The 'Bush Recovery' Narrative: How Dems Might Squander Their '06 Opportunity
- White House Flying Higher
- Clinton and Kerry Show Democratic Divide on Troop Withdrawal (written by our favorite anti-Dem narrative pusher, Adam Nagourney)
- Spate of Good News Gives White House a Chance to Regroup
- Democrats are still divided over the war in Iraq
- Will Zarqawi's Death Mark a Turnaround for Bush?
- For the president, perhaps a long-sought boost
Steve Benen notes the re-emerging theme and looks more closely at the 'good' news reporters and Republicans are crowing about:
"Knight Ridder said Bush "is on a bit of a roll." Roll Call reported that "Republicans are taking the past two weeks' run of good news as evidence that the party's political fortunes may be on the rebound." The WaPo emphasized the "spate of positive developments" that may interrupt "the president's months-long slide in opinion polls." The New York Daily News quoted a top Republican source saying, "We've got so much good news popping out these days I don't know where to start."Kevin Drum adds:
Please. I never root for bad news, but the recent events that have the GOP so excited aren't indicative of a party — or an agenda — on the comeback trail..."
"Talk about the soft bigotry of low expectations. The GOP barely won a congressional election in a district that's 60% Republican. After a year of looking, the White House finally persuaded someone to become Secretary of the Treasury. They killed a terrorist they could have killed three years ago if they'd wanted to. And Bush's top aide has "avoided criminal charges."Tom Legg channels Stephen Colbert:
Next up: FEMA fails to screw up after Hurricane Alberto is downgraded to a tropical storm. Another triumph for the White House!"
"After a week of pandering to the gay haters, xenophobes, and old rich Republicans, the Busheviks dropped a few 500 pound smart bombs for TV and wheeled out the quite well preserved corpse of boogeyman #1.... As Stephen Colbert of Comedy Central put it at the White House Correspondent's Dinner a month ago:Greg Sargent offers his take:One of the key points that Colbert didn't satirise about the Busheviks is their steadfast belief in the importance of "momentum". Unka KKKarl Rove firmly believes that momentum is the key to building and maintaining popularity, which is one thing the Busheviks are currently lacking. So of course America should expect a week or two of political grandstanding on the war in Iraq..."
I stand by this man. I stand by this man because he stands for things. Not only for things, he stands on things. Things like aircraft carriers and rubble and recently flooded city squares. And that sends a strong message, that no matter what happens to America, she will always rebound -- with the most powerfully staged photo ops in the world.
Taylor Marsh keeps it simple:
"Yesterday morning I predicted that Karl Rove's escape from legal jeopardy -- combined with the killing of Zarqawi -- would lead the media to start chanting a Bush-begins-his-rebound chorus. Well, the conductor has lifted his baton, and right on cue, the singing has begun."
Operation save Bush's presidential butt has begun.Now ask yourself: why isn't it enough to simply report the news? Why the instant need to write Bush-propping process stories? Why the mad rush to speculate about Bush's "long-sought" boost?
Stirling Newberry opines:
"Bush is going to control the media image cycle, because he has the US military working to produce photo ops for him, and the US military to airlift him to where he needs to be. He also has hundreds of billions of dollars of pork to slosh around the country in order to tip marginal districts in his party's favor come November. Against this top down pressure of a top down economy backed by a top down broadcast system, is a different, and new politics, pressure. That pressure comes from the fact that for every dollar Bush spatters in pork, there are dozens of people who do not get the dollar, but pay the higher inflationary costs for it. For every person who jumps in Pavlovian response to a Bush scalp, there are others waiting for their son to come home."As Bush's numbers have spiraled downward, the outrageous sycophancy chronicled daily by Media Matters and in book form by Eric Boehlert has subsided somewhat. But the pro-Bush and anti-Dem narratives I've written about haven't changed. And the danger here is clear: any uptick in Bush's polls will be seized upon by the hungry press and spun within an inch of reality to revive the heady years where a 'resolute' Bush could do no wrong and Democrats were mixed up, mangled and muddled.
Democrats would do well to heed that danger going into the midterms. The anti-left and pro-right narratives are unbroken, they've simply been muffled by Bush's plummet in the polls. This recent spate of articles is evidence that the storylines can be revved up at a moment's notice.
Soft, divided, whining, troop-hating, over-eager Democrats battling tough, determined Republicans basking in the glow of Bush's rebound -- that's the storyline we could be dealing with heading into November. Are we ready?