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Adventures in Engineering
The wanderings of a modern ronin.

Ben Cantrick
  Date: 2007-09-05 12:58
  Subject:   Radical honesty: only for the brave.

via j_b:


This is only a "radical" concept if you haven't been practicing it your whole life. ;]

I do like the article, though. I think it makes two important points about radical honesty: A) it's difficult to do, you really have to force yourself do it; white lies and "politeness" are far easier. And B) everyone will call you an asshole whether you mean to be one or not. Radical honesty certainly isn't for the weak of will, or socially frightened.

Personally, I think the rewards are well worth it. There's way too much bullshit in the world. Anything we can do to kill some is tremendously liberating.
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Willow: DI Impactor
  User: willow_red
  Date: 2007-09-06 15:06 (UTC)
  Subject:   (no subject)
Keyword:DI Impactor
In principle, I agree that honesty is generally better than lying. Most of the time, the truth only hurts because you've been led to believe a lie for some period of time, so now in addition to whatever the initial problem was, you have the added embarrassment of someone (possibly everyone) else knowing something you didn't.

That said, this guy's notion of "radical honestly" sounds more selfish than anything else. There's a certain amount of give and take in every relationship. If someone's story is boring you, you can either tell them you're bored, or shut up and listen. If you say you're bored, how likely are they to want to listen to your story? Not very. If this is someone who isn't important to you, sure go ahead and tell them to piss off.* But if this person matters to you, you can make the sacrifice of a couple of minutes of your time, rather than making the other person feel like shit.

* However, in my experience, even seemingly insignificant people have a way of showing up again in significant places. Being an asshole and regaining two minutes of your time can cost a whole lot more down the line.

And maybe I'm perpetuating the culture of bullshit. Or maybe I don't think that ruining the days of everyone around me (which sooner or later is bound to bite me in the ass), is really worth the temporary feeling of "freedom."
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Ben Cantrick
  User: mackys
  Date: 2007-09-06 15:52 (UTC)
  Subject:   (no subject)
I don't think radical honesty requires you to be an asshole. I don't think it even necessarily always requires you to say what you're thinking. I think it's compatible with keeping your mouth shut, if that's what you want.
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May 2015