It is very popular to quote a person who made a significant contribution to some field. Deming is popularly used in the Agile domain for his quotes. I use them often, sometimes out of context.
A classic recent out of context quote is...
"Management by numerical goal is an attempt to manage without knowledge of what to do, and in fact is usually management by fear." -Deming
A counter quote is...
As Deming said: "A numerical goal without a method is nonsense." and then he said "Where there is fear you do not get honest figures."
So cherry picking quotes is very common, when a narrow view of a topic needs to be supported.
Here's a short story about measurement and numbers, from - Andrea Gabor, The Capitalist Philosophers (New York: Times Business, 2000), p. 143.
In the dense fog of a dark night in October, 1707, Great Britain lost nearly an entire fleet of ships. This was not from a battle at sea. Admiral Clowdisley Shovell simply miscalculated his position in the Atlantic and his flagship smashed into the rocks of the Scilly Isles, a tail of islands off the southwest coast of England. The rest of the fleet, following blindly behind, went aground as well, piling onto the rocks, one after another. Four warships and 2,000 lives were lost.
For such a proud nation of seafarers, this tragic loss wa embarrassing. To be fair to Admiral Shovell, it was not actually surprising. The concept of latitude and longitude had been around since the first century B.C. But in 1700 no one had devised an accurate way to measure longitude, meaning that nobody ever knew for sure how far east or west they had traveled. Seamen like Shovell estimated their progress by guessing their average speed or by dropping a log over the side of the boat and timing how long it took to float from bow to stern. Forced to rely on such crude measurements, the admiral can be forgiven his massive misjudgment. What caused the disaster was not the admiral’s ignorance, but his inability to measure something that he already knew to be critically important—in this case longitude.
A one small reminder for all those quoting anyone out of context, here's my contribution
Over 150 years ago the Irish mathematician and physicist Lord Kelvin reminded us: “When you can measure what you are speaking about, and express it in numbers, you know something about it; but when you cannot measure it, when you cannot express it in numbers, your knowledge is of a meager and unsatisfactory kind....”
So whenever you hear a quote, even my quotes, go test the context and domain of that quote to see of the poster has done his homework, followed the tread of the speaker or writer of the quotes and connected that quote in some meaningful way to a problem at head. If not, it's a nice platitude.