Blockhead

16

I’ve been searching for a cure for Writer’s Block, but the only one that seems to work is to start writing. We shall see whether it is effective or not.

An update on me first, then perhaps some less important stuff about the rest of the universe. I’m doing ok, thank you. Half way through my three-month holiday from Oncology and so far so good on my mutated lymphocyte guerrilla army. But if I am temporarily playing hooky from the claws of Oncology, I am spending a lot of time trying to repair some of the ravages of two years of cancer treatment. Chemotherapy works on the old tested procedure of destroying villages in order to save them. Or, a more modern metaphor, on the IMF procedure of imposing austerity on countries in order to repair them

So I continue my work on the coffee table magnum opus “Medical waiting rooms of the Southern Hemisphere”, and my quest to appear in the Guinness Book of Medical Records as the person who has consulted more medical specialists than any other. Both going well.

I am also making the dog get fit by taking him on longer and longer walks each day. “No, no” he says, hiding behind the chair “not another walk, I am fit enough already”. But I insist, gotta be cruel to be kind, hurts me more than it hurts him, Rome wasn’t built in a day… Er, yes, whatever, I’m probably getting fitter too.

Need to get fit. Loins to be girded, greaves fitted, horses saddled. Just three months from an Australian election that currently looks like installing a man in the Lodge who believes in destroying Australia in order to save it for mining and media billionaires. Time for all people of goodwill to try to prevent this disaster. Tony Abbott is a man not fit for purpose.

Unlike James Gandolfini whose premature and sad death, unable to be saved by medical specialists, was announced this week. If ever there was a man made for a dramatic role, and a role made for a man, it was Gandolfini and Tony Soprano. Right up there with Ian McShane/Al Swearengen, and Bryan Cranston/Walter White (Cranston graciously immediately acknowledging his great acting debt to Gandolfini).

I didn’t know Gandolfini of course, except as that enormously complex character Tony Soprano, but the obituaries suggest he was a very nice man. Another death recently, of someone who was a great friend, did affect me greatly personally. It was quick, and in the end shockingly sudden, another victim of that Grim Reaper Cancer, and I shall miss him a lot after a 40 year friendship.

This week had lunch with another old friend, also with cancer (is there more of it about, or am I just more sensitised to it?). She fortunately is having successful treatment, and conversely was pleased to see me “looking well”, having recently seen a friend with cancer who wasn’t. I saw her just after going to the pro-renewable energy rally, organised to oppose the fools on the Hill, led by Mr Jones, trying to stop wind power. Our rally was, pleasingly, ten times bigger. Equally pleasing was the mix of old and young people. The earth is being destroyed in order to exploit it, and we urgently need to start repairing the ravages of that exploitation. Wind Power is a critically important (as Jones and his promoters know) part of that repair, and we all need to stand up and be counted on this issue too.

So all kinds of reasons to get my Writer’s Block sorted and out of the way – work to be done, head to be cleared.

I wonder if my cure has worked.

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16 comments on “Blockhead

  1. Dianne says:

    Sending Best Wishes. x

    Sent from my iPad

    Like

  2. Heather says:

    Good to read your story David. And I admire your energy and resolve under difficult circumstances. More power to you.

    Like

  3. Susan Joy says:

    Seems to have worked David. Another good read, given me lots to think about as well as spurring me on to write. It was reassuring to see that the anti wind people had a poor turnout. However they are well organised with money and legal advice I hear.
    Looking forward to more insights from you.

    Like

  4. gordonwa says:

    Keep getting well David, and keep exercising (I should take my own advice!)

    Glad you were able to make it to the pro-renewables rally. I was there in spirit as it was a bit far for me to travel from Fremantle. It was great to learn of Jones’ massive flop, not that the MSM/ABC informed us. I followed it on twitter (I enjoy your tweets) then read about it on Independent Australia where I left a comment.

    Keep up the good work!

    Like

  5. Eric Snyder says:

    Glad to hear of your health continuing to improve David! My wife suffered from “chemonesia” for about 3 years after her 5 years of chemo. That poison definitely takes a toll.

    Not sure why anyone would be opposed to wind power? I know it does kill a lot of birds but I’m not sure if that is a reason given by the “antis.” There is no anti-wind power movement in the US that I’m aware of; just those opposed to the gov’t funding of the wind power industry.

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    • David Horton says:

      Three years eh Eric, thanks a lot! It sure does take a toll.

      The anti-wind farm thing is unique to Australia and is the latest weapon in the battle to prevent any action on climate change being waged by energy industry funded think tanks. Really cynical – frightening people for no reason, then capitalising on that fear politically.

      Like

    • Geoff Andrews says:

      Yes Eric, the “antis” DO assert that wind power kills a lot of birds, including rare and endangered species, so their concern for our avian cohabitators, although at odds with the opinions of their fellow-travellers, does them proud.
      We, God’s chosen species, kill 500 million birds a year.
      1 in 10,000 is killed by wind farms.
      So let’s forget about the 9,999 descendants of dinosaurs killed by cars, buildings, cats and shooters; the thought of that one extra feathered friend; that 1 in 10000, being mutilated by the noisy, whirring blades of a wind farm has, understandably, tipped the balance of and in their minds between the irresponsibility of renewable energy and the warm safety of a fossil-fueled world.
      And of course the last thing we would want is a nanny state government spending society’s money trying to prevent a rapturous doom.

      Like

      • Eric says:

        Wow Geoff, you were ready to go! My question about anti wind was serious. I’m not sure why folks are opposed to wind. But, the rapturous doom is really not a concern of mine. The planet’s survived quite a few insults.

        Like

        • Geoff Andrews says:

          No, Eric.
          Your question was not serious; it was rhetorical because you then go on to answer your own question (David didn’t pose it) with two of the standard, hollow arguments of the “antis”, with whom you may wish to communicate by simply googling “wind farm birds america”.
          However, back to pedantry ….
          Suppose I write: “Not sure why I’m opposed to Eric’s philosophy?”
          … and then go on to list several points of difference, I can hardly argue that I was asking a serious question or that I wasn’t trolling or that it wasn’t an aunt sally or a provocation.
          However, if I write the simple statement: “Not sure why I’m opposed to Eric’s philosophy.” …no question mark, just a full stop ….big difference, eh?
          I completely understand why a “rapturous doom is really not a concern” of yours
          Not even the “doom” bit?
          Perhaps you have it on good authority that the rapture will precede to doom?
          Whoops! There’s another impertinent question mark; I’m getting snider than you.

          Like

          • Eric Snyder says:

            I honestly don’t know why people are opposed to wind power. We use it a lot in Southern California quite successfully. The amount of birds that die from turbine blades is not an issue to me but I can imagine that it is to some. The people I know who are opposed to gov’t subsidies for wind power aren’t opposed to wind power; just the subsidies.

            I have no idea what you’re talking about with rapturous doom, doom bit, impertinent question marks, or snider than me. You can’t get any Snyder than me though!

            Like

            • Geoff Andrews says:

              We’ll make an atheist liberal out of you yet, mate!
              The first paragraph of your last comment could / should have been your first comment to avoid controversy?

              Like

              • Eric Snyder says:

                Sorry Geoff, I haven’t got enough faith to become atheist and I’m too practical to buy into liberal gov’t. But, I will make an effort to be more careful with my punctuation!

                Like

  6. fred says:

    Being a keen birder I thought I would check out the claim that wind turbines kill birds.
    Specifically this:
    [We, God’s chosen species, kill 500 million birds a year.
    1 in 10,000 is killed by wind farms]
    which I work out as about 50,000 birds per year.]

    So this is what Wiki has to say.
    [A study by Benjamin K. Sovacool, Energy Governance Program, Centre on Asia and Globalisation, Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, National University of Singapore, in 2008 suggests that if it were possible to replace all fossil fuel generation world-wide with wind turbines, almost 14 million fewer avian mortalities would occur annually due to human causes. This study did a broad assessment of anthropogenic causes of avian mortality and brought together many studies on deaths due to wind energy, fossil fuel energy and nuclear energy. It found that Wind farms and nuclear power stations are responsible each for between 0.3 and 0.4 fatalities per gigawatt-hour (GWh) of electricity while fossil-fueled power stations are responsible for about 5.2 fatalities per GWh. While the study did not assess bat mortality due to various forms of energy, it is not unreasonable to assume a similar ratio of mortality]
    …..
    An article in the journal Nature stated that each wind turbine kills an average of 4.27 birds per year
    ….
    There is a table for bird deaths pa from various causes in the US.
    Those related to wind turbines are minimal with other ‘acceptable’ less controversial causes having impacts [sorry] far greater eg communication towers about 100 to 200 times greater [check my maths].

    Like

    • Eric Snyder says:

      Very interesting info Fred, thanks for posting this. To my earlier point, if bird mortality isn’t very much of an issue, that only leaves gov’t subsidy as a reason for opposition to wind power. So, that makes it even more difficult for me to understand why anyone would oppose developing wind as a power source. Not sure what involvement the gov’t has in Australian wind power but the US has a lot of private money invested as well as gov’t dollars.

      Like

  7. fred says:

    Sorry about the bad indenting/quoting.

    Like

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