Notes from the Anthropocene: Insuring the Apocalypse and Other Links


More adventures in nuclear incompetence: Lily Hay Newman, “Air Force Security Failed a Takeover Drill at a Nuclear Silo.”


Climate Change, Catastrophe, and the Anthropocene

We’re doomed. “A Galaxy Far, Far Away . . . Will Hit Ours.”

Lindsay Abrams, “Researchers: The Collapse of Greenland’s Ice Sheet Could Be a Bigger Disaster Than We Thought.”

Ari Phillips, “In Landmark Class Action, Farmers Insurance Sues Local Government for Ignoring Climate Change.” Is that what we need? For the insurance companies to get involved?

Yes. McKenzie Funk, “Insuring the Apocalypse.”

Paul Krugman, “Cutting Back on Carbon.”

On the flooding in the Balkans.

Everything is the worst: Ryan Koronowski, “House Votes to Deny Climate Science and Ties Pentagon’s Hands on Climate Change.”

And scientists agree, we should just start calling climate change “You will be burnt to a crisp and die.”

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Real Nuclear Wastelands

Kate Brown in an article for Slate, “Life in a Real Nuclear Watsteland,” writes about contaminated areas of Russia:

The Techa became a flowing radioactive reservoir in 1949 when engineers at the plutonium plant ran out of underground storage containers for high-level radioactive waste. A Dixie cup of this waste could kill everyone in a large ballroom. Compelled by the arms race, the plant director ordered it dumped in the Techa River. The men running the plant didn’t tell anyone about this decision. The 28,000 Russian, Bashkir, and Tatar farmers living on the river—drinking, cooking, and bathing with river water—had no idea. In the 1950s and ’60s special forces resettled most of the 16 contaminated villages on the Techa, but a few villages were too large and expensive to move, so they stayed. Muslumovo is one.

Post-ThxGiving Links: DFW Syllabi, Imminent Danielewski Hyperarchivalism, billions and billions of dollars, and the Bomb (as always)

Katie Rophie over at Slate discusses David Foster Wallace’s syllabi: “The Extraordinary Syllabi of David Foster Wallace: What His Lesson Plans Teach us About How to Live.”

The New York Times‘ Julie Bosman informs us that Mark Z. Danielewksi is going to publish a 27 volume serialized novel, The Familiar, appearing every three months beginning in 2014. I wonder how long each volume will be. . . . Also, an interesting interview w/ Danielewski.

From Inside Higher Ed: report finds literary research an inefficient use of university money according to Marc Bousquet, in his article from The Minnesota Review, “We Work.”

xkcd money chart.

George Orwell on the nuclear bomb.

And a pretty great nuclear bibliography.