Tick tock goes the Armageddon clock: the Doomsday Clock moves forward

ICYMI: Yesterday, the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists moved the Doomsday Clock ahead by thirty seconds, and now it’s two minutes to midnight. Granted, it was 2.5 minutes to midnight before they moved the clock, so while it wasn’t a huge jump forward, it also indicates that globally, there are all sorts of situations that continue to deteriorate. (The decision to move the clock to 2.5 minutes to midnight, which happened in 2017, was in itself an unprecedented move since the clock typically only moves in full minute increments. Basically, things…aren’t great, and they keep getting worse.) (This is not the kind of time traveling I wanted to do.)
This is only the second time that the clock has gotten this close to midnight — the first time was in 1953, after the U.S. and the (then) U.S.S.R both conducted nuclear bomb testing. Comforting, right?
This time, the possibility of nuclear war is again a huge factor in the clock’s jump forward. While there hasn’t been bomb testing lately — at least, not of the kind that are dropped from planes, there has been missile testing. And missiles are basically just self-flying bombs, so there’s that. And aside from the actual weapons themselves, there’s also the fact that “hyperbolic rhetoric and provocative actions…have increased the possibility of nuclear war by accident or miscalculation.”
People have not been playing well in the sandbox lately. Unfortunately, a lot of those people have nuclear weapons. So…yeah.
But the nuclear threat isn’t the only reason the clock is moving forward. The Bulletin also includes the long-term effects of climate change — while increasing temperatures and the accompanying wacky weather and weather-related disasters don’t seem to affect us now, they will in the future. (Though there have been more disasters lately.)
Rapid technological change and emerging technologies is another concern. No, the Bulletin isn’t threatened by technology itself, but in how that technology is used. (So, you know, trying to influence election outcomes and that sort of thing is super not cool.)
And then, of course, there’s the “breakdown in the international order” — there’s concern about the US stepping back from its role as a global leader…and there’s concern about all the finger-pointing and name-calling that’s been going on lately. (See: people in the sandbox.)
The TL;DR version of this is: the Doomsday Clock has jumped forward to 11:58 pm, the closest it’s been to midnight since 1953. We’re inching closer to the apocalypse, and contributing factors are: the global nuclear threat; the continued effects of climate change; technology and the not-cool-use of said technology; and the current WTF nature of international diplomacy.
 

References:

“2018 Doomsday Clock Statement.” The Bulletin of Atomic Scientists. January 25, 2018. Accessed January 26, 2018. https://thebulletin.org/2018-doomsday-clock-statement.
 

See also:

Doomsday Clock Statement Press Release: https://thebulletin.org/press-release/it-now-2-minutes-midnight11464
Behind the Design of the Doomsday Clock (The Atlantic): https://www.theatlantic.com/entertainment/archive/2015/11/doomsday-clock-michael-bierut-design/412936/
What is the Doomsday Clock and why does it matter? (Wired UK): http://www.wired.co.uk/article/what-is-the-doomsday-clock

The Year of the Women of Armageddon [REVIEW]

Thanks to Tavia and the guys at ICoS for having me give my two penny’s worth on the Women of Armageddon 2013 calendar. I have been known to cast an appreciative eye over the female form in my time, so 12 months’ worth of post-apocalyptic ladies sounds right up my street. Does the calendar cut the mustard?
women-of-armageddon-daniela-march
The Women of Armageddon calendar looks pretty damn good. The images are high quality and show a decent range of locations and props that show the individual personalities of some of the models. There’s a definite Sucker Punch meets Borderlands vibe to the aesthetic of the photos; a tongue in cheek, satirical look at traditional glamour calendars but still using the sexuality of the models to great effect (Daniela, Miss March, has a post-apocalyptic Scott Pilgrim vibe going on that is pretty funky).
What I like about these models is that they’ve got sex appeal, yes, but they also look like they could hold their own in a fight. These aren’t your typical “oh, I broke a nail!” divas. These are bad ass babes with guns!™ It’s a nice touch that some of the models are also heavy metal musicians too, so you know they know how to handle themselves.
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Pre-Apocalypse Fun: Impact Earth

While I think the apocalypse will arrive as a result of us blowing ourselves up or allowing a fancy new designer virus that turns everyone into zombies to fall into the wrong hands, I’ve always been partial to The End coming as a result of an asteroid impact. (Well, that and alien invasion. What can I say, I’m a science fiction geek.)
I think it puts the human race in a slightly better light, since we wouldn’t have offed ourselves as a result of someone’s inability to play well in the sandbox. However, I also don’t think anyone’s going to be able to drill a hole in the middle of this large flying object and put a nuke in it so that it blows itself up (yes, Armageddon, I’m looking at you).
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Post-Apocalyptic Reading: Pocket Guide To The Apocalypse by Jason Boyett

This is not a review. I just bought a book and am too excited to wait until after I’ve read it to spread the word.
I generally get excited about bout books; but gosh, I love facts and short bursts of information. Those fact a day calendars were made for me [1. except I always binge and cheat by looking ahead to learn more.]. And this new book, is right up my alley.
At times, I can have a handicapped attention span. The worst is when I know I only have a little bit of time, like on the train on my way to work. It’s difficult for me to get into a book knowing I can only read in sprints here and there or risk missing my stop because I’m engrossed [2. I know, woe the problems of the first world citizen].
Jason Boyett’s Pocket Guide To The Apocalypse: The Official Field Manual For The End Of The World is a perfect cure for not only my morbid fascination with the apocalypse, but also my love of sample-size facts and short-burst reading.
(Also, it fits in my purse. I love books that fit in my purse. [3. Has anyone realized I’m a huge nerd yet?])
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Post-Apocalyptic Reading – Impressions: Dear Diary by Michael Mathis

Dear Diary by Michael Mathis is short story about the creep up to “Armageddon[1. Which is actually used inaccurately…]” told from the perspective of a twelve-year-old girl living in New York City in the year 2023 writing in her brand new diary.
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