Deer Hunting with Jesus
This is a follow up to my “We are the 1%” entry.
Over the holidays I was talking to some family friends about my research, specifically how I had been disturbed by the ``We are the 1% tumblr” because so many of the people posting their stories were NOT actually in the 1% (according to the WSJ blog you need to make over $506,000 in (household) income to be in the 1%).  
Why do so many working-class Americans believe (and vote) as if they were wealthier than they are?
A family friend recommend Deer Hunting With Jesus (by Joe Bageant who sadly died in 2011) as a possible answer to my question.  This doesn’t really answer the question of why moderately wealthy Americans think they are in the 1%, but it does describe why the working poor might believe they are doing better than they are. The book recounts stories of the working poor in Virginia. While parts of the book felt a little personal-politics-rant-y to me, I found the description of the social system in small-town, working-class, America to be enlightening. You can buy the book here.
Tuesday, February 7, 2012