In our opinion: Honesty isn't a no-brainer anymore

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  • jeclar2006 Oceanside, CA
    Jan. 14, 2019 1:51 p.m.

    DonO - Draper, UT
    ---
    @Thomas Thompson

    Yes, Trump lies with impunity but honesty is a personal choice that can't be foisted off on another person's behavior.
    ---

    While it is true that one can not 'force' another to be truthful, why elect such a person to the highest office in the land.

    Furthermore, even if the lying was not obvious at first, why not rein in Trump on his lies that now have been determined, rather than going along with them, as is the case of the current Republican Party stance, a few critics not withstanding.

  • RedShirt USS Enterprise, UT
    Jan. 14, 2019 1:30 p.m.

    Yea, the triumph of moral relativism.

    This problem will only get worse as more and more people embrace relativism rather than absolutes.

  • boyd Ricks sandy/salt lake, UT
    Jan. 14, 2019 12:43 p.m.

    I want to make clear that the questions in my previous quote are meant to be rhetorical. I assert that both me and the hypothetical religious leader need to repent if we say things that aren't true. It is clear to me that just as many people give preferred political leaders a 'break', many also give preferred religious leaders a break. It goes back to Jesus's parable about the mote and the beam. It's likely that many of us have the same faults we criticize in others

  • jeclar2006 Oceanside, CA
    Jan. 14, 2019 11:30 a.m.

    one old man - MSC, UT
    ---
    "And, yet, according to Utah's authorities, 90% or more already cheat on their taxes... in that they don't pay the appropriate sales tax (Use Tax) on goods they purchase over the internet. "

    Huh? Although I rarely buy anything online ( I prefer to touch it first ) I have never noticed any way to pay taxes when taxes aren't included on the site.
    ---

    I don't know what is on the Utah state tax filing forms, but for California there's a box for an amount of purchases via the Internet (or out of state), for which sales tax is due. The person filing the return is supposed to total up the amount, apply the tax percentage, and send a check for the amount if not covered by their withholding or required tax payments throughout the year.

    If one does in fact purchase goods for which sales tax is required, and 'pass that item by', they are 'cheating'.

    In California even people selling items via a garage sale may be required to pay sales tax... and many do not... in fact I've never heard of anyone paying sales tax on garage sales items...

  • David Anderson Lakewood, WA
    Jan. 14, 2019 8:26 a.m.

    Are you smarter than a fifth-grader?

    I gave a six-inch paper ruler to my mentee, a fifth-grader, and he with his ruler and me with mine measured the sidewalk that led up to his school.

    On our hands and knees, oblivious to those having to step over us, we each carefully flipped our six-inch paper rulers with each flip equaling one foot.

    When I reached 24 feet, and he had reached 24 feet, he was a whopping two feet behind. That’s because, unknown to him, I had altered his ruler, shortening it by three-eighths of an inch.

    A perceptive fifth-grader, he asked to see my ruler. Comparing the two he discovered the problem. His was shorter, but ‘only by a little bit.’

    Folding my paper ruler over to expose just three-eighths of an inch, I asked him, “How important is that little bit?”

    “Very important,” he responded.

    Lesson: “The sluggard,” and for that matter, the dishonest, “is deceived by the smallness of his surrenders. So, by inches and minutes, his opportunities slip away.”

  • county mom Austin, UT
    Jan. 14, 2019 7:36 a.m.

    Sadly, integrity is lost on many people. So few see the advantages of never telling a lie.
    In this nation if you're completely honest, you will pay for your honesty. You will pay taxes, because you have more income and less real deductions. You will loose a job to one less qualified, because they doctored their resume. You may even be shunned by friends and family for telling the truth.
    However, nothing is as important as your personal ability to look at yourself in the mirror and know you have been honest in all your dealings with your fellow humanity.
    This is how I have lived and taught my children.

  • Greybird7 ,
    Jan. 14, 2019 5:47 a.m.

    By nature, the human animal is a troublesome and conflicted creature. We are innately selfish, quick to judge, easily offended, given to short term thinking, and prone to violence.
    On the other hand, we can be generous, loving, compassionate, self-sacrificing, patient, and honest. Who we are, how we conduct ourselves, has much to do with how we are brought up. Is there a yardstick, a gold standard, by which we measure our lives? If there is, we are usually the better off for it. We will never be perfect, but we can walk the road which leads in that direction. Those who have no ethical, moral, or spiritual core, are adrift in a storm, and their chances of living a life of integrity and inner fulfillment, are much diminished. More and more, this is the fate of modern man. A life without principle, is a life which is empty.

  • pwlohse Dueren, 00
    Jan. 14, 2019 5:00 a.m.

    To quote Arthur Schopenhauer: "But life is short and truth works far and lives long: let us speak the truth".

  • NeifyT Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 13, 2019 9:07 p.m.

    @one old man,

    Have you never filled out your own state income tax return forms? It is written clear and plain as day that you are required to pay Use Tax (equal to the local sales tax) on any items bought out of state for use in state; specifically via phone or catalog order; and then when it was invented the language included any orders made over the internet.

    the problem with requiring sellers to collect and then remit sales tax on purchases over the internet; means that the sellers instead of filing quarterly tax returns to their local municipal; they now have to file all the tax forms for hundreds of thousands of municipal taxing agencies throughout the nation. That is a huge business killer for small businesses.

    It makes much more sense; to leave the codes as they are and require the individual filers to keep track of their out of state purchases and pay the tax with their income tax once a year; rather than making small business have to pay taxes to hundreds of thousands of city, county, and state taxing agencies throughout the entire nation.

  • toosmartforyou Kaysville, UT
    Jan. 13, 2019 8:23 p.m.

    How quick some are to use this article to pile on Donald Trump, citing his behavior the past two years. The article is based open the last 12 years so such comments are disengenious. If you want to look for an honest politician, good luck finding one, especially one that resides at 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue. I suppose Harry Truman and Gerald Ford came the closest. Certainly Bill Clinton, Lyndon Johnson and John Kennedy all got passes for their lack of keeping their marriage vows. But adultery is fashionable in political circles and is becoming common place in society in general. I know people who have logos on their vehicles from Christian universities who are living in adultery and are happy about it.

  • portlander Arlington, WA
    Jan. 13, 2019 7:29 p.m.

    DN reported, "While the country more or less remains on the positive side of truth-telling, cracks are clearly forming in a weakening foundation. That’s something to worry about....

    "It’s hard to imagine a future in which the value placed on honesty and integrity drops completely to zero. Wise people in every generation will recognize the attributes of moral character and appropriately hang a high price on them, ensuring those with the foresight to cultivate honesty and integrity will be always in demand. But society is only as strong as its individual members, and when personal integrity begins to fade, so does the strength of everything else."

    My comment is, anyone who thinks that we are not rapidly approaching the "end times" needs to seriously rethink their positions. The signs are all around us. Satan is marshaling his forces both seen and unseen. And it goes way beyond the virtue of honesty.

  • pragmatistferlife Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 13, 2019 4:36 p.m.

    "People can interpret facts differently, but that is not dishonesty. What is dishonest is when the media concocts a rebuttal to the President, and masquerades it as a 'fact check'."

    Interpret facts differently? Seriously?

    Yet the facts turn out to be facts and the media has proved again that the President has lied. Either he had a bigger inauguration crowd than Obama or he didn't. PS he didn't. Either they have confronted 4,000 terrorists at the southern boarder or they haven't...they haven't. See how easy that is.

  • one old man MSC, UT
    Jan. 13, 2019 3:35 p.m.

    "And, yet, according to Utah's authorities, 90% or more already cheat on their taxes... in that they don't pay the appropriate sales tax (Use Tax) on goods they purchase over the internet. "

    Huh? Although I rarely buy anything online ( I prefer to touch it first ) I have never noticed any way to pay taxes when taxes aren't included on the site.

    Didn't Utah recently change the law and now require that online sellers pay tax?

    I fully support that, and so do other people I know because not paying taxes for online purchases hurts our neighbors because it permits unfair competition. To say nothing of making it necessary for our local governments to raise other taxes.

  • Miguel1 Las Vegas, NV
    Jan. 13, 2019 1:39 p.m.

    I agree with the article. Honesty matters. It is documented that Trump has told on average about 20 lies a day for every day he has been in office. No other president has even come close. He lies about important things and once confronted keeps up the lie.

  • Midwest Mom Soldiers Grove, WI
    Jan. 13, 2019 1:01 p.m.

    "No nation can rise above the strength of its homes or the virtue of its people."

    ~ Gordon B. Hinckley

  • NeifyT Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 13, 2019 11:22 a.m.

    ... continued again.

    On the other hand; perhaps most people don't even realize when they are being "dishonest."

    For instance, from the previous article about this truth survey... "Is it OK to cheat on one's taxes? 93 percent said no in 2006; 84 percent said no in 2018."

    And, yet, according to Utah's authorities, 90% or more already cheat on their taxes... in that they don't pay the appropriate sales tax (Use Tax) on goods they purchase over the internet.

    And the vast majority of comments on articles regarding taxes on internet purchases have shown that is one reason people in Utah buy things online, is to get around paying the sales tax. Nearly everyone I have talked personally with about that; have said indicated to me that yes they do cheat on their taxes by not paying sales tax on internet purchases... they just don't see it as "cheating" even though it clearly is.

    Perhaps honesty is only seen as more of a "do as I say, not as a do" sort of expectation.

  • Utah West ,
    Jan. 13, 2019 11:05 a.m.

    People can interpret facts differently, but that is not dishonesty. What is dishonest is when the media concocts a rebuttal to the President, and masquerades it as a 'fact check'.

  • DonO Draper, UT
    Jan. 13, 2019 10:13 a.m.

    @Thomas Thompson

    Yes, Trump lies with impunity but honesty is a personal choice that can't be foisted off on another person's behavior.

  • RiDal Sandy, UT
    Jan. 13, 2019 10:08 a.m.

    Do these pants make me look fat?

  • one old man MSC, UT
    Jan. 13, 2019 10:08 a.m.

    The best line in the article is : "But society is only as strong as its individual members, and when personal integrity begins to fade, so does the strength of everything else."

    And when another commenter asks : "I believe honesty is important, but sometimes it is also difficult. If I made a statement in a public meeting that was later shown to be untrue what is my responsibility? Should I admit my fault? If a hypothetical religious leader made a statement in a public meeting that was later found to be contrary to evidence, should the religious leader feel obligated to apologize or explain?"

    The answer is a resounding "YES"

    Most of the people I've most respected in my 78 years are those who have done exactly that, no matter who they were and no matter what the issue happened to be.

  • 1aggie Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 13, 2019 8:22 a.m.

    “But society is only as strong as its individual members, and when personal integrity begins to fade, so does the strength of everything else.”

    Yes.

    We are in deep trouble...

  • boyd Ricks sandy/salt lake, UT
    Jan. 13, 2019 8:15 a.m.

    I believe honesty is important, but sometimes it is also difficult. If I made a statement in a public meeting that was later shown to be untrue what is my responsibility? Should I admit my fault? If a hypothetical religious leader made a statement in a public meeting that was later found to be contrary to evidence, should the religious leader feel obligated to apologize or explain?

  • pragmatistferlife Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 13, 2019 7:48 a.m.

    So if truth telling is eroded with each new generation how is it the oldest generation has put their trust in a man who is proven to lie over a dozen times a day to the public?

  • Thomas Thompson Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 13, 2019 7:37 a.m.

    The sad truth is that more and more of us place very little value on honesty in every situation. We do this because we've now been witness to more than two years of constant dissembling by the President of the United States. He has lowered the level of discourse in our nation by having the temerity to lie to us whenever it serves his agenda. So we're just following his (admittedly bad) example.

  • Blue Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 13, 2019 7:24 a.m.

    Institutional dishonesty breeds cynicism, disrespect and distrust. Physician, heal thyself.

  • unrepentant progressive Bozeman, MT
    Jan. 13, 2019 6:31 a.m.

    I think most of us agree that those 'little white lies' we often tell are a part of the social glue that holds us together. For example, an invitation to a dinner from a host you don't really like is refused by saying you are previously engaged. No one wants to intentionally hurt the prospective host's feelings.

    However, it is now very common for people to go beyond that, as outlined in the article. I can't tell you how many people I know fudge their taxes where they can (does all that outside cash income get reported?). Or petty theft in the form of 'stealing' time from your employer. Or telling a harried cashier that he/she gave you a dollar too much in change. Happens all the time to even the most 'saintly'.

    It would seem that this practice, that my grandfather/mother would never have done has been stretched to rather enormous scope. Politicians regularly exaggerate, and a certain one is wildly guilty of outright dishonesty. Financial greed is one root of the problem ('greed is good' said a movie role). Along with that raw power in government.

    Yet as disturbing as all the excessive dishonesty is, our tolerance for same is more so affecting. Why do we tolerate lies?