Wednesday, December 13, 2006
Rant on the Obscenity of Ignorance
Digby had a post on Tuesday with observations on the ignorance of politicians, in particular senators and representatives responsible for national security, yes and even [especially?] the president.
Such ignorance is not only appalling but outright dangerous and in at least one case, apparently deliberate. This especially applies to the most basic knowledge about the Middle East, as revealed by their own statements. Many of this gaggle of klutzes still don't get the difference between Shia and Sunni -- and that in a place in the world which has a most critical bearing on our national security.
Jeeze, on the eve of the Iraq invasion, as he clapped his hands together and exclaimed, "Boy! This sure feels good!" just before he announced the start of the new TV show, "Iraq Cakewalk", Bush didn't even know there were such Sunnis and Shias!
Digby makes the point that if you have been reading newspapers over the years and have at least a passing interest in reality, some information ought to ooze into your awareness.
I'd like to take this a bit further and bet the knowledge of these same people about the consequences of even a "limited" nuclear war is also minimal. Furthermore I'll bet they are ignorant of why and what sort of danger radioactive material presents. Heck, the fact that they deny the obvious dangers of Uranium Lite (aka Depleted Uranium) proves they don't know, comprehend or understand -- either that or they are shape-changing alien lizard monsters...
A "moderate" exchange of nuclear weapons of, say, 50 atomic bombs between, say Pakistan and India, just to pick an example,would have immense, terrible and lasting effects on global climate -- so much so that, if I knew for certain that it was for certain to happen I might say let's go all out and emit as many greenhouse gasses as we can as fast as we can.
I don't really mean it, of course, but still, it might mitigate some of the consequences of a "small" nuclear war.
When I was growing up back in Poosah City and got up at 4 in the morning to see the televised broadcast of a atomic bomb test nothing happened to climate and there were, over the years, before testing was done underground, many tests -- so, how could an exchange of 50 bombs between two warring nations affect the whole world?
There is a difference between running a test with crash-car dummies and a busload of people driving off a mountain road.
Similarly, there is a difference between a hundred atomic tests over a couple of decades and fifty explosions over a few hours or days in a war.
In a war, cities are destroyed, there are firestorms and large amounts of dark particles are sent up into the atmosphere where they will remain for years, even a decade, blocking out sunlight and dramatically lowering the earth's temperature.
That sort of thing is common knowledge -- but not to our leaders, to whom is but a detail or a theory.
In any case, they know that if the balloon goes up and the shit comes down, they will go to shelters with underground swimming pools, movie theaters and, probably, even golf courses.
I'll return later and rant about how radioactive material can be described as both safe and a great danger to both health and life -- it all depends on whether you want to know the truth or just to be able to bend it to suit a purpose.