"Losers" implies a certain game theory. A fairly new one.
Once upon a time, common people used to think you should know your place. And stay there. "Ambition" used to be a dirty word. Basically, God placed you on your rung on life's ladder and you should accept it. The original idea of a villain was someone common and low-bred trying to rise above his station. A villein trying to act like a Lord.
Upper mobility is a core American idea. I.e.: God wants you to climb that ladder. In terms of game theory, America's common people didn't always consider themselves losers because (A) Horatio Alger-types thought the game was fair and they were still climbing. (B)They were stuck -- because the game was rigged. If the other guy is cheating, you're not a loser.
So, at the time of the original Progressive movement -- our old pal William Jennings with his "cross of gold" and all that -- the core perception was that east coast monied interests were allied against farmers, rural America and the Midwest and had rigged the economic game in their favor.