Paying for His Sins (With Other People's Money)

How’s that “different kind of politics” thing going? About like so:

For all of his hopes about bipartisanship, Barack Obama has the most polarized early job approval ratings of any president in the past four decades. The 61-point partisan gap in opinions about Obama’s job performance is the result of a combination of high Democratic ratings for the president — 88% job approval among Democrats — and relatively low approval ratings among Republicans (27%).

The excuse on the left will be that Republicans are divisive, or racist, or both. The excuse on the right will be that Obama is a liar, a cheat, a failure, Jimmy Carter II, or all four. Honestly, though, I think what we have here is an honest disagreement on principle.

Obama is governing by his principles: Tax and tax and spend and spend and spend. Oh, and borrow and borrow and borrow and borrow to the point of theft. The left loves this stuff, hence the high poll numbers.

Conservatives, naturally, are pissed off about that. And before the left starts shouting about THE HYPOCRISY! (thank you, Jeff Goldstein), liberals should remember that conservatives abandoned President Bush (both of them, actually) in droves when he proved to be an out-of-control big-government guy. Which explains Bush’s and Obama’s low approval ratings with conservatives.

Disagreement over important issues is important to democracy — and that’s exactly what we have here.