There was an interesting post the other day by Cenk Uygur comparing Bush’s latest approval numbers (36%) with those posted by Bill Clinton on the day of his impeachment (72%): Big Media lie: People like George Bush.
You know me; I can’t resist a picture. So here you go, from Professor Pollkatz. First, Bush’s approval numbers to-date:
Next, Bill Clinton’s approval numbers (second term only):
(Note the y-axis scales, by the way. Bush’s goes from 20% to 100%, with gridlines every 20%. Clinton’s goes from 20% to 80%, with gridlines every 10%. Someone’s sure to accuse me of making an apples-to-oranges visual comparison here, but that’s the way Pollkatz made the graphs, and I don’t want to spend the time to make them conform more closely to each other.)
Individually, people can be pretty stupid. Collectively, they can be pretty smart. And in those numbers you see a collective judgement of Bush and of Clinton.
Competence matters. Character (as revealed by a willingness to get blow jobs from interns and lie about it under oath) matters, too, but on balance, much of the country basically approved of the job Clinton did. Meanwhile, Bush’s numbers sink lower and lower, as people realize that even if he seems like a nice guy to have a beer or ride a bike with, he’s got a real knack for making bonehead decisions.