It seems odd that a long list of politicians and other high profile individuals have announced their belief of the allegation of sexual assault against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. Why does it seem odd? The answer to that lies in another question: what does it take for one to learn the truth of an allegation — ANY allegation?
That second question is precisely why the founders of the U.S. demanded a justice system that was built on the fundamental principle they never had the benefit of in their European homeland: “Innocent until proven guilty.” That principle has been the linchpin of American justice for almost 250 years. But its existence and the founders’ reasoning for demanding it as a building block for our country is lost on many today who number themselves among the “political elites” in American government. Here’s what a number of U.S. Senators had to say:
- New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D) Gillibrand offered words of support to Ford during a Tuesday interview with MSNBC’s Chris Hayes, telling him simply: “I believe Kavanaugh’s accuser.”
- California Senator Kamala Harris (D) “I believe her,” Harris told CBS in a Tuesday interview. It’s a serious matter. And she has the courage to come forward. She has nothing to gain. What does she have to gain?”
- California Senator Dianne Feinstein (D )”During every step of this process, I’ve found every single piece of information from Dr. Christine Blasey Ford eminently credible, sincere and believable.”
- Hawaii Senator Mazie Hirono (D) “Not only do these women need to be heard, but they also need to be believed,” Hirono said.
- Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren (D) “Christine Blasey Ford is brave, deserves to be heard, and treated with respect as she raises new questions about Brett Kavanaugh.”
- Senate Judiciary Committee member Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) said there needs to be an FBI investigation before the Senate Judiciary Committee’s hearing on the accusations against Supreme Court nominee Judge Brett Kavanaugh and declared, “I believe the survivor, Dr. Ford.”
- South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham (R) said he’d gladly listen to her story. “I don’t know when she took the polygraph,” Graham later said, referring to a lie detector test Ford’s lawyer says was administered to her by an FBI agent. “I don’t know who paid for it. I don’t know when she hired the lawyer. But if you didn’t want to go public why are you buying a polygraph and why are you hiring a lawyer?” he added. “All those things will come out.”
There are dozens of others in Congress who have come out in full support of Dr. Ford’s allegation, even before reading the letter in which the allegations were made or facing her in a Q&A before the Senate Judiciary Committee! How is it possible for anyone to determine guilt or innocence of a person when there is NO evidence, (either direct or circumstantial) there is NO testimony from the accuser or the accused, and there are no corroborating witnesses? Before we go into further details, it is noteworthy that not one Democrat in Congress has publicly stated disbelief in Ford’s story. And not one Democrat in Congress has publicly stated support for Kavanaugh’s nomination to SCOTUS before Ford’s allegations or since.
Do you think there may be possible politicization going on?
How Best to Determine if Someone is Telling the Truth
I thought it best to bring a small bit of objectivity and knowledge into this political debacle. There ARE experts among us who professionally conduct such investigations every day. Certainly hearing from one of those experts could shed some light on the probable upcoming testimony of Dr. Ford.
Tip No. 1: Inconsistencies
“When you want to know if someone is lying, look for inconsistencies in what they are saying,” says Newberry, who was a federal agent for 30 years and a police officer for five. When the woman he was questioning said she ran and hid after hearing gunshots — without looking — Newberry saw the inconsistency immediately. “There was something that just didn’t fit,” says Newberry. “She heard gunshots but she didn’t look? I knew that was inconsistent with how a person would respond to a situation like that.” So when she wasn’t paying attention, he banged on the table. She looked right at him. “When a person hears a noise, it’s a natural reaction to look toward it,” Newberry tells WebMD. “I knew she heard those gunshots, looked in the direction from which they came, saw the shooter, and then ran.”
Sure enough, he was right. “Her story was just illogical,” says Newberry. “And that’s what you should look for when you’re talking to someone who isn’t being truthful. Are there inconsistencies that just don’t fit?”
Tip No. 2: Ask the Unexpected
“About 4% of people are accomplished liars and they can do it well,” says Newberry. “But because there are no Pinocchio responses to a lie, you have to catch them in it.”
Sir Walter Scott put it best: “Oh what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive!” But how can you catch a person in his own web of lies?
“Watch them carefully,” says Newberry. “And then when they don’t expect it, ask them one question that they are not prepared to answer to trip them up.”
Tip No. 3: Gauge Against a Baseline
“One of the most important indicators of dishonesty is changes in behavior,” says Maureen O’Sullivan, Ph.D., a professor of psychology at the University of San Francisco. “You want to pay attention to someone who is generally anxious, but now looks calm. Or, someone who is generally calm but now looks anxious.” The trick, explains O’Sullivan, is to gauge their behavior against a baseline. Is a person’s behavior falling away from how they would normally act? If it is, that could mean that something is up.
Tip No. 4: Look for Insincere Emotions
“Most people can’t fake smile,” says O’Sullivan. “The timing will be wrong, it will be held too long, or it will be blended with other things. Maybe it will be a combination of an angry face with a smile; you can tell because their lips are smaller and less full than with a sincere smile.”
These fake emotions are a good indicator that something has gone afoul.
Tip No. 5: Pay Attention to Gut Reactions
“People say, ‘Oh, it was a gut reaction or women’s intuition,’ but what I think they are picking up on are the deviations of true emotions,” O’Sullivan tells WebMD. While an average person might not know what it is he’s seeing when he thinks someone isn’t being honest and attribute his suspicion to instinct, a scientist would be able to pinpoint it exactly — which leads us to tip no. 6.
Tip No. 6: Watch for Microexpressions
When Joe Schmo has a gut feeling, Paul Ekman, a renowned expert in lie detection, sees microexpressions. “A microexpression is a very brief expression, usually about a 25th of a second, that is always a concealed emotion,” says Ekman, Ph.D., professor emeritus of psychology at the University of California Medical School in San Francisco. So when a person is acting happy, but in actuality is really upset about something, for instance, his true emotion will be revealed in a subconscious flash of anger on his face. Whether the concealed emotion is fear, anger, happiness, or jealousy, that feeling will appear on the face in the blink of an eye. The trick is to see it.
“Almost everyone — 99% of those we’ve tested in about 10,000 people — won’t see them,” says Ekman. “But it can be taught.” In fact, in less than an hour, the average person can learn to see microexpressions.
Tip No. 7: Look for Contradictions
“The general rule is anything that a person does with their voice or their gesture that doesn’t fit the words they are saying can indicate a lie,” says Ekman. “For example, this is going to sound amazing, but it is true. Sometimes when people are lying and saying, ‘Yes, she’s the one that took the money,’ they will without knowing it make a slight head shake ‘no.’ That’s a gesture and it completely contradicts what they’re saying in words.”
These contradictions, explains Ekman, can be between the voice and the words, the gesture and the voice, the gesture and the words, or the face and the words. “It’s some aspect of demeanor that is contradicting another aspect,” Ekman tells WebMD.
Tip No. 8: A Sense of Unease
“When someone isn’t making eye contact and that’s against how they normally act, it can mean they’re not being honest,” says Jenn Berman, Ph.D., a psychologist in private practice. “They look away, they’re sweating, they look uneasy … anything that isn’t normal and indicates anxiety.”
Tip No. 9: Too Much Detail
“When you say to someone, ‘Oh, where were you?’ and they say, ‘I went to the store and I needed to get eggs and milk and sugar and I almost hit a dog so I had to go slow,’ and on and on, they’re giving you too much detail,” says Berman. Too much detail could mean they’ve put a lot of thought into how they’re going to get out of a situation and they’ve crafted a complicated lie as a solution.
Tip No. 10: Don’t Ignore the Truth
“It’s more important to recognize when someone is telling the truth than telling a lie because people can look like they’re lying but be telling truth,” says Newberry. While it sounds confusing, finding the truth buried under a lie can sometimes help find the answer to an important question: Why is a person lying?
These 10 truth tips, experts agree, all help detect deception. What they don’t do is tell you why a person is lying and what the lie means. “Microexpressions don’t tell you the reason,” says Ekman. “They just tell you what the concealed emotion is and that there is an emotion being concealed.” When you think someone is lying, you have to either know the person well enough to understand why he or she might lie, or be a people expert.
“You can see a microexpression, but you have to have more social-emotional intelligence on people to use it accurately,” says O’Sullivan. “You have to be a good judge of people to understand what it means.”
Even if one agrees with the steps given above to discern truth, one thing with Dr. Ford is missing: no one has had even a conversation with her, yet alone a face-to-face meeting. Hopefully, that will happen soon. But even if terms of her appearance before the Senate Judiciary Committee are agreed to and she does testify, it is doubtful any tangible evidence is even available to either confirm or deny her 35-year-old allegation of sexual assault against Brett Kavanaugh. What it will come down to will be conclusions drawn by those in the room about her testimony and that of the nominee — now known as “the accused.”
Here’s a summary question: how can any American feel any finding of the truth can result from her testimony? Those Senators listed above and dozens of other Democrats in the House and Senate have already made their commitments of belief of her story. It is impossible for anyone to determine that now. And even after Dr. Ford’s sworn testimony and that of Judge Kavanaugh, a decision will still be subjective for anyone and everyone.
Sadly, even if this concluded today, there will always be a cloud of suspicion hanging over the head of Brett Kavanaugh. He obviously was given NO presumption of innocence by any of those who blindly support his accuser.
Is Dr. Ford telling the truth? Only two people knows that answer: Dr. Ford and Brett Kavanaugh. And without the ability to “read” their brains, no other human will ever know for sure.
As the clock ticks and the calendar pages turn, it has become more and more obvious to me that our political process is structured totally by political partisanship — especially among those on the Left. “Innocent until proven guilty” is actually thrown out the window when it comes to sexual allegations against Republicans. Universally though, Democrats accused of sexual assault or domestic abuse are immediately considered by their peers to be innocent or immediately forgiven and restored.
Congressman Keith Ellison (D-MN) is the latest Democrat who has been accused of brutal abuse by his former girlfriend. Her accusation includes video, audio, and sworn testimony of others. Yet Ellison remains in Congress with no DNC investigation. And he is the Vice-Chair of the Democrat Party.
Former President Clinton was accused of all types of sexual assault and harassment as well as rape by multiple women. Democrats stood idly by in support of the Democrat President. He was impeached — but not for committing sex crimes. He famously committed perjury in sworn testimony in a civil trial. Remember this: “I did NOT have sexual relations with that woman.” “That” woman was White House intern Monica Lewinsky. And he HAD sexual relations with that woman. Clinton survived his impeachment trial in the Senate and was rewarded for his sexual crimes against these women by being elected to his second term as President.
It all comes down to this one thing: they don’t want the truth. They simply want Democrat power in government wrestled from the grasp of the Republicans — and they’ll do or say anything to get it. They do not care if they must lie, cheat, or steal to get it. Any price they must pay is all right. “The end justifies the means.” And they daily show that’s their goal and their methodology.
Will any Democrat change their opinion of Brett Kavanaugh serving on the Supreme Court? That is doubtful.
It’s hard for Americans to reconcile any elected representative in Congress would even consider making such a critical decision based on anything but Truth.
How can they predetermine their vote on the confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh, many making their announcement to vote “no” on his confirmation before he appeared before Congress or met one-on-one with Senators?
The answer to that question came from Jack Nicholson in the movie “A Few Good Men.” (Click to see/hear his answer)
They cannot handle the Truth, so they refuse to even consider it.