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On the eve of tonight's debate, more bad news for Bush.
October 8, 2004 11:52 AM   Subscribe

On eve of tonight's debate, more bad news for Bush. The economy stumbled last month, with only 96,000 new jobs -- far short of the 138,000 jobs the Bush Administration predicted, or the 150,000 new jobs needed every month just to keep up with population growth. Another interesting tidbit is that 37,000 of the 96,000 new jobs are government employees, up from 24,000 in August and 11,000 in July. Is the timing coincidental? Meanwhile, electoral-vote.com changed their methodology -- again -- so that it more accurately reflects recent poll results. The difference is striking.
posted by insomnia_lj (36 comments total)

 
this is probably very bad news for his blink rate.
posted by quonsar at 11:56 AM on October 8, 2004


I wonder if he'll be packing [Salon.com link] tonight. Wait wait, let me finish... over.
posted by psmealey at 12:00 PM on October 8, 2004


Good! More arrows in Kerry's quiver to jab into Bush.

Maybe Bush blinks so much because he's trying to fly away?

That would be an interesting ploy by Bush. He'll just open up ten or fifteen new government departments and staff them with the unemployed. That'll shore up his numbers.

Of course, he'd fold all those new departments as soon as he's won/stolen the election.

Nice to see Kerry starting to stake out a solid lead. Let's hope tonight sees him extend that lead. It'd make for an interesting desperation spin from the Bush camp.

The final projection on Electoral-Vote still has Bush winning by a landslide though. Nice to know reality is very slowly percolating through the site. I stopped checking if after it extended Bush's lead after the debates.
posted by fenriq at 12:13 PM on October 8, 2004


(assumes this will become tonight's debate thread and sets up lawnchair and lays down blanket)
posted by Peter H at 12:14 PM on October 8, 2004


Bush is really under the gun here. Any guesses on what tack he's going to take in tonight's performance? It seems like he's going to have to go negative fast and early but it doesn't seem like a winning strategy for the town-hall format. What advice would you give him if you were his strategist?
posted by rks404 at 12:19 PM on October 8, 2004


Hey, has this been discussed anywhere?

http://www.salon.com/news/feature/2004/10/08/bulge/index_np.html

Bush's mystery bulge

The rumor is flying around the globe. Was the president wired during the first debate?
- - - - - - - - - - - -
By Dave Lindorff

Oct. 8, 2004  |  Was President Bush literally channeling Karl Rove in his first debate with John Kerry? That's the latest rumor flooding the Internet, unleashed last week in the wake of an image caught by a television camera during the Miami debate. The image shows a large solid object between Bush's shoulder blades as he leans over the lectern and faces moderator Jim Lehrer.

The president is not known to wear a back brace, and it's safe to say he wasn't packing. So was the bulge under his well-tailored jacket a hidden receiver, picking up transmissions from someone offstagefeeding the president answers through a hidden earpiece? Did the device explain why the normally ramrod-straight president seemed hunched over during much of the debate? (continued in link)
posted by Peter H at 12:19 PM on October 8, 2004


"The final projection on Electoral-Vote still has Bush winning by a landslide though . . . I stopped checking if after it extended Bush's lead after the debates."

That's what happens when you base your conclusions on old, old data.

electoral-vote's methodology isn't perfect -- some degree of averaging amongst very recent polls would be beneficial -- but at least their main page's results should now reflect things as they are this week, as opposed to last month.
posted by insomnia_lj at 12:19 PM on October 8, 2004


Ha, oops! Just noticed psmealey's link. I'm a maroon. Scuse that.


posted by Peter H at 12:21 PM on October 8, 2004


Here's a picture on the jobs market from the WSJ


posted by psmealey at 12:23 PM on October 8, 2004


Not only is there a bulge, there is a wire leading up from the bulge to his right shoulder.
posted by 4easypayments at 12:25 PM on October 8, 2004


So that's why the debate rules say you can't bring charts or graphs.

From the Washington Post writeup:
The figures were not "materially" influenced by the string of hurricanes that hit Florida and other southeastern states, the department said.

Labor Secretary Elaine Chao, in a statement, said the economy "has been through a great deal lately -- devastating hurricanes and rising oil prices."
Also, MSNBC's web site briefly annouced 300,000 new jobs today. [via Oliver Willis]

posted by kirkaracha at 12:27 PM on October 8, 2004


It seems like he's going to have to go negative fast and early but it doesn't seem like a winning strategy for the town-hall format.

Rude Pundit is suggesting that Kerry, anyway, go negative fast and early. I'm not sure, though, exactly how well this is gonna play with the mom-&-pop attendees. Note before clicking: The key word here is "Rude."
posted by soyjoy at 12:27 PM on October 8, 2004



posted by Peter H at 12:31 PM on October 8, 2004


If Dubya's recent stump speeches and his new blitz of ads are any indication the debates tonight can be nothing but negative from him.

Let's hope there are no dogs to kick or frogs to blow up tonight. And that the SS corps (doesn't that sound so fitting for Bush's Secret Service?) keep the Big Red Button out of his reach until he cools down.
posted by nofundy at 12:38 PM on October 8, 2004


From the Salon piece:

Suggestions that Bush may have using this technique stem from a D-day event in France, when a CNN broadcast appeared to pick up -- and broadcast to surprised viewers -- the sound of another voice seemingly reading Bush his lines, after which Bush repeated them.

If there's no footage of this, I don't believe it. I really really want to believe it, though. Is there any?
posted by PinkStainlessTail at 12:38 PM on October 8, 2004


W is going to be much better prepared this time.

I'm thinking back to the first debate in 1984, when President Reagan came out and delivered the most out-of-touch, space-cadet, rambling performance I've seen since, oh, last week. The next debate, his handlers eased up on him, decided to let Reagan be Reagan, and the personality that appealed so inexplicably to so many Americans was allowed to shine through; Mondale was blown out of the water.

Look for Bush to be much less angry this time. He'll be composed, thoughtful, and projecting only intense concern about America under a Kerry Presidency. Rove and Company are quite capable of analyzing round one and correcting course. I still think it will be a Kerry win, but a much more narrow one.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 12:42 PM on October 8, 2004




Kerry definitely won the debate. Bush was better than the last debate but Kerry had a much stronger start, which left Bush in catch up mode all night. Plus Bush was thrown off by that question about education policy.
posted by strangeleftydoublethink at 12:52 PM on October 8, 2004


I'll give 50-1 that Bush spontaneously combusts 20 minutes into it. In my conspiracy-addled mind, part of me suspects that these guys are trying to throw the election without being too obvious about it, and pissing off their contributors.

Bush's 2d rate performance - even for him - last week, and Cheney's "who gives a shit" showing on Tuesday, maybe these guys realize that they've accomplished everything they needed to (Halliburton on the ground in Iraq, huge forward bases in the MidEast), and they'd be just as happy to let Kerry figure this mess out over the next four years.
posted by psmealey at 12:55 PM on October 8, 2004


Told ya so (and i remember that dday thing)

I can not believe Gallup picked the audience for tonight...it won't be balanced at all--and expect many softball questions. Gibson's a marshmallow, too.

We haven't created enough jobs to keep the working age pop. working yet again, let alone all the new college grads from may and june. I hope Kerry brings it up, if a questioner doesn't.
posted by amberglow at 12:57 PM on October 8, 2004


Been a lot of talk about the BULGE all week. I've seen pictures of Kerry's less pronounced bulge at the same debate. I think they're both sporting body armor under the suits.

Anyway, everyone knows that Bush gets his instructions beamed to his teeth for clean, undetectable in-skull audio.
posted by damehex at 12:58 PM on October 8, 2004


[FSCHH] YES, THE BASTARD FORGOT POLAND! SAY "WELL ACTUALLY HE FORGOT POLAND". GO FOR IT GEORGYBOY. OVER. [FSCHH]
posted by Pretty_Generic at 12:58 PM on October 8, 2004


In my conspiracy-addled mind, part of me suspects that these guys are trying to throw the election without being too obvious about it, and pissing off their contributors.

I've wondered the same thing.
posted by bluedaniel at 1:18 PM on October 8, 2004


Isn't it more likely that they're just incompetently evil? They've been this way for four years after all.
posted by Pretty_Generic at 1:22 PM on October 8, 2004


Still the best comment so far on the 'wired' question...

damehex, I remember thinking the body armor answer was probably the right one back when I read amberglow's thread. The whole earpiece idea was just so out-there tin-foil-hat, it seemed. But there's a lot of additional info I'm getting that's making me say, heyyyyyy, wait a second. I hadn't heard about this D-Day thing, or the proscription against camera shots from the back. So, as a proponent of the body-armor theory, do you know of some kind of body armor that would produce this odd shape, with the flat middle and the curve running up the shoulder blade? That could put this to rest, I think. I'm just not willing to spend the time digging after it.
posted by soyjoy at 1:36 PM on October 8, 2004


The Post thinks that Bush's isolation from press conferences and real questions by real people could hurt him in tonight's debate. I agree, plus it's past his bedtime, and who doesn't get cranky when they're up too late?
posted by kirkaracha at 1:42 PM on October 8, 2004


Unless the "bulge" is some watergate-era surplus radio equipment, it's way too big for me to believe it's covert listening equipment. With all the elaborate conspiracy theories going around, surely we can agree that semi-modern comm gear is well within our president's reach?
posted by mragreeable at 2:06 PM on October 8, 2004


With all the elaborate conspiracy theories going around, surely we can agree that semi-modern comm gear is well within our president's reach?

Hmm, dunno. Maybe they're buying American (*duck*)
posted by NewBornHippy at 2:30 PM on October 8, 2004


Visit this URL: http://www.georgewbush.com/News/Read.aspx?ID=3629
Search for "Say something else about the tax code". LOL. It is too funny!

BTW... I do view the big box and the prompting as two totally different issues. We do not know that they are connected, but the box has certainly highlighted the issue of audio prompting. There could be a very good reason behind the box on his back.

But we have a delcious October Surprise, don't we?
posted by jmccorm at 3:02 PM on October 8, 2004




I said this sometime ago in another thread but the question still looms:
Am i right that he's sucking the life-force out of this poor crippled orphan!!?
posted by Peter H at 3:11 PM on October 8, 2004


I just had a thought, maybe the box on his back is his on/off switch?
posted by fenriq at 3:29 PM on October 8, 2004


fenriq - HA. or maybe it's his battery cover?
posted by Peter H at 3:39 PM on October 8, 2004


Am i right that he's sucking the life-force out of this poor crippled orphan!!?

Um, no. You're quite obviously wrong.
He's actually sucking the life-force out of this addled granny, urging her to stay alive long enough to vote for him, then kick the bucket and help him save money on Social Security...
posted by Busithoth at 3:52 PM on October 8, 2004


I wonder if we'll get to see the Libertarian candidate get arrested tonight.
posted by homunculus at 3:57 PM on October 8, 2004


jmccorm, that IS hilarious.

For the lazier among you, Bush's response to "Say something else about the tax code," which he repeats out loud, is to then say, yes - "Something else about the tax code."

G'night, Gracie.
posted by soyjoy at 4:33 PM on October 8, 2004


37,000 of the 96,000 new jobs are government employees

*cough* Small government republicans. *cough*
posted by psmealey at 9:20 AM on October 10, 2004


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