Friday, March 13, 2009

Obama's Poll Numbers: Worse Than Bush?

Finding it hard to reconcile the grumbling you hear all around you with the media's reports that Barack Obama is enjoying "record levels of public support"? Well, as Ayn Rand noted in Atlas Shrugged, contradictions do not exist in reality. Check your premises, one of them must be faulty.

Or, of course, some of your information might just be...misinformation. From today's Wall Street Journal:

It is simply wrong for commentators to continue to focus on President Barack Obama's high levels of popularity, and to conclude that these are indicative of high levels of public confidence in the work of his administration.

Polling data show that Mr. Obama's approval rating is dropping and is below where George W. Bush was in an analogous period in 2001.

Overall, Rasmussen Reports shows a 56%-43% approval, with a third strongly disapproving of the president's performance. This is a substantial degree of polarization so early in the administration. Mr. Obama has lost virtually all of his Republican support and a good part of his Independent support, and the trend is decidedly negative.

A detailed examination of presidential popularity after 50 days on the job similarly demonstrates a substantial drop in presidential approval relative to other elected presidents in the 20th and 21st centuries. The reason for this decline most likely has to do with doubts about the administration's policies and their impact on peoples' lives.

So not only is Obama not "historically popular", the truth is that he and his policies are historically unpopular. Worse than George Bush's at a similar point in time, and that was after what the media still refers to as his "incredibly polarizing" 2000 election victory.

Amazing. The media, should it somehow serve their purposes, would report a "beautiful sunny day" when in fact, despite the sunshine, the temperature outside was -40 degrees.

More on the lack of confidence in the Obama regime:

Eighty-three percent say they are worried that the steps Mr. Obama is taking to fix the economy may not work and the economy will get worse. Eighty-two percent say they are worried about the amount of money being added to the deficit. Seventy-eight percent are worried about inflation growing, and 69% say they are worried about the increasing role of the government in the U.S. economy.

Seems like the American people are smarter than their leadership when it comes to economics, which is a worrying trend. One, because it leads to the conclusions that we are being lead by self-serving incompetents in a time of great national peril, and two, it leads people to believe that the government is essentially tuning them out and doing what it wants to do to help itself, and not the people they are supposed to be serving.

Loss of faith in government (as it is demanding more and more money from its citizens to grow itself while the rest of the world shrinks) combined with a media that refuses to tell the truth about it can lead to a usurping of some of our democratic institutions, to say the least.

Maybe it's time for our leaders to lead. Maybe it's time for Americans to vote them out. Maybe it's time for the media to start telling it as it is.

These polls are reflective of all that. Expect the downward trend to continue. One hopes our institutions can survive the fall.

UPDATE: Happier note: Notice how the Dow is rising as Obama's approval levels are sinking? Interesting correlation there...

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