Bold and Nimble: A 21st-Century Case for Ambitious Government

“The current dissatisfaction with government is not a mere perception or marketing problem, as too many on the left still believe,” write Eric Liu and Nick Hanauer in the Winter Issue of Democracy: A Journal of Ideas. “It is a product problem.”

But as Liu and Hanauer argue, neither conservatives nor progressives have put forward good ideas on how to reinvent and reinvigorate government. And our discourse about government has become stale and unproductive, repeating the same old talking points: more vs. less, big vs. small.

Liu and Hanauer have an answer for the current stalemate. They propose a new vision: a “more what, less how” government. In a time when we face enormous public problems and growing disconnection from government, what we need is “more government when it comes to setting great goals and investing to achieve them; less government when it comes to how we collectively meet those goals.”

With their essay, Liu and Hanauer offer a vital conversation-starter, one that should shake up the left-right debate over government. On March 9th, NDN hosted a discussion of a “more what, less how” government: how it works, what it means, why it’s right for the times.

Our featured guests included:

* Eric Liu and Nick Hanauer, co-authors of The True Patriot

* Michael Lind, co-founder of the New America Foundation

* Megan McArdle, business and economics editor for The Atlantic

* Moderator: E.J. Dionne of The Washington Post


Event Date: 
Wednesday, March 9, 2011 - 8:00am