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Dawn sent me links to the Real Clear Politics job approval numbers for Bush and Obama to date (thanks Dawn!), and I thought to myself, “self — I’d really like to see those two line graphs superimposed.”

Being a profoundly lazy woman who no longer owns graphing software, I didn’t go back and replot them from the original data. I just took the two images, knocked out the disapproval line, superimposed them and — using the magic of Photoshop — tugged and squeezed until all the axes aligned. That’s why the lines look funky and chewed. They are reasonably accurate, though.

I don’t think there’s a profound idea to be taken away from this. We’ll never know what Bush’s presidency would have been like without September 11 erupting early on. Or whether he’d have won a second term. I’m not even sure we can read anything into the apparent volatility of Bush’s numbers (that’s probably an artifact of the squashing and stretching I had to do).

Still, that trend can’t make Obama’s political folk happy. When you run as all things to all men and turn out to be not much for not many, the public disillusionment is profound. And disillusionment is a sausage machine: you can’t turn the handle the other way and get your pig back.

Oh, and not a WORD about the line colors, okay? This is a monochrome blog; I’ve got two dramatic choices and I thought the fatter line should be the lighter color. Then I got all through and went, “oh, fuck.”

I hate that I have to think about these things.


Comment from Scubafreak
Time: January 13, 2010, 6:36 pm

Bitch about a LACK OF COLOR? LOL.. Who are we supposed to be, Jesse Jackson and his minions? 😉

Comment from porknbean
Time: January 13, 2010, 6:58 pm

I’m surprised there are that many stupid people still liking Barak O’Chavez.

Comment from Uncle Badger
Time: January 13, 2010, 7:13 pm

Ack! PnB we’ve had ten years of advancing totalitarianism, economic destruction, rampant corruption and the rankest incompetence this side of the Keystone Cops and still around 30 per cent of the maroons in this country will vote for the socialist vermin responsible.

There is simply no clue bat weighty enough to administer intelligence to some people.

Comment from Nicole
Time: January 13, 2010, 7:37 pm

“And disillusionment is a sausage machine: you can’t turn the handle the other way and get your pig back.”

Too awesome. Perfect visual.

Nice job on the kitteh merch, btw. 🙂

Comment from Mrs. Peel
Time: January 13, 2010, 8:28 pm


(It took me several hours to figure out what you meant by the line colors. Racism awareness FAIL?)

(random: I went to an all-black elementary school with a small Montessori program. The black kids there were extremely poor. Most were being raised by their grandparents due to their parents’ absence. The mothers in the Montessori program started their own separate PTA because they didn’t want to associate with the poor blacks. Might have been because they were poor, might have been because they were black, but either way, my mom thought that was total chickenshit and wouldn’t go along with their segregated PTA.)

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: January 13, 2010, 8:41 pm

Heh. I wondered if the problem would be totally obvious or non-obvious.

Comment from EW1(SG)
Time: January 13, 2010, 10:08 pm

I’m gonna go for non-obvious, ’cause I wouldn’t have figured it out if Mrs. Peel hadn’t said something.

Comment from Sockless Joe
Time: January 14, 2010, 10:41 am

Sure, there’s 9/11, but there’s also the fact that Bush barely squeeked into office in 2000 and was immediately hounded for “stealing” the election, whereas Barry the Magnificent Bringer of Light rode into DC on his rainbow-farting unicorn.

Comment from Deborah
Time: January 14, 2010, 11:04 am

Political correctness is sucking the life out of us. I am furious (on your behalf) that you felt like you needed to apologize for rendering a black and white chart and arbitrarily assigned “black” to a person who is black. I read recently (don’t remember where) that Political Correctness is Communism writ small—and slowly killing us all the same.

Comment from Pablo
Time: January 14, 2010, 1:00 pm

Stoaty, if you haven’t been to Bing today, you must go immediately. They’re featuring a disturbingly awesome weasel.

Comment from Red State Witch
Time: January 14, 2010, 1:25 pm

I think Dennis Prager is the one who said that the term “political correctness” is ITSELF politically correct. What political correctness really means is “moral cowardice.” When you can’t even state that the wishy-washy manner of naming things is itself wishy-washy, you’ve already lost the high ground.

And Stoaty, Pablo is right. Totally awesome weasel on Bing today.

Comment from surly ermine
Time: January 14, 2010, 1:38 pm

…rainbow-farting unicorn, haha

yup, nice weasel.

Comment from apotheosis
Time: January 14, 2010, 2:13 pm

Indeed, Bing has been wzl’d.

Comment from jwpaine
Time: January 14, 2010, 3:50 pm

Here’s my personal Obama approval graph (feel free to steal the fancy graphics):
2%   ^
0% _/ ________________________________________________

Comment from Scubafreak
Time: January 14, 2010, 3:52 pm

Surly Ermine is Gregg Gutfeld??? WOO-HOO!!!


Comment from Tibby
Time: January 14, 2010, 4:33 pm

Totally off subject, but no place else I could find to put it: Thanks for letting us steal your graphics. I love the weasels, and of course, your blog. Love the commenters too!
Rainbow-farting unicorn…

Comment from Uncle Badger
Time: January 14, 2010, 4:50 pm

What I find interesting is how many of us are using Bing.

I’m trying to use it instead of Google because they is teh evyl!!! What’s your excuse?

Comment from Enas Yorl
Time: January 14, 2010, 4:53 pm

Yah I’ve largely degoogled my computering because of teh evyl Uncle B. But also because of the cool pictures they use and update every day. Personally I don’t really miss google at all.

Comment from Scubafreak
Time: January 14, 2010, 4:57 pm

Well, I use Google because, it I don’t, the Evyl Mini-me flying monkeys shock me in the nuts with a tazer….

Comment from jwpaine
Time: January 14, 2010, 4:58 pm

I manage a number of websites that are regularly spidered by all the search engines. Just a few months ago, Bing was behind Alexa for spidering (meaning you could have manually entered in more page requests than Bing was generating); now it averages more page requests than Yahoo. More importantly, it send my sites more traffic than Yahoo. So, you guys (plus me) aren’t the only peeps making the switch.

Comment from Deborah
Time: January 14, 2010, 5:05 pm

I use google reader to scout for news articles on a particular topic, but I hate myself for it.

Comment from Uncle Badger
Time: January 14, 2010, 5:42 pm


I read a headline the other day sayingL ‘How Google turned into Microsoft’.

Looks like that’s a pretty common view.

Comment from weirdsister
Time: January 14, 2010, 6:17 pm

I quit using Google for several reasons, “teh evyl” included. The clincher was Pearl Harbor Day; Bing had a very nice commemorative photograph of Pearl Harbor. Google had…fuck all. Screw ’em.

Comment from dfbaskwill
Time: January 14, 2010, 6:29 pm

The light skinned line is OK by me, but then again, I don’t have a dialect.

Comment from Red State Witch
Time: January 14, 2010, 7:23 pm

Damn, weirdsister beat me to it. I went to Bing for the same reason. Plus Google bites. Plus it is evil. Plus, using “google” as a verb is teh ghey.

Comment from Uncle Badger
Time: January 14, 2010, 7:31 pm

I’m with you on that, Red State Witch.

Then again… I’ve just spent a happy half an hour looking at which potato varieties to grow next year (ever seen a weasel laugh?) and bloody Google produced consistently better results.

Still don’t like ’em, though.

Comment from Pablo
Time: January 14, 2010, 10:29 pm

Wasn’t it Google that decreed “Don’t be evil” and then they go and do that very damned thing. It was lovely of China to knife them in the back, I must say.

Bing works and, well, look at that weasel.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: January 14, 2010, 10:31 pm

Waaaaaait a second, Tibby. You thank me sweetly for the graphics, but you don’t appear to have a website. You’re not just being shy, are you?

Comment from Tibby
Time: January 15, 2010, 5:43 pm

Nah, had ferrets in another life, can’t have them now. I miss their wonderful weasel-ly-ness. Yours make me smile, so I’ve got a couple of them on my desktop.

Comment from mike
Time: January 18, 2010, 4:03 pm

Won’t know what Bush’s ratings would have been without the media bashing him incessantly. He never did one thing right.
Obama, on the other hand benefits from many tongue baths.

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