Cass Sunstein attempts to answer the question "Can authoritarianism happen in America?" He discusses a few of America’s past flirtations with authoritarianism, some of the weaknesses in our system that could be exploited by an aspiring strongman, and why if it did happen, it would likely be a very gradual process instead of a bold power-grab. He talks about the ways that tribalism, nationalism and conspiracy theories create a fertile breeding ground for authoritarianism, he reveals whether he thinks President Trump secretly aspires to that sort of power, and America's most cited legal scholar weighs in on the Trump-Russia investigation.
Order Cass Sunstein's book Can It Happen Here?: Authoritarianism in America on Amazon and follow him on Twitter at @CassSunstein. Today's podcast is sponsored by The Big Question with Cal Fussman, Quip, AppRiver, and Google Cloud AI.