Yesterday, I met a friend of mine who's spent much of the last few years sitting at a desk in Central Asia being lied to (he has in his gift something a lot of people want: US$). He thinks there's a gap in the English language. We have a word for liar but not one for the person being lied to. So how about the counterpart of liar being 'liee'?
So, liee. But just as in the case of 'liar', I think the word describes someone who partakes in the activity more than just the once. The liee is probably someone who has a penchant to be lied to, even a need. The habitual liee has to hear happy talk and doesn't really care if it's true or not. I think we've all come across people like this.
Rather remarkably, our new word comes in useful immediately. And - guess what? - it's politics that provides an application. Nige is concerned that Osborne's truth telling about the misery to be unleashed by the Tories will land them in hot water: 'Nobody ever won an election by promising hard times, and surely they never will'.
Well, that will make the next election an interesting test. Are we a nation of liees? Do we have some sort of need to have sunshine permanently blown up our collective bottom? If the Tories don't win for this reason, there will be no point in railing against Beelzebub Brown and his host of bullshitting bluebottles. We'll have shown we deserve them. We'll be a nation of liees.