In the Anthem why do the scholars condemn the electric light even though they recognize its effectiveness?
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Nothing breeds innovation faster than innovation, and nothing leads to questions quite like innovation. If the scholars had allowed the electric light, a piece of technology from the Unmentionable Times, that would have undermined everything that had been established in the citizens' minds. To allow one such piece of technology would have invited questions, the last thing that a collectivist state wants. In addition to the type of questioning that new technology brings (how can I make it better, what other uses can I find for it), once it was discovered that the technology had existed previously, others would have inquired what else they could find useful from that time, and why, exactly, were those things so bad when they could be used for such good. The scholars were afraid to open the door because once opened, it can't be shut again.
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