Two weeks ago we were “celebrating” the death of Osama Bin Laden, attempting to start pro-U.S.A. chants on subway trains (some of us), patting our commander in chief on the proverbial back for his courage and determination — not to mention follow-through! — in capturing and killing the FBI’s Most Wanted Terrorist, with the help of some brave SEALs of course. Remember that? Praise for Obama and the administration continued for days and weeks following, and Obama’s approval rating hit a high of as much as 60 percent. But now, according to a Gallup poll released today, the “bump President Obama received after the killing of Osama bin Laden more than two weeks ago in Pakistan has vanished completely,” reports the National Journal.
This seems to indicate that our nation’s collective consciousness currently has about a two-week window in which we may praise and applaud before we move onto the next thing, in this case, worrying about the economy (see “debt ceiling”). Now Obama’s approval rating is back to a “normal” 46 percent, which is the same as it was in the last tracking poll prior to Bin Laden’s death. Compare that to the “old days,” for example, when George W. Bush was president and Saddam Hussein was captured — his 15-point bump lasted seven weeks. Our memories just aren’t what they used to be, or we’re getting old and cranky, or something.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on May 16, 2011