The Daily Sandwich

"We have to learn the lesson that intellectual honesty is fundamental for everything we cherish." -Sir Karl Popper

Location: Boston, Massachusetts, United States


Monday, February 27, 2006

Nookyalur President goes radioactive

It's been funny to hear pundits from both sides predict that the port sale wouldn't be much of an issue with mainstream America.* It might be enough to rub off on GOP imcumbents through election day, but my own opinion that it would have a tangible effect on the White House seems to have been vindicated.

The latest CBS News poll finds President Bush's approval rating has fallen to an all-time low of 34 percent, while pessimism about the Iraq war has risen to a new high.

Americans are also overwhelmingly opposed to the Bush-backed deal giving a Dubai-owned company operational control over six major U.S. ports. Seven in 10 Americans, including 58 percent of Republicans, say they're opposed to the agreement. (. . .)

Still, the [shooting] incident appears to have made the public's already negative view of Cheney a more so. Just 18 percent said they had a favorable view of the vice president, down from 23 percent in January.

Even when some polls showed Bush's approval below 40% lately, most of the talking heads put it in the "low to mid- forties." I thought even that was pretty optimistic, given the endless stream of bad news from the economy to corruption to the war. But as time moves on and the White House is more and more frequently telling the public that things are just peachy when they obviously aren't, more of true believers are peeled away. It really is getting to the point where the only people supporting this administration are dyed-in-the-wool "my party right or wrong" kooks.

* For instance, this breathtakingly arrogant statement from ABC's "The Note," touted as the insider's go-to page for what the day's news cycle will bring:

Port security:

(If you expected The Note to report on the meaning of the flap, the delay, the brouhaha, the whole thing — you expected wrong.
Wake us when it’s over.)

The Note: fingers squarely on the pulse of mainstream America.

UPDATE (2/28): Those clever wags at The Note are now saying that this bit was an "experiment in which we see how easy it is to get liberal bloggers and e-mailers mad at us, and the beginning of the experiment in which we see how mad they get when we joke about their getting mad." Which reminds me a lot of what an elementary school student would consider brilliant playground strategy. "Ha! I convinced you I was an idiot! You fell into my trap!" What it doesn't do is explain why these masterminds actually didn't comment on the port sales.

Here's an exclusive for the social scientists at The Note: it's really pretty easy to elicit outraged hate mail from Internet users. And it doesn't make any difference whether they're liberals, conservatives, Lindsay Lohan fans, or speedwalkers. Now can we get back to the news?