Comments on: Why we vote for liars Tue, 10 Feb 2015 19:54:39 +0000 hourly 1 By: MarkBee Thu, 08 Nov 2012 23:47:29 +0000 While the article states clearly that ‘politicians lie,’ it then goes to to detail Romney’s sins. Does anyone seriously believe that Obama was being truthful when he first ran for the Presidency and said that he was against gay marriage? He gave gay advocacy groups the smoke-filled-room wink to get elected, and then pretended to have a road to Damascus moment. Obama lied to get elected, just as JFK lied about the bogus missile gap to get elected. Reagan was famous for his scrambled stories, in which he tortured the facts, but I don’t recall him taking a stand on an issue that he didn’t believe in.

By: paintcan Sun, 14 Oct 2012 17:59:22 +0000 @Hman22 – You overestimate public appetite or liking for “the truth”. Few people like unflattering “truths”.

One is even expected to exaggerate one’s resume or make sure one never puts down anything that suggests one isn’t totally sold on the lies you might write there.

Risk or stretching the facts sells better than candor.

“No one likes a looser” and patriotic rhetoric and jingoism is the stuff of pulp media. Armies lie to themselves all the time and sometimes that is even the right thing to do.

The only time people don’t like the “lies” is when the lies aren’t working.

By: Hman22 Thu, 11 Oct 2012 15:47:08 +0000 This must stop! Presidential candidates should hold themselves to the highest standard. Purposely lying to win votes or to create a buzz is on the same lines as taking cheating in sports. Cheaters must be stopped and do not deserve to be the leader of one of the most powerful nations in the world. We should hold ourselves to higher standards and not vote for those who do not tell the truth.

By: Caspary Thu, 11 Oct 2012 15:15:22 +0000 I find those who claim to be the most religious tell the biggest / baddest lies. e.g. Tony Blair

By: LysanderTucker Thu, 11 Oct 2012 14:26:21 +0000 It’s just a lateral pass in football. Pass the ball every so many years to the other party, but the advance continues. I cannot believe how much faith people have in someone they’ve never met and never will. We are all slaves to them, a mere numerical population to feed their wealth and power. And they’ve got you all believing that they do it for concern over you because they feel your pain. They do it because it works.

By: paintcan Thu, 11 Oct 2012 00:55:52 +0000 @Matthewslyman – “TARP” – My mistake. But I do recognize that the aim of the rescue funds and the stimulus funds were different. Bush’s earlier (pre TARP) stimulus checks went to those already employed – before the real estate crash. Obama walked in to a different situation. The stimulus checks couldn’t hide the fact that the economy was still weakening. How does a very high priced nation survive in the face of a majority of much lower cost labor everywhere else without having to lower costs somewhere (everywhere) to adjust to that fact?

And the US does something else developing economies don’t do. We put products and services in place where other less developed economies don’t. An awful lot of labor is done in developing economies that is not monetized. If they live with old infrastructure even that isn’t valued at the same level as we do it with our abundance of fresh off the press mortgages. They may actually be living with a better quality of construction. It makes my eyes ache every time I see photos of the buildings that are being destroyed in the ME.

I live at about tenth of what my sister lives at and do so much myself that does not appear as money transactions. In other words, I use my own labor and that has no absolute value. I have no idea what it could be valued at actually. I cannot arbitrarily assign a dollar value on my labor unless what I do has been tested in the market place. I don’t assign a value to it at all. But I cannot arbitrarily assign a high value to it or it will face stiff competition on the labor market. I am in a conundrum myself. I am not a major consumer and therefor, I don’t do this economy any favors. And I don’t have the option to just spend until my credit card bursts into flames (or I burn it). With relatively small funds I can do a lot with it because I employ my own arms, legs and mind. That is not the rule of the American economy. People who have nine to five jobs actually are enslaved by them and are forced to find outside help to do many things they don’t have the time to do themselves. But that makes more employment and causes more money to change hands than what I do.

I’m not holding my breath that Romney will be able to pull a rabbit out of his hat. The Massachusetts economy has unique characteristics that the rest of the country does not share. It is the home to several very wealthy and prestigious universities and college and dozens of minor ones. It has the high tech sector along 128 and also a number of major insurance and financial firms in Boston. Lower income retirees tend to move out of state to cheaper states and take their health care costs with them. There will be no magic solution for the rest of the country without undermining the Massachusetts economy. Why would biotech move from 128 when they liked they educational and financial support of Metro Boston? Why would the major insurance and financial firms do it either?

I don’t object to Obama’s policies because he is doing what Roosevelt had to do in the only way the economy has left. The country has been forced to prop up all levels of society at the same time. Obama got in with traditionally Democratic union support and he can’t undercut them with make work programs at minimum wage. That’s why he has had to rely on entitlement programs and not so necessary infrastructure improvements. But neither can the Republicans without opening the door to fierce social unrest.

Those all seeing cell phones and internet sites will notice everything that is embarrassing about any major proposals to do anything. Instant feedback is a bitch, actually.

The last five years has been a lesion in political and economic theory that is a lot more than theory.

I don’t know that salesmen can afford to be objective product analysts. They have to have very patient bosses with deep pockets to be able to pull that of.

The country is stuck in a morass of it’s own devising and it all looked good at the time.

Not even warfare is much help because the world will not allow itself to be raped or plundered. They have educations now too. The Iraqi’s knew enough to hold onto the furniture.

BTW – I’m waiting for the old wind bag OOTS too.

I don’t believe in the power of positive thinking. I can get that out of a pipe. If none of the candidates can come up with proposals that can withstand Lucy’s withering critiques, Charlie Brown doesn’t stand a chance.

By: really12 Wed, 10 Oct 2012 20:24:44 +0000 This is not a credible article. The author is trying to sunstantiate his claims of lying with this example:

“For instance, in the first of the 2012 presidential debates, Mitt Romney claimed to be for economic regulation. “Regulation is essential. You can’t have a free market work if you don’t have regulation,” said Romney. Few Romney supporters flinched at their man’s endorsement of government intervention into business, because they knew he knew his lie was designed to make himself look palatable to easily duped Democrats and independents.”

Nothing in this statement proves or even suggests that Romney is attempting to “dupe” anyone. He is simply acknowledging that you must have some level of government regulation. During the debate, Romney went to criticize that Obama’s policy of over-regulation is hurting business.

Furthermore, I couldn’t help but notice that the author conveniently fails to cite an example of Obama when trying to substantiate his claim of rampant political lying. Curious.

Not buying it, Jack. Nice try.

By: tmc Wed, 10 Oct 2012 20:20:07 +0000 Great article Jack. I was hoping to see OOTS comment on this.
I despise politicians socially, but I do understand their plight. They absolutely have to be very good liars. It truly is a job requirement. Necessary evil and all that. Personally I do not like Mr. Boehner, but I do not envy him having to talk to AARP one day, and then the Tea Party the next day. Both grouped large and powerful, both threating to oust him.
I believe in government for the people, but I’m not so sure I believe in by the people anymore.

By: matthewslyman Wed, 10 Oct 2012 19:45:12 +0000 @paintcan:
“TARP” — I thought the Bush II administration came up with that name, and that the Obama administration merely changed some of the details (diverting some funds away from Republican constituencies and toward Democratic ones — another of my perennial gripes with our politicians/ imperfect political system.)

> “At Mathewslymen – There’s no such thing as “honest salesmanship”. I never listen to them.”
— I’m much like you, in that I totally ignore adverts (in fact, I hate adverts so much that I install software on my computer to block them all, I block all tracking cookies, and I don’t even have a television — because I want to be in control of my own learning & purchasing agenda.)
ON the question of “honest salesmanship”… I’ve been thinking about this question for a long time. I have come to the conclusion, after a little more thought, that:

honest salesmanship = presenting all of the relevant options while fairly emphasizing the parts of each option/message that will entice the hearer to do what will ultimately be for their own benefit (selling a win-win deal).

I think such a thing exists but I struggle to find this quality in its pure form in any politician I have ever known about, within living memory. So perhaps Jack Shafer is right…

By: paintcan Wed, 10 Oct 2012 16:12:19 +0000 “I’m an honest man only because my memory isn’t good enough to remember all of my lies”.

That’s been my motto for years too. But I usually leave out the lies because I’ve moved around so many times in my life until the last 20 years, I don’t give a hoot what the neighbors think. You have to really know your audience or neighborhood to really know how to lie effectively to it. Modern life encourages anonymity. Expectations about what proper behavior is have changed so much – has been out-right schizophrenic – since the 50’s that one had better figure who you are yourself or you will never know. Modern life doesn’t seem to value long memory either.

At Mathewslymen – There’s no such thing as “honest salesmanship”. I never listen to them. I can usually make up my own mind about what I want or need. You have to know how to recognize quality yourself. Advertising fortunes are wasted on consumers like me.

Politicians, especially Presidents, once they get into office, seem to forget the lies that got them there and have to concentrate on the demands at hand. Obama isn’t very different than Bush and even Bush would have had to continue the stimulus checks (it’s amazing how many people seem to have forgotten about them) and would have been faced with the same industries that required bailouts and even TARP (maybe with a different name). All classes in this society are voters and all have to be satisfied. And this country needs every income strata to spend money or the economy suffers. It’s an ecosystem.

This country loves it’s own self image(s) and lies to itself about itself all the time. That’s called having a “good attitude”. I find it a lot less exhausting and confusing doing what a guy I once met advised.” He said if you’re going to be depressed be depressed. If you’re going to be happy, be happy”. That isn’t fool proof but it’s cheaper than Meds or mood stabilizers. Oops, there goes another piece of the economy.