long view in a nuclear age

I do not understand the world I live in. I try to and come up with theories, but overall even if I arrive at conclusions, they soon disappear. It is not so much that I need to reverse them, but instead have to concede two completely different and opposing things are both true.

Human beings are simply so amazing at being shortsighted and petty. I do not count myself out. At one point, I tried to do some personal accounting on things I should have done, could have done and would have done, but it just goes to show the road of good intentions.

Bill Cosby once did a bit about mad cow disease and an oddly self-reflective cow talked with another cow wondering if there was any way to prevent their impending slaughter. The second one suggested wiping away the foam at their mouths. I have always had the feeling the one who proposed the solution did not ever attempt it. I am not sure why I believe this. It could just be the somewhat jaded nature of my mind, but it seems to me the cow with the idea would have already done this.

On the surface, this imagined observation of nature may just seem like a silly bit of humor. I find it remarkably astute how people lead their lives. There are so many times where technically we have an answer for what we should do and know ways we could avoid a fall, yet choose to blunder on.

Congress may very well be pursuing such a course in its latest bout of trying to figure out what to do about Iran’s efforts to join the circle of those who possess nuclear power. The nation’s leaders pledge they seek it only to be able to meet the countries energy needs. Meanwhile the countries which possess it are collectively not entirely buying it, probably for good reasons.

There is a tension associated with nuclear power I have grown up with as a child born during the waning age of the cold war. When the years piled on more I became aware of the peculiar balance known as mutual destruction. It is sort of like playing Russian Roulette with two people where all the chambers are loaded and both participants are guaranteed to get off the shot to end it all. The only exceptions to  wanton and sickened destruction of the earth apparently being Twinkies and cockroaches. The fact hostess went out of business for a while may mean only the latter survives unless the designers of the video game Fallout prove prophetic in which case rad roaches will sustain your life although not happily no matter how you prepare them.

For those of you who do not play the game the designers of Fallout created a world in which fragments of society do survive an all-out nuclear war and try to scratch out an existence amidst the twisted and ravaged world. There are some who seek to do so with cooperation and others either want to kill you, possibly eat you or control you in a way that promises endless bad days. All the while telling you exactly the opposite. The player gets to tip the scales in one direction or the other, but of course there is the option of being fairly neutral or running the spectrum in between.

Congress more and more reminds me of the enclave, the folks who promise a bright shining world, but actually more interested in control than the well being of all.

The issue with Iran is efforts at diplomacy are on the table in which some sanctions would be lifted in exchange for them allowing inspectors to come in and verify the nation’s peaceful intentions. The work put it in to get talks to this point must have been phenomenal, but certain elements in congress want to jeopardize these efforts by proposing more penalties for not complying. In some ways this amounts to just about getting someone irate calmed down then kicking them in the shin.

I am not at ease with the notion of Iran possessing nuclear weapons or North Korea for that matter. I am not a fan of any nation having them, but it is one of those things once discovered won’t ever entirely go away. My greatest concern is that at some point someone with a big enough axe to grind will lose all sense of enlightened self-interest and unleash the true horrors of nuclear war. If this does happen aim for the head of feral zombies (these are enemies in the game Fallout I am not proposing violence… quite the opposite really) it might be cliché, but is effective. Also Three Dog is right there is no reasoning with raiders or anyone for that matter who is only bent on taking without regard or concern for the well being of others. I am hoping kindness and good sense wins out.