D-Day at home and abroad. Commentary from Don Aitkin. He touched on something that has troubled me for a long time, how many times have you seen any estimate of the number of civilians who died in the battles that raged across France? “Not everyone remembers that the French themselves lost thousands of people as a result of the Allied bombing that preceded the landings and through the conflict itself. The city of Caen was almost destroyed. There is no cemetery to celebrate the lives of the 30,000 or so civilians who died there.”
45 years on. Not quite on a par with D Day, on June 6 1969 I arrived in Sydney with all my things in a Vauxhall Viva De Luxe to live in a small room in Glebe to read in the Fisher Library, study sociology and sort out some problems in the philosophy and methodology of the social sciences. It took longer than expected because sociology at the Uni of NSW turned out to be a complete crock.
Climate stuff. A historical feature, the thread of doom on Troppo in 2011 that signalled the divide that opened up between apparently reasonable people on the global warming issue with a warning that the ALP would crash and burn as a result of the alliance with the Greens. Is there a scientific consensus? Don Aitkin on the supposed consensus. Carbon capture. Don’t stand or live too close!
Books. Books in Paris. First editions from the 1940s. A genuine bargain for students of economics. More selections for the discriminating collector of historical sea logs. Food books. More interesting titles.
Around the town. IPA HEY. The Sydney Institute. Australian Taxpayers Alliance, Liberty on the Rocks, the notice board for the ATA: Quadrant on line, Mannkal Foundation, Centre for Independent Studies.
For nerds. Melvyn Bragg’s radio program. Coronation, Social Contract and All That. Anthony de Jasay’s June column shows “scant respect for the popularly accepted views of political obedience, collective choice, and the role of government.” He explores the perception that the individual owes some obedience to the state and the asymmetry that exists between individual and collective choice. The “social contract,” that oft-used term, is unpacked, and de Jasay considers the significance of the rule-making process in social life, particularly at the constitutional level.