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Democracy and the Origins of the American Regulatory State$
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Samuel DeCanio

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780300198782

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: May 2016

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300198782.001.0001

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Charles Francis Adams Jr. and Bureaucracy

Charles Francis Adams Jr. and Bureaucracy

(p.180) Chapter 10 Charles Francis Adams Jr. and Bureaucracy
Democracy and the Origins of the American Regulatory State

Samuel DeCanio

Yale University Press

This chapter examines why a commission such as the Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) was created to regulate the railroads by focusing on the views of railroad expert Charles Francis Adams Jr. It first considers John Reagan's opposition to bureaucracy, and especially to the idea of a regulatory commission, before turning to a discussion of liberal reformers' justifications for commissions. It argues that members of the Republican Party's liberal reform faction favored the creation of an independent commission to mitigate the more radical implications of Reagan's bill. It also explains how the institutional form introduced by Adams and other liberal reformers contributed to state formation and how the creation of the ICC inaugurated a form of state authority that was increasingly federal, regulatory, and bureaucratic.

Keywords:   state authority, Interstate Commerce Commission, railroads, Charles Francis Adams Jr., John Reagan, bureaucracy, liberal reformers, Republican Party, state formation

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