|Author||Tikhomir R. Orevic|
|Publication Date||July 4, 2012|
Traditions and accepted opinions die hard, no matter what their origin. Even the most erroneous view, once it has taken root, can only be disproved with great difficulty. It has become a matter of conviction, or belief, and these are really feelings, and have no direct connection whatsoever with logic and truth; people will be as firmly convinced in their belief in a falsehood as in their belief in a truth. In course of time, individual, social, and national interests, both material and moral, become so firmly bound up with the existing belief that they render it all the more immune to criticism. In scientific questions an accepted opinion possesses as great a prestige as one which bears upon the material interests of an individual or nation. The number of those who trouble to go to the fountain-head and get their information at first hand is very small indeed; the rest perforce accept information and conclusions without verifying them. By dint of constant repetition a given information gains universal belief, as for the majority of people the repetition of an assertion has as much value as an argument, and one which they are least able to oppose.
(Typographical errors above are due to OCR software and don't occur in the book.)
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