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September 26, 1931


JAMA. 1931;97(13):933-934. doi:10.1001/jama.1931.02730130037014

Like politics, history and economic theory, medical literature has its iconoclasts. They find their objects for denunciation in the fads and foibles of the day. They attack the newest therapeutic ventures, hurling shafts of caustic criticism at overemphasized and unwarranted innovations and crushing the shams of hastily constructed theories. The effort to maintain sanity in all fields of human interest and activity is commendable. So long as the critic and the reformer keep their proper objectives clearly in mind, their contributions are likely to be wholesome and progressive. Sometimes the limits of criticism are exceeded. There is a thrill leading to exuberance inherent in championing opposition. Criticism is often carried to the extreme of ridicule that may amuse, yet in the long run may defeat its honest purpose. It is easier to elicit a smile than to expound a homely truth in a sober fashion.

An antithesis of points of