by WorldTribune Staff, October 16, 2016
Scott Rasmussen, the founder of Rasmussen Reports and co-founder of ESPN, says that he has lost faith in the political process – but not in the United States and its citizens.
“America’s best days are still to come,” Rasmussen told an audience of students at The King’s College in New York City.
Rasmussen said that by 2009 he had seen enough of the political system to recognize that it was “designed to keep people out.”
A year later, his family experienced a personal tragedy that helped him realize that community problem solving could help. In March 2010, Rasmussen’s family lost everything they had in a fire. In the weeks after, Rasmussen said he was surprised by how much support he and his wife received from their local community.
“All of a sudden,” he said, “instead of looking at the world as ‘We’re divided; we’re polarized; and this group doesn’t like this group,’ I actually began to look and see that in America, there is something that unifies us.”
Rasmussen said that while one of Americans’ core beliefs is that “we should be able to decide what to do with our own life, so long as we don’t interfere with the rights of others to do the same,” most Americas are not rugged individualists and want to use their freedom to live together in community. He cited the 65 million Americans who do volunteer work and the 22 million Americans who work as entrepreneurs, helping improve people’s lives, as evidence.
“In the real world,” said Rasmussen, “the culture leads, and the politicians lag behind.” He said that America has had a long history of “pragmatic community problem solving,” which has addressed issues like slavery, education, and poverty. “Whenever there was a problem,” said Rasmussen, “people got together and did something about it.
“And that’s what we need to do. Everyone has different passions, different skills, different gifts, different talents. We have different things that motivate us. If you see a problem, solve it. If something touches your heart and you have the ability to do something about it, do it.
“If you are loving your neighbor and you are serving people and you are being creative and you are looking for ways to get things done,” Rasmussen said, “you will change one corner of the world.
“The power of community problem solving explains how I can be so pessimistic about our political system but so optimistic about our nation’s future. And why I am so confident that America’s best days are still to come.”
Rasmussen’s book “Politics Has Failed: America Will Not” will be published in early 2017 by the Sutherland Institute.