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The pole vault symbolises a skilled task requiring experience, as encountered in their daily work by performers, employees, athletes, students and artists. Coaching can bring Improvement. Self-coaching is a revolution that replaces trusting in others’ advice, with empirical analysis. 

Megan is a pole vaulter directed by her lived experience, with feedback from her performances, following Heidegger’s method of phenomenological analysis. Educators know that there can be a wide gulf between the mind of a coach or tutor and his or her student. The student’s observation, intuition and self-analysis is most important.

Turkeys Not Bees is a story about a performer who relies on self-coaching and excels. Her input is complemented by her boyfriend Chance’s biomechanical digital modelling, creating a type of virtual reality for her to explore. Her solitary achievement is a microcosm of turkey-like human endurance, contrasting with bee-like colonisation by territorial aggression.

The book has philosophy, science, psychology, Debord’s spectacle and a romance, in an exciting story, including non-violent disobedience, protesting of overreach by a nanny state and Covid restrictions.

Book available on Amazon. Reviews see



When an individualistic man and an individualistic woman combine talents as postgraduates, they are very successful until nanny state ‘levellers’ force them into competition with ordinary folk. They become reality entertainers, earning media profits and gaining obedience for government pandemic restrictions. Will they and the elite be able to resist, with non-violent civil disobedience?  Turkeys Not Bees is an action-packed story, in which Megan and Chance discover each other and philosophies that shape their lives together.

Book available on Amazon. Reviews are on blog:


Our nanny state in Australia is a tool of capitalism. It cultivates mass markets and has the appearance of economy and efficiency. Market and state work side by side, giving the appearance of providing for individual choice and community. The partnership is unhealthy because the market passes unprofitable supply to the state, for example rural telephones and rail, because inequality is a breeding ground for politics. Conversely, when the state develops a profitable business, it is expected to stand aside for the market to adopt it, for example the internet, for which equality can be branded. The nanny state serves public welfare as well as capitalism. 

People want to have opportunities equal to others’. If they perceive conditions as fair, they enjoy competition when it benefits them and disadvantages others,. There are many types of equal opportunity, from equal status, equal rights, equal education, equal employment, equal pay, equal healthcare, equal hours, and so on. 

They also want some facets of their lives not to be equal, to be individual, unique and distinctive. They want jobs to be individualised for them and made unequal, with specialised access and technologies. They want unequal pay, that recognises their voluntary contribution. They want unequal hours that allow them to flex. They want to be able to choose aspects of their job unequal with others. 

They want to be able to take unequal holidays on different days. They want personal treatment by their supervisor. They may prefer to have a choice of dress, rather than a uniform. They do not want their home to be the same as everyone else’s. They want to be able to save at their rate, amass their own amount of wealth and will their estate to the beneficiaries they nominate.

They do not want long queues for privileges, such as promotion, cars, houses and transfers. They do not want available products and services to be equal for everyone. 

Equality is easily recognised in competition, whereas inequality may be wanted secretly. Equality is easily regulated, but inequality may have to run the gamut of envy, jealousy and complaint. Being unequal, the nanny state could be charged with unfairness. It can become a whipping post for competition between individual employees.

Whereas all employees are supposed to be on the same side, that idea is supplanted in many workplaces by team allegiances, or alternatively, by selfishness. A nanny state can lubricate workplaces with equality by raising awareness of its dimensions. One approach is least common denominators. Fostering of inequalities is less well-suited to mass management. An approach is ‘levelling’, whereby individuals’ competitiveness in wanted dimensions is equalised by attempting to equalise outcomes.

In the novel ‘Turkeys Not Bees’ a nanny state and sports industry want an appearance of more equality and less elitism. They begin levelling performers. High and low performers are equalised by handicapping them like horses in a race. 

Levelling also starts in employment, health provision and education. 

The protagonists Megan and Chance oppose the nanny state.

Will they succeed?

‘Turkeys Not Bees’ is an exciting fiction story by Martin Knox on Amazon. Reviews:


Megan has become a champion by training herself to be independent, learning from her lived experience, in the moment, selfish, seeking quality, professional and committed. She won’t be directed, controlled by others’ experience, not by clocks, not by false equality, not without purpose, nor obsessed by quantities, neither amateurish, nor detached. She is more like a brush turkey than a bee.

She has support from her boyfriend Chance, a renegade escaped from employment as a physicist, who was on a treadmill and now revels in his academic freedom.  

They justify her characteristics with well known philosophies, psychology and science. She learns phenomenology and flow. Megan opposes greedy coaches, jealous competitors, narrow-minded researchers, sports officials intent on profiting from her performances and from health officials who want her vaccinated. Megan is non-violent. Can she win by passive resistance? 

Turkeys Not Bees is novel fiction by Martin Knox. On Amazon. Reviews:

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