Who's on first?

Sometimes I wonder what is people's obsession with defining who said what. In particular I refer to citations in articles. I'll admit that much of what I've learned, I've learned from others. Only a very small amount of my knowledge did I discover on my own through introspection, abstraction, conceptualizing, and a bit of deduction. I suspect that this is true for most people.

So should I find the intellectual links for all these ideas I spout off? What idea is worthy of citation and what ideas are not?

The rules for this process seem rather arbitrary.

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