Last year’s presidential campaign broke a record for campaign spending. This has prompted a lot of criticism that while understandable, misses the point.
We get all flustered about the amount of money that political campaigns raise and spend. But we give little thought as to why they have to do it.
For the most part, the American public (that’s us) are disengaged from the process. We are so busy working, taking care of our families, dealing with every day life that we have not made the selection of our civil leaders a priority.
Think about it…. Can you name the members of your local school board? And these are people you trust your kids to for 8 hours a day. But how many of us can name the final contestants on Survivor or American Idol?
And since we won’t pay attention to the races, candidates are forced to bring the campaigns to us. They fill our mailboxes and clutter the airwaves with political ads… all in an attempt to catch our interest.
And we are full of excuses as to why we don’t pay attention… “I don’t know the candidates.” “I’m too busy.” NONSENSE!
If you can put in hours planning for your fantasy football draft, you take some time to read up on the candidates and their issues. And it should be easy. We have access to more information at the touch of a button than any generation before us. You should be able to find out who is running for dog catcher in Beaulah, Wyoming.
Our system is dependent on you and I doing our job. When we don’t take the time to inform ourselves about what candidates stand for and actively support those who share our values, we open ourselves up to being led around by expensive campaign advertising.
Here’s the truth… The only thing that will put an end to the influence of money in politics is an informed and engaged electorate.