The nation's mood? Lower than it's been in years. Fully 13% MORE Americans feel the economy is getting worse than last month. It's hardly the kind of news that a president (or his advisors) want to get as they embark on a reelection campaign.
But who can blame Americans for feeling cranky and dispirited? After all, it's perfectly clear that their leader does. Recently, a snappish president has castigated his political opposition, whined about the Oval Office phone system, and mourned the loss of his anonymity.
With the numbers that are surfacing in the newest poll, the President has good reason to be feeling testy. But the problem with him displaying his pique so prominently is that it tends to intensify the "malaise" of regular Americans -- and worse yet, it represents a tacit admission that he's unhappy, concerned and frustrated . . . which signals to a watching public that the government's "captain" doesn't know how to right the ship.
Americans are right to be frustrated. The man who came to power promising "hope and change" has seen his recipe for government expansion do nothing but bankrupt the country and lower public morale. Now, in a bitter irony, President Obama is reduced to arguing for more of the same -- more taxes, more government, more of HIM -- even as the apostles of real change and government reform give him the first intellectual and political run for his money that he's ever known in his earlier, charmed political career.