Intoxicated by Knowledge; Enemy of Freedom

Friedrich HayekEver since the beginning of modern science, the best minds have recognized that “the range of acknowledged ignorance will grow with the advance of science.” “In science the more we know, the more extensive the contact with nescience [lack of knowledge or awareness].”

Unfortunately, the popular effect of this scientific advance has been a belief, seemingly shared by many scientists, that the range of our ignorance is steadily diminishing and that we can therefore aim at more comprehensive and deliberate control of all human activities. It is for this reason that those intoxicated by the advance of knowledge so often become the enemies of freedom …

The more men know, the smaller the share of all that knowledge becomes that any one mind can absorb. The more civilized we become, the more relatively ignorant must each individual be of the facts on which the working of his civilization depends.

Friedrich August von Hayek
(1899-1992), Nobel Laureate of Economic Sciences 1974

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