Veni, vidi, vici
The matter of consensus is deceptive if one takes a closer look at it. A true consensus is one
which (after examination of the matter) consists in liberty of judgement converging on the same point. But the great majority of those who accept [...] have enslaved themselves to
it from prejudice and the authority of others; so that it is rather discipleship and party unity than a consensus. Even if it had been a true, widespread consensus, so mistaken is
it that a consensus should be taken for true and sound authority that it implies a strong presumption to the contrary.
So it is very appropriate to apply Phocion’s remark about morals to intellectual matters: men should immediately ask themselves seriously what errors or mistakes they have made if the crowd agrees and applauds. This sign therefore is among the most dangerous. And now we have completed our explanation that the signs of truth and soundness in the philosophies and sciences, as they are now, are poor, whether we gather them from their origins, from their products, from their progress, from their authors’ own admissions or from consensus.