Talk about low expectations. I’m always excited when the Globe’s national political reporting rises, however briefly, above the mediocre. Today (Oct. 4) was not one of those days. On the front page, Brian C. Mooney’s story “Obama gaining crucial ground” is accompanied by 4 electoral maps, 2 of which purport to show the current situation. But the map on page one shows Obama “close in the polls” in Ohio, Virgina, North Carolina and Florida while the map on page A6 shows “McCain leaning” in Ohio, Virginia, North Carolina and Florida, with New Hampshire a “tossup.” Mooney’s text seems unrelated to neither of these maps. This is at the least uninformative and more likely downright confusing. But it’s the best that the Globe (“Owned by moguls, written by interns”) can manage these days.