PEOPLE & OPINION

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…

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.

Thrifty Tom and His Peanut Butter

The 52-​ounce can of Planter’s Peanuts came from Sam’s Club. Because they’re the best, really. Extra Large Virginia Peanuts. You’ll never find a bad one in the bunch.

The Union Project

“Work is about a search for daily meaning as well as daily bread.” –Studs Terkel

Beechwood School Garden, 1916

Over the past 10 years, school gardens have been cropping up across the Pittsburgh region. Spurred by chef-​activist Alice Waters’ 1995 Edible School Yard, the school garden movement has been praised for yielding both a harvest bounty and hearty educational benefits. In these outdoor classrooms, students learn about everything from…

The Egg Route

My dad likes to reminisce, and after most of our 22 family members had moved to the living room after a holiday dinner to nap or watch sports, I learned how the desire for farm fresh eggs connected my parents to both the city of Pittsburgh and their rural roots…

Ahmad Jamal, Jazz Master

I’ll bet that I’m the only musician ever to record a CD simply titled “Pittsburgh,” which is a tribute to my beloved hometown. It’s a “miracle city,” really. When it comes to industry, culture and the arts, Pittsburgh has contributed more to the world than most people can begin to…

Sept. 17, 1862 — The Day Pittsburgh Exploded

“Tread softly, this is consecrated dust. Forty five pure patriotic victims lie here, a sacrifice to freedom and civil liberty. A horrid memento of a most wicked rebellion. Patriots! These are patriots’ graves.” –Inscription on the memorial at Allegheny Cemetery

Breaking the Ice

When Apple co-​founder Steve Wozniak takes the Carnegie Music Hall stage Oct. 10, it will mark the 10th anniversary of what started as the Pittsburgh Middle East Institute and has grown to become the American Middle East Institute.

Bart, Pardee, Knapp, Strecker, Purnell, Carpenter, Watson

Dr. Robert Bart is the chief medical information officer of the Health Services Division of UPMC. He will oversee the health system’s efforts to advance the use of electronic health records. A Wisconsin native, he comes to Pittsburgh from Los Angeles, where he held the same position for the Department…

Cahouet, Romero, Needleman, Maher, Donahue, Katz, Robinson

Frank Cahouet, 85: Cahouet rescued Mellon Bank from the brink of failure in the 1980s and restored the fabled Pittsburgh institution to strength. The first outsider to lead the bank when he arrived in 1987, he inherited bad loans and excessive expenses that led to a loss of nearly $1

Looking Good

To flip through Hans Jonas’s album, which is indistinguishable on the outside from a family photo album, is to view Pittsburghers as if they were a family: a beloved aunt Sally Wiggin, a hardworking cousin Willie Stargell, and of course, everybody’s favorite neighbor, Fred Rogers.

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.
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