Introduction: Coming up on this episode of the Doctor’s Pharmacy,
Marianne Willamson: We have been taught to limit our political imaginations. We’ve been taught to expect too little and we need to snap out of it. We have been mentally trained into a codependent relationship with people who represent systems that do not wish us well.
Lauren: Hi, this is Lauren, one of the producers of the Doctor’s Farmacy jumping in. Before we begin today’s episode with a quick note for reference that the interview you’re about to hear was recorded in September of this year prior to more recent world events.
Dr. Mark Hyman: Welcome to Doctors Farmacy. I’m Dr. Mark Hyman. That’s Farmacy with an F, a place for conversations that matter. And if you care about our world today, if you care about the problems we’re having and things we’re facing, whether it’s our healthcare crisis, economic disparities, climate change, how to fix our broken political system, you’re going to love this podcast because with a good friend of mine, someone who is running for president again, which is a very brave thing to do given the current political environment, Marian Williamson, you’ve probably heard of her, she’s been around for a long time and has added so much to understanding of ourselves, our own wellbeing, and has been a leader in the personal growth movement. So she’s an incredible woman and has the courage to actually take on the conversations that are hard, but we need to have. And on this podcast, I’m committed to having a number of different candidates for president from different perspectives and I will continue to do that and I want to give Marianne a platform to talk about the things that really are important in our world today.
Dr. Mark Hyman: So Marianne is a political activist. She’s an author, she’s a non-denominational spiritual lecturer, and she’s the New York Times bestselling author of 15 books, four of them hitting number one, which is no small feat. Her career began in the 1980s when she became deeply involved with the hiv aids activism and she’d been a long time advocate for the L G B T Q community. She found a project angel Food to deliver meals to the home bound, I mean unable to shop or cook for themselves. And that organization has served over 16 million meals. I thought I was helping people with food, but that’s a lot of meals. She co-founded the LA Center for Living the Manhattan Center for Living and Co-founded the Peace Alliance. She’s been a nonprofit activist throughout her career and has numerous progressive candidate summits and podcasts to encourage more women and progressives and many to run for office.
Dr. Mark Hyman: She’s lectured hundreds of thousands of people on spirituality and politically progressive topics, sold over 3 million books and is an extensive work with the ill and dying. She actually already ran for president once you might’ve seen on the debate stage in 2020 and is now a candidate for president in 2024. And essential part of our platform is a 21st century economic Bill of Rights, a Department of Peace. What a concept. The Defense Department used to be called the Department of War, but I think we do need a Department of Peace reparations for slavery, a department of children and youth, and a just transition from a dirty to a clean economy. She’s a progressive democrat. Marianne proposes new economic beginnings including universal healthcare, tuition free college and tech school, and a guaranteed living wage. What a different world it would be if all that were true. She was born and raised in Houston, Texas in 1952. She has a daughter and was married and lives in London with their newborn daughter Elizabeth. So she’s a grandma too. Wonderful, wonderful. Congratulations on your grandma. That’s probably the best of all things. Welcome, Maryanne, welcome to the podcast.
Marianne Willamson: Thank you. Thank you so much for having me, mark.
Dr. Mark Hyman: Well, one of the taglines for my podcast is Conversations That Matter and Martin Luther King said, our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter. And you have been anything but silent about things that matter. Your career as a spiritual thought leader, political activist, author, you really have done so much to facilitate personal and systems transformation on things that really matter. And in one of your main focuses of your 2024 presidential campaign is the idea of systemic change. So what do you think the most important changes we need to see in America today are?
Marianne Willamson: Well, there is a cancer underlying all the other cancers. As you said before, there are so many areas of stress and breakdown, but it’s like in the body with cancer. And you said, well, where’s the primary side of the cancer? The primary side of the cancer is institutionalized corporate greed and the hold that it has on the US government. So whether you were talking about environmental breakdown or environmental or income inequality or food insecurity or inorganic agriculture or anything else, if you look deeply enough into the level of cause, root cause rather than just symptoms, you see that there is an overreach by forces of capital that have no particular ethical sense of responsibility or moral responsibility to people, to animals or to earth. And unfortunately, the governmental forces that should be protecting the American people from the overreach on the part of those forces are actually in too many cases enabling them because those forces have such power in Congress that basically turn the US government into a system of legalized bribery. So until we deal with that systemic issue, we will always be playing whack-a-mole, trying to fight them off here, trying to fight them off there. And I don’t even think at this point we’re so much fighting them off. We’ve gotten to the point where we’re all excited and jumping up and down in excitement if we get crumbs from these people, if we get the slightest sense of negotiation. So
Marianne Willamson: The problem is I see it,
Dr. Mark Hyman: That’s a big thing and I think there are a couple of things that have been captured that I think are responsible for a lot of the challenges we have. One is the political process has been captured by corporations and Citizens. United was a huge Supreme Court case that basically made corporations, people and allowed for unlimited funding of political campaigns, which was already a problem, but it’s become really a big problem. And the second is the capture of media and by corporations and just from my own little sliver of the world, pharma ads make up over 60% of advertising on television and that only occurs in New Zealand and the United States. It’s outlawed the rest of the world and it’s not because they’re expecting patients to go to the drugstore and buy the drugs, it’s because it drives them to their doctor and over 60% of the time they get prescribed the drug and they know that. So I think there’s some really big challenges around media and around the political process that have to be resolved, and I think it’s almost sort of a catch 22 that people in power aren’t going to make those changes, but those changes need to be made by the people in power. So how do we navigate that conundrum?
Marianne Willamson: Well, I think we need to move beyond words like resolved. It’s not going to be resolved. I mean there was a point where the civil War, the shooting started because it wasn’t going to be resolved and I appreciate the non-violence, but it’s time for all of us to wake up to the fact it’s not going to be resolved. You mentioned a couple of things and you’re certainly correct. First of all, it was you mentioned Citizens United and you are absolutely right. The way you described it, it is not reasonable given the current makeup of the Supreme Court. It is not reasonable to assume that we are going to be overturning citizens united anytime soon. The only ultimate antidote to that is a revolution at the ballot box. Now the second thing you mentioned was the media and this,
Dr. Mark Hyman: And that’s just so people understand because I think most Americans probably don’t have a clear idea of Congress and how it works, but you have to have over a two thirds majority in Congress to overturn a Supreme Court decision. Isn’t that right?
Marianne Willamson: No. No, that’s not no overturning citizens. That has to do with what happens in the makeup of the Supreme Court. The problem is that because Trump was able to appoint three of them, there’s a book by Senator Sheldon Whitehouse about the strategy over the years that led to this corporatist takeover of the Supreme Court. There is a solid corporatist majority of the Supreme Court now that basically just tows the line with corporate America. There are many tragic moments that led up to this. In retrospect, I think we’d always that Ruth Bader Ginsburg had retired and allowed Obama to put someone in there. They all just assumed Hillary would be the next president. Name goes for the fact that during a certain break he could have gone on and appointed Merrick Garland. But it is as what it is. So right now, no, there is no act of Congress that can overturn a Supreme Court decision. They can codify things such as with abortion rights, but they can’t actually overturn.
Dr. Mark Hyman: Well, they can do campaign finance reform, which would in some ways not overturn the decision but would actually make a
Marianne Willamson: Difference. Only the Supreme Court can do that, but once again, we can override the nefarious effects if people will show up at the ballot box, it’s time for the people to step in on all of this. Congress is going to do it president and is going to do it, and Supreme Court is not going to do it unless we get different people in there and that would be represented by a revolution of the ballot box. The second thing you mentioned was the media. A lot of this stems from a 1996 telecommunications act, which I’m sorry to say was from Bill Clinton and what this led to was the corporatization and monopolization of the big media companies. Before then, you didn’t have even a term like corporate media. It didn’t exist. In fact, when I was growing up, there was a law that said the same company was not allowed to own the radio station and the newspaper and the television station in a community because they recognize the importance of diversification of opinion to a free society. Now, independent media is trying to fight against this, but you’ve got what is essentially what I often call a political media industrial complex. Also, when you were talking about big pharma, and I’m sure you realize this, until Ronald Reagan pharmaceutical companies were not even allowed. Yeah,
Dr. Mark Hyman: I know. When I was in medical school, there were no ads on tv.
Marianne Willamson: Absolutely all that came from the orgy of deregulation on the part of the policies of Ronald Reagan. So this is all about neoliberalism, i e trickle down economics i e corporate rule, and that’s what we are right now and that’s why we have to see it as not as complicated as it appears. It’s kind of one problem and the only, I mean with many, many tentacles and it’s only the people ourselves can handle this. Now the people need to step in and if we can continue to elect status quo, politicians all will do even the best of them. We’ll slow down the catastrophe, but we’ll not turn around.
Dr. Mark Hyman: Yeah, it’s interesting like you and Bobby Kennedy are on the margin of the process and are being excluded from it and actually are having a different voice and that should be welcomed. It should be part of our discourse as a democracy and the fact that people are being shut out of the process is a bit frightening. It’s almost like an autocracy and there’s Democrats or Republicans that happens on both sides, and I think we have to recognize that we’re in a moment where the average person really doesn’t have an understanding or a voice of actually how to fix this. And when you say the ballot box, are you saying that by people voting in different candidates we could make a big difference because many of the candidates are selected or preselected by the party, so they’re not actually candidates like you or Bobby who is like, I always want to change and make great change. They’re people who are kind of part of the system and they don’t even get to vote for people who might be different. They never show up on the ballot.
Marianne Willamson: 20 years ago, people like you and me could say, ah, I’ll just vote in blue. I’ll just make sure the Democrats, and as long as the Democrats are in power, everything will be ultimately open. We look at that as very naive. In retrospect, people have to get involved on the level of the primary because what you were saying is true, we need to look back at the farewell address of George Washington. George Washington warned us in his farewell address about the power of political parties. He said that they could form factions of men who were more loyal to their party than to their country. This is also why our second president, John Adams said that he saw political parties as the greatest threat to democracy. What you have now is these political parties,
Dr. Mark Hyman: And by the way, George Washington voluntarily stepped down and if anybody’s seen the film or the play Hamilton, there’s a great scene where he’s induces Alexander Hamilton to write his letter of resignation and his saying goodbye to the country and he says, we’re going to teach them how it’s done. We’re going to teach them how democracy works. I’m not going to hold on to power. And the king kind of goes, what do you mean who gets rid of power voluntarily? Nobody does that and it really, it gives chills to
Marianne Willamson: Think about. It was so important because there were many people in this country who would’ve made George Washington king if he had wanted to be king, but he recognized that there was an overriding principle here. This is what Donald Trump does not seem to realize. The principle of democracy is more important than any one man. If we go back. However, the point of going back is to have a greater understanding of where we are now. So what’s happening right now is not just that the political parties chop wood and carry water for these huge corporate entities. They are corporate entities. That’s the problem that we have now. So they are claiming based on nothing entitlement to determining who the American people should consider qualified to run for president and even to be president. Now notice what’s happening here. They’re seeking to supplant the will of the founders because the founders said that in order to be president, you have to have been born here. You have to have lived here for 14 years and you have to be 35 or older. If the founders have wanted to say you had to have been a congressman or a senator or a governor, one of them they would have and they ly didn’t. The way they do it now is mainly through character, assassination,
Marianne Willamson: Mockery or calling someone a long shot. She could never win. She’s an unserious candidate. When you look at candidacy like mine, standing for universal healthcare, standing for a guaranteed living wage, standing for tuition free college and tech school standing for climate emergency. Actually, I’m the most serious candidate and they know that, by the way. So they pull me unserious to sort of, it’s almost like a cops and robbers show. It’s a per thief mentality. Look over here, so you won’t look over there.
Dr. Mark Hyman: Yeah, it’s crazy. Yeah. Well, I want to,
Marianne Willamson: It’s dangerous to our democracy.
Dr. Mark Hyman: I think you’re right. I think we have a disengaged electorate, I mean voting base, and I think that a lot of people are disenfranchised from the voting system on purpose, the gerrymandering of districts to exclude different people, to sort of leverage on both sides, the Democrats, Republicans, how it looks for them. It’s kind of a mess, but I want talk about what’s,
Marianne Willamson: I’d like to say something about what you just said, you just said The problem is that we have a disengaged electorate. I want to say as clearly as I can, if I have learned anything from my last campaign and this one is that the people are not the problem. They want us to think. The problem is people are disengaged. No, people are angry, people are frustrated, people are cynical. People are going into this emotional decline, not because they are disengaged, but because when they engage they get so angry, frustrated because they know on some level that their voices are being suppressed.
Dr. Mark Hyman: I think that’s fair. That’s fair, that’s fair. I know I stand corrected. I stand corrected. People are not the problem. No, I don’t think they’re the people are the problem. I just think people, it’s just so frustrating. It’s such a show that they’re like,
Marianne Willamson: I don’t think disengagement. They disengage out of how painful it is to engage, and that’s different from disengagement out of, I don’t care what
Dr. Mark Hyman: Agreed. Okay, agreed. Let’s talk about your vision for America because it’s a very compelling vision and I want to start with the thing that I think our audience and most interested in is the food system and the food system have written about extensively. Food Fix was a passion project book of mine. I have a nonprofit that works on policy change in Washington. I’m going there next week to meet with senators and congressmen and the White House to try to move things forward to change the Farm Bill. But it’s a slog and there’s so many forces to raid against it, and there’s so many people profiting at the expense of so many. We have an incredibly sick population. One, six out of 10 Americans have a chronic illness. 93% of us are metabolic and healthy kids, one in four kids have type two diabetes or it’s tragic mental illness is staggering and a lot of it’s driven by our food system and we see on one side people who are hungry on the other side, the obesity crisis and what doesn’t really get talked about is the root cause, and Biden recently is trying to advocate reducing drug prices and pick 10 top most costly drugs and is trying to negotiate lower prices.
Dr. Mark Hyman: I’m like, that’s just a dumb ass idea because why even talk about drug prices? Why don’t we talk about the reason why people need those drugs in the first place, which is entirely preventable. So can you talk more about how do we actually think differently about the food system and the food production system? You have a whole food safety and security plan to address this epidemic of obesity, heart disease, diabetes. What are your thoughts and visions for how we fix our food and system? And then we’ll get into the healthcare system. Another whole problem food system is driving people to the healthcare system and we also have to fix the healthcare system.
Marianne Willamson: And I said that actually on the debate stage in 2020, we can’t just talk about healthcare. We have to talk about the fact that basically we have a sickness care system. What we have to actually ask ourselves, which you yourself just pointed out, is why is there such a higher level of chronic illness in the United States than in any other advanced democracy? And that’s why my healthcare plan is called a whole health plan. The system as we have it today, is stuck in a very allopathic model. You refuse to proactively create health and then you only talk about how to suppress or eradicate symptoms once sickness arrives. That is very 20th century thinking, and that is why the political status quo is an inadequate mode of problem solving for the 21st century is Einstein. Never has it been more true when he said, we will not solve the level of thinking we were at. We’ll not be able to solve our problems today from the same level of thinking we were at when we created them. Now you go back to the same problem. Big food companies, big agricultural companies, big chemical companies, there are what 46% of the American urban water supply is filled with P F A S. The fact that children are still
Dr. Mark Hyman: Explain what that is because an important, if
Marianne Willamson: They’re called for, you could probably articulate it better. They’re called forever chemicals. They do not break down. And now I first heard about them because of a company called St. Gobain who recently actually did decide to shut down and go back to France. Thank you very much. That was just spewing P F A S into the water supply of Merrimack New Hampshire, and there are all these heightened cancer rates and so forth. But now it’s so ubiquitous that, like I said, you’ve got 46% of the urban water supply in the United States. The issue is now people know this. Now it’s interesting because if I may say so, even talking to you is interesting because they don’t mind having Mark Hyman to the White House because Mark Hyman’s a celebrity. So they don’t mind, and I’m sure that there are people there who are just so happy you came by and they are so happy to hear you and so they probably even have you to a reception at the White House.
Marianne Willamson: This is how the Democrats work. The Republicans don’t even let the problem solvers in the corporatist. Democrats let the problem solvers in a very performative way. So what’s happening now is that we have in every area, it’s not just Mark Hyman when it comes to food, we have the geniuses in every area. We have the people such as yourself in every single area who would know. They already demonstrate. They write the books, they have the foundations, they have the best practices. They know how to repair lives. They know how to repair the earth. They know how to repair the food supply. They know how to regenerate the agriculture. The problem is not that we don’t have the problem solvers, the issue is that the people with solutions do not have the power
Marianne Willamson: And the people with the power don’t solutions problem solvers except to the extent. So the democratic ones, we’ll bring in someone like you, mark, okay, hello. But what will happen is only so far as what you’re suggesting does not undercut the bottom line of short-term profits for their corporate donors, then you’re going too far. Then they’ll keep calling you and schmoozing you and you know we’re with you, mark, but you notice five years later nothing has really changed on a systemic level and that’s why we need that revolution at the ballot box. Those people are not going to change it. The Food and Drug Administration was established in the 1930s and it has been up for 50 years now just taking its teeth out, taking its juice out, taking its power away to the point where basically their idea of problem solving is writing a polite letter to the c e o of the company. Maybe sir, please, maybe would you consider doing better? And then people such as yourself have meetings with them and even they are getting it. But until you have the levers of power in the hands of someone such as a president who’s going to say this stops them, it stops now in a kind of rooseveltian way. Then the incremental changes that are represented even by Democrats having house Senate and a White House will not be enough to keep us from a catastrophic result.
Dr. Mark Hyman: Yeah, I mean it does feel like a catastrophe happening. I feel like I’m standing on a beach watching a tsunami coming in and actually nobody’s paying attention and I’m sitting on sunbathing
Marianne Willamson: Every
Dr. Mark Hyman: Time.
Marianne Willamson: This is why the riches among them are planning ways to head to outer space,
Dr. Mark Hyman: Outer space or New Zealand
Marianne Willamson: Basically bought up. New Zealand
Dr. Mark Hyman: Already bought up new even
Marianne Willamson: NeoCon, you know that the neocons have all this land in new these people, what they’re doing to the planet. It’s like, well, we’ll get out in time.
Dr. Mark Hyman: Yeah. So in terms of the vision is clear. I mean your vision is very well laid out and we’re going to link to your website for president, which includes all your platforms and detailed descriptions of all your policy ideas, your breakdown of the problems. It’s very thoughtful, very well laid out, and it very much actually represents, particularly in the food, agriculture, and health space, the values and the vision that I have. And I think my challenge to you is, okay, well let’s say you get to be president, but Congress is still captured because you could potentially get the nomination, you could potentially become president, but then you’ve got all the senator and congressmen who are captured by corporations and you have to actually have Congress to enact laws. You have to have them to pass the bills. So it’s, it’s a tripartite system. We have the Supreme Court, Congress and the White House. So it’s like how do you solve that?
Marianne Willamson: Well, the president does not have a magic wand. We don’t want the president to have a magic wand. What you call a tripartite system is we have a balance of powers. That’s a good thing, not a bad thing. There is a limit to executive authority, but it is ultimately good for all of us that there is the president, no matter who the president is, the president is hoping for a congress and a Senate who will go along. And this is why I talk about this all the time, don’t just elect me. You’ve got to get in there. On the primary level, on the congressional races and the senatorial races, the kind of suppression that you were noting of myself and another opponent, Bobby in this race is it happens on the level of the senatorial and congressional races as well, the parties, and this includes a Democrat as well as the Republican.
Marianne Willamson: When they talk to someone about possibly running, one of their first questions is, can you self-fund? What that means is you have at least a million dollars lying around that you could put into this. So how could we be surprised at the consciousness of the majority of people, although at this point the majority of people in Congress, although at this point it’s sickening and saddening to see the way the progressives will not exercise more spine and leverage in the face of corpus, even in the Democratic party. But that’s a different topic. My answer to you is the Republicans of late, the more recent Republican president, certainly such as Trump overreach and abuse, the authority of the presidency, the democratic presidents, however, won’t use the entirety of the authority of the presidency. Even right now, the government has marching rights. If pharmaceutical companies spend even $1 of taxpayer money in developing a drug, which is essentially almost every drug in the United States, theoretically and legally, the government does have marching rights.
Marianne Willamson: They can march right in and lower some of those prices, but they don’t because in the final analysis, they don’t want to piss off big pharma so much that they would come after them in the next election. So at this point, the issue is that we have to deal with the situation as it is. So what is the situation of the presidency? One of the things that I’ve said to people, which traditionally you’re not supposed to say, but I do say to audiences, I’m only running for one term because what I want to do as president, you couldn’t even think of doing, if you were even thinking of trying to get reelected.
Marianne Willamson: We’re not talking about abusing the powers of the executive, but we’re talking about using them fully. I would have the power to actually appoint heads of these agencies. You would not have a Department of Defense secretary who had been a board member at Raytheon. Thank you. You would not have executives from big Ag in the agricultural department. Thank you. You would have to be honest, people such as yourself, not just coming in to visit and to give advice, but actually empowered and I would not only have that, I would have the power of executive order, although you don’t want to govern by executive order, but when you need to, and then also Mark, I would have the power of the bully pulpit. Notice what you and I are talking about here today. You and I are talking about the elephant on the table. The problem is not that the American people are not open to what you and I are saying, and that is true on the right as well as the left. Of course, the problem is the political system does everything it can to obfuscate so that the people aren’t actually having this conversation. We not only need to have this conversation, we need to have it in the White House at a certain point, and I know that you agree with me because I know that you have your own experience of this. At a certain point you start to feel like I’m done trying to convince you. Please get up and let me sit there.
Dr. Mark Hyman: Yeah, stop taking out the space and let someone who actually can get the job done. This is
Marianne Willamson: Wasting my time coming here.
Dr. Mark Hyman: Yeah, it’s amazing. Let’s talk more about the plan you have for how we transform our food system. Food production has been subsidized. We’re subsidizing ultra processed food. It’s the number one killer in the world today. There’s no debate about that. It kills 11 million people a year. I mean, we were so passionate about dressing covid. We spent trillions of dollars to do it, and yet the biggest thing that kills more people than Covid ever will is staring us right in the face and it’s caused by food. So how do we change from the agricultural system to the food production system, to the actual dietary guidelines, to what’s in snap to all the things that our government has actually leveraging and to actually change the food system for the better?
Marianne Willamson: Well, of course it starts with agriculture and it starts with the devastating effects of mono monocropping and everything that big agriculture has done. Whenever you make short-term profits for huge corporate entities, your bottom line, this means that you are willing to do so at the expense of the real principles of nature, principles of nature, principles of agriculture, principles of farming have literally evolved on this planet over millions of years.
Marianne Willamson: And big ag came in and completely decimated the whole thing. Not to even mention how many lives they have decimated, how many people had farms in their families for generations. You know, mentioned at the beginning how everything connects to everything. When I ran last time, I would talk to many mayors in small towns, and this is what they would say. They would tell me, well, before the 1980s, there were local banks and many more. And so a farmer would come into the local banker and say, I didn’t have a great yield this year. And the banker was likely to say, that’s okay, we understand you’ll pay me next year. So what happened was in order to gain control for big Ag, it had to be gaining control for big banks. Big, big banks would come in there, they could care less. If a small farmer said, I didn’t make my yield this year, the big banks would say, okay, you’re just going to have to sell to the big agriculture people, and it’s just one thing after another. Now, when I was in, that
Dr. Mark Hyman: Was Earl Butts, right? Go big or go home.
Marianne Willamson: That’s right. Go bigger. And he actually said that those were his words. Exactly.
Dr. Mark Hyman: I know, I know. I’m not making it up. No,
Marianne Willamson: You did not make it up. Those were his words. He was the Secretary of Agriculture
Dr. Mark Hyman: Under Nixon, and it was because the food prices were going up, and so he wanted to bring commodity prices down and he was worried about not getting reelected. So he basically empowered his agriculture secretary to move aggressively toward the centralization and industrialization of agriculture to bring commodity prices down to actually bring food prices down, which would help him get elected. So it was all very nefarious and it ended up, the downstream consequences are just
Marianne Willamson: Devastating safety and wellbeing of the people on the planet. Now,
Dr. Mark Hyman: Literally millions and billion, millions of people have died because of it. It’s really frightening.
Marianne Willamson: Thank you. And I want to say something that’s exactly what I mean. We need to go past beyond how we’re going to resolve this. Yeah,
Dr. Mark Hyman: Yeah. It’s kind of murder in a sense. In my view, it is murder. I think we know the solution and the fact that we aren’t engaging in policies that are saving Americans health and wellbeing is really criminal. I mean, it’s really criminal that 75% of the budget of the food stamps, which is a hundred billion dollars, goes to junk food and 10% goes to soda, and the government is using taxpayer dollars to actually propagate the chronic disease, diabetes and obesity epidemic and killing so many people. That’s just one example. I could go on and off, but it’s funny, but
Marianne Willamson: I think that the leap transition, transformation, evolution, whatever of your own conversation around this actually is where our generation is. You cannot resolve this is murder, this is criminal behavior, and it is systemic. It’s
Dr. Mark Hyman: Pretty radical to say that, but I never said that before, but actually I think it’s the truth as I think I was thinking of like what’s going on? I’m thinking about the conversations you and I’ve had
Marianne Willamson: And where we get stuck when we say, but they’re nice people. It doesn’t matter that they’re nice. People tell the Iraqi people that George Bush was nice, it’s irrelevant. These are murderous systems. Now the issue is just like we have you being an example when it comes to food, we have the Mark Hyman,
Dr. Mark Hyman: Sorry to interrupt, but it reminds me of Hare’s book, the Banality of Evil, talking about Nazi Germany.
Marianne Willamson: It’s exactly how Eric, it’s exactly how
Dr. Mark Hyman: Eric, that’s kind of an obscure reference. Most people dunno what it’s, but she was an incredible philosopher and wrote a book after World War II about how Nazi Germany happened.
Marianne Willamson: That’s right. But she’s so cute little blonde girl with a lead voice mean to that family be Yeah, exactly. Yeah, we’ll call that to the boy in the stripe pajamas. Okay, but let’s go back a little bit. So you have right, you should be hip to this stuff. We should not be vulnerable to this. Okay, hold on. So what you are in food, and this is a very important point, what you are in food, we have the people who are the same in agriculture. I met people in Iowa who felt so betrayed by Barack Obama. Oh
Dr. Mark Hyman: God.
Marianne Willamson: They said that he had come there, they explained to him what was needed. He understood. They said, I saw it in his eyes, he understood he got to the White House and he did not do the things he had said he would do. The issue is not how do we do it that we have in every area, the people who know how to do it, the people who would know how to restore through regenerative agriculture, sequestration of the soil. That’s not the problem. The problem is we need the levers of power in our hands. It’s funny when I think of, and I say this too, when I talk to people all the time, when I have a visual mark of my four years, I get four years in the White House. This is my visual. I think of all the people that I meet out there like yourself in every area, they know what to do. Okay? This is my visual image of my presidency. I’m in the Oval Office. I open all the doors and all the windows, and I say, come on in, guys. We have it for four years.
Dr. Mark Hyman: No, it’s true. It’s true. I mean, I’m getting in very inspired by this conversation, but I do know that the levers of power beyond just government, the corporate levers of power are so big. And I don’t know if it’s just my skepticism as I’ve sort of dug deep into the food system and the healthcare system, it’s so clear to me how there’s a very deliberate pernicious attempt to control the narrative and to drive the agendas that they want. And I think for example, the food system, there’s many ways that they actually co-opt our minds and government one, obviously funding political campaigns. Two, they fund all the professional associations like the American Heart Association, American Diabetes Association Academy Nutrition, dietetics Three. They fund social groups like the NAACP and Hispanic Federation to co-op them and prevent them from speaking out, for example, about soda taxes. Four, they create front groups like the American Council in Science and Health that says, smoking trans fats and pesticides are good for you and they sound great, but they’re actually all very deliberate.
Dr. Mark Hyman: And they fund nutrition research, nutrition research, which is 50 times more likely to show a positive outcome for their product. If you look at dairy as a sports drink versus an independent study, which will barely find anything positive for the processed food that that’s being studied, the studies are all co-opted. So our nutrition sciences co-opted, our government’s co-opted the professional associations, the social groups, there’s front groups. It’s a very clear strategy. It’s not like, oh, we just didn’t know we made Twinkies, but we didn’t know they were bad for you. We’re sorry. We’re going to try to fix ’em. It’s very deliberate and it’s something that most people don’t realize. And this is exactly what we mean by corporate capture. It’s not just to the government, but it’s everywhere in society, whether it’s medical schools, whether it’s professional groups. I mean, the American Family Practice Association basically was given millions of dollars by Coca-Cola, and then a whole bunch of doctors quit because of that. And I resigned my membership and that too. So it’s pretty nefarious. And how would you begin to break through on that?
Marianne Willamson: Okay, first of all, I want to say it’s just a delight to be on the front row of the radicalization of Mark Hyman. And I’m,
Dr. Mark Hyman: This is not new. I’ve been this guy for a long time. I’m not,
Marianne Willamson: Please don’t get me wrong. There’s an important point here because this point is very important. I’m not saying you didn’t know these things. I’m not saying you didn’t say these things. I’m not, please don’t get me wrong. What I am saying is that there’s a level of coming out in the public and just saying what is true. And the reason we don’t, and the reason we sometimes take a while to get there is because what they then try to project onto us, oh, mark Hyman’s really gone too far. Mark Hymens, he’s really gone too far. And that’s where we are. Enough of us who recognize what you just said to be true have got to be in solidarity with one another and support the candidates, whether me or anyone else. And in this case, to be honest, I am the only Democrat running
Marianne Willamson: Who is saying these things. I mean, Bobby Kennedy is saying the answer is the discipline of the free market. He keeps saying he’s a free market capitalism guy. And if you don’t recognize that unfettered, unregulated capitalism that is completely swayed from any moral center is the problem. And how are we going to fix it? So what we need, once again, the President is not everything. The president is one piece of it, but a president is a big part of it. We need a president who would basically give a thumbnail of what you just said at the State of the Union address. And I want to tell you something, and you know this from the success of your own show, when we have a president who is willing to say the American people will harken to the message on both left and right, I believe this, the problem is not the American people.
Marianne Willamson: The problem is how much power those corporations have in Congress. So what’s going to have to happen is that the American people are going to have to realize it’s not enough for you to just show up every two years to four years because those corporate lobbyists are in these people’s offices all day, every day. And that’s why I’m saying a revolution at the ballot box. And it has to be in the primaries, and it has to be right now, literally right now. And if you’re going to buy, of course they say that anybody who challenges that bottom line is unserious or kooky or crazy or whatever, they come up with long shot of whatever they take to distract you. And we have to see through that and elect somebody who represents the real intervention that is needed. Now, the people need to step in because corporations are basically not only controlling our democracy, but if we allow them to continue destroying our democracy and possibly destroying a whole lot more
Dr. Mark Hyman: Than just, yeah, it’s absolutely true. One of the things you do talk about, and I think it’s really important and almost none of the candidates talk about is our healthcare system not just giving access to people. I think the arguments are Medicare for all, or let’s restrict access because we can’t afford it. Medicare is going bankrupt, and those are sort of the right and left positions, but neither of them makes sense. I mean, if you allow the open gate for all the sick people to enter into the healthcare system, it’s just going to overburden it. The costs are going to go up unless you deal with the reason people are being funneled into in the first place, which is our chronic disease epidemic fueled by our food system. And in your Whole Health plan, the cost of Healthy America, you lay it on your website and encourage people to read through it.
Dr. Mark Hyman: It’s very thoughtful. It’s very deep. And you talk about big food, big ag, and big chemical companies driving so much of the problem with our healthcare system and that we can’t just fix the healthcare system. We have to fix the reason our healthcare system is burdened. And it’s not like we have bad doctors or we have bad science or it’s just we don’t actually have capacity to actually do what’s needed because we’re not actually addressing the root cause. And I think the beginning of this conversation, you talked about root cause analysis of the crisis in our political system, but there’s also root cause analysis of what’s wrong with our healthcare system. So can you unpack your vision for your whole health plan for America?
Marianne Willamson: Well, you can’t just treat sickness. You have to proactively cultivate health. So I want to be a president who not only provides greater access for people to get healthcare, but greater opportunities for people to live a healthy life. This has to do with lifestyle issues even this has to do with educational issues. This has to do with environmental issues. This has to do with food issues, which has to do with agricultural issues. This is why it’s called the Whole Health Plan. We need a holistic vision of the society. And this is why status quo politics, even at its best, is not capable of dealing with this because it’s very transactional. It is not transformational. All it does is to treat the symptom. So we have to stand back and say, okay, not just how are we going to pay for treatment? And I do think that’s important also, by the way. Yeah,
Dr. Mark Hyman: Absolutely.
Marianne Willamson: Is noting, I have had doctors say to me, two in particular. One was a doctor in Detroit who said 15 years ago, if I told a patient what the treatment was that I was suggesting based on their diagnosis, the question would’ve been, what are the side effects today? The question is more likely to be how much it’ll cost.
Marianne Willamson: And the same with the cardiologist who said something to me similar in Texas. He said, I don’t even know why I bother to practice medicine anymore. People’s insurance will cover the visit to the doctor, but under insurance, which is so prevalent, means the insurance will cover the visit to the doctor, but will not cover, for instance, the 18 million people in America who cannot afford the prescriptions that the doctors give to them, or the insurance will not cover the, so this Medicare for All issue is obviously very, very important, but once again, we have to ask ourselves, what will it take to create a healthier society? A lot of the obesity that you mentioned, of course, has to do with the fact that so many people, a lot of people, particularly these obese children, and I’m sure you’re very aware of this, many of these obese children keep wanting to eat more because their bodies are going for some kind of calories.
Marianne Willamson: There are so many food deserts in this country where people don’t even have access, don’t even have access to healthy food, do not even have access to healthy water. They’re not breathing healthy air. I’m sure you saw the article that went viral recently. If you look at the ingredients in a bottle of ketchup in Canada versus the ingredients and a bottle of ketchup in the United States. But once again, as long as short-term corporate profit is your only bottom line. Until we challenge that and really present to the American people, what are our options? And our option is the kind of hybrid economy that you have in many countries in Europe where they have far better, we are the only country we spend the most and have the least results in terms of our healthcare system. And when you look at countries such as some of the Scandinavian, other Western European countries that have much, much better results, it’s because they do not allow themselves to be ized by corporate greed from either insurance companies or pharmaceutical companies.
Dr. Mark Hyman: It’s true. Our life expectancy is worse than all the rest of the world, and we score lower on most health metrics than even developing countries, whether it’s mortality, mortality,
Marianne Willamson: We have over a million people who are rationing their insulin.
Dr. Mark Hyman: That’s insane.
Marianne Willamson: 1.3 million no other in, no other than democracy or people rationing their insulin. I spoke at Cambridge recently when I mentioned that people were rationing their insulin. I saw the disbelief on people’s faces. This is only because of greed and big pharma. You don’t have this, whether it’s universal healthcare. You don’t have people putting up GoFundMe pages for lifesaving operations. But once again, as you point out so eloquently, why are some of these people so sick to begin with? Why is there such a high rate of diabetes to begin with?
Dr. Mark Hyman: Right? I think that’s right. And I think you’re not just sort of saying these things without deep thought. And I have to say again, I was just very impressed with the level of detail, the specificity and the holistic thinking that was involved in creating the platforms that are on your presidential candidate website. Right. It’s
Marianne Willamson: Thank you.
Dr. Mark Hyman: Food and Safety Security, the Whole Health Plan, the Climate Action Plan, it’s Maryanne 2020 four.com. It’s like the number 2020 four.com. I encourage you really to take a look because it’s hard to argue with what she’s saying. And Maryanne, you say, I’m newly radicalized. Well, I have to say, I wrote a book 20 years ago where I talked about the toxic triad, big food, big pharma, and big Ag that was driving our disease epidemic. And this was, sorry, this was in 2003 that I wrote this book, and now it’s 20 years later and it’s worse than ever. I mean, then I wish we could go back 20 years. It would be amazing. It was bad then, and it’s much worse now.
Marianne Willamson: The election actually that was stolen was the election of 2000. If the man who was actually elected by the people Al Gore, a world-class environmentalist, had been president in the year 2000. It’s one of the great tragedies of human history, actually.
Dr. Mark Hyman: Yeah. Yeah. He was selected, not elected, right. Selected by the Supreme Court. Yeah. Tell us about your thoughts about climate, because I think it’s a complex topic. I think this has been a very intense year of fires and floods and droughts, and I mean, it just seems to get worse every year. It’s almost like we’re becoming numb to it. Any one of these events would’ve been a giant story, and now it’s just like every week there’s something. Right? And can you tell us about how you’re thinking about this problem? Robert Swan said, the greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it. And this is a global problem. It requires global action. And I know John Kerry well, and he’s been really working hard. He’s almost 80 years old, and he’s working really hard, running around the world, trying to make a dent. But how do you
Marianne Willamson: See his frustration has become obvious, by the way,
Marianne Willamson: In much the same way that you’ve described in your own experience. So I am in New York City right now for Climate Week. I do believe that the environmental movement has been successful, particularly with the maturing of this younger generation at creating a critical mass. Going back to the way the corporatist Democrats will always, where we are with them is they’ll say the right thing. So the president will, for instance, say he’s the climate president because of the healthy investments in green energy in the Inflation Reduction Act. The problem is all of the benefits of those investments are completely nullified by the fact that the president has approved the Willow Project by the fact that he’s given more oil drilling permits even than Trump did. And by the 858 billion defense budget, given that the Defense Department is the single largest institutional emitter of greenhouse gases on the planet, what I will do, president, really, I didn’t know that not only cancel the Willow Project immediately, but all the 8 billion ConocoPhillips oil extraction project up on the north slopes of Alaska, but also declare a climate emergency.
Marianne Willamson: When you talk about trying to negotiate with these people and how deep rooted the corruption is, a climate emergency will actually give the President the capacity to not just invite people into their office and say, Hey guys, let’s talk about it, but actually say what’s going to happen. I’ll give you one of my favorite stories from F D R at the beginning of World War ii. When Roosevelt, his eyes are open, he is getting what’s really going on here. There was a tremendous isolationist tendency in the United States, understandably, based on World War I, but we started to see what is really going on. Hitler had spent five years building up his military capacity, and every time he invaded a country, he was able to absorb their industrial power. We had nothing. We had basically nothing. England had nothing. Roosevelt calls the head of the big three automakers, the same people, same Europe’s going on in UAW strike right now. So he calls the head of the big three into his office in Washington, and he says, gentlemen, I need this many ships and I need this many tanks, and I need this many planes. And the head of the big three automaker said, president Roosevelt, we are patriotic American, sir, and we will support the war effort. And as soon as we sell our quota of cars, sir, you’ll have those ships and you’ll have those tanks and you’ll have those planes. And Franklin Roosevelt said, gentlemen, I don’t think you heard what I said.
Marianne Willamson: I need this many ships. I need this many planes, and I need this many tanks, and you will not sell another car until I have them.
Dr. Mark Hyman: Yeah.
Marianne Willamson: That’s what it means to declare a climate emergency. And that was necessary because World War II was an emergency. This is an emergency. So we need a mass mobilization for a just transition from a dirty economy to a clean economy, and we need it now. We need to ramp down fossil fuel extraction now. And that is the kind of president that I would be.
Dr. Mark Hyman: I agree a hundred percent. In fact, I was on Tucker Carlson, who’s the only person who would actually let me talk about these issues on media because he wasn’t co-opted, sort of an independent loose cannon, whether you agree with them or not. He gave me an hour uninterrupted, essentially to unpack what’s wrong with the food system. I said, this is a national emergency. What we have going on in healthcare with the health of Americans, we’re seeing 93.2% of us are in poor metabolic health. I mean, 6.8% of Americans are healthy. That is a national emergency in my view.
Marianne Willamson: This is an emergency, a national emergency, a global emergency, a species emergency, and we’re like the frogs in the boiling water, but it’s not, you know what? I don’t even think it is the frogs in the boiling water. I think it’s worse than that. It’s more like the crabs trying to get out and being pushed down by these systems that I don’t really know what they’re thinking because I don’t care how many billions of dollars you have, if the really hits the fan, there’s no amount of money that can protect any of us from what would occur.
Dr. Mark Hyman: Yeah. I mean, you kind of float around in different circles. I mean, what are you hearing in the back rooms and the private conversations? They
Marianne Willamson: Know we’re right. Some of the people who run the world and are heads of some of the most nefarious systems are some of the smartest people. And sometimes this is where you have to really being nice becomes irrelevant elephants,
Marianne Willamson: And we have to, it’s funny, Vivek Ram Swami, who is now running for the Republican, I mean, he’s so far out there, and he said to me when we were both on the Bill Marshall, he said something like, well, I really like you. I think you’d be a great president or something. And I said, well, I’ll tell you this much. If I’m ever president, you are going to pay much more in taxes. I think that’s where it comes. If it comes to same people very nicely who we like, boy, you’re just not going to be able to do that anymore when I’m brave.
Dr. Mark Hyman: Yeah, no, it’s true. I think nice isn’t necessarily the problem. I
Marianne Willamson: Think it’s like George Bush, Bush, like I said, asking the rocky people.
Dr. Mark Hyman: Yeah. I think my view, there’s this sort of what appears to be the people who run the world, and then they’re actually the people who run the world, and I think that’s what’s invisible, and it’s this invisibility that’s the problem, and it’s not something that most people understand,
Marianne Willamson: But really, I don’t think it is a covert conspiracy. It’s an overt conspiracy. People just have to be willing to turn off mainstream corporatized media, read books like yours, read independent media. It’s actually very overt, and they’re not hiding. They’re behind their gates, definitely. But they’re in the Hamptons, they’re in Montecito, they’re in Sun Valley. I’m sorry, we know this. You know this. I
Dr. Mark Hyman: Know this, but maybe phrase it a different way. I think there is sort of this collective group of humans who are very small, who all hang out, Republican, Democrat,
Marianne Willamson: Different
Dr. Mark Hyman: Countries. Davos. Yeah, it’s like, it’s like, yeah, so they all know each other.
Marianne Willamson: They’re not hiding, actually, they’re
Dr. Mark Hyman: There. Well, they’re hiding from America. The average American doesn’t see them, doesn’t go to those places. You and I pop in and out and we kind of get to see it, but it’s actually, I’ve been to some of these meetings and it’s like there’s 200 of the most powerful people in the world. On the weekend with Charlie Rose, I went to one of those, and after it was Charlie Rose, because they took them off, but it’s like, oh my God. I’m looking around the room and it’s like world leaders and politicians and all the billionaires, and it’s like, okay, wow.
Marianne Willamson: How there’s power, great enough to intervene and to cut the cord. That codependent relationship, which at this point is almost master slave at this point. And that’s, like I said, a revolution at the ballot box.
Dr. Mark Hyman: So what did that look like? Tell us about that concept of a revolution.
Marianne Willamson: Well, in my case, I mean, this sounds a little self-serving, but in my case, it means donate and volunteer to my campaign and vote for me. But I’m not the only candidate who is speaking this way. In many ways, Cornell West’s views aligned with mine. Of course, I’m running as a democratic, he’s running as a green candidate, so somebody could vote for me and the Democratic nomination, and they could vote for,
Dr. Mark Hyman: But that’s just at the top of the ticket. What about all the down?
Marianne Willamson: The same thing as being mirrored on the congressional levels and on the senatorial, but you have to really listen to people. You have to really ask people questions you have to actually ask what they actually stand for. And I think that’s where I do think a lot of people need to exercise more critical thinking, because if somebody names the problem, but then things, the only answer to it even takes someone like Robert Kennedy. He certainly has been an environmental lawyer. He understands the nature of the problem. But when you ask him what’s the answer to the climate crisis, he says, the discipline of the free market. Are you kidding me?
Marianne Willamson: He says, I’m a free market capitalism guy. So he’s throwing his bones to the libertarians and the far right wing extremists. But this isn’t personal, but there are serious disagreements here of opinion, but people have to involve ourselves and we have to realize that you and I were talking about it off camera at this point, the era of data collection is over. You’ve written the books in your area. Actually no more data to be collected. The issue now, do we have the courage? Do we have the bravery? By the way, these forces as you just, they are, they have been pushed back before
Dr. Mark Hyman: We
Marianne Willamson: Answered slavery with abolition, we answered the institutionalized suppression of women with the women’s Suffragist movement. We answered segregation with the civil rights movement. We answered the first gilded age with the establishment of organized labor. It’s just our turn now. And I know it’s hard. I know it’s despairing, but there’s a saying in aa, you get sick and tired of being sick and tired. And you said something earlier, you said, I feel like I’m sitting on a beach just watching a tsunami come in.
Dr. Mark Hyman: And
Marianne Willamson: That’s really the question right now. Are we going to watch this tsunami coming? Are we all going to get up right now and say, no, it’s the 11th hour, but it isn’t midnight quite yet.
Dr. Mark Hyman: No, no.
Marianne Willamson: And there is still time, but we’ve got to stop electing the status quo politicians who will at the best, give us the kind of incremental changes. And that way we will still hit the iceberg. We’ll just hit it a little bit later and at a different angle, but the ship would still go down.
Dr. Mark Hyman: Yeah, I hear you and I still feel a little discouraged. My friend Tim Ryan, who was congressman from Ohio, was running for Senate and he was way ahead of the game. He was running against JD Vance, who is a very strange character, who flip flopped completely from who he used to be to who he is to get elected. And he was winning, really winning. And then Mitch McConnell threw tens of millions of dollars to the opposition candidate and the Democratic Party left Tim high and dry, and it was sort of super depressing. He was a candidate who had a vision, who understood the issues, who wrote a book about the food system, who understand climate issues, who understood the mental health crisis, who understand the challenges of our economy. And he was just kind of couldn’t get in. He just couldn’t get in. It was so tough.
Marianne Willamson: I think it was one of the mysteries of that election season that the Democrats did leave him high and dry. But it was also my impression that Tim, and this is not a criticism, but it does seem to have been his choice, that he also played along where he thought it would serve him too. And it came across a little bushy Washington. I think that was true of Mandela Barnes in Wisconsin as well. If people would just claim their unabashed progressive vision and say it like it is, you’d be surprised at what we could make happen in this country if those of us who believe that actually support them,
Dr. Mark Hyman: Support us. So let’s just close with a sort of recap of your hope and vision for the future and how we restore our individual and collective health, because I think we’ve covered a lot of ground, but I think I want to end on a note of vision and hope.
Marianne Willamson: The way I see it, the American people need to claim the possibility of a prepared world. Americans were born out of a big dream. Americans are character logically hardwired to dream big. And when we do not dream big, something starts to wither inside us. We don’t dream big collectively anymore. We’ve actually bought into the notion that the only people who get to actualize their dreams are the people who have the money to do so. And the only people we see actualizing their dreams are people who have big money. So we’re numb and we’re thinking, well, maybe if I make enough money, I can actualize my dreams. That’s not the American dream. The American dream is not that you can have yours. The American dream is that we can stand for a greater possibility, and that is what needs to be reclaimed. We have been taught to limit our political imaginations.
Marianne Willamson: We’ve been taught to expect too little and we need to snap out of it. We have been mentally trained into a codependent relationship with people who represent systems that do not wish us well, that are morally neutral. And an amoral system inevitably produces immoral results. This is now our lives. We’re talking about the lives of our children, the life of our ecosystem, the life of our democracy. And if we’re not careful, what could become the habitability of the planet for the species? It’s that serious. And I think if all of us who believe this will actually stand on what we believe and claim the possibility of for repairing this world, we can do it. Americans, Churchill said, you can always count on Americans to do the right thing after we’ve exhausted every other option. Historically, it is true of us. That’s true. We often get there late.
Marianne Willamson: We’re often too distracted or too easily fooled something. But when it happens, when it happens and Americans wake up, we slam it like nobody’s business, and it’s time for us to do that. Now, the people, Jefferson said, the only safe repository for power in this country is in the hands of the people, not the hands of the government, not the hands of the corporations, in the hands of the people. And it’s time for we the people, knowing that we are no longer functioning as a government of the people, by the people and for the people. We are functioning as a government of the corporations by the corporations, for the corporations. We are not functioning as a vital democracy. We are a vital oligarchy, and it’s time for the people to step in. It’s our turn now. And when we awaken to that and are willing to stand up and to say it and to do it and to put our feet behind it and to put our money behind it and to put really our lives and our sacred honor, as our founders said, then we’ll turn the ship around in time and it’ll be one of those political miracles for which America historically become quite well.
Dr. Mark Hyman: I’m surely hoping for that. One of the things we didn’t talk about, which is I think the undercurrent of what’s happening is that there’s so much division in the world and so much kind of tribalism and mutual hatred and lack of mutual understanding and inability to have conversations with people you disagree with and the cancel culture and the woke culture. And I mean, it’s so pervasive. And I think in my view, it’s partly been propagated by digital persuasion algorithms that capture our mind and make us believe things that aren’t actually in our best interest and that drive us to behaviors that aren’t necessarily in our best interest. And it’s kind of this invisible force out there that whether it’s intentional or not, that’s going on. And I think some of it has been intentional. I mean, it is deliberate cyber attacks. Cybersecurity is a real issue, not just getting your computer hacked, but your mind hacked.
Dr. Mark Hyman: And I think this is what the Russians, the Chinese, the Saudis are all potentially doing to us. And I think when I think about this problem, I’m thinking, well, how do we solve that? I feel like it’s kind of is this invisible problem that is there that unless we figure out how to solve this tribalism, we’re not going to get better. And I just got back from Dharmsala when I met with the Dai Lama and I got to see one of his monks create a school called the Tanglin School where he took kids off the street who were living basically in slums and brought them in, gave them housing, gave them shelter, gave them food, gave them an education. And what was really remarkable was they created a curriculum called Secular Ethical Emotional Learning. And these kids in there who literally were nobody in their family is educated, they were all living in poverty.
Dr. Mark Hyman: They were all beggars or talking about how to identify their emotional state, how to have conversations, how to be kind to the importance of compassion. They were textbooks on compassion. There were textbooks on dialectics. How do you have a debate with someone where you come to sort of a conclusion that is based on logic and reason? We’ve lost all that. So part of it has to do with this digital persuasion economy and this tribalism. How would you as president heal that divide that we have in this country? Because unless we do that, I feel like we’re kind of at each other.
Marianne Willamson: A lot of what you just described that sounds so beautiful to people like you and me and to your audience. That’s what Ron DeSantis calls woke.
Marianne Willamson: And he would say, Florida is where woke goes to die canceling any problem, any programs that have to do with social emotional learning, et cetera. This is what I believe. However, even that division, the culture war division, has been purposely stoked between left and right. It is artificial. What they don’t want us to see is that the real axis is not between the left and the right. The real access is between the powerful and the powerless between those who have access to unbelievable sources of capital, and I mean huge multi-billion dollar sources of capital versus those who are simply struggling to get by. I think that people, we are living at a time mark, where there is an interesting rumbling under the surface. It is, there is a realignment of political dynamics going on right now, and people on both left and right are coming to understand. It’s not the people on the right who are ruining my life. It’s not the people on the left who are ruining my life. If you’re a working class American, when no matter whether you’re on the right or the left, you’re being screwed by the same people.
Marianne Willamson: And so what we do is speak to truth. What happens when some people are telling a big lie? You’ve got to tell big truth. And what the corporatist elite, even on the democratic side have done, they tell the truth, but not the whole truth. And not nothing but the truth. And I think what you and I tried to have a conversation, when you talk about Martin Luther King, things that matter, if we’re going to have a conversation about things that matter now, we have to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. I wouldn’t be running if I didn’t think there was a critical mass of Americans ready to hear that. This is why in my case, for instance, it’s not an accident that C n N isn’t having me on. It’s not an accident that M S N B C isn’t having it on because these corporate powers know this.
Marianne Willamson: They know that we would start a wildfire, and those of us who are saying these things, if the majority of American people got to hear them, and my faith is in the American people, my faith is in the power of truth to tear down any wall. And when a radio talk show host in Las Vegas, Nevada said to me recently, he said, Ms. Williamson, I agree with everything that you are saying, but how do you convince the average American? And once again, I don’t stand for that. I pointed out to him that this country elected Lincoln, this country elected Lincoln twice. I had a dinner with a woman. The other, well, I won’t go into that. Well, I could because you’re laughing. I mean, she’s a supporter of mine, but she voted for Trump and she said, if you’re not the nominee to vote for Trump again, when you actually talk to people where they live, we’re not as divided as, no,
Dr. Mark Hyman: I agree. I a hundred percent
Marianne Willamson: Agree. We’re confused. And the dots have been so disconnected.
Dr. Mark Hyman: Hundred percent. I a hundred percent agree. It’s like how do we begin to have those conversation? I don’t want to just kind close the story. That was one of the most moving things I’ve ever seen, which was a white supremacist who was a young man who was the voice of the white supremacy movement, very smart guy, well-educated, who had very structured beliefs about the fact that whites were superior to other races. And he had his facts in line. He had his data, he had his statistics. He really deeply believed that he was brought up in that world and that culture. He wasn’t someone who wasn’t educated or aware. And he went to a college for some reason that was not a kind right wing kind of white supremacist college, and he was kind of ostracized. And there was a Jewish guy who said, Hey, why don’t you come up for Shabbat dinner?
Dr. Mark Hyman: And he came over and started talking to him and they would just meet regularly and they would exchange ideas and they would talk and they, he sort of basically almost got him deprogrammed by just having deep, deep conversations backed by evidence. And eventually he changed his mind and he became now someone who’s sort of speaking out against the problems of white supremacy. So you take someone who’s so entrenched, so hardened to a particular belief when you humanize them, he’s hanging out with a Jewish guy who thought it was an inferior, and he is like this, his buddy now. And it was like I invited him in, was kind of almost like a spiritual chiropractic adjustment in his mind that helped him actually understand that we’re not all that different. And there is a value around equality that’s
Marianne Willamson: Almost spiritual. That is spiritual actually.
Dr. Mark Hyman: Yeah. Yeah. I’ve seen this happen a number of times. And so I feel like if we just can sit with each other, if we could just kind of look at each other’s eyes, if we can humanize each other and people say, how are you taking care of this person? He is a Republican, or How are you doing taking care of that person? He is a Democrat, or Why are you taking this care of this Muslim? Or people kind of say stuff to me and I’m like, you know what? I’m a doctor. I take care of human beings. Everybody’s a human being first, and then they’re whatever else. Then they’re a man or a woman, or they’re white or they’re black or whatever beliefs they have. That’s kind of my view. And I have friends who I don’t agree with on all these, a lot of things, but we understand their common humanity, and that’s, I feel like we have to get back to
Marianne Willamson: That kind of smug arrogance projection onto other people that they don’t share our values is something that infects the left as well as the right.
Dr. Mark Hyman: Oh, a hundred percent.
Marianne Willamson: I think we all have to get off our high horses. No one has a monopoly on truth and nobody’s tribe gets to own this country.
Dr. Mark Hyman: No, no. We
Marianne Willamson: Have to find that sweet spot, the roomy idea out beyond all ideas of good and bad and wrong. There is a field, I’ll meet you there. We need to meet there. And that is where solutions will come from.
Dr. Mark Hyman: That’s right. That’s one of my favorite poems. We’ll maybe put it in the show notes by Rumi. It’s, I’ll be on the ideas of wrongdoing and Right doing, there’s a field. I’ll meet you there. And I think that’s exactly right. That’s exactly right. Well, thank you, Marianne, for having the courage and the tenacity and the grit to actually go out there and do this job because I’m not sure I would, and I hope all the success to you, you have all the success and you keep putting these ideas out there because thank
Marianne Willamson: You. Whether or
Dr. Mark Hyman: Not you get elected or not, I think these are really important conversations to have that are marginalized, and it’s why I think the podcast world is so great because it’s almost like media has kind of gotten sidelined and more people listen to podcasts and almost are looking at alternative media than are actually watching television anymore, so it’s almost become irrelevant.
Marianne Willamson: That’s why I’m so grateful for having me.
Dr. Mark Hyman: Alright, thank you, Marianne. I hope you’ve enjoyed this podcast. If you were inspired and interested in this conversation, I encourage you to share with others on social media. Leave a comment, what are your views? What do you think about all this stuff? We’d love to hear from you and subscribe to Every Gear podcast and we’ll see you next week on The Doctor’s Farmacy.
Closing: Hi everyone. I hope you enjoyed this week’s episode. Just a reminder that this podcast is for educational purposes only. This podcast is not a substitute for professional care by a doctor or other qualified medical professional. This podcast is provided on the understanding that it does not constitute medical or other professional advice or services. If you’re looking for help in your journey, seek out a qualified medical practitioner. If you’re looking for a functional medicine practitioner, you can visit ifm.org and search their find a practitioner database. It’s important that you have someone in your corner who’s trained, who’s a licensed healthcare practitioner and can help you make changes, especially when it comes to your health.