Waste

So I read that experts estimate $10 billion will be spent on campaign advertisements in the U.S. presidential election this year.

Most of it, I feel sure, will be spent on television commercials consisting of insults, lies and half-truths about the “other side.” It’s been proven that those are the kinds of ads that deliver results.

Woe to those who watch television and live in purple states.

I keep thinking about that mind-boggling number.

Ten. Billion. Dollars.

Think of how much good could be done with that amount of money.

Sigh.

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28 comments on “Waste

    • Bill says:

      Thanks. The fact that people are willing to spend so much money on trying to influence the outcome of an election suggests to me that they see it as an investment. And that is even more troubling.

      Liked by 2 people

  1. Campaigns should be limited to 2 months with each candidate clearly spelling out what his or her platform is. Anything other than individual campaign contributions should be eliminated and an individuals total contribution to any one candidate limited to $1000. People reaching a certain level of public support should receive a limited amount of public funds to promote their positions. Media should be required to donate equal free time for each hour of purchased time. How’s that for pie in the sky? –Curt

    Liked by 1 person

    • Bill says:

      I’d settle for people turning off the TV when those kinds of ads come on. Once they stop producing votes, they’ll stop buying them.

      Like

      • Or maybe people need a vote-o-meter. Each negative ad an individual sees generates a 5% drop in the likelihood
        that the person would vote for the candidate. My what a change that would create… –Curt

        Like

  2. avwalters says:

    I agree that it’s a waste. Elections should be publicly funded and short. I want candidates to debate in the gymnasiums of local high schools. I want them to shake hands with local voters and look them in the eyes.

    Even worse than the waste, is that so often the funds come from the illicit corporate back channels of influence. Money has perverted our political process and undermined our democracy. Thank God I do not own a television. I couldn’t bear to watch it first hand.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Bill says:

      Well said. It’s all a symptom of the increasing centralization (and corruption) of authority. I think the original idea was for a congressional district to be small enough that the representative and constituents could personally know each other. And that would be the branch with the most power. But what we have instead is a type of oligarchy.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. gatheringplaceseasonfour says:

    already decided my vote – eight years ago

    Like

  4. Yes. Sigh. ❤
    Diana xo

    Like

  5. ain't for city gals says:

    It makes me sad to see all that money wasted…

    Like

  6. Susan says:

    Campaigns and war. The biggest waste of money on earth!

    Like

  7. Laurie Graves says:

    Yes, yes!

    Like

    • Bill says:

      Maybe someone should try running without TV ads. Sadly, that would probably doom their campaign. But if someone could win without them, or if voters penalized candidates who run attack ads, maybe we’d see some change.

      Like

      • Laurie Graves says:

        Also, there must be a distinction between ads that attack a person’s looks or family and ads that attack policies. In my opinion, the former has absolutely no place in a political campaign but the latter is fair game.

        Like

  8. NebraskaDave says:

    Bill, I have not watched any TV debates that seem to have been much too frequent. The news media try their best to whip up an argument among the candidates and never really have in mind to address the issues of the day. I have voted in every election that I could since my 21st birthday and never have I seen any thing like this year’s campaigning. These are the soon to be leaders of our country. God help us. And as you have stated, billions of dollars are spent for the public to listen to grownups verbally fighting each other like bullies in the school yard. I find it totally amazing why any one would want to spend that kind of money to be dragged through the muck and mire of campaigning to be become president. At one time they were known as Statesmen but those days are long past. I’m going out in the garden and plant some thing. At least that remains the same as it has been since the beginning of time.

    Have a great day out in the refocused White Flint Farm garden.

    Like

    • Bill says:

      You’re relatively lucky there in Nebraska, where the presidential vote is a foregone conclusion. Virginia is considered a “swing state.” The population is very evenly divided and the middle of the road independents determine the winner. So a huge amount of money gets dumped into ads here to try to get their votes.

      They probably wouldn’t want my vote. I’ve voted in 9 presidential elections, and the candidate I voted for has only won once.

      Like

  9. unfortunately, we all must be in the minority. I refuse to vote for anyone who campaigns negatively.
    10 billion could make a start on the national debt…

    Like

    • Bill says:

      Unfortunately studies show that negative ads work. That’s why they run them. But wouldn’t it be great if we matured enough as a society that we were collectively too intelligent to be duped by those kind of ads. Maybe someday in the future people will look back in amazement at the ads of our day.

      Like

  10. John Campbell says:

    sigh.

    On Sun, Apr 10, 2016 at 6:17 PM, Practicing Resurrection wrote:

    > Bill posted: “So I read that experts estimate $10 billion will be spent on > campaign advertisements in the U.S. presidential election this year. Most > of it, I feel sure, will be spent on television commercials consisting > of insults, lies and half-truths about the “othe” >

    Like

  11. Dearest Bill,
    Yes, that is the thinking of you and me; down to earth and nature and life loving people. There are others though that think they are way above us and think they’re the Elite that can stuff things down our throat however they like to.
    It is disgusting indeed that for the greed to power one is willing to pay that much. Never used in a sincere and honest way and not for the benefit of all people.
    Our platform is more humble and more solid I would say!
    Let’s pray that the world will not go down with further losing the moral compass.
    Sending you hugs,
    Mariette

    Like

    • Bill says:

      Thanks Mariette and back at you.
      All that money is directed at the fairly small number of us who aren’t able to figure out on our own which candidate best reflects our values and ideologies. But that small percentage of people are the swing votes, and they can be won over by false and misleading claims. Unfortunately.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. MansWhirld says:

    It seems to me that only party members should choose their candidates at their convention. These expensive, forever long primaries are really pointless since the convention delegates choose the nominee anyway. They could do all this on their own without wasting billions of worthless dollars, choose their nominee and THEN spend only 1 or 2 billion for the campaign.

    Like

    • Bill says:

      That’s the way it was until fairly recently. But it seems that democratizing the nomination process won’t necessarily improve the quality of the nominees.

      Like

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