May 28, 2016 • 52M

Ilya Somin on Democracy and Political Ignorance

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Appears in this episode

Bob Zadek
Bob talks about the issues that affect our lives on a daily basis from a purely libertarian standpoint. He believes in small government, fewer taxes, and greater personal freedom.<br /><br />America has lost its way, but it cannot and does not need to be reinvented. Our founders were correct about their approach to government, as were John Locke, Adam Smith and the other great political philosophers who influenced them. The country’s first principles are economic and social freedom, republicanism, the rule of law, and liberty. Bob believes we must take the best of our founding principles and work from them because a country without principles is just a landmass.
Episode details

The second edition of Ilya Somin’s Democracy and Political Ignorance: Why Smaller Government is Smarter could not have arrived at a better time. Most of us can sense something wrong with our democracy, but the source of our problems is often overlooked in the face of the symptoms: botched wars, corruption, and political parties that fail to deliver decent, principled candidates. Somin, a Law Professor at George Mason University and contributor to the Washington Post's Volokh Conspiracy blog, asks us to consider that the issue may a bit closer to home. Might the problem reside partly in our own ignorance, and the reasonable decision of a majority of voters to live their lives rather than obsess about an unaccountable central government? Somin is not taking aim at “stupid voters” or blaming them for the problems of society, but proposing alternative mechanisms for improving governance that depend less on a perfectly informed citizenry. He joins Bob to explore more realistic correctives to the slide towards idiocracy, including a new spin on federalism in the form of "foot voting."