Lawrence Lessig, law professor, author, and founder of the Creative Commons, explains the negative influence of private interest groups on the United States Congress and discusses what he is doing to fight corruption on Capitol Hill.
Lawrence Lessig is one of our most respected voices on the legal, political, and cultural implications of digital technology. Currently the Roy L. Furman Professor of Law and Leadership at Harvard Law School, Lessig founded Creative Commons in 2001 to reboot our antiquated copyright system. He is also the director of Harvard’s Edmond J. Safra Center for Ethics and the founder of Rootstrikers, an activist network working to reduce the influence of money in politics. In 2000, as a professor at Stanford, he founded the school’s Center for Internet and Society. Lessig is the author of numerous books, including Code: And Other Laws of Cyberspace; The Future of Ideas: The Fate of the Commons in a Connected World; Remix: Making Art and Commerce Thrive in the Hybrid Economy; and Republic, Lost: How Money Corrupts Congress—and a Plan to Stop It. A member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the American Philosophical Association, he has received numerous honors and was named one of the world’s “Top 50 Visionaries” by Scientific American.
Lawrence Lessig explains that while politicians have historically taken money from special interest groups for their own personal benefit, they now cater to these groups in order to even be reelected to office.
While Lawrence Lessig admits that corruption is not the biggest problem facing our country, he suggests it is the one society needs to deal with first because of the difficulty involved with making changes while politicians are dependent on contributions from special interest groups.