Helen Caldicott: The Election

THE ELECTION

This is seen by many as a highly contentious mid-term US election, and not just for the people of the United States.

People in other countries like Australia watch apprehensively as the US political system is on the verge of unraveling and landing in the hands of people who have shown little in-depth understanding of the inordinate power and scientific sophistication of the present day world.

Indeed, will this election introduce a political climate conducive to a Sarah Palin presidency in 2 years?

From my perspective as a physician, deeply concerned about species extinction including that of homo sapiens over the next century, I can’t imagine how we will survive should these political prognostications be fulfilled.

Three issues which have worried me for decades now haunt my thinking.

1. Global Warming. The profound manifestations of ongoing global warming include permafrost melting, which could release millions of tons of trapped methane and carbon dioxide and double the present estimates of unmitigated temperature elevations. To add fuel to the global warming fire, the Tea Party and Republicans are now hugely funded by foreign and national corporations fanning the flames of climate skeptics.

2. Nuclear Winter. It is almost beyond belief to imagine the fair finger of Sarah Palin accessing the nuclear button but as Commander in Chief, that would indeed be her position. Does she know or understand that the US and Russia still have thousands of hydrogen bombs on hair-trigger alert ready to be launched with a three minute decision time by the US or Russian President? Does she understand that the almost simultaneous release of the these bombs would initiate the end of most life on earth through massive radiation doses, extreme catastrophic fire storms, virtual disappearance of the ozone layer and a short ice age induced by nuclear winter?

3. Nuclear Power. A huge conspiracy of silence has been perpetrated by the global nuclear industry in its quest to build hundreds more nuclear reactors around the world as a solution to global warming. Aside from the fact that the generation of atomic electricity adds substantially to global warming, an alarming recent publication by the New York Academy of Sciences titled “Chernobyl, the Consequences of the Catastrophe for People and the Environment” documented that the accident in 1986 has so far killed over 985,000 people from cancer in all nations affected by the radioactive fallout. Whereas the International Atomic Energy Agency which represents the nuclear industry predicted only 4000 deaths from Chernobyl. Have the Tea Partiers and Republicans read this report? Are people aware that the Academy of Sciences only printed 700 copies in 2010 of this outstanding scientific publication for which they charge $150 and they are reluctant to print more? Why?

It is imperative in this day and age that politicians understand the outstanding ecological threats to the planet.

From The Huffington Post

3 Responses to "Helen Caldicott: The Election"

  1. John Farmer  October 28, 2010 at 3:05 am

    Helen,

    Are you still telling people not to eat Heresy candy bars? I think you where recently telling a Dartmouth crowd that Pennsylvanian cows where producing radioactive milk due to the fallout of Three Mile Island and thus Heresy candy bars are dangerous. You have to say Helen that it is kind of strange that there are no legitimate scientific studies that back up your gloom and dome warnings about the bovine of Pennsylvanian. But that is what you do Helen you make anti nuclear fear mongering statements that have no scientific legitimacy. The funny thing is that after listening to you talk over the past decades I am positive that the Heresy bar thing does not even make it into your the top ten whacked out anti nuclear statements that have zero legitimacy.

    What did surprise me about your anti nuclear statement today is that you are actually citing a study conducted by genuine professionals. Honestly, I never heard you ever back up your anti nuclear statement with any legitimate science. So let me be the first to say well done lassie, well done indeed.

    But at last one needs to truly look at the study to find that it does not have much merit. Studies like the one you cite exaggerate causally relationships. The fact is that 20 percent of all people will have cancer regardless of Chernobyl. To gain legitimacy you must prove a spike above 20% and then link that rise to Chernobyl and this study does not do that.

    Don’t get me wrong Helen. Even though you cited a study that was flawed you at least cited a somewhat legitimate study and that is 1000 times better than making fear mongering cow hating statements that have no legitimacy whatsoever. So once again let me say well done.

    Jfarmer9

  2. Christina Macpherason  October 28, 2010 at 3:41 am

    I don’t think that Sarah Palin understands any of this. She seems quite uninformed, but a very popular media performer – a triumph of style over content.
    It is incomprehensible to many non-Americans, and probably many Americans, too – that so much coverage is given to the views of the Tea Party.
    It is understandable that USA, with 10% unemployment, and people in dire financial straits about their mortgages etc – has many angry and worried people.
    Today’s mainstream media, with the emphasis on personalities and drama, is fed by well-funded spin from corporate spruikers, who stand to gain from promoting fossil fuel and nuclear interests.
    People are not stupid, but are more easily manipulated when they are frightened, angry, and uninformed.
    Here’s hoping that quieter opinions will prevail, refuting the disinformation of the Tea Party. Dr Helen Caldicott is not alone, in her voice for common sense – but it would be good to hear from her, and others in the mainstream media.

  3. John Farmer  October 28, 2010 at 8:19 am

    The democrats getting the endorsement of “Dr.” Helen Caldicott is not a good thing. She is whacko. If she cared about the US Democratic Party she would stay as far away from US politics as possible. Seriously has anyone listen to hear speak before she is beyond left field. Simply put she is NUTS .

    Jfarmer9

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