A busload of politicians was driving down a country road when, all of a sudden, the bus ran off the road, and crashed into a tree in an old farmer's field. The old farmer, after seeing what had happened, went over to investigate. He then proceeded to dig a hole to bury the politicians. A few days later the local sheriff came out, saw the crashed bus, and asked the old farmer where all the politicians had gone. The old farmer said he had buried them. The sheriff asked the old farmer, "Were they all dead?"
The old farmer replied, "Well, some of them said they weren't, but you know how them politicians lie."
Are lying politicians trying to fool us, or are they just telling us the same lies we tell ourselves? It is the latter in most cases, and it is necessary for their political survival.
One side says that "guns don't kill people, people kill people." The other side says the gun control can save lives. On each side, the politicians play to their constituents. What do none of them say? None of them can say that maybe there would be lives saved if there was more gun control, but that we have a right to have guns, so we will accept the violence that comes with them.
People want to believe that they can have everything, don't they? Politicians who tell them otherwise are party-poopers who will be un-elected. If you believe in gun control, it is difficult for you to see that there might be some issue of rights that is important. If you believe in the right to bear arms, you want to also pretend that just as many people would die in drive-by punching. Lying politicians allow you to believe what you want, and even lie along with you. By the way, how can you tell when a politician is lying? When his lips are moving.
(Lying Politicians at 999ideas.com)
We, as a society, have hard choices to make. It would be nice if our politicians would tell us the truth, explain the tough issues, and give us some choices for how to solve the problems. But until there is a grassroots movement supporting discussion of difficult issues—until the supporting winds blow hard enough for politicians with their fingers in the wind to sense the need to do it—most politicians will continue to leave the tough issues in the Cone of Silence. Until we demonstrate that we can handle the truth, we can expect our politicians to keep lying to us.
There will always be some politicians who will lie more than others and some who come very close to telling us the truth. It's easy enough to identify these two types: The lying politicians will usually be saying things that feel comfortable and require no effort on our part; the truth-telling politicians will usually be saying things we'd rather not hear and prefer not to think about.
We have yet to hear any politicians say how they will cure the ills of their country. They never say what they will do to correct the wrongs we are faces with; they never admit that they put the country in the mess that it is in. Politics is all about greed, power and control. The politicians go into politics broke and they don’t care what they have to do to get elected. They lie, they steal, they cheat and they are dishonorable people who go into the political field because they can’t get rich any other way.
We know that abortion exists; we know that homosexuals are human beings. But they are used as scapegoats. These are just distractions to get people’s minds off what the real problems are. They are playing to the religious communities to distract them from what is really happening in the political world. Many of the politicians are alcoholics, pedophiles, adulterers, homosexuals, as are the leaders of many of the religious organizations, yet they condemn others. They persecute illegal immigrants yet they will employ them secretly and lie that they didn’t know they were illegal. They want cheap labor.
(Letter to the Editor: Lying politicians By Loletha M. Prudom, Tulsa World article at tulsaworld.com)
If you've ever wondered why the public tolerates politicians who lie to them it's likely that they “don’t have a high expectation that they'll tell the truth" in the first place, a noted ethicist says. As a result, explains Michael Josephson (radio commentator), "when they lie we are generally less offended in principle. That doesn't make their lying acceptable; it just explains why there is a high tolerance level for it."
"If it is perfectly acceptable for politicians to lie, and they can do so without fear of recrimination, then why should they tell the truth?" he asks.
(Sherwood Rossis at opednews.com)
All people lie some of the time. They use words to convey their lies while their body language usually gives them away. This is curious. Why did evolution prefer this self defeating strategy? The answer lies in the causes of the phenomenon.
We lie for three main reasons and these give rise to three categories of lies:
1. The Empathic Lie – is a lie told with the intention of sparing someone's feelings. It is a face saving lie – but someone else's face. It is designed to prevent a loss of social status, the onslaught of social sanctions, the process of judgment involved in both. It is a derivative of our ability to put ourselves in someone else's shoes – that is, to empathize. It is intended to spare OUR feelings, which are bound to turn more and more unpleasant the more we sympathize with the social-mental predicament of the person lied to. The reverse, brutal honesty, at all costs and in all circumstances – is a form of sadistic impulse. The lie achieves its goal only if the recipient cooperates, does not actively seek the truth out and acquiescently participates in the mini-drama unfolding in his honor.
2. The Egocentric Lie – is a lie intended to further the well being of the liar. This can be achieved in one of two ways. The lie can help the liar to achieve his goals (a Goal Seeking Lie) or to avoid embarrassment, humiliation, social sanctions, judgment, and criticism and, in general, unpleasant experiences related to social standing (a Face Saving Lie). The Goal Seeking Lie is useful only when considering the liar as an individual, independent unit. The Face saving type is instrumental only in social situations. We can use the terms: Individualistic Lie and Social Lie respectively.
3. The Narcissistic Lie – is separated from his brethren by its breadth and recursiveness. It is all-pervasive, ubiquitous, ever recurring, all encompassing, entangled and intertwined with all the elements of the liar's life and personality. Moreover, it is a lie of whose nature the liar is not aware and he is convinced of its truth. But the people surrounding the Narcissist liar notice the lie. The Narcissist-liar is rather like a hunchback without a mirror. He does not believe in the reality of his own hump. It seems that where the liar does not believe his own lies – he succeeds in convincing his victims rather effectively. When he does believe in his own inventions – he fails miserably at trapping his fellow men.
(Lies People Tell by Sam Vaknin, Ph.D. at globalpolitician.com)
Politicians usually are sincere when they talk obvious nonsense. It's the same like a child, who has just spilled the milk, saying with passion and sincerity: "It was not me!” His sincerity is genuine. He does not want to tell a "deliberate lie", he is just defending his position, trying to avoid unpleasant for him consequences. He is in no state to think about truthfulness of what he is saying; the words are just coming out of his mouth by themselves together with the tears from his eyes. And this precisely what happens to politicians.
Politicians do not think: "What lie or logical nonsense am I going to tell next?” The truth or falsehood or the logical validity of what they say are irrelevant to them. They are just instinctively defending themselves, just like the child that has spilt the milk. They are indeed sincere. But the sincerity of politicians does not turn their lies into truth, or their nonsense into logically valid reasoning. Nor does it make the consequences of acceptance of their lies and their nonsense less disastrous.
If the people do not want to suffer the consequences of sincere lies by politicians, they have to learn not to be carried away by their passions or sincerity, but to look dispassionately, skeptically and objectively at the facts and the evidence and the underlying assumptions.
Questioning the underlying assumptions is especially important. Any human idea or statement is based on some fundamental assumptions, which are often unquestioningly accepted as true. But, if, as is often the case, these assumptions are false, then no matter how logical all the arguments based on these assumption are, the conclusions based on these arguments will be false.
If to assume that the Earth is flat and not infinite, then it is correct to suppose that it has edges. People were searching for the Edges of the Earth and arguing about their shape for centuries - until they discovered that the Earth is round, and has no edges at all.
People need to learn to question the validity of the fundamental premises, and to understand what they are talking about before accepting nonsense from politicians. Politicians need to be told that they are paid for performing the dull, boring and necessary task of government, not for playing politics. And the task of government needs to be defined and strictly audited and controlled. This is the way to a peaceful, honest, secure and prosperous world. Not party politics.
(Truth, Honesty and Justice, The Alternative to Wars, Terrorism and Politics at shamsali.com)