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So, Uncle Jay, Mill, and Socrates walk into a bar…

December 8, 2010

I love “Uncle Jay Explains the News.” While I don’t always agree with the man, I’m always amused by how “in your face” he is, so I try to remember to watch every week. This week, since we all probably need a break from studying for finals, I thought you might enjoy this too.

So, to be Captain Obvious, I think Mill would definitely  be okay with Uncle Jay. He starts conversations, he voices his opinions, and he “trash talks,” but in a non-harmful way.

But what would Mill think about WikiLeaks? I propose that he would be against them, because the things they put online have the potential to cause harm to many. They acknowledge this on their website,, which is admittedly the weirdest link I’ve ever seen:

As the media organisation has grown and developed, WikiLeaks been developing and improving a harm minimisation procedure. We do not censor our news, but from time to time we may remove or significantly delay the publication of some identifying details from original documents to protect life and limb of innocent people.

I’m all for a certain level of transparency, but where should the line be drawn? Do you think there is a reason the government isn’t completely transparent? Do you think it should be? Do you agree with my interpretation of what Mill would think about WikiLeaks?

Also, what do you think about Uncle Jay’s take on Congress? Are they focusing on the wrong things, or do you think they completely lack the ability to compromise, so they should work on other things instead? Or do you think something else?

It almost seems as though he is making a “Congress is out to get you” argument, but can we as citizens do anything about that, or did we, whether directly or indirectly, elect them, so they can do as they please, or are they accountable to us? Which political theorist do you agree with most in this context?

Now that I feel sufficiently like Socrates – asking questions without really giving any answers or explanations, I feel the need to toss in a little Socrates action:

You know, I think Socrates would be a cool friend to have. I imagine that he would teach me a lot about myself, but he would also probably confuse the hell out of me. I think I’d make him one of those friends you text when you’re bored but don’t actually hang out with, you know? He would probably get really annoying. I mean, I was annoyed with myself earlier in this post when I kept asking questions. Although, I bet he would give some really good essay topic ideas…

Just for laughs, what Historical figure would you bring back from the dead to date (this sounds awkward, I know, but work with me here)?

I think I’d bring back Leonardo Da Vinci. I’d get some really interesting knowledge, learn some incredible secrets, and maybe get a cool painting out of it.


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