The past is the future – oh, joy!

I have zero interest in fashion (my preferred look being “backpacker” – the Sierra Club kind, not the Oz-inspired, gap-year variety, which swiped the name), and as long as my clothes keep me covered, warm and dry, I’m happy.

My eye, though, was drawn to Continue reading

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Lynn Gildersdale…

Kay Gilderdale has walked free from court, at the conclusion of her trial for assisting in the suicide of her daughter, ME sufferer Lynn, which saw the Director of Public Prosecutions, Keir Starmer, personally lambasted by High Court Judge Richard Brown for pursuing a case utterly without merit.

And so he should – getting a conviction is the CPS’s primary consideration – the validity of a case, and plain, old-fashioned common sense, come a long way behind.

Note: ME is CFS in the US.

Writing as someone who Continue reading

Free prescription cock-up is political suicide…

Well, if Gordon Brown ever thought he had a chance in the next general election, he’s just committed political suicide by pissing off 15,000,000 chronically sick people.

Why? Because he promised to extend the range of conditions which qualify for free prescriptions – itself a deeply flawed idea – and he has now reneged on that offer.

I say deeply flawed because Continue reading

David Cameron – a disgrace to humanity?

Yes, absolutely, the man really is a disgrace to humanity – yesterday he was the only person trying to make political capital on the back of the horror that was the Edlington trial. People just don’t come any more despicable.

“Broken Britain**” my arse – the fault lies with Continue reading

The end of the book shop?

In a comment to this Times article about the failure of bookstores in general, and Waterstone’s in particular, one person said:-

It is the failure of literacy and the death of imagination that underlies the problem.

And, you know, I couldn’t agree more – I worked as an adult literacy tutor in the mid 80s, and  the situation was appalling; it’s certainly not got any better since then.

Indeed, as a reasonably successful blogger I’m horrified at the inability of so many of my fellow-bloggers to Continue reading

Carrots and chaos…

This article, in the Guardian, discussing the problems of keeping Britain supplied with carrots and other veg during the recent, relatively brief, cold snap, contains this gem “There’s not as much slack in the system as there used to be, especially from Scotland, because the distances things have to travel are so big.

My italics.

This, bear in mind, is on a relatively small island, where the extremes – Land’s End and John O’Groats – have been shown to be within walking distance of each other many times. It is not, for example, France or Spain, the continental USA or, perhaps Russia – countries where distances are truly “big” – it’s an island that is just 800 and some miles long at the extremes.

The distances, then, are Continue reading

Is Salbutamol dangerous?

An item from my search-engine slush-pile “Salbutamol dangerous”.

Assuming there’s a missing question mark, then no, it isn’t. Most people use the aerosol inhaler, and in this form it’s almost impossible to o-d on the stuff (respiratory consultant’s opinion, not mine). Not totally, but you have to make a serious and deliberate attempt to harm yourself for it to actually o-d..

I’ve used Salbutamol (Ventolin), for over 40 years, and for the first half of that period, I was a very Continue reading

Depression in COPD…

Depression, in chronic illness like COPD is understandable. However, what a lot of people don’t know is that it can be caused by their medication. (But – whatever you do – don’t stop taking it!)

Theophylline, and its derivatives, like Aminophylline (Phyllocontin Continus), can cause vitamin B6 deficiency.

B6 helps moderate the function of Continue reading