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Ralph Nader needs no introduction. But if your knowledge of Nader mostly consists of his 2000 campaign for the presidency, his career does demand some context. Nader is one of America’s truly great policy entrepreneurs, and arguably one of its great ideologists. The consumer safety movement he founded and led has saved, literally, millions of lives. His idea of what it means to be a public citizen is deeply rooted in American traditions, but largely, and lamentably, lost today in national American politics.

And Nader is still active. Writing books. Writing columns. Releasing podcasts. He’s never stopped. He has led, and continues to lead, one of the most fascinating lives in American political history.

In this conversation, we talk about everything from his theories of the media to his approach to political change to how he hired and advised “Nader’s Raiders.” We discuss Howard Schultz’s third-party presidential campaign, whether America is a better country than it was 50 years ago, the differences he sees between Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, and which parts of life he believes should be de-commercialized. I’ve long wanted to interview Nader, to ask him about the parts of his career, and of his philosophy, that I knew less about. It was a pleasure to get the chance.

Book Recommendations:

The CEO Pay Machine: How it Trashes America and How to Stop It by Steven Clifford

The Fifth Risk by Michael Lewis

Impeaching the President: Past, Present, and Future by Alan Hirsch

Skin in the Game: Hidden Asymmetries in Daily Life by Nassim Nicholas Taleb

The Age of Surveillance Capitalism by Shoshana Zuboff

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