Richard Fernandez of urges caution for those paying attention to political rhetoric in the weeks and months ahead.

The signal to noise ratio in the presidential political coverage, never high to begin with, is likely to drop even further until coverage basically approaches the level of spam. Under these circumstances it’s easy for public’s inbox to become saturated by sheer garbage. Old accusations on both sides will be resurrected along with new allegations until the timeline becomes mushed.

To have some chance of counteracting low signal to noise it may be necessary for readers to take a longer baseline of observations and trace the story arcs to see whether they continue or just peter out, whether they are real contacts or just decoys in a radar display filled with clutter. It may take 2 or 3 days for the “probable” truth of any major assertion to become clear.

The accusations on both sides are going to arrive not only in an increasing tempo but at the superlative end of the register. But with the rhetoric so amped up, misdemeanors no longer count. Both sides have left the arena of genteel jabs far behind. Now the only thing that will make an impression is a major crime. To hear the Dems tell it, Trump is no longer just dangerous he is “the most dangerous” man ever to seek the presidency. To her detractors Hillary is no longer just crooked but the most crooked candidate in history, and traitor to boot, etc, etc.

At this end of the register, where everything is superlative, comparative measurements will become meaningless. Already the campaign is taking on a Manichean aspect. This is no longer a campaign between mere mortals but a fight between the eternal forces of good and evil. By November the messaging is likely to be one continuous screech.