President Obama’s approval ratings are dismal. Five and half years ago, of course, it was all so different. Back then, Obama was popular, and many political commentators were convinced that he walked on water. Remember?:

Mr. Obama is like a championship chess player, always several moves ahead of friend and foe alike. He’s smart, deft, elegant and subtle. While Lindsey Graham was behaving like a 6-year-old on the Senate floor and Pete Sessions was studying passages in his Taliban handbook, Mr. Obama and his aides were assessing what’s achievable in terms of stimulus legislation and how best to get there.

That was written by Bob Herbert, a columnist for the New York Times at the time.

Today brought this rebuttal from former world chess champion Garry Kasparov:

Checkmate!

Editor’s note: We have corrected the spelling of Garry Kasparov’s first name. We apologize to Mr. Kasparov for the error.