Don't get me wrong. The sentence "time will tell" has been an innocent, and nearly tautologically true, sentence that many people have used at many moments. The sentence means that in the future, we will know more. It's true. To say the least, someone will know more about the events that lie in the "future" for us but they are the "present" for him, especially the events (and it's almost all events) that will be affected by Nature's quantum mechanical random generator.
On this website, you may probably find dozens of copies of this sentence written by me, too. However, in recent weeks, I saw that "time will tell" has turned into something much less innocent: into a religious slogan that is particularly favored by those who are wrong about all the important propositions they are making – and who are demonstrably wrong because they simply deny facts and proofs that already exist now.
When XY says "time will tell", he or she really says
I don't have any arguments (or at least any better arguments) so I simply declare myself to be the owner of the future. The future is obliged to support me. You are on the other side, the "wrong side of the history", so you are the loser.Well, it doesn't work like that. But a reason why the lies about everything are heard everywhere is that millions of people are so dumb or brainwashed that they don't understand that the sentence "time will tell" is just an extended interjection, not an argument.
Now, "time will tell" is undoubtedly used mainly by those who want to control the people's opinions about everything; and by those who are obsessed with looking into the future, usually distant-enough-to-be-irrelevant-for-us future, or extremely unrealistic scenarios for the future. For this reason, "time will tell" is linked to progressivists i.e. extreme leftists. I mean their intellectuals who have a sufficient brain capacity to combine three words, as in "time will tell", not those who can only tear down statues.
These people implicitly include a "promise" into the statement "time will tell", a promise that things will be moving in their way, and such a promise becomes a weapon, a weapon by which the independent rational thinking of people whose independence isn't strong can be shut down completely. Needless to say, this game of assertions including "time will tell" doesn't work and it isn't science.
In science or any rational activity that applies the mechanisms of science into other (often more mundane) contexts, it is not promises about the future but the evidence available at the present that counts and that shapes the scientists' opinions and expectations. The previous sentence is obviously true and every sane person – who has avoided the manipulation by insanity – agrees with that. Nevertheless, I would argue that hundreds of millions people in the West don't really realize it is the case. They have been manipulated and became basically braindead. They have been persuaded that being a member of a brainwashed herd that screams things like "time will tell" makes them right (or at least safe). It doesn't do either.
During communism, leftists had their "positive" spin on "time will tell": the communist bloc would get ahead of the imperialist world at the end of the ongoing 5-year plan or during the next one or sometime in the future. "Time will tell". Of course, these promises were important for communism which is an overt utopia, a plan about the future, also very distant future. Of course, they neglected the present – meaning the actual facts – such as the fact that the gap between the prosperous capitalism and the stagnating communism was getting deeper basically in every single year.
We may hear a "positive" type of "time will tell" as a defense of some papers that aren't very good etc., something that is just a random guess that cannot be supported by arguments because the defender of such a paper hasn't even tried to look at the relevant evidence (let alone a comparison with the alternative papers) deeply enough to produce any real evidence (and unsurprisingly, the evidence is non-existent in most such cases). But most of the "time will tell" copies are negative these days.
In particular, alarmist scenarios are all about "time will tell".
For more than 3 decades, thousands of arrogant pseudoscientists have been telling us that "time would tell" and the climate of Earth would get ruined to produce millions of casualties and similar events. None of these things has ever materialized. "Time has already told us" that these individuals were full of šit. Many of them are still around – and even when they're not, their contemporary heirs may be considered "direct successors". They still use the same "methodology" which is no good.
Similarly, the hysterical coronavirus demagogues have been saying "time would tell" in the sense of "there would be lots of dead people somewhere", meaning "a percent or two of dead in a region with millions of people". "Time has never told" us the same thing that they were spreading and it should affect our evaluation of these people. Their statements were lies and they were defending lies. In many cases, they were just shifting all the de facto impossible scenarios further into the future.
When we had discussions about this hypothetical game-changing impact e.g. in April 2020, and some people said "time will tell", the point is that the sensible people saw very clearly that "time had already told". At that moment, we already knew with near certainty that Covid-19 was extremely similar in impact to seasonal flu (less than 0.1% of the infected people die really "primarily due to the virus") and all the people claiming something completely different were people who were still ignorant about the very basic facts or liars – or complete lunatics. But we were still told "time will tell" by them. They were promising some miraculous moment in the past when the evidence that exists evaporates and the non-existent evidence for things that are/were already seen to be false "at the present" would emerge. They used "time will tell" as a justification of the idea that you should simply ignore all the existing facts.
But in April, it was the "present", not the "future", that mattered. April was the main month when trillions of dollars were wasted because of the harmful action of these dishonest "time will tell" liars, criminals, and political extremists. April was the ideal month for filling prisons with this nasty destructive scum. Instead, "time will tell" was used to prolong the hysteria by another month or two – and in some truly retarded nations, it even continues now, in July.
"Time will tell" is also used to attack seemingly apolitical theories. We may hear some version of "time will tell" from the anti-quantum-mechanics or anti-string-theory crackpots, too. But the best scientists don't say that quantum mechanics or string theory are almost certainly right (while all the existing criticisms are almost certainly wrong) because of "time will tell" i.e. promises about the future. They are correct because of the incomplete evidence that is available now – again, that is the only thing that shapes the opinions of a real scientist, or any rational human being, for that matter.
"Time will tell" combines the totally ideological progressivism with the culture of unrealistic promises served by the cheapest politicians and cheapest TV ads; and with the complete absence of interest about the present and about the real evidence. Because these aspects of "time will tell" are tied to each other so tightly, we might also conclude that the obsession with science fiction or extrapolations into distant enough future are co-responsible for the decay of the West, non-existent integrity of hundreds of millions of people, and the general decay of the Western (and not only conventionally Western!) society and its important activities and institutions such as science.
So I ask you, prepare some punishment for the people who will say "time will tell" illegitimately. It is an important part of the disease that plagues mankind today. Thank you very much. And if your views about science, the climate, the diseases, or anything else are shaped by promises because you feel entitled to be promised wonderful things, let me remind you – because the people who serve you this stuff won't tell you – that you are just a pile of dishonest trash, a corrupt pig eating from a feeding trough (or a consumer of the stupidest and most dishonest TV ads), not someone whose opinions about the topics matter.