Mariage homosexuel, homoparentalit√© ed adoption. Essay by Gilles Bernheim

This booklet was recently translated in italian and was recommended to me by a friend.

The purpose of the book was to put together a strong argument against the law on the subject that was being discussed at the time of publishing by the French Parliament.
The law was recently approved hence the book was not able to steer the vote away from the promised outcome of the election campaign.
Even if the political target was not reached still the book was a contribution to the ample discussion that happened in France after the general election and before the vote of the law.

It’s a very easy reading as anyone would hope for if a book has to make an impact on a wide audience and is without religious references.
The strongest arguments, in my opinion, are the ones that are centered about whether or not a baby can be considered an object (of someone’s right) instead of a subject (with his own rights).

This same caveat about object/subject can be applied (either implicitly or explicitly) in relation of abortion.
In a number of legislations there it is a limit to the time when an abortion is legal: at some point in time the fetus is considered a person (hence a subject) and before is considered only an object.
I think that either a foetus is a person from time 0 of no one is ever a person: putting an arbitrary term for the switch is subject to a strong attack with the logical paradox called sorite.
This problem is somewhat limited in practical application in the case of abortion: after the fact there it is no more evolution of the foetus from an object to a subject.

For an adoption and assisted procreation this is different.
Even assuming that at the time of the decision the baby is an object this will not remain true as the time moves on: at some point in time the baby will become a subject with rights and the law should really deal with this fact from day 1.

For this argument to be effective it’s clearly necessary to have an agreement on whether or not a person has the right to have a mother and a father and this is only slightly easier to agree upon than the other one: quite a few people disagrees with the idea that “natural for a human being” and “right” do match.
How could we get away from this problem?
In my opinion by taking into account the wider and more general question: a human being can be an object (or a mean to someone else’s end)? (1)
Here the number of persons that would say yes goes down: as it’s often the case it’s easier to be conservative when we have a direct interest.

The implication of (1) applies clearly not only to the specific scenario of the book but to the parenthood in general.

The liberal mind by Kenneth Minogue

I’ve really appreciated this book.
With a few exceptions tied to some of the specific examples used the reader could easily think that this book was written very recently and not 50 years ago.

The Author analyzes in detail the dynamics that starting from the Liberalism lead to the liberal thinking.
Today we’re so immersed in the liberal thinking (even if in some countries the Liberal party is right-wing party) that most people would consider it the same as the liberalism while this is not the case.

The description of the evolution of desires into needs and of needs into rights is one of the most interesting parts.
The distinction about freedom considered as a potential to do things vs. the actual doing is also a very significant subject.

I recommend the book as it helps understand how the liberal thinking is pushed to the general audience and how the language is manipulated to make everyone not adhering appear as old-fashioned and against the progress.

This book is useful both for liberals (as they better understand the way they think) and for non-liberals as this helps in both in discussing with liberals and in resisting the liberal pressure to homologate.

Dalla parte dei vinti by Piero Buscaroli

In Italy WWII history was written by the winners, as it’s usually the case everywhere in the world when a war is over.

At school I was taught that the good guys (US+GB) saved my country from the bad guys (the Germans and the fascist government of the time).
In the study books it looked like it was a nice and peaceful process for the population and that only minor civilian casualties happened in Italy.

After over 60 years a few voices can be heard that describe what happened in a less manichean way.
Piero Buscaroli is one of those voices: you may feel a strong sense of discomfort when reading this book as it could shatter the a comfortable system of believes that was built over time.
Like other books that go against years of propaganda (Solzhenitsyn‘s Archipelagos Gulag comes to my mind as the most relevant example) this is a must read to develop a better understanding of human and political dynamics and of history.