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Massachusetts Liberal

Observations on politics, the media and life in Massachusetts and beyond from the left side of the road.

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

Cash warfare

Carpet bombing remains an effective tool of warfare, as Mitt Romney's blitz of Newt Gingrich proves. And if anyone ever had any doubt, cash, not issues, will determine who sits in the Oval Office next year.

While Barack Obama may draw some hope about a sharply divided GOP emerging from the primaries, the obscene amounts of cash already spent -- and the millions more lining up on both sides -- suggests the 2012 general election will not be decided on either Main Street or Wall Street but on Madison Avenue and its clones across the nation.

It's a particularly hazardous prospect for Obama, because Romney has shown no compunction for attack -- whether the tools are the realities of the Gingrich speakership and beyond or the fantasies of twisting Obama's words and beliefs. The Romney team has clearly shown truth will not be an impediment to their quest.

The insidious nature of the role of cash is magnified by the fact two people -- Sheldon and Miriam Adelson -- hold the key to the direction of the primary. The have already bankrolled Gingrich to the tune of $10 million -- forget the legalities of the money going to a SuperPAC that Gingrich has no legally has no control over. When they say no mas, so will Newt, and not one moment sooner.

And it has been clear from Day One that the Right is prepared to spend whatever it takes to defeat Obama.

Not that the president is entering the general election unarmed. Reports suggest he is preparing a $1 billion war chest to take on the attackers.

Maybe the goal of the presidential campaign is to single-highhandedly revive the economy -- at least for advertising agencies and media outlets.

We are already seeing the worst the Citizens United decision has to offer -- and its only February. The biggest losers ahead are not only the candidates -- but civility and ultimately the truth.

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