Lying to advance a political agenda

in General Discussion edited January 2014
This article makes note of an increasing trend in lying to advance political causes and agendas.

I don't know if it is only related to violence against women and various hate crimes as this article makes mention of, but it seems like there really isn't any sort of consequence within support organizations or from the police with regard to the cost and problems associated with all these false allegations.

What do you think?



  • Reply 1 of 4
    giantgiant Posts: 6,041member
    do you mean like lying to start a war?
  • Reply 2 of 4
    brussellbrussell Posts: 9,812member
    I can think of a few examples:

    The Satanic Ritual Abuse hoax that swept the nation about 10 years ago, largely to support an agenda of the religious right. At one point, the FBI was investigating hundreds of cases, and the news was reporting that thousands of children had been missing and were probably being used in Satanic crimes by organization of interconnected cults across the country. After their investigations were over, the FBI concluded that not a single case was ever corroborated - not even a measly one.

    More generally, the Day Care Child Abuse cases, most of which were probably false (most notably, McMartin and others). This is a little more complicated, because I don't think the kids were lying, they were just manipulated by parents and prosecutors. Incidentally, Janet Reno in Florida was one of the pioneers of the aggressive prosecutorial and child-interviewing approaches that was the primary reason so many innocent people were accused. She caught the Clintons' eye before her approach became discredited.

    The repression-recovery nonsense that was all the rage in the 1990s. I think this was a collusion between psychologists and their patients, more than either one alone. But it tied into the "victim/survivor movement" which I guess was a sub-category of the feminists. Lots of innocent parents were falsely accused of abusing their children.

    One also has to wonder how many hate crimes are false - painted swastikas, Tawana Brawley, even church burnings.

    However, for all the hoaxes, I think in the case of rape and child abuse, there are still way way more real incidents that go un-reported (or unremembered) than there are false accusations.
  • Reply 3 of 4
    trumptmantrumptman Posts: 16,464member

    Originally posted by BRussell

    I can think of a few examples:

    I thank you for your detailed post BRussell, but I am just little unclear as to what agenda they advanced in each case. Could you tell us who you thought benefited from each round of lying?

    Frightening though it is, I can understand who giant claims benefitted from lies regarding Iraq. I don't know whether I would consider them false allegations, but I can understand where he is coming from regarding it.

  • Reply 4 of 4
    brussellbrussell Posts: 9,812member
    I guess if you want to put it in crass terms, the Satanic child abuse cases were about the fundamentalist religious agenda, the Day Care cases were about the "save the children" agenda, and the recovered memory cases were about a feminist agenda.

    I'm not sure I'd put it in terms that simple for those particular cases, but I wouldn't put them in such simple terms for false accusations of rape either - there's got to be something else going on with someone who makes a false accusation like that. Some type of Munchausen syndrome maybe?
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