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March 14, 2005

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Given that we're prone to listing things here, here are some of my bests and saddests from the interview (transcript available over at Garden of Forking Paths [the link to which can be found on the right here]):

Saddest TV personality dismissal of philosophy: They’re like little affirmations (Jon Stewart)

Best role model for our undergraduates fiddling with margins and whatnot to make a thin paper fit the assignment: My editor at the Princeton University Press got the idea of publishing it as a book. And when he brought it up I said, “What are you talking about? It’s a 25 page essay, how can you bring it out as a book?” He said, “Well we can do lots with margins, and types of fonts, and page sizes…and that’s what they did.” (Harry Frankfurt)

Best relocation for what politicans and their PR hacks do: leave "spin alley" and head down to bullshit street (Stewart)

Best moment for academics to identify with: when asked whether the propensity to bullshit has cycles or just keeps piling, Frankfurt responds, It just keeps piling...[Laughter]...Did I say something funny? Stewart: You did! You know what it is -- It is the idea that you consider this so…I can see it in your head…you’re really thinking, and that is – on Comedy Central – unheard of. So we appreciate it. Frankfurt:Well, that’s how I make my living.

Looks like the Garden of Forking Paths has the complete transcript of the Frankfurt Daily Show. See http://gfp.typepad.com/the_garden_of_forking_pat/2005/03/frankfurt_on_bu.html

How to get more philosophers into the media? More appearances like Harry Frankfurt's on the Daily Show!

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