Friday, March 4, 2016

Bad ideas can only survive with censorship

Forcing ideologies onto people by censoring criticism and differing points of view has been a staple of totalitarian regimes during the entire history or humanity. It's no different today. The only difference is that today we have the internet, which allows the dissemination of ideas worldwide a million times faster than before. It also allows criticism of those ideas by anybody in the world, pretty much immediately when the idea is presented.

How to distinguish good ideas from bad ones? There's at least one criterion that can be used to see if an idea is a bad one: If it needs censorship to survive. If its adherents promote silencing, censoring and banning of criticism and dissenting ideas.

Good ideas welcome criticism and scrutiny. They thrive on challenges. If they can endure the test of criticism, they become stronger and more reliable.

If your idea cannot survive criticism, and requires shutting down all such criticism, then your idea is bad. It doesn't matter what it is, it's a bad idea, and should be discarded. Good ideas do not abhor criticism, but the exact opposite.

(Note that this does not mean that an idea welcoming criticism automatically makes it a good one. This just means that an idea that abhors criticism is most certainly a bad one. Welcoming and thriving on criticism is a necessary but not sufficient requirement for good ideas.)

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