Thursday, November 05, 2009

Negative Campaigns

Someone named Dee left the comment on the last post.

"'People vote for the bad, fearing the worse.'

Where do you come up with this crap?"

That progressives write condescending messages is not surprising. This one struck me as odd. As you see, the notion of people voting for the bad to avoid something worse is the driving premise behind the negative campaign. The negative campaign tells people, you must vote for me because my opponent is worse.

Both parties go negative on a routine basis. There is a lot more press about Republicans going negative. An effective propaganda technique is to use one's partisan opponents as the negative example.

Regardless of which party chooses to go negative, the premise behind the negative campaign is the same.

I prefer to state the premise behind negative campaigns than simply evoking the image of negative campaigns as I think stating the premise highlights why this type of politics keeps leading our nation in the wrong directing. Yes, the negative campaign might help us avoiding making a worst decision, but we still end up making a bad decision.

In the case of health care, the Republican plan has the effect of establishing the Federal Government as the primary regulator of health care...this is counter to the 10th Amendment. Going against the Constitution like that is bad for those of us who like the system of distributed government outlined in the Constitution.

This plan that attempts to hold off the worse by promoting a bad idea fails to get us on a better path.

The reason I wanted to promote my reply to a full post is that I have been thinking a lot about the role of logic in society. Progressives yanked the study of logic from the curriculum generations ago. The primary goal of affirmative rationality is simply to state the reasons behind our actions. Being able to state the reasons behind our actions can help us determine if our actions will lead to a positive outcome. Without familiarity with logic, people simply engage in whatever activities seem effective at the time. Politicians go negative thinking as going negative is an effective tool against a political opponenets. Yet, when we think of the premise behind going negative, we see that the process systematically leads us down a bad road.

In the Bush years, many Republicans won simply because independents feared the Democrats, the Republicans--following their negative strategy--became a mirror image of the Democrats. The Republicans gave up fiscal conservatism and managed to grow the Federal government at the same rate as LBJ.

To get us off the road to socialism, the Republicans have to come up with a better strategy to simply popping up with bad ideas to desparately stave off worse ideas.

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