So the more you know, the more you don’t know. And if you’re smart, you know it!

— Bill Bonner

History Is Mostly Bunk

Yes, we’re serious. History only tells part of the story. And as Henry Ford put it, it is mostly “bunk.” A person who is ignorant of history knows nothing. But at least he is aware that his ignorance is unblemished by phony knowledge. The person who knows something, on the other hand, usually has negative knowledge. That is, he thinks he knows something, but what he knows is either untrue… or so sketchy and misleading that he really knows less than nothing.

Reaching for a broader and more controversial point, in order to “know” any history, you must not know far more of it. History pulls out a few details and focuses on them as if they were the only – or at least the most important – part of what happened. In order to “know” this history, you must ignore all the many more complexities, ironies, and contradictions that cast doubt on it.

So the more you know, the more you don’t know. And if you’re smart, you know it!

If that makes any sense…”

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