- The Washington Times - Wednesday, June 30, 2004

Bubba’s mind

Perhaps it should have been titled “The Former First Family Meets the Shrink.”

That’s the subject matter of an intriguing new book, “The Clintons Meet Freud: A Psychohistory of Bill, Hillary and Chelsea,” written by psychiatrist Dr. Paul Lowinger.

The book examines former President Bill Clinton’s “unconscious mind and personality according to the methods of Freud and Jung,” the book’s publisher tells us. “Clinton’s sadomasochism, narcissism, Oedipus complex, fear of death and his sexuality are central to the story of his accomplishments and mistakes.”

Dr. Lowinger, who worked 40 years in the psychiatry field and has written extensively on mental health in China, wrote this book because he was fascinated by the relationship between the Clintons’ quest for social justice and their opportunism and was unable to “stop wondering what Freud would have said about the Clintons.”

Fool findings

Been polled yet about your choice for president in the 2004 election?

Herewith some sound advice before you agree to participate with the “pollster.” First, knowing the person or firm that’s conducting the poll will tell you about its quality.

“Polls are conducted by well-known national polling firms, as well as by other, far less-skilled companies,” says the Voter’s Guide to Election Polls, written by Michael W. Traugott and Paul J. Lavrakas, the latter a senior methodologist for Nielsen Media Research.

The polls conducted by the less experienced prompted campaign consultant Harrison Hickman to observe: “Any fool can become a pollster, and many have.”

Secondly, the authors point out that many news organizations — newspapers to television and radio stations — “are enamored of polls as a news source.” How’s this a problem?

In this age of modern technology, “one can disseminate an awful lot of bad data very quickly … to the news business,” warns the guide, which says it is the responsibility of reporters “to serve as gatekeepers for data quality.”

Finally, don’t put a lot of weight in telephone “call-in” polls or Internet polling.

“Similar to audience call-in polls … Internet pop-up polls are unreliable,” says the guide. “There is no way to know anything about the representativeness of the ‘sample’ of respondents who fill out the set of questions and thus their value as a source of information about election preferences or other public opinion is essentially zero.”

Latest poll

If T-shirt sales are an indication, President Bush will win handily in November.

“A D.C. sidewalk vendor who gave her name as Sandra and was selling T-shirts on 17th Street NW between New York Avenue and F Street told me … that she sold seven T-shirts that featured ‘Bush-Cheney 2004’ and only two featuring ‘Kerry 2004.’”

So relays Steve A. Brown of Springfield, who says: “I think [Bush aide] Karl Rove should check in with Sandra on a regularly basis. That could be cheaper than hiring pollsters.”

Reagan note

We’ve written about various proposals to place Ronald Reagan’s portrait on any number of U.S. coins, which has angered some Democrats who don’t want to erase the images of Franklin Delano Roosevelt and John Fitzgerald Kennedy from the dime or half-dollar.

But what about paper money?

Rep. J.D. Hayworth, Arizona Republican, has introduced legislation to place the face of Mr. Reagan on the front side of every $10 bill printed after Dec. 31.

“Ronald Reagan earned a place among America’s greatest presidents,” says Mr. Hayworth. “Printing his likeness on the $10 bill is a fitting tribute to a leader who inspired the forces of freedom to victory over the evils of communism, won the Cold War and restored America’s economic vitality.”

The $10 bill now features Alexander Hamilton, a founding father, the first secretary of the Treasury and major author of the Federalist Papers. Mr. Hayworth’s legislation would require Treasury Secretary John W. Snow to redesign the face of the $10 note with Mr. Reagan’s likeness.

No reaction yet from the Alexander Hamilton fan club.

John McCaslin, whose column is nationally syndicated, can be reached at 202/636-3284 or jmccaslin@washingtontimes.com.

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