Another Doomsday, Another Dollar: Shifting Science Towards Peace and Ecology

Written by Charlotte Laws

In his book, Our Final Hour, Cambridge professor and Britain’s “Astronomer Royal” Martin Rees predicts humanity has no more than a 50/50 chance of survival intorepparttar next century and that by 2020 a million people will perish due to scientific error or terror. Some would call him prescient, while others would interpret his words as alarmist, resembling a layer cake with environmental fears on top of nuclear fears on top of chemical and biological threats, ad infinitum. With a sci-fi flare, he warns of runaway technology, human clones and an ability to insert memory chips intorepparttar 140967 brain.

Doomsday predictors get muchrepparttar 140968 same respect asrepparttar 140969 “toxic fumes” sign atrepparttar 140970 local service station; they impart their wisdom, yet we yawn. Situations which seem grim and overwhelming, even potentially lethal, tend to be ignored. Attention on more immediate and “American” concerns, such as consumer goods and personal advancement, monopolize our daily thoughts. This is arguably foolhardy and indicative ofrepparttar 140971 “another doomsday, another dollar” mentality.

Rees is not a lone voice onrepparttar 140972 scientific stage. The “Bulletin of Atomic Scientists” reports we have seven minutes until our final bow at midnight. Other reputable experts surmise that a “gray goo” or nanotechnological catastrophe posesrepparttar 140973 greatest threat. This involvesrepparttar 140974 invention of miniature, self-replicating machines that gnaw away atrepparttar 140975 environment until it is devoid of life. It need not be deliberate sabotage—as in technological warfare by one nation against another--but could result from a laboratory mishap.

Astronomers speak of fugitive asteroids that could destroy major sections of our planet withinrepparttar 140976 next 30 years. Others point to atom-crashing tests and their potential for a lethal strangelet scenario. Strangelets are malformed subatomic matter, which could distort all normal matter and dissolverepparttar 140977 earth in seconds.

There are streams of alerts from environmental experts who tell us natural disasters are onrepparttar 140978 rise. They warn of climatic change and tell usrepparttar 140979 world's species die at a rate 1000 times greater than they did prior to human existence due to habitat destruction andrepparttar 140980 introduction of non-indigenous species intorepparttar 140981 ecosystem. Their conclusion? If we do not reverserepparttar 140982 damaging trend, Earth itself will be extinct.

Should we open our minds to doomsday predictions? And if we accept them, what isrepparttar 140983 next step to insure or increase our chance of planetary survival?

In his book, Science, Money and Politics, Daniel Greenberg follows a trail of suspicion. He condemns what he believes to berepparttar 140984 self-serving, greedy scientific community with its bungled research, conflicts of interest and findings that never seerepparttar 140985 light of day due to suppression by corporate sponsors. But this seems to be an overly cynical, embellished perspective; there are surely many scientists dedicated to discovery and social responsibility, apart from any personal gain. And we should not forget that offering controversial insights can be at a cost; proponents of “radical” theories often expose themselves to public and professional ridicule.

Story of Rock Island Bend

Written by Mike Clifford/HeartlandOutdoorsman.Com

HeartlandOutdoorsman.Com FREE Spring Photo Contest! (Keep hotlink intact for reproduction) Peter Dombrovskis' most famous photograph, Rock Island Bend, wasrepparttar iconic image ofrepparttar 139200 campaign to stop Tasmania's Hydro-Electric Commission dammingrepparttar 139201 Franklin River. When it appeared as a full-page advertisement inrepparttar 139202 Herald just beforerepparttar 139203 1983 federal election,repparttar 139204 caption was "Would you vote for a party that would destroy this?" The Franklin River was saved with federal intervention.This was not just a political photo. It was also a good photo.

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