Goshen News, Goshen, IN

Local News

October 14, 2012

DECISION 2012: Goshen residents figuring out what matters most to them



A (bad) visual presence

Even with the differing opinions on policy, one thing many Goshen residents agreed on was how ineffective political campaign ads are.

“They just turn me off of everything,” Martin said. “Never in all of my years have I seen such bad-mouthing about other candidates.”

Springer agreed.

“They’re just not useful,” she said. “I don’t think they change votes and the spending for ads is a waste of money.”

Hochstetler said he has also seen enough of political ads.

“Right now, they’re annoying,” Hochstetler said of political ads. “For a while, they were useful, but now they’re just annoying. They’re plain untruthful. They make the person putting it on look good, but they’re not useful.”

Goshen College adjunct political science professor Gerald Shenk said that most negative political ads are coming from super PACs, not campaigns or candidates themselves.

“People are spending millions on ads,” Shenk said. “The worst ads are at the national level, coming from the super PACs that don’t have to answer for where their funding comes from.”

National views

The biggest issues on a national stage can be divided into two categories: a sense of security versus a sense of fear, according to Shenk.

“People find a lot to be afraid of,” Shenk said about the political races. “Security means more than no terrorists — it means food on the table, good and meaningful work, a good education.”

The Goshen community feels the impact of the national and global concerns, Shenk said.

“We see immigration, jobs and the sluggishness of the economy,” Shenk said. “It’s a serious concern for Goshen, Elkhart County and the greater northern industrial area.”

Amid all of the topics being talked about is the absence of one of the most important things, according to Shenk. No one’s talking about the potential for the middle class tax hike as of Jan. 1, when President George W. Bush-era tax cuts for the middle class expire — raising taxes on the middle class.

“We should be pressing candidates now about this,” Shenk said.

Shenk said he feels citizens today are not able to feel like their votes count as much anymore, especially in the larger stage of the presidential election. Citizens may also feel a similar way toward Congress and extreme partisanship.

“I believe we’ve all been made more aware of the national debt and the failure to balance the budget,” Shenk said. “The failure of both parties to come to an agreement is paralyzing to the recovery process. I don’t think we’re left with any ways to hold them accountable — it’s demonstrably worse in Congress now than in the past decades.”

Shenk said, however, voters may feel their votes count more in smaller races, such as those in local and state-level elections. He recommended looking hardest for unbiased information to vote on.

“It’s all in the diet of news you choose to intake,” he said. “... I suggest that voters try to find sites and sources providing an average of polls, rather than come from one side or another (to get a clear picture).”

Text Only
Local News

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.

Last weekend (July 12) the Goshen Parks Department held its Kid’s Try-athlon to promote childhood fitness and this week (July 18) the new bicycle trail is open to the fairgrounds in Goshen, offering residents a healthy way to get to the annual agriculture exposition. Have you joined the local fitness movement?

Yes, I work at eating healthy and exercising
No, I am happy with my fitness level
Changing my diet and exercise frequency is a work in progress
     View Results
AP Video
Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kerry: No Deal Yet on 7-Day Gaza Truce Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow Gaza Residents Mourn Dead Amid Airstrikes Raw: Deadly Tornado Hits Virginia Campground Ohio State Marching Band Chief Fired After Probe Raw: Big Rig Stuck in Illinois Swamp Cumberbatch Brings 'Penguins' to Comic-Con Raw: Air Algerie Crash Site in Mali Power to Be Restored After Wash. Wildfire Crashed Air Algerie Plane Found in Mali Israel Mulls Ceasefire Amid Gaza Offensive In Case of Fire, Oxygen Masks for Pets Mobile App Gives Tour of Battle of Atlanta Sites