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re: Iraq, what else?

It would seem that things are going much better in Iraq, in spite of what you, the media, and the intelligencia may say. Witness the report from SecDef Rumsfeld (via Hugh Hewitt):

• U.S. forces have turned over control of about 29 military bases to the Iraqis.

• Baghdad's once-violent Haifa Street is now more peaceful and under the control of an Iraqi army battalion.

• The Iraqi army has seven division and 31 brigade headquarters in operation, compared with none in July 2004.

• The number of Iraq army battalions "in the fight" has grown to 95, compared to five in August 2004.

On Monday, a U.S. military spokesman in Baghdad said the number was 100, plus 30 battalions of Iraqi Special Police. Pentagon spokesman Maj. Todd Vician said the 100 total includes five Iraqi special forces battalions.

The boys in the fight are confident. They believe in the mission. And a plurality of Americans agree with them.

And on top of that, the NYTimes is running a page one story that say the economy is just ducky. In fact, it's outstanding. Running on all cylinders:

Gasoline is cheaper than it was before Hurricane Katrina slammed into New Orleans. Consumer confidence jumped last month and new home sales hit a record. The stock market has been rising. Even the nation's beleaguered factories appear to be headed for a happy holiday season.

By most measures, the economy appears to be doing just fine. No, scratch that, it appears to be booming.

Then later:

After adding an average of 202,000 jobs a month for the first seven months of the year, companies hit a slow patch late this summer. In August, businesses created just 148,000 jobs followed by a decline of 8,000 in September after Katrina. And just when economists expected a big bounce back in October, the Labor Department reported a net increase of just 56,000 jobs.

Analysts are eagerly awaiting the Labor Department's next jobs report, out Friday, ... Economists expect 220,000 new jobs will be created, according to a survey by Bloomberg News.

Then there's that inconvenient fact that Bob "if it's a presidential scandal I'm in the thick of it" Woodward who completely blows a hole in the indictment of Scooter Libby.

Don't you just hate that? I guesss 06/08 is starting to look less and less like a slam dunk ...

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