Polygraphs/Lie Detectors in the US.

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bindeweede
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Polygraphs/Lie Detectors in the US.

Post by bindeweede » Mon Oct 26, 2015 6:54 pm

Published on Feb 11, 2014

Last September, Chad Dixon was sentenced to 8 months in a federal prison for teaching clients counter-measures for polygraph tests. Federal prosecutors charged Dixon with obstructing justice—they view his business as undermining an important tool used to check the credibility of government employees and prosecute criminals.

The information Dixon was selling wasn't new. Books on beating polygraphs have been around since the machines were invented. So why is the federal government cracking down now?

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Zep
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Re: Polygraphs/Lie Detectors in the US.

Post by Zep » Mon Oct 26, 2015 6:55 pm

Because of the lack of basic and readily obtainable scientific education in US politics.

ETA: And to put the well-endowed lady on video.

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Re: Polygraphs/Lie Detectors in the US.

Post by Tony Williams » Mon Oct 26, 2015 6:56 pm

Zep wrote: ETA: And to put the well-endowed lady on video.
Why do I keep thinking of pins and balloons?

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chaggle
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Re: Polygraphs/Lie Detectors in the US.

Post by chaggle » Mon Oct 26, 2015 6:56 pm

Must admit that when I first saw the post I thought someone had posted a BDSM video by mistake. :shock:
Don't blame me - I voted remain :con

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Tinkerbell
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Re: Polygraphs/Lie Detectors in the US.

Post by Tinkerbell » Mon Oct 26, 2015 6:57 pm

Tony Williams wrote:
Zep wrote: ETA: And to put the well-endowed lady on video.
Why do I keep thinking of pins and balloons? ;pu
Hello, yes, women have tits - and I had to look up what BDSM stands for, how did YOU know, Chaggle?!

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Re: Polygraphs/Lie Detectors in the US.

Post by Matt » Mon Oct 26, 2015 6:58 pm

My Business Development Services Manager told me of course. Although what that has to do with this conversation I really can't tell.

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Re: Polygraphs/Lie Detectors in the US.

Post by Tony Williams » Mon Oct 26, 2015 6:59 pm

Tinkerbell wrote: Hello, yes, women have tits
Yes, I had noticed - but in this instance my comment was prompted by the suspicion that these particular examples look somewhat unlikely to be natural.

However, I suspect that this could rapidly become a discussion that I wish I hadn't got involved in.... :c2

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chaggle
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Re: Polygraphs/Lie Detectors in the US.

Post by chaggle » Mon Oct 26, 2015 7:01 pm

Tinkerbell wrote: Hello, yes, women have tits - and I had to look up what BDSM stands for, how did YOU know, Chaggle?!
The usual suspects... :roll:
polomint38 wrote:
Fat lip, bruised ribs and a twisted ankle. Before Bob says anything the fat lip does improve my looks. :ck

Croydon 13013 wrote:
Happy new year! :cheer

(you should probably keep your BDSM discussions confined to the Seekrit board)
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Re: Polygraphs/Lie Detectors in the US.

Post by Croydon13013 » Mon Oct 26, 2015 7:01 pm

Now you've done it... you've mentioned the seekrit board again!
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Dubious Dick
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Re: Polygraphs/Lie Detectors in the US.

Post by Dubious Dick » Mon Oct 26, 2015 7:02 pm

BDSM and impressive bazookas aside, surely lie detectors have long been discredited anyway?

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Re: Polygraphs/Lie Detectors in the US.

Post by Croydon13013 » Mon Oct 26, 2015 7:03 pm

Dubious Dick wrote:BDSM and impressive bazookas aside, surely lie detectors have long been discredited anyway?
That was my understanding. The UK Govt considered using them on its own Civil Servants back in the early 1990s but abandoned the idea because trials showed that you got false positives and false negatives. Some people found it easy to trick the machines and training in how to trick them made it easy for many more people to do so. Actual spies were the least likely to fail a test.

Of course, I can imagine that the technology could improve to the point where you do get valid results, but I'm not aware that this has happened.
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Re: Polygraphs/Lie Detectors in the US.

Post by chaggle » Mon Oct 26, 2015 7:04 pm

Dubious Dick wrote:BDSM and impressive bazookas aside, surely lie detectors have long been discredited anyway?
I meant to say that but got distracted.

I didn't think anyone took them seriously except guests on Jeremy Kyle.
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Re: Polygraphs/Lie Detectors in the US.

Post by Zep » Mon Oct 26, 2015 7:05 pm

You don't "Pass" or "Fail" a polygraph test. It is just a measuring system. There are no klaxons or blinking red lights when you "tell a lie!"

Here's how they work: Various electrical and physical measurements in the subject's body are recorded in a continuous fashion (traditionally on paper like in the movies, but nowadays electronically). The operator marks on the running record when questions are asked of the subject. The "theory" is that people will unconsciously stress when providing lying answers, making a "different" recorded pattern different from some "baseline" responses they take at the start of each session. Thus any variation from baseline when questioned is a "lie".

There are a number of of obvious and humungous confounders that make polygraphs next to worthless:
1) The measurements and methods are notoriously unreliable as a measure of stress. Even an involuntary yawn or shifting in your seat can throw off a measurement.
2) There is no equipment consistency. Many polygraphs are no better measures of "stress" than L. Ron Hubbard's E-meters (...is this where he got the idea??)
3) Some pathological or trained subjects can lie without any change in stress whatever (false negatives).
4) Anyone who knows how the polygraph works and wants to fool it can stress somehow for the baselines, stress for the questions that may be true, or any combination (false positives). Stressing can be as easy as flexing foot or leg muscles, or pinching themselves surreptitiously. They can be VERY easily fooled.

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Re: Polygraphs/Lie Detectors in the US.

Post by Croydon13013 » Mon Oct 26, 2015 7:06 pm

Zep wrote:You don't "Pass" or "Fail" a polygraph test. It is just a measuring system.
Yes, but that is not how some governments (or the Jeremy Kyle show) see it. You are either an IS supporter or not, a Chinese spy or not. The US Govt is actually using these things as if they give absolute pass/fail solutions. Even the Conservatives in the UK realised it would not be helpful to use them but the US and some other states totally view it as something that gives positive and negative results.
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Re: Polygraphs/Lie Detectors in the US.

Post by Zep » Mon Oct 26, 2015 7:08 pm

Croydon13013 wrote:
Zep wrote:You don't "Pass" or "Fail" a polygraph test. It is just a measuring system.
Yes, but that is not how some governments (or the Jeremy Kyle show) see it. You are either an IS supporter or not, a Chinese spy or not.
If yer ain't fer me yer agin' me!
The US Govt is actually using these things as if they give absolute pass/fail solutions.
I suspect it is not universal policy. Some individual government entities or units may indeed be using them occasionally, but there is very likely other motives behind it all. I gather Hoover was a big advocate of them purely for the scare value on ignorant FBI "suspects".
Even the Conservatives in the UK realised it would not be helpful to use them but the US and some other states totally view it as something that gives positive and negative results.
As I said above, they may well know all about it as well as we do, but their "subjects" may not.

From the back of my fuzzy brain cells I vaguely recall reading of a US police unit who tied down their criminal suspect in a chair and put a colander on his head attached by car jumper leads to the back of a photocopier. They then pretended it was a lie-detector. When they interrogated him they would throw a scare by hitting the COPY button and another page would appear with the words "He's lying!" written on it. Apparently it worked in that they got the guy to confess to something that previously he wouldn't. Probably apocryphal, but it describes the ignorance that polygraphs rely on.

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