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By David Edwards on 4/27/2006 8:01am PT  

Guest blogged by David Edwards of Veredictum.com


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George W. Bush's poll numbers continue drop in the newest NBC/Wall Street Journal Poll. Americans are now most concerned about gas prices followed by Iran nuclear weapons, illegal immigration and Iraq.

2 out of 3 Americans believe that the country is on the wrong track. 3 out of 4 people polled have lost confidence in the economy. 62% disapprove of the President's handling of Iraq.

Bush's approval rating dropped to 36% in this poll. Katie Couric suggests that the White House might be relieved that the President's approval only dropped one point.

There was also some bad news for Democrats in the NBC/Wall Street Journal Poll. When asked who should control Congress, people preferred Democrats over Republicans by 6%. This is down from a 13% margin in the last poll. The overall approval for Congress dropped significantly from 33% to 22% which is considered to be bad news for the Republicans who now control congress. The sinking approval of Congress may lead to low voter turnout for both parties.




By David Edwards on 4/26/2006 6:14am PT  

Guest blogged by David Edwards of Veredictum.com


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It looks like the conservative Fox News host, Tony Snow, will be the new White House Press Secretary. Snow is probably one of the more mature right-wing pundits. He has often been very critical of President Bush. In November of 2005 after Republicans lost Virginia's Governor race, Snow wrote, "His wavering conservatism has become an active concern among Republicans, who wish he would stop cowering under the bed and start fighting back... The newly passive George Bush has become something of an embarrassment."

It's an interesting PR move by the White House. Fox News predicts that Snow will command more respect from the White House Press Corps. Will the reporters go easier on Snow? NBC's David Gregory says that he will not change his aggressive style.

Here are a few more quotes from Snow (compiled by MSNBC):

  • "[President Bush has] lost control of the Federal Budget" - 03/17/2006
     
  • "No president has looked this impotent this long..." - 09/30/2005
     
  • "The English Language has become a minefield for the man. whose malaprops makes him the political heir not of Ronald Reagan but Norm Crosby... At one point last week, he stunned a friendly audience by barking out absurd and inappropriate words, like a soul tortured with Tourette's" - 08/25/2000
     
  • "The newly passive George Bush has become something of an embarrassment." - 11/11/2005

UPDATE FROM BRAD: Let's also not overlook Snow's mountain of irresponsible and inaccurate "reporting". A few examples here and then more here. Plus MediaMatters has some suggested questions for Tony's first snow job day.




Hello 20's?
By Brad Friedman on 4/24/2006 3:34pm PT  

We've truly enjoyed watching the contortions of Bush's GOP dead-enders who spin each and every new poll showing Bush at his lowest approval ratings yet, by trying to say that the numbers have "bottomed out", "can't get any lower" and therefore "have nowhere to go but up."

We (not so) respectfully disagree.

On the heels of last week's Fox News Poll showing Bush at 33% (which also revealed Republican voters as desperately out of touch with mainstream America,) followed by today's CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll just out showing Bush at an all-new new low of 32% with Republican support dropping off precipitously, we see no reason why numbers in the 20's (and falling) shouldn't be far behind.

Do you?




Those Identified in Survey as Independent Voters Vastly Agree with Democrats, Not Republicans, as GOP Voters Continue Their Move to the Extreme Political Margins
By Brad Friedman on 4/21/2006 1:01pm PT  

According to a BRAD BLOG analysis of the Fox "News"/Opinion Dynamics poll [PDF] released yesterday, which showed George W. Bush's latest approval rating at an all-time low of 33%, respondents in the poll who identified themselves as Republican are revealed by the survey time and again to be completely out of touch with mainstream American voters.

A review of the 13 questions asked in the survey where Republican majority responses differed completely from Democratic majority responses to the same question, finds that those identifying themselves as Independents agreed with the Democratic majority opinion nearly 100% of the time.

For example, on the question "Do you think it is appropriate for retired military generals to openly criticize Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld during wartime or not?," 71% of Democratic respondents said YES and just 24% said NO.

On the other hand, Republicans had the opposite opinion - YES: 36% and NO: 62%.

Breaking the tie then, were those identified as Independents who agreed with the Democrats on the matter by answering YES: 64% and NO: 32%.

In virtually every single case where Republican majority opinion disagreed with Democratic majority opinion, the Independents agreed with the Democrats --- suggesting that Republican voters, even in (or especially in) a Fox "News" poll are completely out of touch and out of step with mainstream America.

The only minor exception was on the question: "Do you think Donald Rumsfeld should resign as secretary of defense?" Democrats said YES: 57% and NO: 22%. Republicans said YES: 18% and NO: 67%. The tie was broken by Independents barely breaking in Republican favor with responses YES: 41% and NO: 42%.

The poll, however, has a margin of error of plus/minus 3% points. So the response from Independents wasn't conclusive as to whether they agreed more with Dems or Reps on that one question only.

After five years of malicious propaganda by Republican opinion-leaders attempting to paint Democrats as "out of touch with mainstream America," it's interesting to find that the Republicans' own Fox "News" Poll reveals that it is the GOP --- not the Dems --- who now seem to be on the "kook fringe" of American political public opinion.




Hume, Hannity, Gibson, Limbaugh Forced to Come Up With New Excuses
(We predict it'll all be the fault of the 'Liberal Media' of course)
By Brad Friedman on 4/20/2006 2:48pm PT  

How will the poor Fox "News" Bush dead-enders cover for their man now that their own poll is out showing Bush at all-time lows with just a 33% approval rating. That number includes a full 20% drop in Republican support from one year ago!

Just over a month ago, when CBS released their poll pegging Bush Approval at 34% the Fox Wingnuts bent over backwards to dismiss the poll as untrustworthy:

"This is not representative of the --- of the population of the country in any way, shape, manner, or form. Nor is the fact that Bush has 34 percent. ... You just know that's not possible. It simply isn't possible," Rush Limbaugh said on February 28th, when the poll was released.

Brit Hume on Special Report said, "[T]here's good reason to be skeptical of this CBS poll. It's wildly oversampled Democrats."

Sean Hannity spun with, "The first thing we find out that nearly two to one they polled Democrats."

And John Gibson joined the dead-enders-in-denial with, "Of course, it's weighted with more Democrats, so you've got to take that into account."

The CBS poll put Cheney's approval rating at 18% at the time, by the way. The Fox "News" poll, though it asks about the approval ratings of Condi Rice and Don Rumsfield, seems to have failed to poll on Cheney's approval rating for some odd reason. Go figure.

(Hat-tip to MediaMatters.org for tracking Fox "News" and their lack of touch with reality on this matter last February.)




By David Edwards on 4/17/2006 1:10pm PT  

Guest blogged by David Edwards of Veredictum.com


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The writers at SNL seem more than a little skeptical about the quality of Bush appointments. As White House Press Secretary, Lindsay Lohan couldn't possibly be less informative than Scottie McClellan.

This clip is the opening segment from Saturday night's broadcast.




I mean, More on Keyes...
By Brad Friedman on 9/1/2004 9:32pm PT  

Wow...that Alan Keyes interview where he called lesbian Veep daughter Mary Cheney a "selfish hedonist" for her lifestyle, along, presumably with any other heterosexual couple who can't, or chose not to mate, is even more astounding than just the quotes I gave you earlier.

He had more to say about loving couples that God has made incapable of having children together: "They cannot mate. They are not made to do so. Therefore the idea of marriage for two such individuals is an absurdity."

He then objected "to the notion" that we refer to two partners who cannot mate as having "sexual relations because it is nothing of the kind". Rather, he said, "It is the mutual pursuit of pleasure through the stimulation of the organs intended for procreation, but it has nothing to do with sexuality."

Here's the full transcript, and a copy of the audio, courtesy of AMERICABlog.

Wow. Finally, someone who's willing to stand up and publicly support the GOP Platform!

With that, I might have finally voted Republican, except for my fear that they might "mutually pursue pleasure through the stimulation of the organs intended for procreation" me!




Does the GOP have anyone else left to slur?
By Brad Friedman on 9/1/2004 6:37pm PT  

The Republican Party had the entire United States of America from whom to chose their nominee for the US Senate seat in Illinois. Demonstrating quite clearly the kind of party they are, they chose Alan Keyes. From Maryland.

On Tuesday, Keyes called the "Vice-President's" lesbian daughter Mary Cheney, a "selfish hedonist" apparently solely because of her sexual identity.

He did both that, and took a swipe at married couples who either can't, or choose not to have children all in one fell Republican swoop.

Said Mr. Keyes in a satellite radio interview this week:

"The essence of ... family life remains procreation. If we embrace homosexuality as a proper basis for marriage, we are saying that it's possible to have a marriage state that in principle excludes procreation and is based simply on the premise of selfish hedonism."

Asked whether that meant Mary Cheney was "a selfish hedonist," Keyes said: "That goes by definition. Of course she is."

So there ya go. You folks in the "married state" out there who have no children, are apparently "selfish hedonists" along with lesbian Mary Cheney. You, like those homosexuals who'd like to simply be recognized as a legitimate American family seem to have an "improper basis" for your marriage according to your party's national pick for the U.S. Senate.

Bush/Cheney '04: What's not to be proud of?




Worth the paper they're printed on
By Brad Friedman on 4/4/2004 6:52pm PT  

As the bad news for the Administration continues to unfold over the next several months (continuing trouble in Iraq as we approach 1 July, a passel of new books that they won't be able to stand any more than they could stand Richard Clarke's, the 9/11 Commission Report, as well as fallout from the widening investigations of the outrageous and still under-reported Medicaire hoax and the growing Plame outing scandal) someone is gonna have to take a fall or two for Bush's re-select chances to survive.

Thus, I offer my stunning prediction that at least two of the following will not be a part of the Administration by the time we get to November 2nd. CYA Mitigator --- While I believe at least two of them will actually resign, the worst case scenario is that instead of actually resigning they will announce *ahead* of the election that they will not be serving in a second Bush term:

(Listed in order of likelihood that they'll be gone - sez me)
George Tenet
Richard Foster
Dick Cheney
Karl Rove
Paul Wolfowitz
Condoleezza Rice
Colin Powell

Anyone I missed?




By Brad Friedman on 3/18/2004 10:00am PT  

And here I thought it possible that the Bush Administration would figure out that decieving, misleading and keeping secrets from the American People was actually counter-productive to their chances of staying in office.

What was I thinking?!

A stunning report today from AP uncovers a recent memo from a National Park Services Deputy Director that not only outlines planned cutbacks to our National Treasures, but the directive to keep them a secret from the public, the media and even congress!

From the memo:

"If you think that some of your specific plans will cause a public or political controversy, Marie and I need to know which ones are likely to end up in the media or result in a congressional inquiry."

It then goes on to say:

"...if you feel you must inform the public ... [do not] directly indicate that 'this is a cut' in comparison to last year's operation...We all agreed to use the terminology of 'service level adjustment' due to fiscal constraints as a means of describing what actions we are taking."

"If you must inform the public"?? Good lord. Anyone up for an 'executive branch adjustment' this November?




A Public Service to America
By Brad Friedman on 3/15/2004 6:05pm PT  

It seems to me that the most dangerous internal threat to our country, may just be the coup d'�tat by the Right to counter what they see as Liberal Media Bias by taking over said media and spinning it so far beyond reason to the Right, with such daily lockstep consistency, that it's become very difficult for the average American to even realize they are being spun anymore.

Thus, the Brad Blog - as a public service to America - is pleased to offer the occasional correction to the record.

True, we don't have a 3-hour-a-day radio show (yet), but we gotta start somewhere. So here we go:

Dear DittoHeads: Today Riush is telling you that "Liberals were in a panic" after the terrorist attack in Madrid last week because it demonstrated that Bush was proven right about this being a dangerous world. The "Liberals were terrified", Rush told you, until, of course, they began dancing with the joy three days later after the surprise victory of the Socialist Party in the elections which ousted the Conservative Administration that was complicit with Bush and his elective War on Iraq.

The result of those elections, Rush instructs you, was that "the terrorist have won" (true) and thus Liberals in this country are beside themselves with happiness over those results (a complete and total fabrication made up to suit Rush's agenda).

Now despite Rush's misinformation to the contrary - he doesn't actually know any Liberals or what they actually think about anything, or if he does, he won't waste his time by reporting it, but rather will simply makes up an absurd position for them that best fits his need to fill 3-hours-a-day with Pro-Republican propaganda.

Yo, Rushies, you are being played by your Master! Don't be a DittoChump!

It was the Bush Administration that was, and continues to be in a panic over these attacks. At least they should be (you see, I don't actually know anybody in the Bush Administration, so I'd merely be speculating on what they feel. See how I've actually told you about that? - That's what intellectual honest folks do. Get it?) But, if I were them, I would certainly be concerned. Both over the attacks, and the chill that must be running through their bones upon seeing the reactionary results of the election that followed.

It was the Bush Administration who didn't want to admit to you over the weekend (see Colin Powell's contortions on Sunday's Meet the Press for example) what was so obvious from the beginning: That these attacks were clearly the work of al-Qaeda. The same al-Qaeda that you have previously been told are "on the run" and "decimated" and "crippled". They are - clearly - no such thing. They have been radicalized and enthused by the West having fallen into the sand trap they've laid for us. We fell for it. Lost the focus on the War on Terrorism by our distraction in Iraq. An invasion which is the very Public Service Announcement that The Terrorists were looking for to display to their potential recruits that America is a threat to Islam.

That can't be admitted, of course, because it wouldn't do for the Bushies to be seen again as misleaders. Especially on the issue of Terrorism. Not for now, anyway. Not until they do their inevitable pre-Election switcheroo and go into The-World-is-More-Dangerous-than-Ever-and-only-Republicans-Can-Save-You! Mode. Coming soon to a Presidential Campaign near you!

It may take a while, but we will do our best to de-Spin you, DittoHeads! It's our patriotic American duty at least to try.

For the record, anybody who could speculate that the attacks in Madrid weren't the work of al-Qaeda, should note that the attack in Madrid came on March 11, 2004 - the precise 2� year anniversary of the 9/11 attacks and exactly 911 days since that day! Coincidence? We report, you decide. But try not to be a sucker in the meantime. Really, it's just not good for the country - or the world.




By Brad Friedman on 3/10/2004 12:01pm PT  

"I believe privacy is a fundamental right, and that every American should have absolute control over his or her personal information." - George W. Bush, October 2000

Okay. That's nice...But, as Arch Conservative Bill Saffire points out in today's NY Times, last month, John Ashcroft's Justice Department said - as they were subpoenaing the medical records of about 500 women who had had abortions - that medical patients can "no longer possess a reasonable expectation that their histories will remain completely confidential."

Okay. That's not so nice. Not a surprise - from the Ashcroft clan - but not so nice.

Now, I don't have anything in particular that I feel I need to hide, so I've never been one of those folks to get their panties overly bunched about perceived threats of invasions of privacy by the government. But even I can spot hypocrisy a mile away, and I hate it. Even more than foolish government policy.

The hypocrisy I'm talking about here is not Dubya saying one thing before getting elected, and then doing another. We're all well used to that old trick by now (aren't we? See his statements against "Nation Building", standing up to OPEC to keep spiggots open and gas prices down, not using 9/11 for political purposes etc. etc. etc.) - but it's once again, the Right Wing Echo Chamber of "conservative" talk radio and "news" that's really irritating.

How often do we have to listen to Rush and friends and read Drudge and listen to Fox about how poor poor Oxycontin Junkie Rush Limbaugh is being abused by Prosecutors who are seeking his medical records in a criminal investigation?

Oh, the Right is beside themselves with outrage about the treatment of poor Rush. But - to paraphrase our good friend - not hypocritical at all - William "Lucky 7's" Bennet - where's the outrage when it comes to the 500 anonymous women who are not even suspected of breaking any law at all having their medical records seized?

Has anybody heard Hannity going on about that one?

And today then, we learn that Dubya has had some 270 overnight guests in the Whitehouse and at least that many at Camp David. The bulk of them - you guessed it - Fundraisers.

Now, once again, I don't give much of a damn about it. But I do suspect you won't hear a lot about it in the Media. After all, how many years later were they still on about Clinton's fundraising pals despoiling the Lincoln Bedroom with their very presence?

Apparently it was Dubya himself that said, again, during the 2000 Election Campaign: "I believe they've moved that sign, `The buck stops here,' from the Oval Office desk to `The buck stops here' on the Lincoln Bedroom. And that's not good for the country."

I'm sure Fair & Balanced will be all over it first thing in the morning.

In happier news though, am I the only one who had a flashback while watching Mary Matalin on last Sunday's Meet the Press, trying desperately to describe how good Bush has been for our country and how bad this Liberal Democrat will be if he's elected?

It was like 1992 all over again, and we all know how well it turned out the last time Mary Matalin was forced to desperately defend her Bush.




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