Specialising in the human experience of Living with prostate cancer – warts and all

In My Lifetime – a Sociatal Review of my 70 Years

with 2 comments

Born at the end of WWII, I grew up learning the horrors of war …  the conscription of our young men to be knowingly sent to their death, the atrocities and torture by the Japanese, the absolute wasting of human life and the subsequent war crimes trials to bring German Nazi officers to justice – and we were disgusted.

Now, at 70, I once again see the horrors of war.  We see the death of more civilians than military personnel and the torture of suspected “terrorists” through the abolition of the Geneva Convention.  This time however, we are committing the atrocities ourselves after declaring war on Iraq and Afghanistan – and we are disgusted once again.

A message to our young mums and their daughters:  NEVER let the government bring in conscription.  It is your sons life at stake.  The mere mention of conscription must bring out the protester in you.

The 1950’s was a good time.  Without the financial burden of war, and a reduced labour force due to the death of so many soldiers, jobs were easy to get and the money was good securing the future of a whole generation of young people setting out in life.  With the majority of men at war overseas, our women had developed a more cooperative society where we all looked out for our friends and neighbours.

Unlike today where we often never meet those living next door, we knew everyone in the neighbourhood.  It was a time of peace and inclusion and it was good.

We didn’t call them refugees or asylum seekers but we had migrant camps throughout Australia to resettle Europeans displaced by the war.  We needed them to supplement our workforce just like the mining industry today needs overseas “skilled workers”.  With sarcasm, we called them Wogs, Poms, Bolts and I-ties. So we were educated to call them “New Australians” as that was more inclusive and acceptable in nice circles.  They even showed us their football game called Soccer.  We married their women – as they did ours.

We needed the workforce so their relocation was managed with ship loads of WWII refugees arriving on a scheduled basis.  A bit different than the mess we have today.

Today, after abolishing the White Australia Policy which served us well for half a century, we have multiculturalism .  My problem with this is that we are accepting too many from mono-cultures who want to live by their own cultural norms rather than those of Australia.

Came the 1960’s and the 1970’s when my generation was raising families.  I remember when I set out on married life with our first home, my father quipped, “You young ones want everything when you get married”.  In his time, TV’s and white goods were not yet available but, through his good fortune, we had been spoiled with the creature comforts he had taken all his life to acquire.  Of course we wanted them but the age of entitlement was not yet with us so we worked to get these benefits.

In 1965, houses were 12 squares.  A big one was 14 squares.  Compare that with today’s 40 or 50 squares and you can see how why young ones require such huge mortgages.  Back then, our mortgage was $7,500 on a $10,000 property and it was all we could do to pay it off.  I’m sure we lived in a better time.

In the 1980’s, the war cry became, “Greed is Good” and business became less ethical as witnessed by the likes of Alan Bond.  The workforce came under threat where those of us around 50 reached our “Use By Date” and we were tipped out never to be young enough to rehire or retire.  There was no consideration for the company or Industry knowledge that we had. Money replaced God and workers became consumables.  That is why we find so many people – with or without the business or ethical skills to succeed – going into startup businesses for themselaves.

In the 1990’s. I was one of those with a corrosion protection process known as “Metalising” that galvanised structures on site.  It was so good that it attracted the attention of the big boys who gradually took the business away.  Whilst it kept us going for 10 years, it lasted into my retirement on an acreage at Whitfield in N.E.Victoria for the next 10 years.

And then in 2008, I was diagnosed with PCa and my whole world was challenged.  It was time to review all aspects of my life from my belief systems, the relationships with family and friends as well as an analysis of my own behavior.

The results of those analyses can be found on this blog site.  It has been of the greatest help in getting my mind around the disease, my past life and how I face the end of my life.  I can only hope my readers get some benefit from my musings.


Written by Greg Naylor

29 September 2012 at 12:00 am

2 Responses

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  1. This post above was written in the last few weeks before Greg passed away earlier this week. Even after his passing we have more to discover about his thoughts on life. He has left a few more unpublished posts which will appear in the following weeks.

    We laid him to rest yesterday in a beautiful ceremony at Euroa, and burial at Whitfield. I will post more about this in the next few days.

    David Naylor

    29 September 2012 at 12:22 pm

  2. Great read David. I’m really glad I got to meet your dad and see the twinkle in his eye. You are so like him in many ways, and I see where you get your well-crafted dry wit from.

    Julia Peddie

    2 October 2012 at 7:42 pm

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