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The protective colorations of truth

When you read about judicial courts the world over parsing every case in order to discover, in crystal-clear precision, a mutually agreed-upon reality of any matter, more often than not, none of it on either side presents as a complete “truth.”

That’s why you have things like Manslaughter 3½ instead of just plain, “You killed somebody because you’re an idiot.”

People who try to tell the “truth” are often in conflict with their brain’s cellular data. These are systems as mysterious as the biotics in their lower bowel (not to be confused with the place where right-wing-radical “truth-telling” occurs).

The brain harbors innate biases and prior suppositions we aren’t aware of, which taint any sincere declaration of what we call “nothing but the truth, so help me God.” (As messy as truth-telling gets, I doubt even God wants to get involved.)

The following tack may explain my point without the onerous job of quoting ancient Eastern philosophers whom everybody thinks are profound.

Masterful wordplay in an effort to describe a reality has been a political tool for ages. It can be a weapon as recklessly lethal as an assassin’s lies, a biased spin passed off as truth to advance an ideology, or a self-serving rationalization to prevent self-incrimination. The right words can mix fact and fancy into a false reality to obfuscate and deny what is consciously known to be true by the falsifier. “You mean my entire fallacy is wrong,” Marshall McLuhan once mocked the conceit.

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