The important thing is to ascertain whether two contrary statements are equally exaggerated, without which the judgment that is to be made, while appearing to be impartial, will in fact be inequitable.

Frédéric Bastiat
Economic Sophisms Third Series

Bastiat is hereby denouncing judgments made hastily that consist to give credit evenly between two opposite assertions. It is indeed sometimes possible that justice resides in the middle of two positions but what he is showing us here is that this is not always the case. Upon a trial, if one of the parties is honest but the other is not, the advantage is given to dishonesty – a century ahead, we are touching here at game theory and the prisoner’s dilemma (with which I am not really familiar, I hope I am not mistaken on this).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *