I’m sick of the political ads this year, disgusted with the individuals, organizations, and agencies that produced them. Good riddance.
I voted (by mail), and hope that there will be a big turnout – but if 2012 vomits up anything like what we’ve been doused with this year, maybe some secret organization should fund a national ‘stay home and don’t vote’ campaign. If nobody voted because the ad campaigns were pathetic and offensive– that might be a good thing. (Yes, I’m being a bit tongue-in-cheek … maybe.)
I’m told that government loves to waste money. You could make a case in some instances. However, I don’t have to be told that business hates to waste money (unless they can write it off). Imagine if there were no ROI for political spots. Goodbye, mindless and negative ads.
The history of political campaign advertising isn’t a pretty one – but that doesn’t mean it has to stay that way. Everybody seems to ‘want change’ – so let’s change. One way might be to hire more professional speechwriters, and less low-level copywriters. Some speechwriters are smarmy – but as a rule speechwriters know how to sculpt messages that truly reflect the policies and beliefs of candidates, can clearly explain the intent of ballot propositions/initiatives.
There will always be attack ads, but let them be on the fringes (and by fringe groups).
However … don’t think these folks simply play patty-cakes. Spirited discussions ricochet every which way on every page. You won’t be bored – or outraged.
Political advertising could learn some lessons from Pundit Wire.