Michael Blake discusses Presidential lies

Protestors holding up the letters LIAR in front of the White House.
Mobilus In Mobili, CC BY-SA

Michael Blake, professor of philosophy, examines the fact that every U.S. president has lied and if these lies can be morally defensible.

Media’s accounts of Trump’s lies would seem to indicate that most people are wholeheartedly opposed to lying – and, in particular, opposed to being lied to by presidents. And yet a recent survey of presidential deception found that all American presidents – from Washington to Trump – have told lies, knowingly, in their public statements.

As a political philosopher, with a focus on how people try to reason together through political disagreement, I argue that not all lies are the same. 

History shows examples of presidents who have lied for a larger public purpose – and have been forgiven.

Read the entire article on The Conversation: "From Washington to Trump, all presidents have told lies (but only some have told them for the right reasons)."

 

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