A Critical Distinction
Instapundit links to this Mark Steyn piece, which references a key distinction made by Christopher Hitchens. The distinction is "dislike" versus "have contempt for," and is an all important piece of political analysis that is largely missing from the MSM, because they are in full-scale euphoria over Bush's approval ratings. They think this spells guaranteed doom for Reps and success for Dems. Well, my personal approval rating for Bush is probably somewhere in line with the rest of the nation's (if you make the assume that all these polls accurately reflect the nation's mood), but does that translate into a vote for Hillary? "No, nay, never" as the old Irish ditty goes. Dissatisfaction is an opportunity for one's competitors, but not a guaranteed sale. You have to bring a viable alternative to the table to capitalize on the dissatisfaction, albeit a less viable one than if the satisfaction level were higher. I don't think the current crop of Dems is up to closing the sale and I have said before on this blog that the complete absence of what I would call a 'Moynihan Democrat' is a huge problem for the party, a problem to which the MSM is blind. In the blogosphere the understanding is more acute, and most understand that '06 and '08 is basically all about the extent to which conservative or Republican voters want to smack around their current crop - do they want to throw the bums out wholesale and turn over the reins or do they want to take away a little power and punish select bozos but otherwise keep the picture intact? That is the question.