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Tuesday, August 31, 2010

I Don't Get It (UPDATED)

Polling is starting to offer up a vision of free fall for Democrats wildly out of proportion to any facts on hand. It is taking on a weirdly hysterical and hyperbolic tinge. Can it really be that Republicans just sound cocky these days and that is enough to get millions of lemmings to leap into GOP Daddy's arms in the midst of distress? Have mainstream media and polling organs fallen into some bizarre attentional well they no longer have the critical resources to contextualize? Is this a massive but actually insubstantial steam-cloud that filled the emptiness of August and will evaporate in the face of DNC ads and ground game in the actual run-up to mid-terms?

UPDATED -- no, please don't "inform" me via e-mail that unemployment is catastrophically high and billionaire bailouts don't make everyday people feel particularly celebratory, and don't forward me Drew Weston's general diagnosis with which I have some quibbles but more or less agree like most every sensible person on earth surely would as a general matter -- isn't he pretty much summarizing the netroots cw that has coalesced over the last seven months or so? I'm a rhetorician by trade, you know, I do get the whole framing thing, and of course I get the obvious general socioeconomic context, but I still don't get the hyperbolic skew in polling this month in particular (prompted by what, the whole not-mosque brutal brou-ha-ha?) nor do I quite see why folks would turn to the GOP when GOP approval is lower than Dem approval and given the fact that attention spans can't really be so short that you would want to reward the rampaging evil idiots who destroyed the world more than the lame wusses who didn't manage to save the world yet. Sorry, it just doesn't make sense to me. Here, Nate Silver surveys the very same scene without the perplexity, so maybe it really is just me.

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