Eric Schlossers Essay

I think that the old dream as Schlosser describes it is preferable than the “illusion” that Las Vegas sells, and also preferable to the new dream of globalization for a variety of reasons: the old dream seems to me grounded to human experience within the context of an immediate community that promotes hard work and discipline that bears fruit in the form of character and . Schlosser said that: the old dream lives on, the dream of freedom without limits, self reliance, and a wide-open frontier. Basically this dream aims for a brighter, progressive future where new possibilities are explored and discoveries made through hard work.

The individual is situated in a real community of people, existing as a member of society who toils and tills the land. For the most part, it can be said that this old dream has been achieved to some degree. In this day and age, we have seen tremendous technological advancements; unprecedented increase in the interconnection of different nations and societies at all levels – social, political, economical, religious, and academic. What are the new frontiers to conquer then? Virtually we now live in a global village thanks to the internet.

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One no longer needs to see other people face-to-face to transact business or to make and keep relationships with them. One only needs an internet connection and the world can be at one’s fingertips. However, integration is not complete. If globalization, the full integration of the world and all its facets, is the new dream, then perhaps its goal would be for all barriers to collapse and to be a global citizen, to have a one world community, a one world market governed by the rules of supply and demand. Of course, this comes at a price.

The global village is not as real in the sense that it is not as immediate as the community in which an individual coexists within a given environment. Even a global community is hard to imagine, given that we only feel for those that we have shared experience with, those we care about. The global village exists, true enough, but it is only a little more than just a mirage, an illusion. Is it entirely different from the illusion that Vegas provides? Las Vegas gives the illusion of wealth and success, of being able to pull off something big with a bit of luck and not with years of hard work and honest labor.

The old dream instills good work ethics, principles, and values – it builds character. In the new dream where everything is fast-paced and where the number one goal is to succeed in the ever-changing scenario and leave a trace of one’s existence when everything and everyone’s distinction becomes blurred. The new dream then is different from the old dream in that it asks for a different set of values to attain it – competition, specialization, and convenience. People want to have what they want fast and at the least cost.

Those who can provide those goods win, with no consideration on environmental and social consequences. Thus, the earth finds itself on the road to irreversible destruction, and societies all over the world are divided between the very few rich and the massive dehumanized poor. This is so different from the laid-back, hopeful dreaming of the old, when people saw their future in their hands. Everything was within their grasp – if they work hard enough for it. And in the process, gain what nothing can ever take away from them: experience and character.


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