I hear with my little ear: Podcasts 17-25 March 2021

The Forum (BBC). People really must have put up with a lot of pain before modern dentistry. I’m such a wimp in my old age that just the thought of having a feeling without a needle now makes me feel quite faint (even though most of my early fillings were done without anesthetic because my mother, who was paying the bill, didn’t believe in needles “now that drills are so fast”). Adventures with dentures: The story of dentistry is fascinating. Makes you glad to be alive in the 21st century

Rear Vision (ABC) Now that the COVID supplement is coming to a close, the government has given a risible $4.00 a day increase to the Jobseeker allowance. (The name has changed from Newstart – which was always a false promise- to Jobseeker – just to remind the recipients that they’re looking for a job) The struggle for work – why are the unemployed expected to live below the poverty line looks at the history of unemployment benefits.

Saturday Extra (ABC) I haven’t yet read Judith Brett’s essay in the Monthly (because I am so behind in reading The Monthly) but she talks about her essay here and perhaps I won’t have to. In Our Universities, the Humanities, Our Society she had this old humanities-loving-baby-boomer nodding her head in agreement. Then there was a fascinating piece on Wikipedia turns 20. Apparently one of the biggest threats to Wikipedia now is that people just look at the Google ‘snippet’ and don’t both going to the article. So, there’s a belated New Years Resolution- go to the article.

Heather Cox Richardson. I’m not sure if her series on Reconstruction finishes here or not. On February 26 she starts off with a good summary of the ground that she has covered over the past few weeks (and I was thinking that if you were joining the series here, this would be a good place to start – but if it’s the end, then don’t bother!) She talks about how the South became solidly Democrat (until Barry Goldwater) and in effect a one-party state. The Republicans in the north were pretty dodgy, adding states to keep power, even though there almost certainly wasn’t the population to sustain it. She finishes with the Wilmington coup of 1898 which was, until recently, America’s only coup.

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