Hiroshima

Nuke Puke Disposal Plan

Fukushima-Simpsongc2Off the keyboard of RE

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Published on the Doomstead Diner on October 11, 2015

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Amongst the numerous other problems we have with Climate Change, Population Overshoot and Geopolitical Conflict, one of the main worries these days amongst KollapsniksTM is the residue of the Nuclear Power Industry which grew up in the aftermath of WWII, when a few brilliant scientists applied the ideas Albert Einstein had about the equivalence of Matter and Energy, most remembered by the famous equation E=mc2.  What that tells you is that the amount of Energy contained in a bit of "matter" (the stuff around you) is equal to that amount multiplied by the Speed of Light SQUARED. For the mathematically challenged, "squaring" means multiplying a number by itself. The speed of light by itself is pretty darn fast, so square it and you get a REALLY big number!  Lots of energy contained in Matter, if of course you can convert the matter to energy, and figuring out how to do that was not in Einstein's Department.  Einstein was a Mathematician and Theoretical Physicist, not an Engineer.

However, this potential source of Energy and POWER was pretty seductive, particularly in a big time WAR like WWII, where if you could harness said energy, you could make a REALLY BIG BOMB, and wipe out entire cities with it.  The RACE WAS ON between the scientists on either side of the Pond as to who could figure out how to do this first!

The Krauts put together their team…

German Experimental Pile - Haigerloch - April 1945.jpgThe German nuclear weapon project (German: Uranprojekt; informally known as the Uranverein; English: Uranium Society or Uranium Club), was a clandestine scientific effort led by Germany to develop and produce nuclear weapons during World War II. This program started in April 1939, just months after the discovery of nuclear fission in December 1938, but ended only months later due to the German invasion of Poland, after many notable physicists were drafted into the Wehrmacht.

A second effort began under the administrative purview of the Wehrmacht's Heereswaffenamt on 1 September 1939, the day of the Invasion of Poland. The program eventually expanded into three main efforts: the Uranmaschine (nuclear reactor), uranium and heavy water production, and uranium isotope separation. Eventually it was assessed that nuclear fission would not contribute significantly to ending the war, and in January 1942, the Heereswaffenamt turned the program over to the Reich Research Council (Reichsforschungsrat) while continuing to fund the program. The program was split up among nine major institutes where the directors dominated the research and set their own objectives. Subsequently, the number of scientists working on applied nuclear fission began to diminish, with many applying their talents to more pressing war-time demands.

The most influential people in the Uranverein were Kurt Diebner, Abraham Esau, Walther Gerlach, and Erich Schumann; Schumann was one of the most powerful and influential physicists in Germany. Diebner, throughout the life of the nuclear weapon project, had more control over nuclear fission research than did Walther Bothe, Klaus Clusius, Otto Hahn, Paul Harteck, or Werner Heisenberg. Abraham Esau was appointed as Hermann Göring's plenipotentiary for nuclear physics research in December 1942; Walther Gerlach succeeded him in December 1943

The Amurkans put together their team…

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-30qtjDmvmJA/U4p002ATb_I/AAAAAAAARmw/crgtMMiDzVo/s1600/J-Robert-Oppenheimer.destroyer-of-worlds.meme.stevepiper.net.jpgIn August 1939, prominent physicists Leó Szilárd and Eugene Wigner drafted the Einstein–Szilárd letter, which warned of the potential development of "extremely powerful bombs of a new type". It urged the United States to take steps to acquire stockpiles of uranium ore and accelerate the research of Enrico Fermi and others into nuclear chain reactions. They had it signed by Albert Einstein and delivered to President Franklin D. Roosevelt. Roosevelt called on Lyman Briggs of the National Bureau of Standards to head the Advisory Committee on Uranium to investigate the issues raised by the letter. Briggs held a meeting on 21 October 1939, which was attended by Szilárd, Wigner and Edward Teller. The committee reported back to Roosevelt in November that uranium "would provide a possible source of bombs with a destructiveness vastly greater than anything now known."[2]

Briggs proposed that the National Defense Research Committee (NDRC) spend $167,000 on research into uranium, particularly the uranium-235 isotope, and the recently discovered plutonium.[3] On 28 June 1941, Roosevelt signed Executive Order 8807, which created the Office of Scientific Research and Development (OSRD),[4] with Vannevar Bush as its director. The office was empowered to engage in large engineering projects in addition to research.[3] The NDRC Committee on Uranium became the S-1 Uranium Committee of the OSRD; the word "uranium" was soon dropped for security reasons.[5]

In Britain, Otto Frisch and Rudolf Peierls at the University of Birmingham had made a breakthrough investigating the critical mass of uranium-235 in June 1939.[6] Their calculations indicated that it was within an order of magnitude of 10 kilograms (22 lb), which was small enough to be carried by a bomber of the day.[7] Their March 1940 Frisch–Peierls memorandum initiated the British atomic bomb project and its Maud Committee,[8] which unanimously recommended pursuing the development of an atomic bomb.[7] One of its members, the Australian physicist Mark Oliphant, flew to the United States in late August 1941 and discovered that data provided by the Maud Committee had not reached key American physicists. Oliphant then set out to find out why the committee's findings were apparently being ignored. He met with the Uranium Committee, and visited Berkeley, California, where he spoke persuasively to Ernest O. Lawrence. Lawrence was sufficiently impressed to commence his own research into uranium. He in turn spoke to James B. Conant, Arthur H. Compton and George B. Pegram. Oliphant's mission was therefore a success; key American physicists were now aware of the potential power of an atomic bomb.[9][10]

At a meeting between President Roosevelt, Vannevar Bush, and Vice President Henry A. Wallace on 9 October 1941, the President approved the atomic program. To control it, he created a Top Policy Group consisting of himself—although he never attended a meeting—Wallace, Bush, Conant, Secretary of War Henry L. Stimson, and the Chief of Staff of the Army, General George C. Marshall. Roosevelt chose the Army to run the project rather than the Navy, as the Army had the most experience with management of large-scale construction projects. He also agreed to coordinate the effort with that of the British, and on 11 October he sent a message to Prime Minister Winston Churchill, suggesting that they correspond on atomic matters.[11]

As we all know now, the Amurkan Scientists beat the Kraut Scientists in this Horserace, and these were the results at Hiroshima and Nagasaki:

http://www.hiroshima-remembered.com/photos/hiroshima/images/HR02.jpg

http://666moon.webs.com/Hiroshima_victim1.jpg

Talk about TERRORISM!  Beheading a few Journalists is NOTHING compared to this!  You got entire countries quaking in their boots if they won't Kowtow to you and accept your Dollar as World Reserve Currency!

At the point in the war these two Weapons of Mass Destruction were dropped, the Nipponese were already FINISHED.  They were beaten back to their own islands, their fleet had been destroyed in the Battle of Midway.  They could simply have been embargoed and left to starve, but nooooo… a demonstration of POWER was necessary to make to the rest of the world (the Ruskies in particular) aware that we were mean sons of bitches, and don't fuck with us or we will incinerate you in a heartbeat.

http://d35brb9zkkbdsd.cloudfront.net/wp-content/uploads/2013/10/China-Pollution.JPEG-0bfec-555x370.jpgBad as all that was, it may turn out that the worst of the Nuke Puke curse brought on by the insatiable appetite for POWER in the species Homo Sap will not come from the Wartime use of Nukes as Bombs, but from the Peacetime use developed after the War to generate Electric Power for the growing energy consumptive society.

Nuke Puke Power Plants sprung up like mushrooms in the aftermath of WWII, and now there are something like 400 of them sprinkled around the Globe, mainly in the FSoA and Europe, but quite a few other places too. The Chinese want to build still MORE of them to boot!  Even though the coal is coming dirt cheap these days, they would like to be able to breathe the air in Beijing without having to wear an Activated Charcoal Filter mask all the time, but of course still keeping the lights on and juice for the Factories to produce toys to be sold at Low, Low Prices Every Day at Walmart.  Who will have working money to BUY those toys also remains an open question these days.

http://40.media.tumblr.com/3a13cc00640eb012b081030ea890acd2/tumblr_n84i3wzu4R1rasnq9o1_1280.png

Global Nuclear Power Plant Distribution

As you can see by the map above here, the worst Bad Newz on Nukes is on the eastern side of the Mississipi River in the FSoA, in Europe and in Japan.  The Chinese will catch up here if they can, but chances are things will go south before they have opportunity to build too many of them.  Also it should be noted that this does NOT include all the Nuke Puke reactors aboard Aircraft Carriers, Submarines and in various research facilities in Universities around the globe.

The BIG PROBLEM nobody ever came up with a real good solution for was what to do with the SPENT FUEL from these reactors.  NOBODY wanted Nuke Puke in their backyard, the NIMBY problem.  For a while the Salt Mines in Yucca Mountain were proposed as a dumping ground for Nuke Puke, but after a few $Billion$ were spent developing this White Elephant, this idea got shelved.

The Yucca Mountain Nuclear Waste Repository, as designated by the Nuclear Waste Policy Act amendments of 1987, is to be a deep geological repository storage facility for spent nuclear fuel and other high level radioactive waste. It is located on federal land adjacent to the Nevada Test Site in Nye County, Nevada, about 80 mi (130 km) northwest of the Las Vegas Valley. The proposed repository is within Yucca Mountain, a ridge line in the south-central part of Nevada near its border with California.

The location has been highly contested by environmentalists and Nevada residents. It was approved in 2002 by the United States Congress. Federal funding for the site ended in 2011 under the Obama Administration via amendment to the Department of Defense and Full-Year Continuing Appropriations Act, passed on April 14, 2011.[2] The Government Accountability Office stated that the closure was for political, not technical or safety reasons.[2]

This leaves US non-governmental entities, such as utilities, without any designated long term storage site for the high level radioactive waste stored on-site at various nuclear facilities around the country. The US government disposes of its waste at WIPP in New Mexico, in rooms 2,150 feet (660 m) underground.[3] The Department of Energy (DOE) is reviewing other options for a high-level waste repository and a Blue Ribbon Commission established by the Secretary of Energy released its final report in January 2012. It expressed urgency to find a consolidated, geological repository, and that any future facility should be developed by a new independent organization with direct access to the Nuclear Waste Fund, that is not subject to political and financial control like the DOE.[4]

What's wrong with Yucca Mountain as a repository for the Nuke Puke?  Well, besides the fact nobody in the neighborhood wants this toxic waste in their backyard, it will take constant maintenance in order to keep the shit from either melting down or going super critical and blowing up.  Who is going to pay for that maintenance for the next 1000 years…no wait 1,000,000 years?

So what to do with this shit?

Fire it off into space heading for the Sun on one of Richard Branson's spaceships?  The Sun is already a nuclear fireball, so that should be OK, right?

A few small problems with this idea.  There is Tons of this shit out there, every last one of the Nuke Puke plants has spent fuel ponds with 30 or 40 years worth of Puke in them.  We are not talking a few small communications satellites or glorified RVs we put into low earth orbit and call them "Space Stations", we are talking Container Ship loads of the stuff!!!!  How much Rocket Fuel do you think it would take to jack all that up even to low earth orbit, much less get it out of the Earth gravity well and hurtling towards the Sun?  Answer: a lot more than we got available here.

http://strategiya.az/images/news_images/small/08-2015/1%20(2)_36315.jpgSecond problem even if you had this much energy to do the job is the slight issue of ACCIDENTS occurring, since you would need 1000s of rocket flights up carrying the Puke into space.  Just ONE of them explodes like the Challenger did, and the Puke rains down on everyone.  Not a good scenario there obviously.

There is another location right here on Earth though where lots of nuke puke resides already, the Core of the Earth, generally composed of Uranium because it is so dense.  It provides the internal heat engine for the planet through fission (the Sun works opposite, Fusion of small elements to larger ones).  How to get the man-made Nuke Puke down there though?

Well, there are spots under the ocean floor where the crust is pretty thin, and as the plates move over one another, in some spots there are subduction zones, where part of the crust of the earth gets pushed down into the Mantle and gets recycled there.

One such zone is located in the Marianas Trench, the very deepest canyon in the Pacific Ocean.

The Mariana Trench or Marianas Trench[1] is the deepest part of the world's oceans. It is located in the western Pacific Ocean, to the east of the Mariana Islands. The trench is about 2,550 kilometres (1,580 mi) long but has an average width of only 69 kilometres (43 mi). It reaches a maximum-known depth of 10,994 m (± 40 m) or 6.831 mi (36,070 ± 131 ft) at the Challenger Deep, a small slot-shaped valley in its floor, at its southern end,[2] although some unrepeated measurements place the deepest portion at 11.03 kilometres (6.85 mi).[3]

At the bottom of the trench the water column above exerts a pressure of 1,086 bars (15,750 psi), over 1000 times the standard atmospheric pressure at sea level. At this pressure, the density of water is increased by 4.96%, making 95 litres of water under the pressure of the Challenger Deep contain the same mass as 100 litres at the surface. The temperature at the bottom is 1 to 4 °C.[4]

Now of course, the idea of taking Nuke Puke and dropping into the ocean is a big turn-off for the environmentally conscious, not to mention there are all sorts of International Treaties that make this illegal.  This does not however seem to stop the Japanese from unloading millions of gallons of Nuke Puke contaminated water from Fukushima into the ocean, and so far nobody from the Hague has arrested the TEPCO managers either.

The Marianas Trench Nuke Puke Disposal PlanTM though is significantly different than the current Nipponese method of dumping the Nuke Puke straight into the bay next to Fukushima and letting it then disperse across the entire ocean.

In this method, you're not actually disposing of the Puke into the ocean, but rather into the crust of the earth BENEATH the sea bed.  I don't think there are any international treaties covering that, or who owns it either.  Also, there is no NIMBY problem, since nobody's backyard is even CLOSE to that.

How do you get the Puke into the crust?

Drilling Capsules!

http://www.funkidslive.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/Tunnel-Boring.jpg

In this case, rather than working against gravity and trying to lift up the Nuke Puke, gravity helps you and accelerates the capsule on the way down, and like a Rifle Bullet it will begin to spin if designed as a screw shape.  It will drill itself into the ground on impact.  The material contained inside can be glassified and solidified so it won't dissolve in the water, and then after that the Earth itself does the work subducting this zone back into the mantle!  Problem Solved! 🙂

Can such a plan be implemented before complete collapse takes hold?  Unfortunately probably not for numerous reasons.  First of all, if you start shutting down the Nuke Puke plants, you're going to have shortfalls in electric power wherever they supply the grid, and nobody wants to see their lights go dark, so we'll probably keep them switched on until it is too late.  Then you have the issue that environmentalists would likely oppose the plan, and exactly how you would finance it also is pretty tough to figure.  So in all likelihood the eventual outcome is a vast number of meltdowns and a lot more radionucleotides in the environment.  Whether Homo Saps can survive that and for how long and where remains an open question, but the Tardigrades should make it through at least.

http://news.bbcimg.co.uk/media/images/52392000/jpg/_52392786_c0089246-spl.jpg

Tardigrades are extremophiles, and can survive just about anything, extreme heat or cold, lack of water, radiation, the WORKS!

Tardigrades (also known as water bears or moss piglets)[2][3][4] are water-dwelling, segmented micro-animals, with eight legs.[2] They were first discovered by the German pastor Johann August Ephraim Goeze in 1773. The name Tardigrada (meaning "slow stepper") was given three years later by the Italian biologist Lazzaro Spallanzani.[5] The phylum has been sighted from mountaintops to the deep sea, from tropical rain forests to the Antarctic[6] Tardigrades can survive in extreme environments. For example, they can withstand temperatures from just above absolute zero to well above the boiling point of water (100 °C), pressures about six times greater than those found in the deepest ocean trenches, ionizing radiation at doses hundreds of times higher than the lethal dose for a human, and the vacuum of outer space.[7] They can go without food or water for more than 10 years, drying out to the point where they are 3% or less water, only to rehydrate, forage, and reproduce.[3][8][9][10]

So, anyone suggesting that the Earth will be "barren & lifeless" in anywhere near the near term as Guy McPherson did in a recent essay either doesn't know the biology of tardigrades or else they are being purposefully melodromatic.  There are even extremophilic organisms which thrive in wicked conditions, such as around the Sulfur vents on the sea floor.  None of these organisms are going to the Great Beyond anytime too soon, no matter what happens to the higher life organisms currently populating the planet, including Homo Sap.  Nothing short of an impact with a Planet Killer Asteroid is going to wipe out all life on Earth in any kind of near term timeline.

If past history is any guide, Global Average Temperature will top out at 25C, as it always has even in the Pleiocene Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM)

http://www.geocraft.com/WVFossils/PageMill_Images/image277.gif

25C is a cakewalk for a Tardigrade, and in fact many organisms can survive this AGT, just as they did through the millenia of the PETM.  The ancestors of Homo Sap were among those creatures.

DONE ONCE, IT CAN BE DONE AGAIN!

Can, Will Homo Sap make it through this Zero Point, the 6th Great Mass Extinction Event on Earth?  Maybe, maybe not, but either way the planet won't be lifeless for quite some time to come.  For eukaryotic organisms (both unicellular & multicellular species), the Earth's environment should hold up for another 300M years or so, when the Sun starts fusing so much Helium that its radiation output will make the Earth too inhospitable for anything but a few prokayotes.  Even the Tardigrades will be toast.

In the meantime, the objective of all living creatures is to live as long as they can until they eventually, inevitably succumb to death.  Nothing lives forever, not even Planets live forever.  Far as life goes on Earth, it is already in its senecense, the equivalent in the human lifespan of being 90 with a 100 year life expectancy.  How much longer we can survive remains an open question, although the timeline of 15 years to Human Extinction is highly improbable.  The further out on the timeline you go, the more probable this is.

In the immortal words of Chuck Palahniuk:

http://izquotes.com/quotes-pictures/quote-on-a-long-enough-timeline-the-survival-rate-for-everyone-drops-to-zero-chuck-palahniuk-285421.jpg

One thing is certain, there is no possibility for survival if you quit and say it's all OVAH already and hopeless.  You make your best effort to survive as long as you can, and then when you no longer can, you will die.  Just like every other life form that was ever born on the face of the Earth.

It ain' OVAH till the Fat Lady sings for you though.

https://s3.amazonaws.com/rapgenius/1369077040_fat%20lady%20sings.jpg

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The First Casualty

gc2smOff the keyboard of Albert Bates

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Published on Peak Surfer on August 23, 2015

PeakSurfer"In the future, Hiroshima should not be remembered not just for the destruction of its inhabitants, but also for being the flag for the epidemiological cover-up of the biggest public health scandal in human history."
 

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We sometimes wonder if death by climate change is not more merciful for homo non-sapiens than reaping the unseen harvest of nuclear and toxic damage bequeathed to our genetic and ecological inheritors in this and later centuries. As we fly off to Iceland to teach a permaculture course this week, we have been fortunate to obtain this guest post by Chris Busby. It originally appeared at RT.com on Hiroshima Day and was reposted this past week on Counterpunch. 

After Hiroshima and Nagasaki, a Third Nuclear Atrocity: the Corruption of Science

On the 70th anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, articles are appearing everywhere discussing the historical, philosophical, scientific, public health and social meaning of this event (I almost wrote ‘war crime’).

The bombings can be extrapolated onward in time through the atmospheric testing fallout and Chernobyl, to the more recent contamination in Japan after Fukushima.

 

 

Today, the analysis of the health risks from the Japanese A-Bombs is being cleverly twisted to provide a rationale for the development of nuclear weapons and nuclear energy.

Hiroshima and Nagasaki are not just some historical tableaux that we can weep crocodile tears over, and discuss as socio-historic phenomena.

They are here today, present as ghosts, in all the manipulations and devious calculations made by the international radiation risk agencies and nuclear-industry scientists giving results that continue to permit the release into the environment of the same deadly substances that emerged for the first time in 1945.

Abusing Hiroshima to deny nuclear bomb health damage

I am currently presenting a case for the British Atomic Test veterans in the Royal Courts of Justice in London. The case pivots on the faulty radiation and health risk model that is based on the Lifespan Study of the Japanese A-Bomb survivors.

This model, of the International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP), is used by the Ministry of Defense in the courts to deny responsibility for the cancers in the Nuclear Test Veterans and the congenital disease in their children and grandchildren.

However, the Hiroshima model also predicts that those exposed to radiation and fallout from future nuclear ‘exchanges’ would suffer little downstream genetic damage. Thus the Doctors Strangelove and the generals can argue that a nuclear war is winnable and that the increases in cancer and genetic effects in those exposed to Depleted Uranium (DU) in Iraq somehow don’t exist.

The bogus analysis of the health outcomes from Hiroshima has left the world with a major public health problem. In an effort to refute the mounting evidence, the ICRP model was relaunched by The Lancet to coincide with the Hiroshima anniversary.

A whole issue is given over to the presentation of wacko accounts of the health consequences of Hiroshima, Chernobyl and Fukushima through articles (at least partly) written by those who hold the reins of the ICRP chariot. The key issue is accurately described at the start:

“The linkages between Hiroshima, Nagasaki and Fukushima are thus more than just symbolic, having shaped current health management practices, and the institutions that run them, as well as public responses to these events.”

However, these current health management practices are wildly in error.

Nuclear war

Everyone has seen the photos of Hiroshima. The primitive Uranium-235 bomb ‘Little Boy’ that fell on Hiroshima with an explosive power of 13 kilotons (13,000 tons of TNT, the conventional chemical explosive) flattened the city and killed some 80,000 people of which 45,000 died on the first day.

Within four months the death toll was about 140,000. Three days after Hiroshima, a 20kT Plutonium bomb ‘Fat Man’ was dropped on Nagasaki (Why? Did the US think perhaps the Hiroshima bomb might have been overlooked?). Both weapons were mostly made of Uranium.

Note that. Since then, from 1950, a study of the survivors by the US funded Atomic Bomb Casualty Commission ABCC (and later the Radiation Effects Research Foundation) has defined the relationship between radiation dose and cancer.

In passing, recall that the explosive power was 13 kilotons. Anyone who wants nightmares should buy the standard work: The Effects of Nuclear Weapons, by Samuel Glasstone, the physical chemist. The more recent versions of this book have a nifty little plastic calculator in the back where you may, by rotating the bezel, inform yourself of the radii of blast, radiation dose, building destruction etc. for any size of bomb.

The US has spent lots of money and time blowing up stuff in the Nevada and Pacific test sites to obtain these data. Modern thermonuclear warheads, of which there are currently some 15,000, pack about 800kT. Just one of these jobs would put paid to most of New York, Tehran or Jerusalem.

I visualize some poor civil defense chief sitting in a shelter somewhere desperately twisting the scales on this pretty ‘Nuclear Bomb Effects Computer’ (developed by the Lovelace Research Institute in Albuquerque, New Mexico) whilst waiting for the ground to disappear.
 

v2-Nagasaki1v2
The ruins of Nagasaki the day after the bombing.

Nuclear war is not longer unthinkable

The problem we have in the world in 2015 is that the economic system and power relations between countries encourages those taking big decisions to think in terms of geopolitical strategies that include the use of nuclear weapons.

There are potential resource wars; there are food-production issues following changes in global weather patterns, there are technological developments in what were historically manipulatable countries. Nuclear weapons are now in the hands of nine nations including three which are not party to the non-proliferation treaty (and why should they be?): India, Pakistan and North Korea.

Negotiations with Iran are currently argued to be “of tremendous importance” in a region where Israel has the nuclear potential to wipe out all the local Arab states at a sitting. The Russians have massive nuclear capability and are being baited on their borders in Ukraine by NATO and those who control NATO.

This shit-stirring now has moved to the Baltic States. I live in Latvia, and this Spring I saw a new tank with a Latvian flag rolling though the center of Ropazi, a small town 40km west of Riga near where I live. Every day, the sky overhead had big helicopters and transport aircraft, donated to the Latvians by the US. Why?

The Baltic States and Poland are conscripting armies to defend the motherland against invasion by the Russians. What’s going on? Those who sow the wind reap the whirlwind, my grandmother would say. Let us hope not.

A systematic cover-up of nuclear dangers

In all the high level strategic thinking that is associated with this nuclear warmongering, the post attack population death yields from fallout are computed according to the ICRP risk model. But that Hiroshima model is a chimeric construction, built in the Cold War to back up the atmospheric testing.

The observable effects (increases in infant mortality, the 1980s cancer epidemic) were covered up following a 1959 agreement between the International Atomic Energy Agency and the World Health Organization, which left the IAEA, the nuclear physicists, the bomb makers, the deniers of Chernobyl and Fukushima effects, in charge of the research into health.

And so it remains today with The Lancet article ‘Long-term effects of radiation exposure on health‘, co-written by particle physicist Richard Wakeford, ex-head of research of British Nuclear Fuels at Sellafield, nuclear industry representative on the UK CERRIE committee, member of the ICRP, adviser to the Japanese on Fukushima, and so forth.

The evidence from real studies of the offspring of the test veterans, and the soldiers and civilians exposed to Depleted Uranium, is that a nuclear war will be the end of life on earth as we know it.

The test veterans have a 10-fold excess risk of children with birth defects, 9-fold in the grandchildren. Although millions will be blasted away, the real outcome will be global sterility, cancer and malformation. All the Mad Max stuff but worse: Hollywood got it right.

Evidence and errors in the Hiroshima lifespan studies

If you find that there is a doubling of breast cancer or child leukemia in those living downwind of a nuclear power station, at an ‘estimated dose’ less than external background, the ICRP model tells you that the effect cannot be due to the releases from the power station because the dose is too low.

The epidemiologist Martin Tondel found in 2004 that there was a significant excess cancer risk in Northern Sweden after Chernobyl. He was told to shut up because what he found was impossible: In other words, the dose was too low.

The same in Belarus and Ukraine where my colleague Alexey Yablokov has collected together an enormous compilation of peer reviewed evidence of appalling effects. Most recently we see the Hiroshima-based denials in the case of thyroid cancer in Fukushima prefecture (see below).

The study groups for the Atomic Bomb Casualty Commission (ABCC) probe were assembled in 1950. Thus there were five years in which those who were badly affected by the radiation could die. The study was of a “healthy survivor” group, something which the late Dr Alice Stewart demonstrated.

But that is not the worst accusation. There were roughly 109,000 individuals recruited, including six dose groups from 0 to 200 rad (0-2+ Gy) and two Not in City (NIC) groups, the 4,607 Early Entrants (NIC-EE) and 21,915 Late Entrants (NIC-LE).

These NIC groups should have been the controls, but they were not. If you look at the reports you find they were abandoned as being ‘too healthy’. The final exposure groups were defined by how far they were from the detonation.

But all groups were exposed to residual radioactivity from the bombs. The US and ABCC denied (and still denies) this. There were internal exposures to all the groups whatever their external dose had been at the detonation.

Uranium: a genetic poison that targets DNA

The origin was the “black rain” which contained Uranium-235, Uranium-238 and particularly Uranium-234, which is the missing exposure, and is probably responsible for most of the cancer effects in all the survivors. We know that the Uranium was there because it was measured by Japanese scientists in 1983.

A recently declassified US document tabulates the enormous U-234 content of the enriched Uranium used in the bombs, codename: Oralloy. The Uranium nanoparticles in the Hiroshima (and Nagasaki) black rain were available for inhalation by all the exposure groups in the ruins of Hiroshima for years after the bomb.

All the bombs were made of Uranium, about 1 ton per Megaton yield. For all those tests in Nevada, the Marshall Islands, Kazakhstan, Christmas Island, the results were the same: down came the nanoparticles to be inhaled by anyone nearby and distant.

Why does this matter? New research has been carried out on Uranium. We find that Uranium targets DNA through chemical affinity. This causes terrible and anomalous genetic damage, out or all proportion to its “dose” as calculated by ICRP. Other fallout components also bind chemically to DNA, e.g. Strontium-90, Barium-140.

Those exposed: Uranium miners, Gulf Veterans, Test Veterans, DU civilians, Nuclear Uranium workers, Nuclear Site downwinders, all suffer chromosome damage, cancer, leukemia, heart disease, the works. All this is published, as are the results of laboratory and theoretical studies showing mechanisms. But in the Lancet: nothing.

S L Simon and A Bouville who wrote the article on the health effects of the nuclear testing did not even mention Uranium there, nor in their epic 2010 study of the Marshall Islands exposures. The Nevada site data that they used for their baseline calculations ignored it totally.

In 2012, I made a presentation for the Marshall Islanders at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, attacking the Simon et al analysis. In their Lancet nuclear test article, Simon and Bouville major on Iodine effects. So let’s look at those.

Scientific evidence from Fukushima: massive excess of thyroid cancers

In Fukushima Prefecture, surveys have confirmed 103 thyroid cancers in 380,000 18-year olds (25 or so are still being checked out). The Lancet article by Wakeford et al. presents an excess Relative Risk culled from the Hiroshima studies of 0.6 per Sievert (Fig 2 p 473). In the very same issue, the maximum thyroid dose was given as 18mSv with the median dose as 0.67mSv.

So in the two years of screening, if everyone screened got the maximum thyroid dose of 18mSv we should expect an increase of 0.018 x 0.6 = 0.011, a 1.1% increase in the background rate. This background is about 1 per 100,000 per year or 7.6 in two years in 380,000. So the radiation should increase this to 7.7 cases (i.e. one extra case in 10 years).

There are 103, that is 95 more cases than expected, an error in the ICRP model of 95/0.14 = 678-fold. That is, there are 678 times more thyroid cancers than the Hiroshima-based ICRP model predicts.

This calculation is based on what was written in The Lancet – but nobody made the calculation. This on its own should show the authorities (and the public) that the game is up. But instead of doing the simple calculation, another article in The Lancet, written by Geoff Watts, praises the work of those at Fukushima Medical University, who are busy telling everyone that the increases in thyroid cancer cannot be caused by the radiation.

In other words, once again, the predictions from Hiroshima are believed, rather than the evidence in front of their eyes. It’s a kind of mass hypnosis (or maybe not).

Finally, someone is trying to get to the truth of the matter

In case you think this is all mad stuff, there does at last seem to be some measure of concern evolving in this area of internal radiation, though no one in The Lancet articles mentions it. The European Union radiation research organization MELODI has finally moved into action, led by the French radiation protection agency IRSN.

The matter was raised (by me) at the inaugural MELODI conference in Paris in 2011, but nothing seemed to develop. I said that there are likely to be dose estimation problems associated with internal exposure to nuclides which bind to DNA, and particularly Uranium; that this potentially falsified the Hiroshima risk model.

A hugely expensive European research project has now been proposed. It is CURE: Concerted Uranium Research Europe. In the report launching this development in March 2015 the authors wrote: a large scale integrated collaborative project will be proposed to improve the characterization of the biological and health effects associated with uranium internal contamination in Europe.

In the future, it might be envisaged to extend collaborations with other countries outside the European Union, to apply the proposed approach to other internal emitters and other exposure situations of internal contamination, and to open the reflections to other disciplines interested in the effects of internal contaminations by radionuclides.

In the future, Hiroshima should not be remembered not just for the destruction of its inhabitants, but also for being the flag for the epidemiological cover-up of the biggest public health scandal in human history, whose victims number hundreds of millions – in cancer deaths and miscarriages, infant deaths, loss of fertility and the introduction of genomic instability to all creatures on Earth.

Let us pray that it will not be allowed to sanction the final nuclear exchange, on the mistaken prediction that such an event will be winnable.

This article was originally published by RT, and is reproduced by kind permission of the author. Dr Chris Busby is the Scientific Secretary of the European Committee on Radiation Riskand the author of Uranium and Health – The Health Effects of Exposure to Uranium and Uranium Weapons Fallout (Documents of the ECRR 2010 No 2, Brussels, 2010). For details and current CV see chrisbusbyexposed.org. For accounts of his work see greenaudit.orgllrc.org and nuclearjustice.org

 

 

 

 

After Hiroshima and Nagasaki, a Third Nuclear Atrocity: the Corruption of Science

On the 70th anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, articles are appearing everywhere discussing the historical, philosophical, scientific, public health and social meaning of this event (I almost wrote ‘war crime’).
 

The bombings can be extrapolated onward in time through the atmospheric testing fallout and Chernobyl, to the more recent contamination in Japan after Fukushima.

 

 

 

Today, the analysis of the health risks from the Japanese A-Bombs is being cleverly twisted to provide a rationale for the development of nuclear weapons and nuclear energy.

Hiroshima and Nagasaki are not just some historical tableaux that we can weep crocodile tears over, and discuss as socio-historic phenomena.

They are here today, present as ghosts, in all the manipulations and devious calculations made by the international radiation risk agencies and nuclear-industry scientists giving results that continue to permit the release into the environment of the same deadly substances that emerged for the first time in 1945.

Abusing Hiroshima to deny nuclear bomb health damage

I am currently presenting a case for the British Atomic Test veterans in the Royal Courts of Justice in London. The case pivots on the faulty radiation and health risk model that is based on the Lifespan Study of the Japanese A-Bomb survivors.

This model, of the International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP), is used by the Ministry of Defense in the courts to deny responsibility for the cancers in the Nuclear Test Veterans and the congenital disease in their children and grandchildren.

However, the Hiroshima model also predicts that those exposed to radiation and fallout from future nuclear ‘exchanges’ would suffer little downstream genetic damage. Thus the Doctors Strangelove and the generals can argue that a nuclear war is winnable and that the increases in cancer and genetic effects in those exposed to Depleted Uranium (DU) in Iraq somehow don’t exist.

The bogus analysis of the health outcomes from Hiroshima has left the world with a major public health problem. In an effort to refute the mounting evidence, the ICRP model was relaunched by The Lancet to coincide with the Hiroshima anniversary.

A whole issue is given over to the presentation of wacko accounts of the health consequences of Hiroshima, Chernobyl and Fukushima through articles (at least partly) written by those who hold the reins of the ICRP chariot. The key issue is accurately described at the start:

“The linkages between Hiroshima, Nagasaki and Fukushima are thus more than just symbolic, having shaped current health management practices, and the institutions that run them, as well as public responses to these events.”

However, these current health management practices are wildly in error.

Nuclear war

Everyone has seen the photos of Hiroshima. The primitive Uranium-235 bomb ‘Little Boy’ that fell on Hiroshima with an explosive power of 13 kilotons (13,000 tons of TNT, the conventional chemical explosive) flattened the city and killed some 80,000 people of which 45,000 died on the first day.

Within four months the death toll was about 140,000. Three days after Hiroshima, a 20kT Plutonium bomb ‘Fat Man’ was dropped on Nagasaki (Why? Did the US think perhaps the Hiroshima bomb might have been overlooked?). Both weapons were mostly made of Uranium.

Note that. Since then, from 1950, a study of the survivors by the US funded Atomic Bomb Casualty Commission ABCC (and later the Radiation Effects Research Foundation) has defined the relationship between radiation dose and cancer.

In passing, recall that the explosive power was 13 kilotons. Anyone who wants nightmares should buy the standard work: The Effects of Nuclear Weapons, by Samuel Glasstone, the physical chemist. The more recent versions of this book have a nifty little plastic calculator in the back where you may, by rotating the bezel, inform yourself of the radii of blast, radiation dose, building destruction etc. for any size of bomb.

The US has spent lots of money and time blowing up stuff in the Nevada and Pacific test sites to obtain these data. Modern thermonuclear warheads, of which there are currently some 15,000, pack about 800kT. Just one of these jobs would put paid to most of New York, Tehran or Jerusalem.

I visualize some poor civil defense chief sitting in a shelter somewhere desperately twisting the scales on this pretty ‘Nuclear Bomb Effects Computer’ (developed by the Lovelace Research Institute in Albuquerque, New Mexico) whilst waiting for the ground to disappear.
 

v2-Nagasaki1v2
The ruins of Nagasaki the day after the bombing.

Nuclear war is not longer unthinkable

The problem we have in the world in 2015 is that the economic system and power relations between countries encourages those taking big decisions to think in terms of geopolitical strategies that include the use of nuclear weapons.

There are potential resource wars; there are food-production issues following changes in global weather patterns, there are technological developments in what were historically manipulatable countries. Nuclear weapons are now in the hands of nine nations including three which are not party to the non-proliferation treaty (and why should they be?): India, Pakistan and North Korea.

Negotiations with Iran are currently argued to be “of tremendous importance” in a region where Israel has the nuclear potential to wipe out all the local Arab states at a sitting. The Russians have massive nuclear capability and are being baited on their borders in Ukraine by NATO and those who control NATO.

This shit-stirring now has moved to the Baltic States. I live in Latvia, and this Spring I saw a new tank with a Latvian flag rolling though the center of Ropazi, a small town 40km west of Riga near where I live. Every day, the sky overhead had big helicopters and transport aircraft, donated to the Latvians by the US. Why?

The Baltic States and Poland are conscripting armies to defend the motherland against invasion by the Russians. What’s going on? Those who sow the wind reap the whirlwind, my grandmother would say. Let us hope not.

A systematic cover-up of nuclear dangers

In all the high level strategic thinking that is associated with this nuclear warmongering, the post attack population death yields from fallout are computed according to the ICRP risk model. But that Hiroshima model is a chimeric construction, built in the Cold War to back up the atmospheric testing.

The observable effects (increases in infant mortality, the 1980s cancer epidemic) were covered up following a 1959 agreement between the International Atomic Energy Agency and the World Health Organization, which left the IAEA, the nuclear physicists, the bomb makers, the deniers of Chernobyl and Fukushima effects, in charge of the research into health.

And so it remains today with The Lancet article ‘Long-term effects of radiation exposure on health‘, co-written by particle physicist Richard Wakeford, ex-head of research of British Nuclear Fuels at Sellafield, nuclear industry representative on the UK CERRIE committee, member of the ICRP, adviser to the Japanese on Fukushima, and so forth.

The evidence from real studies of the offspring of the test veterans, and the soldiers and civilians exposed to Depleted Uranium, is that a nuclear war will be the end of life on earth as we know it.

The test veterans have a 10-fold excess risk of children with birth defects, 9-fold in the grandchildren. Although millions will be blasted away, the real outcome will be global sterility, cancer and malformation. All the Mad Max stuff but worse: Hollywood got it right.

Evidence and errors in the Hiroshima lifespan studies

If you find that there is a doubling of breast cancer or child leukemia in those living downwind of a nuclear power station, at an ‘estimated dose’ less than external background, the ICRP model tells you that the effect cannot be due to the releases from the power station because the dose is too low.

The epidemiologist Martin Tondel found in 2004 that there was a significant excess cancer risk in Northern Sweden after Chernobyl. He was told to shut up because what he found was impossible: In other words, the dose was too low.

The same in Belarus and Ukraine where my colleague Alexey Yablokov has collected together an enormous compilation of peer reviewed evidence of appalling effects. Most recently we see the Hiroshima-based denials in the case of thyroid cancer in Fukushima prefecture (see below).

The study groups for the Atomic Bomb Casualty Commission (ABCC) probe were assembled in 1950. Thus there were five years in which those who were badly affected by the radiation could die. The study was of a “healthy survivor” group, something which the late Dr Alice Stewart demonstrated.

But that is not the worst accusation. There were roughly 109,000 individuals recruited, including six dose groups from 0 to 200 rad (0-2+ Gy) and two Not in City (NIC) groups, the 4,607 Early Entrants (NIC-EE) and 21,915 Late Entrants (NIC-LE).

These NIC groups should have been the controls, but they were not. If you look at the reports you find they were abandoned as being ‘too healthy’. The final exposure groups were defined by how far they were from the detonation.

But all groups were exposed to residual radioactivity from the bombs. The US and ABCC denied (and still denies) this. There were internal exposures to all the groups whatever their external dose had been at the detonation.

Uranium: a genetic poison that targets DNA

The origin was the “black rain” which contained Uranium-235, Uranium-238 and particularly Uranium-234, which is the missing exposure, and is probably responsible for most of the cancer effects in all the survivors. We know that the Uranium was there because it was measured by Japanese scientists in 1983.

A recently declassified US document tabulates the enormous U-234 content of the enriched Uranium used in the bombs, codename: Oralloy. The Uranium nanoparticles in the Hiroshima (and Nagasaki) black rain were available for inhalation by all the exposure groups in the ruins of Hiroshima for years after the bomb.

All the bombs were made of Uranium, about 1 ton per Megaton yield. For all those tests in Nevada, the Marshall Islands, Kazakhstan, Christmas Island, the results were the same: down came the nanoparticles to be inhaled by anyone nearby and distant.

Why does this matter? New research has been carried out on Uranium. We find that Uranium targets DNA through chemical affinity. This causes terrible and anomalous genetic damage, out or all proportion to its “dose” as calculated by ICRP. Other fallout components also bind chemically to DNA, e.g. Strontium-90, Barium-140.

Those exposed: Uranium miners, Gulf Veterans, Test Veterans, DU civilians, Nuclear Uranium workers, Nuclear Site downwinders, all suffer chromosome damage, cancer, leukemia, heart disease, the works. All this is published, as are the results of laboratory and theoretical studies showing mechanisms. But in the Lancet: nothing.

S L Simon and A Bouville who wrote the article on the health effects of the nuclear testing did not even mention Uranium there, nor in their epic 2010 study of the Marshall Islands exposures. The Nevada site data that they used for their baseline calculations ignored it totally.

In 2012, I made a presentation for the Marshall Islanders at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, attacking the Simon et al analysis. In their Lancet nuclear test article, Simon and Bouville major on Iodine effects. So let’s look at those.

Scientific evidence from Fukushima: massive excess of thyroid cancers

In Fukushima Prefecture, surveys have confirmed 103 thyroid cancers in 380,000 18-year olds (25 or so are still being checked out). The Lancet article by Wakeford et al. presents an excess Relative Risk culled from the Hiroshima studies of 0.6 per Sievert (Fig 2 p 473). In the very same issue, the maximum thyroid dose was given as 18mSv with the median dose as 0.67mSv.

So in the two years of screening, if everyone screened got the maximum thyroid dose of 18mSv we should expect an increase of 0.018 x 0.6 = 0.011, a 1.1% increase in the background rate. This background is about 1 per 100,000 per year or 7.6 in two years in 380,000. So the radiation should increase this to 7.7 cases (i.e. one extra case in 10 years).

There are 103, that is 95 more cases than expected, an error in the ICRP model of 95/0.14 = 678-fold. That is, there are 678 times more thyroid cancers than the Hiroshima-based ICRP model predicts.

This calculation is based on what was written in The Lancet – but nobody made the calculation. This on its own should show the authorities (and the public) that the game is up. But instead of doing the simple calculation, another article in The Lancet, written by Geoff Watts, praises the work of those at Fukushima Medical University, who are busy telling everyone that the increases in thyroid cancer cannot be caused by the radiation.

In other words, once again, the predictions from Hiroshima are believed, rather than the evidence in front of their eyes. It’s a kind of mass hypnosis (or maybe not).

Finally, someone is trying to get to the truth of the matter

In case you think this is all mad stuff, there does at last seem to be some measure of concern evolving in this area of internal radiation, though no one in The Lancet articles mentions it. The European Union radiation research organization MELODI has finally moved into action, led by the French radiation protection agency IRSN.

The matter was raised (by me) at the inaugural MELODI conference in Paris in 2011, but nothing seemed to develop. I said that there are likely to be dose estimation problems associated with internal exposure to nuclides which bind to DNA, and particularly Uranium; that this potentially falsified the Hiroshima risk model.

A hugely expensive European research project has now been proposed. It is CURE: Concerted Uranium Research Europe. In the report launching this development in March 2015 the authors wrote: a large scale integrated collaborative project will be proposed to improve the characterization of the biological and health effects associated with uranium internal contamination in Europe.

In the future, it might be envisaged to extend collaborations with other countries outside the European Union, to apply the proposed approach to other internal emitters and other exposure situations of internal contamination, and to open the reflections to other disciplines interested in the effects of internal contaminations by radionuclides.

In the future, Hiroshima should not be remembered not just for the destruction of its inhabitants, but also for being the flag for the epidemiological cover-up of the biggest public health scandal in human history, whose victims number hundreds of millions – in cancer deaths and miscarriages, infant deaths, loss of fertility and the introduction of genomic instability to all creatures on Earth.

Let us pray that it will not be allowed to sanction the final nuclear exchange, on the mistaken prediction that such an event will be winnable.

This article was originally published by RT, and is reproduced by kind permission of the author. Dr Chris Busby is the Scientific Secretary of the European Committee on Radiation Riskand the author of Uranium and Health – The Health Effects of Exposure to Uranium and Uranium Weapons Fallout (Documents of the ECRR 2010 No 2, Brussels, 2010). For details and current CV see chrisbusbyexposed.org. For accounts of his work see greenaudit.orgllrc.org and nuclearjustice.org

The 8th Crusade

Off the microphone of RE

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Aired on the Doomstead Diner on August 28, 2014

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Don't miss the recent 2 part Interview with Dmitry Orlov

Analysing Ukraine and MENA

Supply Chains, Population & Community

Discuss this article at the Podcast Table inside the Diner

Tagged:Beheading, Crucifixion, Crusades, Drones, Hiroshima, Holy War, ISIS, Jerusalem, MENA, Nagasaki, NATO, Vlad the Impaler

http://uberglobal.files.wordpress.com/2013/11/christcrucified-mel-gibson-passion-of-christ.jpg  http://www.medievalages.net/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/impalement.jpg

isis

Snippet:

…Now that the local Doom Action has calmed down, we can go back and revisit some of the International Doom ongoing during the period, including the Beheading of a Journalist by the ISIS Propaganda team, complete with videos. Videos I didn't watch though, partially because I don't wanna use up my bandwidth and partially because the rumour is that it will soon be a Criminal Offense to WATCH any You Tube vids dropped on by ISIS propaganda experts. I got enough issues with Black SUVs tailing me these days, I don't need to add grist to the mill here for watching illegal Decapitation Vids.

I have read in the Blogosphere though that the Decap Vid was actually fairly Tasteful, in that it did not show real gruesome Spurting Blood Monty Python style. Probably calculated on the part of the ISIS Propaganda team that if they made it too gruesome, they couldn't get enough eyeballls to watch it and this would hurt their Alexa Ranking. LOL. Just gruesome enough to strike TERROR into the heart of the Western audience as they recycle good old fashioned Execution Methods down there from the Middle Ages and further back to the Roman Empire…

For the rest, LISTEN TO THE RANT!!!

This Was The Week That Was In Doom August 12, 2013

It’s Off the keyboard of Surly1
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Originally published on the Doomstead Diner on August 12, 2013

http://991.com/newGallery/That-Was-The-Week-That-W-That-Was-The-Week-473964.jpg

Discuss this article here in the Diner Forum.

 

“To initiate a war of aggression, therefore, is not only an international crime; it is the supreme international crime differing only from other war crimes in that it contains within itself the accumulated evil of the whole”:

~Nuremburg War Tribunal regarding wars of aggression

“A Society that is in its higher circles and middle levels widely believed to be a network of smart rackets does not produce men with an inner moral sense; a society that is merely expedient does not produce men of conscience. A society that narrows the meaning of “success” to the big money and in its terms condemns failure as the chief vice, raising money to the plane of absolute value, will produce the sharp operator and the shady deal. Blessed are the cynical, for only they have what it takes to succeed.”

The Power Elite by C. Wright Mills

Hiroshima Nuclear-Bomb

Post your comments here on the Diner Forum.

In reply to a teabagger troll inside the Doomstead Diner Forum this week, I opined that the act of dropping atomic weapons on Hiroshima and Nagasaki was tantamount to selling of the American soul to the devil.  Was dropping those bombs militarily necessary?   My correspondent averred that “The bombs were dropped, the Japanese surrendered,”  Which to my reading of history is a post hoc ergo proctor hoc  logical fallacy.  I say this because history is always written by the winners, and serious leaders in positions of responsibility for securing victory during World War II asserted that dropping atomic weapons was not necessary. Senior military men including Adm. William D. Leahy, Gen. Douglas MacArthur, Dwight D Eisenhower, and even the US Strategic Bombing Survey all agreed that dropping the bombs was militarily unnecessary. From 70 years remove, it is virtually forgotten that Japan offered to surrender in July of 1945, and that the US government ignored the proffer.

Much is made of the Japanese plan for the defense of the home islands, called “Ketsu-go.”  Near the end of 1944, the Japanese high command  had lost a succession of naval battles, including losing the Mariana Islands and the Battle of the Philippine Sea, at a cost of men and materiel not easily replaced. Japan’s planners realized that the decisive battle was likely to be fought on Japan’s main islands. They planned accordingly. Sources say that Japanese strategists predicted correctly that Americans would assault Iwo Jima and then Okinawa, where the Japanese hoped fierce resistance would force a negotiated peace. The Japanese also prepared for an invasion of Japan from Okinawa. They calculated the range of American fighter planes, and predicted correctly where the landing would be — on the island of Kyushu, and from there on to Tokyo. The Japanese called this plan Ketsu-Go, which I am unable to translate, but which either seems to mean “conclusion” and/or “a bite on the ass.” Or maybe both.

bomb-exploding-nagasaki

Yet by spring 1945, the emperor had his doubts. He sent an envoy to Russia to ask the Soviet Union to mediate an end to the war. The emperor and his war cabinet also faced reports citing depletion of Japanese industry, likely food shortages, poor harvests leading to mass starvation, and concern about popular unrest. The Imperial Navy was done and the Imperial Army in China was fully occupied with Chinese resistance forces  Facing this evidence, it was likely that Japan’s war planners were seeking a decisive battle sooner rather than later before their situation became so desperate that they could not even mount such a resistance.

 

On July 27,  Japan’s government ignored the Allied ultimatum from Potsdam, warning of “prompt and utter destruction” unless it surrendered unconditionally.  It was still waiting to hear back from Uncle Joe.  In the fullness of time, Russian invaded Manchuria, and the race for Japan was on.

 

 skulls hiroshimaEven George Marshall, who supported Truman’s decision to drop the bombs, said that the bombs were dropped for political rather than military reasons, not the least of which was to send a message to Russia and Stalin. It is this act that opened Pandora’s box.   The act was a message to the Soviet Union and Stalin.  It was rooted in the capitalists’ dread of communism; remember that Truman succeeded Henry Wallace on the 1944 ticket as the candidate for vice president, as Wallace was seen as too sympathetic to socialist causes. The red scares whipped up by Hoover in the post-World War I era were still within living memory of many of the people serving in Roosevelt’s administration, and fear of Godless Communism informed the defense posture and foreign policy of postwar America. It was this fear which led America  from its republican origins to the sort of garrison state that would routinely overturn governments from Iran to Central America to Argentina and Chile, and then on to Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria. Fear gave us the atomic weapons arms race, the Cold War, and several generations of existential dread, now culminating in a national security state that serves only corporate interests and war profiteers, and whose moral framework is indistinguishable from that of the Mongol horde.

 

Indeed, what real moral distance is spanned between employing nuclear weapons of mass distraction on a helpless civilian population, and the “double tap” employed by our drone operators on first responders to drone attacks? You’ll not readily find such information in the corporate media. One has to look far afield even to be vaguely informed about what our government does in our name, and how the rest of the world feels about it. And we sit, complicit, in silence.

 *  *  *

 

In related news, “Breaking Bad” opens its fifth and final season tonight. “Breaking Bad” is in itself a study of how a good man can go wrong, and how evil, like cancer, can metastasize within us. This series can be enjoyed both as a gripping tale of money and power in the American southwest, and as a vivid allegory for contemporary American life.  “Breaking Bad” references our capacity for self-delusion, how money replaces values, how evil can grow like cancer even in the mildest of men, and how terror can become a commonplace. Hannah Arendt’s famous quote about the “banality of evil” is clearly on display. “Breaking Bad” illustrates what happens when murder becomes part of your skill set. And those of us not willing to murder yet sit, silently complicit. Part of the appeal of this program is that many of us recognize Walter White dwelling just below the surface in many people we meet, in corporate life, and sometimes even in the mirror.

______________________________________________________________

The Double-Tap

Bureau Investigation Finds Fresh Evidence of CIA Drone Strikes on Rescuers

One hopes it is not overly difficult to see the direct line between the decision to drop weapons of mass distraction 70 years ago and the decisions made, now on a daily basis, to wage warfare by remote control. These techniques have in common faceless incineration and death from above, now apparently commonplace and well accepted techniques of statecraft.  investigators find the CIA is deliberately targeting rescuers, or 1st responders after drone strikes. For his part, the CIA vigorously denies the charge.

A field investigation by the Bureau of Investigative Journalism in Pakistan’s tribal areas appears to confirm that the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) last year briefly revived the controversial tactic of deliberately targeting rescuers at the scene of a previous drone strike. The tactic has previously been labelled a possible war crime by two UN investigators.

The Bureau’s new study focused mainly on strikes around a single village in North Waziristan – attacks that were aimed at one of al Qaeda’s few remaining senior figures, Yahya al-Libi. He was finally killed by a CIA drone strike on June 4 2012.

The Bureau’s field researcher found five double-tap strikes took place in mid-2012, one of which also struck a mosque

Congressional aides have previously been reported as describing to the Los Angeles Times reviewing a CIA video showing Yahya al-Libi alone being killed. But the Bureau’s field research appears to confirm what others reported at the time – that al-Libi’s death was part of a sequence of strikes on the same location that killed up to 16 people.

If correct, that would indicate that Congressional aides were not shown crucial additional video material.

The CIA has robustly rejected the charge. Spokesman Edward Price told the Bureau: ‘The CIA takes its commitment to Congressional oversight with the utmost seriousness. The Agency provides accurate and timely information consistent with our obligation to the oversight Committees. Any accusation alleging otherwise is baseless.

Read the report for yourself here.

______________________________________________

Is the Government Out to Eat You?

A man named Paul Rosenberg runs a website called Freeman’s Perspective. In spite of the fact that Rosenberg is an avowed  “adventure capitalist” he appears to also have been a successful engineer, government consultant, educator. Even though he has many perspectives that I personally do not agree with, often I find his perspectives useful and challenging my own views. Like the article submitted for your edification, below.

Given the fact that so much of what we do on the Diner runs on the Internet, and to a significant extent my own livelihood depends on the internet’s continued function and well-being, when a writer has written the first ever standard for the installation of fiber optic cables, as has Rosenberg, I assume he has something useful to say.

This graph is a very typical display of the predator/prey relationship. It comes from a study on rabbits and coyotes, but the relationship is the same for all predator/prey tandems, from tiny parasites and their hosts to lions and antelopes. The predators always overfeed until the prey can no longer sustain them, then most of them die and the rest wait for the prey to replenish themselves.

It works in the same way for human governance. You are the rabbits; the rulers are the coyotes.

 

 

By his own admission, Rosenberg often looks at economic matters from the perspective of the rabbits. This time, if he looks at it from the perspective of the coyotes. Many things become clear:

Rulership is an exercise in skimming. Think of your own interactions with your government – the primary exchange is that they take some of your production. This occurs in many ways: when you get a paycheck, when you pay your electric bill or phone bill, when you get a license plate for your car, every time you pay sales tax, and so on. Rulership lives on the skim.

In order to maintain the skim, a ruler has several mental tools:

Claims of necessity. Make people fear that without the ruler, monstrous foreigners will invade and make things much, much worse.

Inertia. Once people are moving in any given direction (such as paying the skim as a matter of course), they will tend to keep moving that way until an outside force deflects or stops them.

Tradition. This is the story that it has always been this way, and that your grandparents (and their grandparents) have all lived this way and called it righteous. Tradition displaces analysis. At the gate of analysis (deciding if the skim is or isn’t good for you), tradition stands as a guardian saying, “You shall not pass.” To analyze would be to spit in tradition’s face.

Fear of standing alone. The friends of rulership can be counted on to present images of conformity and to exalt the concept of unity. The effect of this is to raise the price of non-conformity. To question the skim, you must face the fear of becoming an outcast.

Disguising fear. This is crucial and multifaceted. Rather than saying, “Pay taxes or armed men will imprison you,” for example, they must appeal to patriotism, shared sacrifice, helping the poor, or something. Of course it is true that people only pay because of fear, but that truth should not be seen. A plausible substitute must be provided.

From this perspective, of the coyote, “maintaining the skim” seems to be BAU in the FSA.  This weekend, where I live in southeastern Virginia, social media has been ablaze with notices of state patrol cars lying in wait on major arteries, doubtless to help state patrolman book their monthly quota of fees. To Charles Hugh Smith’s “tax donkeys and debt serfs,”  add “fine and fee monkeys.”

______________________________________________

New Study Finds High Levels of Arsenic in Groundwater Near Fracking Sites

Brian Fontenot and Kevin Schug, two of the authors of a new study that ties fracking to arsenic contamination. (University of Texas Arlington)

Pro Publica this week published an article about a study that found high levels of arsenic in groundwater near fracturing sites. An article by Theodoric Meyer includes a Q&A with Brian Fontenot, whose research gives the latest indication that fracking may be tied to arsenic contamination.
 The levels of heavy metals appear to be many times higher near fracturing sites that occurs naturally without fracking. Also, the fluid used for fracking remains proprietary to the energy companies, who resist revealing the contents. Thus it is left to sciences to investigate after the fact, and after the groundwater has been destroyed.
Here’s an excerpt:

We found that there were actually quite a few examples of elevated constituents, such as heavy metals, the main players being arsenic, selenium and strontium. And we found each of those metals at levels that are above EPA’s maximum contaminate limit for drinking water.

These heavy metals do naturally occur in the groundwater in this region. But we have a historical dataset that points to the fact that the levels we found are sort of unusual and not natural. These really high levels differ from what the groundwater used to be like before fracking came in. . . .

We also found a few samples that had measureable levels of methanol and ethanol, and these are two substances that don’t naturally occur in groundwater. They can actually be created by bacterial interactions underwater, but whenever methanol or ethanol occur in the environment, they’re very fleeting and transient. So for us to be able to actually randomly take a grab sample and detect detectable methanol and ethanol — that implies that there may be a continuous source of this.

You found levels of arsenic in areas with fracking that were almost 18 times higher than in areas without fracking or in the historical data. What would happen to someone who drank that water?

Arsenic is a pretty well-known poison. If you experience a lot of long-term exposure to arsenic, you get a lot of different risks, like skin damage, problems with the circulatory system or even an increased risk of cancer. The levels that we found would not be a lethal dose, but they’re certainly levels that you would not want to be exposed to for any extended period of time.

 Studies like this always require further research.  Arsenic occurs naturally in many formations, and it may be that the process of tracking, rather than the fluids themselves, and disturbed this natural occurrence.But one of the reasons the research is not done is because the energy extraction industries don’t want to do it, and don’t want to see it done. In a rational world frackers would be obliged to perform this research prior to drilling, but that would be bad for profits. Once again, profits are privatized, while risks and costs are socialized and borne by we mere commons.

Keep in mind  that the energy extraction industry is enthusiastically abetted by Republicans and neoliberal Democrats,  who operate by an ethical system that permits the sacrifice of the lives of many to further enrich a few.

If you care about these matters, the rest of the Pro Publica article is well worth your time.

__________________________________

Can Activists Win the PR Battle With the Fossil Fuel Industry? 

This TransCanada PowerPoint slide depicting anti-pipeline activists was used to brief the FBI and law enforcement officials. (Tar Sands Blockade)

In Waging Nonviolence 
Adam Federman reports: “Until recently the energy industry has been able to keep its hardball tactics largely out of public view. But if state, federal and corporate surveillance of environmental activists continues, the noisy millions … might have even more reason to join the fight.”

More evidence that rust never sleeps.  Remember those “fusion centers” created by Homeland Security with our tax dollars? Well, now they work in collusion with privatized intelligence gathering and security apparatus directly for the benefit of corporations,  against protesters, activists and others who dare oppose the privatization and profit extraction of the Commons.

In mid-June, Bold Nebraska — a grassroots environmental organization opposed to construction of the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline — obtained documents that detail how local and federal law enforcement agencies, as well as the company responsible for building the pipeline, are working together to undermine peaceful political protest. The documents revealed that the company, TransCanada, had briefed the FBI as well as law enforcement officials — district attorneys, attorney generals and county sheriffs — in Oklahoma and Nebraska on the potential threat posed by environmental activists and local landowners. In their PowerPoint presentation the company suggested that district attorneys should explore “state or federal anti-terrorism laws” in prosecuting activists and provided a crude dossier on the key organizers. They also included a list of individuals previously arrested for acts of nonviolent civil disobedience in Texas and Oklahoma.

There is a long history of corporations and the state acting in concert to suppress environmental activism. But in recent years the relationship has deepened. This is in part a function of the post-9/11 national security state, which has placed a premium on information sharing between Department of Homeland Security fusion centers, local law enforcement officials and the private sector. In fact, on the same day that TransCanada delivered its presentation to Nebraska law enforcement officials, a representative of the Nebraska Information Analysis Center, a Department of Homeland Security fusion center, also briefed participants on the agency’s information-sharing network. According to emails exchanged before the meeting and obtained through a Freedom of Information Act Request, “The NIAC will brief on our intelligence sharing role/plan relevant to the pipeline project and provide an overview of a project we are working on.”

The article goes on to say the corporations engaging in espionage on activists are not bound by the regulations that  governmental agencies are obliged to follow, at least in theory.

“They don’t have to abide by the U.S. attorney manual on spying guidelines,” Regan said. “They don’t even have to go through secretive FISA courts to hack into people’s computers or listen in on their cell phone calls.”

This is the world in which activists now find themselves. Not only must they contend with the sweeping surveillance powers of the state, brought to light most recently by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden, but also the expanding — and essentially unregulated — corporate security and intelligence gathering network.

Yet activists continue undaunted. Public opposition to fracturing, the Keystone XL pipeline, and other attempts to confiscate the common enterprise has resulted in a number of highly visible campaigns that continue undaunted. The fact that public opposition continues to grow  like wildfire has corporate interests very worried.  As well they should be. As common citizens become more educated to the dangers posed by the current techniques of energy extraction industries, the numbers of those willing to participate in acts of protest and civil this immediate’s can only grow. As occupiers know, the only way to affect change is to mass people in the streets. Ham-handed techniques employed by the corporate state often assist activists in getting the word out.

Read the rest of the article here.  and in a related article, here’s how they do it.

_____________________________________________

The Corporate Strategy to Win The War Against Grassroots Activists: Stratfor’s Strategies

It turns out that there is a template to corporations and governments use to disrupt, dissuade, and defuse popular movements. It certainly comes as no surprise to several former occupiers. And it turns out that it was developed by the founders of our good friends over at Stratfor

Steve Horn  Of the “Popular Resistance blog at Mint Press News published this thorough and magnificent article.  The article details the history of the groups that led to the formation of Stratfor,  the involvement of key individuals with Big Tobacco, and their current collaboration with government and the energy extraction industries (such as the American Petroleum Institute) to provide a highly sophisticated level of intelligence used to disrupt and oppose activist groups.

Unsurprisingly, they have a formula and use different take weeks on each of the four different sorts of dissenters and resisters.

 

Divide activists into four groups: Radicals, Idealists, Realists and Opportunists. The Opportunists are in it for themselves and can be pulled away for their own self-interest. The Realists can be convinced that transformative change is not possible and we must settle for what is possible.  Idealists can be convinced they have the facts wrong and pulled to the Realist camp.  Radicals, who see the system as corrupt and needing transformation, need to be isolated and discredited, using false charges to assassinate their character is a common tactic.

Let’s be clear about the kind of people were dealing with here. The attitude evinced below is typical of the true believer:

And how best to deal with “radicals” like Julian Assange, founder and executive director of WikiLeaks, and whistleblower Bradley Manning, who gave WikiLeaks the U.S. State Department diplomatic cables, the Iraq and Afghanistan war logs and the “Collateral Murder” video? Bart Mongoven has a simple solution to “isolate” them, as suggested by Duchin’s formula.

“I’m in favor of using whatever trumped up charge is available to get [Assange] and his servers off the streets. And I’d feed that shit head soldier [Bradley Manning] to the first pack of wild dogs I could find,” Mongoven wrote in one email exchange revealed by the “Global Intelligence Files.” “Or perhaps just do to him whatever the Iranians are doing to our sources there.”

Indeed, the use of “trumped up charges” is often a way the U.S. government deals with radical activists, as demonstrated clearly during the days of the FBI’s Counter-Intelligence Program during the 1960s, as well as in modern-day Occupy movement-related cases in Cleveland and Chicago.

The intelligences that Stratfor sells to corporate clients is, as the article asserts, “the information economy’s equivalent of guns.” Corporations wage war upon activists to ensure that power, profits, and control I had influenced by the actions of mere mortals. And the changes urged by activist becomes even more difficult in a political environment where corporate interests dominate with money, and corporate media offer little more than corporate press releases.

__________________________________

 New Crash Footage Fuels Rumors Surrounding Journalist Michael Hastings’ Death

he newly released surveillance footage shows what appears to be an uncharacteristically bright explosion from the crash of journalist Michael Hastings’ car, killing him. (Photo/screen grab via YouTube)

Some weeks ago, journalist Michael Hastings was killed in a car crash in Los Angeles.  For those who do not know, Hastings was a reporter for BuzzFeed and Rolling Stone who gained an A-list reputation after he wrote the piece for Rolling Stone  that profiled Gen. Stanley McChrystal. Yes, THAT piece . . .
An odor of conspiracy surrounds this crash, including recent news about the vulnerability to hacking of on board computer systems on certain high-end vehicles via remote control.
Newly released surveillance footage shows what appears to be an uncharacteristically bright explosion from the crash.
According to San Diego 6 News, the new surveillance video provides new information about the incident, which some say may not have been an accident. As Mint Press News previously reported, hours before his death, WikiLeaks says the journalist contacted the organization’s lawyer, Jennifer Robinson, and said the FBI was investigating him.

The new surveillance footage “shows a flash of light appearing at the 13-14-second mark, the headlights are on at 14 seconds, but all lights are extinguished at the 16-second mark. The car then turns left and the first horizontal explosion appears just after the 16-second mark (it ejects the left front tire across northbound highland approximately 40-50 feet). The second explosion engulfs the engine compartment at the 17-second mark. The third and largest explosion consumes the passenger compartment at the 17-18-second mark.”

 This story continues to have legs, given the number of  anomalies surrounding it.  there are 2 explosions. The fire was more intense than a simple gasoline fire, which only burns at about 540°F. A palm tree that Hastings car hit had minimal damage, considering it was hit by a 3500 pound car supposedly moving at 100 mph, according to investigators.  But for all the unexplained facts surrounding this case, and the fact that some media outlets continue to speculate whether Hastings was targeted by the FBI, the Los Angeles police department has denied release of any information and close the case.

Laura Eimiller, the FBI’s Los Angeles spokeswoman, maintains the agency was not conducting an investigation involving Hastings.

 This little sewer grating outflow into the Internet is not closing the case.

 

_____________________________________________________

You’re Shitting Me, Right?

Time now for that portion of our program where the daily headlines have outstripped the imagination.  Follow the links to read the original articles.

Rep. Steve King (R-IA) on Tuesday managed to insult both religious Americans and climate scientists while denying the existence of global warming.

During the kickoff for the Americans for Prosperity-sponsored “Bruce Braley Big Government Tour” in Fort Dodge, King explained that attempts to fight climate change were unnecessary and hurting the economy, according to The Messenger.

“It is not proven, it’s not science,” he insisted. “It’s more of a religion than a science.”

The Republican congressman said that scientists are too focused on the bad impacts of increased carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

“Everything that might result from a warmer planet is always bad in [climate scientists’] analysis,” he opined. “There will be more photosynthesis going on if the Earth gets warmer… And if sea levels go up 4 or 6 inches, I don’t know if we’d know that.”

King told the crowd that sea levels could not be precisely measured.

_____________________________________________________

Louie Gohmert: Global Warming Isn’t Real Until ‘My Pool Overflows’

Sometimes, they just write themselves.

WASHINGTON – Representative Louie Gohmert (R-Tex.) today dismissed a recent report that showed evidence for drastic climate change in 2012, saying that he’ll “believe it when [he] sees it.” According to Gohmert, the report—which was authored by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and documented rising sea levels, among other climatic changes—is “a bunch of voodoo science,” that he won’t accept until “the ocean’s on [his] own front doorstep.”
Gohmert—who does not believe that human activity contributes to global warming—admitted that he hadn’t actually read the report. “Rising sea levels? Melting ice caps? Well now, if that were true, how come the water in my pool isn’t any higher than it was last year?”
According to the report, in 2012 many indicators of global warming intensified appreciably. Sea levels reached record levels, and the researchers documented “dramatic spikes in ocean heat content, a record melt of Arctic sea ice in the summer, and whopping temporary melts of ice in most of Greenland.”  Such measurements led Deke Arndt, co-author of the report, to conclude that climate indicators are “all singing the same song that we live in a warming world.”

_______________________________________

#NoNeedToSatirize: Santorum: Liberals ‘make it uncomfortable’ to shower at the YMCA

Why this particular creature continues to get news coverage is a matter of continued concern and befuddlement. The last time this humunculus stood for electoral office in his home state, the people who knew him best thrashed him like a rented mule, as he lost by double digit margins.  Proving that voters in Pennsylvania still maintain some capacity for discrimination between fact and fiction, which is more than we can save for this entity.

 

Former Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum recently told a group of students that they needed to fight for conservative values in “every aspect of your life” because liberals who support abortion rights even “make it uncomfortable” to shower at the YMCA if you disagree with their views.

In a video clip posted by Right Wing Watch on Tuesday, Rick Santorum told the group Students for Life that the truth would only win “if you have the passion, winsomeness and charity to bring to this debate, to bring it to your communities, to bring it to every aspect of your life.”

“You see, what the left does, what the pro-choice movement does is they just don’t focus on their little issue, they focus on everything they do and every aspect of their life,” he explained. “They make it uncomfortable for students who come to Austin to shower at a young men’s Christian association YMCA gym.”

“Because they live it. They’re passionate. They’re willing to do and say uncomfortable things in mixed company. They’re willing to make the sacrifice at their business because they care enough… They simply won’t give up. We have the truth and we give up! We have righteousness and we give up because it’s unpopular!”

Santorum exists as a political force largely because he can “energize the base,” otherwise tossed red meat to the evangelicals, Christian conservatives and Aryan brotherhood types who have managed to stuff themselves in the clown car of the drooling right. Yet, as Charles Pierce has observed about Scott Walker, “do not sleep on this one.” While we may snicker and shake our heads, this sort of divisive, us–against–them commentary serves to further poison an already toxic political climate.

_______________________________________

#NoNeedToSatirize: Nugent: ‘People who hate Ted Nugent hate freedom.’ 

We are thinking not. We’re thinking perhaps there are just people who hate Ted Nugent who hate Ted Nugent.

 

 For my money, this next item is the topper for the week:

Gun rights advocate and right-wing provocateur Ted Nugent lashed out on Saturday at critics of his recent remarks on race and protesters who are trying to have his Tuesday show in New Haven, Connecticut canceled. The New Haven Register quoted an interview with Maine AM radio station WGAN, Nugent said that slain Florida teen Trayvon Martin was a “gangster wanna-be” who was motivated by “bloodthirst,” and that the teenager got what he deserved.

“People who hate Ted Nugent hate freedom,” the rocker alleged. “Trayvon got justice.”

Martin said that Martin’s violent tendencies were to blame for the escalation of his confrontation with George Zimmerman. He also accused the teen of racism for calling Zimmerman a “cracka.”

Nugent called a group of petitioners who want his August gig at the nightclub Toad’s Place in New Haven canceled “subhuman numbnuts.” He said that the Obama administration and Department of Justice under Attorney General Eric Holder are “just bad people,” although, he said, it “pains” him to have to say so.

Connecticut petitioner Barbara Fair said that she and other protesters are against Nugent playing in the same state where the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre took place. She told the Register that Nugent’s views are not what the protest is about, but what he says on the national stage, including his racist rants since the George Zimmerman verdict, in which he blamed African-Americans for their own oppression. He also criticized Trayvon Martin’s parents, saying they should ask themselves why they raised a gangsta wannabe, Skittles hoodie boy.”

 Tracking the remarks of people like Da Nuge  makes an old man despair of being a member of the human race in what’s left of the United States of America.  Part of the endless, self-referential torrent of bullshit that passes for mass media these days depends on the Ted Nugents  and Ann Coulters and Michael Savages of the world saying things so outrageous that they pass the bounds of decency, thus further weakening the bounds of decency for the next  assault, as they drop their pants, squat down and squeeze out yet another opinion that would have been unthinkable to utter 20 years ago.

This franchise will be dormant for the next week, possibly two.  Family events, out-of-town visitors, and a beach wedding are at hand. Arrangements to make, fatted calves to slay, etc. And I have other articles in the queue that have suffered from lack of time to fully investigate and complete. So perhaps I will do that with the odd remaindered bits of time that I may find in the next week or so. I appreciate your indulgence; the hiatus may keep me from opening a vein.

Meanwhile, don’t forget that we operate a reasonably vibrant Facebook page, that reflects key postings on the diner forum, articles from the Diner blog, plus articles of interest from many usual suspects around the blogosphere at https://www.facebook.com/DoomsteadDiner.

Plus Kudos to JD for yeoman work in standing up the Diner Twitter feed, already vibrant with activity, and enough to make an old man get a twitter account. Damn it. Follow us on Twitter @doomstead666

–Surly1
@Surly01

Remember

Off the keyboard of George Mobus

Published on Question Everything on August 6, 2013

Discuss this article at the Epicurean Delights Smorgasbord inside the Diner

The Clearest Evidence of Lack of Sapience

This day represents what, for me, is the clearest evidence that the human species as currently constituted lacks sufficient sapience to manage its own cleverness. This day, in 1945, the Americans, ostensibly the good guys in WWII(!), dropped the atomic bomb on a civilian population in Hiroshima, Japan just to show them we meant business. Two days later, one demonstration not being enough, we dropped a second bomb on Nagasaki. That should show them.

We were clever enough to figure out how to split the atom and do so in an explosive device. But we were completely without wisdom in doing so. And by ‘we’ I mean all of humanity. Yes I know that there are many who believed that the wisest course of action, at that time, was to drop the bombs. It was “conventional wisdom” that doing so ended the war sooner and saved American lives. And conventional wisdom is just that – conventional. It is what the masses think. Unfortunately the masses are deeply foolish.

Homo sapiens was the first species to display a radically higher level of judgment, moral motivations, eusociality, language, and abstract symbolic reasoning. But even so it was not the epitome of sapience. I have often suggested that the truer species name should be ‘calidus’ (clever) or even ‘pseudo-sapiens’. But the latter is not quite right since the capabilities listed are related to the brain capacity of sapience. So, what humans possess isn’t ‘false’ sapience, it is just ‘weak’ sapience. It is too new a capacity to have been honed by evolution for its role in modulating cleverness.

The evidence has certainly mounted over the years. Now here we stand having painted ourselves into an energy corner and seriously modified the atmosphere, hydrosphere, soils, and biosphere to our own detriment (along with that of many, many of our fellow passengers on Space Ship Earth). What remains really remarkable to me is that we actually knew enough early on to have prevented or very much lessened the current crisis. In WWII we were wildly ignorant of so many aspects of atomic power, including the political evolution that ensued. We rushed in, propelled by war (another piece of clear evidence) where wise men would have feared to tread. The precautionary principle applied equally to then and the recent events. But this situation is worse because we have actually gathered sufficient scientific information about the consequences that we should have known better. And, to a large extent we did, and do, know better. But because our collective judgment puts money over all, we ignore our own knowledge.

Each Aug. 6th I remember Hiroshima and what it represents, not as an historical event, but as a window into the nature of humans as we are. I remain ever hopeful that our species can provide the seeds of a much more sapient species in the future. The current one is no longer fit for the environment it has created.

Knarf plays the Doomer Blues

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