You forget most things you learn in college, but some of it sticks for life and shapes how you think about it. So it is with something Father John Cantillon SJ at LeMoyne College said to me about Jesuit philosophy: "God writes straight with crooked lines."
That thought struck me as I compared our Zogby Interactive data about belief in the American Dream from polls taken just after the 2008 and 2010 elections. The percentage of people who believe we can no longer achieve either a material or spiritual American Dream has jumped by nine and now comprises one in five likely voters. Yet, despite what may become the new normal of 10% unemployment, two-thirds still believe they can achieve it. The American Dream remains resilient (and changing), but we are in a very rough patch.