Friday, August 05, 2005

You Can Fool Half of the People All of the Time

The latest poll numbers according to the AP don't look the best for President Vacation:

The percentage of people who say they consider Bush honest has dropped slightly from the start of the year. In January, 53 percent described him that way in the AP-Ipsos poll, while 45 percent said they did not believe he was honest. Now, people are just about evenly split--48 percent saying he's honest and 50 percent saying he's not.

Alas, the proper poll follow-up question--"Are you an idiot, yes or no?"--wasn't asked. Of course for interpretation of these numbers the leftwing media turns to the conservative American Enterprise Institute, where Karlyn Bowman, a public opinion analyst, says, "Whether you agree or disagree with him, the president has taken a pounding on perceptions of his honesty." After all, it's merely a perception that Bush said there were WMDs in Iraq and only a perception that none were found. Those pesky perceptions. Bowman also seems to suggest that you can agree with the president even if he's lying, which leads us back to that all-important follow-up question.

The best part of the article might be when the reporter by necessity turns to the "person in the street," one of the few times reporters talk to anyone they don't already know or anyone who earns a salary less than the one they earn. Here we get some terrific damning with faint praises:

Some who don't approve of Bush's job performance admire him personally.

"I think he tries to be likable and I think he's somewhat honest," said Cindy Bashura, a Democratic-leaning resident of Seymour, Conn.

After all, what the U.S. deserves is a leader who is unctuous and follows alternate-side-of-the-street honesty rules.


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