Some things were REALLY BETTER then.

This is why today feels like an alien planet to oldies like me. I have added to the ideas in this email currently going the rounds…

There are two aspects to this. How it was when we were kids and how it was when we became Parents. Then, life didn’t change very rapidly, so much of what applied to me as a kid, also applied to my children. Some things were REALLY BETTER then. My next post will be on some things that were REALLY WORSE then.

We survived being born to mothers who smoked and/or drank while they carried us and lived in houses made of asbestos. We smoked and/or drank while we carried our own children. The modern horrors of doing so didn’t seem apparent in any way.

We took aspirin, ate blue cheese, raw egg products, loads of bacon and processed meat, tuna from a can. We ate for two when we were pregnant. And we just ate well at other times and didn’t get tested for diabetes, breast cancer or cervical cancer. It didn’t seem common. Not too many people were fat.

After that trauma of childbirth we recuperated in hospital so we could cope when we got home. We drove home proudly carrying our new babies in our arms in the front passenger seat. Our baby cots when we were in them were covered with bright coloured lead-based paints, but we were aware it was not good for our own babies. Our babies slept on their stomachs or propped on their sides so they wouldn’t choke on their own vomit.

We had no childproof lids on medicine bottles, doors or cabinets and when we rode our bikes, we had no helmets or shoes, not to mention, the risks we took hitchhiking. We rode in the back of pickups – it was the best fun.

As children, we would ride in cars with no seat belts or air bags. Babies sat in baby seats that simply hung over the back of the seat. There were no headrests.We weren’t strapped into car seats or booster seats.

We drank water from the garden hose and NOT from a bottle. We did not have plastic bottles. Liquids came in glass bottles that we recycled for extra pocket money by returning them to the shop.

Take away food was limited to fish and chips, no pizza shops, McDonalds , KFC, Subway or Nandos. There was no convenience food in the shops. Restaurants were what rich people went to. Everything we ate was made by our Mums or, as Mums ourselves, we made everything from scratch.

Even though all the shops closed at 6.00pm and didn’t open on the weekends, somehow we didn’t starve to death! We had to stock up for the weekend, or really stock up before Christmas, New Year or Easter  – or Bank Holiday weekends. Chicken was really special and we had it roast on Sundays. Sundays were a special day. Mushrooms only grew in fields not in sheds.

You could only buy Easter Eggs and Hot Cross Buns at Easter time. We made our own Christmas decorations and Christmas trees were real. Rich people could afford to buy Christmas Decorations.

We shared one soft drink with four friends, from one bottle and NO ONE actually died from this. We swapped Measles, Mumps, Chicken Pox and Whooping Cough. Everyone got these illnesses. You got to stay off school!

Boys would collect old drink bottles and cash them in at the corner store and buy Toffees, Sweet Cigarettes, Gob stoppers, Bubble Gum and some bangers to blow up frogs with. We ate worms and mud pies made from dirt, and the worms did not live in us forever. Little kids played “doctors and nurses” to learn stuff like their parents did. 

We also ate biscuits, white bread and real butter and drank soft drinks with sugar in it, but we weren’t overweight because we were always outside playing. We had midnight snacks of condensed milk and sardines if our friends stayed over. Girls didn’t know much about sex and the boys were equally ignorant. If we kissed we worried we might fall pregnant. Being really bold was to have a puff on someone’s Dad’s stolen cigarette.

On weekends we would leave home in the morning and play all day, as long as we were back when the street lights came on. No one was able to reach us all day. And we were O.K. To phone home we had to use the Telephone Booth. With a hairpin in the workings, we could get free calls.

Boys would spend hours building go-carts out of old prams and then ride down the hill, only to find out they forgot the brakes. Girls and boys built tree houses and dens and played in river beds with matchbox cars.We fell out of trees, got cut, broke bones and teeth and there were no lawsuits from these accidents.

We did not have Playstations, Nintendo Wii , X-boxes, no video games at all, no 999 channels on SKY, no video/dvd  films, no mobile phones, no personal computers, no Internet or Internet chat rooms. Seeing a live picture of someone talking to you from far away was science fiction – unimaginable.

Boys were given air guns and catapults for their 10th birthdays. They rode bikes or walked to a friend’s house and knocked on the door or rang the bell, or just yelled for them!

Girls did not play Rugby or Cricket or Soccer. Rugby and Cricket had try outs and not everyone made the team. Those who didn’t had to learn to deal with disappointment. Imagine that. Getting into the team was based on merit. We had freedom, failure, success and responsibility, and we learned how to deal with it all.

Our teachers used to hit us with canes and gym shoes or throw things at us. By the time we had children, they were still doing that – mostly. But now they added weird activities like standing with your nose on the  wall during break, to avoid the growing criticism of physical abuse.

A punishment for swearing was having your mouth washed out with soap. If you were really bad, you got spanked.  If we were really really bad – there were “the police”. The idea of a parent bailing us out if we broke the law was unheard of. They actually sided with the law. Neighbours and strangers pulled us up if we were found misbehaving. We belonged to a neighbourhood. It felt safe.

Only girls had pierced ears or wore earrings and jewellery. They wore girly clothes and curled their hair. When we were girls, most Mums didn’t have to go to work to help dad make ends meet. Divorce was unconventional.Our parents didn’t invent strange names for their kids like ‘Kiora’ and ‘Blade’ and ‘Ridge’ and ‘Vanilla.

No one went to “Psychologists” or “Psychiatrists” – you just got on with things if life was horrid. 

We must be a really strong bunch to survive all that – and we are still going!

That was before scientific “statistics”, government “nannying” or the “blame” culture.

 Of course some things were REALLY WORSE then. But more about that later…

Getting drunk whatever the price

When I first arrived in England about 15 years ago now, I remember being utterly shocked by the lack of remorse, regret or shame of the young girls where I worked when they found themselves, after a night out, in bed with an unknown man, or forgot how they got home, or what they had done. They seemed to think getting absolutely “bladdered” was simply amusing. Getting drunk was the objective and pleasure of their outings. In fact they boasted about it.

I am an expert on drinking, being a ‘recovered’ alcoholic and my behaviour under the influence of alcohol was what made me stop drinking. I was ashamed of my behaviour – the loss of memory, the inability to walk, vomiting, hangovers, belligerence and loss of all elegance. Yet these are the things called “fun” by the girls of England  – a very strange situation.  I have nothing against alcohol. But it can be very dangerous stuff. To my mind it has caused more suffering and harm than any cigarette. My smoking friends that gave up because of anti-smoking pressure, say they drink more now. In the UK drinking is portrayed in telly programs as desirable and necessary form of solution/celebration.  Added to that sex has been reduced to the idea of mere copulation and violence, swearing and foul language is served up in huge dollops in the cinema and on TV here.

So if you think foul mouthed, aggressive, sexually abandoned drunkenness is “fun”  – that’s what you’ll do for “fun” in a materialistic, artificial, superficial, hopeless and helpless society.

There is something very wrong with the soul of the UK – deep in the psyche of its citizens. It is an illness that putting up the price of alcohol is not going to “cure”.

It’s US that’s decaying!

I love the scientific method but Scientists scare me! Sometimes I have wondered whether some scientists and countries should have been charged with crimes against humanity!
Watch this – this is simply science in insanity mode – Nuclear Detonation Timeline “1945-1998”, the 2053 nuclear tests and explosions that took place between 1945 and 1998.
2053? Two Thousand and fifty three! What more more did scientists, in such ignorance and “in the name of science” need to know? 
God knows what it has done to the life on Earth – everything must be full of something decaying. When you observe the rising rates of cancer, diabetes, obesity, Alzheimers, Parkinsons, MS, allergies, asthma, and all the “new” plagues blamed on “the ageing population”, lifestyle, second hand smoke, diet etc. – is it US that’s decaying?

Excellent weapon for invading forces – piped baby

At lunchtime, our electrical internet connection was working, but our electric lights weren’t. We were all trying to work out how that could possibly be. Simultaneously the grandchild-baby was yelling for her food at deafeningly high volume.

What the Army should know, is that high volume baby yelling comepletely stops all logical thought in adults and starts them squabbling.

In battles, piped baby-yelling at very high volume, should suitably confuse the enemy.

Peeking through keyholes

A weakness in Science

In 2010 it was known that There were 1,740,330 species on Earth.  In 2011 it was made known that there are 8.7 million species on Earth. That’s science! Yesterday we knew something – but today that something is wrong and we need to understand a new something that cancels out what we thought we knew. Not knowing what we know is unsettling.

In truth thinking people will know that the number of species on Earth are not 8.7 million – but something other. And maybe many species are going extinct. Scientific knowledge is always known today and different tomorrow.

And yet we allow science to guide us with almost religious faith.

Technology that doesn’t challenge what we do or how we think is easy to accept.

But the constant stream of silly medical science that gets dished up by the Media is a problem whether it’s about coffee and heart attacks, wine and breast cancer, the danger of third hand smoke or that an hour’s TV shortens your life by 22 minutes. TWENTY TWO MINUTES – not 20, or 40 – 22 exactly! Most people are exposed to that kind of science – no wonder it simply becomes a laugh.

Science has now become so vast in all it’s disciplines, scientists themselves have too much information.  Are we confident about knowing anything much at all? Every scientist is peeking through a keyhole in the door of his own discipline and has little idea of another keyhole in another field exposing a different view.

When ignorance was bliss and the bowel cancer epidemic

Once, when I was a kid, illness was something people got because it just happened – caused by bad luck, God, fate. Now just about everything we get is caused by ourselves – it’s SUCH a burden to peace of mind.

In  2009 the latest cancer causing agent was ham and processed meats.

“It is only in recent years that the link between processed meats and bowel cancer in adults has been made, with some estimates suggesting that thousands of cases could be prevented if everyone limited intake to 70g a week – the equivalent to three rashers of bacon.”

In 2010 
A type of bacterium known to cause dental decay and skin ulcers may also be linked to bowel cancer, scientists suspect.


Bowel cancer patients who take daily aspirin could cut their chance of dying from the disease by about a third, experts believe.

 This is just an anecdote really – a scientific anecdote made by invisible scientists in whom we are supposed to have faith! Aspirin was supposed to be good for something else too – was it strokes? I know the doctor took my husband off aspirin and it makes me bleed under my skin – not good. I think Pharma are feeling the drop in sales and need to promote it for something else!

I wonder if detergents that we wash our dishes with doesn’t cause bowel cancer. When I was young, we washed dishes in chopped up Sunlight Soap in a “swizzle” cloth. It never seemed to cut the grease and we always rinsed the dishes in clean water. I remember when dish washing detergents came out in the shops. We thought it was a miracle!

Has there been any scientific study of this? But then, what do I know? I’m only guessing like everyone else!

Scientific gobbledegook on lust and probably everything else too!

 I once heard a lecturer challenged about the neuroimaging results of people being shown sexy pictures in a vast, rowdy MRI machine, lying on their backs, trapped in a claustrophobic tunnel, whose brains “lit up” in certain areas whilst experiencing “lust”. The lecturer, in a public lecture, then showed his audience the area of the brain that controls “lust”. Well – the challenge from the audience was – that must be scientific mumbo jumbo surely? What the images showed were the bits in a human brain that lit up whilst being  shown sexy pictures in a vast, rowdy, uncomfortable MRI machine, lying on one’s back, trapped in a claustrophobic situation.

What our brains do during normal conditions of love or lust must be like an enormous fireworks display – science cannot tell us what happens in the brain under proper  normal circumstances – they’ve never seen it.

Its scientific gobbledegook really.


“Then there are the limitations of the functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) technology that produces the pretty pictures. The scans don’t directly tap into the brain, as one might imagine from the hype, they merely detect the increases in blood flow needed to deliver additional oxygen to busy neurons. But neuronal activity lasts milliseconds, Tallis points out, while detected changes in blood flow lag by at least two and as many as ten seconds. Furthermore, many millions of neurons have to be activated for this change in blood flow to be detected. So what we see in brain scans is what is happening in one particular area, some time after the activity has commenced.

Small groups of neurons whose activity elicits little change in blood flow, or a modest network of neurons linking large regions, or neurons acting more efficiently than others, may be of great importance but would be under-represented in the scan or not represented at all. In short, pretty well everything relevant to a given response at a given time might be invisible on an fMRI scan.”

 From a review of the book :Aping Mankind: Neuromania, Darwinitis and the Misrepresentation of Humanity, by Raymond Tallis

Beyond One Commandment – Mystical "knowing"

 My last post The One Commandment was my thought about the Secularist idea that we should have one commandment that could cover our behaviour in all circumstances. Lots of Secularists are Atheists. Often they are charged with not having a moral framework for humans. The One Commandment could be it. I find many Atheists are very aware of what is morally right or wrong. they have been freed from having to follow religious rules stipulating what is right or wrong. How do they “know” what is right or wrong? The One Commandment is so close to Jesus’s teaching, I wonder if it was inspired by Jesus, or did the person who suggested it, have an inner knowing? Did it spring from an inspirational place – or plain “logical thinking” so admired by Atheists?

I am not an Atheist. I am not Religious. But I believe we have an aspect – an inner place, where “knowing” arises. Atheists I know have a problem with this.

I think mystical is not about that which we do not know – I think it is about the delight and surprise that we feel when apprehended by sudden understanding – of knowing right is right, or an expanding of the heart, or an intimate moment with nature or a person. I am very sorry it is contained in the Atheist’s ‘not allowed’ list. I think it shows a very superficial idea of mystical. Many people have mystical experiences, peak experiences, indescribable feelings which mysteriously come upon them, or are gripped by ‘oneness’. This has got nothing to do with believing in god – but only about accepting the depth, richness and beauty of the human experience occurring in a vast body of the Universe .

Here’s a really important point in talking about the mystical element of being alive. It’s from Sam Harris “On Faith”

“So, apart from just commending these phenomena to your attention, I’d like to point out that, as atheists, our neglect of this area of human experience puts us at a rhetorical disadvantage. Because millions of people have had these experiences, and many millions more have had glimmers of them, and we, as atheists, ignore such phenomena, almost in principle, because of their religious associations—and yet these experiences often constitute the most important and transformative moments in a person’s life. Not recognizing that such experiences are possible or important can make us appear less wise even than our craziest religious opponents”.
The problem with Atheism

The One Commandment

Secularists are attempting to make an all encompassing Commandment. I noticed someone suggesting “Treat other people how you would like to be treated yourself” which is a neat rip-off from Jesus “Do unto others, as you would have them do unto you”. This would cover every situation a human ever had to confront but leaves out the God part.So I thought I’d have a look see what the Ten Commandments actually said. To my surprise, I find I actually approve of some of them – (if I leave out the Patriarchal God bit, the graven images and a few other things.)(I think this is from the Catholic Catechism)
1 “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. You shall have no other gods before Me.” 
Dunno about Egypt and the bondage, sounds a bit threatening to me yet mystics and spiritual people affirm that there is only one “God”, nothing else and we are it.
2 “You shall not make for yourself a carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My Commandments.”
Sounds scary but if you were Moses, how would you control your tribe? People were behaving badly, believing there was power in the things they had made and worshiping them. Everyone was smoking, drinking, fornicating, drugging and living an unhealthy lifestyle. We have loads of graven images nowadays that we worship. God’s Commandment was quite as intimidating as Health Science, Climate Science and other Science is today to ordinary mortals. Quite similar in fact, and equally judgmental, – on smoking, drinking, eating, lifestyle, how things work, the nature of Nature, humans, and our influence on climate that will be affecting future generations. The difference is that God, then, didn’t generate revenue for himself on the back of his commandment.
3 “You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain.”
Not sure what this means…so I’ll take this Best Answer (below)..sounds good enough to me.
To use God’s name to justify or legitimate an action that is not justified or legitimated by God. For an example making war on another country and claiming it is “God’s will”. Claiming God said something that he didn’t. Using God to place a curse. Using God’s name to elevate your own position. These are examples of blasphemy. Saying words such as “Oh my God” is an exclamation not a blasphemy.”
Well, thank God for that.
4 “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labour and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.” Well from now on I start to approve….Good idea for communities to have a day off to refresh themselves – one day, altogether, all at once – a synchronized holiday – very healing to those of us who feel as if we, ourselves, had laboured for six days in our personal weekly universe. One day a week should be a holiday just like the old days. Everyone could live for one day without shopping. It can be done – I remember!
5 “Honour your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the Lord your God is giving you.”
Imagine happy families looking after their old people, even honouring them. At my age I think that’s a good idea.
6 “You shall not murder.”
Excellent idea – who could argue this?
7 “You shall not commit adultery.”  
Another good idea – cuts out a lot of relationship complications.
8 “You shall not steal.” 
A very good idea
9 “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbour.”
Absolutely necessary.
10 “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, nor his male servant, nor his female servant, nor his ox, nor his donkey, nor anything that is your neighbor’s.”  
Good ancillary to prevent 6, 7 8, and 9 and should apply to The Government Receivers of Tax Revenues of every country!
One Commandment zipped in Humanist form, is not a bad idea either – “Treat other people how you would like to be treated yourself” AKA Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” 

Can’t get better than that! 

What the hell has happened?

To go back to the problem of smokers in society.
We are undergoing a behaviour eradication putsch – literally – the aim of the Anti Smoking Industry is to make sure the smoking habit of smokers is eradicated – desisted, deaded – made kaput. Its war is against the 2O% to 30% of the population who smoke – in the west. And aimed at the rest of the world too. It’s a world-wide onslaught in the name of health for the masses, the ignorant, and those who have fallen into the clutches of the evil Tobacco Giants – fought on our behalf! All kinds of Drug Companies are making an excellent profit on the back of this orchestrated behaviour modification. And politics has jumped on the prohibition wagon too.
Smoking has been a human habit since 5000 BC and more in one form or another…and I know whilst I lived in Africa, the men (and women) smoked without the help of any Tobacco Company – they smoked Dagga which is a weed occurring everywhere and very easy to grow – cannabis in it’s natural form without the help of genetic alteration, in existence since 2000 BC. I regularly had to bail our handyman out of prison, because of his “evil” habit – he was a Rastafarian. And the police could never understand my ire.
Smoking world-wide happens in such a variety of customs and in such ingenious ways that the people who practice smoking take it as a perfectly normal thing to do. Different cultures practise different forms of smoking – you could take your pick.. in pipes, rolled tubes, one hits, through water, through inhaling smoke over the burning weed, for ceremonies, for celebrations, for death, for altered states of consciousness – or just for plain pleasure.
The grim determination of the Anti Smoking Industry to turn us away from smoking only really took a grip when they were able to demonise Second Hand Smoke. And they did it through dishonesty. I was sitting in a restaurant, in a smoking area inside, just off the pavement – (when those were allowed) – and a group of happily chatting women, walking up the road alongside exhaust belching buses and lorries, suddenly swung in through the restaurant doors to make their way to a table. Suddenly, the laughter went, and one woman clamped her handkerchief over her nose to protect herself from the fatal smoke issuing from my tiny hand-rolled cigarettelet. The shocking part of it was, I saw real fear in her eyes! FEAR! She believed my smoke was harming her!
And there it is – it’s the fear that has been generated into ordinary people by the “scientific” studies that PROVE second hand smoke is fatal to people. Smoking has been proved to cause almost every known disease and second hand smoke has been proved to be even worse because smokers’ lungs have made it even more deadly than the smoke smokers inhale. It’s even fatal out of doors. Smokers are not in an altered state of consciousness, but perfectly rational people – not dangerous or crazed.
The way in which small bureaucrats have climbed onto the bandwagon of smoker persecution, by making smoking “illegal” in open air places, like station platforms, shows how keen they are to earn brownie points amongst the terrified non-smoking population. God help us now that little important councillors have been given the same powers. How CAN it be dangerous to others to smoke out of doors? I was hoping UK was going to remain one of the clearer thinking countries – but power has been given away to the little bureaucrats.

Introducing the cheeldren! This is turning out a better weapon than SHS. Now children and young people mustn’t see anyone smoking! So  tobacco products are hidden behind secret doors in shops. And just to make sure people see traumatising illness porn pictures, they might also be in “plain” packaging in the UK as they are going to be in Australia.  Well – what an exciting naughtiness awaits our cheeeldren when they try out this forbidden fruit for themselves! Like having sex – but not – they know all about sex, it’s lost its secret mystery – just copulation really. Innit? So smoking might be better than sex – I’ll bet on it! They could collect the most physically violent illness porn pictures and swap with their friends for whole sets.They could take the dare.

This is a really tragic episode in our human history – the attempted eradication of the smoking habit in humans.I think it will be futile.
Yet, it has particularly emotionally injured people of my age – sixty plus – because we grew up when smoking was perfectly normal – most people did it. In my group no one had deformed babies through our smoking in pregnancy, our children suffered no allergies from our smoking in our homes – asthma and allergies were a rare thing that we read about in the paper, everyone seemed well, vital and optimistic for the future – life was exciting – the roaring sixties. And, strangely, those same people are burdening the population because we aint dead! Is that weird or what?
Perhaps, I have an extra rosy memory of that time, the music, the belief that we could change the world for the better, the “pill” and better circumstances for women, for gays, for black people, for everyone – and for health, from the wonderful new antibiotics which could cure almost anything at all. And we envisioned world peace. Wow. What an exciting world!
What the hell has happened?