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Poll: American Dream Dead

by snork ( 67 Comments › )
Filed under Polls at March 16th, 2010 - 5:00 am

This is an indicator of the foul mood of the American public. In a poll performed by Xavier University, more people surveyed were pessimistic about the next generation achieving “the American dream” than optimistic. The details are illuminating:

The data shows that “people are losing faith” in the idea that they can achieve whatever they set their mind to, said a release put out by Xavier’s Institute for Politics and the American Dream.

But outlooks were most grim among white respondents – only 29 percent of whites surveyed said the American Dream was in good condition, compared with 48 percent who said it is in bad condition.

Among black Americans, 39 percent were optimistic about achieving the American Dream, with 35 percent pessimistic. Latinos were optimistic by a 37 percent to 36 percent margin, and non-white’s were positive by 36 percent to 35 percent.

So if you’re unwhite, you’re as likely to be optimistic as not. But if you’re white, life is a bitch, and then you die. This has the makings of some serious shit.

Despite their pessimism, 67 percent of those surveyed said they are still confident they can achieve the American Dream in their lifetime, compared to 32 percent who said they are not confident.

Only 23 percent said it will be easier for the next generation to achieve the American Dream, while 68 percent said it will harder.

There’s a peculiar psychology that causes people to be more optimistic about themselves than other people. But there seems to be a broad consensus  that things are going to be harder for the next generation.

Next stop: the “crisis of confidence” speech.