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Bush, get home ownership right

Perspective: Not the work of the invisible hand

In his book "American Dream," author Jim Cullen writes how well we are doing on the great American ideal, the American Dream. He resolves that it has morphed over time, it means different things to different people, and that it remains elusive for many. But according to Cullen, one part of the dream works: home ownership. As the author points out, two-thirds of the population owning a home is an accomplishment that our forefathers would never have fathomed. One explanation is that home ownership fits so well with our ethos of individuality, what better expression of self than our homes. Owning them gives us the freedom to define ourselves distinctly from our neighbors. Landlords have rules, homeowners make their own. Now, what about President George Bush's Ownership Society, his idea that owning homes, businesses and our social security accounts represents the next level of economic and political freedom? He frames it as an anti-big government, pro-small business, pro-homeowner and ...