Negative, positive or just accurate?

Thursday, August 7, 2008 at 0:53 | Posted in Election, Politics, USA | 4 Comments
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As you can see on this clip, the US electoral campaigns are becoming negative and that goes for both sides:

I barely know the names of Whitney Britney Spears and Paris Hilton. I have no idea why they are being considered as “celebrities”. I am also not interested in getting to know it as I very much suspect that whatever it is they have done or not, it has no relevance in context of my life.

That is less than I can say about Barack Obama and John McCain. Since one of them is more than likely to become the president of the most powerful country in the World, it would be foolish not to pay attention to what they stand for, although I have never even visited that country and have no intention to do so. Which ever wins the US election, he is going to be too important and powerful to be ignored like I can safely ignore Whitney Britney Spears and Paris Hilton and get away with it.

In an ideal World campaigns would focus on the issues. They would rather seek to explain why their own candidate is a good choice than try to smear their opponents. But the World is not ideal, is it? The temptation to score cheap points can quite understandably grow too big to make the campaigns stay within decency and a civilized tone of arguing for their case.

On the other hand, how much can we trust that positive campaigns deliver an accurate image of what a candidate really stands for? As Brooks Jackson, director of FactCheck.org, comments for the BBC:

“Political scientists and communications scholars will tell you that negative ads tend to have more information in them than positive ads,” he says.

“We see positive ads that are false or misleading, too.”

Maybe there is something in that statement. If a negative message is accurate and truthful, it should certainly be told. That would be less harmful than delivering a positive message about the own candidate on false prerequisites.

The hard part, of course, is to determin which message you can trust, be it positive or negative. Which is why it always pays out to have a critical attitude towards anything you read or hear about.

4 Comments »

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  1. Allow me to help you out here. Mrs. Spears first name is “Britney”, and she’s known for excreting profound gems of wisdoms such as «I am for the death penalty. Who commits terrible acts must get a fitting punishment. That way he learns the lesson for the next time.».

  2. Thanks for the info although I could have lived without it. Until the next time, that is. I corrected the first name of this Danube of thought.😛

  3. I’m always glad when I can help out. Or, as in this case, add to the confusion. 🙂

  4. Confusion? You mean to say that this young lady is running for US president on the National Rifle Association‘s ticket?


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