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Wes Side Stories: Thoughts on the coming storm of election season
by Wesley Dugle Apr 22, 2012 4:49 pm Tags: 2012 election, Bill Mahr, Bill Oreilly, Brack obama, election season, elections, Keith Olberman, media, Megyn Kelly, Mitt Romney, Political discourse, politics, President, presidentcy, Wes Side Stories, Wesley Dugle
Wesley Dugle is the Spartan Daily Opinion Editor. His column "Wes Side Stories" appears each Monday.
To slightly paraphrase Ned Stark from “Game of Thrones” — “Brace yourselves, election season is coming.”
Yes, with pro-life senator Rick Santorum effectively “aborting” his presidential bid and Ron Paul wallowing away in obscurity, the Republican nomination process is all but finished.
Now Republican governor Mitt “Money Bags” Romney takes on Democratic President Barack “The Debt” Obama in a no holds barred mudslinging fest for the Presidency.
Prepare for a non-stop political war from now until November as the nominees and political pundits alike trade barbs and try to bribe swing voters to one side or the other.
A long time ago I used to care about this process.
During the 2004 elections, when senator John Kerry faced incumbent George W. Bush for the presidency, I was really into politics.
I was firmly a blue-blooded liberal back then and despite not being old enough to vote I actively campaigned amongst my friends and even their parents to vote for Kerry.
In 2008, I again got into the political scene, phone-banking for the Obama party and casting my first vote in my freshman year for the man who would become our president.
Nearly four years later, though, I’m not nearly as enthusiastic about politics as I used to be, and you can thank the volatile political climate of the past few years for that.
While I wouldn’t say Obama is a particularly bad president, he largely failed to bring the “hope” and bi-partisan politics I was expecting after he was elected.
His inability to fulfill campaign promises, like closing Guantanamo Bay and cutting Bush tax cuts, are among the many things that have made me jaded about his presidency.
The Republicans have not helped their side either.
Their entire campaign strategy since Obama got elected has been too spam voters with as much negative criticism of the president as possible, no matter if it’s fact or not.
Some claims are true, but frivolous attacks such as questioning Obama’s birthplace and attacking his Ivy League school background has made me even more jaded about party politics these days.
Now with the election season about to begin in earnest, we can expect 24/7 coverage of these two politicians trading attacks, questioning one another’s credibility and character and both trying to prove they are more American than the other.
It’s going to be a shit storm, in short.
Most of all, the problem with this process is going to be the media coverage.
Expect media blow-hards and political pundits alike ranting and arguing their side to one another and increasing the negative tension between blue and red voters.
It’s pretty much Crips and Bloods at this point.
There are ways to make this process more clean and less divisive.
For one, I would stop having media and political pundit attention hogs commentate on each candidates platform.
The voters can’t make an unbiased call on a nominee’s views if they're being filtered through Bill Maher’s angry tirades or Bill O'Reilly’s “Spin Zone.”
We don’t need to hear the opinions of people who will do anything to make their side look better than the other.
Next I would encourage the media to simply report each candidate’s platform without giving voice or opinion on it.
I don’t want to hear what Megyn Kelly or Rachel Maddow have to say about ObamaCare, or RomneyCare for that matter — just give me the bare facts and I’ll form my own damn opinion.
Next I would require candidates to ONLY talk about their views and not the views of their opponent, until debate time.
Too often do candidates spend 99 percent of their campaign money making ads purely aimed at destroying the other’s views and choices that we don’t even know what the hell their views are on those issues.
Lastly, I would cut Super Political Action Campaigns because the money they garner to make ads is not good for politics.
The amount of spam voters receive through these non-stop ads cannot possibly promote political balance or unbiased-ness.
You see the problem is all this mud-slinging and negative ad campaigns just creates bigger and bigger divides amongst our nation, to the point where bringing up politics in an average conversation between a conservative and liberal could turn into a full-on fist-fight of words.
It doesn’t need to be this way.
Politics can have healthy discussion if the media and our politicians can rework the way we use political discourse.
If the media can promote unbiased coverage and politicians can focus on themselves more than each other then we voters could actually think for ourselves and make our own opinions instead of them making it for us.
Alas, this is probably a pipe dream and more than likely we’ll be treated to several months of party hackery and bad media coverage.
So once again, my friends, brace yourselves. Election season is coming.
Ted Rudow III, MA ·
The total debt of the U.S. alone is 14 trillion dollars! It's hard to even conceive of how much money that really is, but if you spent one million dollars every day it would take over 8000 years to spend three trillion dollars! The U.S. has gotten to such a totally hopeless, bankrupt state that they know they will never be able to pay off that debt! And yet they continue spending far more than they earn in taxes, getting more in debt every year! To continue their false prosperity they have borrowed heavily from the U.S. Federal Bank!--And where does the Federal Bank get this money? Well, they just print it!...Billions upon billions of paper dollars worth nothing more than the paper they're printed on, & no more valuable than the counterfeit dollars printed by criminals! It's like trying to pull wealth out of an empty hat! But wealth must be made from something of actual value! Only nothing can be made out of nothing!
Ted Rudow III,MA
Class of 1996