Imagine: One World Without Nuclear Weapons

I believe that as soon as people want peace in the world they can have it. The only trouble is they are not aware they can get it. It’s all down to you, mate …All we are saying is give peace a chance…A ll you need is love… Imagine all the people living life in peace. You may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one. I hope someday you’ll join us, and the world will be as one.

– John Lennon

In a country that possesses 11,000 nuclear weapons with many in excess of 20,000,000 tons of TNT [the bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki were 12,000 tons] yet claims to be based on the Judeo-Christian ethics, which includes the commandment that thou shall not kill, is staggering in it’s hypocrisy.

In March 2008, President Bush announced his plan to build a new multi-billion dollar plan to rebuild the nation’s nuclear weapons capabilities through the Department of Energy’s Complex Transformation proposal.1

The centerpiece is a new nuclear weapons plant for the production of plutonium pits, the primary detonators in modern nuclear weapons and the Los Alamos National Laboratory, is the site slated for the new bomb plant.

America signed the NPT and thus is legally and morally obliged to reduce its nuclear weapons arsenal.

Mankind is the only species that has the choice of annihilating itself. “Since the end of the Cold War, the world has spent more than $10 trillion on armaments. The Untied States alone spends approximately $100 million every day to keep its nuclear arsenal at the ready.”2

American money proclaims “In God We Trust” but the facts on the ground are that we have become an empire of blasphemers, for what we trust in are weapons of destruction.

Cesar Chavez said the key to peace is: “Public Action! Public action! Public action!”

In the ’60′s Eldridge Cleaver reminded us that if we are not a part of the solution, we are a part of the problem.

Filmmaker and peace activist, Bud Ryan recently went to Japan to shoot a film about the Hiroshima Peace Museum. He met Emiko Okada, a survivor of the Hiroshima atomic bomb who sent this invitation:

Dear President Bush,

As a hibakusha, a survivor of the Hiroshima Atomic Bomb, I would like to invite you to come and visit the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum while you are in Japan for the G8 Summit (in July).

All of my friends, many of whom are fellow bomb survivors, are waiting to be your guides around the Peace Memorial Museum and Peace Memorial Park. We are the people who can give you the best perspective of the horrors of nuclear weapons as we have lived through it and many of us have suffered numerous physical ailments over the last 62+ years and lost loved ones in the blast.

I myself suffer from aplastic anemia and I lost my 12 year old sister whose last words were “I go now” as she left our house that fateful August morning in 1945.

Our world is now full of worries like global warming, environmental issues, regional conflicts, poverty and a questionable world economy, so none of us need the specter of nuclear weapons to add to those concerns. As a bomb survivor my only wish is that these horrible weapons never be used again. To insure that these awful weapons are never used again ALL of the Nuclear Weapons States must live up to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty which requires that all nuclear stockpiles be dismantled.

I would ask that you, with the tremendous authority that the Office of the President of the United States possesses, take the first step in fulfilling your Treaty obligations by coming to Hiroshima to see for yourself firsthand what these weapons have wrought and to talk with some of the people who have lived through the blast.

I would also ask that you use your international influence to invite the other leaders of the Nuclear Weapon States – Great Britain, France, Russia, China, India, Pakistan, Israel and North Korea – to join you in Hiroshima so they too can see and hear for themselves the destructive nature of these nuclear weapons that do not discriminate between soldier and civilian. In point of fact, nuclear bombs kill mothers and fathers, sisters and brothers, grandmothers and grandfathers, the old and the young.

Thank you for reading my invitation and listening to my plea about helping to remove the 30,000+ nuclear weapons around the world today. I look forward to meeting you and the other leaders in July in Hiroshima.

Sincerely,

Ms. Emiko Okada
11-6 Nakayama Kagamigaoka
Higashi-ku, Hiroshima 732-0022
Japan

“You must give birth to your dreams; they are the future waiting to happen.”
– Rilke

One dream can change everything and change only occurs from the bottom up. It is up to each one of us individually to do something to bring the dream of a nonviolent world into reality. The way to wake up in a new world begins with a spiritual evolution that sees all others as equal human and sacred beings.

“Man must evolve for all human conflict a method which rejects revenge, aggression and retaliation. The foundation of such a method is love.”
– Martin Luther King Jr

Love is a choice and so is nonviolence. Hearts that are stuck in the past turn to stone and fear numbs the imagination.

The way to peace is not brain surgery and only justice will reap it. The day that the gold standard of law is implemented as outlined in International Law and the Declaration of Human Rights and when Governments meet their obligations under these Laws and Agreements, peace will be reality.

Treaties, legislation, resolutions and promises are irrelevant, until we as individuals evolve and are transformed into one human family, and that will lead to an enlightened and humane way of living together and nonviolently solving conflicts so that we will share, nurture and love the one world we all inhabit.

Send a letters or email:

President George W. Bush
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20500

  1. Learn more about Complex Transformation. []
  2. Jonathon Granoff, Tikkun Magazine, 9/11/03. []

Eileen Fleming is the author of Keep Hope Alive and Memoirs of a Nice Irish American Girl's' Life in Occupied Territory and the producer of 30 Minutes With Vanunu. Email her at ecumei@gmail.com. Read other articles by Eileen, or visit Eileen's website.

49 comments on this article so far ...

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  1. D.R. Munro said on May 3rd, 2008 at 6:14am #

    I’ve found nuclear arms races entertaining.

    Both sides keep stock-piling nukes to reach the threat level of the other . . . neither suggests to dismantle all of them to remove the threat entirely.

    I like this piece, for whatever that is worth.

  2. eileen fleming said on May 3rd, 2008 at 6:35am #

    Hi D.R.,

    Appreciate your “like” and what it is worth is that we the people may very well wake up to our government’s TERRORISM that was inflicted on Hiroshima and Nagasaki; and demand USA honot their NPT obligations.

    And what a wonderful world it would be, when all who claim to be Christian actually follow what JC said: forgive, love and do good to your enemies-NOT bomb them!

    Imagine that!

  3. Willy Sierens said on May 3rd, 2008 at 6:46am #

    The leaders of powerful countries are psychopats. Got to be.
    Not sure what good a letter to them will do. Sorry.

  4. hp said on May 3rd, 2008 at 7:02am #

    Most say evolution, I say devolution. With a capitol D.

  5. Lloyd Rowsey said on May 3rd, 2008 at 7:47am #

    Hi, Eileen. Were you in attendance at the May Day signature gathering by Cindy Sheehan and people at Justin Herman Square in San Francisco?

    If so, what was your impression of the event, and needless to add, of CS’s present chances of unseating Nasty P?

  6. hp said on May 3rd, 2008 at 7:48am #

    Reporter: Where do you get your strength?
    John Lennon: From Hare Krishna.
    Yoko Ono: That’s where we get it from, you know.
    We’re not denying it.

  7. joed said on May 3rd, 2008 at 7:56am #

    I said to my soul, be still, and wait without hope
    For hope would be hope for the wrong thing; wait without love
    For love would be love of the wrong thing; there is yet faith
    But the faith and the love and the hope are all in the waiting.
    Wait without thought, for you are not ready for thought:
    So the darkness shall be the light, and the stillness the dancing.

    ~ T.S. Eliot ~

    (The Four Quartets)

  8. bozhidar balkas said on May 3rd, 2008 at 8:06am #

    nuclear war (s) an ergoding event; i., e., having zero chance of not occuring. thank u.
    we need to tell people this.

  9. joed said on May 3rd, 2008 at 8:07am #

    god is just pretend and jc too! there is absolutely no proof there ever was a jesus. all atributes are composite from much earlier pretend heros and villians. forget god and jebus–they are just pretend and pretend means not real. the best you can do is go with the humans.
    hell, there is no evidence for a pontius pilote and the romans invented governmental record keeping and they were good at it.

  10. bozhidar balkas said on May 3rd, 2008 at 8:23am #

    joed
    jesus was just another mad judaistic priest. the sanhedrin rejected his teachings and therefore put him to death. judeans, who wrote ab. what he said or what he didn’t say, unwittingly show him as a war monger who rejected us, the goyim.
    jesus, if quoted accurately/adequately had said, I came to uphold the law and prophets.
    this utterance tells us that jesus had not only approbated hebrew crimes against many semitic peoples but accords jews supremacism by his assertion that jews and hebrews are able to see the future.
    if this isn’t bad enough for us, the untermenschen, he also may have said this, For you will always have poor among you.
    talk ab. being antihuman.
    these are just few of antihuman utterances that jews wrote. but since their writings have been rejected by most judaists, they enslaved some of us. thank u

  11. Lloyd Rowsey said on May 3rd, 2008 at 8:40am #

    “Hi (fill in your name). Were you in Justin Herman Square, May Day afternoon early? Gloria spoke there around 1:30 pm, and was strong. But the event for me was VERY depressing. I’d come over from Benicia to help Cindy Sheehan gather signatures, but she got lost in the general labor-number-1, peace-an-associated-number-2, “protest generally” flavor of the event. As I left, I heard the speaker saying something to the effect that all the ports (on the west coast?) had been shut down for the first time in history. But I was so choked up by nostalgia for protest generally in SF, and the swallowing of the Unseat-Nasty-P campaign by others more nostalgic than even I was, that I couldn’t stop. And I caught the 2pm ferry back to Alameda and drove on “home” to Benicia — almost blind with rage and regret. – Lloyd”

  12. Lloyd Rowsey said on May 3rd, 2008 at 8:42am #

    Hi, Eileen. Were you in attendance at the May Day signature gathering by Cindy Sheehan and people at Justin Herman Square in San Francisco?

    If so, what was your impression of the event, and needless to add, of CS’s present chances of unseating Nasty P?

    - Lloyd

  13. hp said on May 3rd, 2008 at 8:54am #

    joed, it’s interesting that T.S. Eliot drew from the Bhagavad Gita the essence of his “Four Quartets,” among others.
    I simply assume Eliot had much more in common with Lennon than with the malignant Archarya S.

  14. eileen fleming said on May 3rd, 2008 at 2:09pm #

    There is nothing more insane than continuing the same behavior expecting a different outcome-violence only begats more of its own.

    Lennon also said, “Our society is run by insane people for insane objectives. I think we’re being run by maniacs for maniacal ends.”

    In 1946, Lewis Mumford said, “You cannot talk like sane men around a peace table while the atomic bomb itself is ticking beneath it. Do not treat the atomic bomb as a weapon of offense; do not treat it as an instrument of the police. Treat the bomb for what it is: the visible insanity of a civilization that has ceased…to obey the laws of life.”-

    Once upon a time 55 rich white guys penned:

    We hold these truths to be self-evident: That all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights; …whenever any form of government becomes destructive…it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it. -July 4, 1776. The Declaration of Independence

    Human Beings have rights; States and Nations have obligations.

    A healthy democracy is when the government is afraid of the people and what politicians fear is loosing power. Dissent is what keeps a democracy healthy and,

    “The age of warrior kings and of warrior presidents has passed. The nuclear age calls for a different kind of leadership….a leadership of intellect, judgment, tolerance and rationality, a leadership committed to human values, to world peace, and to the improvement of the human condition. The attributes upon which we must draw are the human attributes of compassion and common sense, of intellect and creative imagination, and of empathy and understanding between cultures.” – William Fulbright

    I think we are all at an historical Crossroad:

    On the verge of a greater awakening to see ALL beings are equal and nobody is all good or all evil, for both cut through every heart;

    Or, we won’t WAKE UP and the maniacs currently in charge will eventually drop another nuke and the blowback in air, wind and sea currents will adhere to the law of karma; what ever you do will return to you.

    I know a few letters to the Administration won’t change anything, but if millions were sent in SOLIDARITY we would “have it in our power to begin the world again.”-Tom Paine

    And no, Lloyd, i wasn’t in S.F. for the May Day event, but i do hope and imagine that Nasty P will be out and we the people for justice and peace will take back the House.

    And to the God doubters- have you considered your disbelief may be a sighn of a superior level of conscience?

    Check it out: The Stages of the Soul and How Religiosity/Fundamentalism is holding up Evolution :

    http://www.wearewideawake.org/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=825&Itemid=195

  15. Don Hawkins said on May 3rd, 2008 at 2:10pm #

    What about Bob

    “The Times They Are A-Changin’”

    Come gather ’round people
    Wherever you roam
    And admit that the waters
    Around you have grown
    And accept it that soon
    You’ll be drenched to the bone
    If your time to you
    Is worth savin’
    Then you better start swimmin’
    Or you’ll sink like a stone
    For the times they are a-changin’.

    Come writers and critics
    Who prophesize with your pen
    And keep your eyes wide
    The chance won’t come again
    And don’t speak too soon
    For the wheel’s still in spin
    And there’s no tellin’ who
    That it’s namin’
    For the loser now
    Will be later to win
    For the times they are a-changin’.

    Come senators, congressmen
    Please heed the call
    Don’t stand in the doorway
    Don’t block up the hall
    For he that gets hurt
    Will be he who has stalled
    There’s a battle outside
    And it is ragin’
    It’ll soon shake your windows
    And rattle your walls
    For the times they are a-changin’.

    Come mothers and fathers
    Throughout the land
    And don’t criticize
    What you can’t understand
    Your sons and your daughters
    Are beyond your command
    Your old road is
    Rapidly agin’
    Please get out of the new one
    If you can’t lend your hand
    For the times they are a-changin’.

    The line it is drawn
    The curse it is cast
    The slow one now
    Will later be fast
    As the present now
    Will later be past
    The order is
    Rapidly fadin’
    And the first one now
    Will later be last
    For the times they are a-changin’.

    Think Rev Wright as you read this.
    War,war,war, no, no, no. oil, oil, oil,no,no, no. drill for more, drill for more, drill for more, no, no, no, coal, coal, coal, no, no, no. The times they are a-changin. Come senators, congressmen
    Please heed the call
    Don’t stand in the doorway
    Don’t block up the hall
    very soon we will be outside
    a million strong
    why not come along
    wait don’t tell me buddy
    it’s the money
    No, no, no

  16. John Wilkinson said on May 3rd, 2008 at 4:00pm #

    “In a country that possesses 11,000 nuclear weapons with many in excess of 20,000,000 tons of TNT [the bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki were 12,000 tons] yet claims to be based on the Judeo-Christian ethics, which includes the commandment that thou shall not kill, is staggering in it’s hypocrisy.”

    Eileen, the biggest weapon in the american arsenal EVER was 8-9 MT, single warhead, mounted on Titan II missiles. These missiles have been retired for 21 (TWENTY ONE) years now. There is nothing even remotely approaching that now, neither does it need to be because of the huge advances in the precision of targeting. Trident II’s warhead is half a megaton, and MX’s is 300 kT, these are the biggest warheads now. OK, if you add them all up, since a missile has multiple warheads, it’s 3-4 MT per missile, but the individual warheads fall on separate targets, so it’s really the warhead yield that counts.

    All of this is freely available to anyone who wants to look for such info — it took me 3 minutes. So, nothing even close to the 20 MT claimed in your opening sentence. Not only aren’t there “many” US weapons with yields “in excess of” 20 MT as you claim, there aren’t ANY such weapons, except in your imagination. The biggest one is over FORTY times smaller than your figure which you use with such confidence and know-it-all-ness. And why not? The uneducated, gullible rabble won’t know the diff, right, and it’s good to scare them a bit and establish yourself as an expert, and then sell them whatever is on the resume-building, base-pleasing agenda.

    Should I read the rest of the artice, when it starts with a fabrication or your fiction out of thin air? I know, it’s immaterial to the gist, but it shows your approach to the truth.

    “…is staggering in it’s hypocrisy”.

    apparently, even the grade school grammar doesn’t deserve to be paid homage to when the overriding need is selling and posting articles.

    So, two major errors in the opening sentence.

  17. John Hatch said on May 3rd, 2008 at 4:15pm #

    So here’s America with thousands of nukes, ignoring treaties and agreements, wanting to ‘upgrade’ while threatning to drop a few on Iran for even thinking of acquiring one. Israel has around 200 and is on record as being quite willing to use them, even against the USA in unlikely circumstances. Did someone mention hypocricy?

  18. Lloyd Rowsey said on May 3rd, 2008 at 5:47pm #

    Thank you for WAWA Eileen
    But I swear i despair

    How can all the blind perniciousness and grasping
    NOT lessen if
    NOT befuddle if
    NOT utterly demean and corrupt us?
    We are not coming together in our
    Differentness Lord
    Knows
    Rather
    The opposite

    And WBY no longer applies
    The center DOES hold, it’s just mean ignorant stupid and lost

  19. Don Hawkins said on May 3rd, 2008 at 6:29pm #

    When one’s consciousness is uncontaminated by material lusty desires, it becomes calm and peaceful in all activities, for one is situated in eternal blissful life. Once situated on that platform, one does not return to materialistic activities. Bhaktivedanta

  20. joed said on May 3rd, 2008 at 7:16pm #

    Johe Wilkinson;
    thanks so much for setting the numbers straight. often, many of the articles of the left read like fox news. Critical thought and strong skepticism are truely necessary aren’t they.
    Again Mr. Wilkinson, thank you for the time and effort you took to correct the wrongs here. (even if your numbers are full of crap you did the readers a much needed service).

  21. joed said on May 3rd, 2008 at 7:38pm #

    Mr. hp
    i didn’t write the poem–elliot did. i simply though it apprpriate for this article.
    Ms. Fleming
    if your “god doubter” comment was for me then i gotta’ say that i ain’t no god doubter i just got no evidence nor reason nor need to have any sort of belief about any of that religious stuff. i am, in fact, trying to get rid of all my beliefs about that kind of stuff. it’s a struggle to live in the moment, isn’t it!

  22. eileen fleming said on May 3rd, 2008 at 9:35pm #

    Dear John Wilkerson,

    I will not accuse you of fabrication, but you are very wrong.

    I do NOT sell my articles.

    They are written and freely disseminated with the intent to stimulate THOUGHT and dialogue, and so, I greatly appreciate all comments, but your accusation of my ‘fabrication’ is ludricous and wrong.

    I work without an editor, fact checker, or any assistance at all. My approach to the truth is to report as accuarately as I possible can and I am most open to being corrected.

    I regret I did not footnote that fact that you are mincing, and I also grieve at how cynicism and negativity will miss the POINT:

    America signed the NPT and thus is legally and morally obliged to reduce its nuclear weapons arsenal.

    America claims to be based on Judeo-Christian ethics and there is NO ethical reason ot justification to kill any other.

    But, hope arrived when I read John Hatch who GETS IT:

    “So here’s America with thousands of nukes, ignoring treaties and agreements, wanting to ‘upgrade’ while threatning to drop a few on Iran for even thinking of acquiring one. Israel has around 200 and is on record as being quite willing to use them, even against the USA in unlikely circumstances. Did someone mention hypocricy?”

    Dear Don, THANKS for the Dylan and i offer you what came to me in those first few minutes after i turned on the TV on THAT DAY we call 9/11:

    I see the massacre of the innocent
    City’s on fire
    Phones out of order
    I see the turning of a page
    Curtain rising on a New Age
    See The Groom still waiting at the altar

    The Groom in Christian lingo is another name for the Prince of Peace:
    AKA Jesus, who promised it is the Peacemakers who shall be called the children of God; NOT those that bomb, occupy or torture any other.

    Dear Joed, I do not advocate for any specific religion, but I do respect the essence of them all which is that LOVE, forgiveness and doing something to help the least and the oppressed is the higher call.

    Living in the moment is living life to the full, but living in the past “ain’t got no soul” [Van Morrison] for it hardens the heart and numbs the imagination.

    Imagination is Evidence of The Divine”-William Blake

    “IMAGINE all the people living life in peace.”

  23. hp said on May 3rd, 2008 at 9:53pm #

    ‘Judeo-Christian ethics,’ like the future, sure ain’t what it used to be.

  24. Lloyd Rowsey said on May 4th, 2008 at 5:23am #

    you got some HARD bark on you, hp.

  25. Lloyd Rowsey said on May 4th, 2008 at 5:25am #

    - Richard Boone.

  26. Don Hawkins said on May 4th, 2008 at 6:06am #

    Just now I was watching Fox News and this one guy was eating I think a donut and then said, we are going to now look at food prices a year ago. After seeing that two million to start in front of the Capital and a good place to start Virginia at the end of this month. Building a new world conference.

  27. joed said on May 4th, 2008 at 6:13am #

    Ms. Fleming,
    great come-back! however, define devine and you come-up with “pretend”. Ms. Fleming, it is people that are doing this to one another. and judeo-xtian ethics are what religion hi-jacked from humanity. religion, like voting for the lesser of two evils, is the cause of most of the suffering and great harm that is rampant upon our oasis in the universe.
    at least you know how to talk about living in the moment.
    by the way, Mr. Wilkinson did a great service by bringing in skeptisim of your article. whose numbers are correct anyway?

  28. bozhidar balkas said on May 4th, 2008 at 6:26am #

    john wilkinson.
    would u please tell us who r the “uneducated, “gullible”, “rabble” to u?
    u can do it by naming individuals as being “uneducated” etc., or u can name classes of people.
    on personal level, i say i’m ‘uneducated’ and happily so since the crooks never got to me, thank the devil.
    on group level, hobos, housewives, working class, indigenes, et al come to my mind as candidates?
    and as u can see, i’m not interested in any of ur traits.
    and i thank u if u reciprocate. after all i got me at least thousand faults.

  29. bozhidar balkas said on May 4th, 2008 at 6:49am #

    joed
    please tell us what is the “critical” thought to u.
    question arises, doesn’t the word “thought” have full symbolic value?
    it is like saying , Thank u very much. why “very much” addition?
    “thank u”, to me, is a valid symbol already.
    now, if u had said, We need to teach people how to think, that would be ok.
    and then one proceeds and teaches. but we know that the ruling classes nearly everywhere do not teach kids how to think nor will they be educated so as to respect one another or to question ‘ our’ dear leaders, etc.
    people often tell people what to do but seldom how to do it.
    if some posts read like fox news, please tell us how they’d be read as u like them to be read. give us some examples please, thanx w. full symbolic value.

  30. Don Hawkins said on May 4th, 2008 at 7:04am #

    A tropical cyclone has killed at least 243 people in Burma and damaged thousands of buildings, according to state television.
    Parts of the Irrawaddy region were hit particularly badly, with three out of four buildings reportedly blown down in one district.
    Burma has declared Irrawaddy and four other regions, including the main city Rangoon, to be disaster areas.
    Rangoon has been without power and water, its streets full of debris.
    Winds of about 190km/h (120mph) battered the Irrawaddy, Rangoon, Bago, Karen and Mon regions.
    “I have never seen anything like it,” one retired government worker told Reuters.
    “It reminded me of when Hurricane Katrina hit the United States.” BBC

    Here is the forecast for the States and yes I know for the last two years no big ones hit the US. The oceans are warming and you don’t have to be a weatherman to know which way the wind blows.
    The TSR (Tropical Storm Risk) April forecast update for Atlantic hurricane activity in 2008 continues to
    anticipate an active season to high probability. Based on current and projected climate signals, Atlantic
    basin and US landfalling tropical cyclone activity are forecast to be about 35% above the 1950-2007 norm
    in 2008. There is a high (~63%) likelihood that activity will be in the top one-third of years historically.

  31. John Wilkinson said on May 4th, 2008 at 7:30am #

    The bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki were 20 kT, not 12. (Underestimate was used for greater impact). Judeo-Christian religion is not the epitome of goodness, but of evil. So, 4 errors in the opening sentence.

    The figure of $100M per day for maintenance of nuclear weapons seems to be fictitious. According to the 2007 and 2008 budget figures for Dept. of Energy, $6.5 billion was spent on all weapons activities (that’s approximately $17M per day), but out of that total, only $350M was spent on nuc. weapon maintenance — that’s $1M per day, or 100 times smaller than quoted. A reference is quoted in the text, which is incomplete and thus inaccessible to the reader.

    In any case, let’s assume that the $100M/day figure is correct (which it is not). That’s $36B per year. I’d rather pay that and have it wasted on a weapon which will never be used, than pay roughly $1 trillion (TRILLION!) per year on the conventional weapons, which are used, which are a menace to us all, which cause us to be hated and visit untold misery on others, and which will bankrupt us and our children — this is money that’s coming out of our savings, our future, education, health, etc.

  32. joed said on May 4th, 2008 at 7:40am #

    Bozhidar,
    i don’t know! seems “critical thinking” is a special way of thinking about any subject. my guess is that i have had to overcome much of the propaganda and nonsense that i learned as a young person. this is a life long struggle for me. to think critically means to overcome your cultural view and actually see what is rational and reasonable when the evidence is considered. the evidence must be real and hard and proper evidence. anicdotal evidence for example is not acceptable.
    belief in god or jesus is not allowed by critical thought because there is no real evidence for either. so, as you can see i am not an expert here, but it seems to me that getting rid of all these beliefs is the proper move. the void created by removal of belief should not be filled in with anything. the void is reality. sorry to disapoint you but this is the very best i can do today because i really dont care about being right or being anything at this moment.

  33. John Wilkinson said on May 4th, 2008 at 7:41am #

    In WW2, 50 MILLION people were killed, more than half of them civilians, by conventional weapons. In Hiroshima/Nagasaki, about 100-200 thousand died in each city. One night of firebombing of Tokyo produced the same number, or more, casualties (that is killed immediatelly, not the many others who had their skin burned and suffered without hospital care for days, weeks, months, before dying). The same for Hamburg, Dresden, etc. (since we don’t care what was done to our side). Yes, there were delayed effects also, but the same is true of the others, they were just of a different kind. In Iraq, 1 million have been killed with conventional weapons, and 4 million displaced and their lives totally destroyed.

    During the cold war, there would have been a hot war, for sure, a thousand times over, but for the nuclear weapons. Do you think they would have hesitated, even for a microsecond, while sitting in their armchairs in Washington and Moscow, to send others to die? (Many, many more others than died in WW2). Yes, but it’s different now, when THEY and THEIR families might die. Now, they are a little more cautious, unless dealing with countries without nukes.

  34. John Wilkinson said on May 4th, 2008 at 7:51am #

    In America, every year, about 20,000 people are killed by handguns. Since WW2, close to a MILLION have been killed thus, here, including many children. I submit to you that conventional weapons are a much greater menace. I would ban ALL weapons, but seems to me the ones that are causing most mayhem should be first.

    In any case, as long as there’s knowledge how to build weapons, the weapons will be here. The knowledge to build nuclear weapons is there, too, just like other weapons. Yes, given enough time, more and more countries will have them, and given enough time they will be used, unless something intercedes in our development. But an occasional use pales in consequences to the carnage by other means, already experienced every day.

    Additionally, 40,000 are killed on roadways every year, here. And a million more greviously injured, many in wheelchairs for the rest of their lives. That’s 1 MILLION killed just since Reagan was in office. So, why don’t we agitate for something to be done here, about our transportation system which, in addition causes untold misery, economic hardship, time wasted, etc.?

    Instead, a useless petition that won’t even be read. Those cumulative energies would be better spent feeding just one hungry child for just one day.

  35. joed said on May 4th, 2008 at 8:15am #

    John Wilkinson,
    thanks for the skepticism and rational thinking . i don’t think Ms. Fleming is able to come up with the references necessary to back up her numbers. she is prolific and her articles are odd and bouffant; i am becoming something of a fan. i think she may be sub-rosa either whicken or a Gothic Chick. when i was in the usmc i got in lots of trouble because i refused to take them serious.

  36. hp said on May 4th, 2008 at 8:54am #

    Not to mention one of the most incredibly impossible but true happenings of the 20th century.
    Rwanda.

  37. John Wilkinson said on May 4th, 2008 at 9:43am #

    What I meant by “rabble” — I should have put it in quotes, sorry, as I include myself, is the majority of us who are powerless and the word describes the attitude of the elites — on the LEFT as well as the right, of using us for their means and ends. Facts don’t matter, just scare the living hell out of them, or put up some bullshit issue that they, good christians that they are, should care about.

    As for “uneducated” — well that’s most Americans. See my comments on a recent article on the Florida budget mess, in which I have a couple of examples. You can’t count. Anything with numbers is anathema, treated with disgust and fear. You can’t spell. Don’t know how to use your own language. Basic grammatical errors — just look at the articles and comments. Geography? Do we need to go on? And it’s easy to manipulate people like that, just look at the number of scams out there and how people fall for them. Just look at the number of innocent people in jails, put there by the juries of “believers”.

  38. hp said on May 4th, 2008 at 9:50am #

    ‘A society of cheaters and the cheated.’

  39. bozhidar balkas said on May 4th, 2008 at 12:24pm #

    john wilkinson. thanx for the elucidation. but i hope u understand my evaluation of the unquoted labels.
    it may have been a lot better to have written ‘rabble’, ‘uneducated’ to indicate that these symbols w.o., under double, or single quotes, still have false to fact symbolic value
    the point i’m making is to avoid labeling as much as it is possible; all labeling leaves out imporatant characteristics.
    still at times i may use term like a “housewife”. but i only use it as a shortcut to what generally a house wife does. thus that label is not dysphemistic but is often necessary to use in order not to be too verbose.
    i seldom, if ever, label even bush. i don’t need to do that; i know what he is doing and that’s good enough for me. thank u
    on occ’n i point this out in my posts

  40. bozhidar balkas said on May 4th, 2008 at 12:53pm #

    joed. thanx for the inmput.
    here’s how i think/use langauge.
    any topic of whatever kind (music, geograophy, education, politics, religion) is part of one reality.
    i do not think/speak (speaking thinking is also connected) ab. politics as existing by self, for self; not connected with any other subject.
    politics or religion are mere aspects of one nature.
    i’m afraid that most people in canada and US would call me crazy if i told them this. to them politics is politics. why talk ab. warfare, music, geography, religion?
    then i use a threestep method in evaluating any stuation.
    1. on this level i adduce some or all salient facts that pertain. on this level i also use descriptive language; one describes to one’s best knowledge what is going on.
    only factual and descriptive statements can be evaluated as true or false.
    then draw conclusion. in case of US’ ruling class war against iraqi people, i conclude that the agression was not a mistake but a deed that is punishable. and i leave it to judges to pronounce the sentence.
    on level three, i suggest US begin withdraing their troops a s soon as UN troops become available to replace them.
    i can do no more than that. alas, alack, we or most of us can guess that US will not leave iraq for who knows how long.
    sinc e i believe in devil of my own maybe he’l intercede.

  41. AaronG said on May 4th, 2008 at 8:58pm #

    “I would also ask that you use your international influence to invite the other leaders of the Nuclear Weapon States – Great Britain, France, Russia, China, India, Pakistan, Israel and North Korea”

    It’s a bit depressing to realise that most of the countries mentioned in Emiko’s letter, along with the US, represent the UN “Security” Council. You can’t run to crooked cops to solve your problems.

    Thanks for the great article Eileen. I must politely disagree with your statement “One dream can change everything and change only occurs from the bottom up”. Change can definitely come from bottom-up (albeit slow and frustrating – just ask Hugo Chavez what he’s going through at the moment), but it’s most effective when it comes from top-down……………..simply remove the gangsters and their whole rulership structure and watch the people thrive. I think the elites love to encourage bottom-up methods of change, since it wrongly puts responsibility onto the people for the planet’s woes, and I think that they know that it doesn’t get results. What they’re absolutely shit-scared of is top-down change. We all want to protect our jobs. I can’t see them voluntarily handing in their badges anytime soon. We hope gullibly that we can make a difference by turning off our light globes or riding to work (as I do). Meanwhile the rulers haven’t altered their life$tyle one bit.

  42. eileen fleming said on May 5th, 2008 at 5:25am #

    Dear Joed,

    You wrote: “i think she may be sub-rosa either whicken or a Gothic Chick.”

    None of the above. What i am is a Christian of The Beatitudes- meaning I follow the best I can what JC taught and NOT the dogma and doctrines of any Institution.

    Dear Aaron,

    Good points, but I must stand by the one dream can change everything-remember Martin Luther King, Jr.?

    “Never doubt that a few, thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world: Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” -Margaret Mead

  43. bozhidar balkas said on May 5th, 2008 at 6:43am #

    correction by bozhidar.
    i said an “ergoding” event instead of nuclear war (s) being ergodic,i.,e., having zero chance of not occuring, thanx

  44. bozhidar balkas said on May 5th, 2008 at 4:17pm #

    too many people say to us what to do but few if any tell us how to do it. bible is full of suggestions/commands ab. what to do but does not offer single method ab. how to obtain inner peace or how to look after weaker members in any society.
    to improve lives of citizens in a country like canada or US, i offer u a methodology:
    1. change education system. it cannot be done uless we rest the control of the education from religion, tv, movies, and the ruling class. let’s stop watching movies and TV. let’s start a party and demand changes be made or make them ourselves once we govern.
    2. we must convince ourselves that education is controled by the ruling class and not by working people. the goal of the ruling class being our ‘voluntary’ intellectual serfdom.
    3. once and for all time let’s stop grading children . Judging/grading/rating children is ab. the worst thing we can do.
    can u imagine how a child feels finishing last in his/her class? and listening to a teacher laud another child?
    rating cows may be ok. but rating people is based on a millennial misteaching: people are lazy, dumb, unmotivated, unwashed, etc. thank u.

  45. eileen fleming said on May 5th, 2008 at 4:29pm #

    Dear bozhidar balkas

    Yes, I agree many people-and most especially the PAID media are as you wrote:
    “lazy… unmotivated”

    But might you IMAGINE that at this moment in time-with a free and Mineutral net-we the people of the one world we all inhabit truly do have it in “our power to begin the world again”?

    Might you IMAGINE that by regaining COMMON SENSE is the first step?

    Might you IMAGINE that we the people who have been given much, much more is required of US?

    “Soon after I had published the pamphlet “Common Sense” [on Feb. 14, 1776] in America, I saw the exceeding probability that a revolution in the system of government would be followed by a revolution in the system of religion… The world is my country, all mankind are my brethren, and to do good is my religion.”-Tom Paine

    IMAGINE when America actually does that!

  46. Giorgio said on May 5th, 2008 at 6:48pm #

    After reading the article, the beautiful poetry, the remarks about Judeo-Christian values, the right/wrong statistics on the number of nukes or WMDs, and scanning the banter between the commentators, I got the sudden feeling that this Judeo-Christian SINGLE-PERSON God must be an inveterate drunkard. Between his sloshing, thundering, and showering Humanity with fire and brimstone for the last few millenia, I ask myself, where the hell can Humanity run for cover to???
    A child who is molested and beaten up regularly by a drunken father can at least, once reaching adulthood, pack his bags and run away from him and never see him again. Hence he is still blessed with the HOPE of eventual Freedom!
    How do I now hanker for that Great Family of Roman and Greek GODS!!!
    In that Golden Era, if a god misbehaved himself, the other gods would gang up on him and throw him into a dungeon. And so, voilà!, problem solved! But not so with this widely acclaimed (unique?) Judeo-Christian god!

  47. eileen fleming said on May 6th, 2008 at 5:12am #

    hey Giorgio-i myself have said many times many the god that many ‘Christians’ believe in, is a god that should be fired.

    “There are two Christianities in our midst. One worships a punitive father and seeks obedience at all costs. It is patriarchal, demonizes woman, the earth, science, gays, lesbians, and deep thought. It builds on fear and it supports empire-builders. Its theology includes a punitive father in the sky and teaches original sin.

    “The other Christianity recognizes the original blessing that all beings derive from. We recognize awe, not sin, not guilt, as the starting point of true religion. We recognize a divinity who is source of all things and is as much mother as father, as much female as male. We honor creation and diversity. When God created everything, He pronounced it all good. We are here to make love to life. Yes, we are here to make love to life.”

    -Excerpted from “KEEP HOPE ALIVE”, Chapter 12: The Revolution Starts Now”

  48. bozhidar balkas said on May 6th, 2008 at 5:53am #

    baal, yahweh, god, and allah are all semitic deities. baal is gone; slain by ‘ yahweh’; he’s an angry/hateful/greedy ‘god’.
    not much less angry are ‘god’ and ‘allah’.
    lagging a bit behind in anger at or disdain/hate/fear of us are world’s plutocrats.
    and then, to make matters even worse, we have zionism. and everytime i think of zionism i get nostalgic for genghis, fascism, communism and soon even nazism.
    this is a not a good joke. but it’s all i can come up with at this time. i’m sick of crying. so i joke.
    can i give u some good news before i alight?
    my wife used to be TEN; now that she’s 77, she’s still a NINE. isn’t that good news?
    but i got even better news for u: now that she’s not talking to her daughters, she’s 9.2.

  49. bozhidar balkas said on May 6th, 2008 at 4:48pm #

    john wilkinson,
    just a quick comment ab. deaths in US. i self have written ab that matter to media; however,none of my letters dealing with that and other
    matters have been published for obvious reasons.
    the question is :can we have progress w.o. regress?
    i think we can tho not ideally. the ruling class in canada discounts in toto the regress. sad,isn’t it?