[FoRK] How Barack lost my vote forever

Jeff Bone <jbone at place.org> on Thu Apr 24 09:06:04 PDT 2008

On Apr 24, 2008, at 9:47 AM, Paul Jimenez wrote:
> On Thursday, Apr 24, 2008, Jeff Bone writes:
>>
>> On Apr 24, 2008, at 9:26 AM, Paul Jimenez wrote:
>>
>>> True enough.  On the other hand, standing up to Bush is a good proxy
>>> for 'standing up for what you believe in in the face of  
>>> unpopularity'
>>
>> Not true.  Bush's policies are not popular --- his approval rating  
>> hit
>> an all-time record low for any president this week (a still, to me,
>> surprisingly-high 28%.)
>
> So you think it was the rest of the congress that was standing up to
> endorse an unpopular decision? Popularity among the people as measured
> by approval polls would seem to be quite different from the kind of
> peer pressure a congressperson is likely to feel about how to cast his
> vote(s).

Fair point, but again, I think it's a mistake to extrapolate too much  
from opposition to position re: Iraq 5+ years ago, in a time when  
massive confusion, FUD, and lies were the norm.  You could claim that  
Obama was one of few that stood up to Bush on this, but it would be  
equally valid to claim that Obama was one of few who stood adamantly  
on a pacifist ideology that perhaps wasn't appropriate given what the  
facts appeared to be.

I wasn't fooled by the FUD and lies then, but it is somewhat  
remarkable that so much of the Congress *was.*  To single anyone too  
much for that, or to use this as some kind of extremely pertinent and  
meaningful test, doesn't make sense to me.  The issue then was not  
"should I stand up to Bush or not" or "should I buck the popular trend  
or not" but rather "assuming I believe the statements about the  
threats in Iraq, how should I respond?"  You can ding most of Congress  
for credulity, perhaps, but that's not how you guys are positioning  
this.

But if the election is nothing more than yet another referendum on the  
folly of that war, which I think we've clearly *already* had ad  
nauseam, then as I've said --- Obama's your man.  How many times do we  
have to iterate on that one?

jb



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