From: "Russell D. Hoffman" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Re: Moyers (PBS) page on Davis-Besse nuke; RDH comments, + humor + Jack Shannon
David Lochbaum, of the UNION OF UNCONCERNED SCIENTISTS, was a DISGRACE TO HUMANITY on Bill Moyers' PBS show about the problems at the Davis-Besse nuclear reactor last night (Friday, January 24th, 2003).
Presenting Lochbaum's viewpoint should NOT BE CONSIDERED giving the "opposition" a chance to speak on nuclear power, especially by MEDIA who are pretending (either to themselves, or to others, or both) that they want to present a balanced report!
Lochbum has got NO MORE SENSE THAN -- and says practically the EXACT SAME THINGS AS -- RALPH BEEDLE AND RICHARD MESERVE. This was clear from his statements last night, including his stating UNEQUIVOCALLY that the UCS ("Union of UnConcerned Scientists") is not opposed to nuclear power.
WELL, THEY SHOULD BE.
AND THEY USED TO BE.
He also INSULTED the LOCAL (OHIO) activists, claiming their opposition to DAVIS-BESSE reopening is due to NIMBYISM. (I don't think he used that word, but the message was clear.)
He SHOULD be accusing the plant workers of greed, instead!
DAVID LOCHBAUM -- GET AN EDUCATION OR GET OUT!
P.S. It may just be coincidence (although frankly, I doubt it!) but my web site was down all last night while Bill Moyers' show was airing. "Router went down" is what they told me.
P.P.S. Attached below are a two "humorous" items, and series of correspondences sent in by Jack Shannon, USMC ret.
SUBJECT Re: [greenaction] IMMEDIATE ATTENTION NEEDED-HIGHLY CONFIDENTIAL:
At 10:12 AM 1/23/2003 , bluespin <email@example.com> sent this:
URGENT ASSISTANCE - FROM USA
IMMEDIATE ATTENTION NEEDED :
FROM: GEORGE WALKER BUSH
202.456.1414 / 202.456.1111
DEAR SIR / MADAM,
I AM GEORGE WALKER BUSH, SON OF THE FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED
STATES OF AMERICA GEORGE HERBERT WALKER BUSH, AND CURRENTLY SERVING AS
PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. THIS LETTER MIGHT SURPRISE
YOU BECAUSE WE HAVE NOT MET NEITHER IN PERSON NOR BY CORRESPONDENCE. I
CAME TO KNOW OF YOU IN MY SEARCH FOR A RELIABLE AND REPUTABLE PERSON TO
HANDLE A VERY CONFIDENTIAL BUSINESS TRANSACTION, WHICH INVOLVES THE
TRANSFER OF A HUGE SUM OF MONEY TO AN ACCOUNT REQUIRING MAXIMUM
I AM WRITING YOU IN ABSOLUTE CONFIDENCE PRIMARILY TO SEEK YOUR
ASSISTANCE IN ACQUIRING OIL FUNDS THAT ARE PRESENTLY TRAPPED IN THE
REPUBLIC OF IRAQ. MY PARTNERS AND I SOLICIT YOUR ASSISTANCE IN
COMPLETING A TRANSACTION BEGUN BY MY FATHER, WHO HAS LONG BEEN ACTIVELY
ENGAGED IN THE EXTRACTION OF PETROLEUM IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA,
AND BRAVELY SERVED HIS COUNTRY AS DIRECTOR OF THE UNITED STATES CENTRAL
IN THE DECADE OF THE NINETEEN-EIGHTIES, MY FATHER, THEN VICE-PRESIDENT
OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, SOUGHT TO WORK WITH THE GOOD OFFICES OF
THE PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF IRAQ TO REGAIN LOST OIL REVENUE SOURCES
IN THE NEIGHBORING ISLAMIC REPUBLIC OF IRAN. THIS UNSUCCESSFUL VENTURE
WAS SOON FOLLOWED BY A FALLING-OUT WITH HIS IRAQI PARTNER, WHO SOUGHT TO
ACQUIRE ADDITIONAL OIL REVENUE SOURCES IN THE NEIGHBORING EMIRATE OF
KUWAIT, A WHOLLY-OWNED U.S.-BRITISH SUBSIDIARY.
MY FATHER RE-SECURED THE PETROLEUM ASSETS OF KUWAIT IN 1991 AT A COST OF
SIXTY-ONE BILLION U.S. DOLLARS ($61,000,000,000). OUT OF THAT COST,
THIRTY-SIX BILLION DOLLARS ($36,000,000,000) WERE SUPPLIED BY HIS
PARTNERS IN THE KINGDOM OF SAUDI ARABIA AND OTHER PERSIAN GULF
MONARCHIES, AND SIXTEEN BILLION DOLLARS ($16,000,000,000) BY GERMAN AND
JAPANESE PARTNERS. BUT MY FATHER'S FORMER IRAQI BUSINESS PARTNER
REMAINED IN CONTROL OF THE REPUBLIC OF IRAQ AND ITS PETROLEUM RESERVES.
MY FAMILY IS CALLING FOR YOUR URGENT ASSISTANCE IN FUNDING THE REMOVAL
OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE REPUBLIC OF IRAQ AND ACQUIRING THE PETROLEUM
ASSETS OF HIS COUNTRY, AS COMPENSATION FOR THE COSTS OF REMOVING HIM
FROM POWER. UNFORTUNATELY, OUR PARTNERS FROM 1991 ARE NOT WILLING TO
SHOULDER THE BURDEN OF THIS NEW VENTURE, WHICH IN ITS UPCOMING PHASE MAY
COST THE SUM OF 100 BILLION TO 200 BILLION DOLLARS ($100,000,000,000 -
$200,000,000,000), BOTH IN THE INITIAL ACQUISITION AND IN LONG-TERM
WITHOUT THE FUNDS FROM OUR 1991 PARTNERS, WE WOULD NOT BE ABLE TO
ACQUIRE THE OIL REVENUE TRAPPED WITHIN IRAQ. THAT IS WHY MY FAMILY AND
OUR COLLEAGUES ARE URGENTLY SEEKING YOUR GRACIOUS ASSISTANCE. OUR
DISTINGUISHED COLLEAGUES IN THIS BUSINESS TRANSACTION INCLUDE THE
SITTING VICE-PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, RICHARD CHENEY,
WHO IS AN ORIGINAL PARTNER IN THE IRAQ VENTURE AND FORMER HEAD OF THE
HALLIBURTON OIL COMPANY, AND CONDOLEEZA RICE, WHOSE PROFESSIONAL
DEDICATION TO THE VENTURE WAS DEMONSTRATED IN THE NAMING OF A CHEVRON
OIL TANKER AFTER HER.
I WOULD BESEECH YOU TO TRANSFER A SUM EQUALING TEN TO TWENTY-FIVE
PERCENT (10-25 %) OF YOUR YEARLY INCOME TO OUR ACCOUNT TO AID IN THIS
IMPORTANT VENTURE. THE INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE OF THE UNITED STATES OF
AMERICA WILL FUNCTION AS OUR TRUSTED INTERMEDIARY. I PROPOSE THAT YOU
MAKE THIS TRANSFER BEFORE THE FIFTEENTH (15TH) OF THE MONTH OF APRIL.
I KNOW THAT A TRANSACTION OF THIS MAGNITUDE WOULD MAKE ANYONE
APPREHENSIVE AND WORRIED. BUT I AM ASSURING YOU THAT ALL WILL BE WELL
AT THE END OF THE DAY. A BOLD STEP TAKEN SHALL NOT BE REGRETTED, I
ASSURE YOU. PLEASE DO BE INFORMED THAT THIS BUSINESS TRANSACTION IS
100% LEGAL. IF YOU DO NOT WISH TO CO-OPERATE IN THIS TRANSACTION,
PLEASE CONTACT OUR INTERMEDIARY REPRESENTATIVES TO FURTHER DISCUSS THE
I PRAY THAT YOU UNDERSTAND OUR PLIGHT. MY FAMILY AND OUR COLLEAGUES
WILL BE FOREVER GRATEFUL. PLEASE REPLY IN STRICT CONFIDENCE TO THE
CONTACT NUMBERS BELOW.
SINCERELY WITH WARM REGARDS,
GEORGE WALKER BUSH
Rainforest Information Centre
Box 368 Lismore
61 2 66213294
CIA JOBS STILL AVAILABLE! APPLY TODAY! ALL WELCOME!
The following paragraph is apparently a REAL CIA job listing. I do have reservations about calling the CIA "Public Sector". -- rdh
Central Intelligence Agency
Number of Hot Jobs
The CIA supports the President, the National Security Council, and all who make and execute US national security policy by: Providing accurate, evidence-based, comprehensive, and timely foreign intelligence related to national security; and conducting counterintelligence activities, special activities, and other functions related to foreign intelligence and national security as directed by the President. What we stand for: Intelligence that adds substantial value to the management of crises, the conduct of war, and the development of policy. Objectivity in the substance of intelligence, a deep commitment to the customer in its form and timing. How we do our work: Personal and organizational integrity Teamwork throughout the Agency and the Intelligence Community. Total participation of an excellent and diverse work force. Innovating and taking risks to get the job done. Adapting to both a changing world environment and evolving customer needs Accepting accountability for our actions. Continuous improvement in all that we do.
Applications are being accepted TODAY. Additional qualifications include:
Must be willing to lie under oath. Especially to Congress, as this will be your main duty -- the goal all the underlings strive to some day achieve in service their President.
Must not take drugs except in the execution of one's duties, such as during infiltration, in preparation for infiltration, or while building up a tolerance in case of a sudden infiltration, or for research into the drug's effects, etc..
Must be capable of withstanding and administering torture. The CIA has strict rules for how to create "cooperation" among various captives, and sets the standards worldwide for both the humane -- and inhumane -- treatment of prisoners. Must be willing to knowingly release human beings in your captivity to other countries' less civilized military dictatorships, to be inhumanely tortured and then slaughtered like animals.
Must be capable of detecting dishonest CIA operatives in your midst. For every spy who is detected within the CIA organization itself, probably a dozen go undetected within, and 1000 more roam the streets, snooping out dirt on America. In some operations, perhaps as many as 1/2, or even most, of the CIA operatives are infiltrators, paid by Russia, Israel, China, France, Saudi Arabia, Great Britain (Yup! Even our best friends the Brits can't resist trying to get a piece of THIS pie!), Iran, Iraq, Turkey, India, Pakistan, Yemen, Argentina, Brazil, Germany, Afghanistan, Ukraine, Greece, Italy, Spain, Japan, both Koreas, Taiwan, Philippines, Australia, and (of course) Cuba.
The rest were gay, but they've been pushed out, or pot smokers, but they've been weeded out, or adulterers, but they've were booted out when they were caught on video tape in Las Vegas, or religious fanatics, who have yet to be outed, but should have been.
It must be recognized that as the assistants to the world's #1 military dictatorship's chief ruler, you will be expected to do a substantial number of "illegal" things. Don't let this worry you. The REAL power on this planet can manipulate stock markets, start and end wars, even crash airplanes filled with powerful people on board, and pretend it was a snowstorm, then cover the evidence!
Do you REALLY think GWB or any President pulls all that stuff off all by themselves? They wouldn't even know how! They've got help -- BIG HELP. That's where the CIA comes in. Licence to kill? That ain't the half of it, as the saying goes. You'll have a licence to buy and sell corporations, stock, land, even whole countries -- you'll have POWER. More than you ever dreamed you could have -- power you can ONLY have from a secretive cadre of lawless manipulators of economics, public opinion, scientific "facts", and even legal precedence! Better yet, a cadre culled from the finest Universities, and who are often also veterans of major past military campaigns with a fruit salad on their chest! Power, respect, money, security -- you ARE "National Security"! You know WHERE the secret atom-bomb-proof tunnels are. You have ACCESS CODES to get in them in an emergency. You've ALREADY been vaccinated for Smallpox and a dozen other things! You are in a special class of citizen now! As an electronic-key-code-carrying member of the Central Intelligence Agency, you can win trials by simply telling judges, behind closed doors, that you have "National Security information" which cannot be presented or argued against, or even mentioned in court, but which clearly convicts the person on trial! Now is that POWER or what!?
All this power -- and more -- can be yours.
So, if you're a white-collar, Harvard-educated Marine with a clean record, a good marriage, can pass a drug test when needed, can lie with the best of them, doesn't blink, and you have already read SYNERGETICS and SYNERGETICS II by R. Buckminster Fuller (these books are required reading in the CIA, just to prove you're an egghead with good intentions. And in the CIA, having a lofty goal excuses everything), then by all means, apply for the job.
Your country is counting on you to get in there and fight for the President, who can't lie to Congress all by himself -- he needs HELP, and that's where the CIA comes in.
This offer void where prohibited.
JACK SHANNON ON KAPL:
Subject: The Lies keep on Coming
To: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org,
It would appear that the DOE/NRC has no concept of the truth. Enclosed are a
series of letters sent to the Schenectady Daily Gazette, concerning a
Radioactive Parking lot built, at KAPL, during 1968. Jim Burns, a spokesman
for KAPL, just can't keep all of the lies straight, and has again succeeded
in putting his foot in his mouth.
First Letter by Burns
Page B2 Schenectady Daily Gazette December 9, 2002
Knolls Lab adding two guard posts
By MARILYN HIPP
NISKAYUNA - Rush hour on River Road has worsened lately not only because of
General Electric's $100 million expansion at its research and development
labs here, but also because of new construction at Knolls Atomic Power
Besides adding a new employee parking lot, KAPL is building two guard posts
at its east and west entrances on River Road.
"We're replacing temporary guard posts with permanent ones," KAPL spokesman
James Burns said. "We have had these temporary guard posts out there ...
since shortly after Sept. 11 2001."
Now operated by Lockheed Martin Co. under contract with the U.S. Department
of Energy, KAPL conducts research and development on Navy nuclear propulsion
Since the terrorist attacks, the local plant has undergone various security
enhancements, according to Burns.
In the past, visitors could drive into the parking lot and park and would not
encounter security until entering the building. "Right now you cannot drive
onto our site without going through our guard posts," Burns said.
Guards will continue to check cars and trucks at the vehicle barriers at all
First letter by Stater
Schenectady Daily Gazette
December 27, 2002
Letter to the Editor
Beware `hot' lot
Your Dec. 6 report that the Knolls Atomic Power Lab was building permanent
guard posts as security enhancements also noted that KAPL is adding a new
employee parking lot. Lest we forget, KAPL's record on building parking lots
is not too swift.
Their last attempt to build such a lot, circa 1968, put the Keystone Kops to
shame. First, they used radioactive soil for fill. Then they mistakenly built
most of the lot on someone else's property. When finished, they left the
parking lot unpaved, allowing radioactivity to be tracked into cars and
carried to employees' homes. And worst of all, they failed to inform
employees and their families about the radioactive presence for 20 years.
Could the new parking lot be déjà vu all over again? Not necessarily! Maybe a
little glow-in-the-dark radioactivity in the new parking lot would be a super
security enhancement for deterring potential terrorists; maybe even better
than two plush new guard posts.
ROBERT G. STATER
The writer is a licensed nuclear engineer.
Second Letter by Burns
Letter to the Editor
KAPL parking lot poses no health risk
This letter clarifies the facts with regard to a letter [Robert Stater]
printed in the Gazette on Dec. 27 about a parking lot at Knolls Atomic Power
In the early 1960s, fill dirt used to expand a small auxiliary parking lot at
KAPL inadvertently included some dirt containing low levels of radioactivity.
Nearly all of this dirt was promptly removed. A small portion of the fill
dirt at the outer fringe of the parking lot has trace amounts of
While detectable with sensitive survey instruments, the trace amounts are too
small and too dispersed to cause measurable radiation exposure or to pose
health concern to our employees or the public. For perspective, the average
amount of radioactivity in this fill dirt at the fringe of the parking lot is
much less than the amount of naturally occurring radioactivity in sodium-free
substitute table salt.
In the late 1980s, New York State independently surveyed the parking lot and
they also concluded that it did not present a health concern. Information
regarding this parking lot and other KAPL environmental information is
available to the public in the Knolls Environmental Summary Report, a copy of
which is available at the Niskayuna Branch of the Schenectady County Public
In summary, there is no health concern associated with the parking lot,
either now or in the past.
JAMES E. BURNS
The writer is a KAPL manager and spokesman. Return to Index
First Letter by Shannon/Stater -- The Lie exposed
January 17, 2003,
John P. Shannon
10 South Federal St.
The Daily Gazette
2345 Maxon Road Extension NY 12866
Schenectady, NY 12308
As per usual, KAPL spokesperson Jim Burns' clarification of the facts, this
time concerning the radioactive parking lot fiasco, is another truth-free
substitute for reality. Even so, Burns did not deny that KAPL actually built
a radioactive employee parking lot, with most of it ending up on someone
else's property; nor that unsuspecting employees were required to park in
this unpaved area for 20 years. Rather, Burns chooses to spin a yarn about
"trace amounts" of radioactivity on the "outer fringe" of the lot.
Burns' claim that most of the radioactive dirt was promptly removed is false.
The record shows that a program for cleanup of radioactively contaminated
areas was not initiated until 1979. A radiological survey of the parking lot
did not occur until 1984, which found radiation levels up to 28,000% above
the so-called KAPL soil release limit. The survey also established that, due
to the removal and transport of the contaminated soil and its subsequent
redistribution, the radioactivity was "well mixed."
In a June, 1988, editorial, "Negligence at Knolls", the Schenectady Gazette
chastised KAPL for its "irresponsible" actions with regard to the parking lot
and called for independent oversight of DOE plants. This oversight has never
happened, but is obviously still much needed.
John P. Shannon
Nuclear Physicist/Nuclear Engineer
rdh's response to David Lochbaum:
TO: "Dave Lochbaum" <email@example.com>
January 27th, 2003
Dear Mr Lochbaum,
Thank you for your email (shown below, with related correspondence).
I wouldn't worry too much about what the pro-nuclear types say if I were you, because they'll say ANYTHING to keep their industry going. OF COURSE Davis-Besse could have melted down, and you should not have to defend such a statement to anyone! But if the media won't put such a statement on T.V., so be it. Politicians and diplomats may compromise; but the truth remains forever absolute, and scientists are bound by it.
What gets me is that the pro-nukers insist that, even if Davis-Besse had melted down, it STILL wouldn't be a problem, because the containment dome would hold back everything from the environment forever -- the nuclear industry's faith in containment domes is unwarranted and illogical -- and utterly UNTESTED.
The many infiltrators in the "anti-nuclear" movement, as well as the provocateurs and posers -- and even a few sadly misinformed activists -- might all say they are not opposed to nuclear power, they just want it run safely. But that viewpoint is out of touch with reality, because the plants are NOT run safely, and CANNOT be run safely because, even if they were properly maintained and their complex internal workings fully understood by their operators, terrorism, accidental airplane strikes, asteroids, earthquakes, tsunamis, and many other things could, nevertheless, destroy the plants.
The pro-nukers say San Onofre is tsunami-proof because it has a seawall of sorts,which may or may not be able to withstand a tsunami of such-and-such a height. But the types of tsunamis that are caused by underwater earthslides can be hundreds or even thousands of feet tall -- and the local utility WON'T EVEN COMMISSION A NEW STUDY using the new software tools that are available for mapping the ocean's floor. Why won't they? Because they know what they will probably find -- that a large tsunami IS possible here.
Besides that, asteroids can land anywhere, creating tsunamis miles high, and the NRC has no idea, within several orders of magnitude, how likely or unlikely that is. Such tsunamis could even occur on, say, Lake Erie. We know it would be catastrophic, and we know that if we choose alternative energy systems, the total danger to society, taking into account the many generations of humans who would be harmed by a nuclear accident, is many orders of magnitude less for ANY alternative energy source. We should have been more thoughtful half a century ago, but it's never too late to stop trying to commit global suicide, is it?
The nuclear industry and the NRC both tell us that San Onofre is earthquake-proof, but they have decided, without proof (and with plenty of hard evidence to the contrary), that the largest earthquake we might have here is a 7.0. They have also decided that the plant can definitely withstand that magnitude earthquake, even though many buildings have been destroyed in earthquakes which they were supposed to have been able to survive. I'm talking about buildings built decades AFTER San Onofre -- when engineers knew much MORE about how to protect against such events! But, again, no new studies are being done.
Don't let these people fool you. There is no way that nuclear energy can be made a safe alternative to renewable energy solutions, which could easily supply the 7% of America's energy needs that nuclear supplies. And if that's true (and it is!), there's simply no logical reason to be FOR NUCLEAR POWER, even if the industry operated as safely as it possibly could, and even if no natural disasters larger than could possibly be planned for (and still make money for the plants' owners) could ever actually happen. Even in those ideal, fantasy-conditions, renewables would STILL make more sense than nuclear because of the INTRACTABLE problem of nuclear waste.
In other words, the nuclear industry in America IS doomed. It will die eventually. It is uneconomical for society as a whole, which is probably the main reason why no new plants have been ordered in America in decades. But more than that, it is unsustainable in the long run, because there WILL be an accident sooner or later, unless the plants are closed (and maybe even then).
After a disaster (or two) affecting millions, the plants WILL finally be closed. But, apparently, the current generation of nukes will not be shut down without an accident. THAT'S ALL THAT DAVIS-BESSE HAS PROVEN.
Nothing about corrosion, embrittlement, metal fatigue, rust piles, corporate lying, NRC inaction, or anything else was PROVEN by this incident which hadn't been PROVEN by 1000 other incidents EACH YEAR, except one thing: That, unfortunately, ONLY a nuclear disaster will STOP nuclear power in AMERICA.
Excepting, of course, unexpected miracles. Davis-Besse COULD HAVE BEEN that miraculous warning to America, but frankly, it's been almost completely ignored. That doesn't leave much except a real disaster left to happen.
THEN, I suppose, you and the UCS will finally say you are against nuclear power.
And so will everyone else (who's left).
Big deal. That's too late. You should be UP IN ARMS NOW, because these plants -- the ones you worked on when you were on the "inside" -- are still open. Because the nuclear waste problem is being ignored as if it were a NIMBYISM problem. Because 9-11's implications are being IGNORED by the NRC -- worse than ignored -- we are not permitted to talk about terrorism at hearings.
You should be ranting and raving, yelling the truth, without compromise, because science has been abominated by the Nuclear Mafia. As a former nuclear plant engineer, you've been in the "meat grinder". So you know about how the nuclear industry averages radiation readings over months of time, thus removing short-lived but intense (and intensely dangerous) radiation releases from the official record. You know about how they only hire the healthiest workers in America, and then gleefully claim their cancer rates are no worse than average, when in fact, long-time nuclear workers are dropping like flies. You know about how any statement can be made by any nuclear worker, and the NRC will not investigate its veracity -- so reporters are routinely lied to, and activists haven't got a prayer if they simply want the truth about nuclear power! You do know all this, don't you? And how can you possibly NOT know the military history of nuclear power -- that is, not know that the civilian nuclear power industry is little more than a full-employment program for retirees of the nuclear navy? How could you not know about the military's need for substances like tritium and plutonium; these "needs" are why they forced nuclear power down our throats in the first place?
Do you not understand the proper application of statistical failure rates to future events? In other words, how many close calls does it take to show a trend? Are you convinced (and if so, why?) that there is a technological solution to even the most complex and intractable problem on earth -- that of safely storing and enclosing NUCLEAR EXPLOSIONS?
Tiny little nuclear explosions, but no easier to stop than an atomic bomb once it's started its critical chain reaction (in other words, unstoppable). The shooting particles collide with, and break down, any container you put them in.
And just like its BIG BROTHER the Nuclear Bomb (a WMD Bush thinks is OKAY for us to own AND USE, but not okay for North Korea or Iraq), a little MATTER is converted into RAW ENERGY.
Heat, cold, chemical bonding -- nothing seems to have much, if any, effect on the half-life of radioactive substances, and yet we claim we can contain this stuff -- even if millions of shipments of it have to be made all over the country -- millions! In today's terrorist threat environment!
Yet still, you, and the UCS, do not oppose nuclear power. Why not? Have you failed then, to investigate cleaner energy sources? Do you really believe nuclear power is our last resort, and we are down to our last resorts? Despite what wind power has proven capable of in the past decade alone, let alone in the 1000+ years since wind power was first harnessed. Despite water's vast untapped energy potential. Despite solar collector technology's many recent improvements. And even despite "clean coal" technology! We need energy; but there are many ways to get it. Nuclear is only the worst of many, each with varying degrees of badness about them. But to not be against nuclear power is to say it's BETTER than ALL of the other possible choices! That NONE of them, and no MIX of them, could replace nuclear!
That's preposterous. The evidence is completely, overwhelmingly, against it. There's no reason not to be against nuclear power, unless you make money from it. Not that there isn't a lot left that nuclear science doesn't yet understand. It's just that society has enough information available to know we have made a very poor energy choice.
Not one scientist can tell which of any two given radioactive atoms of the same substance (Pu 238, Pu 239, etc.) will radioactively decay first.
Not one scientist can tell what direction any particles expelled by the breakdown will go in.
Not one scientist can separate those atoms of a given substance which will break down earlier from those which will break down later, even in a general sense, let alone, dividing the piles according to when they will break down, so you have a pile of Pu 238 which will break down in about 50 years, and another pile which will break down in about 100 years, and so forth. Can't be done -- or at least, no one knows how to do it. Knowing how to do this could make a huge difference! But we aren't even close.
Not one scientist can tell me exactly how an alpha particle or beta particle, gamma ray or x-ray damages living cells. Some will even claim they DON'T damage living cells in low enough doses and are, in fact, good for you (poppycock known as "Hormesis")!
Not one scientist can tell me out of what materials, and how, to build a container which will contain nuclear materials, without itself being broken down over time by those same nuclear materials, becoming, in the process, irradiated itself.
Not one scientist can tell me how to prevent human beings from making mistakes while moving large loads, even though the physics of how such things should be done is supposedly well known, the weights easy enough to calculate to a fine enough degree, the over-protections standardized, etc.. Is there ANY reason ANY 80,000 lb. load should be DROPPED at ANY nuclear power plant ANYMORE? Is it THAT HARD? But San Onofre's operators dropped such a load a couple of years ago, and decades before that, they dropped the reactor pressure vessel head, and next they'll be moving thousands of tons of SPENT FUEL into Dry Casks for "temporary" storage on site. And moving the oldest reactor away, if they haven't done that already as I write this! Can they be trusted to move such loads safely? Or does decades of failure suggest otherwise? Not one scientist can tell me if San Onofre's operators are now PERFECT at what they do, but history strongly suggests they are NOT, and a CATASTROPHIC accident is not just likely -- it's practically INEVITABLE! There are MILLIONS of pounds of spent fuel in our reactors' pools. It should be moved, but at most ONCE. It should absolutely NOT be moved an extra time just to make more room to run the reactor for longer. NOT ONE SCIENTIST can prove there is no risk, and history can teach us the rest -- IF we listen. (Perhaps we don't need scientists anymore, just historians.)
Not one scientist can tell me what the effect would be of taking an amount of plutonium, which is agreed by all to be a fatal amount if placed in one human's lung (a very tiny amount by anyone's standards!), and dividing this small amount into one million pieces, and placing each of those pieces in a million human's lungs, instead of all into one human's lungs.
Not one scientist can tell me how many stillbirths were ignored after Hiroshima and Nagasaki (and Chernobyl), hidden from the official records. Deaths which skew the data about how dangerous low doses of radiation really are.
Not one scientist can say for sure if NASA has already killed MILLIONS because of all the plutonium they have ALREADY released into the environment in huge quantities, often incinerated at high altitude, causing it to "go to particulate" at the perfect size for permanently lodging in human lungs (about 10 microns). Not one scientist can say which NASA mission will fail next, nor how much plutonium might be on board when it fails.
NASA is sending more and more plutonium into outer space, much of it in conjunction with the U.S. military. Much of that plutonium (mostly Pu 238, the most virulent form) remains in orbit around the earth, although a few missions are dubbed "civilian space exploration" and widely promoted in the media. Their real purpose is to allow for military space missions to use the same plutonium facilities. This is insane, is it not? After all, the civilian space missions (such as Cassini) could have been non-nuclear -- but the military ones are much harder to make non-nuclear.
So again, the military pro-nuclear needs causes a civilian industry which produces tons and tons of nuclear waste, and what does nuclear waste produce? Cancer, leukemia, birth defects, and death.
Yet STILL you and the Union of Supposedly Concerned Scientists remain unconcerned, and remain in support of nuclear power. Why? What part of the military connection is resolved in these scientist's minds, that permits such a SILLY REASON to guide such an IMPORTANT PUBLIC POLICY?
For it is a truly silly reason, you see. There is no military objective which nuclear weapons can achieve, which other weapons could not also achieve equally quickly and cost-effectively, but with little or no long-term ecological damage (long-term damage = a long-term hatred of whoever did the damaging). American warriors are despised for the ecological damage they cause. In "modern" warfare (that is, for the last two or three thousand years), there is ALWAYS a striving (or at least a purported striving) to fight honorably. (This is probably because war is so utterly distasteful in the first place, and quite probably against God's wishes, assuming, of course, that there is a God.) Creating an ecological disaster is NOT honorable, and denying you are doing it is even LESS honorable! There is no military nuclear ship or sub which is impervious to all possible forms of attack. If a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier is destroyed in a harbor, it would be an ecological disaster. If they manage to tow it out to the deep blue sea, it's STILL an ecological disaster! And the areas we lay waste to with our Depleted Uranium bullets -- the byproduct of our nuclear industry, turned into weapons -- are now ecological disasters. The areas where we test nuclear weapons large and small are ALSO ecological disasters. Without the plants, there would be no D.U. No tritium. No plutonium. At least, no MORE, anyway.
How many barrels of nuclear waste, low, high, medium, whatever -- lie at the bottom of our oceans, thrown there by the shipload-full while the nuclear industry turned out the many tools of its trade -- the nuclear fuel, which leaves tailings every step along the way as it's made, the bombs, which also leave tailings, the medical equipment -- a tiny fraction of the total, actually, but which also leaves tailings, the "depleted" uranium weapons, which are little more than tailings themselves to begin with, and leave yet more radioactive waste in their wake (and in the wakes of those who die from working with the weapons).
Please tell the world WHY you, and the Union of Concerned Scientists, are not calling for an immediate shut-down of all nuclear power plants (including military!) and an immediate switch to ecologically-sound energy sources, in light of all these "issues" which detract from nuclear power's one lone plus -- which is that, if you assume that others will do the dying for you, it can provide electrons in wires to power DVD players. Is that advantage great enough to warrant the support of the Union of Concerned Scientists?
Note to local residents: The North County (San Diego) Times is reporting today (1/27/2003) that the NRC is lowering earthquake standards for Dry Storage Casks. This will lower the cost of storing the deadly fuel and increase the danger to the public. The only way to prevent Dry Storage Cask use in California is to force the plants to shut down immediately, before they make any more waste and before they run out of room in their Spent Fuel Pools. The NC Times' article also claimed that Yucca Mountain would eventually open, but clearly, the reporter (Phil Diehl) has either not been to Nevada, or has not spoken to the residents there, nor heard them speaking at public hearings. Nevadans, from the Governor on down, vehemently oppose Yucca Mountain and have vowed never to let it open (most of them say Dry Storage Casks on site are good enough, thus avoiding being called "anti-nuclear"). In any event, as long as the nuclear industry can claim Yucca Mountain (or a possible temporary site on the Goshute Indian Reservation in Utah) will eventually open, then Dry Cask Storage is only "temporary" storage! IT IS ACTUALLY GOING TO BE A "PERMANENT" SOLUTION -- THAT IS, "PERMANENT" UNTIL AN ACCIDENT OCCURS. 120 Casks are planned for San Onofre, EACH with enough radioactive waste inside to wipe out all of Southern California (and then some) if it catches fire. EACH without any electronic monitoring system built inside ("seal and forget"). EACH a target for terrorists with airplanes OR 50-Caliber machine guns OR truck/car bombs OR suicidal hang-gliders with C-4 explosives. EACH totally useless to society but dangerous for MILLIONS OF YEARS. EACH has made a handsome FORTUNE for SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA EDISON'S INVESTORS.
ALL THIS FOR NOTHING -- ALL RENEWABLE ENERGY NEEDS IN ORDER TO SUCCEED IS AN HONEST PUSH FROM AN HONEST GOVERNMENT (SUPPORTED BY AN HONEST MEDIA) -- NOT SCORN AND FINANCIAL RUIN FROM PRO-NUKERS WITH HIDDEN AGENDAS.
At 06:21 AM 1/27/2003 , "Dave Lochbaum" <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
Hello Mr. Hoffman:
Thank you for your perspective. If I understand your point, you invited
me to get an education or get out. I'll opt, as I've done since before
joining UCS, for the continuing education rather than getting out. Part
of that continuing education is to factor in your viewpoint, as well as
the viewpoint from pro-nuclear types who attacked me for saying that
Davis-Besse would have melted down had the stainless steel failed.
At 03:22 PM 1/25/2003 , "Jack Shannon" <Jacksha1@aol.com> wrote:
I have been telling everyone who would listen that Lochbaum is a [. . . ].
He doesn't know crap about the Nuclear Business, but he is always called upon
to be a spokesman for the anti-nuke groups.
Furthermore I've always thought he was pro nuke.
Note: Both Lochbaum and Shannon are former nuclear industry insiders and nuclear engineers. Jack Shannon is also a nuclear physicist, USMC (ret.), and designed the U.S. Navy's DxG nuclear reactors (the most widely used reactors on the planet). -- rdh
At 05:02 AM 1/27/2003 , "WISE Amsterdam" <email@example.com> wrote:
SUBJECT: Re: Davis-Besse happened in Switzerland in 1971 - but who cares?
Re your criticism of Dave Lochbaum: I didn't see the interview - I
always thought that Dave Lochbaum is basically anti-nuclear but
the Union of Concerned Scientists has a policy of rejecting the
label "anti-nuclear" which the industry likes to stick like a Band-Aid
over the mouths of anyone speaking out against it. This puts Dave
in a difficult position - see, for example, the remarkable disclaimer
which he put in his book "Fission Stories".
However, there still remains the "Swiss connection" puzzle. I
enclose the latest Nuclear Monitor (note: the Amsterdam edition,
not the North American edition). The point of this story is that for
around thirty years, the NRC had details on file of a hole in a
reactor in Switzerland (Beznau) that was extremely similar to the
Davis-Besse "extreme near-miss" though not quite as severe.
What is more, WISE Amsterdam faxed the plant manager at
Beznau last year, within days of the Davis-Besse hole becoming
public knowledge, since Beznau has a history of cracking. At the
time we didn't know that it was more than just cracking at Beznau.
What is weird is that I find it hard to generate any interest in the
story - only one journalist has contacted us, and he's Swiss. Any
idea what I'm doing wrong?
Regards, Stuart Field (editor, "Nuclear Monitor")
World Information Service on Energy - WISE Amsterdam
PO Box 59636
(Visitors: Ketelhuisplein 43)
1040 LC Amsterdam
The following section of this message contains a file attachment
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Note: The NM PDF, which is not included in THIS email, has been posted online here:
At 11:16 AM 1/26/2003 , "Gai Oglesbee" <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
Thanks for publishing this educational material and comments for others to review and consider. I wish you were an attorney, too. The atomic worker victims need good attorneys to address violations of many American laws who aren't afraid of the government or repercussions. The Prez's fixation on the WAR for his various reasons, has put us all in the same situation facing losses of jobs and lack of funding for commitments and the economy that is failing.
Gai is one of millions who have been hurt by America's nutty pro-nuclear policies. I wish I was a lawyer too! -- rdh
At 10:05 PM 1/27/2003 , "Bob Nichols" <email@example.com> wrote:
Dear Mr. Hoffman,
My hat's off to you, Mr. Hoffman. Your email to Lochbaum addresses the nuclear delusion directly on every aspect one can think of. Your exceptionally lucid and to the point essay should be required reading in all engineering and law schools in this country.
The nuke plant operators have not built any new power reactors in the US since Citizens' Action for Safe Energy (CASE) in Oklahoma killed the planned Black Fox Nuclear Power Plant, now known as Black Hawk Down. This was done by mere citizens and a lawsuit.
What they are doing instead is running the nuke plants hotter and faster. They originally thought max production was 20 gigawatt days (a lot of money) from a ton of lethal, long-lived, radioactive uranium and plutonium reactor cores.
After pushing the plants to produce 43 gigawatt days (huge amount of money) of electricity they still want to run them ever hotter and faster.
It would be ludicrous if it was not so tragic. What the nuke power plant PR people try to make people think is that the plants operate on water and steam. Nothing could be further from the truth for most of them. These PR types are more dangerous to us than Osama bin Laden. They are mendacious, they prevaricate, simply put: they lie on purpose.
460 Degree, 2,200 psi, scalding, corrosive boric acid runs through the metal veins of these behemoths at 5,000 gallons a minute! No wonder the acid ate the top lid at Davis-Besse nearly through. Only 1/4 inch remained. Does anyone reading this really think that was not to be expected? What do you think is happening on the other nuke power plant reactor lids? To make matters worse the reactor lids were not designed to be replaced, ever.
What this tells us is that these nuke power plant people are clearly insane and should not be allowed to reproduce, to use a favorite expression of the old Oklahoma Klu Kluxers.
Realistically, we really should put them all away in nice state facilities with large room mates named "Bubba." Then they could wonder about the state of their personal immune systems till the day they die. I truly think these traitors fully deserve this. They are selling us all out. They are detestable.
Member, CASE - Citizens Action for Safe Energy
Oklahoma City, Ok
To: "Russell D. Hoffman" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Re: Followup comments by and about David Lochbaum Re: Moyers
(PBS) on Davis-Besse nuke
At 20:12 1/27/2003 -0800, you wrote:
January 27th, 2003
Dear Mr Lochbaum.....
I *think* David Lochbaum considers himself an opponent of the nuclear industry.
The Union of Concerned Scientists is in very poor standing with me because when we were (successfully) fighting a waste incinerator in Delaware, a UCS representative wrote letters to Delaware legislators supporting the burner. Why? They considered it a "biomass power plant" or some such thing, and consider that burning waste wood makes less of a net contribution to global warming than burning coal. Never mind that the waste contains lead and arsenic and the plant would threaten the health of nearby communities.....
To: "Russell D. Hoffman" <email@example.com>
Cc: "Mitzi Bowman" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Re: Moyers (PBS) page on Davis-Besse nuke; RDH comments,+ humor + Jack Shannon
Dear Russell, Dave Lochbaum once told me (at the August '98 anti-nuclear action camp in Vt., I think it was) that he was not allowed to publicly express his real feelings about nuclear power (that it should be shut down) when representing USC in public because they do not take an anti-nuclear position (NEVER DID), and only concentrate on safety issues. That's the trouble, I feel, with being employed by corporate and foundation-funded "enviromental" organizations.
There were several weaknesses in the Moyer's broadcast, including the misinformation by the speaker at the hearing who claimed that California shut-downs caused electric service shortages. (NOT True. It was manipulation by the utilities after deregulation in order to raise the rates) but from the reaction of one viewer, who was shocked by what she saw, I think there might be some benefit for a whole generation of novices who have little knowledge of the technology if it raises consciousness even a little and affords an opportunity for discussion.
Anyway, I need to ask you a question:
Do you remember and have knowledge of the "coincidental" death of Rep. Leo Ryan (D), shot in Guyana at the airport when coming to investigate the Jim Jones disaster? When he left the U.S. he was engaged in investigating some nuclear plant mystery. I can't remember the details, and a friend is trying to do research on the possible connection between that investigation and his untimely assassination. Mitzi P.S. I don't point the finger at nuclear workers, rather at their bosses and the NRC (Nobody Really Cares) top brass whose mandate (despite the stated mandate - safety) is to keep the industry alive and do their bidding. M.
At 01:58 AM 1/28/2003 , "WISE Amsterdam" <email@example.com> wrote:
Thanks for including my e-mail in your last circular. One thing
though - since people subscribe to our Nuclear Monitor, we're not
too happy if the newsletter is put up on the Web in its entirety. I
don't know if it is possible to just put the article up (pages 1 and 2
only) - you're the software expert, you tell me! - but this would be
Also, I see our software has not worked properly - the diagram of
the holes at Davis-Besse and Beznau has not "distilled" properly
from Pagemaker into PDF format - a line on the right-hand side is
World Information Service on Energy - WISE Amsterdam
PO Box 59636
(Visitors: Ketelhuisplein 43)
1040 LC Amsterdam