Winston's heart sank. That was doublethink. He had a feeling of deadly helplessness. If he could have been certain that O'Brien was lying, it would not have seemed to matter. But it was perfectly possible that O'Brien had really forgotten the photograph. And if so, then already he would have forgotten his denial of remembering it, and forgotten the act of forgetting. How could one be sure that it was simple trickery? Perhaps that lunatic dislocation in the mind could really happen: that was the thought that defeated him.I know that it's blatant argumentum ad MCMLXXXIV to go here, but after eight years of going after the previous Maximum Leader by describing him as a cunning, buffoonish, Machiavellian, moronic, imperious puppet of a loose cannon who was out of control and carefully steered by various éminences grise, there are some who can now engage in effortless doublethink even faster than their eyes can focus.