Thursday, April 28, 2016

The Nuclear Taboo - Rethinking Armageddon





Rethinking Armageddon


The First Nuclear Age was characterized by the Cold War era bipolar international system and a corresponding bipolar nuclear competition between the United States and the Soviet Union. While a few other states, such as Great Britain and France, also possessed nuclear arms, their arsenals were very small compared to those of the two superpowers.
The world is far different today. On the one hand, both the United States and Russia have far smaller nuclear arsenals than they did at the Cold War’s end. At the same time, new nuclear powers have emerged in pace with advanced conventional precision warfare capabilities. The rise of cyber warfare has also led to concerns over the security and reliability of early warning and command-and-control systems, and weapon systems as well. Advances in the cognitive sciences and research on Cold War crisis decision-making have challenged some of our thinking as to how strategies based on deterrence work, or risk failing. Together, these and other recent developments have combined to form what some are calling a Second Nuclear Age.


A Hothouse Summer is Coming and We’d Better Get Ready

We have never seen Winter heat like this before over Western North America. This creates a heightened risk of seriously severe Summer extreme weather events ranging well into the far north. Similar situation in Western Russia and North-Central Siberia.



Who Benefits in Yemen

Saudi Arabia decided to go to war in Yemen because it feared the Houthi takeover of the country would give Iran, its chief regional enemy, a foothold on its vulnerable southern underbelly. The Saudis also demonstrate they could project their military power in the region to aid in their quest for leadership of the Arab world. 



US firms knew about global warming in 1968 – what about Australia? 

By the late 1970s, The Canberra Times began running prominent stories about the possibility of sea-level rise and other climate impacts. A November 1977 article warned that relying only on coal-fired power would flood cities.


Financial Structure Overhaul Possible?

 


 



Why Real Reform Is Now Impossible 


The endless bleating of well-paid pundits in the corporate media about "reform" is just more circus.

It's difficult for well-meaning pundits to abandon the fantasy that meaningful reform is possible. Indeed, a critical function of the punditry and corporate media is to foster the fantasy that the status quo could be reformed if only we all got together and blah blah blah.
As I explain in my new book Why Our Status Quo Failed and Is Beyond Reformreal structural reform would trigger the collapse of the status quo. (As a reminder, the status quo benefits the few at the expense of the many.)
But there's another dynamic that makes reform impossible. I've prepared a chart to explain this dynamic:


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