My friend and fellow immigrant from Canada, philosopher Stephen Hicks, has posted a 9-minute video in which he considers the major wars of the 20th century. His point is that philosophy is practical and that one can see that by considering the philosophical ideas that animated the major protagonists in those wars.

I think it’s a good try but it fails. And it fails because he leaves out the biggest protagonist of the biggest war of the 20th century. Go to about the 3-minute point and you’ll see what I mean.

My guess is that Stephen knew this would undercut his point. Otherwise, why leave it out? But a defender of him on Facebook claimed that it doesn’t, that it’s “the exception that proves the rule.” Maybe, but the exception is so huge.

So here are two questions:

1. (Easy one). What major country does Stephen leave out of which war?

2. If Stephen were to tell the whole story with this country in the picture, would his story make sense?