America’s obsession with central planning and controlling individuals that began in the 20th century can actually be traced back to one man.
Here’s a transcript of our conversation:
Brittany: Hi, Ronni.
Ronni: Hey, Brittany.
Brittany: So, central planning is something we’ve talked about a lot. That’s when governments think they know best for people, and it’s kind of inherent to all governments. I think any government you have is going to get to the point where they think like, oh, well I can do this better. That’s why they’re in government. But in America, it got particularly bad around the 19 hundreds. Today I want to talk about not just why that happened, but who did it. There is a story of a guy that’s pretty nuts and his name, so remember this name, you’ll impress everybody because I didn’t know who this person was until I was last month. So, his name is Frederick Winslow Taylor.
Ronni: Frederick Winslow Taylor, okay, I have to remember it. I have to impress him by now. Frederick Winslow Taylor. Got it.
Brittany: And there’s a great documentary called Trust Us. You can watch it talk about him. Let’s talk about what he invented. And he invented something called scientific management. So, he was obsessed with precision. He wanted to do everything in the most efficient way he could. And he thought that if you were really, really smart and you treated people like cogs in a machine, like a production line, that you could have the best outcome in society. So, a lot of that was believing that there was only one ideal way to get things right. And this was especially true at first for him with factories. And he believed that basically, and this is almost a direct quote, that some people are stupid. They’re like oxen and they need to work oxen jobs and that they should be told what to do by smart people, which the government would call their experts. Now, I want you to keep that expert and I saying that in quotes.
Ronni: There’s still people today who think of us.
Brittany: We’re going to get it because this is how it all stuck sky. The reason that we have all the craziness we have today is because of Frederick Winslow Taylor. Literally, it all goes back to this one dude. So, this is the epitome of what they call top-down government, right? This belief is that there is an elite class of people that should be telling the rest of us peasants what to do. And in this case, it was like the scientists. And this was a thought that really belittled the individual because you weren’t seen as the individual. He called them oxen, right? And an oxen is this big strong, it’s not a, hold on, it’s not like a bull. What is it? How do you describe an oxen? It’s a big animal.
Ronni: It’s a large cow.
Brittany: Okay, so, oh, I just knocked something over. So, yes, and it can carry or pull big wagons and it can do a lot of hard work. So, basically, it was treating people. They were only big animals there for work. That’s the kind of thing it was. So, the problem is it’s become really popular and schools like Harvard and other Ivy League schools is what they call these really prestigious colleges. They began teaching that this was the way, this was the, that we were going to an ideal society. We just needed to hand all our decision-making over to these experts and to plan. And this is actually where you get the birth of something called progressivism or progressive is what you’d call the people because they thought that to progress society or to make progress in society, we all had to be controlled. Now, the funny thing is, I said this was taught at places like Harvard. Now Harvard is a school where people think that they come out of there and that they know everything. I am not saying Harvard’s not a good school that had some good things happen and its history. But Harvard people who go to these schools, they consider themselves the elite that they know better than all of us because they went to this fancy school. But it’s, there’s a funny joke that, and I’m sure some of our listeners went to Harvard or their parents, but that’s like people who go to Harvard always brag about how they go to Harvard or Princeton or Yale. These schools, they always let you know. And again, they had this belief that they were just better than other people because they knew how to plan for people. And if you want to know just how evil this was, so the in Soviet Union, that’s where what’s now like Russia, but it used to be called the Soviet Union. And that’s where we’ve talked about Vladimir Lenin before. And Stalin, why can’t I remember Stalin’s first name? Joseph? Joseph Stalin. So, these people who were the epitome of evil socialists killing their own people, they didn’t fall in line. They loved Frederick Winslow Taylor. They thought he was a genius. And so at first in America, people weren’t having this because Americans at their core were very individualistic. Even though we’ve gone a long way down the path, Americans still, they still question more than a lot of other places. So, imagine how happy Frederick Winslow Taylor and all his little gang of people who think they know better than everyone were when the Soviet Union invited them to come over and speak about this great plan they have. Because of the Soviet Union, they were these socialist governments. They were treating people like they were only there to be factory workers. That was their job to do whatever the government told them to do and to do it as efficiently as possible. It doesn’t matter what your pursuit of happiness is, you don’t need to own property or all that. So that should have been a first sign. If these terrible governments are inviting you to come speak, you should probably be a little bit scared, I think. So this begins though, this whole belief in the rule of the expert or expert rule. And this is going to go into the Great Depression. And Frederick Winslow Taylor is going to play a big part in this because of the Great Depression, we’ve talked about that. So it won’t go into it a lot, but that’s when the economy crashed and the economy crashed. A lot of it was because of government intervention. And what did they do when the government intervention caused the Great Depression? They tried to fix it with surprise, surprise, surprise, more government intervention. And this is where the pattern is exactly. And Frederick Winslow Taylor, he was the one that was like, all right, listen, FDR, that’s president at the time. He’s like, I know how to fix this. We’re going to control everything. We’re going to tell people how much macaroni should cost. We’re going to tell people how much chickens can cost. We’re going to tell people who sell chickens how much they can sell the chickens for. We’re going to tell farmers to kill some of their crops and their livestock that will make the price go up because it’s like the supply and demand thing. They’re like, okay, if there are less things, then people will spend more to buy them. So, let’s just kill half the crops and this makes no sense. So this was their plan, and there were these brothers called the Schechter Brothers, and they had been in the chicken business. I mean their ancestors, even their name in, I can’t remember what languages actually meant something about chicken. Yeah, chicken last names. That’s how they used to be derived. I’m trying to think of one from your occupation. From your occupation. The Last names end in, man, I’m trying to think. I can’t think of a last name right now. Any last name Freeman is one, but that’s different. That’d be like, I’m trying to think of something like that where it’s like, I don’t remember, but from Blacksmith Smith. There you go. Smith is from Blacksmith. So yeah, names used to be what your father did or what your family did. So Schechter had something to do with chickens. They had been in the chicken biz for so long and they lost their entire company because the government was like, no, you can’t sell chickens for this much. And they tried to regulate and they regulated them into poverty, and they actually went to the Supreme Court and they won. The problem is the damage had already been done. They ended up going bankrupt. They didn’t have a penny to their name when the last of the brothers who were in the business died. So, that is what expert rule gets us. So, then there was this great, this thing called Pruitt Ego and this, or I go, this is where the government’s like we know how to build the ideal houses for everyone to have a house in America. So, they built this house and it was like they only built an elevator every third floor. So, they’re like, this is great. People will learn how to be communities. So, you had to get off on your floor and then get off on another floor and hike up the stairs. But you know what happened? People started shooting out the lights. And so then the stairwells became places where people would get robbed and beat up, and it was all this bad stuff. And then it ended up being that you could only live in the house if you were a single-family household. So, fathers were leaving so their kids could live in this house. It was a disaster. They were making all these things because they thought it would be good, ended up being one of the most disastrous housing projects that anyone in the country has ever tried to plan. All these attempts where they were like, we know best even for architecture, and they couldn’t get anything, right? And yet we were still putting all of our faith in them. Now let’s talk about more modern day. The food pyramids. And we’ve talked about this before on the show, the government was like, oh, here is the ideal way that you should eat. And if you look at this food pyramid, it is nuts. Like all the things.
Ronni: It’s the worst way you should eat.
Brittany: It’s like processed carbs that now are linked to corn, which is linked to all sorts of health issues. And if you look at why a lot of the reason for why these foods were on there was because the government was subsidizing the industries when we were giving them money and propping them up. So it was crazy. So people just believed, and it started with this Frederick Winslow Taylor guy, they believed that the government knew what was best. We shouldn’t question it. We should just listen to them because they were smarter than us. And what do we know? But it’s funny because they didn’t know anything, and it was proved over and over again. The Great Depression lasted so long because the government kept coming up with these really bad ideas. This housing project was really bad because the government thought it knew better than letting the private free market build its own houses. So, then we get to C and COVID, I think is all still in our minds. How many times did we hear trust the experts or follow the science? And then what is it? Fauci said, if you are questioning me, you hate science and all of this. And it became.
Ronni: He also say, I am the science or something?
Brittany: I am the science that man, I tell you. And that’s the thing. It was so crazy because you had all these experts. I’m saying that scare quotes say that they knew what was best for us, but they didn’t. And it changed. First it was don’t wear masks, they’re not going to help. Then it was, if you don’t wear masks, you’re killing everybody because blah, blah, blah. And then it went back to like, oh no, don’t wear masks. And in the years or the year that COVID has really been calming down the CDC slowly put out a thing, it’s like, oh yeah, cloth masks really don’t do anything. Or we don’t even know what’s going to happen with vaccinations yet. We dunno what new experts way they’re going to be wrong in the future. And so it’s so scary because you think about everything we’ve been going through in the last three years, can you believe it? Three years. And a lot of it has come down to experts thinking they know best, they know best. So, they should close down the economy. They know best. So, they should tell non-essential businesses. And I’m saying that in scare quotes too, that they can’t be open because they don’t think that’s what you need during a pandemic. And it hurts a lot of people. It hurts A lot of businesses never recovered. A lot of emotional damage happened to people during COVID because they isolated from people thinking that they were going to get people sick. And then they lost their minds a little bit because it’s lonely. We’re social creatures as humans. And all of this came down to this one guy, Frederick Winslow Taylor, and his belief in scientific management is what they called it. He thought that he knew him, and his elite friends knew more than you do to plan for yourself. And so, let’s remember, and I think this is something we’ve talked about a lot, that the government doesn’t know what’s best for you. The government cannot know what’s best for you. They don’t know you, so they can’t centrally plan. And not only can they not or should they not do it, it doesn’t work ever. So, tried to get that story in really quickly. But like I said, there’s a great documentary. I’ll put in this show notes called Trust Us that talks about it. It’s only like 30 minutes, and I think it’s really good. I know some homeschool parents really liked it, but yeah. So, that’s your lesson for today and press everybody by knowing that guy’s name, Frederick Winslow Taylor, Frederick wins Taylor out there. See you. Remember. I remember. So don’t forget to like and subscribe to the podcast. And until next time, we’ll talk to you soon.
Ronni: All right, see you soon.