To Tell The Truth

To Tell The Truth

by / April 30, 1995
May 95

Television stations have been dreaming up some"technology" to test the veracity of those testifying in the O.J. Simpson case. One station used voice stress analysis. Another had a handwriting expert analyze a police report to see if the officer lied.

Actually, there was once a method for testing truth that had a certain logic to it. If somebody stole something, for example, and nobody admitted it, you lined everybody up, and put a live chicken under an overturned cooking pot. Everybody filed by and put their hand on the pot. If the chicken crowed, the person touching the pot at that moment was guilty.

After everyone finished, each person's hand was checked. The person with no soot on his or her hand was the guilty party. The logic? If you're guilty, you make sure you don't actually touch the pot.

Door With No Knob Leads to Secret Room

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- When Republican leader Jim Brulte moved into a new office in the California Capitol, he wondered why one door had no knob. While checking it out, he discovered a videoconferencing room connected to Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. Unknown to the Republicans, Democratic Assembly Speaker Willie Brown authorized the $250,000 facility. Republicans are calling it "the secret room," but Brown said it wasn't a secret, that he intended to show it to the press soon.

Technology was also at the heart of an earlier conflict between the parties. Claiming that Democrats were bugging a meeting, Republican Assemblyman Larry Bowler cut microphone wires in an Assembly conference room.