QUICK! Does capitalism work you? Yes or no?
If you’re in Times Square this week, you can register your vote at an interactive art project. If you are not in New York City—please register your vote here by leaving a comment!
Artist and activist Steve Lambert’s installation “Capitalism: It works for me!” began yesterday in New York City’s Times Square, and runs through October 9. The lighted display invites passersby to press a green or red button, registering their vote “true” or “false.” Updated totals are shown on the display. Voters can also video record their comments and thoughts.
If you were in Times Square, how would you vote? Would you say that capitalism is working for you? Or not working for you?
Most Americans say that our system of capitalism is working, according to a 2013 Public Religion Research Institute survey. But only 9% say it is working very well. About 45% say American capitalism is working somewhat. Twenty-six percent say our economic system is not working too well, with an additional 16% saying that it is not working at all well.
Not surprisingly, Americans who make a lot of money are much more likely to say the system is working, compared to those who make little money. Even so, almost half (47%) of Americans with annual household incomes of $30,000 or less says that our economic system is working well.
Why is capitalism working? Among those who believe it is, the main reason they give is that it encourages personal responsibility (33%). Others say it is working because it provides equal opportunities for all (29%), or that it promotes individual freedom (24%).
Why is capitalism NOT working? Among those who say it isn’t working, the main reason is that it encourages greed (34%). Others say that it does not provide opportunities for all (28%), or that it creates poverty (14%). Only 4% say it is not working well because of too much government regulation.
Does capitalism work for you?
If yes, why?
If no, why not?