One of the biggest tasks we faced during our years in school was memorization.
I remember my teachers in grade school, junior high and high school sending us home with the admonition to “memorize” something we were studying at the time. It was a drudgery that we grudgingly accepted, even spending parts of our cherished weekends in the task. Over and over and over, we read the words we were expected to memorize. Perhaps it was those long-ago assignments that still carry over today. Or, is it just I?
After weeks and weeks and weeks of political ads on television and on the radio, I find myself able to pretty much recite word-for-word the messages that have been pounded into my head during that time. And, it’s not something of which I’m proud.
All of what is said in those ads is, of course, self-serving. Much of it, we’ve learned through the years, contains only half-truths. All of it is geared to earn votes in one way or another – either by convincing voters to cast their votes for one candidate, or to vote against another.
The saddest thing of all is that much of the campaign money is not spent by a candidate’s own campaign; rather it’s spent by outside groups, almost all of that money coming from outside of Iowa. I know I’m not the only one who’s just about had it up to his eyeballs with all the so-called important information thrown my way.
Now, I realize that much of what we’ve been hearing lately is coming from the Republican side because that’s where the contested primaries lie this year. But, both sides are just as guilty. Once the November slates are set, count on just as many ads from both parties.
You can thank the Supreme Court for most of it. If each candidate could spend only the money he/she could raise, it would be bad enough. But, our highest court has seen fit to allow money from Political Action Committees to infiltrate the process without monetary limitations. Personally, I’m sick of all that out-of-state money being brought into our state in an effort to influence our voters in our elections.
Just let us be!
We’re not idiots in Iowa, although I sometimes think we vote like idiots. We don’t need your out-of-state money telling us how to vote. If we’re going to be idiots at the ballot box, let us do it our own way.
We don’t want you!
Now, there is some hope At last we can regain some of our sanity, knowing there will be a few weeks of respite from the barrage of political advertisements. It won’t last long, though. November is not that far away. We can all count on millions of dollars flowing into our state as big money tries to influence our votes. I prefer to say they’re trying to “buy” votes, not influence voters.
I’ve yet to meet anyone who actually plans to sit down in front of a television set with a freshly-popped bowl of corn with anticipation on his face as he eagerly awaits the many political advertisements to follow.
Democrats and Republicans haven’t agreed on much lately, at least since the Tea Party infiltrated Washington, D.C. But, this is one thing I believe that is universally disliked by both parties. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could convince our Supreme Court to think the same way?
Until then, the only happy Iowans are those television ad salesmen who rake in the millions.