|Can you spot the whore? Is there more than one?|
People who oppose "negative" political ads aren't thinking the issue through.
Consider, for example, federal securities laws. People trying to sell you stock in their company must disclose the negative aspects of their companies -- the risk factors -- so you can make an informed decision, with your eyes wide open.
Taking another example, if you buy a car, new or used, it would be nice to know if it's one that blows up (Pinto), flips over (Corvair, Bronco II), and/or gallops off (Toyota).
How about drugs? You know why they reel off all the horrible things that can happen to you during the commercials for those delightful pills? Because you need to know.
Same thing with the Surgeon General's warning on that pack of smokes.
So why in the world would we want to close our eyes to the negative facts about a candidate who wants to become governor, senator, mayor or whatever? If they have a terrible track record, we need to know. If they have lied, we need to know. If they have taken contradictory positions on an issue, it's not rude to point that out, it's helpful.
Bottom line: Negative is good, negative is important, negative is essential