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Read any good books?


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Here's a list of audiobooks to which I listened prior to starting this thread.  A recent 4,000km road trip to and from my old home town of Adelaide accounted for a few on the list.   Audiobooks are pretty useful when you're traversing large tracts of Australia.

  • The Fast 800 - Dr Micheal Moseley 
  • Talking to Strangers - Malcolm Gladwell
  • Dark Emu - Bruce Pascoe
  • A Short History of Nearly Everything - Bill Bryson
  • Only Time Will Tell - Jeffrey Archer
  • Coffin Road - Peter May
  • Dirt to Soil - Gabe Brown
  • Teaming with Microbes - Jeff Lowenfels and Wayne Lewis
  • The World in a Grain - Vince Beiser
  • Outliers - Malcolm Gladwell
  • Love is not Enough - Mark Manson
  • David and Goliath - Malcolm Gladwell
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I'm currently reading  - Queen breeding (Køniginnenzucht), by Friedrich Ruttner. 

It's a nice book, however I have to read it a chapter here and a chapter there, as my understanding/experience develops.   So it's more like a illustrated dictionary than a book, to me. But still a really good read on apiculture.


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I've just finished Skin in the Game: Hidden Asymmetries in Daily Life - a 2018 nonfiction book by Nassim Nicholas Taleb.

Taleb's thesis is that skin in the game...i.e...having a measurable risk when taking a major decision—is necessary for fairness, commercial efficiency, and risk management, as well as being necessary to understand the world.

I'm just starting up Malcolm Gladwell's most recent work...

In The Bomber Mafia: A Dream, a Temptation, and the Longest Night of the Second World War, Malcolm Gladwell uses original interviews, archival footage and his trademark insight to weave together the stories of a Dutch genius and his homemade computer, a band of brothers in central Alabama, a British psychopath, and pyromaniacal chemists at Harvard. As listeners hear these stories unfurl, Gladwell examines one of the greatest moral challenges in modern American history. 

Most military thinkers in the years leading up to World War II saw the airplane as an afterthought. But a small band of idealistic strategists had a different view. This “Bomber Mafia” asked:  What if precision bombing could, just by taking out critical choke points — industrial or transportation hubs – cripple the enemy and make war far less lethal?

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My current audiobook is Sacred Cow by Diana Rogers and Robb Wolf.



We're told that if we care about our health-or our planet-eliminating red meat from our diets is crucial. That beef is bad for us and cattle farming is horrible for the environment. But science says otherwise. 

Beef is framed as the most environmentally destructive and least healthy of meats. We're often told that the only solution is to reduce or quit red meat entirely. But despite what anti-meat groups, vegan celebrities, and some health experts say, plant-based agriculture is far from a perfect solution. In Sacred Cow, registered dietitian Diana Rodgers and former research biochemist and New York Timesbestselling author Robb Wolf explore the quandaries we face in raising and eating animals-focusing on the largest (and most maligned) of farmed animals, the cow. 

Inside, Rodgers and Wolf reveal contrarian but science-based findings, such as: 

  • Meat and animal fat are essential for our bodies
  • A sustainable food system cannot exist without animals
  • A vegan diet may destroy more life than sustainable cattle farming
  • Regenerative cattle ranching is one of our best tools at mitigating climate change 

You'll also find practical guidance on how to support sustainable farms and a 30-day challenge to help you transition to a healthful and conscientious diet. With scientific rigour, deep compassion, and wit, Rodgers and Wolf argue unequivocally that meat (done right) should have a place on the table. It's not the cow, it's the how!


I didn't realise that, in some countries, it's illegal to feed a vegan diet to babies or young children.

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My current read...(or listen)...is Blood and Money...by David McNally.




Blood and Money tells the story of money as a history of violence and human bondage. 

In most accounts of the origins of money, we are offered pleasant tales in which it arises to the mutual benefit of all parties as a result of barter. In this groundbreaking study David McNally reveals the true story of money's origins and development as one of violence and human bondage. Money's emergence and its transformation are shown to be intimately connected to the buying and selling of slaves and the waging of war. 

Blood and Money demonstrates the ways that money has "internalized" its violent origins, making clear that it has become a concentrated force of social power and domination. Where Adam Smith observed that monetary wealth represents "command over labor", this paradigm shifting book amends his view to define money as comprising the command over persons and their bodies.


Did you know that the first money...in the form of coins...was minted in Ancient Greece - to enable the Greek state to pay its mercenaries?

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