Environment and Health
Supporters of nuclear power and nuclear weapons enjoy a number of intrinsic advantages over their opponents. The first is money. Atoms make for high stakes gambling. Anyone who wins a contract for bombs or electricity can make zillions. This means there’s lots of cash available for lobbying, bribes, and campaign contributions.
Occasionally, we Texans have a responsibility to explain our “Texanity” to befuddled out-of-staters.
Protecting the environment has billions of supporters worldwide. Unfortunately, they’re not the people who count. Earth’s biggest polluter, for example, is the U.S. military. Understandably, the Pentagon has higher priorities than saving the planet. Its job, pursued by means of global armed superiority, is to preserve its own dominance and to enhance the profitability of the military-industrial complex.
Sometimes chaos comes along as a wake-up call to humanity. Japan’s double-whammy earthquake-tsunami is overwhelmingly tragic. Being at the mercy of the total chaotic effect of the elements–able to be wiped out by a wave of water from the sea–is an insult to the arrogance of modern humanity that thinks it can insulate and protect itself with technological know-how from the calamities visited upon our earth by Mother Nature.
The great cautionary tale of the 19th century is Frankenstein, Mary Shelly’s novel. It’s the story of a brilliant scientist, Victor Frankenstein, who builds a monster out of spare parts and then breathes life into it.
OtherWords cartoonist Khalil Bendib compares Japan’s two nuclear disasters.
The last time our nation assessed the risks of hospitals was in 1999. The Institute of Medicine found that between 44,000 and 98,000 patients died each year from medical mistakes. Around a million others suffered injuries. Nonetheless, if you were sick, where else were you going to go?
Are cell phones having an impact on our brains?