Pittsburgh Quarterly Contributors
Greg Curtis

Greg Curtis

Gregory Curtis is the founder and Chairman of Greycourt & Co., Inc., a wealth management firm. He is the author of three investment books, including his most recent, Family Capital. He can be reached at . Please note that this post is intended to provide interested persons with an insight on the capital markets and is not intended to promote any manager or firm, nor does it intend to advertise their performance. All opinions expressed are those of Gregory Curtis and do not necessarily represent the views of Greycourt & Co., Inc., the wealth management firm with which he is associated. The information in this report is not intended to address the needs of any particular investor.

It was a Good Idea in Theory…

Back in 1986 I launched a wealth management firm I conceitedly called “Greycourt” — it’s an anagram for my name. The firm met with modest success and in 1988 I incorporated it. I was probably the most hopeless, bumbling entrepreneur in the history of private enterprise, but somehow I’ve been with Greycourt for 31 years.

Democracy, Populism, and the Tyranny of the Experts, Part XI

As far as reigning in annoying experts is concerned, Congress and the judiciary are a bust, albeit with a few tiny bright spots on the distant horizon, twinkling away like dying lighthouses on a storm-​tossed sea. But what about the Presidency?

When Experts Judge the Experts

In my last post we examined the (pathetic) attempts of Congress to control the tyranny of the experts. Fortunately, Congress isn’t the only weapon in the battle against expert oppression, even at the Federal level. Let’s take a look at the judiciary.

Democracy, Populism, and the Tyranny of the Experts, Part IX

“The complexity of modern life has steadily whittled away the functions the ordinary citizen can intelligently and comprehendingly perform for himself…When he sits down to breakfast and looks at his morning paper, he reads about a whole range of vital and intricate issues and acknowledges…that he has not acquired the competence to judge…

Democracy, Populism, and the Tyranny of the Experts, Part VIII

Freedom is better, even when it’s worse. We might think about experts the way we think about stop signs (bear with me on this…)

Democracy, Populism, and the Tyranny of the Experts, Part VII

Viewed through the lens of “the tyranny of the experts,” it’s easy to see that in the last election Hillary Clinton was the candidate of the experts, while Donald Trump was the candidate of people who were tired of being tyrannized by them.

Democracy, Populism, and the Tyranny of the Experts, Part VI

Populism is an unsettling phenomenon in part because we don’t know where it will end. And we don’t know where it will end because populism isn’t itself a governing idea — it’s a response to the perceived failure of other governing ideas.

Democracy, Populism, and the Tyranny of the Experts, Part V

If we wanted to — well, we do want to — we could go back 2,500 years and identify the exact point when human civilization went off the rails on the subject of experts.

Democracy, Populism, and the Tyranny of the Experts, Part IV

Not that long ago — say, when my parents were starting out in married life — building a sound investment portfolio was a piece of cake. You bought some Blue Chip stocks and some Triple A bonds and you were done.

Democracy, Populism, and the Tyranny of the Experts, Part III

The first thing we do, let’s kill all the lawyers. (Shakespeare, Henry VI, Part II, identifying the first step in building a better society)
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