Democracy is not doing well these days—we have Trump, and Brexit, and a host of other examples. Astra Taylor has been thinking about that: She talks about the paradoxes of rule by the people, the many ways it’s being frustrated, and why it remains at the center of our hopes for the future. Her new book is Democracy May Not Exist, but We’ll Miss It When It’s Gone.

Also: travel to Mars—now there’s a way to get away from Donald Trump! Elon Musk, the billionaire who is co-founder of PayPal and Tesla, wants to build a colony on Mars. Katha Pollitt thinks that’s not a good idea. Actually, she thinks it’s a terrible idea, but one that tells us something about the world we live in.