Poll Hub

America's Bummer Summer

Episode Summary

The Summer 2022 edition of our America Now: National Outlook Index hit its lowest point ever. It was driven down by especially bad vibes about the economy and American society in general. But not everyone is bummed. Then, we geek out on some research that purports to show people don't tell pollsters what they really think on hot button issues. In reality, it's WAY more complicated. And, we end with a look at who's laughing now (or at least in 2019).

Episode Notes

The Poll's America Now Index has been reporting on the mood of the nation for several years and has never been quite like this. There's no getting around that America's mood is dreary and inflation is not the only (or maybe even main) reason. The funk is widespread as all four categories we track fell and several specific areas hit historic rock bottom. Some reasons may be obvious but looking deeper at the data yields some additional clues of where we are -- and where our mood may be headed.

Boston-based think tank Populace released a report in August that detail significant gaps between what the authors called peoples' "public" and "private" opinions on hot-button issues like COVID masking, abortion, public schooling, and racism. To determine what these "private" opinions are, Populace used a time-tested method employed by researchers for decades. But they used it in ways that may not show exactly what they say.

And, for the Fun Fact...laughter. Do you laugh out loud when you find something funny? Most of us do, but not everyone has that kind of funny bone.