The News Desk is a collection of news, notes and breaking items affecting the Fredericksburg community.
TV lands jackpot, at voters’ expense
TELEVISION stations salivate when election time rolls around, and this year looks to be especially lucrative.
It is no secret that the media, like many other businesses, have been hurting for the past five years. Advertising revenue is down for everyone.
Newspapers and magazines don’t benefit much from elections, but television hits the jackpot.
Take the Washington TV stations, for example. With Virginia being a swing state, both Barack Obama and Mitt Romney are pounding the airwaves at every opportunity.
The advertising dollars just keep rolling in and business will only get better between now and Election Day.
The truth is that TV election revenue has been good all year. If you recall, the Republicans put millions of dollars into advertising during their hotly contested primary race.
Washington TV is also benefiting from Virginia’s Senate race, with both Republican George Allen and Democrat Tim Kaine spending a ton of advertising money to court Northern Virginia voters.
Then there is the Maryland referendum on gambling. Those who want the big casino in Prince George’s County are funding pro ads, while West Virginia gambling interests, not wanting to lose Baltimore and D.C. customers, are buying time to oppose it.
Yes, television loves elections as much as kids love Christmas.
Candidates are like Santa Clauses, running around all over the place giving out money, not only to local stations and networks, but to production companies who film the commercials.
No matter how the election turns out, television is going to be a winner.
The loser will be the viewer that has to watch all those crazy political commercials. Thank goodness for remotes that can switch the channel with a push of a button.
Speaking of us TV viewers, now we must suffer through more candidate debates.
Remember the zillion or so GOP pre-primary debates that began last summer and continued through this spring? Those about wore us out, and now more are on the horizon.
In fact, they began last week when Kaine and Allen locked horns in Northern Virginia.
Now the presidential debates begin on Wednesday. Oh, woe is us!
Is there anything Obama or Romney can say in those debates that they haven’t already said in their endless TV ads that have about driven us crazy?
What new revelations could either candidate come up with at this late stage of the game?
All these guys are going to do is paw at each other about social programs and foreign bank accounts, and we’ve heard and read about those issues until we’re about to throw up.
Come on, folks! Give us a break!
One final thing while I’m writing this political column: Hillary Clinton’s hair.
Am I the only person who thinks the honorable secretary of state needs a new hairdo?
That shoulder-length scraggly hair just doesn’t cut it. Doesn’t someone that smart know that older women often don’t look good with long hair?
Hillary, you need a new hair stylist! Check the Yellow Pages for a better beauty shop.