While I’ve been eating my lunch today, I’ve been thinking about various things in the news and how they reflect the fear, undertainty, distrust… and stupidity in our society today. Let me give you two examples:
- As we observe the situation in Japan, we’re treated to headlines such as “New shocks, reactor leak terrify Japanese” or “Crews struggling to contain radiation after explosions and fuel-rod exposure“. Radiation, it seems, sells papers, and boy does it help when people don’t understand the science. What’s important to note, however, is that the reactors aren’t melting down. In fact, arguably, this is demonstrating the safety of modern plants, for when faced with an earthquake orders of magnitude greater than anticipated, we haven’t had a major meltdown. In fact, Japan is not facing another Chernobyl… not even close. (This is not to say that Japan doesn’t have problems, and there are not risks for those near the plants…. it just isn’t as bad as the hype is purporting it to be)
- There’s also fear in politics: fear to let the people decide. We’re certainly seeing this in California, where our entire budget and future is being held hostage out of fear of upsetting a few
shock jocksobnoxious talk radio hosts on KFI. Whereas the Democrats want to cut the budget and get the state moving, the Republicans aren’t voting. Note that the fight here is not whether to raise taxes (or extend taxes, depending on your point of view). The fight is whether to put the issue to the voters. You heard me right. The people of California went on record that they want to vote on tax increases, and the Republican legislature is refusing to permit the issue to go on the ballot. I wonder what they are scared of?
And since we’re talking about knowledge, here are some “Did You Know?”s:
- Did you know that you might not be able to recycle cash register receipts?
- Did you know that gluten sensitivity appears to be distinct from celiac disease… and much more common?
- Did you know that you can save significant gas by turning off your car instead of idling?