A Government by the People: Direct Democracy in America
Ballot initiatives. The phrase conjures up the image of an informed citizenry taking charge of the democratic process, standing up to entrenched power, and bypassing the corporate and political establishments in order to get something good done for the people.
Alas, the reality is much different. From virtually the get-go, ballot initiatives and referenda - the closest our republic has come to "direct democracy" - have been compromised and exploited by the very forces they were supposed to counter-balance.