Lawrence Lessig Talks About a Republic Lost

In the Fall of last year I went to see Professor Lessig speak at the Occupy camp on K St. I had seen a couple of his speeches online and was impressed by his critique of the American system.

He comes from a lefty tradition but his analysis that day was not unlike what many conservatives and libertarians say (at least the ones I like) about the current political system. It has a flavor to be sure. More Ralph Nader than Ron Paul. But that day, after declaring his deep commitment to modern American liberal values he told the kids at Occupy, who still shined with enthusiasm because winter had not set in yet, that they and the TEA Party had a number of important things in common. He told the kids that if they really wanted to change things they’d be smart to understand the underpinnings of the TEA Party, and gasp, listen to them.

The statement was warmly received believe it or not. But at that time he was not talking about a “lost” republic.

He is now.

Lessig now likens America to a loved one with terminal cancer. Our Republic, too, is wracked with disease.

But just because the doctor says that the case is terminal doesn’t mean one can ever stop fighting or stop looking for a solution.

Even though cronyism and corruption permeate the core of our system of government, even though the odds of putting it right seem at the moment to be almost insurmountable, we must never quit. The American experiment is too important for us to just roll over without a fight.

And who knows, miracles do happen.

Click here for the video.

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