Micromanagement: The Dangerous Side of Specialization

Ron Landridge  1997  Published in: Technocracy Digest, 2nd quarter 1997, No. 324  

Specialization is being thrust upon us in almost every realm of human endeavor. Magazines such as Scientific American, as well as the multitude of trade, educational, and in-house publications that swamp us every day, indicate that knowledge and understanding is accelerating at a rate that can be overwhelming even to the trained scientist and technologist. The message is clear. As the accumulation of knowledge adds to an evergreater understanding of the intricacies of nature, this volume of information necessarily constricts the particular area which can be investigated by any individual or group.

The subdivision of faculties, such as biology, has been going on for years. However, the research in these sub-divisions, for example molecular biology, has resulted in even further refinements, to the point that whole groups can now spend years on a particular project that is only an infinitesimal part of the work being done in that field. That this is necessary, is selfevident. The volume of knowledge makes it impossible for anyone to be a specialist in more than one or two finite areas.

In the realm of science, particularly at the level of basic research, peer publications, meetings, and conferences keep scientists generally informed of the progress being made in their particular area. Even then, some information is left in limbo, only to be rediscovered by someone else, and used as a helpful starting point for a new avenue of exploration in their field.

In the field of applied science, increasing specialization is evident. Engineers trained in environmental sciences may specialize in fresh water purification, sewage treatment, chemical decontamination, nuclear waste, etc. As with basic science, the increasing complexities of living in a modern technological world are forcing engineers and technicians to focus more narrowly in their chosen field.

Given the increasing complexity of the problems, it is inevitable that even peer review does not necessarily foster unanimity in the search for either direction or solution. When the limitations of the Price System debt operation are factored in, it is surprising that there is any agreement on the options available.

This specialization can lead to such a narrowing of perspective, that the overall problem is forgotten in the search for a local solution. The decision whether to treat human effluent in one location, without due consideration of the impact that it can have on other areas, is now quite common. If you are up-river, the solution to your problem may be quite different from, and not acceptable to, those down-river from you.

In addition, the involvement of individuals or groups that have no expertise in the area under discussion, can have serious consequences on the final solution. The disgusting condition of the air, land, cities, and waterways of this Continent, is testimony of the destructive results of financial and political manipulation and interference in purely physical matters, by groups having no expertise in science or physical law.

What, then, is the answer to this conundrum? Is there a method that can insure that the proper level of expertise is coupled with the ability to integrate all the attendant problems, so that the solution is indeed correct and total? Of course there is!

Howard Scott, the founder of Technocracy, understood that this facet of human behavior was the bane of social organization, and that if we were to overcome this blockage to the solution of North America’s unique problems, a fully integrated structure was necessary. This concept is all the more remarkable, given that it was conceived many years before the current explosion of scientific knowledge.

The structural sequence specified by Scott as necessary for a smooth social operation, reflects the need for not only the specialist, but also the need to understand the interrelationship of the whole. Whether the whole is just a sum of the individual parts, or a more dynamic force having much greater potential, is entirely dependent on its functional ability. The key to this is specialization, tempered with the ability to envision the integration of the whole.

It was Scott, with the Technical Alliance, who first saw the interrelationship of the physical and financial operation as it pertained to North America. This pulling together of all of the physical and financial trends was an undertaking of a scope never applied before, or for that matter since, in the area of human social interaction.

This integration of all the available information concluded that only upon the replacement of the non-measurable debt structure that is crippling this Continent, with one more attuned to the physical realities of modern technology, could the future be assured.

Technocrats may be specialists in their own field, but they know that the only way to understand the problem is to look at the whole picture. Only by studying the trends as evidenced in all fields of human endeavor, can we formulate the solutions necessary for an assured future. The designing of residential housing; transportation systems; water, sewage and electrical power generation and distribution; health and education; food and consumer production and distribution, is the province of the specialists in each field working in concert with every other field. The design for human living is too important to be left to any individual or small group. Because of this, Technocrats do not discuss the intricacies of these specific areas of human endeavor.

It is Technocracy’s analysis and design that we put forward for public scrutiny. Only after acceptance of this analysis and design, and the physical health of this Continent is known, can the proper controls be put into place to ensure a high standard of living for all citizens. Only Technocracy and Technocrats are working to this end. We will settle for nothing short of success.


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