Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Poll: Americans are Broke and Angry

A new survey conducted by NBC, Esquire and Survey Monkey shows nearly half (49%) of all Americans in an online poll of 3,257 adults say they feel angrier today than they did a year ago — while 42% say they're just as angry (and only 8% say they're less angry).

According to the survey:

  • The least angry household-income brackets: the very rich ($150,000-plus) and the very poor ($15,000 and less).
  • The most angry: the middle of the middle-class ($50,000 to $74,999).

* My notes: According to Social Security wage data, 2.9% of all wage earners make $150,000-plus — and 31.7% of all wage earners make $15,000 and less — and 9.7% of wage earners make between $50,000 to $75,000 a year. So while this may be a true "middle-class wage" (as the survey defines), most U.S. workers don't come close to earning this. Don't confuse what can be described as "middle-class" to what the actual middle-of-the-middle is for all wage earners, which is $28,000 a year — which is known as the "median wage" (50% earn more and 50% earn less). In contrast, Hillary Clinton believes $250,000 a year is "middle-class", when that is actually in the top 1% of all wage earners.

Directly below are the approximate quintiles for the 155 million wage earners we have in the U.S. work force, and what they earn according to Social Security wage data:

  • 37,025,230 wage earners make between $5,000 and $10,000 a year (the very bottom quintile).
  • 23,796,712 wage earners make between $10,000 and $20,000 a year.
  • 30,337,461 wage earners make between $20,000 and $35,000 a year (the middle quintile).
  • 32,465,974 wage earners make between $35,000 and $60,000 a year.
  • 32,146,964 wage earners make $60,000 or more a year (the very top quintile).

* Note: The actual quintiles above would be 31,154,468 workers per each quintile (being 20% each), where the exact middle is $28,031.02 a year (half earn less and half earn more).

The new survey also shows:

  • 18% don't make enough to pay all their bills (About the entire the bottom quintile).
  • 46% make just enough to pay bills (Almost all those earning the "median wage" of $28,000 a year and everybody else under them).
  • 35% make enough to save and buy some extras (Which would be the top 5th quintile making over $60,000 a year and half of the top 4th quintile making between $35,000 and $60,000 a year)


  • Everybody making $47,000 or less a year can't save or buy extras — but yet the survey claims: "There's little correlation between anger and how one's faring financially." Total B.S.
  • 91% of all Americans are angrier (or just as angry) today as they were a year ago.

1 comment:

  1. Wall Street Journal (January 4, 2016) Voters Dour Mood Is Clear

    Public-opinion experts see a kind of darkness out there...

    Republican pollster Bill McInturff and Democrat Fred Yang conducted a Wall Street Journal/NBC News survey, and says: "The country is unable to shake the perpetual feeling of the blues—anxious and upset and angry that our politics cannot seem to fix these problems."

    Republican pollster Kellyanne Conway describes the nation’s mood this way: "Sour and dour. Nervous, on edge, a feeling of vulnerability and a lack of control." She frames the two parties’ choices this way: Will Mrs. Clinton run promising the third term of President Barack Obama, or the third term of her husband, Bill Clinton? Is it possible that “the anti-Washington, anti-political-class antipathy has created a path so wide and so deep that only Trump can fill it?”

    Democratic pollster Fred Yang sounds similar tones: "Anxious, dissatisfied, impatient and basically any other word that connotes uncertainty."

    Democrat Celinda Lake summarizes American's views succinctly: "They think the future is weak for themselves and the next generation, and they despair of politicians especially in Washington getting anything done.”

    And where will all that anxiety lead by the time voters actually start casting ballots? So far, of course, the national mood has helped fuel the rise of the antiestablishment outsiders Donald Trump and Sen. Bernie Sanders.