Lawrence Lessig outlines why money + politics ≠ democracy for his Change Congress group back in 2008. After searching for news and opinions in the wake of the Citizens United v. FEC decision, I’ve found that this speaks to me more than anything else. (I love Lessig’s presentation style, so I’m already predisposed to like this.)
Like I’ve said in the past, Lessig is one of my heroes. Solve the first problem before you can solve anything else. And that first problem is money buying votes in our legislative branch of government. Our legislative branch is supposed to represent the people of our country. When that fails, and the people lose trust in Congress, power shifts to the Executive and Judicial branches, which don’t by nature reflect the interests of the people. And when money from the few controls the interests of the many, democracy fails.