The Truth Hurts
Actually, no it doesn't.
According to Psychology Today, the truth is better than a "white lie." Because, more often than not, when people have a negative opinion, they become frightened and don't say anything at all. This is not productive, especially in the work place. It prevents movement of any kind, and basically halts production.
I know that if I am doing something wrong, I would want someone to point out my fallacies so that I can make myself better. Self evaluation doesn't always work, especially when you don't know what to look for.
The problem with our education system today is that both teachers and students are not getting the evaluations they need - the evaluations they unconsciously crave. There is a fine line between discipline that makes people better, and discipline that injures one's self perception. As a country, we are about as close to breaching that line as we are to fulfilling the goals of NCLB. We need to tread that line to make ourselves better. I know that the only time I felt empowered is when people pushed me - and in recent history, we have been ingesting the grease of reward while reclining on the lazy boy of public education.