Liberal Fascism

Rule By Experts

From a reader: 

Hi Jonah,

I read your post this morning about the idea of “governance by experts.” Coincidentally, I noticed this passage in the San Francisco Chronicle’s obituary of Nobel Prize winner Joshua Lederberg:

He was also deeply interested in world affairs, focusing on the threat of war with biological weapons and nuclear arms control. He served on President Eisenhower’s science advisory committee in 1957, and continued providing science advice to eight succeeding administrations, shuttling back and forth to Washington for decades. He also was a consultant to the U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency and a member of Stanford’s Center for International Security and Arms Control for many years.

Despite any political influence that his work might have given him, Dr. Lederberg remained diffident about the power of scientists.

“I happen not to believe that scientific training confers any magical wisdom about human affairs, and I would be loath to relegate the management of a nation to its scientists any more than to any other restricted group,” he once said.

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