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Ep. 0197: DHP Villains: Woodrow Wilson, Part 4

Published on Feb 26, 2020

In this fourth installment in the epic DHP Villains Woodrow Wilson series, we're detail-stripping what CJ considers to be perhaps the single most important piece of writing in Woodrow Wilson's career, the essay "The Study of Administration," which was published in the July 1887 issue of Political Science Quarterly, when Wilson was only 30 years old and just 2 years into his professional academic career. Wilson never significantly deviated from the ideas laid down in this essay over the remainder of his academic career; he also did quite a lot of implement them as President of the United States, and one can see the influence of these ideas on the growth & development of the US government's administrative apparatus ever since. (Though the real-world results have been far from the ideal of benevolence, efficiency, and transparency that Wilson described!)

Join CJ as he takes this essay apart with critical analysis, and, near the end, shares the insights of Alexis de Tocqueville who, writing approximately 50 years before Wilson wrote "The Study of Administration," identified and warned about just the sort of mixture of democracy and bureaucratic despotism that men like Wilson would eventually advocate & usher in.

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External Links


CJ’s Picks: Amazon Affiliate Links

Woodrow Wilson and the Roots of Modern Liberalism (American Intellectual Culture) by Ronald J. Pestritto

Woodrow Wilson: The Essential Political Writings: The Essential Political Writings edited by Ronald J. Pestritto

Propaganda by Edward Bernays

Public Opinion (Critical Assessment of Functional Democratic Government) by Walter Lipmann

Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media by Edward Herman & Noam Chomsky

Democracy in America: The Complete and Unabridged Volumes I and II (Bantam Classics) by Alexis de Tocqueville

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