Are Campaigns Meant To Destroy or Inform

By: Ken Hughes

We assume political candidates spend thousands of dollars in order to inform voters why they should be the candidate chosen to represent them, that’s in a perfect world and this world if far from perfect. Candidates spend vast sums of money doing their best to destroy the reputation of their opponent while protecting their own. What the voters learn from this is that they can’t trust either candidate. They can only assume both are lying and if they lie about their opponent what else will they lie about? Many of the candidates are incumbents who are asking to be returned after having served several previous terms. If these incumbent candidates haven’t been able to get the job done in the past how can they be expected to keep their promises in the future?

As imperfect as the system is it’s better than most, the one and only insurrection this country ever had wasn’t done to change the government but to improve the living conditions of it’s enslaved or sub-class citizens. Americans citizens chose sides, one to free slaves and reunite a nation, the other to preserve a way of life with years of tradition behind it. Because of the politics that followed it took another hundred years would pass after all the battles were over for those who had been enslaved to obtain any resemblance of reality of freedom. Politics is no different today, when the elections are over and the winning candidates take their respective seats of authority they will feel little or no responsibility to those who elected them. Our electoral system is far from perfect but it out shines any other by far. Can it be improved on without stripping it of it’s free expression, it’s doubtful because we can’t trust the “The Strippers.”

As children we are taught not to cheat, in non-professional sports we are taught not to cheat. In fact through out our childhood we are encouraged not to cheat. Immediately upon reaching adulthood we’re taught that deception is the way things work, that cheating is an acceptable practice now that we’ve crossed over into the adult world. No where is this more evident than in politics and campaigning for political office.

The framers of the constitution were aware of man frailties and provided for them as best they could. Yet still giving future generations the freedom of self expression, and with the authority to adjust to the times and still not infringe on the publics freedoms guaranteed by the constitution. Perhaps this is why the framers of the constitution didn’t detail rules dictating precise salutations to every possibility that could arise. They must have had faith only men and women of honor would be allowed to serve in the congress and the presidency of the United States of America. And for the most part of the thousands of men and women who have passed through the chambers of congress and the white house very few have been removed for cause.

Perhaps the framers assumed the voters would be intelligent and informed enough to distinguish between fiction fact and flattery. If “We the People” pay attention to the information available and forgo the influences of the political parties we can make intelligent decisions. We can decide what candidates we believe best represent our positions in the issues. Negative campaigning is a fact that won’t be going away any time soon that doesn’t mean we need to pay attention to it, the voters must look beyond the rhetoric and listen for the candidate’s positions on the issues then vote accordingly. This country belongs to “We the People” not the congress not the president not the bureaucrats and certainly not the special interests and the lobbyists. “We the People” can take control at the ballet box if we choose to do so.

It’s not only the candidates and the media who distort information, in this new electronic age and with the advent of the Internet a new type of information provider has emerged. The Internet Blogger or citizen journalist if you prefer they come with a variety of opinions, most are very convincing in their beliefs however that doesn’t mean all they say is fact. Like all opinions they are based on a personal political bias, they are just opinions subject to question the same as all opinions.

Good luck and good thinking make your 2008 vote count.

When voting in the 2008 election vote your conscience not your party, make your vote count for more than an ego builder for a political party.

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