Issues & Insights

The Exhausted Majority: A New American Phenomenon

A year-long study by the organization called More in Common, concluded that as many as three quarters of Americans are exhausted from the tribe-like actions of our political leaders, and national press. They are exhausted from learning the ever-changing landscape of political correctness.

More in Common termed this large group of our population as the “Exhausted Majority.” 

This group is tired of the tribalism shown by our politicians. Politicians who must go along to get along. Forced to listen to the fringe and nervous leadership, they succumb to the pressure by voting along party lines. Creating a scenario where our representatives no longer work for the people as patriots, but as slaves to a few. 

Bombast has become the key to riches. We see this in the wide and diverse group of Democrats running for President in 2020. Are they really running patriotically or to garner fame, even if it is notorious? Fame that leads to mega book deals and lucrative speaking engagements. 

As an author, I am well aware of the value of notoriety. When I first started writing, a senior publishing executive told me, “In this day and age, being a quality writer isn’t enough to get your books sold. You have to be famous or bombastic if you want to be an author.” As many of my fellow authors do, I chose the path of producing the best literature I can, as opposed to bombast. My critically well received book, Jesus & Co., which has 5 stars on Amazon, would sell better if I had used bombast. But like most authors, I choose to inform versus fame. 

The same is true with speaker engagements. It seems our political leaders have heard the same thing. Joe Biden, for instance has made $15 million in the two years since he left the White House.  

Bombast sells and the national network knows this. CNN and Fox will interpret any Trump action very differently. As well as, ensure that Trump news is first on the list. Left behind is the real facts and forcing this group, called the Exhausted Majority to tune both out. 

While Fox and CNN claim large audiences, they represent only 2% of Americans. But that 2% is a large voice, even though it doesn’t reflect the real values of the majority. People want to hear news that isn’t biased and just the facts.  

The long bastion of news accuracy, The New York Times claims it prints, “All The News That Is Fit to Print.” However, this is no longer true. It too has succumbed to printing only what it thinks its readers what to hear. 

The number media companies that control our news is very small. In 1983, 90% of US media was controlled by fifty companies. Today, 90% of the national media is far more concentrated at only 6, according to Business Insider. Leaving those who produce the news few options other than pleasing the views of their owners. 

In my book, Your Faith Has Made You Well, a highly emphasized point is the value of the truth in our faith lives. Jesus himself declared, “I am the light of the world and the truth shall set you free.” As Christians the truth is an important part of our religion. It is also an important part of any nations discourse, especially in America.

It would be a brave choice to produce unbiased journalism, the risk is to lose the few zealots that are actually watching.  

Our religious speak, as well is governed by political correctness. It is no longer polite to say Merry Christmas in some quarters. And certainly many large corporations refrain from Christian association for fear of the backlash. Being open about being Christian risks offending. Despite the fact that 70% of Americans are professed Christians. 

However, companies like Chick-Fil-A, Tysons Foods and Forever 21 are open about their belief and produce superior operating results. They are not afraid of publicly stating they are Christian and their results prove them right. People trust Christians, regardless of the discourse we hear from a few. But fear of reprisal from the keepers of political correctness keep most away from declaring their Christian values. 

The Exhausted Majority are just that, exhausted. They are tired of talking heads claiming what Americans want, but ignore the voices of reason. They are tired of those who look for any weakness in a person to defame, while ignoring the good. This group wants to be heard, but won’t speak up for fear of reprisal. They calmly retreat to the security of friends to express their points of view. 

Our social media funnels information to people through sophisticated algorithms to ensure we hear what we like to hear, and not what is needed to be heard. Further collapsing a national dialogue of all the facts.

Many that I talk to about the Exhausted Majority, immediately identify. They will tell me they also, have many friends who feel the same. They don’t want to be told what to say or have to watch obviously biased news. They have tuned out the voices of bias and turned to friends for news.

While rancor and discord have always been part of the American landscape, the size of the Exhausted Majority is unusually large. Created by facts that are only half the story and propelled by a small group from the fringe. And an even smaller group in the media.

Americans want the truth and want fairness. This has always been our way, it is what makes our country remarkably unique.   

Bruce L Hartman was CFO of several large companies including Footlocker, Cushman and Wakefield, and The Yankee Candle Co. He left the corporate world to engage in a ministry of “Connecting The Lessons of the Gospels to the Modern Workplace.”  He is the author of Jesus & Co.  and Your Faith Has Made You Well. Visit  

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