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Don't count on ads to inform on issues

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With the election less than three months away, it's clear that the television stations, Internet and other media will soon be bombarded with ads from candidates, particularly ads bashing the opposing candidate.

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We would hope that your vote is not based solely on the information in these ads.

The bottom line is, virtually every issue involving government policy involves a world of complexity and gray area. From health insurance to farm subsidies to taxes, it is impossible to sum up a candidate's position or record in a 30-second commercial or sound bite.

In addition, it is also impossible to determine someone's character or ability to lead based on only a few pieces of information. If one looked long and hard enough, every politician probably has a skeleton in their closet.

As a citizen, it is important that we look beyond the ads.

Places like newspaper voter's guides, web sites and organizations not attached to a political party such as smartvoter.org, and plenty of other resources can provide good information on candidates.

Let's hope that, when it comes to political ads this year, they annoy voters more than they sway them.

-- Fergus Falls Daily Journal

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