What Is Your American Dream? Check Out “The Chisel”

Transpartisan Note #84

by A. Lawrence Chickering and James S. Turner

Our country’s partisan divide impacts the way we do business, whether we work in commercial, nonprofit, academic, or government programs. The following short article, written with fellow public policy analyst A. Lawrence Chickering, explores one of the many facets of this impact when examined from the “Transpartisan” perspective.

What’s Your American Dream? TheChisel’s new national survey demonstrates something almost unimaginable in 2018: Left, Right, and Center agree on their #1 goal for 53% of the 34 issues surveyed. Join TheChisel for a bipartisan evening celebrating Americans’ shared values in the Chisel’s new book What’s Your American Dream at:

National Press Club
First Amendment Lounge
529–14th Street, N.W.,
Washington, DC
Tuesday, February 27, 2018
6:30–8:30pm

According to its founder, Deborah Devedjian, ‘TheChisel is an online tool to empower American voters by informing them about major issues and enabling them to engage with experts in developing bipartisan solutions. Our audience is everyone — all Americans. We’re all in this together, from the CEO of a Fortune 500 company or to a homemaker with young children. Each proposal is accessible to everyone.’

Our colleague Mark Gerzon says ‘TheChisel.com is not a mere feel-good exercise in building “consensus-driven solutions” but works with participating organizations to send proposals to Congress.’ We think this event, the book it celebrates, and the TheChisel offer an important glimpse into an often overlooked reality about American life — Americans share more values than the daily news suggests.

TheChisel invites everyone, saying:

Our nation is experiencing enormous change and uncertainty. Our leaders need to hear from each of us to make our lives more prosperous, equitable, and secure.
Step beyond political slogans and platforms. Share what matters to you, your loved ones, and communities.
This survey is unlike any other:
It is supported by a growing nonpartisan coalition of 29 universities, media outlets, and organizations spanning the political spectrum (see below here).
It’s simple, quick, and interactive. Seven themes frame our national discussion (see left panel here). You rank your goals with game-like tools. You can even add your own goals, comment on issues, and respond to others’ comments!
We’ll present the shared vision to the media, the President and his Cabinet, Members of Congress, Supreme Court, and state governors.
So, join us in answering ‘What’s Your American Dream?’ And be part of shaping a shared vision for all Americans.

Check out TheChisel. We are not alone. Americans together share important goals, values, and dreams.


This is Note #84 in a series of transpartisan explorations of current issues, written, in part, to promote the Transpartisan Review , a digital journal of politics, society, and culture. Issue #2 now available to download for free. Issue #3 coming in March 2018.