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Lack of remorse over the nuclear devastation.   Share:  
Thrust of argument: Norman Pollack writes 'America believes itself the product of Immaculate Conception, nowhere more evident than in having global custodianship of nuclear weaponry, originally, exclusive possession and use, as though perhaps part of God's design, and later, when after 1949 that was no longer attainable, presumptive use as a moral right and, as with all armaments, possession of an overwhelmingly preponderant stockpile. The US had a giant head-start, Alamagordo, July 16, 1945, Hiroshima, August 6, 1945, Nagasaki, August 9, 1945, the latter two the only times used for the annihilation of human populations, all brought on by the presumably exigencies of war when unity of the Great Powers was imperative, yet already conceived as a warning to the Soviet Union, and hence even before World War II was concluded the beginning of the Cold War. American atomic policy, quickly shifting from a defensive to offensive posture, became under Truman a cynical mode of power politics aimed at the dissolution of wartime unity, his presidency which betrayed a gross personal ignorance and arrogance only rivaled by that of Reagan and G.W. Bush having therefore imperial ambitions fuelled by an obsessive, irrational anticommunism. Truman contributed to the climate of fear by his lack of remorse over the nuclear devastation and endeavor through the Baruch Plan to maintain the postwar US monopoly on the Bomb, as if to say America could be secure only when it has frozen into place the differential relationship, when it comes to dealing death, with others, a kind of ethnocentric/paranoid mental-set, enemies everywhere requiring and necessitating a total response'. Direction of resistance / implied resistance: Richard Feynman, one of Britain and the United States' greatest minds in my lifetime, has said (you can go and watch this on video) that he did the wrong thing, morally, by continuing to work on the atomic bomb after Germany had been defeated since there was no longer a threat.

 

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Removal of resistance: As I have written recently:

Feynman's assertion about NASA was that the management was like a stubborn ignorant child and the scientists had failed to assert themselves the way a parent could over a child. "How do we educate the child?" Feynman wondered, looking for a road to solving the puzzle. Musing, at any rate.

Feynman's assertion about atom bombs and nuclear weapons was that (a) he had been immoral and wrong to continue working on the bomb when Germany had surrendered and the threat of Hitler's using atom bombs was gone. It was not built to combat kamikaze pilots, in the view of its scientists. (b) Feynman felt that after the war he noticed that 'nothing had changed' and people were behaving 'just as they always did' and he felt that the existence of nukes/atom-bombs in a world where people were still prone to the stupid and ignorant mistakes etc that they always had been was one with a very short future - soon we would all suffer the consequences of nuclear war, he felt.

In the hands of such incompetents, incidents such as Fukushima or the widespread ignorance of science's actual position, collectively, insofar as one can be said to exist at all, on 'GMOs', would also, it is my theory, worry Feynman significantly. People to question (by reading what they have said about such matters) about this stuff could include Chomsky, perhaps with more of a pinch of salt sometimes David Attenborough and Stephen Hawking, because being put on a pedestal causes a higher error margin in a scientist, even a good one, even 'the best'. Feynman was perhaps an exception, or perhaps not - he admits himself that he messed up and was deeply in error and remorseful - by continuing to work on the bomb, which per se he hadn't really wanted to have anything to do with but shown that nazis could use such a bomb against them he understood that he had to protect society - but when Germany was defeated he should have stopped and he regretted not realising it at the time.

So returning to what Feynman would make of all the stupidness corporations are up to at the moment, along with militarised governments, the world over, I think it makes sense to refer to his criticism of NASA and his criticism of the existence of 'atom bombs' after the war was over. I think we should consider what he'd say about Fukushima and nuclear power in general, as well as his views on solar and genuinely 'clean' energy, with safety as the absolute priority always. Would he think we should restrict nuclear physics to established research facilities and find ways to keep corporate power away from decisions relating to such an important field of human knowledge?

The issue widens to so many others but above all climate change. What would Feynman's view be of the treatment of evidence by the world's corporations and thus by being in cahoots with them, the so-called 'liberal' media eg the Guardian or BBC or other broad sheets, generally speaking?

Feynman's views on titles and 'lapels' are an important thing to note also when deciding what the often-correct scientist would say about the way things are today. It doesn't matter who you are, what your name is, how clever you are, or anything else, when you make an assertion, what matters is whether or not it agrees with experiment/experience. Nothing else. That, in a nutshell, Feynman explains across the internet from beyond the grave to some 'small' but not insignificant audience, is the key to 'science'.
Unification: What to do? Well. Start, now, readers, by facing up to your duty to learn, understand and always use 'the scientific method'.
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References:

http://www.counterpunch.org/2015/07/14/eurocapital-vanquishes-greece-a-hard-dark-painful-future/

 

 

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