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Safe… 15 March 2011

Posted by marisacat in Inconvenient Voice of the Voter.

A Japan Self-Defence Force member reacts after rescuing a four-month-old baby girl in Ishimaki, northern Japan

A Japan Self-Defence Force member reacts after rescuing a four-month-old baby girl in Ishimaki, northern Japan
Safe… as houses. Truly. What can happen. Not a problem. Not Chernobyl. No danger. From anything. At all. Ever.




1. Jack Crow - 15 March 2011

Each time some corporate flunky bossfucker said, well “it’s not Chernobyl” my rotted heart whispered to itself, “…yet.”

As long as they’re trying to pretend it’s not a disaster, we have every reason to believe it’s even worse then we can imagine.

marisacat - 15 March 2011

we have every reason to believe it’s even worse then we can imagine.

That is my assessment. Any mention of Chernobyl makes me crazy.

BTW, France 24 is forecasting rain, in Tokyo and where ever else. winds shift from their current (or so it is reported) easterly directions…. anotehr big “aftershock” near Tokyo… and imo limited opinion, all bets are off.

2. Jack Crow - 15 March 2011

rotting heart*

brinn - 15 March 2011

Hey, if it’s still in the process of decay, at lest that means you HAVE one, unlike so many of the dismal fuckers….

Hi Jack! I’m brinn! 😉

Jack Crow - 15 March 2011

You’re probably right, brinn. And hello to you.

3. marisacat - 15 March 2011

4th reactor on fire again

brinn - 15 March 2011

Yeah, that sombitch is the scary one, ’cause even tho it was shut cold when the quake hit, it apparently has a boatload of spent fuel sitting in the cooling pools which ain’t so cool right about now….of all the radiation that has been reported, I’m thinking most of it comes from there….though #2 isn’t lookin’ too good right about now either…

I’m scared to try to contact people again…they were ok on Sunday in Osaka, but today? One of my friends is in the US, away from his family right now, he said they were fine, but….that was Sunday…

marisacat - 15 March 2011

It’s raining in the NE in Japan… too.

Fuel, gas is rationed, lines in Tokyo at shops and gas stations… and so on.

Maybe if you are in a far western hamlet, well stocked you are OK.

brinn - 15 March 2011

It’s also snowing again with temps expected to drop even further….

TEPCO completely screwed the pooch (how surprising! not.) in their dealings with the rolling blackouts yesterday, saying one thing doing another and changing stuff all around — there were huge messes with commutes in Tokyo yesterday…

marisacat - 15 March 2011

People landed yesterday at SFO from Tokyo and the stories were horrible. OF TOKYO…. forget the rest, which is obviously in worse shape.

yeah but PM Kan is no peach. They say he “has taken the reins”. I doubt it matters, or has even actually happened.

brinn - 15 March 2011

Who is “they”???

People are going to fucking freeze to death if they cannot get supplies to them.

marisacat - 15 March 2011

well “they” being NHK and also in some print reports.

There is some report around that he blew up at TEPCO.

As if that is worth anything.

He is so clearly a tired out hack.

catnip - 15 March 2011

I heard earlier that the company finally sent a lot of their workers home (if they have homes to go to) because of the increased threats.

Madman in the Marketplace - 15 March 2011

the cooling pools are what worry me at this point, too.

4. brinn - 15 March 2011

Fucking spent fuel pools are boiling….screw meltdown, burning spent fuel will release enough radiation to make the entire country sick.

damn damn damn

And now something’s up with #5…

marisacat - 15 March 2011

oh 5 and 6 lost cooling hours ago. I say countdown to explosion. Same route as the other 4.

NHK is doing things that US and BP did in the gulf, obscuring. They have changed, in the middle of this, how they refer to Units 1 and 2, adopting the names and dropping the numbers. Daini is one and Daichi the other.

Just meant to obscure imo.

brinn - 15 March 2011

Actually, Daiichi is the name of the plant itself Fukushima Daiichi — then there are the multiple reactors — 6 — those are referred to by #.
If I remember correctly, I think that the Daini plant is a separate, though not far away facility….

You’ve got to give the translators a bit of a break, Japanese to English is one of the hardest translation to do in real time…

brinn - 15 March 2011

Yeah, Daini is a separate facility – with 4 units….

Here’s a link to TEPCO’s press releases, FWIW (aka not much):

marisacat - 15 March 2011

yes the names have been in use from the beginning, but they also are numbered on the side walls (when there were walls)…

And from what NHK said, Unit 1 shall bear one name, and Unit 2 shall bear the other. Etc. Horns blow.

But it means the numbers of reactors burned burning, out of commision become obscured.

BP and ObRama Gubmint played a game with volumes and measurements of oil.

brinn - 15 March 2011

Yep, it should be clear that all 6 at Daiichi are in various stages of all fucked up (Daiichi which actually translates to “the big one” more or less, is often referred to as #1 (maybe what they meant by Unit 1?), as it came online first way back when), Daini, has 4 and though those aren’t the ones talked about much and no fires and/or explosions have spewed out of there, I am sure that all is not well at #2 either…they may know as little about as we do…

I’m thinking that it is probably really hard for media (the American media especially) to wrap its tiny little brain around the fact that we are talking about 10, yes, 10 nuclear reactors in a 20 mile radius…

diane - 15 March 2011

Seems to be a disturbing blackout of what’s going on across the majority of nooz outlets.

5. catnip - 15 March 2011

Blitzer: “You never want a fire at a nuclear power plant.”

Well, gee, thanks for that news, Mr Fucking Obvious!

brinn - 15 March 2011

I am sooooo glad I not longer have cable!!

6. brinn - 15 March 2011

Anyone heard anything about #3? That the one that has the MOX fuel in it…

marisacat - 15 March 2011

haven’t heard anything. No news is bad news in this case.

brinn - 15 March 2011


7. marisacat - 15 March 2011

BBC full text

There has been a fresh fire at the quake-stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in northern Japan.

The new blaze began at reactor four. The plant has already been hit by four explosions, triggering radiation leaks and sparking health concerns.

Friday’s 9.0-magnitude quake and tsunami in north-east Japan damaged the plant’s cooling functions, forcing the operator to use sea water.

More than 3,000 have been confirmed dead and thousands are missing.

Officials have warned people within 20-30km of the nuclear plant to either leave the area or stay indoors.

The Tokyo Electric Power Co, which owns the Fukushima facility, said on Wednesday that efforts were under way to put out the latest fire.

8. brinn - 15 March 2011


Front page at dkos, by MB…

For those confused, troubled, irritated and worried about the media reporting of what’s happening with the Japanese electricity-generating reactors ….

electricity-generating reactors?!?!?…what do we have some sort of fucking aversion to the word nuclear?!?!?

boys are going with their dad to grandparents tomorrow afternoon….I WILL need to break things….

for now, I must remember to breathe…

marisacat - 15 March 2011

well Kos and MB, faithful retainers of the status quo. Always there to reinstate love of county, devotion o those who serve and to The State.

MB is nothing but an operative and thug. So entertaining how people almost loved him.

brinn - 15 March 2011

I haven’t been there in months, but I saw a decent diary over there linked to from someone over here over here…..

….What ever happened to Plutonium Page?? Did she get a job where she has to post her real name now?? OR dos she just have the good sense not to post…hah, rhetorical question.

marisacat - 15 March 2011

I do believe in my fuzzy memory ther was some falling from grace. I am sure it was complicated and involved that other loon, MLW My L*ft W*ng.

She had a history that trickled out, or someone emailed me, I forget now. She attached herself to the Dean campaing in NH in 2003/4 — and became a big problem. It rather smelled of plant. Mole.. etc.

But you know how it is with all those creeps.

brinn - 15 March 2011

Unfortunately, yes, I know…

Sorry I asked! 8)

marisacat - 15 March 2011

Disgusting people.

catnip - 15 March 2011

She was posting in the dkos FP with her real name. I wondered what happened to her too. Not sure when she did her exit, stage left.

catnip - 15 March 2011

Her last post at dkos was on Mar 7th – health problems. Looks like she isn’t a FPer anymore. She isn’t on the “masthead” in the FAQ.

brinn - 15 March 2011

Two Suns in the Sunset, very apropos….

Madman in the Marketplace - 15 March 2011
marisacat - 15 March 2011

Had no idea she had been back to FPaging.

The last I knew of her was literally years ago.

Madman in the Marketplace - 15 March 2011

do they get a check every time they blow the corps?

9. mattes - 15 March 2011

EU recognition of Palestinian state a ‘possibility’: France

10. mattes - 15 March 2011

Japanese nuclear plant workers emerging as heroic figures in tragedy
By Brett Michael Dyke

Amid the horror and devastation of the nuclear crisis in Japan, it can be easy to miss the heroism of the 50 emergency workers trying to prevent the full meltdown of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear facility. It’s not exaggeration to say that the safety of thousands of Japanese citizens hinges on the efforts of the crew of cleanup workers left behind after the remainder of the facility’s roughly 800 employees have been evacuated amid hazardous levels of radiation. Even in a culture that places a premium on self-sacrifice, these ordinary workers are being extraordinarily selfless — and could conceivably make the ultimate sacrifice for their fellow citizens’ well-being.

Who these 50 workers are remains something of a mystery. Their employer, the Tokyo Electric Company, has not provided their details.


. Plant managers “may also be asking for people to volunteer to receive additional exposure,”

Yahoo News

11. mattes - 15 March 2011


When the ill-fated plant in the Ukraine melted down, a large number of the 176 workers on duty that evening were exposed to enormous doses of radiation, with many of them dying within weeks of the disaster. The plant’s meltdown and the subsequent environmental contamination are believed to have adversely affected the health of roughly half a million men and women in and around the Ukraine in the quarter century since the Chernobyl incident.

Madman in the Marketplace - 15 March 2011

the sad thing is, the whole world should know their names for what they did, and I don’t think they were ever really publicized.

mattes - 15 March 2011

We are on the same page. I want to know their names, and see their faces.

I can’t imagine what they are going through, and for some reason this stresses me beyond belief.

brinn - 15 March 2011

I’m right there with you, mattes, for multiple reasons, this is stressing me…I want to strangle/slap someone(s) and hug/save others!!!

marisacat - 15 March 2011

I read somewhere last night that recently Russia has released that they believe a million cancer occurances can be linked to Chernobyl.

12. diane - 15 March 2011

From someone who has spent 39 years as a nuclear engineer (‘sobering’ commentary is an understatement here):

I can’t understand how officials can say that the releases are low, when they don’t have any instruments that are working. Their batteries have failed, and when the batteries fail, all of the instruments stop working. So it’s hard to determine what the radiation levels are, and what the pressure levels are.

The Japanese and the nuclear industry are heavily, heavily financially invested in this. My experience is that, after Three Mile Island and after Chernobyl, everybody said there wasn’t a problem, until there was a problem. So I really don’t put much faith in official pronouncements the first week of an accident.


marisacat - 15 March 2011

oh thank you for that… He has been on Democracy NOW! but I had not had a chance to pull up the transcripts… I am going to copy this and send it around.

BTW, I just heard today that strontium is what in particular gets in th fish. Only a 300 year life I see. Whew, no need to worry! We dodged the 25,000 year bullet!!


diane - 15 March 2011

You’re welcome, it was a much needed accidental discovery of someone experienced and rational for me. I’m also thinking of checking news more often at michiganmessenger.com.

and yeah, the food chain, ….. so very fucked ….

brinn - 15 March 2011

Soylent Green is radioactive people!!!!

Sorry. That may have been uncalled for.

diane - 15 March 2011

don’t apologize to me hon, took the words right out of my mouth.

brinn - 15 March 2011


brinn - 15 March 2011

Thanks, di — I just printed out a copy of that myself….

Though I have to say that the effect on me has been less than “sobering”….

marisacat - 15 March 2011

I added a liquor taht will go down my gullet to this week’s Safeway order (it was also on a deepr than usual mark down, 😆 ).

Some numbing is on order.

brinn - 15 March 2011

Uh, oh! I thought you couldn’t drink for health reasons….? Be careful with yourself friend! Still, inquiring minds (who are stuck with nasty cheapass beer due to budget constraints), want to know…what liquor???

marisacat - 15 March 2011

oh no I just canot tolerate any longer what little I ever could drink, mostly red wine and champagne, Campari….

Too strong or heavy, or whatever.

But I found out that dark rum and that irish Cream Whiskey liqueur…. go down. I think my body says Hello! SUGAR! and ignores the alcohol.

brinn - 15 March 2011

Sweet!! Drink an Irish Cream (with out without dark rum) for me!! 😉

marisacat - 15 March 2011

oh I don’t mix in dark rum, I am glad to get one potion down the chute.

diane - 15 March 2011

salute honey, off to buy some red soon myself …(never cared for white wine, now I actually despise it after that telling picture Marisa posted a short while back of Obombster and the Boyos toasting one another’s vulgarity in Sly Con Valley)

brinn - 15 March 2011

One of my fave reds is an Australian merlot/cab mix called Black Opal — if you haven’t tried it and its available (and budget allows, it’s not super pricey), I recomnend it highly!

diane - 15 March 2011

thanks… no wine expert here …I generally drink the cheap beer myself as of late. I’m really ‘easy’ in the wine department, so unrefined as to enjoy cheap screw cap Lambrusco when I do drink wine. Funny thing though, I really don’t care at all for cheap brandy or cognac on the rare occasions I drink it.

13. brinn - 15 March 2011


The use of up to 50% of MOX does not change the operating characteristics of a reactor, though the plant must be designed or adapted slightly to take it. More control rods are needed. For more than 50% MOX loading, significant changes are necessary and a reactor needs to be designed accordingly.

14. brinn - 15 March 2011

A rose by any other name…


“Crises pose a special challenge to users of Nukespeak, since the extreme pressures of the moment tend to produce irruptions of unsettling new metaphors…”

15. brinn - 15 March 2011

The latest from the no-shit-Sherlock Dept.
“There’s a lot of genuine confusion about what is going on”….

No worries tho the Mericuns are comin’!! I’m sure the Japanese are thrilled.

16. marisacat - 15 March 2011

from The Age

[A]t least 750 workers were evacuated yesterday morning when another explosion ruptured the inner containment building at Reactor No. 2 at the Dai-ichi plant.

The explosion released a surge of radiation 800 times more intense than the recommended hourly exposure limit in Japan.

But Mr Gregoric said some people were still in the dark about the threat in Fukushima.

“Even some people have not left Fukushima city, which is one of the worst hit,” he said.

“I still know people who haven’t left Sendai because they just don’t have information.

“The most important thing now is accurate reporting, accurate reporting and information, and honesty, and all those three things are lacking.”

He said residents were queueing for four hours to get water, petrol had run out and there were rolling electricity cuts,

17. BooHooHooMan - 15 March 2011

What a cartoon: Larry O’Brien used an explanatory disaster clip from – wait for it – “The West Wing” with, ya know, President Bartlett SheenDaddy handling the whole meltdown scenario. Well not the whole meltdown scenario when factoring in Charlie not attending Mass so often. Anyways.
O’ Brien now has Bill Wet Brain Richardson on:

“Well Larry, with nuclear,
you don’t get pollution.”


brinn - 15 March 2011


No asshole (not your BHHM), you don’t get pollution you get mutated, then dead.

BooHooHooMan - 15 March 2011

Well sure Brinn, Cancer, genetic defects, radiation blisters, but not “pollution” pollution.
{{{Thank God it’s Safe!}}}
Get with the program Brinn!

I have long held an absurd position.
Build it it EVERYBODY’S back yard.
Have fissile materials and critical missile components available in every store, shop and roadside stand on Earth. Let’s make this quick.

All that said, right after House-Frau Jane Harman and Hubby bought Newsweek, they trotted this right out:

Why Israel Should Declare Itself a Nuclear Power
Ambiguity over Israel’s nuclear program has been the norm, but a new book argues that coming clean would actually help deter Iran.

Some tightrope act ,eh? — given their line on Iran: Seize that nuclear high ground 🙄 , game the IAEA and lock out Tehran.

So Israel’s latest? Like..TODAY –

Despite Japan, IEC chairman urges nuclear power

Yiftach Ron-Tal: In a decade we’ll have an advanced nuclear reactor in the northern Negev.

15 March 11 13:06, Michal Margalit

“Israel should build a nuclear power station, and it must be made to be safe. Hasty decisions should not be made because of what is happening in Japan,” said Israel Electric Corporation (IEC) (TASE: ELEC.B22) chairman Yiftach Ron-Tal at the Negev Conference in Eilat. “We should move forward and learn. I think that in a decade we’ll have an advanced nuclear reactor in the northern Negev.

No, no, sorry.
We only want the best for our neighbors.
Any idea how much money the Banksters of all stripes have squirreled away from these glow sticks? Fuck em all.
So, in the Insanity Reigns meantime,
I say let Iran have at.

I realize exceptionalists or those fond of the regulatory, incremental approach might be taken aback. I’d say fine, but we need to shake off the old thinking: allow limited nuclear exchange.
See how it goes. Oh it does? And keeps going?


marisacat - 15 March 2011

No pollution?

Good lord.

But then a Laurence Livermore physicist the other night baldly said our San Onofre two domed nuclear reactor is on “high ground”.

No it is literally at the water’s edge.

They say anything. At all.

Madman in the Marketplace - 15 March 2011

I almost threw something at the TV … and I LOVE my TV.

dear god we’re ruled by idiots.

18. marisacat - 15 March 2011


[I]n 1972, Stephen H. Hanauer, then a safety official with the Atomic Energy Commission, recommended that the Mark 1 system be discontinued because it presented unacceptable safety risks. Among the concerns cited was the smaller containment design, which was more susceptible to explosion and rupture from a buildup in hydrogen — a situation that may have unfolded at the Fukushima Daiichi plant. Later that same year, Joseph Hendrie, who would later become chairman of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, a successor agency to the atomic commission, said the idea of a ban on such systems was attractive. But the technology had been so widely accepted by the industry and regulatory officials, he said, that “reversal of this hallowed policy, particularly at this time, could well be the end of nuclear power.”

In an e-mail on Tuesday, David Lochbaum, director of the Nuclear Safety Program at the Union for Concerned Scientists, said those words seemed ironic now, given the potential global ripples from the Japanese accident.

“Not banning them might be the end of nuclear power,” said Mr. Lochbaum, a nuclear engineer who spent 17 years working in nuclear facilities, including three that used the G.E. design.

Questions about the design escalated in the mid-1980s, when Harold Denton, an official with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, asserted that Mark 1 reactors had a 90 percent probability of bursting should the fuel rods overheat and melt in an accident.

Industry officials disputed that assessment, saying the chance of failure was only about 10 percent. ….

19. Madman in the Marketplace - 15 March 2011

An expert in one field is not the same thing as An Expert

There’s a popular blog post making the rounds this week, written by an MIT scientist, called “Why I am not worried about Japan’s nuclear reactors.” I saw it over the weekend, and decided not to post it here because, while it offered some good insight on how the systems of a nuclear power plant work, it also contained some information of which I was skeptical. Plus, once I actually read the thing closely, I noticed that the MIT scientist was not an MIT nuclear scientist, but, rather, a guy who studies risk management in corporations.

But, if you want the most accurate explanation of, and perspective on, nuclear physics, you’re really better off talking to a nuclear physicist.

And that’s precisely what MIT has now done with that “Why I’m Not Worried” essay. On Monday, the essay was turned over to the Department of Nuclear Science and Engineering, which set a team of field-specific experts to editing it. The essay has now been re-posted at a new website, and it’s been changed. The stuff many people liked about it—a clear step-by-step explanation of what happened during the early hours of the Fukushima nuclear crisis—is still there. But it’s now been vetted for accuracy by people who are far more likely to know what is accurate and what isn’t.

One of the most obvious changes the nuclear scientists made: the title. Turns out, the facts that lead a risk management expert to not worry about the problems at the Fukushima nuclear plants are interpreted rather differently by nuclear energy experts.

brinn - 15 March 2011

“risk management” is now a SCIENCE?!? Since fucking when?!

Statistics are a TOOL of science, they are not science itself!

My freaking head is going to explode!

Madman in the Marketplace - 15 March 2011

I’ve given up trying to explain that to people, but then again we live in a world where “business administration” is treated like it’s a discipline worthy of academic study.

20. Madman in the Marketplace - 15 March 2011

Was Friday’s quake Tokyo’s expected ‘big one’?

For over 30 years Japanese seismologists monitoring the faults around Tokyo have warned that the city was in for a “big one”. Was last week’s devastating earthquake off the coast of Sendai it?

No. The Tokai fault south-west of Tokyo could still rip, but geologists don’t yet know whether Friday’s events will have made this more or less likely.

The warnings about Tokyo initially came from geologists watching the Tokai fault, which runs through Suruga Bay, 130 kilometres south-west of Tokyo. There, the Philippine plate pushes under the Eurasian plate. The region has been a concern since the 1970s, when Japanese seismologists reported that the area had not experienced a large earthquake since 1854 and warned the plates would soon release their energy.

Geological and historical records suggest the average interval between the last four earthquakes in the region was around 120 years. Based on this, the Earthquake Research Committee in Japan has calculated that there is an 87 per cent probability of a magnitude-8 earthquake on the Tokai fault within 30 years from 2009.

Robert Geller at the University of Tokyo says the Sendai earthquake shows that the “Tokai gap” theory is outdated. “Last Friday’s quake shows us that there is an earthquake risk everywhere in Japan,” he says.

Phil Cummins, a seismologist at the Australian National University, agrees. “Too many eggs were put in the Tokai gap basket,” he says.

21. Madman in the Marketplace - 15 March 2011

Maddow off to an excellent start again tonight, this time explaining the danger posed by the spent fuel-rod pools.

22. Madman in the Marketplace - 15 March 2011
23. marisacat - 15 March 2011



…………. 😯

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