Around six-in-ten U.S. adults say the nation’s economic system unfairly favors powerful interests, though partisans are divided. Partisan differences extend to beliefs about why people are rich or poor.
Hispanics are more likely than the general U.S. public to believe in the American dream – that hard work will pay off and that each generation is better off than the one prior.
Beyond partisan differences over economic policies, there are stark divisions on a fundamental question: What makes someone rich or poor?
Optimism in an Era of Growing Inequality and Economic Difficulty Despite an extended period of economic difficulty, Pew Research Center pollsters Andrew Kohut and Michael Dimock show that Americans’ core values and beliefs about economic opportunity, and the nation’s economic outlook, remain largely optimistic and unchanged. There is also little evidence that economic class is […]
Recent deliberations in Washington have triggered a national debate about key elements of the social safety net. Why the U.S. invests relatively less in its social safety net than many other countries reflect Americans’ conflicted, partisan and often contradictory views on fairness, inequality, the role and responsibility of government and individuals in society and the efficacy of government action.
Add faith in the work ethic and in capitalism to the lengthening list of casualties from the Great Recession. Four years after the Lehman Brothers’ fiasco and the ensuing global economic downturn, the idea that effort in a competitive economy can lead to success is seriously questioned in a number of major economies, including Japan, Russia and Greece, especially among those who have suffered the most.
The economic mood is exceedingly glum around the world. Across the 21 countries surveyed, a median of just 27 percent think their national economy is doing well. Only in China, Germany, Brazil and Turkey do most people report that current national economic conditions are good.
Income inequality has become a major issue in the presidential campaign. A recent Pew Research Center poll, for example, attracted wide attention when it found that as many as 66% of Americans believe there are “very strong” or “strong” conflicts between the rich and the poor, an increase of 19 percentage points since 2009. But […]
Overview Two decades after the Soviet Union’s collapse, Russians, Ukrainians, and Lithuanians are unhappy with the direction of their countries and disillusioned with the state of their politics. Enthusiasm for democracy and capitalism has waned considerably over the past 20 years, and most believe the changes that have taken place since 1991 have had a […]
American values differ from those of Western Europeans in many important ways. Most notably, Americans are more individualistic and are less supportive of a strong safety net than are the publics of Spain, Britain, France and Germany. However, Americans are coming closer to Europeans in not seeing their culture as superior to that of other nations.