Love of truth, on the other hand, is the root of all that is good.
Bill Whittle at PJTV very kindly produced a video entitled “Best. Sentence. Ever.” (it does not embed) by which he meant the title sentence of this post, and the motto I have plastered on the leftmost portion of the screen. Please watch—he even quotes Patton.When and if a theory describes reality without error it is no longer a theory but truth. If a theory does not describe reality perfectly, then it is not true. To love a theory over truth is the mark of madness. Or of Enlightenment. Or, nowadays often, of tenure.
Everybody knows the hoary old joke about the academic who says, “That works fine in reality, but does it work in theory?” Only it isn’t a joke. Many cannot think of truth except in the framework of theory. Just bring to mind the standard issue (media) climatologist and you’ll have the idea. And then recall literary “theorists”, the field of art “theory”, and so on ad infinitum.