Hell

Like you, I’ve been literally fixated on the Fukishima catastrophe since it began. Stay away from all American broadcasts – NHK, BBC and yes, Al Jazerra are the best news sources. Just when you pray it will get better, it gets worse. Three reactor explosions already and now a fourth reactor on fire, which has been thankfully extinguished. But there is a definite dangerous radiation leak with rising levels. The TEPCO press conference was astonishing – the officials bowed and apologized for the problems; in Japan, you know you’re fucked. The reporters were hard and relentless, demanding answers to their absolutely empty announcements. It’s very clear they have no control over the plant anymore. Hopefully the seawater will work but it seems to not have at this point. And the insistence TEPCO had it initially under control, refusing offers from America for help (until now) will be seen as an example of hubris and possibly fear. I know I’m scared shitless. Yet I sit in a warm cafe, surrounded by chatting drinkers, Sinatra singing about that Summer Wind and feel guilty about the good things I’m waiting for. We’re so lucky. For now. I know that whatever happens from this, I’ll be devoting more time to stop the construction of these nuclear energy time bombs. Greenpeace is a good start.

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11 Responses to “Hell”

  1. oh that photo is heartwrenching, those precious darlings. all the people who’ve died terribly, and survivors who’ve watched helplessly as their loved ones were swept away, and those now seaching thru the rubble for their people, not knowing where they are – it must be the worst feeling in the world. i can’t even fathom it.

    i keep thinking a nuclear meltdown will be averted, that the people of japan must be spared more hardship beyond the obliteration they already have to face, but every time i tune in to see what’s happening it’s worse rather than better, just… mind-boggling, like a bad movie.

    maybe this horrible disaster will have some sort of postive impact if it means a re-appraisal of the proliferation of nuclear energy, an unnatural and potentially lethal source of power. we are blessed and surrounded the world over by unlimited sources of natural energy – the sun, wind, oceans, rivers – just waiting to be harnessed, natural energy without deadly polutant by-products that can not be disposed of safely but merely dumped and ‘hidden’ to inevitably poison the planet for later generations. our future doesn’t have to be sold to the lowest bidder and beholden to toxic elelments and lethal by-products for us to live comfortably, what’s it going to take to put us on the right course? armageddon? it sorta feels that way at the moment.

    i’m not so naive to think my little corner of the world is immune, but when i drive by this it never fails to give me a sense of pride:

    http://www.google.co.uk/imgres?imgurl=http://www.disarmsecure.org/images/wellington.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.disarmsecure.org/publications/papers/The_Value_of_National_Nuclear_Free_Law.php&usg=__oeXPnNaUYo9wBzErTPUyfJoW5tg=&h=341&w=657&sz=45&hl=en&start=13&sig2=rRBQxJk7xzKhJGVVE-OkgA&zoom=1&tbnid=P4jRc8Mamhu2-M:&tbnh=98&tbnw=188&ei=6yZ_TfTlPJKosQPJmpX1BQ&prev=/images%3Fq%3Dimages%2Bof%2B%27nuclear%2Bfree%2Bnew%2Bzealand%27%2Bsigns%26um%3D1%26hl%3Den%26sa%3DX%26rlz%3D1T4ADBS_enNZ275NZ275%26biw%3D1006%26bih%3D630%26tbs%3Disch:1&um=1&itbs=1&iact=rc&dur=328&oei=4yZ_Ta6eJYn2swPehIjbBQ&page=2&ndsp=12&ved=1t:429,r:0,s:13&tx=83&ty=40

    • wow i can honestly say that is the longest link i have ever seen, for just a photo!

      • christian Says:

        That link might be a record — and New Zealand is starting to look like a great place to live — I’m not happy with Obama’s earlier announcement of funding more nuclear reactors — and why is the government subsidizing these guys and why don’t the GOP get angry over that? Given all we know and then these idiots don’t understand it’s cheaper to pay an extra billion for safety rather than death, destruction and trillions later. California has reactors here on serious fault lines and they’re only built to withstand a 7.9 – this is INSANE. They should go to fucking 11!

        Things are looking somewhat better in Japan but then another quake and snow…the radiation are supposedly levels falling but I don’t trust the government nor corporate shills.

        And by Gawd, if this doesn’t put the Republicans and nuke-tolerating Democrats into a corner, nothing will.

  2. I accidentally surfed past NBC News last night and they were re-running Ann Curry’s Today Show spots where she’s basically running around turning the whole mess into an episode of American reality TV. It made me sick to my fucking stomach.

    • christian Says:

      Watching American TV for the news is that way lies madness zone. Even within this disaster, their need to chatter non-stop provide half-opine ignorant information with the usual shills for the nuclear energy. NHK is calm soothing and free of the ADD chyrons and bells and whistles that hypnotize viewers. BBC is two guys at a desk from 1986, but plenty of unfiltered news.

      • I’ve been watching Beeb and NHK too. The former is still kind of on my shit list for reporting on Tiger Woods’ sex life, but they’re still better than the infotainment that passes for news in this country. Oh Howard Beal, where are you now?

  3. Hi Christian

    Thanks for you impassioned post. Like you, I think nuclear power needs to go back to where it came from, the fantasies of techno-modernist engineering geeks with penis envy.

    The best description of the birth of the nuclear industry is by Robert Jungk in “brighter than a thousand suns”, in which we learn how Oppenheimer was subjected to McCarthy’s witch trials, and how Edward Teller would stop at nothing to develop the ultimate bomb, a perverse sort of ambition that could only be cultivated by a military industrial complex and technological sub-culture thoroughly anti-life.

    For years nuclear power has been un-insurable, one reason why most investors will not touch it with a ten pole radioactive rod of isotopes. Nor is it a ‘clean’ form of power, the radioactive waste lasts for hundreds of thousands of years on a planet that is constantly shifting. This goes against the very foundation of a precautionary principle. Finally, contrary to the myth propagated by the industry, the fuel is not limitless, it is actually dependent on a continuous source of high grade uranium that is running out. Estimates range from 25 years on the low end to 50 years on the optimistic end. Why would an investor want to spend 10 years building a plant that may last 15-25 years before running out?

    There are already many alternative energy sources that we simply need to get on board with.

    One of the first images that came into my mind watching the disaster was the sequence from Akira Kurosawa’s film Dream, titled “The Weeping Demon”.

    Nuclear is one of the pillar of the dystopian imagination. We can do better.

  4. Well said, christian.

  5. *claps*

    let’s get down to business, folks

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