The Relativity of Wrong by Isaac Asimov, or, nitpicking on Socrates / by mirena

My brain gets poisoned by news and chewing through recent events with the teeth of media. So I often find myself in the company of dead people. The thoughts of man and women from the past, with the perspective of the occurred future. Often find solace in science fiction, with the freaks and creatures that inhabit strange worlds. I recently read a science fiction book written in 1964 by a Czechoslovakian science fiction author Ludvík Souček. It was a throwback to Jules Verne but naive, from a 21st century points of view, in its basking in communist propaganda. Yet I didn't put the book down as it walked me through a time when selfies from space weren't very common and humanity was not yet a space faring civilization, yet on the verge of it and dreaming of what is out in the void.

What was I saying - I already forgot why I began this page to begin with, but what Isaac Asimov is saying in his essay is that there is a critical mass to being wrong. Sometimes a difference between a 0 and 0.00000000000003 makes all the difference.

Read  the entire essay here - The Relativity of Wrong by Isaac Asimov.

An excerpt where Asimov literally nitpicks on Socrates but is not entirely wrong in doing that:

First, let me dispose of Socrates because I am sick and tired of this pretense that knowing you know nothing is a mark of wisdom. No one knows nothing. In a matter of days, babies learn to recognize their mothers.

Socrates would agree, of course, and explain that knowledge of trivia is not what he means. He means that in the great abstractions over which human beings debate, one should start without preconceived, unexamined notions, and that he alone knew this. (What an enormously arrogant claim!)

In his discussions of such matters as "What is justice?" or "What is virtue?" he took the attitude that he knew nothing and had to be instructed by others. (This is called "Socratic irony," for Socrates knew very well that he knew a great deal more than the poor souls he was picking on.) By pretending ignorance, Socrates lured others into propounding their views on such abstractions. Socrates then, by a series of ignorant-sounding questions, forced the others into such a mélange of self-contradictions that they would finally break down and admit they didn't know what they were talking about.

It is the mark of the marvelous toleration of the Athenians that they let this continue for decades and that it wasn't till Socrates turned seventy that they broke down and forced him to drink poison.