Posts Tagged ‘Mormon’

Mark Hemmingway at NRO has made an excellent case as to why we NEED “voter education ads” otherwise known as “negative ads” or “contrast ads”. I can’t even begin to capture the essence of this the way Mark does, so let me highlight the best of this article. But it’s one that needs to be read in it’s entirety when you have a chance.

It’s hard to determine what kind of stunt Mike Huckabee was trying to pull when he unveiled his proposed negative ad against Mitt Romney for the assembled media on Monday. He did so not, of course, before he oh-so-magnanimously explained to the assembled press that he was above negative campaign tactics and had pulled the proposed ad from Iowa TV stations.

Was this dissembling a disingenuous tactic proposed by Huckabee’s occasionally shifty campaign manager Ed Rollins? Or was it the Baptist preacher evincing a sincere desire to not be pushed into running a dirty campaign? The media was certainly credulous about the stunt, though I think Mike Huckabee’s motivations are almost beside the point…

…As far as I can tell, there is nothing wrong with them. And yet, the stigma is so bad that the Romney campaign has insisted on referring to their Huckabee attacks as “contrast ads.” That’s a fairly cowardly description. Make no mistake, the impetus of the ads that Romney has been running recently in Iowa is to tear Huckabee down rather than build Romney up. The better euphemism would be that they are “voter education ads.” However off-putting the aesthetics of such ads are — with their unflattering black and white photos and dissonant piano chords — negative campaign ads are just about the only occasion voters are offered any real facts or substantive information about a candidate…

…However, somewhere along the line, the media and the electorate at large have become comfortable with the idea that people interviewing for the toughest job in the world should not be judged in relative terms. Instead, elections have become rather like pageants — candidates are allowed to make their case individually, but are not permitted by the rules of etiquette to go after one another. It’s as if they think they can sashay down the catwalk, hoping that guest judge Erik Estrada is impressed enough by the interview segment in which they rattled off their five-point plan to partition Iraq and share oil revenues, to overcome the lackluster score from their trumpet rendition of the theme from Star Wars in the talent competition. That last bit may seem like a joke, but Huckabee showed up on Leno the night before the Iowa caucuses playing his bass with The Tonight Show band. Bootsy he is not, but it was still a shrewd move. Remember when Bill Clinton went on Arsenio and played saxophone and George W. Bush started speaking Spanish on the campaign trail? The media astonishment was comparable to coming home and discovering the family dog was in the middle of weatherproofing the deck…

The coarseness of American culture, manifested by even its cable news programs, is a topic of substantial commentary. Yet somehow the media has also accepted as axiomatic, the idea that negative ads somehow are offensive to the electorate at large, and especially the genteel Midwestern dispositions of Iowa voters.

Emphasis added:

If Huckabee won because Iowans are easily off-put by Romney’s negativity, we really need to do something about the primary schedule such that we aren’t stuck with Hawkeyes’ delicate sensibilities determining the leader of the free world in every election. Perhaps the national parties could be convinced with the right ad campaign: “Iowa … wrong on corn subsidies… wrong on winter weather… wrong on the Byzantine electoral selection process… WRONG FOR AMERICA!”

But obviously, Iowans — and others — can handle the truth that comes with negative ads. Otherwise they wouldn’t be so darn effective and politicians wouldn’t use them. That’s why, like clockwork, we turn on the TV every November and find ourselves staring at grainy photos of some schmuck in a suit angrily pointing his finger at us while randomly selected pejorative adjectives from local newspapers dissolve slowly on and off the screen.

More than anything, we say we want politicians to be honest. And yet, we make them smile through their teeth and pretend to like the other guy every election. Let them be honest about why they don’t like the other guy and we might get better leaders. But before we can demand honest politicians, perhaps we need to be honest with ourselves — about the fact we like and need negative campaign ads.

And let’s not forget, there is a hideous encouragement that somehow it is even remotely acceptable to declare open season by unethical or unconstitutional push-polling or other below-the-belt shadow campaigning. The sick attacks on Mitt Romney’s religion reveal a bottom-feeding baseness of the other candidates and their advisers, namely Mike Huckabee, Dick Morris, Ed Rollins, and John McCain that reveal the most disgusting enterprise of this country. This sadly has existed since the first religionists landed on the shore of this country. You would think this country has stopped burning people at the stake, but there is no doubt the practice continues virtually.

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Apostle Urges Students to Use New Media


Two hundred graduating students at Brigham Young University-Hawaii were urged today to use the Internet — including blogs and other forms of “new media” — to contribute to a national conversation about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Elder M. Russell Ballard, an apostle in the Church, told the mostly Mormon student body that conversations about the Church would take place whether or not Church members decided to participate in them.

“We cannot stand on the sidelines while others, including our critics, attempt to define what the Church teaches,” he said.

“While some conversations have audiences in the thousands or even millions, most are much, much smaller. But all conversations have an impact on those who participate in them. Perceptions of the Church are established one conversation at a time.”

Church leaders have publicly expressed concern that while much of the recent extensive news reporting on the Church has been balanced and accurate, some has been trivial, distorted or without context.

Elder Ballard said there were too many conversations going on about the Church for Church representatives to respond to each individually, and that Church leaders “can’t answer every question, satisfy every inquiry and respond to every inaccuracy that exists.”

He said students should consider sharing their views on blogs, responding to online news reports and using the “new media” in other ways.

But he cautioned against arguing with others about their beliefs. “There is no need to become defensive or belligerent,” he said.

View the address here.
What a wonderful thing – we all need to get our voices “out there” for so many reasons. This is important for all of us.

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Q&A with M. Russell Ballard and Quentin L. Cook

What the Mormon Church wants you to know

M. Russell Ballard, left, and Quentin L. Cook of the Mormon Church. M. Russell Ballard, left, and Quentin L. Cook of the Mormon Church. (Barry Chin/Globe Staff)
By Michael Paulson December 23, 2007

IT’S BEEN A tough few years for Mormons in the public square.

more stories like this

There was Jon Krakauer’s book about homicidal Mormon fundamentalists, and an HBO miniseries, “Big Love,” on polygamists, and a series of theatrical events, from “Angels in America” to “Confessions of a Mormon Boy,” that highlighted Mormonism’s alleged ostracism of gays.

And now, of course, there is the campaign of Mitt Romney, the former governor of Massachusetts who is seeking the Republican nomination for the presidency. Although Romney is the fifth Mormon to seek the presidency, his arrival at a moment when there is enormous focus on the relation between religion and politics has surfaced a wave of negative sentiments and suspicion about his Mormon faith.

The Mormon Church, formally called the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, has watched the national conversation with considerable concern, and has recently embarked on an intensive effort to influence the way the faith is perceived. Among its efforts, the church has begun sending apostles – top level administrators of the faith – out to meet with the editorial boards of newspapers and magazines around the nation.

“Everyone knows why there is a national debate going on about Mormons right now,” the church says in a statement. “But over the past several months, we have seen an endless parade of ‘experts’ – from academics to pollsters to evangelical Christians and even journalists – commenting on, describing, explaining and expounding our faith. Too often, the Church itself is left out of that conversation altogether. We’d like to join it.”

Read more here.

from www.boston.com posted with vodpod

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posted by Aaron Gulbransen at MyManMitt today, some excerpts:

“Mike Huckabee may be a nice man, but his record is troubling.”

I’m here to tell you that Presidential Candidate Mike Huckabee is NOT a nice man. I’m also here to tell you that Mike Huckabee is more dangerous to the future of the Republican Party then any other Presidential candidate…

…Huckabee, the Pastor, may have been a nice man. Huckabee, the Governor, may have been a nice man, as well. (We all know his record shows that he is an incompetent man, but he was probably nice.) However, Huckabee the Presidential Candidate is NOT a nice man.

There is nothing nice about what Mike Huckabee is trying to do in order to secure the Republican nomination.

He’s using religion to divide, rather than to unite. His campaign strategy is completely contingent upon the “fact” that he is the only “real Christian” in the race. In fact, he is counting on his image as a “real Christian” to attract other “real Christians” to his side.

Thank you for getting this Huckabee nonsense straight, it’s enough to make a voter vomit.

read more | digg story

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