Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Doomsday Approaches

In case somebody asks you for the time today, just tell them it's five minutes until doomsday.

So says the "the elite board of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists" which the Toronto Star tells us is "moving the minute hand on their Doomsday Clock closer to the fatal hour of midnight."

In case you haven't heard of the Doomsday Clock, the elite board of the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists created it back in 1947 as a way of warning us about the dangers of Nuclear Armageddon.

Reportedly the minute hand will be moved two minutes, from the current seven minutes to midnight to five.

I guess when the clock does officially strike midnight we will all turn into nuclear pumpkins or something.

Mind you, we really shouldn't be too fearful.

After all, back in 1953 the Doomsday Clock was set to two minutes to midnight, meaning we are actually three minutes safer today than we were 50 years ago.

Still we are supposed to take this as alarming news.

"This is a sober and highly alarming judgment by a group of people who are knowledgeable and experienced," said Nobel laureate John Polanyi, a faculty member in the University of Toronto's chemistry department.

Yeah, I guess the rest of us had no idea that this is dangerous world. Good thing a bunch of smart scientists are out there to point it out to us.

All this reminds me of an article American writer P.J. O'Rourke wrote a few years ago lampooning Nobel Prize winners who released a statement on how to solve the world's problems.
"Nothing in their statement indicates that the opinions of common men are worse or more foolish than the opinions of Nobel Prize winners," wrote O'Rourke.

"Let us have our international actions truly `legitimized by democracy.' When it comes to questions of `What is to be done?' let's ask any old person. Let's ask Mom. Mom says, 'Global warming or no global warming, it's still winter. Wear a hat.'"

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

The doomsday clock became completely meaningless when the enviro freaks took it over and added environmental disasters to the nuke threat.

Ron said...

A person in my office put up copies of the news story and exhorted that "we've got to do something about this!"

I did. I put up a copy of Gerry's comments and they have since become strangely silent....