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Dr. Phil "A Husband's Double Life" (26 Nov. 2008) - Polygrapher Jack Trimarco Divines Unfaithful Husband Is a Pedophile (Read 57297 times)
Paste User Name in Quick Reply Box George W. Maschke
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Dr. Phil "A Husband's Double Life" (26 Nov. 2008) - Polygrapher Jack Trimarco Divines Unfaithful Husband Is a Pedophile
Nov 26th, 2008 at 6:54am
Mark & Quote Quote 

...


Entertainment is perhaps the best use to which the pseudoscience of polygraphy can be put, just so long as everyone understands that it's all for laughs (as on the Howard Stern show). Regrettably, Dr. Phil McGraw -- who with a Ph.D. in clinical psychology should know better -- has for years been falsely promoting polygraphy as a scientifically valid test that can provide meaningful answers to serious life questions -- though somehow it never seems to do so in the episodes wherein he turns to the polygraph for answers.

...

Admitted Sex Addict Michael


The 26 November 2008 installment of the Dr. Phil show, titled, "A Husband's Double Life," is a prime example of such misplaced and irresponsible reliance on the lie detector. The episode delves into lurid details of husband Michael's numerous infidelities to his wife, Elaine. Michael -- a self-described "sex addict" and father of two young girls --  admits that he has performed oral sex on an estimated 80 men at adult bookstores, that he has met other women for sex, that he has masturbated while driving on the freeway, and that he now faces legal consequences for his behavior. He has been in counseling since October 2007 and claims to have been sexually "sober" since September 2008.

...

Desperate Wife Elaine


Michael's wife, Elaine, suspects that there is more that her husband hasn't told her. She fears that he may take a sexual interest in children and that their two young daughters may be at risk. Elaine is desperate for answers. And so Dr. Phil suggests a lie detector test:

Quote:
Dr. Phil: You understand, at this point, there are two issues here that I'm looking at. One is (facing Michael), "Can you get help and get this under control?" And the other is (facing Elaine), "What do you need to do?" What do you need to do about your marriage? What do you need to do about your family? Whether he gets this under control or not, number one, you gotta know where the bottom is. You gotta know the truth, right? So you're dealing with a full set of data so you can make an informed decision, and your number one mission in this world, in life, is to protect those two girls. So you have to know the truth. You need to polygraph this man. You need to find out whether he's thought about these daughters, whether he's done anything with these daughters, whether he deals with those images, and what it is that you don't know that you need to know, so that you can make some informed decisions. Do you agree with that?

Elaine: Absolutely, I do.

Dr. Phil: (to Michael) Are you willing to do that?

Michael: Yes.

Dr. Phil: Are you willing to sit for a polygraph and answer the questions that she needs so she has a full set of data to make an informed decision?

Michael: Anything she needs. I'm tired of seeing her suffer through this.


...

Polygraph Operator Jack Trimarco


Retired FBI polygrapher Jack Trimarco is on hand to perform the polygraph services:

Quote:
Dr. Phil: I asked Jack Trimarco to come here today. He is a highly respected polygraph examiner, and he is willing to administer a polygraph to Michael. Jack, you understand, this one's important, right? I mean, that she needs some serious answers here about where he is.

Jack Trimarco: Very important.


...

Sex Addiction Faith Healer Michael Weiss


Quote:
Dr. Phil: There are people that specialize in this kind of intervention. Dr. Douglas Weiss is the executive director of the Heart to Heart Counseling Center, which is based in Colorado Springs. He's written numerous books and learnèd treatises on this -- is what I consider to be a cutting edge expert on this area. He's here today. He says that sex addicts often lie about these things to themselves and others. Dr. Weiss, what do you think about this situation.

Dr. Weiss: Well I think that Michael is a classic sex addict. And he's an opportunist. You know, when you talk about a polygraph, that's very insightful because an opportunist usually doesn't get better unless a polygraph is there regularly so they can grow, emotionally and morally. So this is a good start, Dr. Phil.


A scientifically invalid test for emotional and moral growth? Really? Dr. Weiss operates the Heart to Heart Counseling Center in Colorado Springs, Colorado, which markets sex addiction counseling services. A FAQ on Weiss' website offers an interesting explanation of why people become sexually addicted: "Spiritually, a person is filling up the God hole in them with their sexual addiction."

As an aside, regular readers of AntiPolygraph.org may recall that former Colorado Springs clergyman Ted Haggard went to erstwhile male prostitute Mike Jones to get his "God hole" filled. Jones failed a polygraph test regarding his sex and drug allegations, but was vindicated when Haggard resigned in disgrace as president of the National Association of Evangelicals. Perhaps Haggard had in fact been filling up the "gay hole" in him with religion (not to mention an extra large helping of hypocrisy)?

But let us return to our present polygraph saga. The show returns from a commercial break:

...

Jack Trimarco Polygraphs Michael


Quote:
Dr. Phil: Elaine says, if the results of the polygraph show that Michael is lying to her, that that's it. She's done. That's grounds for divorce. So when we come back, we're going to have some of those answers.

Well, we're continuing the story of Elaine and Michael. Now, they both say their marriage hangs by a thread because of the double life Michael has been leading. Now Michael has just taken a polygraph examination and has been asked very specific questions that Elaine says she needs answers to. You've just been gone for a brief commercial break. We've actually been gone for about three hours, because we had to conduct this polygraph in accordance with the appropriate protocols, and that takes a lot of time. She says she's ready to divorce Michael if he showed deception on any of the answers.

Now, I guess my question to you before we get to the results here is, "Where are you on all of this?" And I ask that because, as we went over this morning, you had glaring warning signs of sexual dysfunction on the part of your husband before you married him. You've had a series of, of problems along the way that you know about. And you've continued to stay hooked up despite the fact that there are children in this, in this situation. Um, are you at a crossroads?

Elaine: I am most definitely at a crossroads. When your children see you cry every single day, it makes it harder and harder to stay and fight. I justify it. I tell myself it's for the kids. It makes it a really really tough decision. Before we get these results, I would like to give him one last chance, before he's made to tell me the truth, if there is anything he needs to tell me, because just in his own writings, which he has allowed me to read some of his thoughts, with his permission, he wrote, in his own words, "I met a woman for sex several times at lunch." About twenty times I've asked him, he said it was "once."

Dr. Phil: (to Michael) Have you lied to her about that?

Michael: I, uh, don't believe so. Uh...

Dr. Phil: I guess the thing that I'm trying to do here is -- look, at this point, the only possible way to have any sense of -- I mean, you went into the pre-interviews with us before this show blaming her for your addiction.

Michael: Yeah.

Dr. Phil: But you know that one of the characteristics of a sexual addict is to blame others, to project on others, to deny, justify, rationalize, to do everything you can to hang on to your addiction and not take accountability for it. And you're doing that here. And she's asking you, she's pleading with you to tell her the truth. Jack Trimarco is going to tell us the results of this in a minute, but I'm just saying, if there's something you want to do now to tell her the truth, tell her now.

Michael: It's been hard to know what I've told her and what I haven't told her. Things have gotten so--

Elaine: That's so typical. That's his excuse every single time.

Michael: That's what I'm saying. I've--

Elaine: I can't be his memory 24/7 for him. When I am, I'm told that I don't remember it correctly or he didn't say that. This is what we go through at home when there's no cameras, when there's no doctors, when there's no therapists and there's no professionals.

Dr. Phil: (To Michael) You know, I want to grab you and shake you. I do. And I say that out of kindness. I want to grab you and shake you, 'cause I'm watching you self-destruct. You have your wife sitting -- this beautiful woman sitting here in front of you saying, "Tell me the truth!" You're saying, "Gee, I don't recollect." Come on. I mean, that's insulting to me. It's insulting to her, and it's insulting to you.

Michael: I feel like I've told her everything there is to tell, I mean--

Dr. Phil: Okay. All right. When we come back, we're gonna take a look at these polygraph results.


It's tragic that Elaine is ready to base her decision whether or not to divorce Michael on the results of a lie detector test. But it's an outrage that Dr. Phil and Dr. Weiss haven't disabused her of the notion that polygraph chart readings can be relied upon for such purposes. The show returns from another commercial break:

Quote:
Dr. Phil: Well today we're talking about what to do when a sexual addiction is destroying your marriage. This affects millions of people in our society today. It wrecks marriages, it wrecks relationships, and it destroys the lives of the addicts as well. Elaine and Michael have been married for seven years. They both admit that Michael's sexual addiction is tearing their marriage apart.

Jack Trimarco is here. Jack, you've conducted this polygraph. What is your confidence in the test results that you've generated here.

Jack Trimarco: Well my confidence is very high. Science tells us the polygraph is 93 percent accurate when conducted by someone who has like credentials.


Here, Trimarco repeats a falsehood that he has uttered numerous times. In fact, polygraphy has not been proven to reliably detect deception at better-than-chance levels under field conditions. The best available field studies suggest (255kb PDF) that "if a subject fails a polygraph, the probability that she is, in fact, being deceptive is little more than chance alone; that is, one could flip a coin and get virtually the same result for a positive test based on the published data." Indeed, the consensus view among scientists is that polygraphy has no scientific basis.

Quote:
Dr. Phil: All right. And, Michael, let me ask you. Did you feel that you were treated carefully and professionally and appropriately by Jack Trimarco in the administration of this examination.

Michael: Yes. Very much so.

Dr. Phil: All right. So, you didn't get ambushed, there weren't any tricks. You were explained everything before it was asked. There wasn't any shock effect--

Michael: No.

Dr. Phil: --or anything of that nature.

Michael: Yeah.


While Trimarco may have been polite and, in keeping with normal polygraph practice, reviewed all questions during the pretest phase, he would not have revealed to Michael that polygraphy actually depends on trickery -- and the naïveté and gullibility of the person being "tested." Nor would Trimarco have disclosed that the procedure is inherently biased against the truthful: the more candidly one answers the so-called "control" questions (answers to which are secretly expected to be less than honest), and as a consequence feels less anxiety when answering them, the more likely one is to wrongly fail! See Chapter 3 of The Lie Behind the Lie Detector (1 mb PDF) for a thorough exposition of polygraph procedure.

And now the moment the audience has been waiting for, the polygraph results!

...

First Question


Quote:
Dr. Phil: (To Elaine) So, they're probably pretty confident in these, and I know they're important, so you need to hear them. All right, let me ask the question: "Since October 2001, have you deliberately not told your wife about any sexual contact with another person?" That's a key date, right?

Michael: That was our marriage date.

Dr. Phil: Right. And you answered what to that question?

Michael: "No."

Dr. Phil: Okay. Do you really mean that?

Michael: Yeah.

Dr. Phil: The answer's "No."

Michael: Yeah. I feel like I've told her everything.

Dr. Phil: Jack, what was the result.

Jack Trimarco: Conclusively deceptive.


...

"Deceptive" Flashes on the Screen


If you're like me, you might be wondering, why on Earth did Jack Trimarco select such a poor relevant question? Is he taking his job seriously at all? Michael has already admitted to numerous sexual encounters that he had hidden from his wife. It seems both Michael and Elaine are confused, too:

Quote:
Dr. Phil: Okay. Um, he's saying that this is not true, that since your marriage you have deliberately concealed from your wife sexual contacts, and since October 2001 you have deliberately not told you [sic] -- not just that you forgot -- that you deliberately failed to tell her about sexual contact with another person.

Michael: The first part of the test, I was confused on at first. Because I said well I've, I've told things to her since we were married. So you know, I haven't withheld everything.

Dr. Phil: But I just asked you before we went over the results, I said, did you get a fair test, was it a judicious [sic] test--

Michael: Yes, I was--

Dr. Phil: --did you understand, was it clear, were you -- was it appropriate? You said, "Yes, yes, yes, yes, yes." Now, when it says you were deceptive, you say, "Well, I was confused."

Elaine: What? Does that include... Did that question specify anything that... Yes. Okay. He has withheld things since that day. But he's come clean on some things. Was that specifically about anything else he might be hiding?

Dr. Phil: We'll talk about that in a minute. Let's get to the other questions. We'll have it all on the table, and then we'll discuss it as much as you would like.


...

Question Two


Quote:
Dr. Phil: (Addressing Michael) "Have you ever touched any child for sexual purposes?"

Michael: No.

Dr. Phil: Your answer was?

Michael: No.

Dr. Phil: (Adressing Jack Trimarco) And the result was?

Jack Trimarco: Conclusively deceptive.


...

"Deceptive" Again Flashes Across the Screen


Quote:
Michael: Taah.


...

Elaine Sobs


Dr. Phil proceeds to the third and last question:

...

Third Question


Quote:
Dr. Phil: Have you ever used an image of a child as a sexual stimulant? (On the board, "stimulate" is written.)

Michael: No.

Dr. Phil: And the result was?

Jack Trimarco: Deceptive.


Note that this time the result is just "deceptive," not "conclusively deceptive." No explanation is offered, and the distinction is not mentioned on the show. Michael, maintaining his innocence, tries to explain the results:

Quote:
Michael: I know I was nervous during that entire time, and my back was twitching from the chair I was sitting in, but no, I have not done those, and that really bugs me that test says that (I'm) deceptive, because I have not ever touched a child or looked at a child in that way or done that. Ever. I don't know why they would have came up deceptive.

Dr. Phil: (To Elaine) What's your reaction to all this?

Elaine: (long pause) I... (long pause) I don't want to believe it. I don't want to believe that there was something wrong. To know that I have allowed this around my kids. He's gonna go home and he's gonna tell me that, there, it wasn't true. Where do, what do I do with that? What do I do with that?

Michael: It actually disgusts me to think of children in that way. I mean, I've...I've said that. So I don't know why that test --

Dr. Phil: Why did you say that you should have -- that if you get a divorce you should be supervised in your visitation with your children? Why did you agree to that?

Elaine: I think because he knows, and he has a progressive disease. He doesn't have a choice in that matter.

Michael: And I agreed to that. Because if we divorce and that is what she decides, I'm not gonna -- I'm not gonna fight her on it. I mean, I want what's best for my children in that case, and I'm not gonna -- I'm not gonna put them through a custody battle or any of that.


Dr. Phil then turns to Jack Trimarco to bolster the dependability of the polygraph results:

Quote:
Dr. Phil: Jack, you don't have a dog in this fight, do you?

Jack Trimarco: (shakes head "no")

Dr. Phil: I mean, you're totally objecti -- I mean do you have any preconceived notion about this one way or the other?

Jack Trimarco: No, Dr. Phil. Whenever I go into a polygraph I'm on the fence post. It doesn't matter what evidence there is. I believe the polygraph charts. That's what I'm trained to do, and that's what, uh, qualified professional polygraph examiners do.


However disinterested a polygraph operator may believe himself to be, it's unrealistic to suppose that a polygraph examiner's expectations will have no influence on test outcomes. Michael continues in vain to try to explain the results:

Quote:
Michael: I did mention that the chair was uncomfortable...

Jack Trimarco: Yeah, you did.

Michael: 'Cause I couldn't get relaxed.

Jack Trimarco: Right.


After a digression, Dr. Phil takes up the polygraph results with Michael. The confusion relating to the wording of the first question rises again:

Quote:
Dr. Phil: We have the polygraph result, which says deception, deception, deception. You say (facing Michael), "That's wrong."

Michael: Mmm hmm.

Dr. Phil: Okay, 'cause I want to make sure you're on the record here of denying that and saying that's wrong.

Michael: Mainly the last part about children.

Dr. Phil: I'm trying to get an answer that we can build some truth on here. I'm trying to help you here, man!

Michael: I know, and I want to get better.

Dr. Phil: Are you telling me that since your marriage, that you have not deliberately concealed from your wife any sexual contact with another person?

Michael: Well, see, I was thinking guilty conscience of that, because yes, at first I did. Before we found out I was a sex addict, I was withholding that information.

Dr. Phil: So why did you say no?

Michael: He said, the question was worded "deliberately." He said, "So, since you've divulged information to your wife, is there anything you have -- you deliberately withheld when you divulged.

Dr. Phil: (to Elaine) You have told us there were times that he said, "I'm stuck in traffic," and you later found out --

Elaine: Oh, I've talked to him and he told me he was --

Dr. Phil: that he was at a bookstore, that he's over visiting with family, and you later found out (facing Michael) that you were at a bookstore. That's just not credible!

Michael: Yeah. But I have came clean with her on that.


Michael asks Dr. Weiss whether his sex addiction could have influenced his polygraph results:

Quote:
Michael: Could we ask Dr. Weiss if it's very hard for a sex addict with scrambled, confused thoughts to pass a polygraph test? Has that been a known thing?

Dr. Weiss: That's a fair question, Michael. That, I mean, we've done hundreds of polygraphs with sex addicts and most sex addicts, they're either being deceptive or they do pass.


Note that while Dr. Weiss characterizes Michael's question as "fair," he doesn't provide a straight answer. It is not unusual that anyone -- sex addict or not, truthful or not -- would react strongly when asked "hot" questions of the kind that Trimarco put to Michael.

Because Michael has failed the polygraph, Elaine now fears she might commit an act of violence against Michael:

Quote:
Elaine: I fear for my children, please don't mistake that. But what I fear is him making it home to my children.

Dr. Phil: I understand that's a macho thing to say. The prudent thing that I'm asking you is, "Do you intend to take precautions with your children?" Have you heard things here today that suggest to you that you would not feel comfortable with him being around your children?

Elaine: Yes.

Michael: I'm sure she has, because I failed the polygraph. But I would -- I'll take that polygraph however many times you want me to take it.

Elaine: Is it worth having him take it a second time? Is it gonna be any different? And what if it comes back the second time the same? Then what? A third shot? I mean, Dr. Phil's not me. I give you twenty chances.

Michael: I'm the only one who knows me, and what I have and haven't done, and I have not done those things.


Elaine expresses a desire to speak with Jack Trimarco, and a post-taping session is held:

...

Post-Taping Conference


Quote:
Elaine: (to Michael) They're not giving me any reason to believe you.

Michael: Huh, the lie detector test. What more can I do about it?

Elaine: I mean you surfed the Web so much. Do you realize any of that could have been child pornography, and maybe your psyche remembers it?

Michael: Anytime I saw it, I moved directly to something else.

Elaine: Okay, did you tell him that, that you have seen it?

Michael: Is it possible for a sex addict whose mind is just constantly got [deletion] going on --

Elaine: You got to clear your mind for a lie detector test. Did he not tell you that?

Michael: No, he didn't tell me that.


...

Jack Trimarco Enters the Room


Quote:
Jack Trimarco: Hey guys.

Elaine: I just have a few questions. When a person takes a test, and they're sitting there, thinking in their head, all that thought that just went through their mind, what does that do?


...

Jack Dodges Elaine's Question


Quote:
Jack Trimarco: Well that's why we review the questions first, before they're asked on the test.


Trimarco's answer to Elaine is not really responsive. Although questions are reviewed first, as Trimarco correctly states, this pre-test review cannot stop thoughts, such as revulsion at the question being asked, or fear of the consequences of not being believed, from producing reactions that could lead a truthful person to wrongly fail.

Having failed to answer Elaine's question, Trimarco directs an accusatory statement to Michael:

...

Jack Accuses Michael


Quote:
Jack Trimarco: I reviewed those charts, and they were very clear that you've got some explaining to do.


...

Michael Is Angered by Jack's Accusation


Quote:
Michael: I'm really mad as hell right now. I've been falsely accused of doing something that I did not do. I have not touched a child.

Elaine: Can you give me something to believe in?

Michael: No.

Elaine: You know, you leave me with no choice.

Michael: Yeah, I know. (Gets up and exits the room.)

Elaine: He's still the father of my kids, and I still love him and I would still want him to get help. What am I supposed to do?


One thing Elaine should not do is to rely on polygraph results to make the crucial decisions she faces. As in numerous past Dr. Phil episodes where the lie detector has been trotted out, the polygraph has failed to provide any real answers. Nonetheless, the lie detector may well have achieved its intended effect: that of boosting viewership during Nielsen's all-important November sweeps, the last day of which was 26 November, the day this episode aired!
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« Last Edit: Nov 30th, 2008 at 10:07am by George W. Maschke »  

George W. Maschke
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Re: Dr. Phil "A Husband's Double Life" (26 Nov. 2008) - Polygrapher Jack Trimarco Divines Unfaithful Husband Is a Pedophile
Reply #1 - Nov 30th, 2008 at 1:13pm
Mark & Quote Quote 
Just more reason not to marry a religious nutbag
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Re: Dr. Phil "A Husband's Double Life" (26 Nov. 2008) - Polygrapher Jack Trimarco Divines Unfaithful Husband Is a Pedophile
Reply #2 - Nov 30th, 2008 at 1:40pm
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So...just why do you watch him .. I don't!!
Are you one of those preverts that watch Jerry Springer?
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Re: Dr. Phil "A Husband's Double Life" (26 Nov. 2008) - Polygrapher Jack Trimarco Divines Unfaithful Husband Is a Pedophile
Reply #3 - Nov 30th, 2008 at 6:35pm
Mark & Quote Quote 
Its psychology 101 that lie detector test give false results.  "Doctor" Phill is a quack, who profits from 1960-70's spiritual guru bull that he recycling and packages for dollars $$
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Paste User Name in Quick Reply Box George W. Maschke
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Re: Dr. Phil "A Husband's Double Life" (26 Nov. 2008) - Polygrapher Jack Trimarco Divines Unfaithful Husband Is a Pedophile
Reply #4 - Dec 1st, 2008 at 1:48am
Mark & Quote Quote 
Quote:
So...just why do you watch him .. I don't!!
Are you one of those preverts that watch Jerry Springer?


I am by no means a regular viewer of the Dr. Phil show. But to the extent that I am able, I do watch those episodes that involve polygraphy, as I am interested in the status of the lie detector myth in American popular culture. For commentary on past Dr. Phil polygraph episodes, see:
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George W. Maschke
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Re: Dr. Phil "A Husband's Double Life" (26 Nov. 2008) - Polygrapher Jack Trimarco Divines Unfaithful Husband Is a Pedophile
Reply #5 - Dec 2nd, 2008 at 11:06pm
Mark & Quote Quote 
Jack Trimarco looks like he's a total dick--as do just about all polygraphers.  It's a shame the way they harden themselves and create these fake personas in order to better practice their magic arts.  Eventually, after playing a son of a bitch for long enough, they irreversibly become one.  Such a waste of human potential.  Oh well, they get paid to do that to themselves.

Maybe he'll get hit by a bus soon.
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Is former APA President Skip Webb evil or just stupid?

Is former APA President Ed Gelb an idiot or does the polygraph just not work?

Did you know that polygrapher Sackett doesn't care about detecting deception to relevant questions?
 
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Re: Dr. Phil "A Husband's Double Life" (26 Nov. 2008) - Polygrapher Jack Trimarco Divines Unfaithful Husband Is a Pedophile
Reply #6 - Dec 2nd, 2008 at 11:09pm
Mark & Quote Quote 
Oh, speaking of the polygraph myth in American culture (something that also interests me), it looks like the remake of The Day the Earth Stood Still has a scene where they try to polygraph Klaatu (played by Keanu Reeves).

Even before I knew of that scene, I knew that this one wouldn't be anywhere near as good as the original.  Now it's definitely impossible for it to be so.  Rent the original TDTESS, pass on this one.
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Is former APA President Skip Webb evil or just stupid?

Is former APA President Ed Gelb an idiot or does the polygraph just not work?

Did you know that polygrapher Sackett doesn't care about detecting deception to relevant questions?
 
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Re: Dr. Phil "A Husband's Double Life" (26 Nov. 2008) - Polygrapher Jack Trimarco Divines Unfaithful Husband Is a Pedophile
Reply #7 - Dec 3rd, 2008 at 5:23am
Mark & Quote Quote 
Lethe wrote on Dec 2nd, 2008 at 11:06pm:
Jack Trimarco looks like he's a total dick--as do just about all polygraphers.  It's a shame the way they harden themselves and create these fake personas in order to better practice their magic arts.  Eventually, after playing a son of a bitch for long enough, they irreversibly become one.  Such a waste of human potential.  Oh well, they get paid to do that to themselves.


While Jack Trimarco has made counterfactual public statements regarding polygraphy, I think it is painting with too broad a brush to characterize him and nearly all polygraphers as "total dicks." For example, I've privately had some civil, constructive exchanges with a number of polygraph examiners. Although we may disagree on polygraph matters, I think that all-in-all, most polygraphers are decent, well-meaning people. As I've said before, I don't think anyone becomes a polygraph examiner out of a desire to falsely accuse the innocent (although such inevitably results from reliance on an invalid test for deception).

Quote:
Maybe he'll get hit by a bus soon.


I really don't think it's appropriate to wish physical harm on anyone, even in jest.
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Polygrapher Jack Trimarco
Reply #8 - Dec 3rd, 2008 at 6:43am
Mark & Quote Quote 
I also disagree that Trimarco should be painted in a broad negative light as a person.

With regard to his belief in the idiocy of control question test (CQT) polygraphy and what he has done to further public confidence in it, he absolutely deserves to be criticized.

Still, the man has dedicated his life to government service. He's worked on some top-tier cases, gone through doors, etc. For that, he deserves our respect.

As George and I have stated numerous times before, we believe that most people involved with polygraphy are well intentioned. Still, they are wrong in their fanatical belief that a fraudulent, pseudoscientific "test" has any value other than as a psychological rubber hose.
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Re: Dr. Phil "A Husband's Double Life" (26 Nov. 2008) - Polygrapher Jack Trimarco Divines Unfaithful Husband Is a Pedophile
Reply #9 - Dec 3rd, 2008 at 6:43am
Mark & Quote Quote 
Dr Maschke and Mr Scalabrini,

Thank you for your calm and reasoned replies.
Best Holiday wishes to All.  
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No good social purpose can be served by inventing ways of beating the lie detector or deceiving polygraphers.   David Thoreson Lykken
 
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Re: Dr. Phil "A Husband's Double Life" (26 Nov. 2008) - Polygrapher Jack Trimarco Divines Unfaithful Husband Is a Pedophile
Reply #10 - Dec 3rd, 2008 at 10:18pm
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Oh, I wasn't wishing harm to Mr. Trimarco.  I was merely pointing out that it is possible that he might be hit by a bus at some point in the future.  It is a logical possibility.  It'd be silly to say that it is impossible for any bus to ever hit Mr. Trimarco.  Unlikely, yes.  But possible. 

Furthermore, people who think it is impossible are probably more likely to be hit by a bus that someone who is aware of the possibility, all else being equal, because the person who realizes it is possible will be more likely to look both ways before crossing the street.

Also, I must disagree: simply becoming rich and powerful is not something to praise.  If you use your wealth and power to help people, then that is praise worthy.  But if you just use it to make yourself even more rich and more powerful, then no.
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Is former APA President Skip Webb evil or just stupid?

Is former APA President Ed Gelb an idiot or does the polygraph just not work?

Did you know that polygrapher Sackett doesn't care about detecting deception to relevant questions?
 
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Re: Dr. Phil "A Husband's Double Life" (26 Nov. 2008) - Polygrapher Jack Trimarco Divines Unfaithful Husband Is a Pedophile
Reply #11 - Dec 3rd, 2008 at 10:25pm
Mark & Quote Quote 
While Jack Trimarco has made counterfactual public statements Quote:
regarding polygraphy, I think it is painting with too broad a brush to characterize him and nearly all polygraphers as "total dicks." For example, I've privately had some civil, constructive exchanges with a number of polygraph examiners. Although we may disagree on polygraph matters, I think that all-in-all, most polygraphers are decent, well-meaning people. As I've said before, I don't think anyone becomes a polygraph examiner out of a desire to falsely accuse the innocent (although such inevitably results from reliance on an invalid test for deception).


They, like most of the public, DID probably believe in the validity of polygraphy when they BECAME a polygraph operator.  But I am pretty sure experienced operators actually know the machine does not measure deception, and that they DO IN FACT, have to lie to applicants about that, and often label innocent people liars as part of their FREAKING JOB DESCRIPTION!  

But for peole like that to then go on TV and make "counter factual" statements to feed public misconceptions regarding a process which he/she knows falsely smears people, because (what the heck) this is the way they make a living!  And for such people to come onto a public forum (like this BBS) and slander you (claiming you are aiding terrorists, child molesters, are have fled your homeland to escape the evil clutches of the FBI) because you disagree with them and they can't logically refute you.   Sounds like a "total dick" to me.  Well, maybe just "a dick" would suffice.

Now, are ALL polygraph operators like this?  Probably not.  They are probably not any worse than used car or snake oil salesmen.  Most probably DO realize they knowingly deceive applicants about the reliability of the polygraph to extract information from them.  That this is "part of the game".  That many they fail are innocent, and will have to live with assumed guilt for the rest of their lives.  But they consider this acceptable "collateral damage".  "Let God sort'em out".

OTOH, if they actually DO believe the machine detects deception, and that they only rarely fail innocent people.  Despite the scientific facts.  That just makes them deluded.

I agree, though, we should not stoop to their low level by name calling and resorting to slander, or talking about their mothers!

TC
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"There is no direct and unequivocal connection between lying and these physiological states of arousal...(referring to polygraph)."

Dr. Phil Zimbardo, Phd, Standford University
 
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Re: Dr. Phil "A Husband's Double Life" (26 Nov. 2008) - Polygrapher Jack Trimarco Divines Unfaithful Husband Is a Pedophile
Reply #12 - Dec 4th, 2008 at 5:54pm
Mark & Quote Quote 
T.M. Cullen wrote on Dec 3rd, 2008 at 10:25pm:
While Jack Trimarco has made counterfactual public statements Quote:
regarding polygraphy, I think it is painting with too broad a brush to characterize him and nearly all polygraphers as "total dicks." For example, I've privately had some civil, constructive exchanges with a number of polygraph examiners. Although we may disagree on polygraph matters, I think that all-in-all, most polygraphers are decent, well-meaning people. As I've said before, I don't think anyone becomes a polygraph examiner out of a desire to falsely accuse the innocent (although such inevitably results from reliance on an invalid test for deception).


They, like most of the public, DID probably believe in the validity of polygraphy when they BECAME a polygraph operator.  But I am pretty sure experienced operators actually know the machine does not measure deception, and that they DO IN FACT, have to lie to applicants about that, and often label innocent people liars as part of their FREAKING JOB DESCRIPTION!  

But for peole like that to then go on TV and make "counter factual" statements to feed public misconceptions regarding a process which he/she knows falsely smears people, because (what the heck) this is the way they make a living!  And for such people to come onto a public forum (like this BBS) and slander you (claiming you are aiding terrorists, child molesters, are have fled your homeland to escape the evil clutches of the FBI) because you disagree with them and they can't logically refute you.   Sounds like a "total dick" to me.  Well, maybe just "a dick" would suffice.

Now, are ALL polygraph operators like this?  Probably not.  They are probably not any worse than used car or snake oil salesmen.  Most probably DO realize they knowingly deceive applicants about the reliability of the polygraph to extract information from them.  That this is "part of the game".  That many they fail are innocent, and will have to live with assumed guilt for the rest of their lives.  But they consider this acceptable "collateral damage".  "Let God sort'em out".

OTOH, if they actually DO believe the machine detects deception, and that they only rarely fail innocent people.  Despite the scientific facts.  That just makes them deluded.

I agree, though, we should not stoop to their low level by name calling and resorting to slander, or talking about their mothers!

TC


I agree TC> Do I think that polygraph operators intentionally seek to fail innocent people?  I can honestly say I don't think they do

However, I do think that they realize that they are dealing with an unscientific method of detecting deception and that the real "test" is getting the person to confess, and thats where they fail me.
They need to get confessions so they MUST consider failing innocent people  "acceptable casualties" to do what hey do for a living.

I cannot believe that any polygraph operator doesn't  know that their machines don't work or they would not need to rely so much on the post test interrogation. This is why it's vital for them to keep the public believing that the accuracy rate in in the 90 percentile and why this site gets under their skin.

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Re: Dr. Phil "A Husband's Double Life" (26 Nov. 2008) - Polygrapher Jack Trimarco Divines Unfaithful Husband Is a Pedophile
Reply #13 - Dec 4th, 2008 at 7:53pm
Mark & Quote Quote 
Quote:
As George and I have stated numerous times before, we believe that most people involved with polygraphy are well intentioned. Still, they are wrong in their fanatical belief that a fraudulent, pseudoscientific "test" has any value other than as a psychological rubber hose.


Those who took part in the Salem witch trials were probably well intentioned.  What's that saying about the road to hell being paved with good intentions?

Don't laugh, there is A LOT of similarity between polygraph mania and 17th century witch trials.  Both involved false accusations and subsequent "shunning" of innocent people based on bogus beliefs. 

Good intentions can be a very dangerous thing.

TC
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"There is no direct and unequivocal connection between lying and these physiological states of arousal...(referring to polygraph)."

Dr. Phil Zimbardo, Phd, Standford University
 
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