I think what Henry George wrote in his book “Progress and Poverty” more than one hundred years ago still applies very much to our society today. What do you think, are changes in the distribution of wealth and power possible without major upheavals?
The following is Chapter 42 of “Progress and Poverty” by Henry George, saying How Modern Civilization May Decline:
OUR CONCLUSIONS about the law of human progress agree completely with our previous conclusions about the laws of political economy. They also show that making land common property — by taxing its value — would give an enormous boost to civilization. Furthermore, unless we do so, we will regress.
Every previous civilization has been destroyed by the unequal distribution of wealth and power. I have traced this tendency to its cause — and provided a simple way to remove it. I will now show how, if this is not done…
I could not resist publishing this older blog once more. It certainly does bring back memories!
This pictures was taken in Düsseldorf, Germany, in a park called ‘Hofgarten’, on 17th June 1958. Gaby was not quite nine months yet at the time.
This pictures was taken by Uta’s Mum on her balcony in Berlin in August 1958. Gaby was nearly one year old. We were for a visit in Berlin at the time.
This pictures was taken near Fairy Meadow Beach, New South Wales, Australia, in June 1960.
This is where the pioneer family ended up in Oak Flats, NSW, Australia, which was ‘the sticks’ at the time. This picture was taken on the 28th August 1960 which was Gaby’s birthday. We were building a garage at the time. One year later the children were stricken by polio; as it turned out, Gaby very severely.
I wrote the above in January 2013. I was looking for a photo from our Berlin visit in August 1958 and found one in this blog. I was pregnant at the time. In December our daughter Monika was born in Düsseldorf where we had one room in my father’s apartment. We thought being given the opportunity to go to Australia as migrants was the best thing that could have happened to us.
11 Responses to “The “Pioneer Family””
January 23, 2013 at 4:47 pm Edit #
The beginning in Australia was tough and sometimes we felt like a “pioneer family”.. On the beach picture you can clearly see the Fairy Meadow Hostel were we lived for a while.
January 23, 2013 at 5:18 pm Edit #
You’re right, Peter, the beach was only a few steps away from the hostel. I thought it was great to have the beach so close. The picture you refer to was taken in June, in the middle of the Australian winter!
Robert M. WeissR
January 25, 2013 at 8:41 am Edit #
Great archival type photos, which reminds me it’s time to straighten up our family photos.
January 25, 2013 at 11:12 am Edit #
Thanks for commenting, Robert. I read your profile, which is very interesting. Do you do any writing? You seem to be a very contemplative person. If you’re writing, I’d like to hear more about it.
January 26, 2013 at 12:00 pm Edit #
I love the old photos. Your family was beautiful. My youngest sister Gerry had polio when she was two years old. Fortunately she had no lingering effects, and recovered completely. I was ten at the time. I remember how scared we all were.
January 26, 2013 at 6:01 pm Edit #
Hi, Pam. We always love to look at all our old photos. Gaby was severely effected, She became a quadriplegic and needed an iron lung.
Monika had some lingering effects in one of her legs and Martin recovered completely. It was a very scary time for us when all three children suffered from the disease.
January 27, 2013 at 2:44 am Edit #
I can’t even imagine how terrified you and Peter must have been with all three children seriously ill at the same. My middle daughter is a public health lawyer. She has asked me lots of questions about the polio epidemics. I’ll tell her about your family’s story. Thanks for sharing it. Pat
Three Well Beings
January 26, 2013 at 4:56 pm Edit #
I really enjoyed seeing family photos, Uta. From what you’re sharing, the children were very young when they contracted polio. I cannot imagine how difficult that must have been! I do remember when that disease frightened families and changed lives forever!
January 26, 2013 at 6:07 pm Edit #
That’s right, Debra, they all contracted polio. Martin was 1, Monika 2 and Gaby was struck down with the disease on her fourth birthday. No vaccinations were available at the time. A bit later oral vaccinations were introduced. I think this stopped the spread of polio in Australia.
Three Well Beings
January 26, 2013 at 6:50 pm Edit #
I really can’t imagine, Uta! As a mom, this must have been devastating. They were just babies. I’m a little awed you can even talk about it. oxo
January 26, 2013 at 8:45 pm Edit #
It was a very emotional time for Peter too. All three children were admitted to Wollongong Hospital. Gaby went on to Intensive Care at Prince Henry Hospital in Sydney where she was in a coma. According to the specialist there was not much chance of her surviving. We had gone in the ambulance with her and stayed with her through the night. Early in the morning we went back to Wollongong on the milk-train. That morning after a lot of weeping we went to see Monika and Martin in Wollongong Hospital. Martin Baby soon became the darling of the nurses. He looked so cute. When we saw him he started throwing all the toys out of his cot the nurses had put in there for him. Monika was more sick than Martin and absolutely quiet. A few days later Martin was allowed to go back home. We were overwhelmed when we had him back home. Monika had to stay in hospital a bit longer. Once she was home she was referred to a specialist who treated her leg. Some muscles were weakened because of polio. She had to wear special boots and a splint on her left leg which she hated!
Last Friday was the 18th of January 2019. Facebook reminded Peter that six years ago was an extremely hot day and this was the day of Nell’s funeral. Apparently we had 47C on that day. Is that possible? I think this year our highest temperature so far was ‘only’ 37C.
It seems we didn’t take many pictures in January. There aren’t any pictures from our visit with friends and the friends visiting us. But there are a few picture from the funeral of one of our friends, also a few pictures how things in the garden have grown.
One of the church windows. It was an extremely hot day. Still a lot of people turned up for the Mass.
Peter always works hard to keep down the tree growth around our house.
This picture is taken from our front door.
It seems this elephant is guarding our front door.
Peter and I are spending this weekend at home in Dapto. It is now already Sunday afternoon. It feels to me that yesterday and today were very normal days for us. Having done some shopping on Friday, we had plenty of food in the house. Since the great heat had left us, we felt like doing a bit more cooking over the weekend. On Saturday we also spent a bit of time doing some cleaning of the house. Peter did the vaccuming. I soon got tired of wiping the floor. I did get very, very tired and soon rested a bit, and then rested a bit more. Peter and I played some Rummicub Games. We also watched some great programs on RBB (Rundfunk Berlin Brandenburg). Yes, Peter has no problem getting these programs in from far, far away. This is really amazing technic!
After several nights when the room temperature did not go below 27C, last night the room temperature had gone down to 24C, and this felt really cool to us. The outside temperature went even further down during the night. This morning when we woke up, it was only 22C outside, inside it was still 24C despite our open window. Anyhow, we felt really refreshed and went for our usual morning walk, had our usual Sunday breakfast with soft boiled eggs, watched on TV the news (including a speech by President Trump!) and then at 9 am the news from Germany. After the German news we had a very pleasant morning tea. Before having to start cooking lunch, I had a bit over an hour left. I felt somehow quite energetic. I thought this was maybe a good time to spend the hour to investigate what sort of writing needed to be sorted out. So I took time out to look through a box of old stuff I had not been looking at for quite some time. It mostly contained papers from the early 2000s. But there was also some writing from August 1957. I was in hospital at the time, having delivered our first born child on the 28th of August 1957. In the hospital I seem to have had plenty of time for writing, since the hours when I was allowed to see my precious baby were few and far between. For some reason they seem to have thought that babies were best kept in the nursery under the care of the sisters. Only for a few very restricted times were the babies be brought to their mothers for breast feeding.
I said that on Saturday, after a bit of cleaning in the morning, I soon felt very, very tired. I had acually planned on visiting a couple of neighbouring properties that were open for inspection yesterdy at certain times during the morning and early afternoon. There are two villas that are for sale for about half a million Dollars each, and they belong to our complex of ten villas. I had been interested in finding out how well these properties had been renovated as compared to our villa that we have lived in for nearly 25 years now. I feel that our poor house has not been sufficiently renovated over the years. Let’s just say it looks ‘well lived in’. Well, yesterday was the first time that an open house was advertised. Most likely there are going to be other open days before suitable buyers are being found. So maybe next time I’ll feel up to it to have a look. After all, these houses are only a few steps from our house.
What am I?” is a short film realized by the winner of the first award at Germanwatch’s new script competition. Producers were asked to hand in script ideas along the lines of an ongoing NGO project called “Dialogue on Transformation”. The well-known guessing game “What am I?” is played by four friends all representing one of the multiple crises which could challenge the social-ecological equilibrium on earth: food crisis, climate crisis, depleting fossil fuel reserves and financial speculations. Soon, the four friends guess the roles they are representing – and the first easy going atmosphere darkens. They agree on a second round of the game – with changed signs: This time, they want to take positive solutions as their roles, and all of them unknowingly choose the same term: The Great Transformation. Script by Ben Toussaint Produced and directed by Boris Laaser More information on the issues mentioned above on http://www.germanwatch.org or http://www.dialogue-on-transformation.org