"Experience has invalidated other firm beliefs of those days. We thought that the sedimentary section in Kansas was profoundly thick. We would probably have guessed that the vertical distance to the crystalline floor under central Kansas was nearly equal to the horizontal distance to the crystalline core of the Rocky Mountains. When in 1915, the driller of a "wild-cat" well reported granite at a depth of 1100 feet, or so, right in the middle of the state, we were not only skeptical; we were indignant. We denied that the well had granite; and when the driller under our own supervision, bailed out of the well fragments of beautiful pink granite, we charged that he had planted the granite in there himself!"-- Wallace E. Pratt, Vice President of Standard Oil, Oil In The Earth, 1942, on being confronted with empirical data which annihilates biogenic origin.We see the same type of denial, extreme irrationality, and human misjudgement from so-called "scientists" who claim that the abiomarkers in oil, namely molecular diamondoids, have a biogenic origin, even though diamonds can only be formed in the mantle. It's similar to Mothers who are told their soldier sons have died in Iraq but still believe they are alive.
This is what Munger calls bias from consistency and commitment tendency. See: 24 Standard Causes of Human Misjudgement.
"It doesn't just catch ordinary mortals. It catches the Deans of Physics. According to Max Planck the really innovative important new physics was never really accepted by the old guard. Instead a new guard came along that was less brainwashed by it's previous conclusions. And if Max Planck's crowd had this consistency and commitment tendency that kept their old conclusions in tact in spite of disconfirming evidence you can imagine what the crowd that you and I are part of behaves like.""Natural petroleum has no connection with biological matter." -- Kenney, Krayushkin, Plotnikova