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It's time to get geared up for the new season. No, I'm not talking about the beginning of high school and college sports or the NFL. The season of which I speak is the upcoming election season where the candidates for local, state and national office engage in the pursuit of our votes.

Candidates from the two major parties and the minor ones who have qualified to be on the ballot will soon begin, or have already begun, to assault our eyes and ears with print, radio and TV ads. These ads, as they have in the recent past, will range from fluff pieces touting the candidate as a nice person with positive values whose only wish is to serve the public to those which paint the opponent in the worst light possible by using innuendo, misleading information and on occasion outright falsehoods. For the most part I ignore the fluff pieces touting the candidates' positive virtues as a military veteran, supporter of charities, strong family member or a host of other positive things that all of us have in our backgrounds to some extent or another. The fluff pieces do not touch on how these things relate to the issues that the candidate will need to address in whichever office is their goal.

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I also ignore the mean spirited, mud-slinging attack ads which seem to be a favorite among candidates for statewide and national offices. These, as well, say nothing about the issues, but only concentrate on what a bad person the opponent is and how his/her election will bring ruin to the locality affected.

What I really would like to see, but have no expectation of on any level, would be a series of pieces delineating the candidates' positions on each of the major issues that he/she will address if elected. If this were done by every candidate for office, we, the public, could probably figure out who the best candidate from our individual point of view might be.

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Personally, I couldn't care less which party a candidate represents. From my point of view both parties have only their own interests and not the interests of the country, state or county citizenry at heart. I have voted, and will continue to vote without regard to the R or D behind the name on the ballot. I only care that the candidate sees the office being contested as an opportunity to do what is necessary to improve the lot of the greatest number of citizens. Be it a county, state or federal office, each candidate should seek out the best solutions to the issues without regard to which party came up with the original idea as to that solution.

For example, the health care reform popularly known as Obamacare came from the former Republican governor of Massachusetts and was hailed by his party. It was reworked a bit and was presented to Congress by the Democrats, and then was roundly criticized by the Republicans who originally came up with the idea only because they didn't put it forth first. It was a great success in Massachusetts as instituted by the Republican governor, but when the Democrats touched it, it became something that the Republicans couldn't tolerate. A little bi-partisan thinking there could have resulted in a better system with a much easier roll out than we have had to put up with to this point.

And now sports fans, let the silly season of campaigning begin. There are only 65 more days until the election.

Bill Kennedy writes every other Monday from Taneytown. Email him at wlkennedyiii@verizon.net.

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