I recently learned about a term created by Michael Crichton, author of Jurassic Park, Jaws and Andromeda Strain. He identified something he labeled the Gell-Mann Amnesia. (Crichton named it after a friend, Nobel Prize-winning physicist Murray Gell-Mann who discovered and named the quark.)
“Briefly stated, the Gell-Mann Amnesia effect is as follows. You open the newspaper to an article on some subject you know well. In Murray’s case, physics. In mine, show business. You read the article and see the journalist has absolutely no understanding of either the facts or the issues. Often, the article is so wrong it actually presents the story backward—reversing cause and effect. I call these the “wet streets cause rain” stories. Paper’s full of them.”
I have seen amnesia in action with people I know. As an example, I know a married couple who are devout Catholics. They distrust the reporting of The Boston Globe because they believe the Globe harbors an anti-Catholic bias. Yet they believe everything else the Globe says! I guess the Globe is biased only on one subject. Right?
I think there is another version of Gell-Mann Amnesia. Here is an example. During the Trump administration the media harped endlessly on his alleged collusion with Russia. When the Mueller report showed that there were no such ties, the people I know who bought into the Russia-gate story conveniently forgot how they were misled for years then move on to the next story. Their faith in their trusted news sources remains intact.