Nov 19, 2021

If 50 Million People Say a Foolish Thing

“If fifty million people say a foolish thing ... it is still a foolish thing.”

- Anatole France

What a perfect quote to articulate the ad numeram fallacy!

Per My Logical Fallacy:

“The argumentum ad numeram wrongly equates the numbers in support of a contention with the correctness of it. Ideas which have mass support are not necessarily more likely to be right; but the ad numeram supposes that they are ...

“If ideas were decided by numbers, no new ones would ever be admitted. Every new idea starts out as a minority viewpoint and gains acceptance only if the evidence for it wins converts over from the prevailing view. If numbers are the test, then Giordano Bruno was wrong when he said the earth moved around the sun, and the authorities were right to burn him at the stake.”