Inequality: Is the chasm between the haves and the have-nots widening?
Despite the push by certain parties to promote the theme of the 1% vs. the 99% based on income and wealth, a recent Gallup poll shows a decline in recent years of the number of Americans, 58%, who think of Americans as divided into haves and have-nots. 41% of Americans see the country as divided. And if forced to choose, a clear majority, 58%, see themselves as haves, even with incomes as low as $30,000. Only at incomes below $30,000 do a majority of Americans, 55%, consider themselves have-nots.
Gallup notes that "The current poll was also conducted as the Occupy Wall Street movement continues to focus on the disparities between the wealthiest 1% of Americans and everyone else."
Gallup concludes by telling us that:
Americans' views of their own position as "haves" or "have nots" have been remarkably stable, even as the nation's economic problems have intensified. Still, the finding that fewer Americans now than in 2008 consider U.S. society as divided into "haves" and "have nots" suggests a decreasing -- rather than increasing – level of worry about unfair income distribution in the U.S. at this time.As populists and politicians have made inequality more of a political issue, moderates and independents in particular are turning away from the idea of a society divided in two. Thus, Americans as a whole are no more likely to see the country as divided into haves and have nots than at any time in the past two decades.
This is further evidence of what I assert is an attempt by various parties to instigate "class warfare" where it doesn't naturally exist.