I was listening to NPR this morning and I heard something interesting. Well, I hear something interesting everytime I listen to NPR, but this was particularly interesting. Tony Blair was decribed as "abysmally unpopular" if I remember correctly. The first five hits in a Google search for "Tony Blair's approval ratings" are this, this, this, this and this. If we look at the dates on these links, they are all over the place. I refined my search to 2006. We get an undated collection of polls from YouGov, a website that is new to me and another report from March 2, 2006 placing Blair's popularity at 28%. The Washington Post.com (a website I read with trepidation) claims that Bush and Blair are two peas in a pod that is headed for the bottom of the ocean of approval ratings. We have reached the main point of this linky paragraph. At what point does referring to approval ratings below fifty percent become inane? Shouldn't an honest reporter start calling them disapproval ratings? Wouldn't it be far more accurate to say that the UK's Prime Minister has a disapproval rating close to seventy percent? For that matter, if Tony Blair has "abysmal" ratings at 28%, why aren't Bush's ratings similar described? Instead of calling them bad or poor, shouldn't we be calling him one of the most reviled Presidents in the history of our fair nation?
You may have noticed that I am just linking to everything that shows up on the first page of a Google search. The reason is that the internets are a series of tubes and by screwing around with crap you can find a whole mess of supporting arguments, if you want. I don't want to do that. I like the internet the way it is and will fight to defend it. I did link to FAUX News and did so to show that I am all about arguments and countering them.
For my next piece of internet investigation, I was walking around my neighborhood yesterday and I remembered a couple of intriguing news stories. There is a connection that I find compelling and I haven't seen anywhere else. I would be extremely surprised if no one else has noticed this and, quite frankly, extremely disappointed if I am the first person to notice it.
Do you all remember the story of the stockpile of seized ammunition in Iraq was lost? My Google search is here. Artillery shells and explosives were stolen out from under our noses in Iraq. There were fears that these were stolen in order to make nuclear weapons. I thought that was ridiculous. A bunch of Madhi army(or whoever) guys are not going to steal munitions and sit on them in the hopes that some day some one might deliver them some fissile material and that they will also be delivered the expertise to make a fissionable bomb. The perps did the most sensible and useful thing with the explosives they could. They made IEDs with it. I should note that I HAVE NO PROOF OF THE VERACITY OF MY CLAIM. I only have news reports that describe IEDs as artillery shells and high explosives. While we are all running around screaming about nuclear, chemical and biological weapons, the fighters in the Iraqi Civil War are being quite effective at turning ammunition similar to what was stolen into cheap and easy to use anti-vehicle and anti-personnel booby traps. A Google search for IED returns Global Security, Wikipedia, and MSNBC.
There are a few times when I hate being right all the time.
Update: Perhaps now you understand my holding Washington Post.com to be slightly less than thorough. "Responsibltity"? Are they reading GWB's playbook?
Amendment to the Update: I just cruised by the Washington Post.com piece and they have fixed it. It is 4:08 by my computer and the last time I checked was around 1 pm.