There’s been a lot of talk on the left about billionaires trying to buy the election. And when you’re watching “America’s Got Talent” and Romney ads appear during the commercial breaks, you might think his billionaire buddies are putting their money to good use. But the thing is this:
Billionaires can’t buy the election. All they can do is buy commercials. Their money can pay for campaign staffers, posters — lots of ‘em, to be sure — candidate travel expenses and plenty more. But, really, if the election doesn’t go the way you want, you can’t really blame billionaires for throwing their money around.
Following up on yesterday’s blog post, voters have a choice to make. They can make a decision based on TV ads — some paid for by billionaires — or they can choose to make informed choices.
Seriously, it’s not asking much to be educated on the issues. You can read the Tribune or our website to get facts. Or you can read larger papers, like the New York Times online. Or, heck, try Google News. You might have to sift through some garbage –a lot of political stories are nothing more than empty, mudslinging quotes — but you can find factual stories about health care, taxes, the economy and immigration. And if you’re not sure what to think about claims each side makes, visit factcheck.org, a non-partisan project created at the University of Pennsylvania.
Sure, it’ll take a little effort. But maybe you can skip an episode of “Hoarders.” Or instead of watching funny cat videos on YouTube (seriously, this one is hilarious), maybe troll some informational stuff online for an hour.
If you go to Fact Check today, you’ll see features refuting the GOP claim that Obama’s health care law kills jobs, and you’ll see a piece concluding that the Obama campaign overreached when it said Romney would be the “outsourcer in chief” if elected.
Actual facts — not some distorted, out-of-context quote or a half truth. Real information.
Even the feeling that billionaires are giving Romney a fundraising edge can be looked at with skepticism. While Romney raised $100 million in June, Obama has still outraised his opponent — $552.5 million to $394.9 million — since the two candidates formally announced thier campaigns.
Of course, a lot more money will pour in during the next few months. Billionaires like Sheldon Adelson have pledged to donate hundreds of millions to Romney. And in 2008, Obama raised $150 million in September alone.
But let’s show them they’re wasting their money. Let’s ignore what they campaigns want us to hear and actually seek out facts.
Educating ourselves is the best investment we can make for our country.
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