FEATURED COMMENT – Reject attack ads; political process is too important

Lyndon B. Johnson’s ‘Daisy’ attack ad against Barry Goldwater in the 1964 U.S. presidential election is one of the most famous.

Re: Editorial: ‘Let’s admit we get a kick out of attack ads’

In 1976, Neil Postman argued in Amusing Ourselves To Death, that television was undermining serious political discourse. It was doing so he noted, by reducing debate to short bursts ( 2 minutes on nuclear proliferation). It defined winning a debate by determining who got off the best one liner. It reduced the process to the level of cheap entertainment. Attack ads are the offspring of that reductio ad absurdum.

If there is anything that recent events have shown, it is that our political process cannot be in the hands of small minded angry minds. That is precisely why we should reject attack ads. Our political process is too important not to be taken seriously.


About Mel Rothenburger (5858 Articles) is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

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