What is it? Where is it? What time is it according to the Doomsday clock?
Guys, it's 2 minutes to midnight. Midnight is the symbolic hour of the apocalypse.
Maybe we don't. Probably we do.
Back in 1947, the likelihood of a man-made global catas-trophe was investigated and publicized by a select group of globally recognized leaders, called the Science and Security Bulletin, (SASB). They put out a bulletin telling us it was 7 minutes to midnight.
The SASB guys -- each an impressively qualified, renown top expert with specific focus on nuclear risk, climate change, and the various emerging technologies -- provide the Bulletin with objective perspective on issues. They set the hands of the clock. While meeting regularly with their sub-committees, they author statements, and give advice at public events in broadcasting, and in media outlets.
Over the years, SASB has set the clock backward and forward 22 times. The smallest-ever number was 2 minutes to midnight in 1953 and now in 2018. The largest, safest time was 1991, when it was 17 minutes to midnight.
The members include Nobel Prize Winners, foremost authorities in cyber-security, nuclear policy and environmental science. Right now, alarmed by nuclear tensions in Korea, Iran, Syria using poison gas, and the unpredictability of our president, they are very worried.
The Boston Globe said, "They are overreacting," and reminds readers, "We are not closer than we were during the cold war when America and Soviets had tens of thousands of nuclear weapons on hair-trigger alert. The clock is a public relations device, not a calculation of real world probabilities. It does no one service by exaggerating and over-simplifying the risks we are taking."
Verge.com., a technology news organization, publishes announcements, feature stories, product reviews, and podcasts that examine how technology changes the way we live. Praising the 2 minutes to midnight announcement, Verge said, "It's a gimmick we need -- it gets people talking about urgent issues facing humanity, whether it is rising oceans, killer robots, or nuclear destruction."
Atlantic.com says, "Good luck with that. It underscores just how numb Americans have gotten to the daily deluge of disturbing headlines from melting ice caps to Russians election hacking to ongoing military building in Korea. So when a board of experts tells them that catastrophe is at hand, they read the news and think, "Yep," then, they wonder, "What's for lunch?"
Guys, writing this, thinking about the clock is helping me adjust my heavy-duty, daily-nightly worrying because "2 minutes" gets people all the world worrying, including millions of American voters as well as the Dems and Repubs in Congress, and galvanizes big actions, as well as little actions like my posting these pictures.