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Doomsday Clock moved closer to midnight

Posted by on Jan. 26, 2017 at 12:59 PM
  • 11 Replies
http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/01/26/511592700/the-doomsday-clock-is-now-30-seconds-closer-to-midnight?utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=npr&utm_medium=social&utm_term=nprnews


AMERICA

The Doomsday Clock Is Reset: Closest To Midnight Since The 1950s

January 26, 201710:08 AM ET
BILL CHAPPELL
Twitter

The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists announced during a news conference Thursday that its advisory group is moving the Doomsday Clock 30 seconds closer to midnight.
Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists
The minute hand on the Doomsday Clock ticked closer to midnight Thursday, as the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists said it's seeing an increase in dangers to humanity, from climate change to nuclear warfare. The group took the "unprecedented" step of moving the clock 30 seconds closer to midnight, to leave it at 2 1/2 minutes away.

The setting is the closest the clock has come to midnight since 1953, when scientists moved it to two minutes from midnight after seeing both the U.S. and the Soviet Union test hydrogen bombs. It remained at that mark until 1960.

"Make no mistake, this has been a difficult year," Rachel Bronson, executive director and publisher of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, said as the new setting was announced Thursday.


Explaining its move, the Bulletin's Science and Security Board said:

"Over the course of 2016, the global security landscape darkened as the international community failed to come effectively to grips with humanity's most pressing existential threats, nuclear weapons and climate change ... This already-threatening world situation was the backdrop for a rise in strident nationalism worldwide in 2016, including in a U.S. presidential campaign during which the eventual victor, Donald Trump, made disturbing comments about the use and proliferation of nuclear weapons and expressed disbelief in the overwhelming scientific consensus on climate change."
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The board criticized President Trump further, saying that "even though he has just now taken office, the president's intemperate statements, lack of openness to expert advice, and questionable cabinet nominations have already made a bad international security situation worse."

Last year, the Doomsday Clock's setting didn't change from 2015, when it jumped two notches to three minutes before midnight — the closest it had been to midnight since the early era of above-ground hydrogen bomb testing.

Created in 1947, the Doomsday Clock was conceived by scientists who had participated in the Manhattan Project. Initially seen as an indicator of the likelihood of disastrous nuclear conflict, it now also includes other threats, such as climate change, biological weapons and cyberthreats.

It's the first time in the Doomsday Clock's 70-year history that the advisory board has adjusted the clock by 30 seconds.

The decision to advance the clock was announced at the National Press Club, where speakers included board members former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Thomas R. Pickering and physicist Lawrence Krauss. A simultaneous event was held at Stanford University that featured California Gov. Jerry Brown, former Secretary of State George Schultz and former Defense Secretary William Perry.

"Facts are stubborn things," Krauss said, "and they must be taken into account if the future of humanity is to be preserved."

The Doomsday Clock, physicist Lawrence Krauss said at Thursday's event, offers "a rare opportunity to reach the global public directly." Urging members of the public to speak to their political leaders, he added that important decisions about humanity's future shouldn't be left to a few men.

"President Trump and President Putin, who claim great respect for each other, can choose to act together as statesmen, or act as petulant children, risking our future," Krauss said.

His direct comments sparked the first question after board members had made their initial statements, as Tracy Wilkinson of The Los Angeles Times asked Krauss, "You said this shouldn't be left in the hands of one or two leaders making crazy statements. I know you mean Trump, but is the second person Putin?"

As Krauss answered yes, another panel member, Thomas Pickering, added, "Good guess."
by on Jan. 26, 2017 at 12:59 PM
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Replies (1-10):
romalove
by Roma on Jan. 26, 2017 at 1:01 PM
1 mom liked this

Well, that's not good enough for Trump.

He wants everything to be the biggest, hugest, most tremendous, greatest and therefore that clock must complete its mission and hit midnight.

Nothing else will do.

cynnie22
by Silver Member on Jan. 26, 2017 at 1:22 PM
1 mom liked this

So it looks like I have a right to be scared of this administration and several big wig scientist are too. 

ceeeeg
by Bronze Member on Jan. 26, 2017 at 1:31 PM
1 mom liked this

i wish i could say this comes as a surprise

it doesn't...

Luvnlogic
by Platinum Member on Jan. 26, 2017 at 1:35 PM
😱😱
momwriter
by Member on Jan. 26, 2017 at 3:08 PM
2 moms liked this
Absolutely. Many of us are. But I'm hoping that getting involved with groups like Indivisible (devoted to fighting the Trump agenda) will actually have some impact. I was supposed to meet with some group members to write to our senators today (but my youngest son and I are home sick). Our local chapter meeting is on Sunday.

Quoting cynnie22:

So it looks like I have a right to be scared of this administration and several big wig scientist are too. 

Ms.KitKat
by Ruby Member on Jan. 26, 2017 at 3:49 PM

Everone should read: One Second After by William Forstchen. It is a chilling fore-telling; granted it is a fictional novel but so easily and quickly it can come true, given the times we presently live in.

New York Times best selling author William R. Forstchen now brings us a story which can be all too terrifyingly real...a story in which one man struggles to save his family and his small North Carolina town after America loses a war, in one second, a war that will send America back to the Dark Ages...A war based upon a weapon, an Electro Magnetic Pulse (EMP). A weapon that may already be in the hands of our enemies.

Months before publication, One Second After has already been cited on the floor of Congress as a book all Americans should read, a book already being discussed in the corridors of the Pentagon as a truly realistic look at a weapon and its awesome power to destroy the entire United States, literally within one second. It is a weapon that the Wall Street Journal warns could shatter America. In the tradition of On the BeachFail Safe and Testament, this book, set in a typical American town, is a dire warning of what might be our future...and our end.

cynnie22
by Silver Member on Jan. 26, 2017 at 4:19 PM
1 mom liked this

My local area has weekly resist Trump meetings.  I have not attended one yet, but have been calling my elected officials to voice my concerns, but I feel it's pretty helpless.  

I did go to the weekly resist Trump website and some of the actions they suggest don't make sense to me.  Like calling representives for things outside of their control.  

Quoting momwriter: Absolutely. Many of us are. But I'm hoping that getting involved with groups like Indivisible (devoted to fighting the Trump agenda) will actually have some impact. I was supposed to meet with some group members to write to our senators today (but my youngest son and I are home sick). Our local chapter meeting is on Sunday.
Quoting cynnie22:

So it looks like I have a right to be scared of this administration and several big wig scientist are too. 


cynnie22
by Silver Member on Jan. 26, 2017 at 4:21 PM
1 mom liked this

EMP is a scary idea.  Everything is computerized these days- hospital charts, finances, educational information.  IF all that information went poof we would be in a world of hurt.

I feel our political climate right now is so dire I don't want to spend my free time reading a book that is going to feed into my state of mind. I need something light and carefree.  

But I will keep this book in mind...thanks for the recommend. 

Quoting Ms.KitKat:

Everone should read: One Second After by William Forstchen. It is a chilling fore-telling; granted it is a fictional novel but so easily and quickly it can come true, given the times we presently live in.

New York Times best selling author William R. Forstchen now brings us a story which can be all too terrifyingly real...a story in which one man struggles to save his family and his small North Carolina town after America loses a war, in one second, a war that will send America back to the Dark Ages...A war based upon a weapon, an Electro Magnetic Pulse (EMP). A weapon that may already be in the hands of our enemies.

Months before publication, One Second After has already been cited on the floor of Congress as a book all Americans should read, a book already being discussed in the corridors of the Pentagon as a truly realistic look at a weapon and its awesome power to destroy the entire United States, literally within one second. It is a weapon that the Wall Street Journal warns could shatter America. In the tradition of On the BeachFail Safe and Testament, this book, set in a typical American town, is a dire warning of what might be our future...and our end.


Ms.KitKat
by Ruby Member on Jan. 26, 2017 at 5:10 PM

I started reading it as a distraction from trump- now it's like I'm looking into our future.

I should have picked up fifty shade of-whatever it is lol no wait- scratch that-trump ruined that too...

Quoting cynnie22:

EMP is a scary idea.  Everything is computerized these days- hospital charts, finances, educational information.  IF all that information went poof we would be in a world of hurt.

I feel our political climate right now is so dire I don't want to spend my free time reading a book that is going to feed into my state of mind. I need something light and carefree.  

But I will keep this book in mind...thanks for the recommend. 

Quoting Ms.KitKat:

Everone should read: One Second After by William Forstchen. It is a chilling fore-telling; granted it is a fictional novel but so easily and quickly it can come true, given the times we presently live in.

New York Times best selling author William R. Forstchen now brings us a story which can be all too terrifyingly real...a story in which one man struggles to save his family and his small North Carolina town after America loses a war, in one second, a war that will send America back to the Dark Ages...A war based upon a weapon, an Electro Magnetic Pulse (EMP). A weapon that may already be in the hands of our enemies.

Months before publication, One Second After has already been cited on the floor of Congress as a book all Americans should read, a book already being discussed in the corridors of the Pentagon as a truly realistic look at a weapon and its awesome power to destroy the entire United States, literally within one second. It is a weapon that the Wall Street Journal warns could shatter America. In the tradition of On the BeachFail Safe and Testament, this book, set in a typical American town, is a dire warning of what might be our future...and our end.



nb34
by Platinum Member on Jan. 26, 2017 at 6:17 PM

Anyone with any live brain cells is afraid of this administration.

Quoting cynnie22:

So it looks like I have a right to be scared of this administration and several big wig scientist are too. 


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