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Post by Rogue on Fri Jan 23, 2015 6:16 am

'Doomsday Clock' jumps ahead by 2 minutes

7:43 AM Friday Jan 23, 2015

The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists says Earth is now closer to human-caused doomsday than it has been in more than 30 years because of global warming and nuclear weaponry. But other experts say that's much too gloomy.

2 minutes closer to Doomsday 456613403_620x310

The US advocacy group founded by the creators of the atomic bomb moved their famed "Doomsday Clock" ahead two minutes today. It said the world is now three minutes from a catastrophic midnight, instead of five minutes.

"This is about doomsday; this is about the end of civilisation as we know it," bulletin executive director Kennette Benedict said at a news conference in Washington.

She called both climate change and modernization of nuclear weaponry equal but undeniable threats to humanity's continued existence that triggered the 20 scientists on the board to decide to move the clock closer to midnight.

"The probability of global catastrophe is very high, and the actions needed to reduce the risks of disaster must be taken very soon," Benedict said.


But other scientists aren't quite so pessimistic.

Michael Oppenheimer, a professor of both geosciences and international affairs at Princeton University, said in an email: "I suspect that humans will 'muddle through' the climate situation much as we have muddled through the nuclear weapons situation - limiting the risk with cooperative international action and parallel domestic policies."

The bulletin has included climate change in its doomsday clock since 2007.

"The fact that the Doomsday clock-setters changed their definition of 'doomsday' shows how profoundly the world has changed - they have to find a new source of doom because global thermonuclear war is now so unlikely," Harvard psychologist Steven Pinker wrote in an email.

Pinker in his book "The Better Angels of our Nature" uses statistics to argue that the world has become less war-like, less violent and more tolerant in recent decades and centuries.

Richard Somerville, a member of the Bulletin's board who is a climate scientist at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, said the trend in heat-trapping emissions from the burning of fossil fuels will "lead to major climatic disruption globally.

The urgency has nothing to do with politics or ideology. It arises from the laws of physics and biology and chemistry. These laws are non-negotiable."

But Somerville agreed that the threat from climate change isn't quite as all-or-nothing as it is with nuclear war.

Even with the end of the cold war, the lack of progress in the dismantling of nuclear weapons and countries like the United States and Russia spending hundreds of billions of dollars on modernizing nuclear weaponry makes an atomic bomb explosion - either accidental or on purpose - a continuing and more urgent threat, Benedict said.

But Benedict did acknowledge the group has been warning of imminent nuclear disaster with its clock since 1947 and it hasn't happened yet.

For more see: Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists:

-AP
http://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/news/article.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=11390628
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Post by Rockhopper on Fri Jan 23, 2015 7:54 am

We're doomed, doomed I say Roggie!

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Post by Lenzabi on Fri Jan 23, 2015 10:49 am

Doomsday Party time, like it is 1999

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Post by Rogue on Fri Jan 23, 2015 11:32 am


Don't spose theres really any point eating healthy, exercising or saving up for the future...
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Post by Agartha on Fri Jan 23, 2015 12:30 pm

I agree with the decision to move it closer.... many people don't realize what we are doing to the planet, droughts in some places, floods in others, plants dying, forests disappearing, all type of pollution everywhere.. what do they think it's going to happen in the future? They should watch the movie Interstellar, cause that is the future if we don't do something now.

This caught my attention on the OP article:

Harvard Psycchologist Steven Pinker. wrote:Pinker in his book "The Better Angels of our Nature" uses statistics to argue that the world has become less war-like, less violent and more tolerant in recent decades and centuries.

^^ really? are we really less war like? less violent?
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Post by Rockhopper on Fri Jan 23, 2015 9:37 pm

Of course not Ags. We just have the technology to kill more with one bang!

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Post by Lenzabi on Sat Jan 24, 2015 8:18 am

I wonder if the author had bothered looking at America's enduring wars in Iraq and Afghanistan? our looking to attack other "enemies" on the world stage. There are other wars in the world some in the news others less reported, Syria for example, the Israeli-Gaza issue? Boku Haram attacks in Nigeria? the tensions in the Pacific between China flexing it's muscle at neighbors and North Korea posturing? Look at the Crimea.

Less violent? not all protests are peaceful marches, many erupt into violence, either from protestors frustration, or instigators laced in to the crowds by the TPTB.

More tolerant and accepting? while many intelligent and open minded people may be so, there is still the rise of resurgent Nazis in Germany, here in America we have several varieties of intolerant, hateful, sometimes violently so people, parts of the world stupid still exists, I fear this author does not really look at the news situations or read o the things that show the world.

While Consciousness may have had a shift 2012, things are slowly trickling, no major flood of changes, other than the manipulators fanning the flames of fears.

I agree with the shift of the clock.


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Post by Agartha on Sat Jan 24, 2015 10:37 am

Rogue, if it's derailing your thread I will make a new one.....

This is how Dr. Pinker sees us being less violent:

The Better Angels of Our Nature takes a thesis I would love to believe; indeed, have casually believed for most of my life. It is that humans have grown less horrible with time. The 20th century, the century of Hitler, Stalin and Pol Pot, of Mao in China and Mobutu in the Congo, was appalling, but the number of deaths by violence as a proportion of the total population remained modest compared with the ferocious cruelties of the wars of religion in the 17th century.

The modern nation state – the Leviathan of the philosopher Hobbes – has had a civilising effect almost everywhere. Education has helped, as has the empowerment of women, and the idea, too, of human rights.

The modern nation state – the Leviathan of the philosopher Hobbes – has had a civilising effect almost everywhere. Education has helped, as has the empowerment of women, and the idea, too, of human rights.

Capital and corporal punishment have been eliminated in much of the world, and slavery has been abolished: people have lost their thirst for cruelty. Pinker gives the credit for this progress – "and if it isn't progress, I don't know what is" – to explicit political arguments and changes in sensibilities that began during the 18th century, the Age of Reason and the Enlightenment.

http://www.theguardian.com/science/2012/nov/19/better-angels-nature-steven-pinker-review

And if you think about it in many countries we have become more 'humanised', gay marriage is wildly accepted, interracial marriage, we fight for the rights of animals, etc.
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Post by Lenzabi on Sat Jan 24, 2015 12:58 pm

Dr Pinker has not much taken account of the likes of the Religious Rightists and Teaparty trying to reverse Gay Marriage as well as other issues. There are examples of Humanity that will show the violence is lurking under that veneer of civilization. So while many of us accept the more humane and civilized world, there are some who wish to enact their cruelty by trying to make it "law" Thankfully Progressives and many others are fighting back to push the archaic back to the past where it belongs, but the fight is far from over.

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Post by Stargate on Sat Jan 24, 2015 4:53 pm

@Rogue wrote:
Don't spose theres really any point eating healthy, exercising or saving up for the future...

Rogue, the future is the moment, I don't think we can change that.

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Post by Rogue on Sun Jan 25, 2015 12:06 am



Lol Star joking of course!!

A less violent world? That's a tough call. If you take the world by media and news reports then its hard to reconcile. But it is true a wide range of human rights have improved. But we are nowhere near where we should be as inhabitants of this little rock.
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Post by Lenzabi on Sun Jan 25, 2015 5:29 am

@Rogue wrote:

Lol Star joking of course!!

A less violent world? That's a tough call. If you take the world by media and news reports then its hard to reconcile. But it is true a wide range of human rights have improved. But we are nowhere near where we should  be  as inhabitants of this little rock.

Because such rights are recently attained and still fragile

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Post by Rogue on Sun Jan 25, 2015 9:18 am


Yes still just beginning, we still have a long way to go.
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Post by Stargate on Mon Jan 26, 2015 10:55 pm

@Rogue wrote:
Yes still just beginning, we still have a long way to go.

Rogue, Although I enjoy your optimism, the cows are dying wile the grass is growing. I hope you understand what I am saying.

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Post by Rogue on Tue Jan 27, 2015 8:54 am


My optimism? Please show me?
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Post by Stargate on Wed Jan 28, 2015 2:44 am

@Rogue wrote:
My optimism? Please show me?

I meant that you have strong hopes because we are at the beginning and it is nice to think we have some room for change. However I was stretching my comment somewhat.

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Post by Rogue on Thu Jan 29, 2015 10:53 am


Maybe a bit of a stretch... I think we have some heavy lifting to do yet. But yes, there is always hope.
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