Work: Can hard work still make you rich in America? MAGAZINE FEATURE ON A DETROIT ASSEMBLY LINE compares the work to “A Modern Dance.” The magazine told readers that the workers loved to work at “top speed.” Image in public domain from Wikimedia Commons.The jobless rate just dipped to 8.6%, according to the latest report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The unemployment rate fell for adult men and whites, but not for adult women, teenagers, blacks, or Hispanics. It’s too soon to say if this is part of a trend, but it’s a hopeful sign nonetheless.

QUESTION: Can anyone who works hard get rich? Another hopeful sign, right now, is the number of Americans who say that it’s still possible for anyone who works hard to get rich. Just over a third (35%) of Americans says this is still possible, according to a just-released survey results from Rasmussen Reports. That’s the highest percentage we’ve seen in over three years. Fifty percent of Americans don’t think it’s possible to get rich by working hard, but that’s down from previous survey. (About 14% are unsure.) More Republicans (42%) than Democrats (27%) feel that it’s possible to get rich by working hard. Not surprisingly, Americans making $40,000 or less a year are more skeptical of the hard-work-equals-riches equation than those making more than that amount.

QUESTION: Can hard work get someone out of poverty? About half (50%) of all Americans say it is, according to the survey. This figure is also up, indicating a rise in optimism. Still, only 44% believe it’s possible for anyone to find a job.

Whether or not hard work pays off, just how important is the hard-work ethic in America? You might be surprised. Tomorrow I will share with you some surprising facts about the value of hard work in America.

Do you think it’s still possible to get rich in America if you work hard?

Is hard work all it takes to get out of poverty?


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Originally published at, an online experiment in civil dialogue on American values.

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