People and Process in Social Security

By Karl De Schweinitz; American Council on Education Committee on Education and Social Security | Go to book overview

PREFACE

The spread, both in width and depth, of the multifarious branches of knowledge during the last hundred odd years has confronted us with a queer dilemma. We feel clearly that we are only now beginning to acquire reliable material for welding together the sum-total of all that is known into a whole; but, on the other hand, it has become next to impossible for a single mind fully to command more than a small specialized portion of it.

I can see no other escape from this dilemma (lest our true aim be lost forever) than that some of us should venture to embark on a synthesis of facts and theories, albeit with second-hand and incomplete knowledge of some of them-- and at the risk of making fools of ourselves.

-- ERWIN SCHRÖDINGER1

WHETHER ONE BELIEVES that the best government is that which governs least or that governmental activity is an essential means of achieving the greatest good of the greatest number, he will, on dispassionately reviewing the first half of the twentieth century, be convinced of the enormous improvement that has taken place in the quality of the public service. Among the many factors that have contributed to this progress is the emergence of federal, state, and local administration as a career, with all that a career implies in the employment of fact and method, in study and workmanship. Significant of this development is the increasing demand by both citizen and official for a personnel adequately equipped for their work through education and training.

The teacher who undertakes to respond to this demand is

____________________
1
Erwin Schrödinger, What Is Life? ( New York: Cambridge University Press, The Macmillan Co., 1945), Preface.

-v-

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