Relatedly, here's a bit of Barbara Jordan at the 1992 Democratic National Convention--she thought the American Dream was "gasping for breath," but not dead:
There appears to be a general apprehension about the future which undermines our confidence in ourselves and each other. The American idea that tomorrow will be better than today has become de-stabilized by a stubborn, sluggish economy. Jobs lost have become permanent unemployment rather than cyclical employment. Public policy makers are held in low regard. Mistrust abounds.