Iraq Fatalities, Gas Prices Plummet Just in Time for Election Day

Tin foil hat time: It would be considered paranoiac or, at best, extremely cynical, to suggest that people at the top of the Bush-Cheney administration engineered events — or, as Karl Rove once put it, “created a reality” — in which both the deaths of U.S. service members and the price of gasoline dropped precipitously just in time for voting in the 2008 election to begin.
Imagine the political landscape right now, less than 48 hours before voting ends, if the collapse of the financial industry in late September had not upended John McCain’s campaign. With Iraq and gas prices no longer issues driving the campaign, the odds in the presidential race would heavily favor the Republican ticket.
On the other hand, the only other explanation — that it is just a happy coincidence — is even harder to believe. Having studied the tactics of the Bush-Cheney regime for nearly eight years, we know that secretly manipulating events for their own political benefit is the rare thing this crowd does well.

Here are two facts:

US Deaths in Iraq Plunge to Wartime Low in October:

U.S. deaths in Iraq fell in October to their lowest monthly level of the war, matching the record low of 13 fatalities suffered in July. Iraqi deaths fell to their lowest monthly levels of the year. Eight of the 13 Americans died in combat, most of them in northern Iraq where al-Qaida and other Sunni insurgent groups remain active. The U.S. military suffered 25 deaths in September and 23 in August.

Gas Prices Below $3 in Some Areas:

Some areas are now reporting average gasoline prices below the $3-a-gallon threshold as price continue to fall in the area, according to the Automobile Club of Southern California’s Weekend Gas Watch.

The average price of self-serve regular gasoline in the Los Angeles-Long Beach area is $3.019 per gallon, which is 20.4 cents less than last week, 59 cents lower than last month, and 12 cents under last year…

“For the last two weeks, we’ve seen drops of 3-4 cents per day,” Auto Club spokesperson Jeffrey Spring said in a statement. “The downward pace has certainly accelerated, and it’s difficult to tell when or where it will stop.”

Imagine the political landscape right now, less than 48 hours before voting ends, if the collapse of the financial industry in late September had not upended John McCain’s campaign. In that scenario, with U.S. fatalities at new lows and gas prices no longer a source of worry for voters, the odds in the presidential race would heavily favor the Republican ticket. At worst, even with Sarah Palin weighing McCain down, polls would probably show him winning by a slim majority.

So is this state of affairs a grand conspiracy thwarted by “real” reality — or just a felicitous happenstance that favors the interests of the American people over those of the ruling class? Like so much else that has transpired over the past eight years, we will probably never know.

4 Responses »

  1. […] Iraq Fatalities, Gas Prices Plummet Just in Time for Election Day […]

  2. Sharky Dowd November 3, 2008 @ 11:45 am

    Gas prices also fell in 2004 before that election. I thought then and believe now that oil companies lower the prices as part of their lobbying efforts to keep the Republicans in office. Whatever conversation occurs between the oil industry employees in elected office and the oil employees at the oil companies is pretty much beside the point. I do also believe the Iraq situation is not a coincidence and perhaps recall a similar dynamic in ’04 also …

    That said, I am so thankful that as of right now there has not been a “surprise” of some sort sneaked in to upset this election. It seemed so likely based on the crimes and atrocities already perpetrated by the bad guys whose names shall not be mentioned by me …

    I was wrong about that happening, and I was completely wrong about Barack Obama. He has run an excellent campaign and hopefully is about to be elected. This H. Clinton supporter was WRONG and is glad for it!

    The excitement here in North Carolina is amazing. For our state to be in play in this election, and hopefully reap the rewards down-ticket as well, is stunning.

    Voting this past Saturday was a joy. In the best spirit possible I intend to keep feeling that joy and visualize a safe, fair, smooth election day and early night tomorrow with an Obama landslide.

    Thanks Pensito Review!

  3. Lori B November 3, 2008 @ 2:40 pm

    GREAT….more people will be able to get out to vote for Obama

  4. Jeannine H November 5, 2008 @ 1:25 pm

    I agree that Prez Bush has not been our best president and probably “pulled some strings” to bring down gas prices in time for the election. But, I also look at the timing of the “financial crisis” and why that occurred at the time it did. The ruling class, as you call them, also rule from Congress and also can manipulate what happens before an election. I don’t look at the meltdown on Wall Street with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac as just coincidence, but an alarming failure on the duty of the Democratic-led majority in Congress to listen to President Bush (and John McCain) TWO YEARS AGO about the need for MORE regulations in regards to Fannie and Freddie’s housing policies. Barney Frank was the one who pushed for a liberal financial policy in regards to offering “affordable” housing to minorities, whether they could afford to maintain their mortgages or not. There is probably room for blame enough to go around, but I wouldn’t necessarily put all the blame on the Republican administration. In fact, it was in the Democratic Party’s favor to not face the challenge of our housing market over two years ago and who might, just might, have wanted this economic downturn to put a blight on President Bush’s presidency in order to gain power in the White House this election. Our political “powers that be” seem to have too much power when it comes to how “reality” affects the rest of us.

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