Quotes about fake

A collection of quotes on the topic of falseness.

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Alexander Fleming photo
Lotfi A. Zadeh photo
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Lotfi A. Zadeh photo
Lotfi A. Zadeh photo

„To what degree is something true or false?“

—  Lotfi A. Zadeh Electrical engineer and computer scientist 1921 - 2017
Attributed to Zadeh in: " What is Fuzzy Logic? http://www.azer.com/aiweb/categories/magazine/24_folder/24_articles/24_fuzzywhat.html" in: Azerbaijan international Vol 2.4 (Winter 1994). p. 47 This quote is introduced as "The question Zadeh always insists upon asking".

Barack Obama photo

„Much of the debate in Washington has put forward a false choice when it comes to Libya.“

—  Barack Obama 44th President of the United States of America 1961
Context: Much of the debate in Washington has put forward a false choice when it comes to Libya. On the one hand, some question why America should intervene at all — even in limited ways — in this distant land. They argue that there are many places in the world where innocent civilians face brutal violence at the hands of their government, and America should not be expected to police the world, particularly when we have so many pressing needs here at home. It’s true that America cannot use our military wherever repression occurs. And given the costs and risks of intervention, we must always measure our interests against the need for action. But that cannot be an argument for never acting on behalf of what’s right. In this particular country — Libya — at this particular moment, we were faced with the prospect of violence on a horrific scale. We had a unique ability to stop that violence: an international mandate for action, a broad coalition prepared to join us, the support of Arab countries, and a plea for help from the Libyan people themselves. We also had the ability to stop Qaddafi’s forces in their tracks without putting American troops on the ground. To brush aside America’s responsibility as a leader and — more profoundly — our responsibilities to our fellow human beings under such circumstances would have been a betrayal of who we are. Some nations may be able to turn a blind eye to atrocities in other countries. The United States of America is different. And as President, I refused to wait for the images of slaughter and mass graves before taking action.

Harry Harlow photo
 Socrates photo

„False words are not only evil in themselves, but they infect the soul with evil.“

—  Socrates classical Greek Athenian philosopher -469 - -399 BC
Phaedo 115e literally: 'For know well', he said, 'o dearest Kriton, that to not speak well is not only sinful by itself, but lets evil intrude into the soul.'(εὖ γὰρ ἴσθι, ἦ δ᾽ ὅς, ὦ ἄριστε Κρίτων, τὸ μὴ καλῶς λέγειν οὐ μόνον εἰς αὐτὸ τοῦτο πλημμελές, ἀλλὰ καὶ κακόν τι ἐμποιεῖ ταῖς ψυχαῖς.)

Paul Ricoeur photo
Denis Diderot photo

„He does not confound it with probability; he takes for true what is true, for false what is false, for doubtful what is doubtful, and probable what is only probable. He does more, and here you have a great perfection of the philosopher: when he has no reason by which to judge, he knows how to live in suspension of judgment…
The philosophical spirit is, then, a spirit of observation and exactness, which relates everything to true principles…“

—  Denis Diderot French Enlightenment philosopher and encyclopædist 1713 - 1784
Context: Reason is to the philosopher what grace is to the Christian. Grace causes the Christian to act, reason the philosopher. Other men are carried away by their passions, their actions not being preceded by reflection: these are the men who walk in darkness. On the other hand, the philosopher, even in his passions, acts only after reflection; he walks in the dark, but by a torch. The philosopher forms his principles from an infinity of particular observations. Most people adopt principles without thinking of the observations that have produced them, they believe the maxims exist, so to speak, by themselves. But the philosopher takes maxims from their source; he examines their origin; he knows their proper value, and he makes use of them only in so far as they suit him. Truth is not for the philosopher a mistress who corrupts his imagination and whom he believes to be found everywhere; he contents himself with being able to unravel it where he can perceive it. He does not confound it with probability; he takes for true what is true, for false what is false, for doubtful what is doubtful, and probable what is only probable. He does more, and here you have a great perfection of the philosopher: when he has no reason by which to judge, he knows how to live in suspension of judgment... The philosophical spirit is, then, a spirit of observation and exactness, which relates everything to true principles... Article on Philosophy, Vol. 25, p. 667, as quoted in Main Currents of Western Thought : Readings in Western European Intellectual History from the Middle Ages to the Present (1978) by Franklin Le Van Baumer Variant translation: Reason is to the philosopher what grace is to the Christian. Grace moves the Christian to act, reason moves the philosopher. Other men walk in darkness; the philosopher, who has the same passions, acts only after reflection; he walks through the night, but it is preceded by a torch. The philosopher forms his principles on an infinity of particular observations. … He does not confuse truth with plausibility; he takes for truth what is true, for forgery what is false, for doubtful what is doubtful, and probable what is probable. … The philosophical spirit is thus a spirit of observation and accuracy.

 Homér photo

„He knew how to say many false things that were like true sayings.“

—  Homér Ancient Greek epic poet, author of the Iliad and the Odyssey 750

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Paul Dirac photo

„If we are honest — and scientists have to be — we must admit that religion is a jumble of false assertions, with no basis in reality. The very idea of God is a product of the human imagination.“

—  Paul Dirac theoretical physicist 1902 - 1984
Context: If we are honest — and scientists have to be — we must admit that religion is a jumble of false assertions, with no basis in reality. The very idea of God is a product of the human imagination. It is quite understandable why primitive people, who were so much more exposed to the overpowering forces of nature than we are today, should have personified these forces in fear and trembling. But nowadays, when we understand so many natural processes, we have no need for such solutions. I can't for the life of me see how the postulate of an Almighty God helps us in any way. What I do see is that this assumption leads to such unproductive questions as why God allows so much misery and injustice, the exploitation of the poor by the rich and all the other horrors He might have prevented. If religion is still being taught, it is by no means because its ideas still convince us, but simply because some of us want to keep the lower classes quiet. Quiet people are much easier to govern than clamorous and dissatisfied ones. They are also much easier to exploit. Religion is a kind of opium that allows a nation to lull itself into wishful dreams and so forget the injustices that are being perpetrated against the people. Hence the close alliance between those two great political forces, the State and the Church. Both need the illusion that a kindly God rewards — in heaven if not on earth — all those who have not risen up against injustice, who have done their duty quietly and uncomplainingly. That is precisely why the honest assertion that God is a mere product of the human imagination is branded as the worst of all mortal sins. Remarks made during the Fifth Solvay International Conference (October 1927), as quoted in Physics and Beyond: Encounters and Conversations (1971) by Werner Heisenberg, pp. 85-86; these comments prompted the famous remark later in the day by Wolfgang Pauli: "Well, our friend Dirac, too, has a religion, and its guiding principle is "God does not exist and Dirac is His prophet." Variant translations and paraphrases of that comment are listed in the "Quotes about Dirac" section below.

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Hannah Arendt photo

„The ideal subject of totalitarian rule is not the convinced Nazi or the convinced Communist, but people for whom the distinction between fact and fiction (i. e., the reality of experience) and the distinction between true and false (i. e., the standards of thought) no longer exist.“

—  Hannah Arendt, The Origins of Totalitarianism
Part 3, Ch. 13, § 3. On the subject the ideal subjects for a totalitarian authority. Source: The Origins of Totalitarianism, published in 1951. As quoted by Scroll Staff (December 04, 2017): Ideas in literature: Ten things Hannah Arendt said that are eerily relevant in today’s political times https://web.archive.org/web/20191001213756/https://scroll.in/article/856549/ten-things-hannah-arendt-said-that-are-eerily-relevant-in-todays-political-times. In: Scroll.in. Archived from the original https://scroll.in/article/856549/ten-things-hannah-arendt-said-that-are-eerily-relevant-in-todays-political-times on October 1, 2019.

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