Question #28: “What’s Better? Invisibility? Or Flight?”

11 Mar

This is a Babylonian engraving, circa 2800 B.C.

13 Year old Johnny from Nashville sent me this one. It’s a very good question, one that people have been asking for hundreds, maybe thousands of years. From Plato, there is the “Ring of Gyges” scenario. The question: would we, as humans, maintain our morality if we were to become invisible? And as far as flight…well, everyone who has ever lived has obviously wanted to fly, Johnny; we dream about it all the time, and in Mesopotamia, there have been carvings found of mythological Superman figures, dating back to at least 2,800 B.C. The answer, Johnny, is quite complex, but in short: you’re a goddamned little idiot. Have you ever heard of these things?

Even dogs have figured this shit out, Johnny, for fuck's sake.

OK. Now how far along are we on the invisibility suit, Johnny?

At best, some shit like this. And this is post Photoshop, too. I don't know about you, Johnny, but I can quite easily spot the man in this fucking picture.

If you thought about it a little harder, Johnny, you would realize that if you chose invisibility, you could easily sneak your way into banging Michelle Rodriguez, Kim Kardashian, Eva Mendes, Jessica Alba, Rihanna, Catherine Zeta Jones, Oprah (to each his own, OK, readers?), Jessica Simpson, and many others, stealing all their money, and simply contributing to the badly-needed research funds for the development of a better rocket pack.

The answer is invisibility, Johnny. You’re obviously not the brightest star in the galaxy. Please never email me again.

Have a hypothetical question that you find intriguing? Is it one that has been debated for years? I’m the guy to make your answers come true! Email me at I’m a certified advice columnist and former Chair of the Philosophy Department at U.C. Berkeley.

I answer all questions ever.



2 Responses to “Question #28: “What’s Better? Invisibility? Or Flight?””

  1. Ed HAWKINS March 31, 2011 at 1:49 am #

    Where are you. Come back. Hope you’re not in jail.

  2. The Other Teacher March 12, 2011 at 3:47 am #

    hmm…you make some good arguments but I would still would prefer to fly. Not in a plane though. I would want huge angel wings, rainbow coloured of course with sparkles here and there. That way I would have full control over where I was going while looking effin awesome!

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