Since the liar is free to fashion his “facts”
to fit the profit and pleasure,
or even the expectations,
of his audience,
the chances are
that he will be more persuasive
than the truthteller.
Indeed, he will usually have plausibility on his side; his exposition will sound more logical, as it were, since the element of unexpectedness – one of the outstanding characteristics of all events – has mercifully disappeared.
[Quoted from Hannah Arendt, “Truth and Politics” in Between Past and Future, 1968 edition, p251]
Where a community has embarked upon organized lying on principle … where everybody lies about everything of importance, the truthteller … in the unlikely event that he survives, has made a start toward changing the world.
Ah, Christians, let us strive to be “the truthteller”. That practice would seem to fit so well with a Teacher who said, “The truth shall set you free.”
By “truthtelling” we find, Jesus says, the freedom that our current government is offering us through aggressions abroad and big brother government at home – and lies. And we find, as Arendt says, a certain real power to begin changing the world.
Not bad, eh?
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