About this Episode

The word liar is used to label people and to signal to others that someone is not to be trusted and this word is thrown around at the drop of a hat. It is hard for someone to get back into good graces when they have been deemed to be a liar and it is even harder if they have been deemed to be a pathological liar. However, what even is a pathological liar and what causes someone to partake in this antisocial behavior?

Generally, pathological lying is the symptom of some other condition which causes a person's perceptions or reality to be so warped that they do not have the same understanding of the world around them that a cognitively normal person would have. This causes them to speak about memories and current events in ways that are demonstrably false as if it is the truth. It is very rare for a person to just be lying for the fun of it, however, those are the people who are most often portrayed by popular culture. In fact, many times these characters are portrayed as the anti-hero protagonist of the story.

We also draw parallels to the now widely circulated new story involving Jussie Smollett. This case has drawn a lot of criticism as a cut and dry story involving a famous pathological liar.

It causes us to visit our human nature to hold others to levels of morality that we would never hold ourselves to and discuss some examples of studies that show our mind and lie detection methods are possibly trusted more than they should be as accurate representations of the facts or how easy they are to decipher from superficial data.

As always, all of this is interspersed with stories of our own run-ins with liars and some of our favorite examples of liars.


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