JoNova

A science presenter, writer, speaker & former TV host; author of The Skeptic's Handbook (over 200,000 copies distributed & available in 15 languages).


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The Skeptics Handbook II

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Books

They Thought They Were Free — Living in Nazi Germany during the transition

Thousands were asleep at the wheel, occupied with busywork, and an endless trail of minor crises. Each little step was worse than the one before, inexorably, but only a little worse. Like a field of corn that we never see growing — but one day it is over our head.

There is no time when everyone realizes together and lifts in mass protest. Instead, little moments tip the balance, one person at a time. And once awake, good people don’t want to be troublemakers. They are afraid to stand out.

Its all so human while it becomes something so horribly inhumane.

The form of the nation stays the same but the spirit changes to become something people would never have accepted even five years earlier. Like perhaps the idea that people who committed, at most, a minor misdemeanor, a trespass, could be kept without charges in solitary confinement for months on end.

We are a gregarious species. It is hardwired. Our great strength is also our greatest vulnerability…

So many wait for someone else to speak up.



 

Excerpt from pages 166-73 of They Thought They Were Free: The Germans, 1933-45. They interviewed 10 Germans who talked […]

Total Body Scam? — Taking your money and freedom, (and coming to Australia too)

Was it just me? Was I the only one who noticed a tiny announcement in February that Airport Scanners were coming to Australia, the land where terrorists haven’t landed (yet), and … wait for it… there would be no (NO!) — opt — out– clause. Did I hear that correctly?

And the crowd roared (about the cricket), nobody said a word about the scanners, and the ten libertarians left who can bear to watch the ABC were too busy trying to save the nation from nastier threats. Australia is getting millimeter wave scanners at International Airports, and if you don’t want to be scanned, you need to leave the country… by boat. (Either that or swim with the crocs across the Timor Sea.)

Metal objects show up on a white body, but not on a black background. Image: Daily Mail and Herald Sun.

With no opt out clause, what happens when the first person facing deportation refuses to be scanned? Well that’s all right then, we’ll just book them on a cruise to Kandahar? Civil Liberties Australia was one of the few to speak up. Maybe those scanners are safe? Maybe? But at least one man with a pacemaker […]