In our season premiere, Terry explores the long history of “attack ads” and political dirty tricks, and shows how changing media have changed the nature of election campaigns, from a discussion of issues to an assessment of personalities.
Major campaign ads are assembled by hand-picked “dream teams” comprised of many of the greatest creative minds in the business. Yet somehow these campaigns invariably descend into a paint-by-numbers litany of personal attacks and stratospheric promises.
To voters they’re a blight, but to broadcasters, they’re manna from heaven: prompting hefty airtime buys from warring parties, and fueling news and political panel shows (who respond in kind: giving free airtime to the more incendiary ads.)
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