Presidential Stock Breaks Down Amidst Missed Opportunity on Iran
posted at 10:55 am on June 21, 2009 by CK MacLeod
As some of you may recall, the President once compared the stock market and opinion polls, suggesting that they both have a way of bouncing around. We take him at his word, and therefore treat his numbers like those of a recent IPO offering. The PAI below registers the difference between Strong Approval and Strong Disapproval since inauguration:
In stock trading terms, this action qualifies as a breakdown below critical support – “0” on the PAI – to a new all-time low (also a new all-time high on Strong Disapproval, at 34%). Though a snapback is possible, though anything is possible, the odds favor further deterioration.
In my opinion no one factor explains this decline, and the overall weakness in OBAM probably has most to do with doubts about the Obama domestic program, but this week was also a major missed opportunity: The turmoil in Iran.
For quite some time now, since mid-campaign ’08, Obamanauts have been in love with the polls. (Of course, most of the rest of us would have been, too, if they’d been in our favor.) It can lead not just to laziness, but to foolishness – a compulsive, decontextualized focus on “who’s ahead.” I therefore noted with some amusement a recent Obama-troll poll reading in which the lefty was excited because Rasmussen last week showed a plurality of respondents approving of Obama’s response to Iran. Probably an arrested adolescent in his 20s like so many other political trolls, this particular individual didn’t realize that a president commenting on a foreign crisis in which a hated, violent regime is opposed by earnest, peaceful democracy protestors should come in at, say, 90% approval on anything he says.
It’s the kind of political slam dunk that should already be going up on the presidential scoreboard before the presidential mouth has opened. Instead, this President, this Leader of the Free World, this Hope and Change Lightbringer, couldn’t get more than 43% of likely voters to term his response “about right” against the alternatives “too aggressive” (9%), “not aggressive enough” (35%), and “no opinion/don’t know.”
For many months, but especially since January, a favorite “commentary” or “analysis” of current events from leftwing trolls has been a version of the President’s famous “I won”: The President won and is popular, so what he’s doing is right, and anyone who opposes him lost, is unpopular, and wrong. If the most passionate respondents in Rasmussen’s sample of likely voters are a leading rather than a trailing indicator, and mainstream polls follow, those on the left, including the President himself, will have to start defending their policies and positions on the merits again.