from Wayward Wizard by Mary Kay McComas
"Brave men and foolish young boys die by their oath for nothing more than what is simply repeated acts of prejudice in God's name. It is wrong."
"Love and geeks make the world go around. Without one or the other it would come to a full stop."
"Sometimes people can say more with the shine in their eyes than with all the words in a dictionary."
"...because he was young and impatient and unaware that moments once lost are gone forever."
Today's Thoughts: focus on an article torn from last Sunday's newspaper, which was also featured on the Today Tonight show on Monday.
I'm going to print the entire article here, it's a fairly long one, but really tears at my heart strings.
Bold print is mine.
"Broken hill is dying, as slowly and surely as it's drying.
That's the diagnosis from Dr Ramu Nachiappan, the town's GP of 25 years. The legendary old mining town and birthplace of BHP- Broken Hill Propriety- has been drained of its water supply by a deadly treble: too much water taken from the Darling River by cotton farmers to the north, too much sent to the south to flush the River Murray, and then a crippling drought.
"The river is drying up, we don't get enough coming down from the north, and each time they empty the lakes it puts the town in this predicament," Dr Nachiappan said.
"It's our lifeblood and they are letting it out."
By August, the town - 500km north east of Adelaide - will be dry and even the little water it has, which is being drained from what's left of the Menindee Lakes, is hard, salty and treated within an inch of its life. It's *within acceptable drinking water guidelines*, but something is going on.
Three weeks ago, mothers such as Tina Grillett started posting pictures online of their children's rashes.
"He came out of the shower and had like a chemical burn; it's the hardness of the water," Mrs Grillett , 45, said.
She wasn't alone. Dr Nachiappan confirmed many of the town's children suffer from skin irritations.
"I do believe that the kids' skin conditions are exacerbated by the current town water. I am seeing kids and adults with more skin problems than I have in the past few years related to skin irritation, presumably by local water," he said.
"Psychologically it is starting to affect us. **This town is slowly being killed.** School teachers, lawyers, they won't come here, and Broken Hill will die, people have already started to move away."
At Menindee Lakes, the system that used to hold more water than Sydney Harbor was drained in 2013 to flush the River Murray mouth. In the small township of Menindee, locals like Karen Page buy in water because there is a red alert for toxic blue green algae.
"We usually draw water but we can't at the moment, it's too contaminated with blue green algae and salt and our treatment plant (at Menindee) is not capable of treating the water, so we have water trucked in," she said. John Brereton delivers potable water to the residents who once relied on the river.
"That water will kill you, I don't know what's in it but animals are dying and everyone has rashes," Mr Brereton said. "A man was shifting his water pump in the river the other day and he broke out in sores."
The newly formed Broken Hill Darling River Action Group points the finger at state and federal authorities who ***manage*** various parts of the Darling River system and the Murray-Darling Basin Plan.
Action group secretary Darryn Clifton said they were investigating the possibility of a class action against the state government. "It's a man-made drought, we've been pushed into Third World standards, the water is disgusting, it affects the community, people refuse to bathe in it or drink it," he said.
Broken Hill Mayor Wincen Cuy said the Murray Darling Basin Authority let out "an exorbitant amount of water" from Lake Menindee in2013, which had contributed to water restrictions, but the town had water to last until April 2017 before switching to bore water.
"The water is an issue and rightly so but ****we do have a supply until April 2017**** and the NSW Government is spending $500 million for a solution in the long term," Cr Cuy said.
The state government announced a *****$500 million plan to secure a permanent water source***** for Broken Hill, which Mr Clifton says will force the town onto bore water. Water NSW has confirmed it is testing 11 production bores in the region."
*perhaps someone should review the guidelines, clearly the water is NOT drinkable
**I've jokingly (maybe) said in the past, that I believe those gubmint boffins are trying to kill off/shut down my state. On top of the highest utilities prices, highest fines for misdemeanors etc, this is just one more thing that reinforces my belief.
****what good is that supply when people can't drink it; can't bathe in it; animals are dying from drinking it!
***** is this a full 100% forever-until-finished commitment? Or just until they suddenly need the money elsewhere and leave Broken hill in the lurch again?
Let's get back to something I've mentioned before; here and in comments on other blogs.
Dams and pipelines.
South Australia and Western Australia, perhaps other states too, have a system of large pipelines running across them, bringing water from one area that has plenty, to another area that needs it.
Many years ago, my brother, R, worked for SA Water helping to construct sections of this pipeline in SA.
Why can't we do this again?
I have read, somewhere, a few years ago, that Queensland has enough annual rainfall to be able to supply the entire continent of Australia.
Year after year, Queensland suffers crippling floods in built up areas, people's homes and businesses are damaged.
Why not take this idea from the past and begin (now) constructing dams to hold much of this flood water (construction job opportunities here); construct pipelines from these dams (more construction job opportunities) to other dams built in the arid states/areas of our country (even more construction job opportunities here) and then on to less populated inland areas to enable them to grow small towns, take communities to the interior.
Build homes and schools for them (again, more jobs there for the currently unemployed thousands).
I know this is a long, long, long, term solution and will cost so much more than the bandaid measures our governments prefer, but how much more costly would it be if it was put off until, say, 2050?
Why not start now and save this country?
Why can't the governments stop their childish bickering over who should be doing/paying for every damn thing and focus on the true needs of this wonderful country?
Water would be a good start.