Only a mere 21.7 percent of the Turkish population is satisfied with their living standards, according to recent survey by MetroPOLL, which also highlighted a correlation between satisfaction and political choices.
Responds to the survey’s key question, “Are you satisfied with your life standard?”, vastly varied among voters of different political parties, with some 41 percent those who voted for the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) in the 2018 general elections responding positive.
Supporters of the AKP’s election ally, the Nationalist Action Party (MHP), followed with 23.6 percent.
However, followers of the opposition parties remain predominantly dissatisfied, the survey showed.
Some 77.6 percent of the voters of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) are dissatisfied with their living standards. Main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) voters rank as second with 69 percent. Third comes İYİ Party with 53.5 percent.
Those who are neither satisfied nor dissatisfied represent the majority among MHP voters with 53 percent. “Neither nor” response constitutes the second biggest group among AKP voters with 36 percent.
Men express dissatisfaction easier
Gender does not seem to be a determining factor in life standard satisfaction in Turkey, according to the survey conducted in February. Some 43.4 percent of men say they are “dissatisfied,” as the rate stands at 41 percent for women. Some 19 percent of women are satisfied with their lives as 24.4 percent of men also respond affirmative.
“We may speculate that expressing dissatisfaction with living standards among women is lower due cultural bias. In other words, men may have higher freedom of expression in voicing dissatisfaction,” MetroPOLL says.
Citizens aged 55 and older is the most dissatisfied group among all age categories. Among the 18-34 age group of millennials, dissatisfaction level is around 39 percent, way below the 45 percent among those 55 and older.
“The younger segment of the population may be more optimistic due to their youthful zest,” MetroPOLL says.
Education level is also not a determining element. Graduates of middle schools and lower and those holding a university degree and above are equally “dissatisfied.” Still, the graduates of high schools are the most dissatisfied with 44 percent.
Dissatisfaction with life standard decreases with the increase in income. Some 57 percent of those earning monthly 1,000 Turkish Liras and less (around $160) are dissatisfied with their life standards. The rate falls to 28.4 percent for those who earn monthly 4000 liras ($640) and more.
60 percent not hopeful
Arguably the most disappointing figure out of the survey is about expectations. Around 60 percent of the population thinks that their life standards are deprecating. Those who think that their life standards have improved are only 18 percent of the public.
The AKP voters dominate the optimistic group 40.2 percent of them saying that their life standards have improved. They are followed up by the MHP voters with 10.6 percent. However, those thinking that their life standards have depreciated constitute the overwhelming majority. Some 91.7 percent of the HDP voters have negative views about their life standard’s fluctuation. The CHP voters follow with 79.3 percent and İYİ Party voters with 75.7 percent.
Surprisingly, some 64 percent the voters of MHP, the ruling AKP’s election ally expressing negative sentiments regarding the change in their life standard.
“Gender and age do not seem to be variables that have a significant effect over the perceptions on the future living standards,” says Özer Sencar, MetroPOLL CEO, in a statement released with the survey.
“For example, women thinking that their living standards are getting worse are almost on par witn men: 58 percent of women and 60 percent of men share the opinion ‘my living standards are getting worse.’ Still, women who are able to say ‘my living standards are getting better’ are 5 points less than men; featuring at 15.6 percent.”