We sat in absolute silence then. I was stunned. I was, and I knew it, an ordinary person who long after he was grown retained the childhood assumption that the people who largely control our lives are somehow better informed than, and have judgment superior to, the rest of us; that they are more intelligent. Not until Vietnam did I finally realize that some of the most important decisions of all time can be made by men knowing really no more than, and who are not more intelligent than, most of the rest of us. That it was even possible that my own opinions and judgment could be as good as and maybe better than a politician’s who made a decision of profound consequence. Some of that childhood awe and acceptance of authority remained, and while I was sitting before Esterhazy’s desk–the room silent, everyone watching me, waiting–it seemed presumptuous that ordinary Simon Morely should question the judgment of this board. And of the men in Washington who agreed with it. Yet I knew I had to. And was going to.
–Jack Finney, Time and Again