Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Body Language Analysis No. 4076: Roger Stone Speaks to the Press after House Intelligence Committee Testimony - Nonverbal and Emotional Intelligence (VIDEO, PHOTOS)

Yesterday, Roger Stone gave a closed-door testimony before the House Intelligence Committee. What follows is a partial nonverbal analysis of Mr. Stone during a brief press conference he gave afterward.

During a question regarding Paul Manafort's anticipated indictment, Roger Stone displays a classic "Jaw Confessional" (from 0:41 - 0:43). A jaw confessional is a lateral movement of the jaw made just prior to an embarrassing or regretful statement or answer.

Notice also, Mr. Stone simultaneously looks down and to his right. This is by far the most common quadrant of gaze looked toward during moments of sadness and/or regret.

Roger Stone's jaw confessional in this moment possibly signals his embarrassment and/or regret for Paul Manafort. If Mr. Stone and Mr. Manafort are friends - this would be understandable. However, if Mr. Stone and Mr. Manafort are not true friends, the other possibility is that this signal would indicate any embarrassment, sadness, or regret Stone feels is self-directed - and that Mr. Stone may be anticipating his own possible indictment.

Mr. Stone displays multiple microexpressions of contempt during this exchange. The example pictured above occurs when he says, "... Senate Intelligence Committee ..." (during 0:07).

As the journalist asks, "And just what happened in there? Ah, how much of the questions focused on, ah, your, your questions - through an intermediary with Mr. Assange - as well as, ah, this discussion over Twitter with, ah, Guccifer?"

During 1:36, as soon as the journalist says, "... this discussion over Twitter ...", although we can't see it directly - we can easily tell both of Mr. Stone's arms move from his sides to his front - and he clasps his hands or holds his hand-to-wrist (e.g., a fig leaf or similar variation) - while he also simultaneously tilts his head/neck backward, inhales deeply, and displays a partial eyelid closure. This indicates that Mr. Stone feels very vulnerable to the line of questioning regarding Mr. Assange and/or Guccifer.

Mr. Stone then displays an "Inward Lip Roll" (ILR) during 1:41 immediately after he says, "A fair amount. A substantial amount." An inward lip roll is a significant indicator that strong emotions are being suppressed.

Beginning at 2:19, a Journalist asks, "Is it still your view that - Russians had nothing to do with the hacks [inaudible] at the DNC or Mr. Podesta?"

Mr. Stone answers, "That is my belief - I subscribe to the view published in The Nation Magazine several weeks ago that the - the computer science seems to indicate, ah, an inside job..."

During 2:26 - 2:27, as he says "... I subscribe to the view ...", Mr. Stone covers his right eye, during an extended blink, and scratches his right eyebrow. This nonverbal cluster is strongly suggestive of deception.

Note also Mr. Stone's choice of words (one aspect of paralanguage). His answer was indirect. Rather than saying, "Yes", or "Yes, I do", or "Absolutely", or "One-hundred percent", or "That's what happened", or "That's the Truth" - or even "That's my belief". Instead, Mr. Stone used a non-contraction - "That is my belief." This along with his meandering and non-definitive response are also strongly suggestive of deception.

Another important tell is the rocking back-and-forth (lateral movement) Roger Stone displayed during this answer. This, in isolation, is a non-specific anxiety indicator.

Don't forget that multiple U.S. Intelligence organizations including the FBI, CIA, and NSA - all have independently concluded that Russia conducted the hacking of DNC - and it was Russia who also gave the stolen data to WikiLeaks.

Another important nonverbal signal was Mr. Stone's extremely frequent behavior of elevating up on his toes. Watch the video again - you will rarely see a better example of this dynamic. It betrays his significantly heightened adrenaline level during this short press conference. This begs the question, if Roger Stone was telling the truth after testifying before the House Intelligence Committee - why would his adrenaline be dramatically elevated?

This video is loaded with a myriad of nonverbal tells. What others did you see?

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See also:

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Body Language Analysis No. 4067: 2017 Emmys - Melissa McCarthy's Reaction to Sean Spicer Doing Melissa McCarthy Doing Sean Spicer 

Body Language Analysis No. 4046: Melania Trump, Hurricane Harvey, and "Destroying Empathy 101" 

Body Language Analysis No. 4001: Jodie Whittaker, Dr. Who, and Flirting from a TARDIS

Body Language Analysis No. 3996: Donald Trump Jr.'s and Natalia Veselnitskaya's meeting

Body Language Analysis No. 3977: Anthony Kennedy - One Signal You Never Want to See From a Judge During Your Testimony

Nonverbal Communication Analysis No. 3912: Keri Russell's Schadenfreude, Matthew Rhys' Fear, and a Hesitancy to Disclose