Presidential Zeitgeist: A Timeline Of Public Opinion, 1998 to 2010

1998:  "Bill Clinton may not be husband of the year, but he sure knows how to be president.  His enemies are impeaching him for no good reason, and he's still getting the job done."

2000:  "The cold war is over.  The budget is in surplus.  The economy is okay.  How hard can it be to be president these days?  George W. Bush looks harmless enough, like his old man.  Let's put things on cruise control for a while.  Besides, Al Gore is such a know-it-all."

August 2001:  "Bush got his tax cuts passed, and now he seems to be on permanent vacation. How much brush can there be on that 'ranch' of his?  You know, this guy really is a lightweight.  I wonder if we can do better next time around. . ."

September 2001:  "Did you see Bush standing in the rubble with his big bullhorn?  Now there's a man who won't back down from the terrorists.  So he's not the sharpest tool in the shed.  That's why he hired guys like Donald Rumsfeld."

2002:  "There are so many people in the world who want to kill us!  Bush is keeping us safe.  He'll get bin Laden one of these days.  We just need to trust him."

2003:  "Did you see Bush on that aircraft carrier?  Now that's a president.  He kicked Saddam Hussein's tail all the way to Bagdad.  After we mop up a few more terrorists, we'll be back on Easy Street."

2004:  "This Iraq war isn't going very well, but John Kerry won't even defend himself, let alone the rest of us.  I'm holding my nose and voting for Bush again.  Politics is beginning to give me a headache, anyway.  What's on cable tonight?"

2005:  "George Bush wants to do what?  Privatize Social Security?  I don't think so.  Why doesn't he just get us out of Iraq?  Oh, that's right -- he hired 'Brownie' to manage hurricane relief.  Well, what do you expect from a guy who slept through a tsunami?"

2006:  "Only two short years till we send Bush's ass back to Texas.  In the meantime, let's see if the Democrats in Washington can make some changes.  By the way, what does their party actually stand for?  'Reply hazy,' says my Magic 8 Ball."

2008:  "I'm voting Democratic this year -- period.  After eight years of Bush, what choice do I have?  And if Barack Obama wants to 'change the tone in Washington'?  Whatever, boss.  Knock yourself out down there.  Just make sure you fix the damn economy and act presidential.  And by 'acting presidential', I don't mean putting on a flight suit like Bush did.  I mean doing your job -- like Clinton did."

2009:  "I kind of like Barack Obama, but what does the man really stand for?  He seems to think Republican ideas are just as good as Democratic ones.  Maybe he's right. . ."

2010:  "Do I want to see a Republican in the White House?  Not really.  But somebody needs to get a handle on things.  I'm keeping all my options open.  One thing, though -- no teabaggers.  They're crazy."

From my blog:



Kicking the Wall Street Habit

by Zach Carter, TMC MediaWire blogger

As Barack Obama readies himself to lead the United States through what appears to be a scathing recession, he faces a choice between feeding the political sphere's Wall Street addiction and investing in economic progress. Two key former Clinton cabinet officials could determine which course he takes.

 It was more than a little startling to hear a U.S. leader who sounded like (gasp!) an economist at the president-elect's first press conference last week, after years of Bush speeches that treated economic policy as a realm defined exclusively by tax cuts and bailouts. But without policy specifics, we still do not know which voices of the many men and women flanking Obama at the event will impact the next administration's economic platform. Mother Jonesnotes that several of the names included on the list of Obama's economic advisers represent schools of thought that brought us directly to the current crisis. Two of the alleged experts, former Clinton Treasury Secretaries Robert Rubin and Lawrence Summers, signed off on major financial deregulatory moves in the latter half of the Clinton years. The two sided often with former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan on policies that included a refusal to place government oversight on the credit derivatives market, which eventually ballooned into the $60 trillion quagmire that destroyed AIG in September (who got another $40 billion from taxpayers on Monday).  

There's more...

Obama: The Best Is Yet To Come

Change has almost always been welcome in my life. I'm the type of person who will switch which leg goes into my jeans first or switch which eye the first contact lens goes into. Just enough change to make life interesting. So when my hero Hillary didn't win the primary it wasn't long before I put my disappointment aside and moved on.

Way back at the end of the primary wars, my confidence in Barack Obama was tepid at best. "Aaa, no matter what", I told myself, "he'd be better than another four years of republicans."

Now, while McCain is desperately grasping at straws to stay alive in the race, Obama seems to be preparing himself to take on the most difficult job of a lifetime with quiet self assurance and preparation.

There's more...

McLiar--Not in Hillary's Name!

Cross-posted at Motley Moose.

Last night, John McCain tried to tie his smear campaign against Barack Obama to comments made by Hillary Clinton during the Democratic primary campaign this spring.

"I don't care about an old washed up terrorist, but as Senator (Hillary) Clinton said in her debates with you, we need to know the full extent of the relationship with you."

I'm not going to parse, here.  That is a bold-faced lie.


There's more...

The Ultimate October Surprise

Cross-posted at Motley Moose.

After a few weeks of hand-wringing by Democrats about why the race is so tight, Obama seems have broken into a clear national lead.

There's more...


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