America’s Policical Dysfunction:

A Few Thoughts

Mitchell W. Hedstrom

About The Book

The forward reads:
“Today, America enjoys a position of being the predominant global power, not only economically and militarily but also politically. However, when considering the next 100 years, there are several reasonably serious threats to this position, some international and others domestic. This book will focus on the latter category.

A general consensus that has developed both in the United States and across the globe is that there is a significant level of dysfunction in America’s national politics. The three major causes of this dysfunction that are mentioned most frequently comprise the following: the influence of money, lobbyists, and special interests; the management of our government’s finances; and the process we use to redraw our Congressional Districts every ten years. This book will look at each of these three problems and will conclude that only by amending the U.S. Constitution can we hope to permanently ‘solve’ these three causes of our political dysfunction.”

  • Publisher     i-Universe
  • Published    August 2021
  • Price            $10.99
  • Pages         45
  • Language   English
  • ISBN #        978-1-6632-2741-6 (sc)
  •                     978-1-6632-2742-3 (e)

About The Author

The author worked for Citigroup for 30 years, eventually as a Vice President and Member of their Restructuring Committee. He received his Master of Science degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and lives with his wife in Greenwich, CT and Warwick, Bermuda. Their daughter currently lives and works in New York City.
Author’s Email: [email protected]

BlueInk Book Review

Americans of both parties agree that Washington is dysfunctional. Recently, three-quarters of Americans polled disapproved of Congress’s performance. In this slim volume, author Mitchell W. Hedstrom offers a diagnosis of this political malady and suggestions for a cure.

Hedstrom identifies three main causes of the current impasse. The first is the influence of money, lobbyists and special interests. Since the Supreme Court has ruled that limits on campaign contributions by corporations violates the principle of free speech, Hedstrom favors a Constitutional amendment that would limit the amount that candidates can raise and spend on elections.

Hedstrom then discusses the government’s poor fiscal management that has led to spiraling debt and budget deficits. The author proposes another Constitutional amendment that would allow U.S. citizens to buy and sell gold and silver without incurring a tax burden. The effect of this amendment, the author notes, would be subtle, but would create a safety net for U.S. currency over the long term.

Finally, the author tackles gerrymandering. Hedstrom favors a system where races for the U.S. House would occur on a statewide rather than district-by-district basis. In his scheme, in a state with ten Representatives in the House, if 60% of the vote statewide went to one major party, and 40% to the other, then the first party would receive six representatives and the other party four.

Hedstrom’s writing is clear and concise, and his proposals are worthy. He is refreshingly non-partisan and avoids the overheated rhetoric that fills hours of cable news chatter. Readers will find in this brief book a rational voice offering pragmatic solutions to political polarization.