William Saletan has a follow-up to his piece last week saying that both Republicans and Democrats lie. A lot. Not surprisingly, those of both left and right distorted that piece to make their own pre-conceived point.

My point wasn’t that it doesn’t matter when one side lies more than the other. It does matter. But what matters is the lies, not who lies more. If I say the sky is orange, and you say blood is yellow and grass is purple, the important thing isn’t that you’ve lied more than I have. The important thing is that the sky is blue, blood is red, and grass is green. So when I said “we’re all guilty,” my point wasn’t that your lies about blood and grass don’t matter. My point was that my lie about the sky matters, too.


James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. JohnC says:

    And not all lies are the same. Say, a lie about a BJ with an intern, vs…. Well, you get the point.

    There is a scale as to the seriousness of the lie, given its consequences.