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Doomsday Clock To Advance 283

Posted by kdawson
from the fire-next-time dept.
Dik Zak writes "Many news sites are reporting that the magazine Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists intends to move the hands of the Doomsday Clock on Wednesday 17 January. The clock was started at seven minutes to midnight during the Cold War and has been moved forward or back at intervals, depending on the state of the world and the prospects for nuclear war. Midnight represents destruction by nuclear war. It is not revealed in which direction the hands of the clock will be moved, but it should be safe to assume that they will move closer to midnight: the magazine cites 'worsening nuclear [and] climate threats.' The clock stood at two minutes to midnight when both the United States and the Soviet Union tested nuclear weapons in 1953. The farthest away from midnight it ever got was 17 minutes, in 1991 when both superpowers signed the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty. It currently stands at seven minutes to midnight."
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Doomsday Clock To Advance

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  • Midnight? (Score:5, Funny)

    by It doesn't come easy (695416) * on Saturday January 13, 2007 @06:40PM (#17596138) Journal
    So, is that Eastern Standard Time?
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      It is located in Chicago, so that would be Central Standard Time.
      • by benhocking (724439) <benjaminhocking@@@yahoo...com> on Saturday January 13, 2007 @06:59PM (#17596404) Homepage Journal
        That means those of us on Eastern Standard Time have already experienced Doomsday. (Psst, Central folk, his name is..., nah, let them experience it, too.)
        • PST (Score:5, Funny)

          by Ikcor (676683) on Saturday January 13, 2007 @10:53PM (#17598620)
          Damn, that means Doomsday will be tape-delayed on the west coast.
        • Actually we are getting dangerously close to a nuclear war. The US now has TWO Carrier Strike Groups in the Persian Gulf. The Gulf is getting so crowded that a US sub bumped into a Japanese tanker. Ted Koppel on NPR Friday evening said that people in the military have indicated that our assets in the Gulf are not useful for combating the insurgency in Iraq but are well suited for strikes on Iran. Koppel said that senior military personnel have told him that it is likely that the US will be at war with I
    • Oh, good, that gives us in Oregon 3 hours (2-hours mountain time) to get out of the way of the apocolypse.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by lag10 (667114)
      In Soviet Russia, doomsday clock advances you! (Sorry, but I just had to say that.)
  • Arbitrary? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Rhesusmonkey (1028378) on Saturday January 13, 2007 @06:41PM (#17596152) Homepage
    Is there some equation by which this is determined or is this another abstact measure of FUD that we could just as easily set to "Red" as 7 till midnight?
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      It looks to me as if what is significant is not what the time is (unless of course it is midnight), but instead how much the hand moves by. When a significant leap is made towards nuclear disarmament, it moves back significantly, vice versa when a situation appears to be escalating.

    • by GuyMannDude (574364) on Saturday January 13, 2007 @06:56PM (#17596362) Journal

      I doubt there is an equation involved. But I think one look at today's front page of slashdot justifies moving the hands a little closer to midnight:

      • A schoolteacher could get 40 years because her antivirus software subscription ran out.
      • A schoolboard rules that global warming is a "mere" scientific theory.
      • The US continues to use some idiot system of measurement based on some dead dude's foot.
      • The next Star Trek film is about Kirk and Spock -- The Early Years.
      • Shatner was allowed to break the news.

      If these aren't a sure sign of the apocalypse (especially the last item), I don't know what is.

      GMD

      • Re:Arbitrary? (Score:4, Informative)

        by WED Fan (911325) <akahige@@@trashmail...net> on Saturday January 13, 2007 @07:44PM (#17596938) Homepage Journal

        A schoolboard rules that global warming is a "mere" scientific theory.

        Actually, I live in the Seattle area:

        What they ruled on was that it was a scientific theory with more than one side to the story and that "An Inconvenient Truth" was not a dispassionate, non-partisan, objective look at the science involved. They were also concerned that none of the producers and Al Gore were scientists, and that showing it in a class without context would be a disservice to students.

        It was widely misreported, probably helped by the fact that the most vocal opponent to the film being shown is a nut-job zealot parent, and the fact that Seattle PeePee, uh, P-I ran an editorial as news and the fact that local right-wing radio really went ape-shit. But, that doesn't mean we have to get the reporting wrong here. Wait, this is /., I'm sorry, go about your business.

      • Uh, the Doomsday clock applies specifically to "doomsday" due to nuclear weapons. They are (or, at least, were at the time) a slightly more serious threat than a Star Trek movie.
      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by sgt_doom (655561)
        Although not on /.'s front page, that mad dog Bush Administration's scheduled attack on Iran (March or early April) should be considered as well.....
    • They just listened to too much Iron Maiden [lyricsfreak.com].

      (Seriously, though, I never bothered to listen to what that song was about. They're highbrow folks, those Maiden fellers, aint they?)
  • Hyperbole? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Gothmolly (148874) on Saturday January 13, 2007 @06:43PM (#17596186)
    So you have 12 hours to work with, and you start off at 17 minutes to midnight? Seems like a case of hyperbole to me - in that scale, the world is ALWAYS about to blow up in a nuclear war, so it quickly loses its impact.

    It's like holding the stupid "threat level" at yellow or orange for a long amount of time, eventually people accept it and begin to ignore it.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      That's kinda the point, when we have enough nukes floating around to blow up the planet several times over.
      • Even if every single nuclear device was detonated within a short period, I seriously doubt the planet would be blown up.

        Not too pleasant for a while, compared to how things are now, but far from "blown up".

        Discuss amongst yourselves.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Dilaudid (574715)
          Yes. Always the same shit from the environmentalists - "humans going to blow up the planet". Greenpeace actually said, in one of their 90s pamphlets "humans about to destroy all life on earth"... Idiots. We may be able to take care of small flightless birds, we may be pretty good at wiping out most of the fish stocks, but humans could never destroy life on earth.

          It's kind of instructive to think what we would have to do - start with the hard to reach - we need to kill all the life around the "smokers" at t

          • we may be pretty good at wiping out most of the fish stocks, but humans could never destroy life on earth.

            It's kind of instructive to think what we would have to do - start with the hard to reach - we need to kill all the life around the "smokers" at the bottom of the ocean, at the same time as carpet bombing the earth with nukes


            Cobalt bombs.

            No need to carpet bomb with conventional nukes.
            • by Dun Malg (230075)

              Cobalt bombs.

              No need to carpet bomb with conventional nukes.

              Cobalt nukes use cobalt instead of U235 as a tamper, subsequently they are much less powerful devices. All the conventional nukes weren't enough to cover the earth with fallout. Cobalt bombs less so. Szilárd was likewise engaging in hyperbole when he said cobalt bombs could destroy all life on earth. Even granting the impossibility of covering the surface of the earth with cobalt 60, there are plenty of forms of life which are largely unperturbed by the amount of radiation you'd see.

        • by EvanED (569694) <evaned.gmail@com> on Saturday January 13, 2007 @09:08PM (#17597730)
          At least one person agrees with you:


          Things which will NOT destroy the Earth: ....
          * Detonating all the nuclear weapons ever created simultaneously, either all at one location or strategically placed around the globe. This will irradiate pretty much the entire globe and kill an awful lot of people, animals and plants, but will actually destroy very little of the planet itself.

          How to Destroy the Earth [qntm.org]
        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by Propaganda13 (312548)
          Sure, if you just drop bombs randomly, we probably couldn't blow up the planet. Give them to me and I'm sure I could split this sucker in half. Am I restricted just to using them on Earth or can I use them in space too?
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by solevita (967690)
      You Slashdotters are all the same; the only way to win against you guys is by not playing!
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      It's a metaphore to illustrate the danger posed by nuclear weapons. It is not supposed to be a "threat level"-o-meter, but basically an indicator of what changes are worth, that we're never gotten further than 17 minutes on the scale of 12 hours of shades of nuclear weapon danger since the clock was built.

      It's kind of like illustrating the age of the planet as 12 hours and the appearence of humanity and civilization as the last minute/second whatever...
      • Re:Hyperbole? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by The One and Only (691315) <[ten.hclewlihp] [ta] [lihp]> on Saturday January 13, 2007 @06:58PM (#17596400) Homepage
        It's kind of like illustrating the age of the planet as 12 hours and the appearence of humanity and civilization as the last minute/second whatever...

        Except without any basis in mathematical fact or measured reality.

        • Re:Hyperbole? (Score:4, Insightful)

          by A beautiful mind (821714) on Saturday January 13, 2007 @07:10PM (#17596510)
          Please note, that I used the word metaphore. In this, the clock is similar to a work of art, it has meaning. It calls attention to an important issue by using a metaphore and you're asking where is the mathematical fact or measured reality in it?

          The problem it points to does have mathematical facts and is consistent with reality aka it exists. It is a mathematical facts that governments around the world have enough nukes that it can display all civilisation on earth and potentially wipe out the human race. It is a mathematical fact that more and more governments are capable of using nuclear weapons. It is part of reality that those who aquired nukes recently are not the sanest people around, like Kim Il - if we can believe the reports about the test they carried out which I'm not sure I do.
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by Dun Malg (230075)

            Please note, that I used the word metaphore. In this, the clock is similar to a work of art, it has meaning.
            It might be metaphor, but since it's scientists setting the time on a clock without any mathematical basis, it also counts as hyperbole, FUD, and propaganda. They are using the trappings of science to make hay out of their personal political beliefs.
      • by malsdavis (542216)
        The clock implies that for 53 years now we have been "minutes away from total world destruction". To me that's not metaphorical, it's plain exaggeration. Why 7 minutes? Why not 7 seconds? The entire system is without any scientific basis yet it is presented with precise and fluctuating figures as if it was based on real research.

        It's this sort of crap that scares the idiot majority into supporting wars "in the name of peace" (as all wars always are) in the first place.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      In TFA it does specifically state that "It uses the analogy of the human race being at a time that is a "few minutes to midnight," They have, at best, sixty minutes to work with, butin common parlance you tend to say "past" instead of "to" before half past the hour and so it could probably be argued that half past eleven would mean "no chance whatsoever," though they would most likely use eleven o'clock because they could symbolically move the hour hand.

    • by topham (32406)

      If people had known about a few of the instances where it was up to an individual whether we would have a nuclear holocaust the clock would have been sitting at 1 minute to midnight.

      And if you want the truth, it wasn't hyperbole.

      If you search Slashdots own archive you will find out that the passcodes required to trigger a launch were preset at default values which allowed them to be basically bypassed, and an instance where the Soviets were confused enough that someone could have signaled there were incomin
    • Re:Hyperbole? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by gsn (989808) on Saturday January 13, 2007 @10:04PM (#17598222)
      That most people live their daily lives blissfully ignorant of the dangers of nuclear weapons is entirely irrelevant. I don't think most people have a sense of scale for what a nuclear weapon can do. Therefore, the risk of a nuclear war is meaningless to them. Worse, I've heard and met some people who believe it won't be any worse than a conventional war, and are quite happy saying nuke Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, and while you are at it, N. Korea. Sure most people ignore risks and only react after something happens. The trouble with a doomsday scale nuclear war is there isn't an after. Perhaps if you kept that in mind it wouldn't lose so much of its impact.

       
      • Watch Threads. (Score:3, Informative)

        by thealsir (927362)
        For anyone who is curious as to how the world would end up after a nuclear war, watch the movie Threads [imdb.com]. It should lay any and all questions to rest.
  • by A beautiful mind (821714) on Saturday January 13, 2007 @06:44PM (#17596202)
    Jack Bauer will disarm the russian ICBM 10^-23 second before it detonates, so we haven't got anything to worry about!
  • by 10100111001 (931992) on Saturday January 13, 2007 @06:45PM (#17596224)
    I'm sick of waiting for the return of my deity.
    • by Matt Edd (884107) on Saturday January 13, 2007 @06:49PM (#17596268)
      Hey! Some of us don't have a deity so keep it down.
    • by HappySqurriel (1010623) on Saturday January 13, 2007 @07:11PM (#17596522)
      I don't know ...

      Lately I've been looking into the history of man kind and it seems like at any point in time people were certain that the end of the world was only a generation or two away.

      I think it is about time everyone started to ignore anyone who claimed the world was about to end and listened to more rational voices.
      • by ElephanTS (624421)
        But it is slightly different when the world's effectively rigged up to blow at the touch of a button or two.

        Even though the 'traditional' war threats are not present today it doesn't mean that part of our history is resolved and put away. Personally I'm not particularly worried about nuclear weapons, bigger threats I see in biowarfare and climate change.
      • "...it seems like at any point in time people were certain that the end of the world was only a generation or two away."

        Yes, there have always been doom-sayers who talk of the wrath of God and the day of judgement. However, for the last 50yrs or so we have had the potential to create our own apocolypse independently of any disgruntled God(s).

        "I think it is about time everyone started to ignore anyone who claimed the world was about to end and listened to more rational voices."

        What is "irrational" i
    • by Kingrames (858416)
      Ringman, is that you?

      ( http://pw1.netcom.com/~rogermw/ADnD/IUDC1.html [netcom.com] )
  • Preemption (Score:5, Funny)

    by ewg (158266) * on Saturday January 13, 2007 @06:53PM (#17596328)
    Some superpower or another needs to preemptively attack and destroy this doomsday clock before it hurts someone.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 13, 2007 @06:55PM (#17596348)
    Suddenly I realize where the song title comes from.
  • DST? (Score:3, Funny)

    by aztec rain god (827341) on Saturday January 13, 2007 @06:58PM (#17596390)
    Wouldn't this be a good reason to get rid of daylight savings time?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 13, 2007 @06:58PM (#17596394)
    new pressure from climate change for expanded civilian nuclear power that could increase proliferation risks.

    These guys are not claiming doomsday from climate change.

    And despite the increase of proliferation and individual threats, the global doomsday we legitimately feared in the 80's is long gone.

    I think proliferation in the Middle East will bring some long needed maturity to those ridiculous tribal governments or be self-limiting. Bad for some cities, but not global conflict. India-Pakistan nukes may have even calmed that situation. Mutual destruction pacts might actually work.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by NeutronCowboy (896098)
      Mutually Assured Destruction works if both people in control of the Big Red Button are semi-sane, understand the consequences of pushing that button and are interested in self-preservation, or at least the preservation of a good chunk of their people.

      However, I can say without a doubt that there are plenty of people who do not have any of these characteristics, including Americans. MAD is far too unstable a concept to be institutionalized. I'd much rather have no nukes than be the only one to have them. It
      • by halivar (535827)
        However, I can say without a doubt that there are plenty of people who do not have any of these characteristics, including Americans.

        People have been saying this for 40-odd years. Having successfully concluded a nuclear-armed cold war, this statement sounds like a stale cliché. MAD worked fine, and we and the Soviets turned out not to be the raging psychopaths everyone thought we were.
        • by NeutronCowboy (896098) on Saturday January 13, 2007 @10:03PM (#17598218)
          Mmhh.... let me rephrase that for clarity.

          However, I can say without a doubt that there are plenty of people who do not have any of these characteristics, including many Americans.

          There, better.

          Yes, Kennedy and Khrushchev did very well not to go down the hardline path. But we won't get lucky every time.
          • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

            by halivar (535827)
            I suppose one president is luck; but nine presidents is a pattern. We had national leaders that ranged from right-wing TFH's to bleeding heart liberals, and nine out of nine presidents (including Reagan, ridiculed in his own time for being a nuke-loving war-monger ["Land of Confusion", I loved that video]) did not press the button. Ditto for the Soviet Union. I don't believe the relative calm of the Cold War was a fluke; MAD was a diplomatic strategy designed to give us an excuse not to go to war in circums
    • I think proliferation in the Middle East will bring some long needed maturity to those ridiculous tribal governments or be self-limiting. Bad for some cities, but not global conflict. India-Pakistan nukes may have even calmed that situation. Mutual destruction pacts might actually work.

      The assumption is that a huge amount of power (i.e. the power to destroy the world) will make people behave in a more rational manner. First of all, that's a pretty big risk to take. The super powers that have nuclear capa
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        Take a look at Pol Pot in Vietnam. He had full control over the lives of many of the citizens of Vietnam and yet he killed millions of them.

        I think the Cambodians would be very surprised to learn that Pol Pot killed a bunch of Vietnamese too.

        Seriously, if you're going to use historical analogies to bolster your arguments, you should at least try to get the elementary facts right.
    • "And despite the increase of proliferation and individual threats, the global doomsday we legitimately feared in the 80's is long gone."

      The imaginary fears we had are long gone. The legitimate fears are worse, not least because in the 80's we were fighting proxy wars on the borders of a nuclear power. Now we're fighting direct land wars on the borders of not one but several nuclear powers.
  • by Sargeant Slaughter (678631) on Saturday January 13, 2007 @06:59PM (#17596408) Homepage
    I was listening to an interesting radio show out here in San Diego yesterday (The Dangerous Dick and Scibba show) and they were talking about the 20K troop increase as a way to get ready to go into Iran (a nuclear power). People were guessing that Bush/Cheney/and company want to try and neutralize the Iranian threat before leaving office. Me thinks this might be related...
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by twiddlingbits (707452)
      Dangerous Dick indeed, as he has very little brain...20K troops isn't enought to do anything, it's really just more to stablize the Baghdad area and maybe do some border patrol. Plus it is mostly reservists and National Guard which are NOT the top troops to use in any "invasion". There is just as much crap coming in from Syria as Iraq but no one ever mentions "invading" them. Anything that is being done now by the US in Iran is likely a black operation run by the CIA and you'll never hear about until 20 yrs
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      Iran is not a nuclear power. It does not even have nuclear power stations. The threat to the world derives from US politicians presenting such countries as a menace in order to be able to launch aggressive wars.
      • The threat starts with EU businesses with no ethics selling parts and plans for nuclear reactors to extremist nations in the name of profit. I'm certainly not against profit but there has to be some things that are just wrong to do for money. When someone sponsors those who say they hate you and have the goal of seeing your nation wiped out you have to take seriously the fact that nuclear weapons are one of the best ways to accomplish that goal. Or are you a supporter of state sponsored Terrorism as long
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by dbIII (701233)
      and they were talking about the 20K troop increase as a way to get ready to go into Iran

      Can't control things in Iraq and Afganistan so start a new war? Somebody shut Kissenger up or stop people listening to that corrupt old idiot - this didn't work last time either.

      I hope the new winds of change don't just turn into a draft.

  • by paj1234 (234750) on Saturday January 13, 2007 @07:09PM (#17596500)
    Now is a good time to read and print...

    The good news about nuclear destruction
    http://www.wnd.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=516 48 [wnd.com]

    What to do if a nuclear disaster is imminent!
    http://www.ki4u.com/guide.htm [ki4u.com]
  • by timeOday (582209) on Saturday January 13, 2007 @07:12PM (#17596540)
    A nuke or two going off in the US would be terrible. But let's be glad we don't face annihilation today like we did during the cold war. Think about it, at the time there was a real risk of humanity being set back a thousand years, or according to some theories even disappearing. Terrorism is nothing next to that. They have nothing like the numbers of weapons or delivery systems to do what we or the Russians could do. India and Pakistan doesn't have them, and N. Korea doesn't have them. People just aren't comfortable without a certain amount of upset, and they enlarge or shrink whatever troubles they face to fill that void.
    • People just aren't comfortable without a certain amount of upset, and they enlarge or shrink whatever troubles they face to fill that void.
      Also called progress...
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Strangelove: I would not rule out the chance to preserve a nucleus of human specimens. It would be quite easy...heh, heh...(He rolls his wheelchair forward into the light.) at the bottom of ah...some of our deeper mineshafts. Radioactivity would never penetrate a mine some thousands of feet deep, and in a matter of weeks, sufficient improvements in drilling space could easily be provided.

      President: How long would you have to stay down there?

      Strangelove: ...I would think that uh, possibly uh...one hundred ye
    • by ozbird (127571)
      A nuke or two going off in the US would be terrible. But let's be glad we don't face annihilation today like we did during the cold war.

      Unless they were US nukes, I fully expect Dubya to launch retaliatory strikes against the Axis of Evil, or whomever he believes was responsible. Just because the Cold War is "over" doesn't mean that those with their fingers on the button will be any more rational than before.
    • by niktemadur (793971) on Sunday January 14, 2007 @06:00AM (#17601062)
      But let's be glad we don't face annihilation today like we did during the cold war. Think about it, at the time there was a real risk of humanity being set back a thousand years, or according to some theories even disappearing.

      Two words for you, sir: Vassily Arkhipov.

      This man, a commissioned officer in the soviet navy, was aboard a soviet submarine making it's way to the naval blockade imposed upon Cuba by the United States in October of 1963. Unknown to the Kennedy government, the Kremlin had authorized soviet submarines to fire nuclear weapons at will, as long as the three main officers concurred unanimously.

      For a period of aproximately 24 hours, this particular soviet submarine was subjected to a barrage of depth charges. The level of tension was beyond the breaking point, they were running out of oxygen and the temperature was running at about 125 degrees farenheit, so the captain basically said "fuck it, we're at war, we have to launch". The other officer concurred, but Vassily Arkhipov, under incredible pressure, put his foot down and said NO. We can only imagine the amount of pressure Mr Arkhipov was subjected to (a Hollywood representation would be the film 'Crimson Tide'), but he held his ground, and when the submarine finally emerged to the surface, the world was not at war, so that they would have precipitated nuclear war if they had launched.

      Now consider this: the Secretary of Defense under Kennedy, Robert MacNamara, has been quoted as saying that he went to bed that night not knowing if there would be a world to wake up to next morning (I doubt he got much sleep), even as he did not know that the Kremlin had delegated authority to their submarine officers to launch nuclear weapons, MacNamara found out a quarter of a century later, in the late eighties.

      How's that for a close call nobody knew about?

      With that said, I have a question: why aren't there monuments to Vassily Arkhipov being erected all over the place?
      I hope you'll be happy to know that Mr Arkhipov died peacefully of old age in the late nineties. Bless you, Mr Arkhipov, I truly hope that your wife made the best borscht with oxtail in the world and that you slowly enjoyed every time you dipped it with your freshly baked bread, for years and years and years. Yum.
  • by laughingcoyote (762272) <barghesthowl.excite@com> on Saturday January 13, 2007 @07:14PM (#17596554) Journal

    From the summary...

    It is not revealed in which direction the hands of the clock will be moved...

    From TFA...

    The minute hand of the Doomsday Clock will be moved closer to midnight on January 17 (emphasis added).

    • Nevermind that, look at the title of the article!

      Doomsday Clock Will Move Closer to Midnight
      • Hrm. RTFT, would that one be?

        Slow Down Cowboy!

        Slashdot requires you to wait longer between hitting 'reply' and submitting a comment.

        It's been 13 seconds since you hit 'reply'.

        Chances are, you're typing with both hands. Please insert one thumb up your ass and try again.

  • The good news is they aren't advancing it to 12:00, the bad news is they are advancing it to 12:15.
  • by Tablizer (95088)
    Mechanical political blog? How quaint.
  • Scientists with long-standing political agenda to make political statement with clock metaphor. Big whoop.
  • Advance implies that it will get closer to midnight. The summary itself says that they don't know which way it will move yet.
  • Dumb (Score:2, Funny)

    by VanHalensing (926781)
    This is by far one of the dumbest ideas in the history of mankind. It'll just cause panic for no reason!
  • by dnc253 (1039198) on Saturday January 13, 2007 @09:02PM (#17597690)
    Where did they get their doomsday clock? On my former planet we got one of those, but we could never figure out how to program it, so it just blinked 12:00.

    ...And our world tragically came to an quick end......

  • It is not revealed in which direction the hands of the clock will be moved

    This story was on CNN early this morning and FYI the clock was advanced 2 minutes to 7 minutes to midnight. Old news. And not extremely nerdy or significant at that.
  • by arcade (16638) on Saturday January 13, 2007 @09:15PM (#17597798) Homepage
    I only remember the 80s.

    I remember, vividly, how my parents thought me that it was a cold war between the US and the Soviet Union.

    I remember the retorics. I remember the fear. I remember how I was told that we could be destroyed by nuclear weapons.

    I remember MAD.

    I was born in 1979.

    People born just 5 or 6 years later than me - do not remember this. They have never experienced the cold war. They can't remember it. They can't even understand the doomsday clock, the fear, the MAD uncertainty.

    I was 10 years old. I helped chop the Berlin wall down. Physically.

    People, just 5 years younger than me - don't understand what it was all about. They don't remember. .. and I'm still young.

    Now, this article is about the doomsday clock moving forward. From 17 minutes to midnight. Heh .. I don't have words for the stupidity. The world is relatively safe. The major disaster and major fear we have is from islamic terrorists sending a couple of planes into a building or two. A BUILDING OR TWO! THATS IT! Eighteen years ago we were afraid that New York as a whole would be anhilated in a few minutes. ALL of it. Not just a building or two on manhattan.

    And these guys want to move the hands forward on a clock of global doom. Right.

    It was right in the 80s. It's not right anymore. Move it backwards three or four hours, and it might be right. This way - it's just ridiculous.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Leftist Troll (825839)
      Heh .. I don't have words for the stupidity. The world is relatively safe. The major disaster and major fear we have is from islamic terrorists sending a couple of planes into a building or two. A BUILDING OR TWO! THATS IT! Eighteen years ago we were afraid that New York as a whole would be anhilated in a few minutes. ALL of it. Not just a building or two on manhattan.

      People living in Tokyo [wikipedia.org] or Tehran [wikipedia.org] might not share your sentiment.
    • by sploxx (622853)

      The world is relatively safe. The major disaster and major fear we have is from islamic terrorists sending a couple of planes into a building or two. A BUILDING OR TWO! THATS IT!

      You certainly have a point, but please also consider that several world leaders have at least played with broadening the military situations where nukes would be considered an apt tool. A 'local' war in th middle east would still kill tens of millions and have severe worldwide consequences. I would feel rather uneasy as an Israeli o

  • yawn (Score:4, Funny)

    by Al Al Cool J (234559) on Saturday January 13, 2007 @09:29PM (#17597906)
    Meanwhile, the Who-Still-Gives-A-Flying-Fig-About-The-Doomsday-Cl ock Clock remains stuck on flashing 12:00

A penny saved is a penny to squander. -- Ambrose Bierce

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