The sudden, unexpected “fame” generated by my friend Ben’s co-written piece on how democracy has degenerated into plutocracy continues to stretch beyond the usual 15 minutes. This time, not just in praise, but in creative response, by a Harvard Professor, using crowd-sourced internet tools. YES!
May 12, 2014
by Mansur Gidfar
How bad has the money-in-politics situation gotten? A new study by researchers at Princeton and Northwestern universities found that, and I’m quoting directly here: “When the preferences of economic elites and the stands of organized interest groups are controlled for, the preferences of the average American appear to have only a minuscule, near-zero, statistically non-significant impact upon public policy.”
In other words, if you can’t afford to hire a lobbyist or raise money for politicians, your opinion literally does not matter.
But don’t go into a hopeless despair spiral just yet. On May 1, Harvard Law professor Lawrence Lessig launched Mayday PAC: a crowdfunded Super PAC with the sole mission of forcing Congress to get money out of politics. The response so far has been overwhelming: They’ve raised over a half-million dollars in the first week alone.