you’ll see a country in sad shape. Standards of living are declining, and american parents increasingly believe that their children are going to inherit a very bad deal” (564). This is one of the first points Herbert makes in his essay. What it appears Herbert is doing is trying to make the situation look as important as possible, that things are heading downhill. Herbert does not specifically assess blame for his claims. Cal Thomas the author of the next article capitalizes on that aspect, which he views as a weakness in Herbert’s essay.

Cal Thomas a panelist on Fox News Watch and author of several books writes an article on the same subject titled Is the American Dream Over? Cal Thomas writes a more complex article. Thomas’ main point seems to be balance between arguing some of Herbert's main points, and discussing some of the problems in our country that herbert also covered in his essays. Such as the school system and a seemingly dysfunctional government. Thomas goes on to better define the american dream in order to show it as something besides, as herbert implies in his last paragraph, dead (567). thomas suggests “The rules for achieving the american dream may no longer be taught in and supported by culture but that doesn't mean they don’t work” (570). Thomas leads his readers to infer that the american dream is as effective as it always has been, it has simply just gone out of style. Initially looking at these two articles it is easy to tell that they are full of contradictions...
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