"The Triangle of American Progress," "The Four Great Truths," "The Four Pillars of American Civilization," "The Five Pillars of the 21st Century," "The Nine Zones of Creativity," "The Fourteen Steps to Renewing American Civilization," The Thirty-Nine Steps to the Five Year Plan of the Six Flags of the Seven Brides for Seven Brothers of the Nine-Inch Nails of Renewing Civilizational Progress for 21st Century America, etc.I'm pretty sure the last one's a joke, but plausible.
I've devoted many electrons recently to the perils, and unlawfulness, of technocratic government. Newt's not alone in this, of course: Mitt Romney strays into the same territory, albeit minus the head-turning rapid-fire inconsistencies of Gingrich. And, of course, the left has been there for years.
But not before Marian Evans, better known under the pen name George Elliot. Her 1874 novel "Middlemarch" is among my favorites. One reason is her setting forth what has become known as the Casaubon delusion: an excessive and pathological search for all-inclusive answers. Such as -- I have argued -- global warming and scientific determinism. (To give a dying man his due, Christopher Hitchens sees religion the same way.)
Whether practiced by liberals or conservatives, we ought not to "impose our wishes on the world so as to make it conform to how we would like it to be." As Yuval Levin said (quoted here last week):
The framers were disdainful of the potential of technocratic know-it-alls whose abstract expertise was often of value only in what Hamilton calls, in Federalist 28, "the reveries of those political doctors whose sagacity disdains the admonitions of experimental instruction." And even men with expertise in administration should not be given too much power. In Federalist 68, Hamilton argues that, while good administration is very important, the idea that the best-administered regime is the best regime is a "political heresy." There is much more to government than administration.Rely on the legal forms and popular sovereignty in a representative democracy--not judges nor scientists. And markets, not five year plans. In other words, the Constitutional process, not the Casaubon delusion.
Anyone know a Presidential candidate with that platform?