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Yes, I do think we expect dissembling political ads during the election
season.  But I also think it reflects rather poorly on the candidate who
runs them.
 
It's a fine line, though, between political rhetoric (in which you emphasize
your acheivements and highlight your opponent's failings) and dishonesty.
Clinton's ads mention that Bush proposed to cut financial aid for families
with incomes over $20,000; but it didn't mention that he also proposed to
increase such aid for families with less income.  I would say that both the
Bush ad and the Clinton ad are somewhat misleading, but are not explicitly
lying.  But it also seems to me that the Bush ad comes closer to the
boundary between a rhetorical shaping of material and a lie.
 
From Time's perspective, the issue is somewhat different: the Bush ad
infringes on their trademark, so they say.  But don't political ads use the
nameplate of publications to accompany a quotation from that publication all
the time?  Is Time making this argument about the trademark only because
they disagree with the ad using it?
 
 
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James Peterson
University of Notre Dame
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