Americans are angry, say the cable TV pundits and armchair political observers. They are angry at a dysfunctional Washington, D.C. Angry at the out-of-touch political class. Angry at an out-of-control bureaucracy. The only problem with this argument is that, well, Americans aren’t actually any angrier at government today than they were a year ago, or even four years ago. In fact, according to data from the Pew Research Center, the percent of Americans who say they are "angry at the federal government" has remained rather consistent over the last six years, ranging from a high of 32 percent in October 2013, to a low of 13 percent in March 2011. Today, 22 percent of Americans say they are "angry." Even when asked their feelings about the broader category of "politics" just 21 percent say they are angry. So, why the obsession with anger? Well, like just about everything else we talk about this year, it has an association with Donald J. Trump. Among Trump supporters, Pew found in March, 50 percent said they were angry with the federal government. Forty
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