Barack Obama is a liar.
Or so they say.
He said four years ago he was going to lower unemployment even more, repeal the Bush tax cuts for higher income Americans and close down Guantanamo Bay.
How could we possibly let this supposed altruist president serve another four years in office for us? You know what, though?
I heard that Mitt Romney is a big liar, too.
He won’t be forthcoming to us regarding major policy proposals and has a magical budget that makes $5 trillion disappear, according to the debate.
Obviously we cannot let this big business baron be our new boss, right?
But what if all those lies about Romney just came from the seething lying lips and burning pants of our current commander-in-chief?
There’s no way we can trust him, right?
What if it is just the Romney camp’s callous campaign that painted these out of context misconceptions about our otherwise wholesome President?
What are we supposed to even believe anymore?
I know every lay person that follows election coverage has similar opinions regarding the campaign, wishing both major parties spent more time lifting up their candidate, rather than focusing diatribes at the other.
It is a noble request, too.
The current state of American presidential campaigns create so much static surrounding the candidates that it is near impossible to sift through the garbage to find what our candidates are really about.
All it really does is make the apathetic more apathetic and the undecided voters more confused, making any victory downright pyrrhic.
This is the major problem with our current political landscape, not just in presidential elections either.
Congressional campaigns are just as bad and in the case of the House of Representatives, they have to do it every two years.
They are constantly campaigning, even when they are not campaigning.
Every vote they cast is a TV ad in the making, every proposed bill — a baby kissed on the campaign trail.
How can one expect any bipartisanship in a system like this?
Working with the villainized opponents across the aisle will certainly come back to bite them on the campaign trail, being labeled a traitor, flip-flop and eventually unemployed.
How do we fix this inherent problem in our system?
Well for Congress some point to it may be as simple as imposing term limits just like the presidency.
Will this really help, though?
It sure hasn’t made our presidential campaigns anymore civil.
It is evident there is a deeper seeded problem within the culture of our political landscape that cannot simply be fixed by further legislation.
In fact, it cannot really be “fixed” in a traditional sense as it thrives off our innate desire for competition and public humiliation.
We love seeing those who have “made it” show cracks in their armor, that they, too, are imperfect and more like us. We have some strange desire to see the flaws in these people in power or these leaders who have risen the ranks.
We need to see it.
It gives us a feeling of hope that we, too, can one day fulfill the ever elusive American dream with all of our imperfections.
In a word, it quenches our thirst for schadenfreude on the widest possible scale. The sooner it changes, the better.
Tim Wessel is a senior majoring in a finance and is The Daily Collegian’s Thursday columnist. His email is firstname.lastname@example.org.