The two parties are at it again. The Republican Governors Association is running an ad against Mayor Hickenlooper, the democratic candidate for governor, trying to link him with the unpopular Bill Ritter, but do we really need this? What is the purpose of the ad? What will be the result of the ad in the end?

The purpose of the ad is simple, to paint candidate Hickenlooper in such a negative light that people will vote against him, therefore helping the republican candidate to win the election. But the democrats are going to respond, most likely creating an ad that will attempt to demonize the republican candidate. And so it will go, on and on, ad after ad, the good people of Colorado will be inundated with negative ad after negative ad, and they will be left to wonder; which candidate is the lesser of two evils.

That is our two party system in a nutshell. Demonize the other party’s candidate to the point that your candidate looks less evil than the other party’s candidate. All in the name of “winning”. I ask; what do we win in the end? No matter which candidate wins in the end, the people in both parties are left with the perceptions from the campaign pounding each has received. So we end up with a dysfunctional ability to govern. Democrats won’t listen or be open to anything a republican winner has to say, and the Republicans will not listen to or be open to anything a democratic winner has to say.

People are so disillusioned with the political process, and yet we are told that negative ads are an effective campaign strategy. These ads may be effective for the party that wins, but not for the people, and the ability to govern. Negative ads are an excuse and an easy way to campaign. The most effective way to win a campaign is to convince people through argument and debate that your positions are right for the direction of the state. Topic by topic, vetted in a forum, not bound by commercial time restraints, but real open and elongated debate. Where people have the opportunity to hear every issue discussed ad-nauseam to the point of conclusion. So why don’t politicians do that?

Simple; the people are not willing to sit and listen to it, and the media does everything in bits and bytes. We the people are partly responsible because we don’t do our homework and are not willing to invest in vetting candidates or protecting our freedom. The media is responsible because they play into the two party horse race, and never give anyone else a chance to be heard. They limit the debate instead of nurturing it.

So how does it change? I don’t know but the first step is for people to do more homework. My campaign is an example. I receive dozens of notes encouraging me and saying they respect and admire what I’m doing. But when it comes down to brass tax, people are not willing to take the effort to support alternative campaigns. We are lazy as an electorate and have been duped into believing what the two parties dish out. There are many alternatives to the two parties but the effort to make the change seems too much for most.

The two parties have been losing members for years and there are more people that find themselves unaffiliated than ever before. That’s a good thing, but leaving the party system is not enough. If you want to end the negative ads that divide us as a people, you need to punish the people that are doing it and support alternatives. Maybe I’m not the right candidate but there will be no change to this divisiveness unless we all get involved to change it…

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