I have a good topic for today but I am too fatigued from a long weekend of travel and wedding joy (note: after someone divorces you, going to weddings is kinda depressing) I lack the 1:00 AM strength to do it justice. Instead, let's all console ourselves with some comforting thoughts about the next four years under President Perry/Bachmann/Tancredo/Camacho.

The poll, which was conducted after Mr. Obama’s economic address to Congress last week, contains considerable warning signs for the president. The poll found a 12-point jump since late June, to 43 percent, in the number of Americans who say the economy is getting worse. And for the first time since taking office, his disapproval rating has reached 50 percent in the Times and CBS News polls.

“I don’t disapprove of Barack Obama as a person, but as a president he has disappointed me greatly,” said Ann Sheets, 69, a Democrat from Chattanooga, Tenn., speaking in a follow-up interview. Ms. Sheets added, “I’m realistic enough to know how difficult it is and I am not against compromise, but I voted for a backbone. You have to draw some lines in the sand, and I don’t think he has done that.”

The poll found a 43 percent approval rating for Mr. Obama. It is significantly higher than Jimmy Carter, who had an approval rating of 31 percent at a similar time in his presidency, according to the Times and CBS News poll, which showed Ronald Reagan with an approval of 46 percent and the elder George Bush at 70 percent.

The president’s support has fallen to its lowest levels across parts of the diverse coalition of voters who elected him, from women to suburbanites to college graduates. And a persistent effort over the past year to reclaim his appeal to independent voters has shown few signs of bearing fruit, with 59 percent of this critical electoral group voicing their disapproval.

Good idea trying to win "moderates" by being all bipartisany and compromisey.

In other news, I want to hang out with 69 year old Ann Sheets of Chattanooga, TN. She sounds pretty cool.

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  • There's only two good things I can say about Obama as the US President:
    1) He's not a Republican (although it can be argued he's a Republican from 1990)
    2) He introduced homebrewing beer to the White House.

  • We tend to hear that politicians are liars. But the president from Carter through W Bush basically ran on the agenda they later governed on. Obama ran on a progressive agenda and turned out to be an enemy of that agenda. Obama is clearly a charlatan. In addition he is inept, shallow, lacks a backbone and supporter of the rich over everybody else.

    Why wouldn't I vote for him.

  • While I am not a political scientist by any stretch, the only saving grace that Obama has is that the opposition is so over the top, batshit crazy that the moderates, even if they have to grit their teeth to do it, will have to re-elect Obama.

    I can only hope I'm right in this assumption or else Canada is ready for a new immigrant who will seek political asylum.

    God bless my neighbors to the north.

  • Not sure what Middle Seaman is talking about, actually. My strong recollection is that Obama ran as a middle-of-the-road, DLC-type compromiser. I believe, for example, that he had to be pushed into the individual mandate by Clinton and Edwards. I'm disappointed by many of Obama's actions, but not terribly surprised.

  • I've been saying for a while that Obama seems to think that the bond desk at Goldman Sachs, the board of directors of Wellpoint and Aetna, and Gen. David Petraeus would do all of his door-knocking and van-pooling and phone-banking in 2012, because he's certainly been much more interested in making them happy and attending to their interests than he has in doing the work that the people who, y'know, actually voted for him wanted him to do.

  • If Obama does lose in 2012, you all know who will be to blame, right? Progressives. The message will be that Obama was too much of a radical leftist for the American people, who prefer their liberals in the mold of Joe Lieberman and Ben Nelson.

    I can't fucking wait.

  • I'll vote for BO but man, there's a little imp on my shoulder telling me "Really, just vote Perry and bring on the fucking apocalypse. Voting for a Dem is just prolonging the inevitable American collapse."

    I mean, who doesn't want to experience Thunder Dome for realsies?

  • @FMguru:
    Yeah, there's the rub. Obama could fellate the entire Fortune 500 on camera and FOX News drones would still insist that he's a dangerous radical Marxist. If he loses to Perry, it will just PROVE that the center-right is too far left for Real Americans, whom only Hannity properly understands.

  • Obama said he'd end the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan – we're still there. He said he'd close Guantanamo – it's still open. He said he'd initiate a public healthcare option – instead he's forcing everyone to buy private HMO coverage. He said he'd renegotiate NAFTA – instead he's supported increasing globalization. He said he'd oppose extending the Bush tax cuts – he signed off on them plus lowing other taxes on the rich. Etc etc etc. Obama ran as a progressive – he wouldn't have garnered the support he did if he had ran as a DLC-moderate especially among the young.

    As for what Fox News will say when he loses – yep they'll say he was too much of a leftist radical – but who cares? We all know reality means nothing to Fox News or its viewers – they're beyond redemption. Last thing I'm going to do is spend one second worrying over what they'll think.

  • Polls make me retch. What the fuck does it mean to say I "approve" or disapprove" of Obama? Who's asking? Compared to whom? If he were a single issue, like legalized pot, the question might make sense.

    Few of us get interviewed, certainly not by pollsters, a la Ms Sheets. Otherwise political opinion collection is less nuanced than Dancing with the Stars. I give Obama a 4, OK?

    "Disappointed" sure, in spades. Where are the polls with that option?

  • Need I remind everyone that when Obama walks into a room they play "Hail to the Chief," and that people are not required to get up, salute, and exclaim "Hail Caesar!"?

    You want a more progressive Obama – or any President for that matter?
    Give him/her a more progressive House and Senate.

    This Obama guy did pretty good when Pelosi could whip the Red Dogs (I call them that 'cause there ain't nothin' blue about 'em) in the House to go along with the agenda, and Reid could get those egotistical idiot's Nelson, Byah and Lieberman aligned.

    So, go ahead, bitch about Obama, scream for someone to primary him (with whom, btw?), then sit on your asses in '12, and soon, President Ponzi Perry and his merry band of Teabagging 'morans' in Congress will "Shock Doctrine" our asses into The Dominionist Christian Corporate States of American faster than you can say "Wah happen?"

  • In November 2008 the only two possible winning choices were McCain and Obama. After Obama won, lots of his supporters demobilized, sitting around griping about his failures instead of organizing for their own agendas.

  • Oh, cund, you've straightened me out – my deepest thanks!. Yup, when your team is down by 2 touchdowns in the fourth quarter, it's always best to decide that you're going to go for a field goal before you even get the football. Because, you know, actually making a serious effort to push for something desperately needed, but risky (like going for it on fourth down) is doomed to failure when the other teams and the refs are just not helping you. Why even try? Be sensible – take the compromise.

  • You're divorced? I'm sorry to hear that.

    Also, what c u n d gulag said. (For all the pomp and circumstance the presidency gets, folks, the real power is in Congress. Anybody who sat out 2010 or voted Republican to "teach 'em a lesson" that year should be ashamed of themselves.)

  • JohnR,
    Look, I'm not against primarying him.
    But with whom?

    Who is this mythical Liberal who'll ride in and save all of us to get the nomination, and then capture the hearts of the ignorant, un-and-mis-informed, and lazy masses, which is what most "indpendnents" are, and then slay 'Ponzi 'Perry or 'Fill-in the ___________ Mitt?'
    Allen Grayson?
    Tom Hanks?

    Who's going to be the Democrat, or 3rd Party person, who's going to throw that 15 point TD pass for the Liberal/Progressive side?

    You want a more aggresive football coach?
    Make sure the team drafts more aggressive players.
    Right now, the Democratic side is full of well-paid and worthless 1st rounders, and a bunch of chickenshit backbenchers, playing not to get hurt.

  • Divorced? Bummer Ed, sorry to hear that. No matter on what terms, it's always somewhere between pretty bad to apocalyptic disaster. Keep your chin up.

  • Rick Perry and the Down Home Apocalypse Band, eh? Well, I've logged in far more hours than I'd care to admit neglecting grad student duties and instead playing the Fallout series, so bring it!

  • Yeah, I banged Ann Sheets. She's all yours, Ed.

    And Thunderdome? I don't think a single one of you would even be LET into Bartertown.

    Because, you know, the brothel is full.

  • @David

    Please reference a quote or two during the 2008 campaign from BHO saying he was going to end the war in Afghanistan.

    All the stuff I heard from him was that along w/ most Ds (since about 2003)that the Afghan war was the 'good war' (my characterization) and the Iraq war was the 'bad war' that the Cheney Bush war machine fought for all the wrong reasons.

    Please forgive and correct me if I've Right Wing spun it here.

    Here's a fabuloso idea I read recently,….Sarah Palin re-registers as a D and primaries our President. Wouldn't we see some contortions from the D party apparatchiks to squash THAT bug…


  • Obama ran on a platform that was pretty much Walter Mondale with less taxes and more charisma. He said he'd keep the tax breaks for most voters, and the Republicans used that to force him to either break that promise or give up on taxing the rich more. He said he'd reform healthcare, and he made a damn fine bill under insane opposition and accomplished something that was a progressive goal since pretty much the entire 20th Century or earlier. Yeah, it could be better. But are we closer or further from single payer now? I'd argue we're much closer. He said he'd focus on Al Qaeda, and he has to a good extent. He said he'd close Guantanamo, and his own party didn't back him on that. I can't see how he can be faulted for that, though others can. He said he'd work to end discrimination in many places and many ways, and he has a good track record of doing so (even if he can't say he's for gay marriage because he's aware of the political cost.) Really, the only place progressives can argue is that his healthcare bill has a lot of anti-abortion stuff in it. But I still think the positives outweigh the negatives there, and if anti-abortion language is so important I challenge any progressive to find the GOP candidate who'd be a better advocate for reproductive freedom.

    Yeah, he's infuriatingly stoic. But he knows his shit.

  • @jon

    Until the coming of Scott Brown our President had an un-stoppable majority in the HoR and a filibuster proof majority in the Senate. Why didn't he git-r-done vis-a-vis a Progressive Healthcare Bill Jon would really be Proud of? (instead of just a 'damn fine bill' w/ no public option in it…)

    Any meaningful 'insane opposition' came from people w/ a D on their jersey. The Rs ain't heroes, but your guys frittered away their oppportunity.


  • Shorter Bizarro-bb:

    If Ted Kennedy had gotten off his lazy ass and attended more Senate hearings, that "filibuster proof majority in the Senate" could have voted for those House bills. But since he was just a fucking drunk and layabout, Obama was stymied in his progressive agenda.

  • @cundgulag

    I read your referenced piece and I note:

    "Could Barack Obama have somehow rammed through the entire progressive wish list in five months? I find it hard to see how, given the unreliability of the blue dog Senators."

    Five months is tough, but again w/ unstoppable majorities EXCEPT for the 'unreliablity' of blue dog DEMOCRATS (which was my major point) your guys frittered away the opportunity.

    If everybody was sold out to the progressive agenda, they would have got it done even if they had to drag Sen Kennedy in on a stretcher to vote.

    But facts and figures don't seem to bother your narrative any.


  • It's so sad how commenters delude themselves.

    For instance, when confronted with the evidence that Barack H. Obama was strongly pushing for a healthcare bill without a public option, that he personally opposed to such a thing and made sure it didn't get into any legislation, here's what Real Democrats perceive:

    "Obama tried hard to get the public option into law but just couldn't do it."

    It's just sad.

  • Divorced? Whaaa? I thought you just got married. Oh well. Truly, you'll find out it's for the best. Until then, you can be the bitter drunk at any wedding reception. Every wedding needs one.

  • Looking back at his political career, BHO appears to have copied Voltaire's prayer – 'Oh God, make my enemies ridiculous'. And God has granted it. If McCain had actually picked Lieberan as his VPOTUS running mate (as I've read was his initial idea) Obama would have had a much harder time winning than he did, IMNSHO. And Ryan dropping out of the Senate race, to be replaced by Alan Effing Keyes? That would seem far-fetched in a novel. So I believe that the Repub candidate in 2012 will be someone who makes even another four years of BHO palatable to enough voters that he'll get the second term he so richly deserves to lose.

    Also, I have come to believe that he is actually governing as he would like to, Guantanamo and all. Yet, I'm almost certainly going to vote for him. Damn.

  • Ed, Sorry to read about your divorce. Not that this post is supposed to be about that, but I hope you can imagine how so many of us feel like we know you, reading such a personal-sounding writer every week-morning of our lives. And therefore, I hope you understand how many of us feel for you, as much as we can, and as much as it probably comes across as snooping.

    Anyway. Yeah, Ann Scheets does sound cool.

  • all these excuses for Obama. Gosh , Republicanism really works, Got people thinking Obama couldn't, wouldn't do what he did. All the bad progressives, Republicans, and so forth. they stopped Obama from doing x, y and z. just so awesome to read such defensiveness.

    poor Obama just couldn't do it. blah, blah blah. lol

    and you call yourselves non Republicans? lol. Get this hostage taking over with once and for all.

    the Zombies Rule!!!!

  • I don't know you Ed but re: that divorce thing… congratulations, sounds like you dodged a bullet to me.

    I actually found myself at a wedding after my 1st marriage fell apart, and felt sad until I started dancing with a very cool member of the wedding party.

    Years on, I am so fucking grateful for that divorce I can't even begin to express it. The marriage was a huge mistake and continuing on with it would have meant wasting years of the lives of both parties.

    I recommend a series of frivolous affairs followed by some soul searching.

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