How did unelected “experts” with their unwavering devotion to “science” rise to such power in American life? More than a century ago, an engineer named Frederick W. Taylor inspired progressive activists with a new concept he called “scientific management.” Future Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis took Taylor’s concept and married it with political power. Brandeis teamed up with President Woodrow Wilson and a powerful senator named Robert La Follette to give the nation an “expert” makeover that Americans were not asking for. This is the story of how a cult of expertise developed among progressives and how these “experts” took a sledgehammer to our constitutional system of government, with far-reaching consequences that still reverberate today.
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