We’re All Liars?

January 21st, 2008 by ChrisPa

Well, that’s what this article suggests. The gig is up — no one is honest! My favorite quote from the piece: “In the abstract, it’s very easy to say, ‘Oh, we value honesty, and you should never lie,’” says DePaulo. But “sometimes in our real lives, our valuing of honesty clashes with something else we also value, like wanting to be gracious or kind or compassionate.” Of course it’s easy to think that in ‘the real world’ honesty can clash with such virtues. But does it, really? Or is it that in the ‘real world’ we just like to make our lives easier by saying that it does? Is, in the famous example, telling a person “no, you don’t look fat in that dress” really demanded by compassion?

5 Responses to “We’re All Liars?”

  1. jonsquared Says:

    This explains Paula Abdul.

  2. Chris Says:

    Heh — good example! Oddly enough, though, Paula doesn’t often lie. She focuses her comments on what is positive in a person’s performance as opposed to what is negative. Does she ever tell anyone who can’t sing that they are good singers? I’m not sure, I don’t watch enough American Idol.

  3. jonsquared Says:

    Hmm, good point. Now, I don’t watch too much American Idol myself (<– huge lie!), but I’m pretty sure I’ve seen it where once or twice Paula almost soiled herself thinking of something positive to say except the most obvious. :)

  4. Million Says:

    Define “lie.”

    … wow, all the campaign coverage is wearing off on me.

  5. Chris Says:


    I suppose it’s this: Being asked about X, you believe that X is F, but you say that X is not F.

    Paula Abdul doesn’t do that. Being asked whether X is F, she believes that X is not F, but instead she states that X is G, which is true but unrelated to X’s F-hood.

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