Vintage Fake News: The Ridiculous Doomsday Clock

Doomsday clock showing 3 minutes to midnight

I’m sure you have noticed that the scary Doomsday Clock, which tells us how long we have until “midnight,” aka. nuclear Armageddon, has been on the move again.

NBC News recently announced that the dreaded Clock was ticking like the soundtrack of “24 Hours, proclaiming: “Thirty seconds closer to global annihilation!”   The New York Times, which now averages at least eight “President Trump is a menace to civilization!!! ARGGH!!!” columns, editorials or news stories every…single…day, duly announced, “Thanks to Trump, the Doomsday Clock Advances Toward Midnight.” Across the pond, the UK’s Independent stated as fact, “We’re closer to doom than any time since the Cold War!”

Why? Because the Doomsday Clock says so!

Can we officially make that “The Ridiculous Doomsday Clock?” This has to be the most useless and malfunctioning timepiece in recorded history.  Even a stopped clock is right twice a day: this damn thing is never right.

The Bulletin of The Atomic Scientists dreamed the gimmick up back in 1947 , and its initial setting was “seven minutes to midnight” as in…

What sense did it make to have a clock already set at seven minutes to 12? Why wasn’t it at least a seven-minute stopwatch? What was its setting during the Black Plague? Did the dinosaurs have a Doomsday Clock? Did a wise Diplodocus and a precocious Stegasaurus see a meteor coursing through the Jurassic skies and conclude, “Oh oh. Eventually one of those is going to land here, and we’re all toast. Move the Doomsday Clock to 80 million years before midnight, let’s settle our affairs, and tell the rest of the gang that the mammals are coming…”?

The group of egg-heads devising the clock explained that it symbolized ” the urgency of the nuclear dangers that the magazine’s founders—and the broader scientific community—are trying to convey to the public and political leaders around the world.” OK, I can see that as a minor, fear-mongering news item in 1947—kind of like the climate change hysteria is now—but I would also say that when a group describes a peril as urgent and it hasn’t urged in 70 years, that isn’t just old news, it isn’t newsworthy at all.

The Clock claimed we came the closest the country ever was to nuclear Armageddon in 1953, when the U.S. tested the hydrogen bomb. The scientists consulted their slide rules and a Ouija Board and moved the clock to two minutes to midnight. Later test ban treaties moved the clock back a completely arbitrary distance to 12 minutes to midnight, for some reason. The Clock moved to twelve ’til when President  Kennedy signed the Partial Test Ban Treaty in 1963, Then it slid forward again when Scary Nixon was elected, and back to twelve minutes before THE END when President Nixon signed the Strategic Arms Limitation Treaty and the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty.

Oddly, when we really might have been minutes from annihilation, in 1962 during the Cuban Missile Crisis, the scientists weren’t fooling with their silly device. They were too terrified. Probably hiding under their lab tables.

During Nobel Peace Prize winner Barack Obama’s Presidency, the Clock was moved from six minutes to midnight to just three minutes to midnight, an ominous jump forward, or good news, depending on your perspective. ( Hmmm. The Clock’s advance wasn’t generally reported—Democratic President, you know—so it was bit like the proverbial Doomsday Clock in the forest.)  After all, it was a minute closer to midnight in 1947! That might mean that the Clock is running backwards, although in weird ways, and that it picks up a minute every 60 years or so.  Doesn’t that mean that in dinosaur-time, after 60 million years we’ll be back more than an hour from Doomsday?

No, it just means that the Clock is a silly, incoherent propaganda device.

Now that President Trump is in office and “ARRGHHHH!” is the official motto of the entire establishment Left, these scientists nobody has heard of have moved their old Clock from three minutes to midnight to two-and-a-half minutes to midnight, so we’re in big trouble now!

Of course, this foolishness means absolutely nothing, but the movement of the Clock is suddenly news again. After all, it is useful to spread the message that the President is a reckless danger to civilization! He made the Clock move! All the News That’s Fit To Print!

No, he didn’t make the Clock do anything. A group of politically active scientists made the clock move, to broadcast their own political opinion, as if it has any greater significance than, say, yours.

Or Adam Sandler’s.

Or Mookie Betts’s.

Or Barney’s.

Writes Dave Taylor…

“…The Doomsday Clock has long been a partisan, not a scientific, device. As one critic of the clock noted, “It’s clear from its movements over the past seven decades that the Doomsday Clock is more about politics than any sort of scientific measure of the risk of global nuclear war. After all, it has routinely counted down after a Republican wins the White House, and ticked up when Democrats reclaim the presidency.”

Another Clock critic accurately describes it as “a more reliable measure of liberal angst than the risk of a nuclear holocaust, and it should be treated as such.” Ah, but who is going to pay attention to a report that says, “The Liberal Anxiety Clock is now just three minutes from midnight!” What happens when The Liberal Anxiety Clock strikes midnight? Well, this…

But I digress.

So why is the random movement of the Doomsday Clock news? It isn’t, and any news source that reports it as such without noting that that the Clock-watchers have been screaming that the sky has minutes left before falling since before anyone writing about it was a zygote is trafficking in fake news. What else would you call it?

Now scientists are planning to march on Washington for yet another purely partisan “We hate you!” protest of the existence of President Trump, and, by extension, free elections, the U.S. government, its institutions, democracy and the millions of voters responsible for this vile outrage. I’m hoping they don’t wear mushroom cloud hats and scream “Fuck you  Fuck you Fuck you!” like Madonna did, but you never know.

Oh, some scientists have argued that a partisan march by their colleagues will only further politicize and undermine the credibility of scientific research, and that is true.  On the other hand, it will brilliantly illustrate why even the sciences cannot be trusted, since once researchers allow political agendas to creep into their research designs and conclusions, the research is tainted. Good to know!

The Doomsday Clock, therefore, has its uses, as stupid and transparently political as it is. Every time the Clock’s movements are reported as news, you know that the journalists doing the reporting are not objectively informing the public, but furthering their own agenda, as well as that of the politically motivated scientists, by reporting something that is meaningless as worthy of public attention.

***

Fun Fact: That’s British WW II era songstress Vera Lynn singing her iconic “We’ll Meet Again” as Doomsday arrives in “Dr. Strangelove.”

Vera is 100 years old, and still singing: she will be releasing a new album this year!

If we make it, that is…

_______________

Pointer and Source: Acculturated

66 Comments

Filed under Arts & Entertainment, Ethics Alarms Award Nominee, Etiquette and manners, Government & Politics, History, Journalism & Media, Research and Scholarship, Science & Technology

66 responses to “Vintage Fake News: The Ridiculous Doomsday Clock

  1. E2 (nee Elizabeth I)

    “During Nobel Peace Prize winner Barack Obama’s Presidency, the Clock ominously moved from six minutes to midnight to just three minutes to midnight…”

    Was this reported? Anywhere? Anywhere at all? No. And it’s res ipsa loquitor: The Doomsday Clock is only newsworthy to the media when it helps them attack the leaders they have chosen to destroy.

    PS The dinosaur bit made me laugh out loud.

  2. Matthew B

    The attack on Trump can’t even be consistent. Supposedly Trump is merely Putin’s puppet. Why would Putin attack the US when we’re under his control now? Or the reverse, why would Trump attack his best friend?

  3. Chris

    Agreed on most of this. The Doomsday Clock is useless, and anyone who puts faith in it is stupid.

    The March for Science, however, is necessary and a good thing.

    • Re: the last. Why do you say that? Will that still be true if it degenerates into partisan grandstanding, like the Women’s March? Shouldn’t scientists be believed based on their work, and not based on mass protests?

      • Chris

        Shouldn’t scientists be believed based on their work, and not based on mass protests?

        Yes. They are not currently believed based on their work, due to the efforts of Republicans, including the president, who have misrepresented their work to the public. Hence the need for the protest.

        • Al Gore claimed we’d be under water by now. They aren’t believed because they over-hype their findings, hide and bury inconvenient data, talk among themselves about flaws they won’t admit in public, and their models still don’t work. Can’t blame that on Trump, Chris. And the mainstream media refuses to cover stories like this one:http://www.nationalreview.com/article/444668/whistle-blower-scientist-exposes-shoddy-climate-science-noaa

          • Chris

            Al Gore is not a scientist.

            Why are you using Al Gore as a reason to distrust scientists and oppose the idea of scientists protesting?

            • What? Because Al Gore used and widely ciculatedflawed climate change models and climate scientist propaganda to make his documentary. You don’t think that was his argument, do you? Al is a scientific dunce; he didn’t understand half of what he was talking about. I assumed that you had the integrity not to intentionally misunderstand what should be obvious to anyone dealing in this topic: Al is a well-paid celebrity mouthpiece. What he says, however, is based 100% on dubious and flawed models and over-simplified distillation of research designed to convince those politically inclined to buy any environmental theory that shuts down commerce and industry.

              • Chris

                over-simplified distillation

                I agree with this part, which is why “Al Gore claimed we’d be underwater by now” is irrelevant. Did actual scientists make this claim? Was there a consensus on that?

                Because right now, what’s happening is that 97% of scientists* agree that AGW is happening. They don’t all agree on its effects, or a timeline, or what should be done about it. But they agree that it is a thing that exists, and that it’s a problem.

                That is what is being denied by the President and the party in control of both houses in Congress. That’s a problem that Americans should be made aware of. What’s a good way to make Americans aware of a problem? A protest.

                *Yes, the 97% figure is reliable and has been duplicated many times; the “debunkings” have not been convincing to me in the slightest.

                • 1. Science is not a matter of which opinion is more popular.
                  2. Denying that the earth has been warming is stupid, since that is demonstrably true. Denying that there has been sufficient proof of what has caused it, how long it will continue, how fast its effects will take place, whether conditions will change, and whether there is anything to do about it is not stupid. It is wise.
                  3. The despicable approach of hysteria advocates is that acknowledging #1 must mean accepting their unsubstantiated assertions about #2. Until #2 is fairly shown, #1 literally doesn’t matter.

                  • Chris

                    1. Science is not a matter of which opinion is more popular.

                    Of course not. There is consensus because the science has been done, and justified the consensus.

                    2. Denying that the earth has been warming is stupid, since that is demonstrably true. Denying that there has been sufficient proof of what has caused it, how long it will continue, how fast its effects will take place, whether conditions will change, and whether there is anything to do about it is not stupid. It is wise.

                    …You realize that all of these issues are being debated in the mainstream scientific community, right? I mean, nearly all of them agree that it is partially caused by man, though they don’t all agree on how much. How long it will continue, how fast its effects will take place, where conditions will change, and whether there is anything to do about it are questions that are not all agreed upon even by the people who will be attending this march.

                    As far as I’m aware, no scientist believes that global warming is a hoax started by the Chinese. That is stupid, but that is what our president has said. You are soft-pedaling.

                    3. The despicable approach of hysteria advocates is that acknowledging #1 must mean accepting their unsubstantiated assertions about #2.

                    For the reasons I just explained, no, it doesn’t.

          • Chris

            And the mainstream media refuses to cover stories like this one

            Is it possible they’re not covering it because it’s bullshit? The original source is The Daily Mail, which has a reputation of getting caught misrepresenting scientists to cast doubt on global warming literally dozens of times. I haven’t looked into this one, but my time management skills tell me “Why even bother?”

            • Interestingly vigorous attack on what you consider a shaky source of info…

              A vigor oddly absent when the dubious “report” was published “proving” Trump is compromised by his Russian puppeteers. Indeed, quite the opposite, I think you defended the shaky info.

              Interesting.

              • Chris

                tex, are you saying that the United States’ 17 intelligence agencies are as dubious a source as a British tabloid?

                Or are you referring to the initial report by Christopher Steele?

                I don’t remember ever saying either report “proved” anything, just that there was a lot of circumstantial evidence backing them up, and that I found it plausible.

                Neither source had a reputation for making up this type of info. The CIA has never–not once–compiled a report suggesting that the president of the United States could be compromised by a foreign power. So when that happened, yes, I was willing to listen. Why wouldn’t I be? The idea that the CIA (and the other intelligence agencies involved) made it all up is possible, but since this is unprecedented, there’s no reason for that to be the default assumption.

                The Daily Mail, on the other hand, has a reputation for misrepresenting climate science. It does that all the time. The default assumption that they are doing the same here is a fair and rational one.

                • You’ve been debunked on this before. Don’t embarrass yourself trotting out worn out talking points.

                  • I just like to note when your partisan blinders cause inconsistency.

                  • Chris

                    I don’t feel embarrassed at all. I made specific points relating to this topic, and those points would not be addressed by referring to a previous conversation. Address them or don’t; don’t point to a previous argument that you are oh-so-convinced you won. You aren’t nearly as impressive a debater as you think you are.

                    • Bless your heart. I barely engaged you on that topic. It was Jack and humble who dissected your assertions thoroughly.

                      Nice try though.

                    • Chris

                      And right now I’m addressing you, and asking you specific questions. Again, engage or don’t. But it’s unseemly to jerk yourself off in public this way.

                    • You keep trying to divert this as some sort of personal issue. I’ve already indicated it was Jack and Hnle who disassembled your argument before. My allusion to that has nothing to do with me. Quit the trickery.

                    • Chris

                      What argument? The argument I made here os brand new, and has to do with the reliability of the Daily Mail; the comparison to the reliability of or intelligence agencies was tangential, and brought up by YOU.

                      No one has “dissembled” the argument I made about the reliability of the Daily Mail. You are welcome to try. Or you’re welcome to keep jerking yourself off.

                    • “What argument? The argument I made here os brand new, and has to do with the reliability of the Daily Mail; the comparison to the reliability of or intelligence agencies was tangential, and brought up by YOU.

                      No one has “dissembled” the argument I made about the reliability of the Daily Mail. You are welcome to try. Or you’re welcome to keep jerking yourself off.

                      You have a juvenile penchant for diverting topics via personal attacks. I’m not sure why.

                      I’ve merely noted, with bemusement, a general inconsistency in your willingness to trust shaky sources when it benefits your world-view and your unwillingness to trust shaky sources when it opposes your world-view.

                      I think the best solution, for you, is to not trust shaky sources altogether. I think that’s a valid take away.

            • Do you know it is bullshit, or do you just want it to be? There is a real whistle-blower. The MSM has no trouble relaying far more dubious claims when it suits its agenda. I haven’t posted on this expressly because I am waiting, but if the claim was easily proven to be false, doing so would also be a MSM duty. Based on recent experience, the fact that the National Review, the Washington Times and Fox is reporting the story suggests that the familiar pattern of the Left’s media trying to cast doubt on inconvenient facts by leaving them reported only by the conservative sources for a long as possible.

              • Chris

                Do you know it is bullshit, or do you just want it to be?

                If I knew it was, I wouldn’t have said it was “possible.” And I would have proven it instead of saying I hadn’t looked into it.

                I haven’t posted on this expressly because I am waiting, but if the claim was easily proven to be false, doing so would also be a MSM duty.

                I don’t know if the MSM has a duty to debunk every bit of fake news from the Daily Mail, but I agree in this case since this is an important topic and lots of people will be misled (if it is false). If it’s true, the MSM also has a duty to report it.

              • Chris

                Jack and tex,

                The scientist that the Daily Mail relied on to make its claims now says his complaint was misrepresented.

                Tuesday, in an interview with E&E News, Bates himself downplayed any suggestion of misconduct. “The issue here is not an issue of tampering with data, but rather really of timing of a release of a paper that had not properly disclosed everything it was,” he told reporter Scott Waldman. And Bates told ScienceInsider that he is wary of his critique becoming a talking point for those skeptical of human-caused climate change. But it was important for this conversation about data integrity to happen, he says. “That’s where I came down after a lot of soul searching. I knew people would misuse this. But you can’t control other people,” he says.

                At a House science committee hearing yesterday, Rush Holt, CEO of AAAS (publisher of Science and ScienceInsider) stood by the 2015 paper. “This is not the making of a big scandal—this is an internal dispute between two factions within an agency,” Holt said in response to a question from Representative Lamar Smith (R–TX), the panel’s chairman, and a longtime critic of NOAA’s role in the Karl paper. This past weekend, Smith issued a statement hailing Bates for talking about “NOAA’s senior officials playing fast and loose with the data in order to meet a politically predetermined conclusion.”

                Some climate scientists are concerned that the hubbub is obscuring the more important message: that the NOAA research has generally proved accurate. “I’m a little confused as to why this is a big deal,” says Zeke Hausfather, a climate scientist with Berkeley Earth, a California nonprofit climate research group that has examined surface temperatures. He’s the lead author of a paper published in January in Science Advances that found Karl’s estimates of sea surface temperature—a key part of the work—matched well with estimates drawn from other methods.

                Researchers say the Karl paper’s findings are also in line with findings from the Met Office, the U.K. government’s climate agency, which preceded Karl’s work, and findings in a recent paper by scientists at the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts, an alliance of 34 states based in Reading, U.K. And although other researchers have reported evidence that the rise in global temperature has slowed recently, they have not challenged the ethics of Karl’s team, or the quality of the data they used.

                This is exactly as I predicted: the Mail took a technical, inside-baseball argument among climate scientists and turned it into “WHISTLEBLOWER EXPOSES CLIMATE SCIENCE SCAM.” That’s what the Mail does. Every time.

                And that’s why the mainstream media is smart not to report on their stories.

                • It would have been smart to report the story correctly, rather than embargo it to avoid possible news they didn’t like. This doesn’t say that nothing happened. It says that the sole source to report it hyped it.

                  The issue here is not an issue of tampering with data, but rather really of timing of a release of a paper that had not properly disclosed everything it was,” he told reporter Scott Waldman. And Bates told ScienceInsider that he is wary of his critique becoming a talking point for those skeptical of human-caused climate change. But it was important for this conversation about data integrity to happen, he says. “That’s where I came down after a lot of soul searching. I knew people would misuse this. But you can’t control other people,” he says.

                  Translation: confirmation bias in the scientific community is leading them to cut corners where climate change research is concerned. Not data fabrication; still not good. And it implicates trust.

        • Erm. Chicken and Egg.

          They behaved in a partisan manner before any partisans opposed them…

          • Chris

            Oh, bullshit. They protested before this? They aren’t reacting to the fact that Republicans have been lying about climate science for years?

            • There’s no point being a partisan and using every opportunity to smear Republicans. Whether or not a good deal of Republicans are man-made climate change skeptics is irrelevant… the dynamics involved causing skepticism to coalesce in specific places is complex.

              Needless to say, skeptics of man-made climate change only entrenched, and in some aspects unhealthily so, because man-made climate change pushers behaved in nakedly partisan manners.

              You have an irresponsible penchant for pretending like the world began about 12 years ago and all political faults can have their origins found there.

        • Michael Ejercito

          Yes. They are not currently believed based on their work, due to the efforts of Republicans, including the president, who have misrepresented their work to the public. Hence the need for the protest.

          Then they need to represent their work better.

          How many marches did Albert Einstein lead? Or Isaac Newton?

          • E2 (nee Elizabeth I)

            “Scientists” — however you define that term — have become politicized and monetized , on issues from global warming (and attacking other scientists who have collected even slightly different data) to T-cell research to pharmaceutical scientists who stop making new antibiotics (Pfizer) because it doesn’t serve the bottom line. A march of which group of scientists will occur? This is group bias, however positive. Scientists come in all shapes and sizes, and to characterize them all in a positive light is naive. Many scientists pursue their work “because they can” regardless of geophysical, human or societal impact. Others pursue their particular work because of their beliefs and ideologies. A “march” of scientists will only include the politicized group.

    • Tippy Scales

      During this march for science, I hope they will explain something.

      How come if I say “wait a minute, I’m not convinced the climate change matter is completely settled,” I’ll get accused of denying science — but the same people leveling this accusation will insist a person doesn’t need a vagina to be a woman. If that ain’t denying science, what is?

      • Chris

        Tippy, your question is idiotic. Please google the difference between sex and gender before embarrassing yourself further.

        • Michael Ejercito

          Sometimes, for various reasons, some women can never pregnant.

          But women can never under any circumstances get other women pregnant.

          And what does marching have to do with science? You claimed that the politicians are misrepresenting science to the public. Even so, why would that matter? Politicians misrepresent science all the time, from quantum mechanics to nuclear physics to genetics to mathematics.

          When Andrew Wiles wanted to convince people that Fermat’s Last Theorem was true, did he lead any marches? Write letters to the British Parliament? Use ad hominem attacks against doubters? Argue that even if a counterexample to the theorem existed, we get clean air and water?

          Or did he simply complete the proof?

          What about Watson and Crick? Why did they not lead mass protests to convince people that DNA existed, instead of using that stupid scientific method to carefully describe experiments to prove the existence of DNA.

          Or Albert Einstein? Why, the idea that objects shrink and clock slow down as they move must have sounded preposterous. Why not lead marches to get people to believe in special relativity? accuse doubters of working for Big Oil? Argue that even if special relativity was wrong, we at least get clean air and water?

          Who would have taken Wiles, or Watson, or Crick, or Einstein, or Charles Darwin, or Isaac Newton, or Leonhard Euler, or Terence Tao, or Pythagoras, or Euclid seriously if they resorted to using public marches, instead of publishing proofs and performing experiments, to prove the truth of their theorems?

          • Chris

            More stupid questions, that you could easily answer yourself if you wanted to. Those other scientific discoveries you mention did not have enormous and clear implications for the survival and quality of life of the human race. Climate science does.

            You also employ a false dichotomy:

            When Andrew Wiles wanted to convince people that Fermat’s Last Theorem was true, did he lead any marches? Write letters to the British Parliament? Use ad hominem attacks against doubters? Argue that even if a counterexample to the theorem existed, we get clean air and water?

            Or did he simply complete the proof?

            Your question implies that climate scientists have not done the work to prove the theory of AGW. They absolutely have. That our current government would like to ignore and discredit their findings does not change that.

            Finally, the fact that other scientists have not protested does not do anything to prove that doing so is wrong.

            • But it is wrong, because, as Michael is trying to explain, truth is not established by who shouts the loudest, or by who threatens more disruptions. Demonstrations convey the incredibly false theory that volume equals anything but volume. This is like Trump equating TV ratings with quality. It is a misapplication of majority rules principles. If one scientist is right and a million are wrong, the one scientist wins. The protest is a dumb embrace of the “settled science so shut up” theory. Scientists should know better.

              • Chris

                I don’t understand what you mean here, Jack. No one is saying the scientists are right because they are protesting, or because there’s a lot of them. A protest never establishes “truth” in and of itself; it’s designed to shine a light toward an issue, or to pressure the government to make a change.

                • Ugh. Lawyers don’t protest in front of the Supreme Court, Chris. They argue. Protesting is political. Science is not. Scientists should not allow politics to infect their work in any way. It’s awfully simple. No scientific argument is advanced by demonstrations.

                  • Michael Ejercito

                    I should add that part of the scientific method is subjecting your findings to discreditation.

                    Trying to discredit scientific claims is an inevitable part of the process.

                  • Chris

                    Ugh. Lawyers don’t protest in front of the Supreme Court, Chris. They argue. Protesting is political. Science is not. Scientists should not allow politics to infect their work in any way. It’s awfully simple. No scientific argument is advanced by demonstrations.

                    Bad analogy. We don’t have any government body that decides which scientific claims will be accepted or rejected. And yet, our government under the Trump administration will cut funding to important climate science research. It is also likely that Trump will target scientists under the government’s employ who are strong on the global warming issue. He’s already asked for a “list of names:”

                    https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/powerpost/wp/2016/12/13/energy-dept-rejects-trumps-request-to-name-climate-change-workers-who-remain-worried/?utm_term=.67e7f3ff7bde

                    Lawyers advancing legal arguments have a system in place for that, and a process that must be respected by the government. There is no such governmental process for scientists, just a petty, ignorant man heading a petty, ignorant group that is going to pull funding to please oil companies.

                    • What? You are seriously saying that there is no process by which professionals in the field can relay the results of scientific research, so the alternative is carrying signs and chanting in the mall?

                    • Chris

                      What? You are seriously saying that there is no process by which professionals in the field can relay the results of scientific research, so the alternative is carrying signs and chanting in the mall?

                      I made it fairly clear there is no governmental process for their results to be respected by the government, unlike with lawyers, which is the group you compared them to. I also made clear the implications this has for their work.

                    • All you have made clear is that you are grasping at a ridiculous argument, and saying that a profession that is obligated to persuade using the truth should seek acceptance by using demonstrations.

                    • Chris

                      All you have made clear is that you are grasping at a ridiculous argument, and saying that a profession that is obligated to persuade using the truth should seek acceptance by using demonstrations.

                      I don’t see them as mutually exclusive.

        • Tippy Scales

          Thanks for your well-reasoned response.

          I know the damned difference. But if someone was born with a penis, science tells me it’s a man…unless it has both a penis and vagina, in which case it’s a hermaphrodite. But it sure as hell ain’t a woman. Science.

          And ix-nay on calling people’s responses “idiotic.” It makes you look…well…like a word that starts with an “i.”

  4. John Billingsley

    I love Vera. She may have done as much to pull the Brits through WW II as Winnie. Supported her nation’s troops during the Falklands and gave a tremendous performance at the Falkland Island Tribute. Where are our entertainers who come anywhere near showing such support to their nation?

  5. Good for Vera Lynn! I hope I’m enjoying my art then. (I wonder of the doomsday clock is a personal clock and fits how old someone feels.

  6. A.M. Golden

    And as Vera would say, “It’s a Lovely Day Tomorrow”. That’s my reaction when the Doomsday Clock comes up.

  7. Other Bill

    Jack Marshall at his best. Hilarious. I need to find the scene from “Animal House” where the band is led into a cul de sac during the hijacked homecoming parade to get a visual on the scientists’ March on Washington. Query: Will they all be able to get to Washington? At the same time?

  8. Other Bill

    Acqui esta!

  9. Tippy Scales

    When they say “scientists are going to march” I think they’re referring to climatologists worried about their global warming research funds getting slashed. I doubt many botanists or entomologists will show up. (Although I think I read in the New York Times that when Trump was a kid, he liked to pull the wings off flies and clip the blooms from roses).

    Regarding the Doomsday Clock: Did earlier cultures have Doomsday Hourglasses? Doomsday Sundials?

    The Doomsday Clepsydrae must’ve struck midnight as the first spear was being thrown in the Battle of Corinth.

  10. Neil Dorr

    Jack,

    Friendly correction (I think):

    “The group of egg-heads devising the clock sexplained that it symbolized”

    Those dirty, dirty scientists …

  11. Pennagain

    Delightful post, Jack, thanks.

    I’ve always lived somewhat out of the loop — missed things like the Doomy Clock. Seems like a joke with a history. Ha.

    “We’ll Meet Again” is the only song that makes me want to sing and sway in a chorus. The matching video to the “Dr. Strangelove” is this one, the one the singer has in mind:

  12. Phlinn

    The combination of the topic at hand and the song by Vera Lynn just made me think of We will all go together when we go by Tom Lehrer. Which is at least funny scare mongering…

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