Wednesday, April 19, 2017

“The individual who investigates”

From the historian Timothy Snyder, writing about the importance of distinguishing between truth and falsehood:

“What is truth?” Sometimes people ask this question because they wish to do nothing. Generic cynicism makes us feel hip and alternative even as we slip along with our fellow citizens into a morass of indifference. It is your ability to discern facts that makes you an individual, and our collective trust in common knowledge that makes us a society. The individual who investigates is also the citizen who builds. The leader who dislikes the investigators is a potential tyrant.

On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons from the Twentieth Century (New York: Tim Duggan Books, 2017).
Also from this book
“Believe in truth”

[Widely available on the Internets: an earlier short list of twenty lessons.]

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