Some people say, "How can you live without knowing?" I do not know what they mean. I always live without knowing. That is easy. How you get to know is what I want to know.
This next one is dangerous, by the way. I think you're only allowed to ignore the experts if you're going to go out there and duplicate their work, or even beter, do the work they haven't done. It would be hideously stupid, and deeply wrong, to use this quote to justify sitting in your armchair and maintaining that the aliens built the pyramids.
Science is the belief in the ignorance of experts.
On that topic, by the way:
It is not unscientific to make a guess, although many people who are not in science think it is. Some years ago I had a conversation with a layman about flying saucers — because I am scientific I know all about flying saucers! I said “I don’t think there are flying saucers”. So my antagonist said, “Is it impossible that there are flying saucers? Can you prove that it’s impossible?” “No”, I said, “I can’t prove it’s impossible. It’s just very unlikely”. At that he said, “You are very unscientific. If you can’t prove it impossible then how can you say that it’s unlikely?” But that is the way that is scientific. It is scientific only to say what is more likely and what less likely, and not to be proving all the time the possible and impossible. To define what I mean, I might have said to him, "Listen, I mean that from my knowledge of the world that I see around me, I think that it is much more likely that the reports of flying saucers are the results of the known irrational characteristics of terrestrial intelligence than of the unknown rational efforts of extra-terrestrial intelligence." It is just more likely. That is all.
What I'd like to say to the UFO guys is: yes, we skeptics are guessing. You're not doing even that. Or, to give a Feynman quote that pretty much sums up the whole ancient aliens-ufos-paranormality industry:
Anyway, I have to argue about flying saucers on the beach with people, you know. And I was interested in this: they keep arguing that it is possible. And that's true. It is possible. They do not appreciate that the problem is not to demonstrate whether it's possible or not but whether it's going on or not.
And now for something completely different:
There were certain things I didn't like, such as tipping. I thought we should be paid more, and not have to have any tips. But when I proposed that to the boss, I got nothing but laughter. She told everybody, "Richard doesn't want his tips, hee, hee, hee; he doesn't want his tips, ha, ha, ha." The world is full of this kind of dumb smart-alec who doesn't understand anything.
Hear, hear. And, finally, for those of us still struggling with the notion of economic freedom versus government planning:
The real question of government versus private enterprise is argued on too philosophical and abstract a basis. Theoretically, planning may be good. But nobody has ever figured out the cause of government stupidity—and until they do (and find the cure), all ideal plans will fall into quicksand.