Ask Matt Labash

Ask Matt Labash Vol. XLII: Julian Assange – hero or sainted hero? – the please don’t hack me edition, and catch-and-release Jesus

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Matt, what do you think about WikiLeaks/Julian Assange? Is he a hero or a traitor? Or is he just an average Joe trying to make a living?  –  LibertyBelle

Allow me to walk you through my thought process here, because like Julian Assange, I believe in transparency. I’m of divided mind on this. On the one hand, the First Amendment-loving libertarian in me likes to say put all available information out there, and let the chips fall. As I’m fond of pronouncing, “Where secrecy or mystery begins, vice or roguery is not far off.” (Actually, I didn’t say that. Samuel Johnson did. So let’s keep that our little secret.)

On the other hand, the patriot in me who hates creepy, condom-eschewing anti-Americans who resemble, as my friend Michael Moynihan put it, “Edgar Winter as imagined by Jim Henson,” wouldn’t mind seeing him put in a cage at Gitmo. Not just because he might’ve compromised American security and endangered personnel, but because I think there’s too many Muslims there, and I don’t see why, while they’re in an American prison, they shouldn’t be subject to the same diversity concerns as the rest of us.

So you ask if he’s a hero or a traitor? Well, he can’t very well be a traitor. Assange is Australian. Maybe if he’d gone around revealing Elle Macpherson’s beauty secrets or the Foster’s Lager recipe, then we could hang him on that hook. The more fitting question might be is he a hero or an a-hole? And after weighing the evidence, after seeing his rabid supporters hack into Visa, MasterCard, PayPal, eBay and Amazon – because what better way for free-speech absolutists to get their point across than crippling everyone who doesn’t agree with them – I’m going to have to go with “hero.” Strike that, “sainted hero.” Not because I believe he is, mind you. I just have to play it safe.  I can’t afford to see The Daily Caller’s online store go down during the Christmas season, since I get a cut of every Ask Matt Labash thong sold. Daddy needs a new iPod Touch