Sunday, May 18, 2003

I just criticize the news - I don't make it!

Scientist confirm that politicians lie.

"LONDON (Reuters) - It's official -- after intensive research, scientists have concluded that politicians lie.
In a study described in the Observer newspaper, Glen Newey, a political scientist at the University of Strathclyde, concluded that lying is an important part of politics in the modern democracy.
"Politicians need to be more honest about lying," he told the newspaper
According to Newey, whose findings were published by the government-funded Economic and Social Research Council, voters expect to be lied to in certain circumstances, and sometimes even require it.
Newey said lying by politicians can occasionally be entirely justified, such as when national security is at risk, and the public even has a "right to be lied to" in cases where they do not expect to be told the whole truth, such as during a war.
But the main cause of lying is increased probing by the public into areas that the government would rather not discuss candidly. If voters only asked fewer questions, politicians would tell them fewer lies. "When journalists or parliamentary colleagues start to probe at that area which the government wants to keep secret, you are more likely to be pushed further and further toward the territory of lying," Newey said."

I'd make the case that while being seemingly impartial, government funded research is usually a waste, but this article & study beat me to it. All that's really left to say about this 'study' is the obligatory, "duh".

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