Jeff Pearlman

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Although the actual presidential election remains nearly half a year away, political bullshit has already overtaken our nation. Advertisement after advertisement. Slam after slam. I am ridiculously sick of it, and it’ll only get worse.

I blame money.

Money ruins so many things, and it has certainly ruined proper political discourse in this nation. Essentially, what we have in 2012 is a (relatively) small number of ultra-rich people funneling millions and millions and millions of dollars into campaigns. Though they would argue the dough is spent trying to “help America,” that’s not true. The dough is spent trying to brainwash you.

I know … I know—I sound paranoid. I get it. What I mean is, political advertising counts on a message being repeated so often that you, the receiver, ultimately state it as your own (original) thought.

Ad: Barack Obama is against education.

Ad played again: Barack Obama is against education.

Ad played again and again and again …

Barack Obama is against education.

Barack Obama is against education.

Barack Obama is against education.

Barack Obama is against education.

Barack Obama is against education.

Ultimately, me: Barack Obama is against education.

This is exactly how it works—and both ways. The Democrats will tell you things about Mitt Romney. Some will be true. Some will be false. But the ultimate goal is to convince you (facts often be damned) in 30 seconds that Mitt Romney is so and so; that Barack Obama is so and so.

Truth be told, we know precious little about either candidate. Instead, we know what we’ve been told to know.

Winner: Money.

  • Bobby Fetter

    Why don’t you investigate where this money goes and I am being serious. Think about it….they said both campaign’s will spend about 1 billion dollars, so why is today’s jobs report so dismal? The bulk of the money is to pay radio and tv stations to air the ads, I get that. Money spent to create an produce ads requires hiring of consultants and focus groups as well as actors and cameramen. A campaign also spends to rent office space, pay for electricity, internet, office equipment, catering, etc…..So why is it, with potentially $2 billion being spent on presidential campaigns alone, not to mention EVERY member of Congress and a third of the Senate spending even more millions, do we have such a weak jobs report and unemployment at 8%. And finally, why are people stupid enough to VOLUNTEER for these campaigns with all of this money being thrown around in such a weak economy??

  • That’s former LA Laker coach Jack McKinney above, I admit, looking a bit presidential. Jack is FOR education!

  • Andrew

    Those funneling the money, conceivably, would be the winners, yes?

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Once again, Jeff Pearlman has produced an exhaustively researched, elegantly written book that re-creates one of the most colorful and memorable teams of the modern era. No basketball fan's bookshelf will be complete without it.

— Seth Davis, author of Wooden: A Coach's Life