Thursday, July 7, 2022

9 of 10 Say Country "Is On the Wrong Track?" Why The Anti-Biden Polling Fools May Never Get It

 As I read the news yesterday 

Biden Approval Rating Plummets to New Low, Marking Year of High Disapproval

"A Monmouth University poll released Tuesday found that Biden's approval rating dropped to a new low in June, with 58 percent of Americans saying they disapprove of the job he's doing. Just over a third of Americans—36 percent—approve."

I was not surprised that too many of my countrymen had lost their mental bearings, sense of fairness and rational proportion. Also their memory of what it was like under Donald Trump -  hate tweeting twenty times a day from his toilet seat,  attacking the media and anyone who differed from him, while trashing every democratic norm,  including trying to invoke the Insurrection act against peaceful protesters,

Trump's Invocation of the Insurrection Act Ought To Alarm Every Sentient Citizen 

 while later inciting an insurrection himself

 Americans, following the Afghan pullout last year and driven by the FOX News propagandists,  began to lose confidence in President Biden's effectiveness. (That includes many of the young (18- 34 y/o)  hyper- idealists who originally voted for him and for Dems - but have a bad case of making the perfect the enemy of the good.) The negative impressions were compounded as new variants of the Covid 19 virus emerged and then - the topper - inflation hitting 8.3 percent, along with spiking gas prices. As the Repukes and FOX News kept larding on the 'blame Biden' meme - in a desperate power grab for a mid-term 'shellacking' of the Dems - Americans kept biting. And stopped thinking.   

Blogger P.M. Carpenter took down the bullshit about the "inept" Afghan withdrawal in a guest post from a year ago:


I hadn't watched so much cable news since 9/11. Now I hope to make it another 20 years of CableLite. The most appalling and concentrated bullshit rained from the airwaves and onto our screens yesterday as unmistakable symptoms of America's rolling crackup — a national display of soulless psychoses mixed with poisonous partisanship seasoned with extraordinary stupidity, ignorance and every imaginable flavor of sheer pixilation.

Before me were elected officeholders, former public officials, military veterans and national security "analysts" pounding their Zoom tables and calling for a rejuvenation of the very hellhole of 20 years from which President Biden was finally extricating us.

The hysteria, as hysteria is wont to be, was nuts: calls for an abrupt cancellation of the withdrawal timeline; more Marines to expand Kabul airport's defensive perimeter; the reoccupation of the Bagram airbase; a landing of the 101st Airborne; an American-manned hunt for IS-K terrorists; necessarily massive redeployments to secure every last American and every last ally anywhere in Afghanistan. Essentially, a whole new war.

The number of the "stranded" and "Biden-abandoned," which last week was somewhere around 60,000, grew over the last few days to 90,000, then to 120,000, and by yesterday the number on cable news had grown to hundreds of thousands. Hysteria inflation

But it didn't seem to matter as too many FOX-drunk lamebrains thought Trump could have done it better when Trump was a prime source of the problem!  I.e. making pacts-agreements with the Taliban that they'd suffer virtually no blowback if they mounted future incursions. And at the same time- and in collusion with Stephen Miller-  scuttling the SIV program as former Pence aide Olivia Troye noted at the time.  (The SIV, for those unaware,  was supposed to provide a path to residency for local Afghans who worked with the U.S. government in Afghanistan.)

 Ms. Troye went so far, appearing on a Maddow segment last August, to compare Trump's betrayal of Afghans to his earlier betrayal of the Iraqi Kurds, allowing them to become Turkish cannon fodder.  Leave all that for now, Americans who poll low on Biden, driving him even beneath Trump's  numbers, seem to have had their brains and sense collectively hijacked by Covid.

Recall barely 4 months ago Americans told pollsters they were willing to "sacrifice at the pump" to "make Putin pay" for his brash invasion of Ukraine. But once the Russian inflows of oil were cut and gas prices spiked that went by the backboards and they blamed Biden anyway. So much for the sunshine patriots!

The entitled, miserable ingrates also blame him for the 8.3% inflation forgetting-  as per a WSJ piece yesterday -  that he ensured they'd have money to survive the pandemic and the accompanying economic dislocation, e.g. see: 'Americans Tap Pandemic Savings to Cope With Inflation', p. A3):

"Americans’ checking-account balances jumped after they got their pandemic stimulus payments, bank executives have said. While customers have spent some of that money, balances still remain markedly above where they were in 2019, said Chris Wheat, co-president of the JPMorgan Chase Institute, the bank’s in-house think tank."

"Mark Zandi, Moody’s Analytics chief economist. “This is allowing consumers to stay in the game.” 

Yuh think?  Then there's Jamie Dimon's take (ibid.):

"JPMorgan Chief Executive Jamie Dimon last month said U.S. consumers still had between six and nine months of spending power remaining in their bank accounts."

So these little anti-Biden polling bratskies are actually biting the hands that've fed them (with the stimulus, i.e. from the American Rescue Plan)  while they whine and forget Trump (and Mitch McConnell - had the 'pukes held the Senate) would have let them all rot.  But then American memories are feckless and fragile.

Alan S. Blinder in his own WSJ op-ed (Biden Isn’t to Blame for Inflation,July 1st, p. A15)  agrees that "the ARP’s $1.9 trillion price tag (over 10 years) was probably too large, as some critics warned" but:

"Mr. Biden was focused on maintaining job growth; and besides, the inflationary consequences of the ARP were probably negligible. Moodys’ Mark Zandi has estimated that the act added a mere 0.1% to today’s inflation rate. Why so little? At about $190 billion a year, ARP spending amounted to only 0.8% of 2021’s gross domestic product."


"The U.S. economy blasted out of the Covid-induced recession of 2020 like a rocket, soaring at a 34% annual rate in the third quarter of 2020 and then at nearly a 6% average annual rate over the next three quarters. Much of that rapid recovery was powered by those highly stimulative fiscal and monetary policies. And it’s a good thing we had them. The U.S. recovery was far faster than Europe’s."

Indeed, the labor market hasn't been this robust for workers, coming out of a recovery, in generations. The latest jobs report, 379,000 added, even has the Fed's Jerome Powell scratching his head.   But are most Americans appreciative? Do they recognize the plus in the economy?  Hell no, contending with lockdowns and the virus for two years has dulled their neural capacity, their critical thinking ability.  They can't even see that the remorseless GOP plan to steal power and upend our democracy is a bigger threat to them than inflation.  

 Why else would  these ingrates -  with the memories of gnats-  keep piling onto Biden with their negative polling. At least today WSJ Business & Finance columnist James Mackintosh slapped down some of the inflation hype and bullshit ("Consumers Say 2022 is Worst Economy Ever', p. B1):

"The sanity check: Really? Worse than when lines of cars waited for hours for fuel in a deep recession in 1974, if it was even available?  Worse than when unemployment was almost double the current level and inflation in double digits in 1980, with interest rates at 14.5%? Worse than after the 9/11 attacks, or when the global banking system was on the brink of failure in 2008? Come on."

Bingo, James! But see most of these whining ninnies weren't alive then, or if they were, probably existed in a drug haze.  Else, as I noted, they have the memory of gnats.  Just reading about their constant pissing and moaning about inflation and prices as if this is the worst ever makes me almost want to hurl a blinding wad of venom, as Janice is often wont to do.  The other aspect, their own savings and financial status are actually quite solid and stable, i.e. from  WSJ today,  Voters See a Bad Economy, Even if They’re Doing OK,


"Inflation is melting away the value of household paychecks. Even so,  household finances are as strong overall as they’ve been in decades, thanks to money saved during the pandemic, debt paid off over the past decade and a strong job market."

 But they're so blinded by FOX News'  barrage of  anti-Biden brain barf their own brains can't function properly. Can't think or process independently so they plan to take it out on Biden and the Dems in November - paving the way for an authoritarian, one party (actually cult) - state.

These morons forget or dismiss the fact that Biden's Covid relief package rescued the economy from free fall and even now the economy is quite strong - which is why the Fed increase in interest rates is not inciting a classical recession.   Indeed, Andrew Egger of The Dispatch noted a solid jobs report in May with 390,00 new hires, wages still rising and millions of available jobs.  Would 'Muricans rather have a 1% inflation rate and a depression? Maybe. 

As incredible as it sounds, some "moderate, suburban moms" are even thinking of voting Repuke in the midterms despite the vile Roe v. Wade ruling. What? Are they mad or just disconnected from the magnitude of consequences - including shorting or severely cutting their Social Security - if they hand the levers of power back to the Reep maggots?  E.g.

by Joan McCarter | June 30, 2022 - 7:27am | permalink

And you can be certain even if the extremist SC court doesn't go that far any Reep majority in congress will attempt to turn Social Security as a budgetary item -with outlays voted on in a GOP House- to have the basis for future tax cuts.  (A number of red states are already using Covid stimulus $ to pay for their tax cuts.)  Let's also bear in mind - as noted in the WSJ today (Business & Finance, p. B12, A New Healthcare Crisis Looms:

Costs for people insured by Obamacare mostly fell during the pandemic, thanks to subsidies, but federal aid is now in peril With Americans spending more on just about everything these days, one big expense has been uncharacteristically tame lately for nearly 15 million of them.

Premiums for so-called Obamacare health-insurance plans mostly declined this year but are set to rise sharply as subsidies expire in December. That could spell trouble for American families as well as care providers such as hospitals just as the economy slows down...people insured through the Affordable Care Act have been spared because of generous federal funding as part of the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan Act.

The American Rescue Plan of $1.9 trillion which so many blame for spiking inflation actually provided subsidies for the ACA to keep many afloat. Where's the gratitude? Hell, where's the memory? Think if the Reeps are elected, as so many predict, they will come to the rescue with federal aid for Obamacare? Dream on!  They are more likely to cut it further!

So I have little sympathy for all the petty whining and bitching about Joe Biden especially when our democracy is at stake.  Nor do I have much respect for Americans tanking Biden's polls and also saying the "country is going in the wrong direction."   (A near  9 in 10 proportion which indicates many Dems -progressives have also piled onto this lamebrain polling train.) If Trump had won in 2020, what direction do they believe we'd be going?  I can say right now, to hell in a handbasket. 

If Americans polling low on Biden and the nation's direction rate their bank accounts and gas prices more important than democracy then maybe they deserve an authoritarian state run by a traitor like Trump, or like Orban's Hungary or Erdogan's Turkey.  Problem is, those of us with more than air between our ears will get saddled with it too, if too many vote like idiots in the midterms because they're delirious about inflation now. 

Sadly, these negative- polling Americans may never get it because the upheaval from the pandemic has ripped an excessive amount of mental discernment, insight and other critical thinking capacity from their craniums - and left them "literal fools" not literate citizens, as Janice puts it. It's a sad commentary and we may all pay for it dearly in November.

See Also:

by Peter Dreier | July 16, 2022 - 6:38am | permalink


"It’s Not the Economy; it’s the Constitution!' - 


by Robert Becker | July 11, 2022 - 6:05am | permalink

Midterm Democrats must skewer the right as vigilante control freaks with a manic domination complex


Okay, comrades and mud wrestlers, here’s an urgent, brain-twisting test, with nothing less than a nation’s mental stability at stake. Like Trump, Republicans don’t want much – just everything enmeshed by anachronistic distortions of history – spanning bedrooms to medical services, school rooms to court houses. Low taxes, deregulation, guns galore and “freedom rings” – except for suppressed voters, enlightened education, tolerance for gender choices, contraception and procreation. Watch out: “Biblical” traffic rules, hillbilly culture criticism, and a national censorship board loom.

In this corner, the armed, swaggering, law-be-damned militants pushing violent disruption to serve the subjugation of the majority. They are called Republicans, Rethuglicans, or the “God, guns, crackpots and states’ rights/secessionist” party – or worse. Deplorables scorn fair elections, judicial precedents, and public health expertise all the while ridiculing the reason/logic/evidence crowd (alas, adults stuck with resolving intended and unintended consequences).


by Robert Reich | July 5, 2022 - 7:00am | permalink

— from Robert Reich's Substack


Let’s be clear. The corporate price hikes have come on top of a worldwide surge in pent-up demand following the worst of the pandemic, global shortages of goods and services seeking to meet that demand, China’s lockdowns, and Putin’s war in Ukraine (which has put upward pressure on energy and food prices).

But the corporate price hikes often exceed these higher costs.

As gas prices at the pump reach their highest point in 14 years, Big Oil is enjoying a gusher. In the first quarter of 2022, Chevron’s profits more than quadrupled from the year before. ExxonMobil’s profits more than doubled. In the past month alone, even though the price of crude oil has fallen approximately $15 a barrel, prices at gas pumps have barely dropped.

Big corporations aren’t pouring these windfall profits back into production. Instead, they’ve embarked on the largest program of stock buybacks in history. ExxonMobil alone plans to buy back $30 billion of stock this year (up from the $10 billion it announced earlier). If it hadn’t been for the buybacks, the stock market would look even worse.

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