Is the American Political system broken?
Robert Thurman is Professor of Indo-Tibetan Buddhist Studies in the Department of Religion at Columbia University, President of Tibet House US, a non-profit organization dedicated to the preservation and promotion of Tibetan civilization, and President of the American Institute of Buddhist Studies. The New York Times recently hailed him as "the leading American expert on Tibetan Buddhism."
The first American to have been ordained a Tibetan Buddhist monk and a personal friend of the Dalai Lama for over 40 years, Professor Thurman is a passionate advocate and spokesperson for the truth regarding the current Tibet-China situation and the human rights violations suffered by the Tibetan people under Chinese rule. His commitment to finding a peaceful, win-win solution for Tibet and China inspired him to write his latest book, Why the Dalai Lama Matters: His Act of Truth as the Solution for China, Tibet and the World, published in June of 2008.
Professor Thurman also translates important Tibetan and Sanskrit philosophical writings and lectures and writes on Buddhism, particularly Tibetan Buddhism; on Asian history, particularly the history of the monastic institution in the Asian civilization; and on critical philosophy, with a focus on the dialogue between the material and inner sciences of the world's religious traditions.
Question: How do we fix the American political system?
Robert Thurman: The single most important thing that we could overcome would be, undo the damage Reagan did to the media, by abolishing the Fairness Doctrine, and by abolishing the regulations of the Federal Communications Commission, that prevented people from – people like Rupert Murdoch from monopolizing many many media outlets, so that CNN, Time Warner, the large percentage owned by the Mormons the, the ABC Disney, CBS, and Viacom, few giants own all the media and then they just make it a propaganda tool, and the, Mussolini defined Fascism as the union of the corporations and the government, and the government allowing corporations to gain control of the information media.
The media should be the vehicle of education and reeducation of the population, of the free country, and they should be where people see them misdoings of the people, they learn what the inefficiency of this in – they – they realize that this and other kind of things shouldn’t happen, and when medias presenting the propaganda rather than true information, it then puts people into a state of defeat, and so the most important thing would be to open up our eyes, and restore the sources of free information.
Recorded on: June 1, 2007
Thurman talks about what we need to do to fix it.
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