Is the American political system broken?

Question: Is the American political system broken?

Mike Gravel: Not only broken, it’s not just the American system. It’s the whole system of representative government. What we do on election day in this democracy and others, we give our power away to politicians who from a human nature point of view can do no better than to first put their interests first above the public interests. And so as a result of that, the public interest falls behind. And so it is only when they solve that. Of course one of the difficulties is we are brought up from childhood thinking that we control government by voting on election day. Well you don’t control government that way and I won’t go into the details of it, but you just don’t. The only way you can control government is with the power of government. The central power of government in lawmaking. So if the American people are ever, and the peoples of other countries are ever to get control of their government, they have to become lawmakers. We have that in Switzerland. And in Switzerland one of the greatest democracies . . . well the only democracy . . . the only democracy that has a partnership between their people and their elected officials . . . and they have a very, very peaceful successful government.


Recorded on: 10/23/07







The election system allows public interest to fall behind.

LinkedIn meets Tinder in this mindful networking app

Swipe right to make the connections that could change your career.

Getty Images
Swipe right. Match. Meet over coffee or set up a call.

No, we aren't talking about Tinder. Introducing Shapr, a free app that helps people with synergistic professional goals and skill sets easily meet and collaborate.

Keep reading Show less

What’s behind our appetite for self-destruction?

Is it "perverseness," the "death drive," or something else?

Photo by Brad Neathery on Unsplash
Mind & Brain

Each new year, people vow to put an end to self-destructive habits like smoking, overeating or overspending.

Keep reading Show less

34 years ago, a KGB defector chillingly predicted modern America

A disturbing interview given by a KGB defector in 1984 describes America of today and outlines four stages of mass brainwashing used by the KGB.

Politics & Current Affairs
  • Bezmenov described this process as "a great brainwashing" which has four basic stages.
  • The first stage is called "demoralization" which takes from 15 to 20 years to achieve.
  • According to the former KGB agent, that is the minimum number of years it takes to re-educate one generation of students that is normally exposed to the ideology of its country.
Keep reading Show less

Douglas Rushkoff – It’s not the technology’s fault

It's up to us humans to re-humanize our world. An economy that prioritizes growth and profits over humanity has led to digital platforms that "strip the topsoil" of human behavior, whole industries, and the planet, giving less and less back. And only we can save us.

Think Again Podcasts
  • It's an all-hands-on-deck moment in the arc of civilization.
  • Everyone has a choice: Do you want to try to earn enough money to insulate yourself from the world you're creating— or do you want to make the world a place you don't have to insulate yourself from?
Keep reading Show less