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  • Mr C
  • The Legend

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    • October 17, 2012, 03:00:40 pm
    • Seoul
Re: Do you assume people are honest or dishonest?
« Reply #20 on: April 05, 2021, 09:37:13 pm »

"UMass researcher finds most people lie in everyday conversation"
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2002-06/uoma-urf061002.php
And those are just lies in conversation. That's before we get to shit like makeup and fake watches and other crap that people do to make themselves look like someone they aren't.
"When they are trying to appear likeable and competent."

I can't imagine you are trying to appear either likeable or competent, just based on, well, um, evidence ... so why do YOU lie so much?

Also, absolutely certain this has nothing to do with the original conversation which is avoiding perjury in a police interview.


  • tylerthegloob
  • The Legend

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    • September 28, 2016, 10:46:24 am
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Re: Do you assume people are honest or dishonest?
« Reply #21 on: April 06, 2021, 09:50:43 am »
Actually, I would submit that it takes more effort to tell them the honest truth. If you are honest, you could risk becoming a social pariah at your workplace and possible disciplinary measures. Lie and nothing will happen. There is every incentive for you to lie and it is the path of least resistance. Telling the truth is the hard part.
what i mean by effort is you have to make up a lie (not social effort, but mental effort). the mental process of telling the truth is straightforward and doesn't involve applying any kind of filter. the mental process of lying requires calculation or filtering. you can truthfully answer the time question almost without even thinking about it (especially if you happen to be looking at a clock). you cannot dishonestly answer the "how does my hair look?" question as quickly, unless you're a very practiced liar (it needing practice suggests to me that its not the default). it's also why people who are intoxicated are less able to apply any kind of filter and default back to telling unfiltered (and potentially damaging) truths.

and again im not denying that people lie or that society encourages lying in various ways. but i don't think either of these things prove that humans lie by default. whether more situations arise where it is socially advantageous to lie is irrelevant to my point. anyway i think most of this conversation boils down to us having different ideas of what it means for people to lie by default. i'm not sure what exactly your idea is
more gg more skill


  • Kyndo
  • Moderator LVL 1

    • 2043

    • March 03, 2011, 09:45:24 am
    • Gyeongsangbuk-do
Re: Do you assume people are honest or dishonest?
« Reply #22 on: April 06, 2021, 10:10:09 am »
I agree that "default" needs defining.
I checked the "people are inherently dishonest" box, but I agree that this only applies in a social context. Barring some kind of mental illness, most people don't lie by default.

Also, I don't think that "dishonest" is necessarily bad. Society needs a certain amount of white-lies, half-truths, and outright whoppers in order to function smoothly at all.
Can you imagine, for example, an election where all the candidates spoken the truth and nothing but? None of them would ever get elected!  :huh:


  • tylerthegloob
  • The Legend

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    • September 28, 2016, 10:46:24 am
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Re: Do you assume people are honest or dishonest?
« Reply #23 on: April 06, 2021, 10:51:47 am »
right. and i also wouldn't call someone who often tells white lies to spare someone's feelings dishonest (assuming they're usually honest regarding important things). and i also wouldn't call someone who often tells the truth about unimportant things honest if they lie about important ones.

words got a bit jumbled up there... here's what i mean...
telling your girlfriend her new haircut looks great when you don't think so doesn't necessarily make you dishonest.
telling your girlfriend you didn't cheat on her when you did does make you dishonest (even if you told the truth about her not-so-flattering haircut)

i guess in my thinking i separate things that are simply not true from things that are maliciously deceitful. when i think about dishonest vs honest people i think about the latter (and i think it's the more interesting question).
more gg more skill


Re: Do you assume people are honest or dishonest?
« Reply #24 on: April 06, 2021, 11:10:19 am »
"When they are trying to appear likeable and competent."

I can't imagine you are trying to appear either likeable or competent, just based on, well, um, evidence ... so why do YOU lie so much?

Also, absolutely certain this has nothing to do with the original conversation which is avoiding perjury in a police interview.
Thank you for your contribution to the discussion.

Also, the issue in the police discussion was that perjury did not prove either the underlying conspiracy or that anything nefarious was going on. Anyone with an active career that would tax even those with the best of memories at recalling things will get caught in a perjury trap sooner or later. Especially if you don't think it's a hostile investigation thanks to police deception.
« Last Edit: April 06, 2021, 11:12:41 am by Mr.DeMartino »


  • Kyndo
  • Moderator LVL 1

    • 2043

    • March 03, 2011, 09:45:24 am
    • Gyeongsangbuk-do
Re: Do you assume people are honest or dishonest?
« Reply #25 on: April 06, 2021, 11:11:32 am »
I guess the word "dishonest" carries a lot of associations with morality.
Technically is ought not to, but the way people understand and use the term does?


  • Mr C
  • The Legend

    • 2529

    • October 17, 2012, 03:00:40 pm
    • Seoul
Re: Do you assume people are honest or dishonest?
« Reply #26 on: April 06, 2021, 11:36:02 am »
Thank you for your contribution to the discussion.
You're welcome.

Quote
Also, the issue in the police discussion was that perjury did not prove either the underlying conspiracy or that anything nefarious was going on. Anyone with an active career that would tax even those with the best of memories at recalling things will get caught in a perjury trap sooner or later. Especially if you don't think it's a hostile investigation thanks to police deception.

well, it was more along the lines of  "So what if they're lying about what happened in these meetings with Russians?  That doesn't prove anything shady, because everyone lies all the time, about everything."


Re: Do you assume people are honest or dishonest?
« Reply #27 on: April 06, 2021, 11:37:02 am »
what i mean by effort is you have to make up a lie (not social effort, but mental effort). the mental process of telling the truth is straightforward and doesn't involve applying any kind of filter.
I'm not sure this is true. I would submit that in certain situations, telling the lie might actually be easier because we're so conditioned to do it. I think some people would have serious fits if they were commanded to tell the truth about someone (which would involve something potentially hurtful) rather than a white lie. Now whether this makes such a person "dishonest" or more critically, "anti-disagreeable", is certainly something to consider, but there are situations where lies are actually easier IMO.

Quote
you cannot dishonestly answer the "how does my hair look?" question as quickly, unless you're a very practiced liar (it needing practice suggests to me that its not the default)
Well, a handshake requires practice at some point, as do many other socially conditioned behaviors, but at some point they do become reflexive. I think certain lies, both white and overt, at some point become reflexive.

Quote
i think most of this conversation boils down to us having different ideas of what it means for people to lie by default. i'm not sure what exactly your idea is
I wouldn't say that people are dishonest by default in all settings. However, I do think in certain ones, including medical and police, that the rate of dishonesty rises significantly, to essentially be the norm. And at that point it is hard to make certain value judgments about people. I mean you have serial killers who are brutally honest and openly confess their crimes and then you have ordinary people who help sick children who might lie to the cops because they don't trust them. This is especially true in communities where criminal enterprise or historical distrust are dominant. Not only that, the police are constantly lying themselves and are even encouraged to do so in order to try and close cases. 2/3rds of the criminal justice and legal apparatus have dishonesty as an active part of their job (cops and lawyers).

We have entire industries that are essentially deceptions of some sort or another- advertising, restaurants and hospitality, health and beauty, fashion, entertainment, social media, etc. Then you have things like finance and pharma that if not completely built around deceit, have deceit as such an active part that it is inseparable. Heck, pretty much any customer service interaction is just a mass of lies perhaps revolving around a few objective facts.

Basically, there's nothing to suggest that honesty, particularly in certain settings is the norm and should be regarded as such.

I guess the word "dishonest" carries a lot of associations with morality.
Technically is ought not to, but the way people understand and use the term does?
Well obviously it depends. I think the key thing though is to not immediately assume immorality because of deceit, particularly in certain situations. I also think a big element of honesty is understanding the dishonesty that living in a civil society involves, including with our ownselves. If one isn't owing up to that, then they aren't being honest. It's not that people who claim they're honest and honesty is a big thing aren't more honest on average, many are, it's that they're likely to just be blind to the subtle dishonesty of life or certain lies. Someone says "I'm always honest" Pfft. Right. If you were truly honest all the time, you'd be constantly getting into fist fights.


Re: Do you assume people are honest or dishonest?
« Reply #28 on: April 06, 2021, 11:38:09 am »
well, it was more along the lines of  "So what if they're lying about what happened in these meetings with Russians?  That doesn't prove anything shady, because everyone lies all the time, about everything."
Yes, particularly with the police, but also in their day to day lives. It's part of being in a civil society. If everyone truly was 100% honest, there would be constant conflict.


  • 745sticky
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1284

    • March 26, 2020, 01:52:57 pm
    • Korea
Re: Do you assume people are honest or dishonest?
« Reply #29 on: April 06, 2021, 02:44:17 pm »
I see what you're saying in a lot what you posted. It seems you're making more of a policy argument and what should be assumed as a matter of policy (e.g. not all people are innocent, but as a matter of policy we should have the presumption of innocence even when we "know" they're guilty).
Policy-wise, I definitely think that innocent unless proven guilty should be the case. I'm not trying to carry that over to social values though, the court of public opinion is what it is regardless. Moving away from actual policy, it is a policy that I choose to take in my regular life. Even setting aside the fairness aspect of it, its also just easier to always take people at face value. If they are lying they'll catch themselves in it regardless and I can condemn it then.


I would say this makes sense only in certain types of illness/injury- ones that don't involve societal judgment or embarrassing behavior (or prescription meds that have addictive properties). However as soon as they do, I think the probability of people being honest falls off a cliff. At some point you have to bow to math and acknowledge that the stream of people and their improbable claims are in fact, lies. Don't rule out the improbable, but don't default to it either.
That's true. I don't think that's the case for most people, though. I'd say that when it comes to addictive meds that's definitely an exception, but even when it comes to illnesses that involve societal judgment, I'd imagine that the majority of people would rather play it straight with the person that can cure them of that illness


As far as policing, this goes back to the discussion I had with Mr. C, it was concerning the Trump-Russia investigation and the various perjuries involved. My point was that them lying about certain things did not ipso facto prove a conspiracy and that lying to investigators is a normal occurrence. Something I still maintain.
While they might not have been guilty on the scale and to the extent that the investigators claimed, I don't doubt that a lot of them were probably guilty of the typical small-scale government cronyism that the investigation might've unveiled as a consequence


I think there has to be a fine line between adding on to negative feeling on the one hand and the fact that reality IS needed on the other. Ultimately, if the person is to recover, they need to be honest with themselves and face reality. If they can't then they will never solve it (or get a bunch of money for lipo I guess). That breakthrough (breakdown?) has to take place at some point. If it doesn't, well then there's no hope.
I'm not arguing that reality is needed, just questioning the delivery of it. A slap in the face and a few stern words are enough for a lot of people, but it wouldn't work on, say, a schizophrenic (using an extreme example for effect, not trying to equate it to examples from earlier posts or anything lol) 


It's pretty much game theory- indulging or accepting the lie WILL NOT improve their condition. Confronting might make it worse, but it's the only chance of making it better.
Indulging or accepting the lie doesn't improve the condition if that's all your doing. My point earlier is that a little bit of indulging gets your foot in the proverbial door. Confronting won't get you anywhere unless you worked your way into getting a bit of leverage first.

You also don't have to confront the entire thing at once. Going back to the example of fat people, start by sympathizing, mention that maybe little snacks add up, etc. It might seem irrelevant in the short-term when you could just let them know the extent of the issue but its important to get people to accept hard truths in bits and pieces first - that way when they have the full truth, they won't have the mental framework/stamina to go straight into closed-off denial mode.


I think that can vary significantly based on crime, neighborhood, and demographics. In a community where disdain for the cops or criminal enterprise dominates, people are far less likely to be honest. Also, the more time elapses, the more likely the person is going to inject themselves into the story and embellish things.
That's true, although in a lot of those cultures it isn't necessarily people being dishonest with cops and more just refusing to talk to them in the first place. Which is definitely uncooperative but I don't know if I'd call it dishonest.


  • VanIslander
  • Moderator LVL 1

    • 2341

    • June 02, 2011, 10:12:19 am
    • Seogwipo, Jeju Island
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Re: Do you assume people are honest or dishonest?
« Reply #30 on: April 07, 2021, 08:48:27 am »
Liars!