What we have is a representative democracy, not a direct democracy. “The whole idea is you elect a representative like me to do your work. But what we have now is so disconnected. We have trivialized citizens to such an extreme that we’ve got to fix it,” he said.
Newsom, spoken like a true techie, said what he wants is to find the hybrid. He added how important it is to motivate us to vote and to make government as interesting to kids as games on your phone or computer. “You are trying to solve problems directly,” he said. “I want to capture your engagement again. I want government to work.”
He asked FastForward reporters, “How can we make you as excited about government as you are about the app Angry Birds?”
Newsom said, for the future, he is determined to figure out how to increase the ways citizens interact with their government. “If I had a magic wand and I could change the world it would be one thing—To radically increase the amount of empathy in the world,” he said. “Because if you are empathetic you can see the world from a different set of eyes from someone else’s perspective. And empathy allows people to build trust and softens the edges of our differences.”
Newsom wants to improve our city, but we have to make the platform. Newsom explained that even if you want nothing to do with the government, there is no way to escape it. So why not make it better?