Friends and Fans — I have retired from my work as a public intellectual, so Philosophy in Action is on indefinite hiatus. Please check out the voluminous archive of free podcasts, as well as the premium audio content still available for sale. My two books — Responsibility & Luck: A Defense of Praise and Blame and Explore Atlas Shrugged — are available for purchase too. Best wishes! — Diana Brickell (Hsieh)


  • Q&A: Poking Fun at Values: 6 Jan 2013, Question 3
  • Question: When does humor work against my values? Sometimes, I wonder whether my jokes undermine what I value. Is it wrong to poke fun at my friends or myself? Is it wrong to joke about principles that I hold dear? How do I draw the line?

    Tags: Benevolence, Communication, Ethics, Friendship, Fun, Humor, Introspection, Relationships, Values

  • Q&A: Celebrating Birthdays: 15 May 2011, Question 2
  • Question: How should a person celebrate his birthday, if at all? And if so, why? Would a rational egoist throw a party and invite people that he doesn't value much, like estranged family members?

    Tags: Egoism, Family, Fun, Holidays, Relationships, Self-Interest

  • Q&A: Acting Silly: 13 Mar 2011, Question 6
  • Question: Is it rational to do silly things? A friend of mine (non-Objectivist) quoted Ludwig Wittgenstein: "If people never did silly things, nothing intelligent would ever get done." So she thinks it's alright and rational to do silly things once in a while. ... Would it be rational to do silly things consciously (in lab, for instance) in the hope that you might end up discovering / inventing something new?

    Tags: Fun, Rationality, Science

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