"Collective judgment of new ideas is so often wrong that it is arguable that progress depends on individuals being free to back their own judgment despite collective disapproval."
Sir William Arthur Lewis
(1915-1991) Saint Lucian economist, Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics (1979)
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Reader comments about this quote:
As the efficacy/usefulness of new ideas have to be judged either by rigorous logic or actualization attempts - a 'collective judgement' can be just an opinion or wish-vote, hence -- more than the collective judgment 'progress depends on individuals being free to back their own judgment despite collective disapproval' - provided of course the individual in question is not mistaking his/her 'wishful thinking' as any rigorous logical thinking!
 -- Vedapushpa, Bangalore - India     
    At best, "collective judgment" is a misnomer and as an abstract concept, it is an oxymoron. I have tried to subpoena John Q. Public (as well as countless derivations thereof) to be able to face the accusing injured party. It has been proven over and over and over again that the collective does not judge, can't be judged nor does it exist with a judgment. Because there is no collective judgment (nor can there be), no ideas can derive therefrom, right or wrong. The collective is a mythological tyrant, despot and malefactor. "Progress" is a dependent understanding of lawful executions. It is the individual person that interfaces with the law by his/her actions. Many individuals united, each having an illegitimate thought, may indeed hinder a lawful expression.
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    Absolutely! Groupthink is not only easy to manipulate, it does not require much substance -- appearances are sufficient. Only the 'loonies' dare say, "the emperor is wearing no clothes."
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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    There can never be a collective judgment ,, a collective opinion is possible and more commonly a crowd behavior and none of them can give a responsible alternative. That is possible by one or a small number of similarly intelligent persons who are objective enough sans any personal emotional prejdices.  

     -- Vedapushpa, Bangalore - India     
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     -- Mary, MI      
     -- Ronw13, OR      
    The fact that half the world has been conned into believing in human-caused 'climate change' is a perfect example.  The goal is the total regulation of the use of energy by people  ultimate power really.  CO2 is already being treated as a pollutant (!!) when it is in fact a powerhouse for life.  CO2 levels in the air could quadruple (as they have been in the distant past) and life would be teeming.  Every model predicting the rising global temperatures and ocean levels has been wrong.  There is no proof at all, only theory.  The facts themselves discredit the theory.  All one has to do is look at the proposed solutions to understand why.  Politicians are poised to make billions on carbon credit schemes.  Al Gore is responsible for replacing incandescent lights with mercury-filled fluorescent lights, and has made a fortune in the new market.  He's also ready to cash in on the carbon credit market.  These are schemes for funneling more power and wealth to the ruling class, nothing more.  Not a one has cut back their own energy-hogging life style, Al Gore included.  When individuals think for themselves they make themselves unfit for the mob.
     -- E Archer, NYC     
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