In_the_pools

Fascinating couple of data points on some recent polling on the President, Congress and the political parties:

"In the Journal/NBC poll, approval of Mr. Bush’s job performance inched up to 39% from 37% last month, but a 56% majority disapproves of the president’s job performance. Congress fares even worse, with 25% approval and 60% disapproval. The telephone survey of 1,010 adults, conducted July 21 to 24, has a margin for error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.

More threatening to Congress’s Republican majority is the public’s desire for a change in direction. By 48% to 38%, voters say they prefer that Democrats win control of Congress this fall; by identical proportions, voters say it is time to "give a new person a chance" in Congress. By 38% to 21%, they say their vote will register opposition to Mr. Bush rather than support.

Underlying those sentiments is a public mood that Mr. Hart labels "as…depressing as I can remember" in more than three decades of polling. By 60% to 27%, Americans say their nation is headed "off on the wrong track" rather than "in the right direction."

John Harwood says both Republicans and Democrats received low approval ratings in the latest Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll.That stems largely from the Iraq war. Amid sectarian violence that in recent days has caused American and Iraqi officials to shift security strategy, 58% of Americans call themselves "less confident" that the war will end successfully; 32% say they are "more confident." Though Americans say stabilizing Iraq should be Mr. Bush’s top foreign-policy priority, just 34% approve of his handling of the matter.

Approval of Mr. Bush’s handling of the economy edged up to 41%
from 38% in June. Yet by 38% to 14%, Americans expect the economy to get worse
rather than better in the next year; 45% say it will stay the same. More than
seven in 10 Americans across all income groups say they are "uneasy" about the
economy, with 65% predicting "life for our children’s generation" won’t be
better than today."

Interesting take on the public sentiment.

Poll_20060726201313

Fascinating stuff . . .

>

Source:
Both Parties Post Low Approval Ratings in Poll
Iraq, Economy Top Worries As Public Disenchantment With Lawmakers Persists
JOHN HARWOOD
July 27, 2006; Page A4
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB115394837951418255.html

Category: Politics

Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.

50 Responses to “WSJ/NBC Poll”

  1. DH says:

    Underlying those sentiments is a public mood that Mr. Hart labels “as…depressing as I can remember” in more than three decades of polling. By 60% to 27%, Americans say their nation is headed “off on the wrong track” rather than “in the right direction.”

    I hate this question. I voted for Bush, but I would be lumped in with the 60% who think the nation is headed in the wrong direction. Not that I regret my vote at all (Kerry should have been hanged in 1971 for treason for his trip to Paris), but the right/wrong track doesn’t measure accurately my sentiment that President Bush and Congress aren’t conservative enough in their policies.

  2. howard says:

    yeah, really, DH, that’s what i call real conservatism: hanging john kerry for being correct about the war in vietnam. pathetic.

    as a serious matter, if you look at presidential approval by party affiliation, you’ll discover that the “he’s not conservative enough” critique in the sense you mean it (as opposed to the sense that bill buckley meant it a couple of days ago) is a very small body of opinion: otherwise, there’d be a lot more republicans bailing on bush.

    meanwhile, barry, this is how people feel with a still-strong housing market, adequately good economic growth, and dow 11,000: imagine if (when) those go south….

  3. ML says:

    I just hope the net result of dissention on the Iraq issue does not lead to more douche bags like the councilman from Chicago that was on Kudlow tonight. The last thing we need is move towards socialism and retarded economic policy.

  4. eightnine2718281828mu5 says:


    The last thing we need is move towards socialism

    Socialism? You mean government operating to maximize the public good?

    And doesn’t the military provide a service in pursuit of the public good? Courts too, it would seem.

    Which makes the military and court system socialist, I guess. And any party that supports the military and courts would be socialist as well.

  5. ML says:

    How do you equate justice and defense with socialism? No one would argue that a capitalist system requires the rule of law and freedom.

    No, socialism is the Chicago City Council mandating a minimum wage that is almost double the national statute for a handful of employers. Chicago politicians obviously do not believe in free markets. They believe in mama government, economic stagnation, and high unemployment.

  6. eightnine2718281828mu5 says:


    How do you equate justice and defense with socialism?

    Conservatives have this habit of labeling anything they don’t want the government to do ‘socialist’.

    Maybe you could provide your favorite definition of socialist so I know what you mean.

  7. 23 says:

    I’m eager to see how the Chicago big box law works out. One official in favor of it said it would not keep the stores out of the city because those stores are saturated in most markets and they need to enter urban markets to keep growing (as wall st demands). Interesting take.

    Of course, the incremental pay that floor workers will get could easily be offset if top execs weren’t payed so excessively. Damn “mama directors”.

    Regardless, Chicago just did what should be done at the federal level: increase the minimum wage.

    http://www.rollingstone.com/nationalaffairs/?p=361

  8. Richard says:

    our government is a corrupt group of cronyists all feeding off the big business trough that feeds them. they’re long ago stopped supporting the citizens of this country in favor of power and one upsmanship. sad indeed.

  9. noname says:

    hmm. Speaking out against an unpopular war — treason, punishable by hanging. Outing an active CIA officer — the pinnicle of patriotism, I presume? worthy of the Presidential Medal of Freedom? Gosh, this compassionate conservatism thing is really tough to swallow.

  10. Jim Bergsten says:

    I know, Barry, that you heart is in the right place but just for the record:

    There’s no point in preaching to the choir. The choir may be too polite to complain, but they don’t like it — the just want to sing, get a few mild compliments, go home and watch the game.

    People who care enough to not hang up on pollsters are unhappy with (yawn) the President and (yawn) Congress, and (yawn) the “war.” More (yawn) than (yawn) ever. Out with the old bastards, (yawn) in with (yawn) the new bastards.

    Yawn. If typing “(yawn)” wasn’t so strenuous, I’d be asleep by now.

    Don’t care. Wake me when I can sell my TIE way deep in the money way out there calls for a huge profit.

    “Chicago big box law”?
    Jim B.

  11. Craig H says:

    What we should be focusing on is how these sentiment polls could affect Wall St. which does not want to see the Democrats take back the house.

  12. DH says:

    Speaking out against an unpopular war

    Ok noname, that’s what I said, and not for his meeting with the enemy in Paris …..{/sarcasm}

    Link for those who don’t want to Google it for themselves

  13. ML says:

    Dems in office = Higher minimum wage, roll back of cap gains and dividend tax cuts and increase in income taxes for higher wage earners. Regardless of affiliation, someone try to explain to me how these mechanisms are good for business.

    I can’t remember if I saw this quote on this board or not, but it bears repeating. The story is of a blue collar worker making a very modest living. Asked if he was in favor of higher taxes on the wealthy, he responded: “Hell no.” Why not he was asked. “Because no poor man has ever offered me a job.”

  14. Jon H says:

    ML writes: “No one would argue that a capitalist system requires the rule of law and freedom.”

    The Chinese would. They’ve demonstrated that you can have a booming capitalist system in which you’re only as free as the government says you can be, and the rule of law is decidedly shaky.

    I frankly think the US is headed in that direction.

  15. Jon H says:

    “you think things are bad now, God forbid if the Dems/sh!tfux win the house in November.”

    Yeah, god forbid we ditch the imbecile-in-chief and go back to the sensible policies, booming business environment, good economy, and budget surpluses of the 90s. God, that sucked.

  16. eightnine2718281828mu5 says:


    “Because no poor man has ever offered me a job.”

    You know those government guys who collect the taxes?

    They *hire* people. Lots of ‘em during the Bush II administration.

    Check the BLS stats some time.

  17. I guess I should have known better than to post something political only 4 months before a mid-term election . . .

    As to the markets, historically, the best returns are out of divided government (Pres/Congress) Reagan/Dems, Clinton/GOP, Eisenhower/Dems

    Centrist policies with Paygo is ideal for markets

  18. eightnine2718281828mu5 says:


    Those were phony numbers were the LUs/ENEs/WCOMs…and it led to 23 straight months of over 400,000 in the unemployment lines.

    If Bush had those numbers you guys would have his face on the dollar bill and Mt. Rushmore.

    The slow ramp up from recession was exacerbated by Bush’s stimulus program which was built on the notion of cash for the top .1% and cheap debt for everyone else.

    And that debt overhang is going to make the Bush recession much longer and more painful than the last one.

  19. brion says:

    does “65% predicting “life for our children’s generation” won’t be better than today.” strike anyone else as a ghoulish kind of schadenfruede?
    How many of those folks voted for the s.o.b.?
    And, yes, any withering of our kids prospects are DIRECTLY tied to the econ policies of this heckuvajob administration…..

  20. eightnine2718281828mu5 says:


    I guess I should have known better than to post something political only 4 months before a mid-term election . . .

    Yeah, you naively thought that just providing the data with no personal comment would allow you to escape a flame war.

    You must be new to the internets thing.

  21. eightnine2718281828mu5 says:


    “65% predicting “life for our children’s generation” won’t be better than today.”

    Bush has a plan for that; make ‘today’ so hellish that there’s nowhere to go but up.

  22. ken says:

    Conservative slogans never balanced a budget.

    It takes taxes to run a government, and it takes honest patriotism to realise this.

    Today those in power, the codpiece conservatives, the chickenhawks, and those who support them, the fighting keyboarders and the wingnutteries rhetorical warriers all bloviate about the need for a stronger military. But they are silent about the need to raise taxes to pay for it.

    But that is just one example. of the fecklessness of those in charge. A distain for science, a fetish for Armegennon, along with corruption, graft, and mendacity are all prominately on display as if to challenge the the fates to set things right.

    Is all this good for the economy? I don’t think so. Never before in human history has a society as unbalanced as ours is today escaped its foolishness without the invisible hard hand stricking it down. Hard.

  23. mDave says:

    After reading all the comments two things come to mind.

    1) Websters Definition of socialism: Any of various theories or systems of social organization in which the means of producing and distributing goods is owned collectively or by a centralized government that often plans and controls the economy.

    Key word I noticed is “owned”

    2) Is the polls reflect reality or what people percieve? Does it come down to are you better off now than you where 4 years ago. I’d say if you were the top 2% you would say yes, the rest might have a different opinion.

    My 2 cents.

  24. Alaskan Pete says:

    Higher min wage would result in more retail spending. At the margin, a poor person is much more likely to spend extra income than a wealthy person. Fact. Given that retail makes our economy go round…you do the math.

    You say a dem agenda is bad for business. Tell me how a republican congress and president running enormous deficits, handing out pork like candy on halloween, and dumping $300B on a bullshit war that creates more terrorists than it kills and adds $20/bbl to the price of oil is good for business. Good for GD, HAL, UTX, and XOM’s business maybe. For the rest of us…umm not so much. It’s like maxing out the credit card for a 3 day bender in Vegas. Only problem is the cc bill eventually comes due, the coke makes you paranoid, and you have to figure out how to get rid of the dead hookers.

    But what do you expect from the same assclowns who still peddle the bullshit line “but,but, but the tax cuts pay for themself!” Laffer indeed…or I should say laugher.

  25. eightnine2718281828mu5 says:


    Key word I noticed is “owned”

    Bingo.

    Wage regulations are not ‘socialism’ any more than banking regulations are ‘socialism’.

  26. whipsaw says:

    per BR:
    “I guess I should have known better than to post something political only 4 months before a mid-term election . . .”

    I was wondering about that, Barry, but since you did and it brought out the Wingers-

    _I can smell the fear in the posts from them.
    _The only socialism that I see in this country is Corporate Socialism. Nothing can survive now without the govt either thru direct contracts or by subsidies in the form of tax cuts against unfunded spending (read corporate handouts) to prop up the military-industrial complex and the media-govt complex.
    _The Chicago Big Box thing is a feeble attempt to bypass a Congress that was sold at auction to become part of the Corporate State.
    _There aren’t any “free markets” there are just markets in which little guys are permitted to enter against big guys if they have the guts to survive long enough to be bought out.
    _Mussolini’s granddaughter (who is in the Italian Parliament and is a former pr0n star) must awake every morning convinced that Benito was simply ahead of his time.
    _I always find it amusing and sad when people start ranting about Vietnam when it has nothing to do with anything. I don’t know who “DH” is, but my guess is that he was never there and is just parroting some Hate Radio talking points.
    _Clinton got in office by agreeing to let the formation of the Corporate State that Raygun and the Adult Bush started proceed and that is his real shame.

    But the bottom line is that the bills have to be paid sooner or later. If you try to spend yourself out of debt, you bankrupt. If you commit war crimes in the name of democracy, you die in prison. Pretty simple.

  27. LarryC says:

    None of this discussion today really matters. If you follow the trend you win, regardless of who is in Congress, the Senate or the White House.

    In the next day or two you will have one of your best shorting opportunities since 2000. Bet on it!

  28. eightnine2718281828mu5 says:


    you have to figure out how to get rid of the dead hookers.

    Enter them in an Ann Coulter lookalike contest?

  29. Brian says:

    Newsflash dudes, Republicans are socialists too. They’ve got their own version of the New Deal: Pork, ag subsidies, pork, defense spending, and pork. They love big government. Love it love it love it. Can’t get enough. They have absolutely nothing to do with the unrecognizable corpse of conservatism.

    Please Jesus, if you still give a fart about the USA, please give us divided government again.

    I’m fascinated by this 30-35% percent of people who’ll always show up on the Bush side of the ledger on pretty much any question.

    “Though Americans say stabilizing Iraq should be Mr. Bush’s top foreign-policy priority, just 34% approve of his handling of the matter.”

    Who are these people?

  30. eightnine2718281828mu5 says:


    If you follow the trend you win, regardless of who is in Congress, the Senate or the White House.

    Part of the reason I’m short right now is that I’m banking on the notion that the market will be terrified at the prospect of a Democratic house; subpoenas, pursestrings and all.

    So if the market drops in anticipation of a Dem takeover… fine with me.

  31. Alaskan Pete says:

    You’re killing me eightninetoodamnlongnamedude. I would enter our 3yr apaloosa mare in a coulter lookalike. Hey Ann, something wrong? Why the long face? Bwahahaha! Whada skank.

    Whipsaw: Sing it brother. Testify.

    At least you folks may have some decent options to vote for. Up here we get “Uncle” Ted Stevens, pork commander supreme and general fucking idiot, Don Young…your run of the mill wingnut, and Lisa “Thanks for the Senate seat, Dad” Murkowski. And her dipshit dad is Gov, cutting undercover deals insecret with the O&G sector ala the Cheney energy task force.

    But we do have some colorful 3rd parties. Alaska Independence Party (loony libertarian secessionist types), Green Party has a sizeable following (dirty granola hippies), Constitution Party (who knows, they’re incoherent to me), and of course the std Libertarian party (rigid idelogues), Dems (GOP-lite), and a large collection of independent marginally insane people who enjoy running for office just to get attention and have a platform to spew nonsense.

    But it could be worse…I used to live in Utah. HAW!

  32. Tom in Indy says:

    All these polls remind me of 2000, 2002, 2004, 2006. Hmmm What do those dates have in common. Too bad polls can’t cast votes. Maybe it will be different this time. Wait a minute, isn’t doing the same thing over and over again but expecting different results the definition of ????

  33. eightnine2718281828mu5 says:


    Wait a minute, isn’t doing the same thing over and over again but expecting different results the definition of ????

    Bush’s Iraq strategy????

  34. JWC says:

    Barry, boy did you bring out some emotions. My hubby and I are fine financially, not rich but we will do okay no matter what happens. I guess some of the commentors would call me a “socialist” since even though I am personally fine, I fear for my country. I am afraid of what kind of country we are leaving my grandchildren. I know that we cannot continue on this fiscal tract without horrible results – sooner or later. I believe in the economic therory of “There is no such thing as a free lunch”…. and so I am afraid.

    I worry about our country in regards to freedoms that we take for granted now. Because of the fear mongering, people are ready to give up freedom for what they perceive to be safety…. not realizing that once given up, it will be difficult to get back. I wouldn’t be surprised that since I go to some of those awful liberal blogs, I’m on a list somewhere.

    I am angry too. I am angry at my son because he
    voted for Bush twice – even when realizing that the Bush economic policies would hurt him and his blue collar family – he voted for him anyway because of his stand on abortion. I’m angry at my son-in-law, the business man, who freely admits that Bush is an idiot, and doesn’t agree with him on the social issues, but voted for him anyway because he is a business man.

    Last but not least, I am outraged over the incompetence that permeates our foreign policy, and the money, lives, and ruined lives it has cost us.

    I try and educate myself, and learn, (thus I come here as well as the liberal blogs) and have become sort of an activist in my later years. But in my 60 some years, I have NEVER been as discouraged for afraid for the future. So if the pollsters called people like me, I can understand where they came from their conclusions.

  35. whipsaw says:

    per Alaskan Pete:
    “Whipsaw: Sing it brother. Testify.

    At least you folks may have some decent options to vote for.”

    I really didn’t want to get started about the Bushists here, but anyway…

    Unfortunately, here in Georgia the choices are basically God’s Own Party if you are in a white district or a Democrat if you are in a black district. The Dope Smoker/Pirate Capitalist Alliance (libertarians) shows up for the big ones, but is as impotent as ever.

    I will give our current Republican governor credit for having twice wept publicly over our GA NG losses in Iraq which have been high. Then again, nobody should have been sent there to begin with, let alone with half-assed equipment.

    At some point, even the purely selfish will swing around and this nonsense will stop. Either that or the career military officers who have seen everything that they swore an oath to go to hell will straighten it out.

  36. whipsaw says:

    And so what will the market do with news that nobody is leaving Iraq anytime soon? http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20060728/wl_afp/usiraqmilitarytroops;_ylt=AuegLFx62Eph6Pj4m6dPDISs0NUE;_ylu=X3oDMTA3OTB1amhuBHNlYwNtdHM-

    Anybody with an ounce of military understanding already knew that long ago, but what about the MM’s and other vampires? Did they really believe all of the propaganda? If so, look for a big drop tomorrow even if they somehow manage to view GNP numbers in a good way,

  37. Mike says:

    Hmph — wow, is anybody going to say anything about the post?

    So for those of us who are data oriented, notice the big 15% or so spike in popularity around …. you guessed it the invasion of Iraq. This pattern in american voters, large support for the use of military force under, in fact, any circumstances is far and away one of the most predictable effects in american politics. This lesson has not been lost on Karl Rove. Though what the’ll do for 2008 I’m sure I don’t even want to think about. By the way the subsequent withdrawl of support by the populace when they discover that why, how, in what manner, and what circumstances and for what goals you use force does matter, is also an extremely typical (though not as solid) American electoral voter response. Fascinating how the Republicans managed to Tarnish the Democrats with that, calling the ‘cowardly, and un-patriotic’ when the real problem is a violence prone, but fairly stupid citizenry.

  38. howard says:

    Tom in Indy, those 2000 polls on Iraq were something else, weren’t they?

    christ almighty: bush is polling worse today than clinton polled in 2000, or than he himself polled in 2002 or 2004.

    there were no iraq polls, of course, in 2000 or 2002, but the polls are much worse than they were in 2004.

    feelings about the economy and the overall direction of the country are worse today than they were in 2000, 2002, or 2004.

    i’d have to look and see how congressional approval compares, but for someone as ill-informed as you, i don’t bother to make the effort.

  39. donna says:

    Dems in office = peace and prosperity. Eight years of it, and the conservatives couldn’t stand it.

    Hey, but corporate welfare is just fine with them. Tell you what, get Walmart to pay people enough to get their employees off government assistance, and I might consider shopping there again. But hey, if the WalMart heirs want to make billions and live in huge gated mansions with bunkers, that’s just fine with you, huh DH?

    Good grief that attitude makes me ill.

  40. Doby says:

    I wonder what Barry’s GayBoy buddy Cody thinks of the fine economic mess we find ourselves in now. He’s probably still posing in his N’Sync leather jacket and pushing tech stocks. LMAO!!

  41. Alaskan Pete says:

    Whipsaw, I grew up in the Atlanta burbs (gwinett co). I hear ya. Of course those were the days of Sen Sam Nunn and Zell Miller before he went insane, flipped parties, and started challenging people to a duel on national television. Is Monica Kaufman still on the local (Channel2?) news? Man, she was a fixture for decades.

    I bet I can give you tomorrow’s traffic report for ATL: We’ve got slowing on the top end perimeter from Ashford Dunwoody to Peachtree Industrial. GA400 is backed up past Northridge. It’s stop n go on the downtown connector and on 85 it’s a 20 min ride from Jimmy Carter Blvd to Buford Hwy. You’re getting some sunshine slowdown on 20 eastbound all the way in.

    So glad to get out of there back in the 90s.

  42. some kind of conservative, maybe says:

    Barry,

    As a so called conservative (whatever the hell that means anymore), the worst vote I ever cast was for Bush’s first term. I will never forgive myself for being such a sucker.

    A short list for consideration: Centralized this. Centralized that. Fear this. Fear that. Subsidize this. Subsidize that. Spying on citizens. Torture. The free press as the “enemy”. The belief that Government knows best. Bigger government programs. Big Brother on all fronts. Services for all. Wars of aggression and occupation.

    None of the above are American traits. These are old Soviet era traits. How did it go to hell so quickly?

    We have a superb Constitution and we can and will do better as a nation. However it is going to take some time to heal these self-inflicted wounds.

    Bush may have had good intentions, but this is now irrelevant. The fact is that the the road to hell is paved with good intentions.

  43. whipsaw says:

    per Alaskan Pete:
    “Whipsaw, I grew up in the Atlanta burbs (gwinett co). I hear ya. Of course those were the days of Sen Sam Nunn and Zell Miller before he went insane, flipped parties, and started challenging people to a duel on national television. Is Monica Kaufman still on the local (Channel2?) news? Man, she was a fixture for decades.”

    Yeah I think Monica is still around (don’t watch much local TV, sorry). And Sam Nunn was something of a hero of mine for opposing Oil War I altho I disagreed with him at the time and it probably cost him a good shot at the presidency. Unfortunately, I think he is a lobbyist now.

    As far as Zell goes, I assume that he is now in some kind of rehab or “helping center.” He wasn’t bad as governor for 2 terms and senator for 1 term, but completely snapped in term 2 and was simply an embarassment.

  44. rick says:


    The last thing we need is move towards socialism

    Socialism? You mean government operating to maximize the public good?

    And doesn’t the military provide a service in pursuit of the public good? Courts too, it would seem.

    Which makes the military and court system socialist, I guess. And any party that supports the military and courts would be socialist as well.
    ____________________________________

    Really don’t think that anyone has to worry about
    socialism hitting the US anytime soon, the US is well
    on their way of concentrating the wealth even more
    towards a fewer % of the population,,, which is a definition of capitalism.

  45. Dan Green says:

    I wonder if a person could do a technical analysis of charts like this. Do you think that similar patterns emerge as with securities?

  46. tjofpa says:

    Gov’t central planning for the good of the Corporate Elite is Fascism not Socialism. Mussolini’s Fascist gov’t was widely (and correctly) hailed back in the 1920′s as the wave of the future. (since that is what we have today.)
    …great lead in since today is opening day for Russo’s Film.

  47. me says:

    “last thing we need is move towards socialism and retarded economic policy.”

    It is retarded. Al this worry about Dems and this has been the most one sided pro buisness governmennever, and what do you do? Did you share. Hell no, just line the CEO pockets and send the jobs overseas. Anyone that thinks the last 5 years have been good for anyone but the super rich is retarded, not compasionate. Even the market hasn’t budged an inch under the most favorable condtions ever, government by Chamber of Commerce.

    Maybe 90% of the people would actually favor some saftey net for health and pensions rather than toss people in the street and “hang” them.

  48. Tom in Indy says:

    Howard,
    Congress scores the lowest of all. Try taking a graduate level statistical analysis course before trusting any poll. Bush has always scored miserably in ‘polling’ data and the press has reported it like it was newsworthy. Yet he wins elections and manages to put most of his agenda through Congress. If you want to hang your hat on polling data, go right ahead, my friend. I fear you will be bedeviled with unmet expectations yet again.