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Opening Arguments

The Dunceday Clock

It is five minutes to midnight -- do you know where your planet is tonight?

The Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, which 60 years ago began keeping tabs on humanity's temporal distance from self-annihilation with the concept of a “Doomsday Clock,” apparently found things sufficiently dire to nudge the minute hand forward two clicks, indicating that we are now “five minutes to midnight” — or Doomsday.

The clock had last been adjusted in 2002, when it was moved from 9 minutes off to 7 minutes. The current position is the closest the group has put the planet to Doomsday since 1953, when the Soviets and the United States were first playing with their newfangled thermonuclear weaponry, and things looked mighty bleak indeed.

Even if this group didn't put global warming on a par with a nuclear North Korea, the Doomsday Clock would be a silly exercise, akin to Mr. Blackwell's 10 Worst-Dressed List.

Posted in: Current Affairs


brian stouder
Thu, 01/18/2007 - 7:01am

What caught my eye was when MSNBC (which I really like) made a big big big point about how, henceforth and forevermore they would refer to the war in Iraq as a Civil War - clarity in their News Reportage of 'The Truth' being so central to their no-nonsense/no propaganda approach, and all...

and then they tout the arbitrary (and oddly anachronistic) 'doomsday clock' on the front page of their website.