Saturday, November 21, 2015

Deny deny

Outrage one, breast cancer in women mostly working in the television and radio newsroom at ABC Queensland's headquarters in Toowong. Between 1994 and 2006 when the place was shut down, 16 women developed breast cancer and 12 more had non cancerous breast abnormalities. These were predominantly young and healthy women without any family history of breast cancer. An inquiry failed to find any scientific cause for the cluster. As soon as there seemed to more cases than a co-incidence, action should have been taken and women moved away from the site. As men can also develop breast cancer, I don't see why they should have stayed there either.

Outrage two, the Country Fire Authority Training College at Fiskville in Victoria. Another cancer cluster, men this time, in my opinion succumbing to the effects of all the chemicals that had been used over the years. The first government commissioned inquiry found that "...there's no good reason to conclude that they (I assume the chemicals) pose any significant risk to anyone on the site at present."

If there is any doubt when a cancer cluster appear, such locations should be shut down and then investigated. Inquiries that don't find a scientific reason doesn't mean that there isn't one. We may be smart creatures, but we don't know everything. In both cases in the early days, governments and their departments just denied in spite of the bleeding obvious.

No pictures in this post. You don't want to see a mastectomy photo or a removed testes photo.

22 comments:

  1. Indeed when such appears there should be a lot more research and investigation into it. Greetings to you.

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    1. Blogoratti, while that is underway, move the people away.

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  2. Absolutely Andrew. Why wait for years until they eventually find a scientific reason for the cluster?

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    1. Marie, and people who suffered unnecessarily should be compensated.

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  3. My cynical nature suspects there is a financial reason for the rush to deny. Which would also preclude proper investigation. Hiss and spit.

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  4. Follow the money trail, as EC said.

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    1. You can never be too cynical when money is involved Jac.

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  5. Without sounding too paranoid, I think the chances of insurance companies admitting to environmental dangers are remote. I believe the men struggled for decades to receive cancer insurance from the nuclear testing at Maralinga in the late 1950s.

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    1. Hels, you are right. At best a ex gratia payment with no fault admitted.

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  6. As a child no one ever died of cancer or maybe not so much was known about it then and most people just died of old age, they just went to sleep and never woke up or that's what I was told but no one much had life insurance so it wasn't a problem we didn't need reasons you were dead or alive one or the other.
    Merle.........

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    1. Merle, wasn't it more that people didn't talk openly about the big C?

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  7. This reminds me of those movies, Erin Brockovich (Juia Roberts) and A Civil Action (John Travolta), both about lawyers who take on large companies and sue them on behalf of innocent victims who have developed cancers because of shady practices by the businesses.

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    1. River, I have seen the first one. It was chilling but not surprising.

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    2. The second is just as good, John Travolta is the lawyer.

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  8. Oops! That's Julia not Juia.

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  9. I knew of these two stories/lives in ruin because of whatever it is causing these two cancers .
    Dreadful and weird. Something should be done that is concrete...everyone one thinks they are relatively safe at work, but these people weren't..

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    1. Margaret, being safe at work is a very basic right now in Australian work places.

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  10. You have to wonder how some CEO's sleep at night!

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    1. Grace, some don't. They just lie there scheming.

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  11. Cancer clusters offer the greatest hope of finding direct link causes for cancer and should be totally investigated, not covered up as is oft the case out of fear, of litigation or facing responsibility.

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    1. Strayer, I seem to recall there was some concern about the chemicals used in fracking in the US and the effect of them on people near by.

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