Viewed through the lens of “the tyranny of the experts,” it’s easy to see that in the last election Hillary Clinton was the candidate of the experts, while Donald Trump was the candidate of people who were tired of being tyrannized by them.
Populism is an unsettling phenomenon in part because we don’t know where it will end. And we don’t know where it will end because populism isn’t itself a governing idea – it’s a response to the perceived failure of other governing ideas.
If we wanted to – well, hell, we do want to – we could go back 2,500 years and identify the exact point when human civilization went off the rails on the subject of experts.
Not that long ago – say, when my parents were starting out in married life – building a sound investment portfolio was a piece of cake. You bought some Blue Chip stocks and some Triple A bonds and you were done.
The first thing we do, let’s kill all the lawyers.
I launched this series of posts by taking a brief tour of a regrettable society called Acirema, in which a race of experts called Masters, though a tiny minority, lorded it over a sub-race of non-experts called Slaves. We’re back, now, in America and wondering if Acerima society might offer a moral for us.
Is it better never to put your ideas in writing and thus be thought a vacuous fool, or is it better to launch your own blog and remove all doubt?
The least trustworthy people are those who claim to have seen it all coming – after it has all come.
I have met the enemy, and he is me. (What Trump, channeling Pogo, should be saying to himself every morning)
Donald Trump has been such a disruptive agent during his first few months as President that it’s easy to dismiss him as hopelessly incompetent. That would be a mistake: one common way MEPs prevail is because other people write them off as unhinged lunatics. I’ll get to the lunatic aspect of our MEP President in a minute, but, first, let’s give the devil his due. Lost in all the chaos is the fact that some of Trump’s bewildering behavior accomplishes useful things. For example: