Why this letter?
To my mind, Americans don’t hear or talk enough about power -- who has it, who doesn’t, and how it’s being used and abused. Power is at the center of our economy and democracy. Its allocation determines who gets what in our economy and who’s heard in our democracy, which are becoming ever more closely connected. Those with power are gaining even more of it; those without it are losing even more ground. But I’m old enough to know this trend is unsustainable. It will be reversed; the only questions are how, and when, and what it will take to get us there.
I’ve spent most of my working life around power. I’ve served in a president’s cabinet, argued cases before the Supreme Court, run part of a federal agency, advised candidates and presidents-elect, even run for office. Along the way, I’ve witnessed a major shift in power -- away from the vast majority of Americans, toward a wealthy business and financial elite. I’ve done what I could to reverse this trend. I’ve tried to inform the public through books and articles about the system, documentaries and social media. I’ve taught two generations of exceptional students.
Now I want to try a medium whose success can’t be measured in the number of clicks or even in how many people have watched one of my documentaries or read one of my books. And I want more direct communication -- a means of building a community of learners, reformers, organizers, and activists.
Hence, this newsletter.
How often? Mondays and Fridays, with Wednesdays for “Office Hours” discussion.
How much content? I’ll be posting short written pieces but I also want to try podcasts, videos that I and my team are producing, and maybe even a drawing or painting I’ve been working on.
Current news? I’ll key off current news, but I don’t want this to be a mere summary of what’s happened during the day. You can get that elsewhere. I’ll provide context, background. Connect the dots.
How to subscribe? You can receive what I publish directly by signing up at no cost.
What about a paid subscription? While most content is free, we’ll also have a community of paying subscribers to sustain this project. More paid support will also allow for more content, including more free content. So if you can possibly support this effort, please consider doing so. (As always, those with financial hardship should please reach out to us.)
Why pay at all? I want to compensate my colleagues for their time and efforts, and I’d like to be able to invest in additional projects such as another documentary. The more support you’re able to provide, the more I’ll be able to do.
What is included in a paid subscription?
— Live chats with me. I'll be online on Wednesdays for "Office Hours" and will be live in the comments responding to your questions and comments.
— Comment capability. We plan to only open the comments section for our full subscribers, to ensure it's a place for meaningful discussions, without the trolls that often insert themselves on social media.
— Subscriber-only posts and events. We will make certain posts and events available for full subscribers.
How much for a paid subscription? $5 a month. You can sign up here:
You signed up for the newsletter, but you’re not receiving emails. What do you do? If you can’t find the newsletter, step one is to check your spam folder. If you find it there, mark this address as “not spam.” If you don’t find it there, step two is to check your “Promotions” tab. If the newsletter is in your “Promotions” tab, please move it to your “Primary Inbox.” See this post for guidance.