People around us lie all the time. If we watch carefully, we find that we lie all the time. Sometimes it is a “white” lie; something that is not the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. Sometimes it’s a big old fat and blatant lie caused by some moral, mental, spiritual, or other deficiency. All lies are caustic and damaging, but their negative result is proportional to the magnitude of the lie.

Consider the case when when my son asks me, “Dad how was your day?” I may respond, “it was just fine, thank you.” That may not be the entire truth. It’s very possible that I am dealing with things that he should not know about, or perhaps isn’t prepared to deal with. At his stage of development, when I say it was just fine, that could mislead him. I don’t mislead him knowingly, I am just giving him what he needs to and can hear. This lie could have some damage. He does not know that I am, perhaps, fragile and need respite; it informs and shapes his decision making process based on partial information. However, he also knows that his Dad reserves the right to say things are fine, when there may be issues the I am dealing with. Is it a lie? It’s an incomplete truth for sure.

Now consider the case when Hillary Clinton says the election was not stolen. Or that she had no involvement in the Steele dossier. This lie is so stupendous that it causes cognitive dissonance in every rational person that hears it. It makes our brains hurt.

Obviously there is a great difference in the lie and the result of the lie. Hillary’s lie lead to the downfall of the United States government - no valid election has results in an illegitimate government. My incomplete truth may cause my son to make under-informed decisions regarding how to interact with me.

How do we gauge our responsibility to correct or deal with these instances? The measurement is simply, if you can take responsibility for and deal with the results, then the decision about what to say is yours’ entirely. In my case, if my son incorrectly gauges the level of interaction we should have, I know, potentially, where the error in judgment came from. That’s easy to work with, and I take that responsibility. In Hillary’s case, the free world as we know it has ended. She cannot control that outcome and, even if she wanted to, cannot accept the responsibility that comes with it.

The principle: Hillary’s lie is not recoverable - it cannot be covered.