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NBC poll: U.S. down on the past decade

From NBC's Mark Murray
Time magazine called the past decade (2000-2009) the "Decade from Hell."

Respondents in the new NBC/Wall Street Journal poll don't go that far, but it's clear that many didn't think it was a good decade.

According to the poll, a combined 58% said the decade was either "awful" or "not so good," 29% said it was fair, and just 12% said it was either "good" or "great."

By comparison, in 1989, 39% said it was a fair decade, 38% said it was good, and 21% said it wasn't good (awful and great weren't offered as possible responses in that '89 survey).

Asked what they thought had the greatest negative impact on America this past decade, 38% cited the 9/11 terrorist attacks, 23% picked the mortgage and housing crisis, 20% said the Iraq war, 11% chose the stock market crash, and 6% said Hurricane Katrina.

What's more, the poll shows that 48% believe the U.S. gained ground over the past decade on science and technology, and 40% say it gained ground on race relations.

But 37% said it lost ground on the environment, 46% said it lost ground on health and well being, 50% said it lost ground on peace and national security, 54% said lost ground on the nation's sense of unity, 55% said it lost ground in treating others with respect, 66% said it lost ground on moral values, and a whopping 74% said it lost ground on economic prosperity.

Not a decade from hell -- but close.