Friday, November 04, 2005

And Survey Says ...

A new Washington Post-ABC News poll shows a dismal rating for Dumbya, with a full 60 percent disapproving of his performance in office.

The Post's Richard Morin and Dan Balz report:

"... The survey underscores how several pillars of Bush's presidency have begun to crumble under the combined weight of events and White House mistakes. Bush's approval ratings have been in decline for months, but on issues of personal trust, honesty and values, Bush has suffered some of his most notable declines. Moreover, Bush has always retained majority support on his handling of the U.S. campaign against terrorism -- until now, when 51 percent have registered disapproval."

Frankly, I don't find the high disapproval ratings nearly as interesting as wanting to learn more about the 39 percent who don't see anything to worry about in the White House.

I'm reminded of Tina Fey on last week's "Saturday Night Live" Weekend Update":

"A new poll shows that 66 percent of Americans think President Bush is doing a poor job on the War in Iraq. And the remaining 34 percent think Adam and Eve rode dinosaurs to church."


At 9:54 PM, Anonymous Red Dirt said...

As a Bush supporter, it gets my back up a little ... no, let's be honest ... it raises my hackles when someone repeatedly and flippantly frames my worldview with a simplistic barrage of liberally-tinged "parenthetical America" humor (i.e. Jon Stewart).

If one wanted to be mean-spirited, one might suggest that a flippant framing of the 39 percent of Americans who don't disapprove of the President says more about flippant framer than it does about that chunk of the populace.

But I won't do that.

Instead I'll suggest that while Chase may be reminded of some piece of shiny pop culture ephemera like Tina Fey (another denizen of parenthetical America), I'm instead reminded that Harry Truman left office with a lower approval rating than Bush has now (25 percent in 1952).

Would Chase also be curious about the 25 percent who approved of Truman back then? I wonder, because it turns out that 25 percent was more on the mark in their judgement of the man than the other three-quarters of the nation at the time. Not too long ago, a bestselling tome on Truman extolled his virtues.

I trust that Chase would not characterize this 25 percent of Americans in 1952 as troglodytes who believed in magic spells?

I'm not sure there's any way of knowing for sure, but I'd submit that if Gallup had been around to take polls during the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln's approval rating would have been even more abysmal.

The president's numbers may yet go lower. I suppose that by that time, anyone who still supports the president will be labelled a "Kool-Aid drinker" -- the favorite derogation of wags on both the right and left for those who maintain philosophically-consistent views with which the wags themselves disagree.

But Chase also seems to be forgetting that at the end of 2003, Bush's approval rating was 63 percent -- the highest of any president since Lyndon Johnson.

Perhaps Chase and others could consider -- just consider -- that maybe Bush would rather let history's verdict be passed on him, instead of bouncing around like a Richard Simmons "Sweatin' to the oldies" devotee working out to the tune of popular opinion of the moment.

And maybe (or maybe not) history will judge him well. Who can say?

But if -- in spite of the dump-truck full of "Chimpy McHitler" and bitter, spinster MoDo nonsense shat upon America over the past 5 years -- the history books pass a mostly-favorable verdict on Bush, as they have on Reagan, Truman and other presidents, wouldn't that just deeply suck for his opponents?

On the other hand, history could be very unkind to Bush -- in which case folks like me will be routinely labelled as raving lunatics.

Very likely, if that's the way it turns out, we'll get to see simplistic films portraying the era 50 years hence. I'll make a bold prediction: All the Bush supporters will be cardboard cutouts who sweat and frown a lot while scratching their balls, shaking their fists and hurling ethnic slurs (after all, that's pretty much the way we're portrayed now, isn't it?).

All of the Bush opponents will be demigods, denuded and rosy-cheeked saints who like to wear turtlenecks and read the New York Times.

Hmmm. Choices, choices, and not a shade of gray anywhere to be found.

Though that shade of relativistic gray would be so comforting and warm, I think I'll cast my lot with the guy who is a deeply flawed but moral human being, doesn't deliver speeches very well and has evoked much hatred from around the world.

It would be easy to jump over the side right now, lose heart and all that ... and I suppose others might.

Not me, though. I'm among that 39 percent that Chase evidently thinks actually believes dinosaurs used to be domesticated pets.

So now, I guess ... we'll just wait and see.


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