Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Lies and Lying Liars

Why do we lie? We know that all the politicians lie, and we know why they lie. They are trying to be everything to everybody. But, why do the rest of us lie? And, we do, you know, much of the time, and some people lie all the time. And, they lie when the truth would be easier.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

I was in one of the shops that sold the Playtex brand in Branson a few years ago, looking for, ahem, an undergarment. I wanted a specific item, one I had been buying for years. I didn't find it, so I asked the saleswoman about it, and she said, "Oh, they don't make that one any more." Fortunately, I knew she was lying, because that particular item was in a Springfield Penney's ad in the local paper.

So, why did she lie? She was hoping that I would cave in and buy something she and I both knew I wouldn't like, because, if my preference was no longer available anywhere, then I'd have to change to another one, and buy it there. But, does that excuse the lie? In my humble opinion, no.

"Does this make me look fat?" The answer to this question is always, ALWAYS, "No." It doesn't matter if it is a lie or not. If it's a lie, it's just, well, a fib, or a little white lie. It spares someone's feelings, and besides, who needs all that drama at 7 a.m.?

"Did you check my brakes?" This kind of question requires the truth. Not, "I think Bubba did that." If you didn't check them, say so. I'll forgive you and you can drive the car back in and do it now. All I will have lost is some time, as opposed to, say, my life.

But, the worst lies, it seems to me, are told by the television news media.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Truman Capote stated years ago not in these exact words, that "all news would eventually be nothing more than gossip." And, what is news these days but gossip, insinuation, speculation and exaggeration? They make the most outrageous statements purported to be fact and then constantly have to backtrack and correct themselves. Meanwhile the damage is done.

I wish they would go back to reporting the news and backing it up with at least 2 sources verifying it.

And, of course, there are the charities.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Remember what happened after 9/11, when the United Way was supposed to disburse funds collected to the victims and their families? Hundreds of Millions of dollars, and where did all of it go? We'll never really know. We do know that some of it went to people who lied about being victims. We can probably assume that some of the money went into the pockets of the people administering the funds.

Another example of fraud on both sides of a catastrophe is Katrina. What a mess that was. And, it is ongoing.

So, who do you believe?

Personally, I believe anyone who tells me I don't look fat in what I'm wearing. That, my friends, is an honest man.


patsy said...

what i hate about the NEWS is you get a "repoter" and two expert and report ask no. 1 for his opinion, while he is talking no 2 expert start screaming over the other. since when can not adults talk and disagree with out shouting. also have you noticed how they will have a male reporter and a female reporter. they don't set behind desk any more. they set in chairs and the female has her nylon incased legs moving all the time. the truth is they all make me sick.

Anonymous said...

We have two local papers and between the two of them you get completely different slants on the stories. And neither one of them is right.

Anonymous said...

I"m with you! But FOX News really is the biggest liar of them all.

katy said...

its beyond me why the newspapers lie so much, i think they do it in the hope that they will sell more papers, but in the end they end up getting sued so it costs them money.
we are a nation that want and deserve the truth

Anonymous said...


We went to our 50th class reunion and everybody lied to everybody else about how great they looked.

But, some of our former classmates were so gray and wrinkled and bald, they didn't recognize me.

Betty said...

patsy: I hate the way they all try to talk over each other. Ends up in a screamfest.

gawilli: We have one paper that doesn't give us any news.

word girl: I just can't watch FOX.

her indoors: I think the people who report the news, on tv and in newspapers, are just gullible. They never check their "facts". And, yes, we all deserve the truth.

nancy: Those are "pity lies". I need alll of those I can get. The great thing about reunions is that after the 40th, we all look alike.

david santos said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...


Funny about this topic. I never thought much about it until you brought it up.

Today on MSNBC Margaret Carlson of Bloomberg News quoted Michael Kingsley.

" A gaffe is when you accidently tell the truth."

Sister--Three said...

I read the newspaper...it is better than tv news. try it.

Two girls at school lied to me...and I caught them in their tale. I told them they were what I would call a.....LIAR. They looked astounded like the tag did not fit them. NO I forgot they both said. I told them I had been around 6th graders for 35 years and I knew a lie when I heard one. I guess kids think...what is ok for older folks is ok for the young ones!

Anonymous said...

My favouite quote about lies is still ... "There are three types of lies - lies, damn lies, and statistics." - Attributed to Benjamin Disraeli, Alfred Marshall or Mark Twain.

Betty said...

nancy: Michael just may have something, there.

sister-three: I read three newspapers a day. They can report stories more in-depth than tv, but whether they are true or not, who knows any more.

john: I have heard that quote attributed to all three. Wonder who really said it?

CarmenSinCity said...

I sometimes lie just so that I can tell the person what they want to hear so that they'll leave me alone. It's for convenience really.

Just this morning a girl that I cannot stand called me early in the morning when I was on my way to work and wanted to know if I had a resentment against her. Well, I didn't have time or the energy to go into a diatribute about what a crazy bitch she is and how I wanted her to lose my number, so I just said "no, I don't have anything against you" and we got off the phone - pure convenience.

Joy Des Jardins said...

What a great post Betty. I don't know why people find it easier to lie than to tell the truty...convenience? We've become a nation of manipulators...and our government has set the standard. A lot of us refuse to go along with it. I just hope there are a lot more of US than THEM....it may be the only thing that will save us.

Newt said...

Great post. I go to the BBC for my news. I've found the most interesting things there that the US news is censoring.

Betty said...

carmensincity: Sometimes I lie because I don't want to hurt someone's feelings, or because I don't have any real reason not to like someone.

joy: I hope there are more non-liars than liars, too. But, I'm beginning to doubt it.

newt: I like to watch BBC news, too, just to get their "slant" on things.

steph said...

Ugh. Lying liars and the lies they lie about.

How about the Hurricane Katrina funds that went to victims who misspent the funds on Lincoln Navigators and brand-name clothing? Happened in my neighborhood with about five Katrina relocations who ended up here. What a bunch of losers they were. Grrrr....

Sister--Three said...

Betty, I think you hit it right when you said the newspaper was full of lies too.

Annie said...

And I believe anyone who says I look too young to be a grandmother.

But, about the news, while I was on vacation I didn't watch television, instead listened to radio in the car. When I got back home and turned on the television "news", I really noticed how much "news" was entertainment and how little was news. I wonder if I'll ever go back to watching CNN or if I'll stick with NPR from here on out.

Betty said...

qofd: I started to mention those "victims", but I had gone on and on for too long.

sister-three: They are indeed, but I don't think they're as bad as the television news, because they have more time to check out their sources, if they're so inclined.

annie: You don't READ old enough to be a grandmother. lol