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Simple legislative surgery, he says, can put the nation back on the path to greatness. His solution is to create an alternative campaign-finance system; alternative because Supreme Court rulings, most especially the Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission decision, make it difficult to regulate the current system, which permits unlimited corporate and independent expenditures in support of candidates for federal office.

Under Mr.

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In Mr. He also estimates it would raise as much or more money than currently floods into campaigns. His strongest argument undermines conservative demands for the complete deregulation of campaign finance.

Republic, lost : how money corrupts Congress--and a plan to stop it

There is strong evidence of the corrupting effects of political fund-raising, and Mr. Lessig has amassed it. In a November interview with Boston Review he noted that in the first quarter of Congress — awash in special interest money from banks attempting to push through a bill allowing them to collect per-transaction debit-card fees — spent more time on that issue than on unemployment, the deficit, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, health care or global warming.

Lessig explained in the interview.


With billions of dollars at stake, corporations — and powerful interests in general — have consistently found ways both to avoid and evade obstacles. Those with power have an unbroken record of finding ways to navigate around reform laws or turn regulatory standards to their own advantage. For example, the primary users of the Freedom of Information Act are not journalists and crusaders seeking to reveal illicit activities; they are businesses seeking to find out what government regulators are up to and what their competitors have disclosed to government agencies.

View all New York Times newsletters. Similarly, Congressional reforms requiring publicly recorded committee votes are not of most use to the news media or constituents; they help lobbyists verify whether targeted officials have lived up to their promises to vote for or against major amendments. What is to prevent bundling on an even larger scale using new employee vouchers?

The unlikelihood of success has not deterred Mr. Lessig, and he deserves respect for his determination. The underlying rationale for his shift of focus, from digital freedom to the power of money in politics, can be seen in Congress this week.

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The measure is a setback for Mr. Lessig and others opposed to what they consider the suppression of free speech on the Internet. More important, however — and regardless of the outcome — the legislative battle has not been a struggle to determine what is in the best public interest, but rather a titanic war of special interests. Format: Digital Audiobook. Publisher: Hachette Audio. Genre: Political Science.

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In an era when special interests funnel huge amounts of money into our government-driven by shifts in campaign-finance rules and brought to new levels by the Supreme Court in Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission-trust in our government has reached an all-time low.

More than ever before, Americans believe that money buys results in Congress, and that business interests wield control over our legislature. With heartfelt urgency and a keen desire for righting wrongs, Harvard law professor Lawrence Lessig takes a clear-eyed look at how we arrived at this crisis: how fundamentally good people, with good intentions, have allowed our democracy to be co-opted by outside interests, and how this exploitation has become entrenched in the system. Rejecting simple labels and reductive logic-and instead using examples that resonate as powerfully on the Right as on the Left-Lessig seeks out the root causes of our situation.

He plumbs the issues of campaign financing and corporate lobbying, revealing the human faces and follies that have allowed corruption to take such a foothold in our system. He puts the issues in terms that nonwonks can understand, using real-world analogies and real human stories.

And ultimately he calls for widespread mobilization and a new Constitutional Convention, presenting achievable solutions for regaining control of our corrupted-but redeemable-representational system. In this way, Lessig plots a roadmap for returning our republic to its intended greatness. While America may be divided, Lessig vividly champions the idea that we can succeed if we accept that corruption is our common enemy and that we must find a way to fight against it. The result is a wonderful performance of a most important audiobook.

The former Assistant to the President and Director of Communications for the Office of Public Liaison in the Trump White House provides a jaw-dropping look into the corruption and controversy of the current administration. Few have been a member of D Welcome to the world of Ann Coulter. With her monumental bestsellers Treason, Slander, and High Crimes and Misdemeanors, Coulter has become the most recognized and talked-about conservative intellectual in years—and certainly the most controve