First the good news. A new (2013) and youthful (1982) federal Labor MP (Gellibrand), Tim Watts, not only reads books but blogs about them on a website called Blogging the Bookshelf. In fact, all the books he's read from 2013 -2015. He's even got a handy rating system for you: BUY, BORROW, TOSS
But how does Tim choose the books he reads? Does he just walk into a bookshop (or St Vinnies?) and pick them up at random? Does he just read books others have passed on to him or recommended? Does he gravitate towards some subjects rather than others?
He doesn't say. His lists seem pretty much random. Some clarity here would be welcome.
Now for the bad news. Of all the books Tim could have read to gain some idea - which after all is the point of reading books, right? - about WTF is going on in Palestine/Israel he's chosen Start-Up Nation by Dan Senor & Saul Singer* and My Promised Land by Ari Shavit.
The first is about how enforcing an occupation produces budding entrepreneurs. Tim gives it a BORROW rating.
So if I were to write a book suggesting that maybe Australia should introduce conscription and invade, occupy and police PNG because this will turn us into a start-up nation, Tim would rate it BORROW as opposed to TOSS?
The second is about how wonderful Israelis are, and how they created "something unique and quite endearing" in a tough (Arab) neighborhood. Tim gives it a BUY rating.
So if I were to write a self-congratulatory book called My Promised Land about how wonderful Australians are, and how we created 'something unique and quite endearing' in a tough (Aboriginal) neighborhood, Tim would rate it BUY as opposed to TOSS?
Can we detect a pattern here then? An unfortunate predilection for Zionist potboilers?
Why so? Well, this is the Labor Party, and if you want to get ahead there...
And, significantly, he's been rambammed - 2014:
"Watts said he was impressed by the objectivity of the Rambam program, which he said exposed him to a diverse range of views and the space to develop his own views on Israel without intrusion or interference." (See my 9/6/14 post Israeli-Occupied Labor.)
But I'm curious: where did these two books come from? Michael Danby? AIJAC? Israel's Foreign Ministry?
And I'm also curious as to how a bloke who's declared in parliament that "multiculturalism is important to me" can give the thumbs-up to sales brochures for an ethnocratic, apartheid state.
[*See my 23/4/10 post Creative Destruction.]
PS: Check out his reading list for 2001: Wall-to-wall Leon Uris, including EXODUS. So that's when the Ziobug first bit. It's like the herpes virus, once it's in your system it's there forever!