Subject: Looking for a debate? Look no further!

April 22nd, 2004

Dear Readers,

After Seabiscuit's abusive and arrogant earlier letters, this doesn't appear to be a case of cool-headed reflection of his past behavior and a serious switch to earnest debate, but rather, another case of stalking.

Also, a request came in for someone to talk about alternatives to NASA.  If you want to take part, you'll need to move quickly -- they need to line up their guests by April 23rd, 2004.  See the second item.


Russell Hoffman
Carlsbad, CA

Further correspondence with "Seabiscuit":

At 05:23 PM 4/17/2004 -0400, "Seawolf" <> wrote:
Re: Honesly? (sic)

After having read through your entire website, I have to ask you.  Do you honestly believe that Nuclear power is the worst alternative?  Is there another alternative that allows for the amount of power that nuclear power does in the same price range?  I haven't seen it yet.  Never mind that I work in Nuclear power.  Look at it from a cost analysis perspective.  Are you willing to pay double for your electricity just because it is coming from a wind powered generator?

At 12:18 AM 4/19/2004 -0400, "Seawolf" <> wrote:

To: "Seawolf" <>

April 22nd, 2004


You read the entire website in about week?  That's quite a feat.  Anyway, I had no idea you worked for the nuclear industry -- I thought you had retired from the Navy and were a lone-wolf disrupter of activists.  So, what company were you working for when you libeled me in your previous letters?  Had you shown your correspondence to me, to the company lawyers for your nuke plant?

In any event, yes, I honestly believe renewable energy solutions are much less expensive than anyone in the nuclear industry (or the DOE) is able to calculate.  So much less expensive, in fact, that a mixture of wind, wave, tide, solar, geothermal, hydroelectric (including "large scale hydro" which I don't believe is nearly as environmentally destructive as some environmentalists would have you believe), solar reflective space panels, Ocean Thermal Energy Conversion, and other renewable energy sources could all be used together to completely replace all three of the CON energy sources used in the production of electricity -- Coal, Oil, and Nuclear. 

Oil and Coal would still be extremely valuable commodities, because of the plastics and so forth that can be made from them.  To think that we simply burn these wonderful molecules!  What a waste!  We could be building low-weight wind turbines with the plastics, instead.

In assuming that wind power would double electricity costs, what did you use as a baseline for the number of wind turbines that would be installed over the next 10 years across the nation?  How many megawatts of electricity did your theoretical wind turbines each produce?  What percentage of electricity was produced by each of the renewable energy sources I listed above, including solar mirrors in space?

In making your comparisons, what did you use for the cost of nuclear waste disposal?  Or of nuclear accidents?  Or of cancers in the community from allowed releases?  Or do you think all nuclear waste harmlessly evaporates or something?  The planet is a closed system -- it cannot sustain a loss into the general environment of even just 1% of the nuclear waste which is now in storage without wiping us all out -- even 1 hundredth of 1% would be a catastrophe and would probably wipe us all out.  There would certainly be much suffering and gnashing of teeth.  The nuclear industry promises much lower percentages of nuclear waste will be released (>99.99999% containment, for instance), but such promises are pure "tripe" (to use one of your favorite words).  9-11 proved that spent nuclear fuel is very vulnerable to tactics known to be used by terrorists.  Nuclear waste is vulnerable both in spent fuel pools and -- worse -- in dry cask storage.  The reactors are also vulnerable.

What did you factor in for the potential cost of terrorism against wind turbines versus against nuclear installations?

What did you factor in for a typical usage of electricity?  Did you consider the idea that in the near future it might be 10 times what people now use -- and should be (if the electricity is produced using clean sources)?  The electricity for electric cars, VCRs, computers, or for creating hydrogen for Bush's hydrogen-based vehicles, has to come from somewhere, doesn't it?  If the nuclear industry were 10 times the size it is now -- with 1040 nuclear plants in America, and over 5,000 around the world, there would probably be a Chernobyl-sized accident every year or two.  Perhaps 100,000 people died because of Chernobyl.  The nuclear industry still assures us it was only about 30 people, all from direct exposure during the conflagration's worst days.  With such huge misconceptions, of course you think nuclear power is safe.  But your estimates are off by three, four, maybe five or more orders of magnitude!

Davis-Besse was nearly catastrophic.  There is no sane reason I can think of to assume the control rods would definitely have dropped successfully.  Nor can I think of any reason it would have mattered if they did drop or not; with a hole in the reactor pressure vessel's head, there almost surely would have been a meltdown and subsequent release of massive quantities of radiation into the environment.

All containment domes are full of holes, for people, equipment, and massive quantities of water to pass through.  And it's highly unlikely the cement or the steel they are built with are even of the quality specified in regulations.  A meltdown inside one of our containment domes will surely contaminate the land, rivers, and air for miles around.  In an accident, they carefully measure the radioactivity at the perimeter, but meanwhile, most of the poisonous stuff goes thousands of feet into the air right out the stack, and lands perhaps hundreds of miles away, or, if the predominant release mechanism is through water, they'll carefully take air measurements, and vice-versa.  (They used these sorts of incredibly inaccurate measuring methods at TMI, for instance.)

To properly calculate the cost of nuclear power, you have to know things like: What amount of plutonium (for example, Pu 239) causes lung cancer in a baby's first breath?  (According to the Yucca Mountain Draft Environmental Impact Statement (page H-18), an average PWR fuel assembly contains about 180 Curies of Pu 239, for instance, a BWR assembly, about 63 Curies of Pu 239.  They also contain various quantities of Pu 238, 240, 241, and 242.)  Some scientists estimate the chances of getting lung cancer from Pu 239 inhalation are 1000 greater than other scientists estimate it is (according to "Toxics A to Z", for example (a full reference to this book is available at my web site)).  The nuclear industry, OF COURSE, assumes the safer limit is the correct limit.  But I have never seen anyone present a compelling argument to back up that assertion.  I do, however, find the scientific arguments presented by Dr. John W. Gofman, (note: I'm not talking about author John G. Gofman, as you seem to think) and Dr. Chris Busby and his team, and others, to be compelling and, in every way, these gentlemen appear, to me, to understand the scientific method better than anyone who has tried to present to me the "rational" pro-nuclear arguments that the higher dose rate is safe.  (Your own arguments so far aren't even in the ballpark.)

When calculating the cost of nuclear power, you have to include the potential costs of health effects from large releases of radiation.  And you have to include the hundreds of billions, or even trillions, of dollars the government has already invested in nuclear power.  And you have to include the cost of everything in the nuclear fuel cycle.

When calculating the cost of renewable energy, it would be fair to include trillions for investment, as well -- but instead, government investment in renewables languishes at about .1% of what it could and should be.  If you factor in massive government subsidies to help get the industries started, prices will drop for everyone.

You say you haven't seen any alternatives to nuclear.  It is very clear to me that you haven't really been looking, if you think that wind-powered electricity is necessarily going to be double the cost of nuclear-based electricity.  But anyway, use of renewable energy requires using a mixture of energy solutions, not just wind, but many other methods.  The cost savings for America would be phenomenal.  But really, that's the LAST reason to switch!  Safety is the first.  Reliability is another good reason to switch away from nuclear.  The need to use energy solutions which can fit within the democratic model of society is another reason.  All that absurd secrecy over nuclear is usually used to hide spills, leaks, overflows, and other releases, and unsafe procedures.


Russell Hoffman
Carlsbad, CA

Looking for a debate?  Look no further!

From: "gary" <>
Subject: TV Talk Show -- Billions for Star Wars & Mars, Nothing for Earth? 
Date: Tue, 13 Apr 2004 17:31:35 -0700
I was hoping you might be able to help me out here. I'm looking for a guest from around California who might want to be on a panel discussion for a new cable tv show.
I'm a producer for a TV talk show called "The Debate Show" and we are looking for a passionate, articulate guest in the Los Angeles area who thinks we should be spending the money Bush is trying to get for space and space militarization here at home. The show is to be shot May 4.  We feature real people discussing real issues -- we don't book politicians or lobbyists, and you don't have to be a member of any group. You just have to passionately believe in your views.
We're looking for a person who believes our spending priorities are screwed up. At a time of rising homelessness and hunger, environmental decline, and economic hardship, should we be spending billions of dollars on sending people to the Moon and Mars and militarizing space?
This is a good opportunity to get your point of view out. If you know of anyone in the area who feels we should spend more money on Earth and less on Mars, please email me back at
Also, feel free to forward this email to any progressive listservs or to your friends.
Thanks for your help

A response to an article from (seen in RADBULL):

Re: No nuclear lion, just the Demon Hot Atom

To: "Dean M. Brooks" <>


Re your article in American Daily, you might want to visit -- between watching your Laker games, of course -- some of my web sites listed below so next time, you'll have some inkling of why people are opposed to nuclear power.  The problem nuclear power is having is that it's a stupid way to get electrons in wires.  It will never overcome that fact.  It's dangerous, dirty, unreliable, and inefficient, and its existence is entirely due to a lack of democracy in our energy decisions.


Russell Hoffman
Carlsbad, CA

Web site I've created related to nuclear issues:

The Demon Hot Atom Glossary of Nuclear Terminology:

List of U.S. Nuclear Power Plants:

Stop San Onofre:

The Effects of Nuclear Weapons (essay):

Stop Cassini:

No Nukes in Space:

350+ books and videos about nukes in my collection: