Why Do People Lie About Weird Things?

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Why Do People Lie About Weird Things?

Post by SkepticalSemite » Fri Jun 19, 2015 9:59 am

Let's start with one of the most ridiculous ones that we can be certain is a lie - SHC.

Even though it is biochemically impossible for enzymes to cause cells to get so hot they set flesh on fire, there are many people who lie about this.This woman, named Kay Fletcher went on a talk show and said one day the enzymes in a patch of skin on her back got out of control, and caused her back to feel hot and release smoke that filled the room.

I also saw a similar talk show but a man said his legs felt hot and started to smoke. Recently I saw the same thing yet again with a man named Frank Baker, who says the enzymes in his skin set his skin on fire suddenly and a mother in India says her baby has this condition also. She's still getting widespread attention for her made up story, but the baby is suffering due to her abusive nature.

Frank Baker of course, refused a polygraph test and ruined his lie by saying he got 2 purple hearts in Vietnam, when records show otherwise. He also lied that a Dr. West diagnosed him with 'partial spontaneous combustion' (there's no such thing, and no good doctor believes in this as it's required a basic level of understanding to do with biology - though SHC remains a popular myth, it is nothing more than a myth based on the wick effect and ignorance).

Frank Baker's story is a rip off of Jack Angel's story. Jack got scalded in an accident but said that the skin on his arms burst into flames, and that a doctor said the burns came from inside him. These were all lies of course, and told the truth in court when he sued the maker of his trailer for a faulty boiler release valve. However,Frank Baker's hoax inserts the theme of unwarranted self-importance, in which scientists are fixated on his condition and that he is being studied round the clock in several different hospitals to find a cure. He also starred in the reconstruction of the hoax event, in the documentary he got into.

What I don't get is why do these people seem to believe their lies, and why lie about something so ridiculous and stupid? Do these people really believe their lies or are they actually clever people who want to see how many people believe nonsense? As a college student studying psychology and biology I can't be the only one who sees through their lies and how ridiculously impossible this unoriginal **** is?

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Re: Why Do People Lie About Weird Things?

Post by Rob Lister » Fri Jun 19, 2015 10:36 am

I suppose it is a form of Munchausen Syndrome. I think folks that believe them just want to believe and convey fascinating things. I suppose the Indian lady is the classic example of Munchausen by proxy.

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Re: Why Do People Lie About Weird Things?

Post by ed » Fri Jun 19, 2015 12:11 pm

Same sort of deal with that white chick that claims she is black.

I think at first it is a cry for attention but, after a while, this quote become operative (I know that I've used it before but it is so apropos):

"truth was what he could make others believe"
The Thirteen Gun Salute (Vol. Book 13) (Aubrey/Maturin Novels)
By Patrick O'Brian

I think people can say things for giggles and then, if it gets attention and not too much pushback, it become truth. The fuller quote is better...
I think about how people describe some life event or other... like leaving a job or getting divorced. At first it might reflect truth "they hated me and if I didn't go they'd can me" to "yeah, it was mutual, I was ready" to "got this cherry job, they begged me to stay, offered me a cube and everything". A couple of years down the pike and "truth" has somehow changed.

It's not woo stuff, it reflects self protection as much as anything else.
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Re: Why Do People Lie About Weird Things?

Post by Doctor X » Fri Jun 19, 2015 9:16 pm


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