Mar 07

Could You LIE If You Had To?

Lying is bad, we’ve been taught this since we were youngsters.  You don’t lie about where the cookies went, about who left the juice out or about where you were after school.  One should always tell the truth because it’s the right thing to do.  Lying as a child will often get one “the belt” or even worse, grounding during the summer when all the friends are outside having fun.

It’s one thing to avoid lying as a 6 year old but as an adult (and especially if T-SHTF) should this always be the case?  There are those out there who will climb up on the hill of morality and claim that any lie is wrong and to even consider such actions compromises one’s integrity.  In most cases this would be accurate but I would submit that there are certain circumstances when telling half truths, intentionally misleading people or downright lying would be completely necessary.

Allow me to go further into the rabbit hole and give a good example of lying which is advocated by other pepper-ish websites and forums.  Some suggest putting up signs which state “Food  / Shelter / Water” with an arrow pointing in the opposite direction of one’s homestead.  Of course there is no food and water that way but the intent is to mislead the golden hoard so they do not cross into your property looking for supplies.  Another example would be individuals who choose not to tell people about their guns or preps when asked, maybe they state they sold all of their guns or have no preps at all when in fact they have a rather robust stash off site.  Half truths?  Absolutely but all in the name of OPSEC.

What if post SHTF your town is overrun by a group of individuals who you do not identify with but in order to survive you have to “play the role” until you get out.  You wouldn’t compromise any personal beliefs by participating in their hooliganism’s but you might pretend to support their effort and welcome their presence.  While you were doing this you’d be gathering necessary intelligence on their strengths and weaknesses and planning an escape to your secondary location.  You’d essentially be lying but it would be justified, or should you go out in a hail of bullets with your family at your side knowing you did the right thing?

The number of scenarios out there which any of us could face are almost endless, many could require the use of half truths and misinformation in order to increase our chance of survival after T-SHTF.  Consider this, foreign agents and undercover cops do this all the time…they just know when to turn it on and when to turn it off.  One must be flexible and not constrained to a thought process of “there is only one way to get this done.”  Those who can adapt to scenarios with cunning and wit will often stand a much better chance than those who box themselves in with self imposed restrictions.  How many undercover cops would be successful if they responded YES the first time they were asked: “hey man, are you a cop?”

Try this the next time you are traveling.  Go to one of those middle of the road restaurants that serves the sub standard processed frozen foods, you know the ones I’m describing.   They usually have a bar in the center and are a gathering place for business types who want somewhere to walk to from the hotel.  Sit at the bar or a high top and strike up a conversation with someone, and when they ask about who you are and what you do just make something up.  My name is Bill and I’m from Charlotte, NC.  I’m a salesman who works for XYZ corp and I specialize in blah blah blah.  Here’s the catch, you’d better do your homework in case Joe blow sitting next to you is also from Charlotte or has family there.  This whole exercise might seem a bit ridiculous but if you can carry on a conversation with someone you will never see again and (without blinking) convince them that everything you are telling them is truth, you’ll have another arrow in your quiver if T-SHTF and the chips are down.



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    • Muleskinner on March 9, 2014 at 12:47 AM
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    There is not a thing wrong with disinformation it is the first tactic in avoiding an overwhelming force.

    • kentb on March 9, 2014 at 7:39 AM
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    kinda like when your wife/ gf asks —-“do these pants make my rear end look big”….we knw better then to say yes…same goes for when SHTF…u don’t put you or your friend/family in harms way….’nuff said

      • PJ on March 9, 2014 at 10:17 AM
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      Or when your wife asks “how much did that gun cost?” and the answer is significantly less than the actual amount.

  1. I never thought about misdirection signs.

      • PJ on March 9, 2014 at 10:16 AM
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      You going to make some today?

    • Marta on March 9, 2014 at 11:06 AM
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    While it is appropriate to lie in order to protect one’s cache, in my opinion it is unethical to practice lying to strangers about your identity in order to practice lying. This would be taking advantage of a stranger’s trust in order to practice a questionable behavior. I think it hurts the person who does this as well, because it is a selfish behavior which creates a false sense of power, and it helps to gradually wear away one’s moral code. This only serves to add to the problem of declining public morality. Better to practice lying in front a mirror.

      • PJ on March 9, 2014 at 12:05 PM
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      Thanks for the comment and this sort of thing is definitely a choice one makes (or doesn’t make) based on personal preference. I’m not sure if practicing is selfish behavior which creates a sense of power, but rather an exercise done out of necessity which can be turned on or off without much effort. While it is certainly ok for our opinions to differ I can tell you one thing will always remain true: a mirror will never replicate reality.

    • Snake Plisken on March 9, 2014 at 4:58 PM
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    I’d lie like a rug to protect my preps, friends and neighbors to protect them for as long as possible.

    What I haven’t seen on some of these very good posts is HOW to lie effectively.

    I’ve been an Executive recruiter for 25 years placing people who are machinists to VP levels has taught me a wealth of ” tells ” whether it’s face to face or on the telephone. BTW, I do NOT play poker! 🙂

    Face to face interviews are the best way to determine what a person’s personality is like and in very short order. When I ask some difficult questions ( very diplomatically ) I want to be looking for someone who crosses their arms or leans too far forward in responding to my question. Do they blink too often? Do they fidget? Are their eyes darting around the room? Do they have good eye contact ( w/o the Jeffrey Dahmer stare???) 🙂

    Keep in mind that 92% of human communication is non communicative. We instinctively observe that 92% and we don’t even recognize it!! This is also true of most creatures on the planet. So as one of the few mammals on the planet who have the capability communicate in a sophisticated fashion I would speculate that whales and dolphins might even have a better cognizance of auditory skills than us humans and can probably say a lot less verbally over long distance because they can’t see their body language over many sea miles.

    Okay, way off topic here, but here’s the bottom line. To be a successful liar you have to have a couple of issues held close to the vest:

    1) Don’t EVER tell the cops/FBI/HMS/Treasury/State police/city cops ANYTHING even if you are not guilty or even id you are. Please remember from Snake Pliskin ” If you don’t say anything the cops will never know anything.” Period.

    2) Look ’em straight in the eye whilst yarning your fabrication.

    3) Keep It Simple Stupid! The more fabrication and complex the lie the quicker the interregators or people you need to lie to will be able to dispute your lie. Remember, remember and remember ” If it doesn’t make sense then it isn’t true!!!!! ( Thank you Judge Judy!)

    4) Calm yourself and take some deep breaths through your nose and exhale. This is difficult for most law abiding citizens to address. You are in a completely bizzarro world where it is extremely intimidating. Calm down! Remember Brothers and Sisters we have rights protecting us!

    5) Always, always lawyer up no matter what. If it’s traffic stop well, it is what it is. You get hauled to a police facility, no matter for what, you lawyer up and shut your mouth.

    As for lying, I personally hate it. I have watched professional liars for years and have come to recognize that those who lie with delight and to advance themselves are not my kindred spirits and I have little time or energy to spend on them.

    One last interesting point: My Father told me years ago to ” Never lie.” I said ” Pop, I’m a sales guy and I have to make the sale.” He said ” you have to be forward and truthful with all your people.” ” But….you don’t have to tell them everythin’ either” ; )

      • PJ on March 9, 2014 at 7:38 PM
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      Love the Escape from New York references!

      You make some very valid points about body language and non verbal cues, people give themselves away all the time with what they do NOT say. I should point out that I contemplated writing this article for some time before doing so, it would be easy to interpret that lying (half truths, misdirection) should be embraced as a way of life with little regard for the consequences. By your response I can see that you understand where I was coming from, in that while lying is not a preferred method for getting things done it is still a valuable tool in the kit and one that could be called upon in a critical situation.

      At the end of the day each person has a certain comfort level with what they are willing to do in order to survive. If my loved ones or preps are at risk all bets are off.

        • Snake Plisken on March 11, 2014 at 8:34 PM
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        Spot on PJ. I NEVER would have thought that in million years that I’d be providing tips for people to lie! In my profession I have to make quick assessments of people. As a Christian I sometimes find it hard to judge people but have learned over the years to ask leading questions from three or four different angles and make sure that those investigative questions are all on the same page and make sense. If they don’t, then that person is lying to me. I do not take joy in catching somebody lying to me but my pragmatic side tells me that truth is golden.

        I’ve also been on the other side where I’ve been aggressively questioned by different LEO’s in the past. I’ve not always been the best law abiding citizen and have seen close up how LEO works and their modus operandi.
        Now, as a law abiding citizen the last many years, I take great pride in staying out of harms way. I hope some of my suggestions about lying were helpful to some of your readers!:)

        Snake Pliskin

          • PJ on March 11, 2014 at 10:30 PM
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          Thanks for your contributions…I hope you’ll stick around 🙂

    • Sam on March 10, 2014 at 5:43 PM
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    EVERYTHING the GOVERNMENT says is a lie. Just pretend you are up at the podium talking to the White House press corps. “If you LIKE your healthcare you can keep it”…”there is NO corruption in the IRS”…see, it’s EASY AS PIE.

    • drunk coyote on March 13, 2014 at 9:42 AM
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    As a prior alcoholic/addict , I used to live in a world of lies. I still have to catch myself when sometimes lying seems easier than the truth. I try hard to protect the opsec of my preps while at the same time trying to wake the sheeple up. It definitely is a fine line between safety and sin.
    I know I am forgiven of my sin by Christ. I guess that is where I draw the line on lying. Is the lie for self preservation or to help others, or is it just selfishness for personal gain.

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