Magazine

Harris Poll: Wiser but Unbowed (extended)


How has the boom/bust economy of recent years affected Americans' perennial

optimism? A BusinessWeek/Harris Poll of 1,022 adults, conducted July

20-25, found that most Americans believe the good times will return soon.

Still, this outlook is tempered by a sense that the Brave New World of

technology may not be quite the panacea it was once thought to be. Here's

the complete poll (a shorter version was included in the print edition):

Now, for the turnaround

How optimistic or pessimistic are you that the U.S. can avoid a lengthy

downturn marked by more large-scale job layoffs, further weakness in the

stock market, and a decline in Americans' living standards?

Muddling along

On a scale from 1 to 7, where 7 means "The country's economy is extremely

strong", 4 means "The economy is neither growing nor shrinking," and 1

means "The country is in a severe recession", where do you think the

country is headed?

Acting responsibly

How much do you agree or disagree with the following statements--do you

strongly agree, somewhat agree, somewhat disagree, or strongly disagree?

Investors must be willing to bear greater financial risks to assure higher

return on investments

The federal government should take a more activist role in assuring

economic growth

People got too carried away with the promise of technology to improve

their lives

Shakier now than before...

Are you more or less confident in the economy today than you were a year

ago?

...But the future is ours

How confident are you that after the economic downturn ends, America can

return to rapid economic growth, rising incomes, and good job opportunities?

What about your kids' tomorrow?

Do you expect your children will have a better life than you have had, a

worse life, or a life about as good as yours?

A question of leadership

How would you rate the job these people or groups are doing?

On privatizing Social Security

President Bush supports partial privatization of Social Security, which he

would accomplish by letting individuals invest a portion of payroll taxes

in stocks and other investments, with the goal to raise investment returns

and assure a better retirement system. How strongly do you support or

oppose this proposal?

Which of the following statements comes closest to your views?


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