Breaking Through Power: It’s Easier Than We Think – Ralph Nader

(Reviewed by JD Jung)


“It’s a lot easier than you think to shape a political economy where corporations are our compliant servants, not our masters.”

“It is also easier than you think to have elections where voters shape the agenda where voters drive the candidates, where voters do the counting in competitive elections, and where using money to buy, rent, or influence politicians in banned. It’s in our hands as voters if we want this kind of democracy.”

I admit that I was skeptical at first. As an individual, I felt that I had no power to change our government whether it be national, state or even local. However, long-time consumers advocate, Ralph Nadar ,disagrees and shows how we can make a difference in his latest book, Breaking Through Power: It’s Easier Than We Think.

The first half of this short book explores the history of our corporate- driven government and the private exploitation of common property as well as a history on how certain movements and individuals made changes to benefit the general public as well as those under served. He introduces the reader to names that most of us have never of, but who made major impacts to the good of society.

While he does address problems that keep resurfacing, and it does rile us up, I was anxiously waiting for specific suggestions on what I, as an individual, could do to solve these problems.

That is what the second half of the book is devoted to. Nadar maintains that “Social networks drive social movements” , and gives specifics on how it only takes one percent of us to get involved and make a difference.

Though this was published in October of this year before the final election results, I wish he would have gone into depth on a common political and social trend that keeps rearing its ugly head. This in itself puts power in the hands of a few, while controlling the rest of us. Politicians are pitting ethnic groups against each other in order to gain power. This resurgence of racism and xenophobia weakens our society and we need to learn how to specifically combat this when so much of the public buys into this philosophy. Could this be a topic of his next book?

That said, Breaking Through Power is a must-read for those of us who are fed up with current politics and are willing to get involved if we just knew how to go about it. After all, He keeps reminding us that “it’s easier than we think.”

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