If there is a personality and a theme of the weekend it has to be Martin Amis and the debate he has caused with his book The Second Plane. By all accounts the book is a collection of essays and short stories collecting together the thoughts Amis has on the currewnt war againt terror. He was on the BBC news, the Newsnight Review and then an odd story about how much he is being paid per hour to teach at Manchester University appeared in The Times today.
Amis is of course allowed to put down on paper his thoughts about his feelings towards those who would blow innocent women, men and children up in the name of some religious cause. Okay so he might have a track record of being rather isolated because let’s face it he is hardly the most loveable character. But as Jeanette Winterson said last night on Newsnight he has shown that it is possible to think in print and as a result it is an important book.
You might not like what someone is saying or thinking but the cornerstone of a free society is that they get their chance to say it and then with freedom in turn the debate can ensue.
Does make you wonder how long The Times sat on the story about his salary until waiting until Amis was back in the spotlight to offer up the scoop.