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Parsing the Polls: Voters Mad as Hell

Turnout will be the most important factor of the upcoming election. Midterms are typically low turnout affairs with only the most dedicated partisans casting their ballots. To date, intensity among Democrats has far outweighed that of their GOP counterparts. Republicans are hoping that a focus on terrorism will energize their base, thereby neutralizing the Democratic fervor.

A new poll conducted for CNN by the Opinion Research Corporation shows that voters are unhappy and itching for a change, although it also indicates that both Democrats and Republicans are more enthusiastic about this election than previous ones -- a positive sign for the GOP.

Let's Parse the Polls.

The most intriguing question in the CNN survey asked: "Would you say you are generally content with the way things are going in the country today, or is there something you would say you are angry about?"

More than three-quarters (76 percent) of the sample (1,004 adults) said they were "angry about something," while 21 percent said they were "generally content." Three percent had no opinion. Contrast that with a similar poll conducted for CNN in early February that showed 59 percent of the sample was angry compared to 32 percent who were content and nine percent who had no opinion.

Asked how things are going in the country, 54 percent said badly, while 46 percent said well. Looking closer, however, there is a considerable intensity gap in those two views. Twenty five percent said things were going "very badly," while just nine percent said things were going "very well."

Other recent surveys back up this sense that America has gone off the rails. In a Cook Political Report/RT Strategies poll (in the field Aug. 25-27), 28 percent of the 801 registered voters tested said America was heading in the right direction, while 64 percent said it was on the wrong track. A Newsweek survey conducted by Princeton Survey Research (Aug. 24-25 of 1,002 adults) produced a similar result. Twenty eight percent said they were satisfied with "the way things are going in the United States," while 65 percent said they were dissatisfied.

The CNN poll also asked voters to rate the job Congressional Republicans and Democrats were doing. Just 31 percent said they approved of the way Republican Members of Congress were handling their duties, while 64 percent said they disapproved. The numbers weren't markedly better for Congressional Democrats with 57 percent disapproving of their performance and 35 percent approving.

Again, this result is backed up by oodles of other survey data. A Fox News/Opinion Dynamics poll in the field late last month showed a paltry 21 percent approving of the job Congress is doing, while 61 percent disapproved. The Cook Report/RT Strategies survey showed it 31 percent approve/58 percent disapprove.

The last poll to ask voters to rate the jobs being done by Republicans and Democrats in Congress was conducted in late June by the Los Angeles Times and Bloomberg. The results were roughly equivalent to the CNN survey; the approve/disapprove for Republicans was 31 percent/42 percent and 34/36 for Democrats.

While the above results would seem to indicate that voters will cast a pox on incumbents in both parties this fall, it may not be that simple.

The reality is that Republicans control all the levers of power in the government, a fact that Democrats will make sure voters are well aware of before Nov. 7. Therefore, anti-incumbent sentiment is likely to more directly impact Republicans this fall since they are both literally and figuratively in charge.

The CNN numbers back up that supposition. Just 27 percent of those tested said they were more likely to vote for the incumbent in a race, while 55 percent said they wuld be more inclined to support the challenger. Compare that to a CNN poll taken in 1994 when 21 percent said they would back an incumbent and 48 percent said they would back the challenger. (It's worth noting that this question has limited scope because in real races the candidates are not generic. When voters are informed of the foibles of the real life challengers, they often opt for the incumbent devil they know.)

One element of the CNN survey that Republicans are likely to take as a positive sign is that both sides appear to be more enthusiastic to vote in 2006 than in previous elections. Forty-seven percent of Democrats and 44 percent of Republicans said they were more enthusiastic to vote compared to past elections, while 40 percent of Democrats and 38 percent of Republicans were less enthusiastic this time around.

In 1994, just 29 percent of Democrats said they were more enthusiastic to vote in that election than in previous contests, while 50 percent said they were less enthusiastic. Those numbers presaged the depressed Democratic base vote, which led to massive Republican gains in both chambers.

At the moment, the Republican base's level of energy appears strong. That DOES NOT mean that Republicans will avoid losing seats this fall -- a certainty at this point -- but it could well limit their losses in districts with a reliable Republican base vote. It is those seats that will decide the majority come November.

By Chris Cillizza  |  September 6, 2006; 4:15 PM ET
Categories:  Parsing the Polls  
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Comments

To all who say, "I used to be a Republican," or "I've always been a Republican":
• "always" Republicans are generally people of principle
• "always" Republicans base their reasoning on something more substantial than personalities

which means, if you're now going to "vote straight Democrat":
• you were not ever a Republican
• you are not believable
• you're simply trying to add "weight" (i.e., respectibility) to your proclomation (choice) of being a Democrat.

There is nothing now expoused by the Democrats that would have ever been remotely acceptable by one who was at one point "always" or "usually" a Republican. The Democrats today puruse policies modern Republicans (today, last year, last election, etc.) would have been intensely opposed to.

If you want to vote "straight Democrat," then vote Democrat. If you want to explain your reasons for voiting Democrat, then make your case. You don't need to hide behind the respectibility covering of saying you were once a Republican. Real Republicans know better.

On the other hand, it is certainly understandable that you are hesitant to come out into the open as one who believes in Democrat ideals and philosophies. As long as you can simply be against Bush, or the war, or whatever else you're against, without having to proudly say, "I am a Democrat because I believe in the righteousness and appropriateness and the viability of the Democrat platform," then you can avoid having to defend Democrat ideals and philosophies.

Saing "I was once a Republican" gains you acceptance by your fellow Democrats and helps you escape articulating and cogently defending Democrat ideals.

Posted by: south carolina | September 14, 2006 2:28 PM | Report abuse

I've been in government (DoD) contracting for 25 years now and the reason we do no-bid contracts is indeed to deal with emergency situations. However, we don't do FIVE year no-bid contracts unless there is no one else who can do the work. Halliburton is not the only company that can do the work they were awarded the contract to do. So during the ONE year no-bid contract they should have been given, work should have been ongoing to compete a long term contract to provide the needed services. When the contracting officer noted this when she signed off on the contract, she was fired. Halliburton was given the long term contract for no other reason than Cheney used to be the CEO.

Posted by: KAS | September 11, 2006 9:58 AM | Report abuse

I am a registered Republican who lives overseas and I am disgusted with the Republican leadership (and not particularly impressed with the Democrats either). Never have I seen respect for America overseas at a lower point and it is obvious to those overseas, if not those in the U.S., that the war in Iraq does nothing but recruit terrorists worldwide and George W. Bush is the chief recruiter.

Posted by: David Foster | September 9, 2006 5:22 AM | Report abuse

everyman, I didn't say they couldn't be stolen, just that they are harder to steal, now that most of the West has moved to mail-in ballots for all of our elections, which automatically have a paper trail.

But, yes, the corrupt, unethical, and amoral Bushies will probably still try to steal votes.

Posted by: Will in Seattle | September 8, 2006 3:33 PM | Report abuse

I find it amazing to say the least that after denying there were any secret prisons for so long just two months before the elections Bush gladly runs out and tells everyone "oh yea by the way there are secret prisons and were going to be sending these guys to gitmo and I need you to pass more latitude for me to try these guys without giving them any evidence and if they get roughed up well that's o.k. to!"
Not to mention the fact that while saying with a straight face for five years they could do nothing to control gas prices, just two months before the election low and behold those prices are coming down!!! It's a flat out miracle that's what it is!!
Now let's see we have a "Republican" who helped write the 9-11 report, who's son is running for office by the way, also helps write a story for ABC about 9-11, just two months before the election blaming the Clinton administration for 9-11, irregardless if it's true or not, my what webs we weave! Anyone stupid enough to not see through the Republican party's blatent abuse of the truth the facts, and lowering gas prices will be dumb enough to buy into this and vote for the Repubs again, only to find out on December 1, the price of gas going up again, for no apparant reason, and the Bush people will be out telling everyone they don't have any control over gas prices! Cheney will be in his cave counting his money and Rove will crawl back under his rock. Rummy will be still guiding our soilders to stand firm in Iraq, with a bulls eye taped to their back and Bush can go back to reading the back of the "novels" so he can say he read 60 more books, I'm sure Laura tells him what all the "big" words mean so he doesn't get confused. Anyone who cannot see through this Administration, Congress etal, need to come to Idaho where we have lovely beach front property for sale!!!
Sue F

Posted by: Sue Filutze | September 8, 2006 11:15 AM | Report abuse

www.911revisited.com

Posted by: freedomforusa | September 8, 2006 4:23 AM | Report abuse

I have read most of thecomments:
It is so amazing that many think the Democrats have no ideas,hmmmmmmmmmm don't they have cable, don't they watch C-Span don't they listen to the other channels besides Foxews?
Democrats are not afraid to take a stan on anything, I know becuse I;ve been around a long time. Democrats are PEOPLE PROPLE .
Just because we don't scream hate and fear and all party line rhetoric you Republicans think we are inconsequential. I hope in the future (honest
) elections we will see a change for the better. I surely don't want another do nothing Congress or an incompetent Administration. The only way Reublicans can destroy reputations of Clinton and Democrats like PELOSI and others is to call them ugly names and distort the truth. Look at
Proud to be a Democrat!

Posted by: MAS | September 7, 2006 4:33 PM | Report abuse

Larry:
Republican 55,713,412 Dem 52,745,121.

These are the vote totals for the Nov. 2 2004 election regarding the House. Where do you get the dems won 53%...perhaps you could explain this to me. Also, you say Bush cheated in Ohio and you call this a fact. Has there been a trial and conviction somewhere that I have missed? Last I checked...no charges were even pending.

JEP: Are you actually quoting yourself and then patting yourself on the back?

"Republicans could never win a popular election, all they have ever won was "unpopular elections."

One of my best lines, ever."

Dude...how do you get out of a room with that head of yours...jeez.

Posted by: FH | September 7, 2006 4:30 PM | Report abuse

Just one last post to show where all this "slobber" started:

"If it was Democrat seeking a competition-free deal, you neocon wannabe toadies would all scream bloody murder.

But when your Republican masters want the same easy money, you SLOBBER ALL OVER YOURSELVES looking for an excuse to overpay them billions."

There is where the dribbling began, and hasn't stopped since...

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 4:10 PM | Report abuse

What did I miss? The election showed that Gore was chosen by 600000 votes over Bush. You stated that American people choose Reps all the time. Truth is Republicans have not won an honest pres election since 1988. I am just exposing your lies

Posted by: Larry | September 7, 2006 3:58 PM | Report abuse

"JEP is going to require that I solicit bids to buy milk."

more slobber...

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 3:56 PM | Report abuse

Larry, you can cite every poll but you seem to miss the only one that counts - the election.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 7, 2006 3:56 PM | Report abuse

"Have you been studying synonyms for your upcoming SATs"

I took those back in the late 60's, and actually scored pretty well, believe it or not...

It is quite refreshing to be confused with a freshman, considering I have one son who is a lawyer, another who has created numerous congressional campaign websites, and a beautiful daughter with her own child, (my granddaughter.)

And my wife teaches flute at the local college... She's playing the Mozart Flute Concerto with the local orchestra this season...

Does that re-arrange your image of me any, K?

Goes to show, you shouldn't trust yourself for an informed opinion.

Signing off;

JEP

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 3:55 PM | Report abuse

I will continue to expose your lies KOZ. Almost everything you post is a lie. It is for your own good because neocon fantasy world will soon cease to exist. It is true Bush sits in oval office but the american people chose Gore by 600000 votes and your lies will never ever change that.

Posted by: Larry | September 7, 2006 3:48 PM | Report abuse

Party affiliation in 2006 is as follows- 38% Dem - 30% Rep - 30% Ind. Guess that shows American people prefer Dems huh?

Posted by: Larry | September 7, 2006 3:46 PM | Report abuse

There's that stooge time-warp larry chiming in from 2000 again. do you have this notion permanantly on your midget sized cranium? Despite all your proclamations, I suggest you check and see who is sitting in the chair in the oval office. this is the kind of argument that passes for Dem thought these days.

and JEP is going to require that I solicit bids to buy milk. If I am in a hurry I am not allowed to be ripped off for 30 cents from 7-11. there will be a JEP patrol at the door who insists I head over to safeway and buy the milk that is on sale. and somehow, I am the fascist.

And the final word from JEP was that I flunked out of Econ because I don't require bids for every single transaction in my life. the paltry intellect is giddy. and then to repeat one of your so-called "brilliant one-liners" and bore us all with it again. you surely love the sound of your own ignorant bliss. We however are not convinced by blabbering.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 7, 2006 3:44 PM | Report abuse

Forgot to mention a book that came out during the time Clinton was POTUS and accused him of everything, yes, including the big one. Seems to be the repugs cannot defend GW, and goes back to their favorite, "Bash Bubba".

Posted by: lylepink | September 7, 2006 3:42 PM | Report abuse

It is easy to shutup KOZ. If America prefers Rep control why did the AMERICAN people choose Gore over Bush by 600000 votes? Why did Dems win 54% of senate vote and 53% of house vote in 2004? Why did Bush have to cheat to win Ohio in 2004? So I guess the facts say America prefers Demsespecially when Dems have controlled both Houses of congress for most of last 80 years. Oh by the way where are WMDs and bin Laden? I am sure you will keep posting your lies over and over again.

Posted by: Larry | September 7, 2006 3:28 PM | Report abuse

"My point is that we are in a capitalistic society but that does not dictate that we search for bids on every transaction we conduct."

Unless I am mistaken, the the first thing I learned in Econ 101 was the law of supply and demand...

Yes, Virginia, a capitalist society is REQUIRED to search for bids on every transaction. It is actually part of what defines a free-enterprise system.

If I worked for someone in the business world other than myself, and got caught giving contracts to my pals for more than the lowest bid (for the same work), I would probably get fired. If someone working for me did it, I would fire them.

Those are the rules of free enterprise and capitalism, like it or not.

K, don't reference Economics Class if you don't know the rules it teaches. You just, once again, proved your own ignorance trying to suggest it was ours.

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 3:28 PM | Report abuse

"your attempt at getting a zinger"

..is this your new terminology for Truth?

Every time you read something that tugs at your conscience, its a "zinger?"

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 3:23 PM | Report abuse

The movie, about 9/11, is supposed to be a 'Docudrama', whatever that meams. The talk all day has been it and how it was previewed by the Liberal Media. Rush and some other talk radio folks go the movie to see, but none of the folks that would tend to suppoer Bill Clinton. This is on cable news channels, and BTW, the terror status alert has been missing for a number of days now. The cable provider has changed, may be the reason, I don't kmow. There are a bunch of good reading in the Post today, trying to keep up is going well so far. Chris has out done himself today, keep up the good work.

Posted by: lylepink | September 7, 2006 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Before I sign off, just want to post another line from today's posts, that should cut to the heart of every one of you Bush apologists...

"Integrity" means having the same moral approach to every issue, not changing it to fit your misguided loyalties.

later,

JEP

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 3:21 PM | Report abuse

do you call all of them and inquire as to their prices? Why or why not? Is your individual behavior significantly different than a large organization? how? I asked you to put on your thinking cap, not your tin-foil one. your attempt at getting a zinger has short-changed a rational response to a question. Again, a non-response with a feeble attempt at humor.

My point is that we are in a capitalistic society but that does not dictate that we search for bids on every transaction we conduct. do you check the cow supply before you buy milk. the efficient market has done much of your work for you.

Are there any Dems out there who passed an econ 101 class I could challenge in this debate? Or is Komrade Karl your only source of thinking on this topic? you seem very confused.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 7, 2006 3:17 PM | Report abuse

"Republicans could never win a popular election, all they have ever won was "unpopular elections."

One of my best lines, ever.
Sure sums up tha past couple decades.
Seems to hit a nerve with ur neocon posters, too.

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 3:14 PM | Report abuse

How many taxi cabs do you call to go to the airport? why? how many grocery stores do you frequent? why? Put on your thinking cap and get back to me.

Boy, howdy, this is rich..

How many taxicabs are listed in the phone book?
Dozens...
How many contractors get those no bid contracts?
ONE!!!

Your argument ended at the yellow pages.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 7, 2006 3:11 PM | Report abuse

"this is just silly when a bunch of commie Dems start complaining about the free market. how many sides of your mouth can you carp from?"

So, K o' Z, Do you believe in both no-bid contracts and free enterprise?

How about a simple yes or on?

DO you understand the analogy?

Or are you one of those who can justify anything, as long as you don't have to admit you are wrong? I would guess it doesn't matter, as long as you don't have to admit you arewrong about anything.

Seriously, which side are you on?
Free enterprise or fascism? Or don't you recognize the difference?

I'm no commie. I was raised on Main Street, in Iowa, in a family with a retail clothing store and a hybrid seed-corn company.

So I think I can claim to have at least a basic understanding about what I speak of. But I have never been a government employee, so I guess I have a different perspective on Free Enterprise than K o'Z.


Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 3:07 PM | Report abuse

It's the media's fault???

Ha ha ho ho. you are truly operating from an entirley different dimension.

I guess you mean people are too stupid to see through the shallow lies that professional politians foist on the unsuspecting public. and media and corporations are complicit in this evil partnership. In fact, if it weren't for brave, selfless, omni-cogniscient bloggers like you, whose only agenda is truth, justice and the American Way, we would all be unsuspecting sheep in the horrid galaxy of lies.

the truth you disdain but pretend to cherish is that we do see through the lies - yours, and we do get the result we prefer - R control. see how simple it is, even a Republican can understand.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 7, 2006 3:05 PM | Report abuse

JEP - have you been reading one of those self-help books on writing? your prose are very slilted and mildly amusing. Have you been studying synonyms for your upcoming SATs?

Can you please comment on the sole-source contract the government is holding my retirement account hostage in?

can you explain why you want a sole-source for health care?

this is just silly when a bunch of commie Dems start complaining about the free market. how many sides of your mouth can you carp from?

How many taxi cabs do you call to go to the airport? why? how many grocery stores do you frequent? why? Put on your thinking cap and get back to me.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 7, 2006 2:54 PM | Report abuse

"what if a product can only be obtained from a single source?"

more slobber...

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 2:54 PM | Report abuse

"Can you scritinize this website and please inform me why, despite several election losses in a row, the Dems think that a majority of Americans support thier possitions?"

Because, over the past two decades, that same, real majority has been methodically and perniciously denied access to membership in the process, and patently discouraged by a consumer media that puts campaign advertising profits before public duty.

Simple as that.

Republicans could never win a popular election, all they have ever won was "unpopular elections." A popular election equals voter turnout, which the Republicans discourage quite efficiently in all but their own quarters.

Would everyone agree with me that any political party that discourages comprehensive voter participation should not be considered a democratic institution?

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 2:53 PM | Report abuse

"And then you will have to blog from some secret location.."

Since Poindexter had his way with our internet providers, there just ain't no such place...

And as for The Truth, I believe it can not be shaken, and that your opinion is questionable because you are a victim of clouded ideological perspective.

And while you may want it to match your delusions, Truth will always remain "true", and either you embrace it, deny it or spin it. But you can not determine it. Truth stands alone, and our embrace of it is a thing we call "integrity."

So, whether you agree with me or not, at least admit the truth when it is obvious.

Like admitting that no-bid contracts are the antithesis of free enterprise.

If it was Democrat seeking a competition-free deal, you neocon wannabe toadies would all scream bloody murder.

But when your Republican masters want the same easy money, you slobber all over yourselves looking for an excuse to overpay them billions.

"Integrity" means having the same moral approach to every issue, not changing it to fit your misguided loyalties.

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 2:40 PM | Report abuse

I did read the CBS article. DId you? They are talking about two different contracts.

Halliburton subsidiaries had previously bid and were awarded logistical contracts with the US military.

The Army Corps of Engineers contract for oil field reconstruction and others, including supplying gasoline to Iraq during the reconstruction, were on a no-bid basis until Hallibrton got greedy and overcharged the US by some $61 M and Bush had to step in.

Posted by: RMill | September 7, 2006 2:32 PM | Report abuse

Jim D do you mean it is OK as long as there is "close" scrutiny?

JEP - you are truly confused by your emporor mentality. what if a product can only be obtained from a single source? Like another run of tanks or F18s? I suppose the government should compel a private industry to begin competing. sounds like a typical big G commie idea to me.

do you mean the kind of close scrutiny that would find a sub-contractor from a different country overcharging for gasoline? Or maybe some other kind of close scrutiny - like the close scrutiny of FEMA in NO? Or is it only military projects that deserve scrutiny.

If you scritinize the SS trust fund, can you tell me the geographic location of my particular IOU's?

If you carefully scrutinize the government education system, can you tell my why as spending goes up performance goes down? very perplexing.

Can you scritinize this website and please inform me why, despite several election losses in a row, the Dems think that a majority of Americans support thier possitions?

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 7, 2006 2:31 PM | Report abuse

I am not sure how you got all those implications from my post. I stated and documented simple facts that Halliburton was not the only company capable of doing the work, they did receive a no-bid contract, it has been investigated for overcharges to the federal government and that politics does play a part in such awards.

I am well aware that government cannot solve every problem and stuggles to address even a few basic ones.

The only evil implied was that politics plays into the process (sorry for the reality check).

No-bid contracts do happen, more often than they should. Despite your claims of oversight and reams of paperwork, the Bush-Cheney administration was lambasted categorically by the national press corps on this one, to the point where Bush himself inserted himself (very unusual) and back pedalled quickly, claiming that all overcharges by Halliburton would be expected to be returned and the replacement of the no-bid work with a full bid process.

As far as the implication that Bush used the invasion of another country would benefit stock portfolio's, how do you think the defense industry was built in this country? I never said he invaded Iraq to boost Halliburton stock, but once we got there, why not?

I have never stated that every Republican action is evil and every Democrat is an angel. I don't know how you got this out of what I write except that you are obviously in full defense mode and lashing out blindly.

I generally do not like to engage in these discussions on days when everyone's feathers are ruffled and trading insults. It demeans the purpose of the discussion.

Finally, you can keep dreaming on the mid-term results and yes, two months is a long time in politics. But it is becoming more clear that the tide of anger is real, that Republicans have the most to lose and Democrats are likely to be the beneficiaries.

Posted by: RMill | September 7, 2006 2:28 PM | Report abuse

"These are very dangerous bullies we are talking about here, GSS and CACE are two very acrymonious acronyms, representing the kind of people who WILL shut you up if they really believe you are any sort of threat."

And then you will have to blog from some secret location...to give us Your...oops I mean The truth.

Posted by: FH | September 7, 2006 2:24 PM | Report abuse

"Pentagon officials say they gave Halliburton the prewar oil reconstruction contract because it was essential to start rebuilding quickly after the U.S.-led invasion. Halliburton already had the competitively bid contract to provide short-notice logistical help for the Army."

From your CBS article. did you bother to read it. This WAS a competatively bid contract which grew into a larger contract. this happens all the time, particularly when a contracting device already exists and time is of the essence.

you all never give up on this mindless spinning and angling to some evil disposition. Try to live in the world of facts for a while and we can have a decent debate.

and by your own posting and admission, the Army is going to bid this out although this "news" is from 2003. that is what passes for Democratic talking points, old news, based on innuendo and lies and with the pertinant parts cut out. the light of day is blinding to you fools. Care to take another try?

Posted by: Anonymous | September 7, 2006 2:24 PM | Report abuse

kingofzouk - there are exactly two shipyards in the US that can build a nuclear sub - Newport News in Virginia and Electric Boat in Groton, Conneticut. Trident submarines were built under sole source contracts at Electric Boat but under very close government supervision.

Posted by: JimD in FL | September 7, 2006 2:21 PM | Report abuse

"I don't pretend to know everything..."

Sure you do.

Stop being in denial of it.

Its why we love you so much. You make all the rest of us know-it-alls look pretty smart.

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 2:20 PM | Report abuse

Will

"...this election can't be stolen"

Remember for every system there is some imaginative person who will figure out a work around....particularly if there is something major at stake.

Also anyone who believes they have designed a "fool-proof" system is a fool in thinking that.

Did you ever wonder why Dubya respects and pays homage to Chicago's Mayor Daley....It certainly is not for the Republican votes his machine controls.

Posted by: everyman | September 7, 2006 2:19 PM | Report abuse

"do you know why the government often has no-bid contracts?"

DUh!
Because they are controlled by people like Dick Cheney, who makes sure his company gets the gravy.

Don't be naive, K o' Z. No-bid contracts are immoral and should be illegal. All the spin in your limited verbal arsenal can't change the hypocrisy of a party that claims to be consumate capitalists then signs no-bid contracts for their top members.

I know you won't change your mind because of this, K O'Z, but it is a simple truth. If you believe in free enterprise, you can't allow no-bid contracts at the highest level, it is sheer hypocrisy.

But still, you will let you mind twist away in the wind, trying to find a way to excuse your totalitarian icons claiming to be capitalists. Your heroes are, at best, monopolists, and at worst, fascists.

But isn't that the same thing?

REAL capitalism can't abide the "no-bid" concept, but in every case throughout history, it fits quite well with fascist monopolists..

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 2:19 PM | Report abuse

I don't pretend to know everything there is to know about government contracting (imagine that -- a blogger with limited knowledge). I do know from my professional experience that the contracting process is very closely watched and is replete with paperwork and justifications. a sole source or so called "no-bid" contract is simply not that unusual. It is not for the evil purposes you imply, it is because of the task. I know you all think that any government organization can solve any problem, but it is just not that way in reality. I suppose one could look at any result through jaded eyes and cynically see manipulation and avarice. but that is an assumption which is based more on your particular outlook than the reality. FH's point is a good one. If you see every Repub action as evil and every Dem action as good, you are indeed beyond help and reason. Seek professional help. this next election loss is going to send you over the edge.

the implication that Bush could somehow use the invasion of another country to juice up a stock portfolio clearly demonstrates that you are completely nuts.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 7, 2006 2:12 PM | Report abuse

Because I know you like supported and cited information, according to the federal government, 68 other companies were eligible to receive bid information for the work.


The Army Corps of Engineers reviewed bids for the $2 billion in contracts that replaced Halliburton's no-bid award. At least 69 companies -- including Halliburton -- were sent solicitations, according to a Corps Web site.

from CBS News

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2003/12/11/politics/main588122.shtml

Posted by: RMill | September 7, 2006 2:06 PM | Report abuse

Luckily, most of the Western states where much of the population lives have already moved to paper ballots - we have mail-in elections using optical scanners, which have an automatic paper trail.

So it's likely this election can't be stolen.

Posted by: Will in Seattle | September 7, 2006 2:03 PM | Report abuse

"JEP: The MSM doesn't report it because it's a bunch of crap. You, Drindl, MikeB and others seem to believe every rumor about every GOP candidate or action."

People like FH don't want to admit, that when we start talking about Republican scandals, every time someone says "the other shoe is about to drop" doesn't quite realize that the Republican Scandal Bug is a CENTIPEDE, with more shoes falling every day.

How many little scandals does it take to make a big scandal? Does calling the truth "a bunch of crap" make it so?

Most reasonable people have come to expect a new, sordid story every few days, if not more regularly. And yes, FH, we usually dobelieve it when someone tells us that some republican got caught cheating. We would be naive to doubt it.

Blackwell's blackwellian voter fraud habits may just land him in the Federal pokey, along with a number of his co-conspirators.

Including our pal Turdblossom and some of his operatives at GSS.

But, that is just one more of those shoes that centipede will be dropping soon. I'll let you in on what I have known for a while: Along with eyewitnesses, there are "secret" videos showing live examples of some of these voter-fraud shenanigans, which, when added to the evidence now mounting, makes for a very solid case against the entire top end of the Republican Party in Ohio.

Someone, just who it is I can not say because I don't know, is holding this evidence as a trump card for future political distribution. But when that shoe drops, watch out, many of these neocons' off shore tax havens will quickly become permanent residences.

This Ohio Election Fraud story will inevitably break into the public news cycle.

It is just too big to spin. But one word of caution.

These are very dangerous bullies we are talking about here, GSS and CACE are two very acrymonious acronyms, representing the kind of people who WILL shut you up if they really believe you are any sort of threat.

One way or another.

So if I may paraphraze one of my favorite lines from "Big Trouble in Little China," If you don't hear from me by tomorrow, call the President.."

Unfortunately, he will deny everything.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 7, 2006 2:02 PM | Report abuse

FH - partisan hacks. Yes indeed. But we do not belong in this particular fiefdom. Or should that be playground.

but they never, ever, ever offer anything of substance yet delude themsleves into thinking they are more clever and entertaining than all others. Zing, I got you with some old rehashed talking point from Air America. Yet they profes to know more about anything that happens to come up; more than economists, politicians, military professionals, teachers, etc.

And this is simply by chanting over and over the same 1992 (or maybe 1968) drivel. In this quasi-rational state, time has stood still. Ha ha, no wonder they alwasy lose elections but still have to resort to "Martians stole my election" for the reason.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 7, 2006 1:57 PM | Report abuse

Speaking of ignorance...

Are you telling me that Halliburton (and its various subsidiaries) is the only company in the world (or even the US) with the ability to rebuild oil fields or clear debris from storm damage or providing troop support services?

If you think that contracts are not awarded based upon political favoritism, then you have never worked in government.

Posted by: RMill | September 7, 2006 1:56 PM | Report abuse

your ignorance of the government bidding process is on display. that didn't stop you from offering opinion disguised as fact on Haliburton no-bid contracts.

do you know why the government often has no-bid contracts? It is generally because the job required is of a nature that very few or only one organization can provide the service. there is a mountain of paperwork required to justify this, something you would know if you were paying attention and not busy chanting and insulting. how many companies do you think are capable of housing and feeding a large deployment of soldiers in a foreign land while maintaining security? Hint:Greenpeace can't pull it off. how many companies do you think can build a nuclear sub?

this is just another example of silly pot-shots and zingers meant to obfuscate instead of explain positions. notice Drindl came in with her usual tripe (not a single fact or material tidbit ever offered, just spew) and still no answer to my perfectly reasonable questions.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 7, 2006 1:44 PM | Report abuse

"I think the Republican voters can be just as angry against all the Democrats who block the military tribunal effort.."

Sorry,"losers", you are simply wrong.

This crybaby excuse for "anger" is hardly a balance against our outrage that the 3,000 Americans murdered on 9-11 are somehow avenged by the violent and bloody deaths of 3,000 American soldiers in Iraq.

...while Bin Laden "lives peacefully" in Pakistan?

Your pitiful attempt at anger is a candle compared to our "righteous rage" bonfire. The only losers in your game are the American People, not as one party but as a whole.

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 1:42 PM | Report abuse

Not included in The Fix analysis from the CNN poll

The most intriguing finding for me and what the Republicans have most to fear is the following:

CNN Poll conducted by Opinion Research Corporation. Aug. 30-Sept. 2, 2006. N=1,004 adults nationwide. MoE ± 3.

"For each of the following descriptions, please tell me whether you think it applies more to the Democratic Party or to the Republican Party. . . ."

"The party of change"
Dem Rep Both Neither Unsure
% % % % %
56 29 3 8 3


CNN Poll conducted by Opinion Research Corporation. Aug. 30-Sept. 2, 2006. N=1,004 adults nationwide. MoE ± 3.

"In general, do you think that the federal government's policies on issues that matter to you needs a complete overhaul, major changes, minor changes, or no change at all?"

Complete Major Minor No
Overhaul Changes Changes Change ?
21 41 30 7 1

So 62% think major shake up is required and 92% are looking for some kind of change. 56% see the Democratic party as the party of change.

Some additional parsing with questions asked earlier regarding the independent voters:

I can't find the details of the CNN poll but I found other recent polls that breakdown Indies-

Newsweek Poll conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates International. Aug. 24-25, 2006. N=895 registered voters nationwide. MoE ± 4 (for all registered voters).

"Suppose the elections for U.S. CONGRESS were being held TODAY. Would you vote for the Republican Party's candidate or the Democratic Party's candidate for Congress in your district?" If other/unsure: "As of TODAY, do you LEAN more toward the Republican or the Democrat?"

Rep Dem Unsure
29 47 24


CBS News/New York Times Poll. Aug. 17-21, 2006. N=1,206 adults nationwide. Results below are among registered voters.

"If the 2006 election for U.S. House of Representatives were being held today, would you vote for the Republican candidate or the Democratic candidate in your district?"
Rep Dem Other Depends Unsure
19 43 1 20 17

In the following two polls, the number one issue among independent voters was the Economy.

CBS News/New York Times Poll. Aug. 17-21, 2006. N=1,206 adults nationwide. MoE ± 3 (for all adults)
IND
Stregthening 23%
the economy
Iraq 22%
Terrorism 21%
Health Care 20%

Newsweek Poll conducted by Princeton Survey Research Associates International. Aug. 10-11, 2006. N=901 registered voters nationwide. MoE ± 4 (for all registered voters)
IND
The economy 22%
Iraq 19%

Posted by: RMill | September 7, 2006 1:40 PM | Report abuse

JEP: The MSM doesn't report it because it's a bunch of crap. You, Drindl, MikeB and others seem to believe every rumor about every GOP candidate or action. At the same time, you defend everything the dems do or say as if it were gospel. Partisan hacks like you add nothing to the discourse that any moderate or reasonable person can take seriously.

Posted by: FH | September 7, 2006 1:38 PM | Report abuse

Reference "Bush isn't running." - two nights ago on one one of the cable shows Joe Klein noted that he had attended a Chris Shays meeting within the past couple of days. He said that he spoke with a number of people (presumably Republicans) outside after the meeting. They all said that they liked Chirs and that they thought he was a good Congressman, but wouldn't vote for him this time because it's a vote to support the Administration.

Ya' think Bush isn't running?

Bush knows that there is a lot in this election which is all about him. Otherwise, why the spate of campaign-like appearances and speeches? They haven't been to support local candidates, have they.

Posted by: Nor'Easter | September 7, 2006 1:32 PM | Report abuse

Che

You have much too much time on your hands if you are able to type that much.

We all know that Ohio and Florida had organized vote manipulation.

What you learn in Chicago that When things are done, they are over. Results won't change.

And nothing will change in 2006 or 2008. I doubt there will be federal intervention.

And Dubya's people now skew the Supremes so in the unlikely event it got to their level, any legal action to correct the process would be blown off.

Get Real.

Vote Fraud is a fact of life and the Republicans have systematized just like they have in their very effective control of PR and the news media.

And hey have got 50.0000000001% of the electorate believing its the Liberal side of the aisle that controls the media.

What a joke

Posted by: zippy | September 7, 2006 1:30 PM | Report abuse

Conspiracy theorists, here's a list to Google over;

Just how does the GSS relate to TIA, CSA, Diebold Software and Scientology?

...a conspiracy expose' of monumental proportions...

Many other acronyms will fall...

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 1:26 PM | Report abuse

Voter anger is the topic, and I think the Republican voters can be just as angry against all the Democrats who block the military tribunal effort. Why can't this get passed so the Gitmo trials will start?
If the Democrats won't get this passed, they deserve to be defeated.

Also, read Howard Kurtz's commentary about the ABC movie on today's Washingtonpost: Clinton Administration Officials Assail ABC's 'Path to 9/11' , ( Post, Sept. 7 ) It is amazing the VOLCANO of activity to defend Clinton, over 20,000 letters from his defenders. Amazing.

Posted by: Dems are losers | September 7, 2006 1:23 PM | Report abuse

Che;
WOW!

Thanks for keeping us posted.

We knew it was coming, I just hope the MSM serves it up for public consumption.

If not, once again it will be up to the blogs.

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 1:12 PM | Report abuse

I think I'll change my "JEP" moniker and start blogging as "TheBlogsKickABC'sButt" which is going to happen very soon.

"ABC Kicks Clinton's Butt" as a blog name is just outrageously dumb, and would be funny if it weren't so pitiful. In spite of their attempts to degrade him publicly, Clinton (Bill, that is) just grows more popular, which irks the neocons to no end.
They tried their best to oust Clinton, and couldn't do it, even with Impeachment. So now they're getting delusions of revenge, after-the-fact.

But it is so laughable, and their desperation so transparent, thy look like bitter novices challenging a wise old statesman.

It is like Tanya Harding punching it out in the ring with an inflatable Muhamed Ali doll, then claiming she "kicked Muhamed Ali's butt."

By the way, always keep in mind, it ain't "The Blog" they are afraid of, it's "The Blogs," which is why it works so well.

And why "they" are so afraid of us...

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 1:07 PM | Report abuse

Sorry Drindl probably not clear. not talking work of the people in the "present" state of things, but if in fact we do take over a portion of Congress in Nov...I want to see the dems getting down to govern right off the bat..I'm all for making the Shrub as lame a duck as possible, but also don't want the talking heads predictions of "investigation, hearings, et al. to become fact...And like i posted i do believe they'd be pointless..Haven't we had enough pointless over the last six or so years?

Posted by: TheIrishCurse | September 7, 2006 12:58 PM | Report abuse

No insult meant to the Donners, their gruesome menu was made out of necessity, this is just Republican neocon self-consumption.

I would guess most of the actors and actresses involved in "The 9-11 Lie" on ABC are also ideologically bound to the delusionary premise of the production.

Intentionally or unintentionally, I am quite certain I will avoid their work henceforth, now they have so openly aligned themselves with the neocon trainwreck crew.

But I WILL watch "The Bad Lieutenant" just and show it to others, as a reminder of how Hollywood sometimes quite cosmically reveals the subtle truth with a big lie.

"Lawlessness" seems to be a very identifiable and common factor among the neocon character models.

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 12:54 PM | Report abuse

"Drindl this debate is between military men, and not with lazy housewives. Watching "JAG" doesn't give you the expertize to talk about something you have no clue about.

Posted by: bhoomes | September 7, 2006 10:54 AM"

Now Chickenhawk Bhoomes is trying to pass himself of as a military man? Just like President AWOL Codpiece?

Bhoomes is a Bushbot (Bush robot), programmed to repeat talking points ad nauseam. The last original thought he ever had died of loneliness a long time ago.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 7, 2006 12:54 PM | Report abuse

Not going to see a plan from Reps. the plan has always been bigger government, higher taxes on the middle class and kill off their children in the military. If these are wrong please clarify for me. I don't expect any differences to be forthcoming since only one person has ever responded with substance on this site. the usual response is an insulting non-sequitor replete with chanting the usual non-sense.

Please name one program the Reps would eliminate or cut?
Please name on effective military strategy that might work that deviates significantly from Bush's on-going total disaster.
Please name some idea that would be acceptable to a majority of Americans.
(you might want to review Newt's 11 points for some ideas).

Until then, continue with your name-calling and chanting. Still no content from Bhoomes. Just chants.

Posted by: Original thought hurts my brain | September 7, 2006 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Not only do I take care of my kids and house and husband, I'm also a technology writer and I do lots of volunteer work. That's why I'm on line.. and I guess I just have lots of energy.

What 'work of the people' do you see going on, Irish? I'm afraid all I see in DC now is the work of the devil.

Posted by: drindl | September 7, 2006 12:44 PM | Report abuse

Where have the 119 comments disappeared? Did Chris purge them?

Posted by: Anonymous | September 7, 2006 12:42 PM | Report abuse

Drindl, sure would like an accounting of my tax dollars, but even halting the work of the people to investigate well Halliburton would be pointless..There like the street corner hustler with the pea and shell..Now you see it now you don't..You don't become a mega-conglomerate without learning how to effectively and completely bury the bodies..

King, how about education for a change? Think No Child was a good start, but started out and remains under funded. As a country if we look in our rear view mirror technology wise we'll see China and India gaining ground..Immigration be next..need to plug the hole first then move on to what to do with illegals already here..

bhoomes, gotta be "hard work" sleuthing and detecting as you do...if you do..

Posted by: TheIrishCurse | September 7, 2006 12:29 PM | Report abuse

Your a good man JimD who represents what the democratic party use to be about not the crazies like move-on crowd. Drindl my days and hours are staggered and I do my postings from my personal Lap Top, not that you would know anything about holding a job. Drindl how to take care of your children and clean house if you are always on line?

Posted by: bhoomes | September 7, 2006 12:29 PM | Report abuse

I think that insults the Donner Party...

Poor old zouk and bhoomes... pathetic. Why do you care what I think about your rantings and ravings? I don't bother to answer you because you wouldn't listen. You can't. Like your presdient, you can't be wrong.

I've been hearing the same tired talking points, the same discredited, pathetic rightwing agenda for years now, and debunked it over and over. But like zombies, you keep spouting it. So why bother? Zombies is a good term for you, actually. Yo don't realize how really braindead you are.

Posted by: drindl | September 7, 2006 12:28 PM | Report abuse

"Please name one program the Dems would eliminate or cut?"

No-bid contracts for Haliburton, maybe?

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 12:25 PM | Report abuse

Free speech also includes the right to publicly picket and boycott any movie, theme park or cartoon we feel represents the neocon agenda.

And try as they might ABC can't separate itself from Disney and Mickey Mouse, and vice-versa, so the shareholders will be the ultimate victims of this ideological willfulness.

These Republicans need to realize, resurrecting Monica MIGHT get their base fired up, but that base is dwindling down into the 'teens. And while many Disney shareholders may actually be part of that number, they, too, will jump ship when their investment returns get tested.

The only questionable beneficiaries are those deluded conservative idealogues who suppose this propaganda will somehow "fix" what's wrong with this election cycle. But they are just nibbling away at their own base, not building it up.

It is the neocons cannibalizing themselves. Maybe we should start calling the "Grand Old Party" the "Donner Party"...

Posted by: Anonymous | September 7, 2006 12:23 PM | Report abuse

Amen, JEP. I am sickened by the unholy alliance between religious fundamentalists and the Republican party. Give us a real religious progressive like William Jennings Bryan over today's Religious Right which is afflicted with cognitive dissonance.

Posted by: Zathras | September 7, 2006 12:19 PM | Report abuse

As a Bible-reading Christian, I have to say that the substitute teacher who said "there are some people, and I'm one of them, that believe George Bush was placed where he is by the Lord," isn't reading her Bible very carefully.

Political authority, as it appears in scripture, is one of those "temptations" Jesus was offered in the wilderness; in Luke Chapter 4, verses 5 and 6, worldly political authority is pretty well defined as the Devil's realm.

Now, I know Lucifer's purported to be a very good liar, and that may assuage this perspective somewhat, but can any good-hearted Christian really believe these warmongers are blessed by God? Does promoting war and torture and gaining bloody profit from selling weapons, fit with what good people consider to be their benevolent, forgiving God?

There is a very good argument that can be made between believers of any faith that Democracy is God's way of giving this power to All The People, instead of those twin "fallen angels" of greed and ambition giving it a wealthy few of them.

But when democracy is perverted from within, then who is, once again, in charge? They made their deal with the Devil, and traded death, war and torture for their power. Greed and ambition have taken complete control, and we got The Bush Dynasty out of the deal.

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 12:04 PM | Report abuse

the people you want to surrender to are in the 7th century. I suggest you get your burka fitted and look for a new line of work. all bloggers will be shot first.

Look up the word hysteria and tell me what the roots are? notice the photo of Drindl in the caption.

Irish, I am willing to listen to the Dems if they can show me what it is they have in mind. I am still waiting. Minimum wage? government health care? this is all I have heard whiperings about but that vote fails everytime in the house. not inspiring.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 7, 2006 11:58 AM | Report abuse

"We're stuck in about the 11th at the moment..."

This is an unjust statement----to people of the 11th century.

Posted by: Zathras | September 7, 2006 11:53 AM | Report abuse

The people who want to boycott Disney seem to be more likely to complain about the ABC movie. Howard Kurtz has a very impressive column today about the ABC movie.

http://letters.washingtonpost.com/W8RA03AA94288AE25F27F33F329710

The legacy of Clinton? good gried, we had him for 8 years and most of us lived through his impeachment. The simple statement is this:
Clinton should have come out right away in January 1998 to admit and apologize. He hide behind his wife's skirt, and even Madeleine Albright covered up for him. They tried to spread rumors about Monica as a stalker and there was no truth in the story about the affair. That is the truth and the Democrats know it.
Clinton failed to apologize, and should have put the issue behind him. Instead, he keep covering up for his stupid behavior and dragged down his own legacy.
Clinton and all his buddies have made a big fuss about this ABC movie. How much of a fuss did they make over the British movie, "Death of a President"? Free speech and free expression is celebrated by the Hollywood liberals until there is a target on their boy Clinton.
If you think it is ok to watch the British film, then I dare you to watch the ABC movie as well. Ok, I double dare you.

Posted by: ABC kicks Clinton's butt | September 7, 2006 11:52 AM | Report abuse

Not going to see a plan from Dems. the plan has always been bigger government, higher taxes, can the military. If these are wrong please clarify for me. I don't expect any differences to be forthcoming since only one person has ever responded with substance on this site. the usual response is an insulting non-sequitor replete with chanting the usual non-sense.

Please name one program the Dems would eliminate or cut?
Please name on effective military strategy that might work that deviates significantly from Bush.
Please name some idea that would be acceptable to a majority of Americans.
(you might want to review Newt's 11 points for some ideas).

Until then, continue with your name-calling and chanting. Still no content from Drindl. Just chants.
Zathras - it is not GDP growth, it is revenue into the treasury. ever heard of Arthur Laffer. He has actaully published something in economics which advances this idea and was clearly demonstrated by recent economic happenings. to tie a capital gains decrease to GDP would require a chain of causations that could not be proven in a statistically acceptable fashion. Most economics and social theory suffers from this complexity issue. but job creation and unemployment and new business start-ups can and have been shown to be decisively linked to tax rates, espcially capital gains which are the tax which most strongly effects small businesses and the capitalist class. As a Dem you should stick with economic arguments you are more comfortable with - like it would be nice to raise the minimum wage so those teenagers can afford more beer and cigs which would increase the ability to pay the trial lawyers those huge sums.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 7, 2006 11:52 AM | Report abuse

Preview
Friday Line
Governors

1. NY Spitzer runaway
2. MA Only ? is which Dem
3. OH Continues double digit leads across the board and increasing. Leading in $ too.
4. MD Average Dem lead +8-+10
5. CO Average Dem lead +8-+10
6. AR Tightening but Dem still leading
7. MI Dead heat; polls switch weekly who is up by 2 pts
8. MN Mixed results; Hatch secures Dem primary next week and should solidify polling numbers some
9. IA Toss up with Dem with slight poll advantages
10.ME/RI New England states with battered incumbants. Could cancel each other out in double party switch

Others to watch: AR, AK, CA, FL, GA, IL, NV, TX, WI

Posted by: RMill | September 7, 2006 11:45 AM | Report abuse

Irish, do you really NOT want to know where 80 bllion taxpayer dollars have disappeared to iraq?

I don't care about impeachment either -- I just want the madman stopped. If we have the house or senate, we can do that. Let him spend two years TOTALLY impotent, i don''t care.

But I think we have a right to know what happens to our tax dollars.

And I think what we stand for is taking back our country from reckless radicals and bringing us into the 21 century. We're stuck in about the 11th at the moment...

Posted by: drindl | September 7, 2006 11:44 AM | Report abuse

As i sit here i still have no clue as to what us dems represent or what our message is..I have the feeling alot of dems are simply going to rationalize that "hey we can't do worse", and i imagine we can't..But is that what we want to hang our hat on? I for one want to hear NOTHING about impeachment, investigations, hearings, etc..Still waiting for our "plan" on governance if we do indeed take over the House...
PS..bhoomes, it's 10:30 in the morning..Why aren't you out sleuthing and detecting crime?

Posted by: TheIrishCurse | September 7, 2006 11:38 AM | Report abuse

bhoomes

I will not argue for Carter nor dispute that morale improvement began under Reagan. But, budget increases started in fiscal years 1980 and 1981 and those were Carter budgets. I was stationed at a major headquarters in Europe dealing with budgets. I saw the increases and we had data on a lot of budget lines. Many of the increases were not felt until Reagan was inaugurated but the increases were appropriated before he took office.

Posted by: JimD in FL | September 7, 2006 11:34 AM | Report abuse

or mine, rather.

Posted by: Zathras | September 7, 2006 11:30 AM | Report abuse

For 50Cal and a lot of other Republican apologists, the new refrain is that Bush isn't running, that the races are local. I don't see it that way and neither does anyone else. This is a NATIONAL election coming up. The issue is to STOP BUSH! This madman has very nearly wrecked this country. He has ruined hundreds of thousands of lives, he has handed tax breaks and get out of jail free cards to the rich and wealthy, he has turned a blind eye while corporations sell our nations military secrets and technology to enemy governments (Ford's new CEO is a good example. He was the CEO of Boeing which was caught selling cruise missile guidance and propulsion systems to China. His punishment under Bush's watch? A pay raise!), he has committed criminal acts that ought to land he and Rove and Cheney and the rest of the thugs in his White House in prison for the rest of their miserable lives. The Republicans pontificate about 9-11. Look at what happened to the families of those killed. The firemen and policemen and emergency workers received on average two lousy years salary. The families of the rich stock brokers, the bond salesmen, the investors received on average 8 million dollars! The Republicans passed bankruptcy legislation that threatens to cost fully one-quarter of American's ther homes in this looming recession - one, by the way, they have brought on by actually encouraging the outsourcing of jobs. No. This is a NATIONAL election that is coming in November and I and millions of voters intend to sweep the Republican's out of office like yesterdays garbage. The Democrats certainly haven't "gotten it" yet. A lot of them still support outsourcing and feed from the same pigs trough the Republican's get their swill. We CAN and WILL deal with them, but if we are to have a society and a democracy under which even that hope exists depends upon stopping Bush and the Republican-corporate traitors.

Posted by: MikeB | September 7, 2006 11:30 AM | Report abuse

The above comment was fine. Sorry for the lack of a sig.

Posted by: Zathras | September 7, 2006 11:30 AM | Report abuse

KOZ: "1. you can't raise taxes and have a booming economy simultaneously"

You mean like the mid-90's, when the top tax rate was increased to 39.6% and the economy underwent an enormous boom?

Here's some reading for you:
http://www.taxpolicycenter.org/publications/template.cfm?PubID=9494

Quote
"Capital gains rates display no contemporaneous correlation with real GDP growth during the last 50 years."

If you don't understand that paper or the quote, I'll be willing to walk it through with you. Growth is not affected by the tax rates given in the U.S., not even capital gains rates.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 7, 2006 11:28 AM | Report abuse

US Defense Spending (in millions of dollars)
1976-87,917
1977-95,147
1978-102,259
1979-113,605
1980-130,912
1981-153,868
1982-180,714
1983-204,410
1984-220,928
1985-245,154
1986-265,480
1987-273,966
1988-281,935

Posted by: Mikepcfl | September 7, 2006 11:27 AM | Report abuse

JimD - Thanks for the first hand information on the Post VietNam Carter-Reagan re-building of the U. S. Military. My sources were simply articles that I read at the time (1979-1980) in the Washington Post, etc. Carter's program was long-term, five+ years, involving "x" Trillions of dollars (that's correct, Trillions). Given the scope of the process the results naturally weren't be visible until the mid-1980's.

It was noticeable to me at the time because Carter who was under siege for lots of things, was actually doing what our government is almost always criticized for not doing - long-term strategic thinking. Reagan took the program and ran with it.

Ironically, one of the benefits was that the Iron Curtain countries weren't Capitalist enough to afford to keep pace.

Posted by: Nor'Easter | September 7, 2006 11:26 AM | Report abuse

Oh god, both the trolls are here. Flee! Flee!

zouk with his beloved straw men and stale discredited conservative fantasies -- 'cut the military' 'raise taxes' 'big government' blindly stumbling through life, unable to see that his party is the one that is crippling the military, raising taxes on the middle class and creating the biggest government in -every way -- in history.

'Drindl this debate is between military men, and not with lazy housewives'

Can't you feel the testorone pumping. Better cool off bhoomes boy. Lazy? Do you really work for the state of OHio, like you said? do they know you spend your whole life online?

After I pick myself up off the floor from laughing, remind me to tell you about how your hero Reagan, sacrificed hundreds of US troops to slaughter in Lebanon and then cut and ran.

Posted by: drndl | September 7, 2006 11:25 AM | Report abuse

US Defense Spending as a percentage of GDP
1976- 5.2%
1977- 4.9%
1978- 4.7%
1979- 4.6%
1980- 4.9%
1981- 5.1%
1982- 5.7%
1983- 6.1%
1984- 5.9%
1985- 6.1%
1986- 6.2%
1987- 6.1%
1988- 5.8%

Posted by: Mikepcfl | September 7, 2006 11:20 AM | Report abuse

this is what passes for "fact" in the Dem world.
Carter was a great president and built up the US military and presided over a great economic expansion. Reagan, on the other hand, was a total flop, hated by all and drove this country into the ground.

when challenged on these preposterous notions, thay begin chanting "rush has brainwashed you" "you can't think, You are dumb, we are smart." no need to respond with anything material.

Yet somehow, through it all, elections have proven that the chanting doesn't work. carter was a one-term total failure. Reagan was appreciated even by Libs.

some day, in the future, after a giant attack on US soil, all the Libs will start chanting "Why didn't that evil, stupid Bush warn us and prepare us against this menace?" "I spilled my latte and I am mad as hell."

Except for a few things which are at odds in your Lib world:
1. you can't raise taxes and have a booming economy simultaneously
2. you can't cut the military and be safe or effective
3. you can't be liberated when the government controls everything you do

I know you nutjobs will continue chanting "idiot, delusional, mindless" in your typical idiotic, mindless and delusional manner up until election day when you will be baffled how voters could have possibly voted against their interests and contrary to all notions of intelligence. Must be some sort of technical stealing. how did those dummies pull it off against us geniuses? Even after all this time you still don't get it. your message stinks. you have nothing to offer. find me one positive thing Drindl or FB or others have offered short of spite and bile. same as all the Moveon bigots. they have been reduced to some sort of cartoonish stomping and ranting contrarian who ignores all interaction and sallies forth with the same simple, dumb points that have been discredited for years. "Bush lied, Bush's war, preemptive war, unilateral war, pointless war, etc." Devoid of facts but repeated often enough to fool the inattentive.

I actually had a fairly interesting interaction with Will yesterday and it turned out the differences between what he thought and what I thought were fairly coincidental. so I don't understand why this slight change of degree warrants all the hate. Explain.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 7, 2006 11:19 AM | Report abuse

I forgot to sign that last one, it was by me...

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 11:16 AM | Report abuse

"Drindl this debate is between military men, and not with lazy housewives"

Can I get a group "DUH!"

As a recovering Dominant Male, I can say that, if Drindl and her kind were making policy decisions for us, instead of dumb lumps like bhoomes, we wouldn't be in this mess.

Bhoomes' desperation for authority just crossed every line, I think he could be effectively administrated right off these pages.

Isn't this a very good illustration of the deeply ingrained, pompous ignorance of "the base" (that term "the base" can be interpreted in more than one way) that we, as a People, have to overcome, not just in our political process, but in our society as a whole?

The upcoming elections promise to become something of a referendum on "Neanderthalism in Government" and these big, dumb "doofusses" who simply do not deserve authority, will begin to be disempowered.

Maybe 2006 is going to be a referendum on The Democratic Evolution of Mankind... Lets get on down the evolutionary political road to the place where we are ruled by reason(D), not ignorace(R).

Posted by: Anonymous | September 7, 2006 11:13 AM | Report abuse

The training and morale problems mentioned above didn't start with the Carter Adminstration. As a vet who joined during the Johnson admistration and ended during the Bush 1 Administration, I can tell you morale and training problems started in 1973. Money was cut short as the military started booting out people to lower the numbers after Viet Nam. I remember sitting in a class where almost half of the students were discharged. Many of them deserved it, but it had an effect on morale for the rest of us. The way we left Viet Nam had an effect on morale. Many older weapons systems had to be removed from service because they had been used up during the war. The decision was made not to replace them with the same old systems but to wait until the new ones in the development pipeline were ready to deploy. The B1 was canceled because it was thought to be vulnerable to a new generation of Soviet AA missiles and fighters. The B1 was developed to attack the Soviet Union not as a general purpose bomber. The Carter Administration had its problems, but being the cause of training and morale problems in the military wasn't one of them.

Posted by: Ol' Time Vet | September 7, 2006 11:11 AM | Report abuse

"Drindl this debate is between military men..." Come on, bhoomes, you can think of better forms of denial than just fact-free bluster, can't you? JimD put together a very nice post, pointed out that he was on your side (at least at the time) and you completely ignore everything he said. Manners, manners....

Posted by: Judge C. Crater | September 7, 2006 10:59 AM | Report abuse

Anyone who has children or grandchildren watching the Disney Channel these days might already have misgivings about the social propaganda our young are being fed there.

There's not a "poor" kid, anywhere in their line-up, they all wear designer clothes and live in fancy penthouse suites, or in picture-perfect homes with never-a-dirty-floor.

And the only really Progressive character in any part of their children's show line-up is Raven's ditzy white toadie-girlfrien, who is portrayed as an addle-brained hippy-type environmentalist, constantly spouting stupid Yogi Berra-isms, whose spacey idealism gets in the way of Raven's meaningful consumer reality.

But, then, the Disney corporation has never been a great friend to progressive open-mindedness.

Here's a thought...people could dress up like Bugs Bunny or one of those competing cartoon characters, and picket outside Disneyland, carrying signs about "The 9-11 Lie."

Wouldn't that be a PR fiasco, those beefy Disney Security goons hand-cuffing Bugs Bunny, Elmer Fudd and Betty Boop...

They'd best watch out for Yosemite Sam, ...he may not go quietly.

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 10:57 AM | Report abuse

Drindl this debate is between military men, and not with lazy housewives. Watching "JAG" doesn't give you the expertize to talk about something you have no clue about.

Posted by: bhoomes | September 7, 2006 10:54 AM | Report abuse

'THE BUILDUP OF MORALE AND TRAINING STARTED WITH REAGON'

See what I mean with the delusional? You present them with facts and they either ignore or start shouting their lies louder.They cannot listen, cannot learn, cannot think.

Posted by: drindl | September 7, 2006 10:42 AM | Report abuse

JimD: With all due respect, I suspect you were spending your days in some cushing pentagon office and not out with the troops who actually do the fighting. Now maybe the gave you guys gas for your vehicles but we were rationed to the point we couldn't even make it through a shift wthout having to get out and walk. Being in acquistion, you must know the B1 was killed under Carter and brought back to life under Reagon and yes while the were plans on the books for new weapon systems, they were not fully funded until Reagon took office. I entered the military under Ford and voted for Carter in 1976. Carter was just about the worst Commander-in-Chief we ever had. His poor performance had a lot to do with me beooming a republican. Sorry JimD, but you are simply wrong, THE BUILDUP OF MORALE AND TRAINING STARTED WITH REAGON.

Posted by: bhoomes | September 7, 2006 10:39 AM | Report abuse

I have a question for any republicans out there -- now that Rush, I mean Bush -- has admitted that there are secret CIA prisons, which he used to deny -- does that make him a liar or a flip-flopper?

Posted by: drindl | September 7, 2006 10:38 AM | Report abuse

richard, richard... how else would they all be saying exactly the same thing at exactly the same time, in exactly the same words?

Do you really not know that there are weekly strategy sessions -- Wednesday mornings -- with Grover Norquist, Limbaugh, Rove, Kristol, and of course Frunk Luntz, the strategist who compiles the talking points? I have downloaded several sets of talking points... it isn't like this is a 'thery' -- they freely admit it.

And for all of you who wonder how our country got into the state it's in, I found this tragic quote this morning:

'Still, some Southern women remain stalwart supporters of the president and the Republican Party. At a watermelon festival in Chickamauga, in the mountains of northwest Georgia, substitute teacher Clydeen Tomanio said she remains committed to the party she's called home for 43 years.

"There are some people, and I'm one of them, that believe George Bush was placed where he is by the Lord," Tomanio said. "I don't care how he governs, I will support him. I'm a Republican through and through."

Completely mindless, a drone, sleepwalking through life. 'I don't care how he governs' -- god help us.

Posted by: drindl | September 7, 2006 10:37 AM | Report abuse

While I would find the specific subject discussed somewhat distasteful, the suggestion that the conservative press outlets and their sundry writers take their cues directly from the White House is an intriguing suggestion.

Posted by: poor richard | September 7, 2006 10:24 AM | Report abuse

Reading the last few posts have convinced me of one thing for sure. People Are MAD. This is a simple fact, no spin. Fear is the weapon of choice, a very powerful one I might add.

Posted by: lylepink | September 7, 2006 10:19 AM | Report abuse

Karma is an interesting thing. If Rove starts instructing his minions to insinuate the word "pedophile" in a desperate attempt to label his political adversaries, people may begin to wonder about Rove himself.

Single, boyish men with no known history or even evidence of any heterosexual relationships,who live in White Houses and have friends like Jeff (the male escort)Gannon, visiting at odd hours, shouldn't throw too many stones, they may just ricochet.

Does anyone know what they think of Rove down in Houston's "Montrose" district? Wasn't that his old stomping grounds?

If only the Truth was as accessible as The Lie...

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 10:18 AM | Report abuse

Well boys and girls, we have again missed the point with all the ocncern over Mr. Rove's allegedly companionship preferences that have populated this noble exercise in what'e left of the First Amendment.

It appears that the real mastermind has returned- The Spin Meister without Match, Ms. KAren Hughes. She is so good.

Yesterdays turn of events with he president shifting gears, putting faces on the perpetrators of 9/11, calling on the responsible, upright and patriotic members of his party to sanction his demolition of the Bill of Rights, and saying between the lines 'How can any person criticize him and his party for bringing these people, the embodiment of the devil, to some form of justice.

You know. "Terrible Swift sword..." and all of that.

Change gears. Watch the Republican lbby sorts go into high gear doing the dirty work.

Did anyone see this morning's Midwestern Mouthpiece, for the administration-The Chicago Tribune for the uninitiated?

In the several times weekly promo section for the conservative right wing, strangely referred to as their Op Ed page, weekly contributor Jonah Goldberg of the National Review, cam thiiiiiiiiiiiiiis close to associating the phrase 'pedophile' to Joe Wilson by strangely comparing the Ramsey/Karr fiasco with the Plamegate. Lots of saying 'pedophile' and administratrion opponents in the same breath-of course sayign that Jow W was not a pedophile.

It is akin to the interviewer's technique of asking a candidate for office "When did you stop beating your wife?" Obviously flawed question....No good answer.

My point. Like hihoward somewhere above. the RNC spin machine is in high gear. The sheer gullibility of the about half our population, a tremendous amount of 527 money and desperate politicians will make this a very nasty election.

Combined with alleged control of voting machine programming in key states by a notable Industrial administration supporter, there is a chance this administration could keep control of both houses.

Whichever faith one subscribes to. God Help us.

Someone said in a blog yesterday. Are these the kind of people who should be running a democracy.

This is not Germany in 1938.

Posted by: poor richard | September 7, 2006 10:05 AM | Report abuse

Agreed, JEP, already doing. What's possibly most outrageous is the relationship ABC has formed with rightwing racists, neonazis and white supremacist bloggers who have been allowed to see this movie -- but Madeline Albright was refused. I guess they don't mind insulting half the country. I have emailed and phoned a lot of peoople there: Here's some emails from a dailykos diarist -- i'll look up phone numbers if anyone wants. I have a friend who decided tp cancel her family trip to Disneyworld. That's a good start.

' Send an email (from your own personal email) to Iger and other key execs at ABC/Disney, and call them. Key emails: patrick.k.preblick@abc.com, jonathan.hogan@abc.com, erin.felentzer@abc.com, netaudr@abc.com, investor.relations@disneyonline.com.'

Posted by: drindl | September 7, 2006 10:05 AM | Report abuse

May I invite the rest of you to join me in a boycott of Disney? Does Mickey and crew belong down there in the seventh level of neocon hell, with WalMart and McDonalds?

If Disney actually produced the tripe we are hearing about, it is time for the public to demand "The Mouse" stay out of politics and stick to fairy princesses.

If they go through with this historical revision plot, I say lets boycott Disney and ABC.

So lets show Disney who their public really is (or "was"), by boycotting their products and productions.

Whatever personal benefit the Disney board of directors might derive from dabbling in historical revisionism, their shareholders will surely not appreciate the financial losses they will incur because there are a lot of normal, mainstream folks who don't appreciate them manipulating the truth into a lie.

BOYCOTT DISNEY! Pocketbook politics in its finest form.

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 9:52 AM | Report abuse

I believe Chris has a good point when it comes to the South.

I moved from Chicago to the Nashville area nine months ago and discovered the infamous "Bible Belt." For entertainment and humor I listen to religious right radio stations like the Bott Network. Although many of the "non" political programs allege not to have an anti-Democratic agenda, the Republican talking points come through loud and clear (successful Rove efforts(?)). The urgency to take back America for their Christian values is also readily apparent.

The black square "W, The Presidency" bumper stickers have become ubiquitous when I drive through the Brentwood and Franklin areas. However, around the Vanderbilt University it is just the opposite. The obvious reality is that Vanderbilt is an island in a sea.

Posted by: flashmind | September 7, 2006 9:52 AM | Report abuse

All you have to do is listen to limbaugh for about 5 minutes [if you can stomach it] and you will know everything posters like bhoomes and zouk will ever say -- or think.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 7, 2006 9:44 AM | Report abuse

"Bush made me a Democrat" is about the most meaningful part of any post I see here this morning.

Can anyone doubt that this simple statement is the real story in this election cycle? Anyone naive enough to suggest that Bush isn't running this time around is silly, at best and dangerously misinformed, the referendum on Bush puts him as a shadow candidate in every race on the map. ANd pointing out Bush's constant failure(s) is a very contemporary matter, it not like dredging up Bill Clinton and rewriting history to make him responsible for Bush failures.

This Bush stuff is happening right now, today, you can't change the truth no matter how you try to spin it.

This election is about Bush, too, along with everything else, and calling us "Bush bashers" is just a knee-slapper, a LOL moment. Thanks for the moment of levity in this otherwise all-too-heavy world.

Just by moving those captors and revising their treatment, Bush has basically confessed to his own and Rummy's and Cheney's international lawlessness, just like he confessed to the same lawlessness in admitting the NSA wiretaps. And with poodle Balair facing ejection from the British seat of political power very soon, it would seem the whoile house of cards that misled us to war may be unraveling well before election time.

The fact that bhoomes and his fellow forgetfuls can so cavalierly disregard the daily history itself proves we aren't engaged with serious political debators, these trolls are just part of the ignorant conservative masses, yearning hopelessly to be one of the real "neocons."

Probably the most pitiful part of this whole Bush story is how many otherwise good folks have lost their own way, morally, spiritually and politically,in order to defend the neocon lies that were perpetrated on the public to get us into the war in Iraq.

Now, instead of contrition and repentence, these old, ignorant warhorses slog through the mud of this raging flood, struggling blindly towards ever deeper and more dangerous waters.

It is one thing to be wrong about trusting someone who proves they are untrustworthy. It is another thing to perpetuate that trust out of ideological intractability or sheer, unmitigated ego.

Unfortunately, the Bush administration has only these Dinos and Rinos left to support them. Anyone with a spark of Spirit or an inkling of intelligence has long ago abandoned defending these rogues.

It seems almost offensive to intelligent debators and serious bloggers looking for the truth hiding in the media subterfuge, when people like bhoomes and K o'Z camp out and post their ignorance as if it is wisdom, nver breaking their neocon wannabe stride no matter how off-course they are in the race.. But we all know better by now, and I have decided to no longer engage them personally, until one of them actually has a argument worth disputing.

As yet, I have not read one single argument that wasn't a tired old Turdblossom talking point that has been discarded by the Republican Party itself long ago.

The Republicans admit it every time they lay out their agenda for this election; this election is about FEAR.

My only real fear is that, if their poll numbers don't turn upwards soon, the neocon leadership of the Republican Party will do whatever it takes to foment that fear, right up to the point of enabling some shady group of bumbling terrorists to attack us again.

Whether through complicity or negligence, they HAVE done it before. Either way, they have failed the American Public, and need to be replaced, before they can do it again.

Posted by: JEP | September 7, 2006 9:42 AM | Report abuse

How the strategy has changed... watch for it:

There was a time when the White House considered Osama bin Laden so contemptible and so radioactive that it would rarely mention his name in any presidential speech. President Bush's aides didn't want to dignify the Al Qaeda leader by suggesting he was worthy of a presidential response. Moreover, they thought there was some danger in propagating the views of a figure who wanted to reach the widest audience--and possibly even send coded messages to his followers.

So when bin Laden released a tape late in the last election--in October 2004--the White House handled it delicately. In the final days of the closely fought campaign, Bush's aides preferred to focus not on bin Laden but on how John Kerry was handling the tape. Bush challenged Kerry for what he called "Monday-morning quarterbacking" on the war in Iraq, saying his criticism was "especially shameful in the light of a new tape from America's enemy."

Even earlier this year, after another audiotape from bin Laden, the White House dismissed the Al Qaeda leader's words as irrelevant. When bin Laden offered a truce to the United States, White House Press Secretary Scott McClellan said simply, "We do not negotiate with terrorists."

That was the old rhetoric of the war on terror. In the latest version of the war of words, the White House has elevated bin Laden to a mixture of foreign leader, historical icon and political adversary. Bin Laden's words (and those of his henchmen) provided the backbone for Bush's speech to military officers Tuesday. Far from brushing aside bin Laden's rants, Bush insisted they were a modern-day "Mein Kampf," a guide to Al Qaeda's global strategy. The White House now finds itself in the extraordinary position of selling the war on terror by citing the very man it ranks as public enemy No. 1

...And remember how a couple of years ago, Bush said he 'never thought' about bin Ladin because he 'just wasn't that important'.. becuase it was all about the evil Saddam, you remember Saddam, who was 'just like Hitler'.. you never hear anything about him now, do you? Now it's bin Ladin that's 'like Hitler'...

Funny thing about that. I'm sure that when the time comes for them to be demonzed, Abejounad, or whatever the Iranian president is called will be 'just like Hitler' and I'm sure Hugo Chavez has already been called 'just like Hitler' and I'm sure as we approach the election, references to the evilness of bin Ladin will increase -- yet there will still be no effort to stop him.

Let me remind you that this week, the ally that we've been providing nuclear technology to for 5 years --Pakistan -- has signed a peace treaty with bin Ladin and the Taliban.

Happy now, wingnuts? Feel safer yet?

Posted by: drindl | September 7, 2006 9:26 AM | Report abuse

Of course GW is doing exactly what you expected. He's a one-trick pony -- a narrow, unintelligent, simple man, incapable of original thought, incapble of any response to life but to strike out, angrily, childishly. That's all he's ever done, why would we expect anything different now?

He's as emotionallly shallow as his parents, who instead of having a funeral when their little girl died of leukemia, played golf that day instead. No wonder's he's monstrougly callous and inhuman. It runs in the family.

In any case, Karl Rove announced last year what the republican strategy would be -- what it alwlays is -- fear. Fear, fear, and more fear.

Scare the bedwetters with boogeymen and then reassure their feeble little minds with phony blustering tough talk. It's worked for every dictatorial regime in history.

Posted by: drindl | September 7, 2006 9:15 AM | Report abuse

I listened to the talk GW had to the selected folks there at the White House and can see he is doing exactly what I've been saying he would do. Like the old saying goes "you can fool some people, etc..". How this change for "reasons" is not playing well to the folks I talk to. A few of you seem to have had the same feedback as I have.

Posted by: lylepink | September 7, 2006 9:01 AM | Report abuse

We did sell the ports to Dubai. You just didn't hear about it. After all the fuss, the deal quietly went through. More than half the ports in this country are now being run by foreign entities, with at least 22 run by Dubai alone, and there is absolutely zero oversight by this tired crew of republican thieves in Congress. What do they care, as long as they are getting their millions from lobbyists?

Posted by: louisa | September 7, 2006 8:55 AM | Report abuse

Oops! I forgot to mention how lucky the Katrina victims after a year of broken promises. And Terry Schiavo was really lucky when Bush rode to her rescue.

I'm probably omitting other important examples of how lucky we are to have this Great Leader in office. Are there others?

Posted by: mwb970 | September 7, 2006 8:54 AM | Report abuse

bhoomes,

You are wrong. I was in the military for all of the Carter administration. I was actually dealing with budgets and the FYDP (the Five Year Defense Plan, now referred to as Future Years Defense Plan). The increase did definitely start with Carter. FY 80, in particular, saw big increases. FY 81 also had increases, which had been enacted before Reagan was inaugurated. The fiscal years start on October 1. FY 81 started on October 1, 1980, Reagan was inaugurated January 20, 1981. Reagan increased it even more. However, a great deal of the additional funds poured in could not be spent rationally. The really major increases came in the procurement accounts. Having spent time as financial manager for a major acquisition program, I can tell you that it takes time to ramp up these programs. We were straining the industrial capacity in many areas. Now, the increases in the operations and personnel accounts were a different story. That funding could be put to effective use immediately. Carter was an ineffective leader - I would never deny that and did not vote for him. But, the defense build-up started while he was president. I was there dealing with the numbers.

Posted by: JimD in FL | September 7, 2006 8:54 AM | Report abuse

"We are lucky to have Bush in office, and so far, I am pleased with him and most of the Republicans in Congress."

This foolish remark is in a post somewhere up the page, and brings up a point that is fascinating to me: given Bush's manifest failures, not just in his presidency but throughout his life, how can people still say we are "lucky" to have him in office? What can this benighted person possibly think he means?

Is it "lucky" that we are stuck in Iraq for no reason? Apparently so. And the luck just continues on and on: Osama not captured and still threatening, record drug crop fueling Taliban resurgence in Afghanistan, staggering levels of national debt, illegal wiretapping of Americans, tax giveaways to profitable oil companies, decreasing wages for working people, increasing poverty, America hated around the world, our enemies united and our friends divided. What luck!

We sure are lucky that our chemical plants are unregulated and vulnerable - same with our nuclear plants. And we are incredibly lucky that, as we throw our shampoo in a bin at the airport, the cargo in the hold has not been inspected. Luckily, we don't inspect the containers coming into our national ports either (the ports that the president wanted to sell to Dubai).

And yet our deluded poster says we are lucky to have Bush in office and that he is pleased with the president and with Congress. Please. How much more "luck" like this can America stand?

Posted by: mwb970 | September 7, 2006 8:43 AM | Report abuse

The extremist elements have been part of the Republican party for many years, but it was just in the 90's that these elements took over the party. While the Republican party 50 years ago was the party of McCarthy, it was also the party of Eisenhower, who much much more representative of the views of most Republicans.

Reagan sometimes talked a tough talk, but he was leagues apart from GWB. Reagan was actually able to compromise, both with the Soviets (see his work with Gorbachev towards meaningful missle reductions) and with Democrats (see the landmark 1986 tax legislation, Social Security reform). In short, Reagan was able to work with people on the other side. And he did so by appealing to the hopes of Americans. GWB on the other hand has absolutely no ability to compromise, even with moderates in his own party, and so the legislative record of late has been absolutely pathetic. When was the last meaningful law passed? I can't even remember. And Bush has done so, not by playing to hope, but by appealing to fear.

For a president, the style is important (not as important as substance, but still important) as it sets the tone for debate in the country. The current tone is so dark and hateful that I am afraid what this country will look like in the near future if meaningful change does not happen now.

Posted by: Zathras | September 7, 2006 8:36 AM | Report abuse

'Once people figure out the lunatic left want to regulate us to death, corrupt our youth and redistribute our weath to those who are just plain lazy'

--I guess you mean like George Bush, the born rich, silver-spoon cokehead fratboy who's failed everything he's ever tried?

Posted by: Anonymous | September 7, 2006 8:30 AM | Report abuse

I'll add to my previous post that Bush and his cohort of psychotics ought to take a leaf out of the Israeli Handbook of Democracy. Three weeks after tthe cease - fire with the Hezbollah, the Defense Ministry has heeded the calls of angry Israelis and ordered an investigation into the conduct of the war.

Let me note for the record that many of these angry Israelis are reservists who just served in the latest round of hostility. Google it, Bush - enablers!

Posted by: Anonymous | September 7, 2006 8:11 AM | Report abuse

Sure enough, my post did not appear. Let's try again.

Bhoomes is a representative of the whiny, right-wing, lunatic fringe, that still supports the Cheney/Bush Organized Crime Society. Why he and his ilk feel the need to rant and rave all over the blogs is a mistery given the fact that the GOP has had total control of the WH, Congress, and a large chunk of the Judiciary for the past six years. One must conclude that Bhoomes is another one of these crassly ignorant, vastly insecure, pathologically angry, creatures who aspire to a dictatorship in the U.S.

As for the voters, they are indeed mad as hell. Calling a majority of the voters "Nazi appeasers" and "slavery supporters" is not the way to gain votes. Going on a full-blown campaign to scare people will not work either. Bush and his cohorts can scream "terrorism" all they want. The people's response is: "What are you doing about it? Where is Osama Bin Laden?" Five years later, and all the terrorist arrests and the foiled plots have taken place in other countries: the U.K., Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Morocco, and Denmark. Of course, in those countries, governments use good old intelligence and law enforcement to fight terrorism. Under our All Hat No Cattle Presidency, the U.S. swaggers and invades countries that have nothing to do with 9/11.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 7, 2006 8:05 AM | Report abuse

I see that, suddenly, "comments are held for approval by the blog owner". In other words, Chris is now censoring comments. I bet that only comments from right - wingers and fence - sitters will henceforth be allowed to be published.

The U.S.A. is the land of freedom, indeed!

Posted by: Anonymous | September 7, 2006 7:54 AM | Report abuse

Looking at the comments above, I think there is at least some qualitative evidence that the country has moved from center-right to center-center. The decline in Republican party identification (6 or 7%) and increase in Independent identification provides opportunity for Democrats to be listened to in 2006 and perhaps make the sale in 2008.

I find that I am as heartened by moderates who are enraged about abuses of the constitution and the abuse of fear and name-calling as I am by Democrats who are daring to dream again about a positive future. I enjoyed the moniker that "original thought hurts my brain," I think there is a real opportunity for political masochists out there who view the current drift toward reallignment as opportunity to use a word that sets off right-wing ideologues-- an opportunity to "tax" our brains.

I think a major part of this is to challenge the "top-down" political manipulation best characterized by Rove and Co., and reclaim an earlier bottom-up progressive, populist tradition that helped to spawn the ideas of an earlier Progressive Era and New Deal. The internet has the opportunity to recreate some of the ferment that generated ideas from below, but I think that the "sale" cannot be completed until we have more opportunities for national service and forums for local democracy (say local sustainable development forums given the need for jointly confronting climate change and economic globalization. The slogan, "Think Globally, Act Locally" never seemed so apt or so politically opportune.

I hope, as seems feasible, that a Democratic victory of the House in 2006 is seen as only a step in rebuilding the party, rather than an end in itself. Like an athlete training for competition, I hope it encourages folks as citizens (not just professional politicians and consultants) to do more intellectual heavy-lifting (even if as "original thought hurts my brain" it ends up giving the practitioners of this new politics not of fear, but reason and vision an occasional headache).

Posted by: Jeff-for-progress | September 7, 2006 5:58 AM | Report abuse

Nor'Easter: You must be a lot younger than me and got a whole of some revisionist history book but I was there, in the military under Carter, I can tell you for a fact, we didn't even have enough money to refill our vehicles. There was no money for beans, bullets or pay raises for the military. We Reagan came to office, we recieved almost a 20% pay raise in just two years and there was money for just about anything we wanted. My friend, you are just plain wrong when you say Carter started the miitary buildup, there is plenty of evidence to prove you were wrong, just check it out. Reading your postings, I know you are a open minded person, so check it out and get back to me with a correction.

Posted by: bhoomes | September 7, 2006 5:29 AM | Report abuse

I'm not sure which is harder to believe - that comments like Dave S's are courtesy of a guy in a cubicle at a White House-contracted PR firm whose other duties include cameraman on the administration's fake news spots, or that a living human being could so completely have surgically replaced their brain with a Limbaugh-Coulter iPod Shuffle that just outputs random doubleplusgood Ministry of Truth soundbites to the nerves in their mouths and hands.

Posted by: bryan @ shotgunfreude.blogspot.com | September 6, 2006 11:59 PM | Report abuse

Fortunatly it looks like the republican will hang on. Once people figure out the lunatic left want to regulate us to death, corrupt our youth and redistribute our weath to those who are just plain lazy that should be the end of the whine from the dems.. oh I am sorry, they wouldn't be the dems if they werent whiners.
Thank God for GW!

Posted by: Dave S | September 6, 2006 11:56 PM | Report abuse

Zathras - Don't get taken in by the Reagan Revisionists. Reagan played to the crowd as well as any politician. He got down and dirty with the best of them in his own style. He didn't have to call names, he crafted images that catered to the biases.

The Shining City on the Hill and the America in The Morning bits sound good by themselves, but they were part of his stylr of classwarfare, pitting the have against the have nots; or implying the Democrats were weak on defense, even though Carter had already started the military re-building which Reagan continued and gets credit for.

That Shining City was balanced by the Welfare Queen bit, no matter how atypical she actually was.

Posted by: Nor'Easter | September 6, 2006 11:54 PM | Report abuse

Who's actually waging class warfare while casting blame elsewhere, as opposed to being blamed for it? The Bush-GOP Congress team has done more damage to the U.S. Gini coefficient than at any time since George III, thanks in large part to tax breaks overwhelmingly tilted to the highest incomes coupled with a deficit-fueled decline of the dollar and passing on the tax burden to the states with unfunded mandates, and in large part to this GOP crew's fervent practice of cronyist economics as opposed to actual free market capitalism - how many hundreds of billions of federal tax dollars have they doled out to their good buddies among the wealthiest few through sweetheart corporate welfare tax breaks, no-bid contracts, federal land natural resource extraction leases at pennies on the market value dollar, and federally legislated windfalls for big pharma (medicare part D) and wall street (privatized social security, they hope) - right down to the ludicrous tax avoidance / wealth transfer scam of Barbara Bush earmarking a "charitable donation" to be funneled to Neil Bush's Ignite software company by way of the Katrina (Slush) Fund.

That is the difference between the classically liberal free market economics of Adam Smith and of the U.S. laissez-faire conservative tradition, as opposed to the wealth-accumulation-by-government (i.e. central planning economics) of the current GOP, who have gone full circle in their economic philosophy back to what was considered "conservative" in Adam Smith's day - for the lion's share of economic rewards to be doled out by diktat to the nobles and the king's other buddies in the form of royally granted monopolies, import patents, and sinecures. Sound familiar?

The reality is, the economic policy that emerged from Clinton-Gore and a less extremist GOP Congress forced to work together was a thousand times more faithful to free market capitalism than the disastrous all-GOP Bush/extremist-Congress team has been.

Posted by: bryan @ shotgunfreude.blogspot.com | September 6, 2006 11:41 PM | Report abuse

"The Socialist party of Pelosi etal is too much to bear with their politics of envy and class warfare. What a disaster!"

Hard to think of how anything Pelosi could do would be worse than the current disaster. How many thousands of American lives need to be lost (to create an Islamic theocracy, no less) before the so-called "the politics of envy and class warfare" seems like a good thing? That kool-aid tastes good, don't it? Rush Limbaugh is really good at warping morality and twisting thought, isn't he?

Posted by: Judge C. Crater | September 6, 2006 11:13 PM | Report abuse

The bottom line is that the current administration and congress has proved to be totally inept in anything but partisan maneuvering and bickering.

Our best hope is for divided government control so neither side can screw things up badly.

Will vote against any incumbent regardless of party - even if I don't particularly like the other candidate - they couldn't be worse then what we have.

Posted by: R Dillon | September 6, 2006 10:50 PM | Report abuse

I personally believe both parties are nothing more than prostitutes.

That being said, The GOP wins the overall prize and should change its name to the "Grand Old Prositutues." I will give them credit if you are going to do it charge a lot for it, don't sell it cheap like the Dems!

Posted by: Dave Gosney | September 6, 2006 10:47 PM | Report abuse

I am a Republican who shall be voting straight Republican in November. I hate the war in Iraq........I hate the "War on Terror"...........I hate rising energy and insurance costs...........but the thought of The Socialist party of Pelosi etal is too much to bear with their politics of envy and class warfare. What a disaster!

Posted by: Phillip | September 6, 2006 10:43 PM | Report abuse

Heres another poll that'll piss off all those already pissed off:

How safe do you feel compared to five years ago?

More Safe 14%
Less Safe 39%
Same 46%

Also, by a four-to-one margin (48 percent to 12 percent), Americans think the war in Iraq has made the threat of terrorism against the United States worse rather than better.

Both the war in Iraq and the war in Afghanistan are viewed as having created breeding grounds for terrorists. Fifty-four percent say the wars have created more terrorists, while just 15 percent say they've eliminated terrorists.

There's also increased pessimism about the overall war on terrorism, with 21 percent -- the highest number ever -- saying the terrorists are winning.

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2006/09/06/opinion/polls/main1975940.shtml

And that's just the War on Terror. Bring in domestic issues and it's easy to see why the sea change is happening. I remarked to my father the other day that I dont even remember what honest government looks like. 2000 seems like a millienium ago.

Posted by: F&B | September 6, 2006 10:38 PM | Report abuse

NOV 7 PREDICTION:

Exit polls show Democrats winning.
Republicans mysteriously win.

Sorry, dems, but until you learn how to steal elections as effectively as Bush 'n Crew as done, you will continue to be losers.

They stole 2000, 2002, 2004, and they will steal 2006.

And they will get away with it, again.

The 'lectronic voting machine is the single biggest blessing to fall into republicscum hands, ever.

And that's aside from all the usual lying, cheating, sleazeball tactics they use every election.

This country is being run by unpatriotic, un-American criminals right now, all branches. Until that ends, the country can't even begin to heal from the damage repugnicans have caused.

Think. It's Patriotic.

Posted by: DC | September 6, 2006 10:38 PM | Report abuse

The fear tactics of the Republican party are so powerful that all but the most stable Independents will be able to see what's being done to them. Propaganda works !

Posted by: hihoward | September 6, 2006 10:36 PM | Report abuse

The gentlman above who states that he will vote Republican because he opposes "more federal government control" and spending is a victim of the republican controlled media. Where are his facts? Federal government control and spending has increased faster under these Republicans than the last time Democrats were in control in 93,94. If you think Bush stands for limited federal government control and spending with a conservative foreign policy, you've been had.

Posted by: David Schulz | September 6, 2006 10:33 PM | Report abuse

It is hardly "a certainty at this point" that the Republicans will lose seats.
It appears probable at this point, yes, but certain, no way.
Cillizza should stick to reporting, not prognosticating.
Anything can happen between now and Election Day and only an arrogant know-it-all journalist would say an election result is a "certainty" two months out from the vote.

Posted by: A. Nony Mouse | September 6, 2006 10:30 PM | Report abuse

A poll asking about how someone feels about generic Congressional Repubs and Dems is mildly interesting. The follow-up question I have not seen is how did those same individuals feel about their own representative? We have seen this in previous elections. People say Congress as a whole is bad, but their elected official is OK. Therefore, we end up with the group as we had before.

No matter how good the numbers supposedly look nationally for Dems, I am not holding my breath.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 6, 2006 10:30 PM | Report abuse

Straight Democrat ticket. Bush has nothing to run on except fear. Lies, half truths or delayed announcements about "high level" prisoners to garner votes. Our "ally" Pakistan now creats a safe haven the same day Bush says that will never happen. He is pedaling his mountain bike on a long downhill run and will crash very soon. Not soon enough for me.

Posted by: Quapaw12000 | September 6, 2006 10:23 PM | Report abuse

Correction regarding the previous post, Kerry in '04, Gore in '00.

Posted by: Adam | September 6, 2006 10:22 PM | Report abuse

I think that many people voted for Bush in '00 and '04 for the simple reason that Kerry looked worse. Having just spent the past year seeing him up-close in the Senate while working for a moderate R, I still hold to that opinion.

Mid-term elections are a different kind of animal that have a history of being less about choosing between two candidates and more about being simply anti-incumbent. With the exception of '02, the majority party has had a net loss in every mid-term for decades. Barring another major national security event (which is possible), the Republicans stand to lose seats based on abnormally high levels of voter dissatisfaction. The only variable is how effectively this dissatisfaction will translate into votes. Assuming for the sake of argument that the Rs and Ds have equal numbers of core constituents that are equally motivated to go to the polls, the independents will decide the winner. I suspect that they will be much less concerned with proactively choosing a future course of action than simply reacting to some really bad economic and social experiences of the past six years (rising costs of everything and lowering real wages).

Rs admit that there are 40 or so competitive House races on their side and only 10 or so competitive D races (see Fix's earlier posts), a simple 50-50 split gives the Ds the 15+ seats that they need to take over the House. I expect more than that given the abnormally high levels of voter dissatisfaction. The Senate will be a 52/48 or 51/49 split with some combination of Chaffee, Santorum, DeWine and Burns losing.

Posted by: Adam | September 6, 2006 10:18 PM | Report abuse

Impeach Bush. Torture Cheney.

Posted by: slangist | September 6, 2006 10:13 PM | Report abuse

"Why did the Republicans stop being Reagan's party of hope and start being Rove's party of hatred and fear? The fear-mongering has cast a dark shadow on American life, and only the most drastic political change can drive the Rovian beasts of fear back into the wilderness where they belong."

You're joking, right? The Republican Party has been using fear and hatred at least since the days of Joseph McCarthy and the Red scare of the 50s. When they finally lost the Reds to scapegoat, they turned to Willie Horton, gay marraige, flag burning...need I go on.

I just can't believe that there are so many who voted for Bush twice that didn't see through the RNC tactics in 2000 and 2004.

I really have difficulty believing that the Democrats will regain either house of Congress. The lessons of 2004 are still fresh. The Pubs told the Big Lie then, and they'll tell it again, and enough people will believe it to keep them in power. :^(

Posted by: Bierbelly | September 6, 2006 9:46 PM | Report abuse

When I first came to this country, I have high hopes. I firmly believed I would be living under the democratic principle stated by Abraham Lincoln,namely a government by the people, of the people, for the people, and under a constitution based upon separation of power/check & balance. Bush only believes in a admininstraion by the money,of the money for the money and rule by fear. This is no different than the old China KMT regime.

Posted by: john Y. Cheng | September 6, 2006 9:41 PM | Report abuse

Screw it. I'm not voting anymore - got no one to vote for except for democrats and republicans. No difference. Have fun!

Posted by: Idontcareanymore | September 6, 2006 9:31 PM | Report abuse

It's no surprise that 71% of America is "angry." While the article describes deep divisions (more than borne out by the comments), all those angry people are angry about the same thing: Government. That is the natural outcome when the candidates and politicians from both parties have been pandering to the citizens for decades. Americans have always had deep divisions on many issues, but in the past, ours was a limited government. Now, in the guise of doing something for us, the government has invaded every aspect of our being. Since everyone now expects the government to solve every little problem - just like they promised - we're all mad at it.

Posted by: R. Armstrong | September 6, 2006 9:28 PM | Report abuse

Well, here'smy thoughts:

Afghanistan - The amount of opium they're producing has increased to the point where they're supplying 130% of the worlds addicts "needs" and that money is going into the hands of the Taliban

Pakistan - They've offered Bin Ladin safe haven if he promises to behave

Iraq - Civil war and the PM says that if they've not gotten their act together in 3 months, they're goners...

Iran - thumbing it's nose at the US

N. Korea - ditto

Heckuva of a job that Bush and his boys havedone, eh?

Bush made me a Democrat

Posted by: Brent | September 6, 2006 8:49 PM | Report abuse

George Bush has taken only one oath since he took office, and that was the Presidential Oath of Office, which he took while his hand lay on the Bible:
"I do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States."

Notice that nowhere in that oath does he swear to tell the truth. When he refused to be sworn in before congress when he testified before the 9-11 Commission with Cheney, he justified this refusal to be sworn in by saying that he was already under oath- obviously implying that the oath he was refusing to take (to tell the truth) was somehow related to the Oath of Office (to defend the Constitution). Because he used a factual statement to intentionally mislead Congress and the public, he was telling a lie.

With his open defiance of Congress, U.S. law, international treaties signed by the U.S., and the Constitution itself, I do not see how it is possible for him to maintain that he has upheld this oath of office, unless he were to argue that he is incompetent, and therefore has no ability to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.

George Bush has obtained nearly everything he has in life, from his posessions to his influence, by leveraging the power and influence of the Bush family name- not through any skill or ability on his part. He has no natural ability to negotiate his way through anything except the clearest of courses, yet he believes himself to be nearly infallible in his judgement. Due to his priviledged upbringing, he has had no opportunities (and this is unfortunate for him) to truly test his abilities or judgement. As a result, he is clueless that he in fact has no abilities to carry him through these difficult times.

Bush is struggling with reconciling his beliefs that he is right, with the facts as they unfold around him. He can remain in denial for a long time, particularly if his judgement is especially bad. At some point, he may learn to recognize the feeling that all wise people have experienced- that when they are most angry about something and feel like lashing out and blaming others for the poor state of affairs, it begins to dawn on them that they are angry about their own culpability. I can only hope that Bush has enough wisdom that at some point, he'll understand that the damage that he has done to this great country goes against every good conservative principle that he's ever claimed to stand for.

Posted by: Sick of Bush and his Handlers | September 6, 2006 8:47 PM | Report abuse

Add another Republican to the list of defecting, appeasing, terrorist-enablers - I was suckered by Bush twice (although to my credit I voted McCain in the 2000 primary) and I won't be again. This year I'll be voting a straight Democratic ticket and praying that Virginia turns blue.

By the way, I would still self-identify as Republican - except that Republican party I belong to still has room for small-government libertarians.

Posted by: Pragmatist | September 6, 2006 8:36 PM | Report abuse

The most interesting statistic quoted here is that 71% of all Americans are angry at something. This figure has probably never been nearly as high as it is now. During World War II were people "angry?" Resolute, yes. Determined, yes. But angry? No.

This anger is solely the result of Republicans' spread of hatred through their spin machine. It wasn't enough to say that Democrats were wrong on the issues--it is that they hate America, or they hate the troops, or are just downright evil. This made many Republicans angry because it made everyone else look like they are destroying American life as we know it. It made Democrats angry because they were being slandered.

Why did the Republicans stop being Reagan's party of hope and start being Rove's party of hatred and fear? The fear-mongering has cast a dark shadow on American life, and only the most drastic political change can drive the Rovian beasts of fear back into the wilderness where they belong.

Posted by: Zathras | September 6, 2006 8:18 PM | Report abuse

When will we stop polling people and start helping people? Does anyone truly care anymore? We don't talk about the empathy, the feel of hopelessness, the lack of compitent workers as a result. We talk about who's got better ground to stand on: Republicans or Democrats? Personally, I wish we would recognize the overall disatisfaction Americans are feeling, no matter what they believe politically. Job wise, life wise, it seems as though all the cable television in the world can't keep the uncomfortable reality that there is little to hope for. I no longer want a poll of the better of two evils. I want statistics of just how many feel that we are being guided by a failing system that only works for the highest bidder.

Posted by: Tiana | September 6, 2006 7:52 PM | Report abuse

I am one of those who are far more enthusiastic to vote this year than in most previous elections - and while I voted almost straight-ticket Republican through the 2000 election, I have since re-registered as an independent and am now enthusiastic to vote for, and contribute to, Democratic candidates.

While I still value many of the stances Republicans traditionally espoused prior to 2000, the party under this administration has been hijacked into extremist policies bearing little resemblance to anything that attracted me to the GOP in the first place - like, say, a prudent fiscal policy, or wise and effective use of the military, or the overriding principle that government's primary job is to stay out of our business - all of which are now anathema to the Republicans in charge.

The way I see it, this is a single-issue campaign. The Republicans now in power have embraced, as their primary policy, an aggressive opposition to the Bill of Rights, to the separation of powers, to the rule of law - in short, to the Constitution that has been the foundation of America since its beginning. Their only political philosophy now is to fantasize that the Founding Fathers of America intended to create a presidency even more powerful than the office of king under George III - that they fought a war of revolution because they just couldn't bear being ruled by a chief executive who didn't hold enough arbitrary power over their lives.

While most Democrats have not had enough spine to take a stand on this, nevertheless the Democrats, simply by default, have become the party of *not* vigorously trying to tear down the American rule of law. That is the only issue for me. If that fails, we have nothing.

Even before learning a single thing about what the Democrats have to offer, I cannot imagine how any thinking person of whatever American political tradition could listen to a rhetoric that is founded on surrendering all competing interests to overriding fear, and equating the large majority of Americans who disagree with the administration's policies with Nazi appeasers, and boasting of secret CIA prisons as a campaign highlight to excite their base, and not feeling the overriding need to run them out of office.

And with a president who campaigns based on letting Osama bin Laden dictate our entire foreign policy, despite having said before the election four years ago that "I don't know where bin Laden is. I have no idea and really don't care. It's not that important. It's not our priority", and who has been unable to do anything about this one lousy guy despite having a military that has gone through a cumulative budget of over two trillion dollars since 9/11 and that has the cooperation of the governments of both Afghanistan and Pakistan, and who let a great American city be largely destroyed even with all the advance warning of a disaster that one might hope for, assuring disaster managers from his vacation hideaway that everything would be just fine -- it seems impossible that any thinking person might still be suckered into the GOP sales pitch that they are somehow a better option for national security, rather than be aghast at the breathtaking military incompetence of this administration, and desperate to return to the kind of administration that actually proved itself in Kosovo to be a master of military effectiveness with no U.S. fatalities and no degradation in military readiness or diplomatic standing -- the kind of administration that understands and responds to the reality-based world rather than just grand theories, grand photo-ops, and grand soundbites.

Posted by: bryan @ shotgunfreude.blogspot.com | September 6, 2006 7:51 PM | Report abuse

This is going to be a great election for the American people. Either the socialists win the House and use the next 2 years with bogus "investigations" on everything and show the country how USELESS they are or the socialists DON'T win the House and the resulting scare puts some backbone into the R's leadership and SOMETHING ACTUALLY GETS DONE!

Hopefully the socialists will continue their "campaign" against PRESIDENT BUSH. Someone should tell them he's not running for re-re-election.

Posted by: Fifty Cal | September 6, 2006 7:41 PM | Report abuse

Feel the Joementum!

Posted by: Greg in LA | September 6, 2006 7:25 PM | Report abuse

I am a dedicated Democrat, but I cannot see it happening that we will regain power. The one thing going for the Republicans is their cohesiveness and discipline; we, on the other hand, tend to pull in "n" competing directions, with no clear message. We also tend to be too polite, too apologetic and give in too easily to negative characterizations.
I expect the Republicans to do a very negative campaign, based on fear of terrorism, and I do not see (so far) any proper response from the Democrats to that.

Posted by: Cynical Dem | September 6, 2006 7:22 PM | Report abuse

What are these pollsters doing about voters with cell phones or caller ID?

Posted by: Curious | September 6, 2006 7:11 PM | Report abuse

I don't think it's politics anymore. It's voting for anyone but the incompetents and the ideologues. It's voting to get the country out of the perfect storm of government mismanagement and government by public relations. I've been following politcs since Kennedy, and I've never seen the country in such a godawful mess. Let's hope it's not too late.

Posted by: Zeebu | September 6, 2006 7:09 PM | Report abuse

Raised in red state west Texas, I'm calling myself a Bush democrat. He and his despicable crew have me holding my nose and casting straight democrat. The same applies to almost everyone I know. I think that the hijackers of the Republican party are toast.

Posted by: C. House | September 6, 2006 7:00 PM | Report abuse

Two months is an eternity in politics, folks. Moderates ARE motivated to go to the polls NOW. The Republicans will do everything they can to drive down turnout. They will lose seats, but the majority is still in question.

As to depressed Republicans, the turnout among Republicans in the Florida primary was 1.2M more than the Dems. Granted it was raining, but that was big difference.

Posted by: Zach | September 6, 2006 6:58 PM | Report abuse

One point I haven't yet seen made is that the independents are likely also intense about this election. And my guess is that they won't be going for the Republicans.

Posted by: Ted | September 6, 2006 6:53 PM | Report abuse

I'm afraid that if the Dems do take over congress, that the mess we are in will take longer that the two years for the general election. Voters expect a miracle and I can't see that happening. The Dems will be vote out then because they didn't solve all the problems. I will vote democratic as I have for 65 years.

Posted by: donwilly17 | September 6, 2006 6:51 PM | Report abuse

This is one Republican that will vote for anyone but the incumbant this year. Why should I vote for anyone in office now. Gas prices have doubled, insurance rates have doubled, housing costs have doubled and no one in office cares. The incumbants chant of Terror,Terror,Terror has gotten old..

Posted by: Dirk Redson | September 6, 2006 6:40 PM | Report abuse

i read your articles and see you on hardball as well,you do a good job on covering the campaigns.thank you

Posted by: kent jay | September 6, 2006 6:37 PM | Report abuse

"One element of the CNN survey that Republicans are likely to take as a positive sign is that both sides appear to be more enthusiastic to vote in 2006 than in previous elections."

I know many Republicans that are enthusiastic about the vote this year, and it is NOT because they intend to vote for Republican incumbants.

For economic conservatives, it shouldn't be regarded as a given that their enthusiam will be translated into votes for Republican incumbants. They're mad too, and their anger isn't directed at the powerless Democrats.

Posted by: Todd Scott - Minnesota | September 6, 2006 6:25 PM | Report abuse

You can present the delusional people with indisputible facts, and they will react in 3 ways --ignore, call you a conspiracy theorist, or call you names. It just ain't worth the energy -- they're hopeless.

By the way, to correct the record of one delusional poster, the most dangerous country in the world today is not Iraq or Iran. It's Pakistan, who has just signed a peace treaty with al Queda and the Taliban. Pakistan, who now has a huge nuclear arsenal paid for by you and me.

Posted by: drindl | September 6, 2006 6:25 PM | Report abuse

I cannot by any stretch of the imagination picture thanking god for George Bush. And what "independent" refers to as "steadfast leadership and patriotism" i would characterize instead as as stubborn refusal to adapt to changing conditions coupled with the cynical manipulation of others, in order to advance one's own goals. This man and this administration are the least competetent and least trustworthy of any I can think of, going all the way back to the 1st George (Washington.)

Posted by: meuphys | September 6, 2006 6:15 PM | Report abuse

What is the world would the media do without anger? They can't sell newspapers without anger, but they must think only angry people vote too. I might not like each and every item passed by the Republicans but I don't really have any choice, do I? What do they offer except more fascist ideas which require more federal control and more federal funds to finance. We are unlucky to have Bush in office, and so far, I am pleased with all the Republicans going to prison. Now if people want to send Democrats to Congress to block the President, I can't stop them. But I am happy when the media accurately thinks every problem was started by the party that controls all three branches of government. I vote in support, I vote for leadership, and I vote for Democrats.

Posted by: Original thought hurts my brain | September 6, 2006 6:12 PM | Report abuse

Republicans = 3 x I
Inept, Indifferent, indefensible!!!

Posted by: debra altman | September 6, 2006 6:08 PM | Report abuse

It's unfortunate that both parties cannot understand the threat that we Americans and the rest of the free world are facing. Thank God for Nancy Pelosi and the Democratic party for their steadfast leadership and patriotism!

Posted by: Original thought hurts my brain | September 6, 2006 6:04 PM | Report abuse

'Independent' seems to having a delusional episode. Hallucinating like crazy. Someone rush him his meds!

Posted by: drindl | September 6, 2006 6:04 PM | Report abuse

It's unfortunate that both parties cannot understand the threat that we Americans and the rest of the free world are facing. Thank God for President George Bush and the Republican party for their steadfast leadership and patriotism!

Posted by: Independent | September 6, 2006 5:59 PM | Report abuse

Hey it almost worked in the middle of election day in FL in 2000. call the election now for Dems and we can all just stay home. Kerry won the exit polls but....Al Gore won the popular vote but....

Try this - Dems and Repubs are both hated by the citizens but since there's more Rs...but....
the wave you were trying to build has already crashed into reality and soon everyone will be onto the slight of hand. Prediction: Senate lose 3 seats, house lose 11 seats. No reason to have an election right?

Joel, I got a chuckle out of your prose. you may have a career in professional wrestling management.

Posted by: kingofzouk | September 6, 2006 5:54 PM | Report abuse

I used to be a Republican, and now, thanks to Bush, Rove, the Swift Boaters, Frist, and the rest of the GOP bunch, I am a registered and committed, left-leaning Independent. It is clear to me that the Republicans will raise any fear, tell any lie, smear any dissenters, to force their religous and political views on the United States and the rest of the world. The last email I sent to the White House used the word "despicable" to describe trying to link Islam to the fascist movement, and also trying to label those of us who think and oppose the illegal war in Iraq as morally confused. It's Bush and company who are immoral, and un-American.

Posted by: Bill H | September 6, 2006 5:50 PM | Report abuse

bhoomes,

Perhaps you would be more convincing if you argued a case based on the merits and introduced some sort of facts relevant to this election. This isn't redstate.org or the dailykos. Please try to talk shop in a constructive, useful way rather than just blabbing for the base. If you see data suggesting that the GOP will do well, then please introduce it and explain it. If the fact that a particular party won the last election dictated that they will win the next then we would still be watching the Federalists and the Republican Democrats battle it out on Capital Hill.

Posted by: Jackson Landers | September 6, 2006 5:40 PM | Report abuse

Yo - all religeo-facist talking heads, republican lobbiests, political leeches, and the MSM.... Now would be a good time to book a long vacation for the holidays.

THE MODERATES ARE COMING TO SLAY YOU IN THE CLEAR NOVEMBER MORNING!

Politically speaking, of course. You'll just be out of a job... but I'm sure a slot might be open for you in, say, dubious TV vitamin sales.

Posted by: Joel E. | September 6, 2006 5:40 PM | Report abuse

While I will vote Democrat, I hope they will take steps to reverse income inequality, work to strengthen unions, work to provide health care for all and stop corporate America and the Republicans from continuing to turn our country into a gated community for some and a low-income nightmare for everyone else.

Posted by: MB | September 6, 2006 5:39 PM | Report abuse

I would like to see the numbers on how the independent voters feel. I would be willing to bet they are gonna come out in droves in Novemeber. We might see record turnouts for a midterm election this time around. That is a good sign for Democrats.

Also Mike and Jack, I am hearing the same things from Republicans that I am freinds with as well. This election might show that Bush is the anti-Reagan in the way he is driving people towards the Democratic party.

Posted by: Andy R | September 6, 2006 5:08 PM | Report abuse

RE BHoomes's comment--
The data discussed in the Fix's column actually rebuts your assertion that the media is trying to demoralize Republicans (nice try though, as you guys do a great job of painting yourselves as the
picked-on, put-down minority even though Republicans control the White House, the Senate, the House of Representatives, the U.S. Supreme Court, and most of corporate America, including your favorite bete noir the so-called mainstream media.
The Fix is actually cutting your side a break-- his data shows that Republicans are almost as energized as Democrats to go to the polls in November. The only point missing from his otherwise excellent analysis is that the number of Americans who self identify as Republicans has fallen by nearly six percent since the 2004 election, suggesting that the public isn't buying what the Republicans are selling.

Posted by: Skye | September 6, 2006 5:03 PM | Report abuse

I'm a life-long Republican and I've had it with the "Nazi" this and "Appeaser" that. This election, even if I have to bit my tongue, I'm voting Democrat. I'm ashamed of what Bush has done to America and the lengths to which he will go to keep his power. What sort of people are leading our nation that they feel it's okay to call citizens who disagree about the war "Appeasers?" I've had it!

Posted by: Jack Wroughter | September 6, 2006 5:02 PM | Report abuse

What is the world would the media do without anger? They can't sell newspapers without anger, but they must think only angry people vote too. I might not like each and every item passed by the Republicans but I am not voting for Democrats, either. What do they offer except more socialist ideas which require more federal control and more federal funds to finance. We are lucky to have Bush in office, and so far, I am pleased with him and most of the Republicans in Congress. Now if people want to send Democrats to Congress to block the President, I can't stop them. But I am angry when the media thinks every problem was started by the President or by Republicans. I vote in support, I vote for leadership, and I vote for Republicans.

Posted by: You Need Anger | September 6, 2006 4:57 PM | Report abuse

I don't see the information on the partisan breakdown for this poll. It is possible that a change in voter sentiment will be reflected by voters who previously called themselves republicans now identifying themselves as independent. Since the independent voters determine most elections anyway, I'm not sure that the enthusiasm of democrats or republicans is as relevant as you might think.

Posted by: Ozzie | September 6, 2006 4:57 PM | Report abuse

I can relate one personal observation. I have never really been much involved in politics prior to Bush. Right now, I will do whatever it takes, spend any amount of money, knock on however many doors, to be rid of his influence. And, not just me. My 84 year old father only voted for one Democrat in his entire life - Harry Truman - and he is completely fed up with Bush and the Republican Party in general and intends to plug his nose and vote a straight Democratic ticket. Actually, the whole of my family feels this way since my younger son was sent to Iraq (he was recruited and joined as a nurse...the Army made him a combat medic where he serves doing street patrols - real use of talent on the part of the Army; take a trained trama nurse and premed student and stick them on the front lines). Now, my family has all been reliable Republican voters (so was I - right up until about March of 2000). Now, you can count on roughly 80 votes going from the Republican Party to Democrats...NO MATTER HOW BAD THE DEMOCRAT IS PERCEIVED TO BE! People just detest Bush. Just imagine my family multiplied by tens of thousands of families all over the country and you can pretty much figure Republican's that people think of as safe right now are going to be out on their ear come November. I'm hoping for a historic change that will see the Republican's loosing across the board, something that is so awful that the entire world will look upon Bush as some sort of plague carrier and treat him like the leper he is.

Posted by: MikeB | September 6, 2006 4:55 PM | Report abuse

Revenge of the moderate middle.

It takes some to get them mobilized. But when the move, it is like laying next to an elephant when it rolls over.

Posted by: everyman | September 6, 2006 4:49 PM | Report abuse

Of course I do not want to be to hard on you. This is the only time you fantazise about actually winning an election. Kinda like the Texans or Browns thinking they can really win the Super Bowl. Sounds good until they have to play the game.

Posted by: bhoomes | September 6, 2006 4:38 PM | Report abuse

Chris, are these the same polls that had Kerry winning on election day. I have seen where so called political experts telling us the republican base is demoralized and will not turn out this Nov. The only thing I have seen is the mainstream media trying to convince the american public the republicans are in trouble. Maybe, but I will vote for Dewine on election day just in case you guys are wrong again.

Posted by: bhoomes | September 6, 2006 4:29 PM | Report abuse

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