Project 313 – Post No. 147

Just one more after this and I’ll have a whole week’s worth of prepared Project 313 posts. I can then concentrate on eating and snacking and munching for the rest of the week. 

For today’s post, I’ll ponder about which is worse . . . nuclear weapons or a superflu virus?

Well, obviously, if we can keep from blowing each other up (doubtful, the way we’re going) then nuclear weapons are just a form of leverage. But, if they are used — and used in earnest — we then face the possibility of a man-made extinction event. 

This isn’t just idle speculation since it need not be the big boys who get into a scrape. India and Pakistan have a combined nuclear arsenal of over 200 nukes. That’s enough to significantly alter climate and destroy the Ozone layer. The repercussions worldwide would be significant. 

It’s interesting that studies concentrated specifically on Pakistan and India (HERE). Interesting because they don’t have the largest bombs. It’s somewhat realistic because those two countries are perennially on the brink of war both over contested regions and because of religious differences. 

Still, it’s not like the big boys (US, China, and Russia) fall into the category of reasonable agents with level heads at their helm. All three countries are actively — and sometimes aggressively — testing each other’s powers. China in the South China Sea and Russia and the US over the North Atlantic and the Arctic as the loss of Arctic Sea Ice opens up new areas for trade and oil exploration. 

What about a superflu virus or some new strain of bacteria? Well, we have some examples of various events wiping out significant portions of the population. The Black Death and the Spanish Flu both significantly impacted the population of the world. (Side note: I highly recommend reading THIS.)

The plague wiped out an estimated 40%-60% of Europeans. The Flu Epidemic affected 500 million people and had a mortality rate of between 10%-20%. 

There are still some things we don’t know about the plague (there are different hypotheses) and the history of the Flu Epidemic is also a bit murky. 

But, we do know this: the population of the world is both a lot more mobile and concentrated than it was back then. This offers for a higher risk of both infection and transmission of any disease. Especially if — and this isn’t science fiction — if countries have the technology to weaponize bacteria and viruses. 

We have one additional problem because of our globalization . . . we often get goods from other places as we no longer have the capacity or sometimes even knowledge to produce stuff locally. 

Imagine doctors being the first affected (not an unreasonable assumption) . . . how much medical knowledge do you possess? 

Plus, regardless of the reason — a virus or nuclear war — a significant loss of lives would without doubt trigger humanity’s worst instincts. That’s not speculation; that a fact, pure and simple.

Certainly, the religious would see it as punishment from god and demand sacrifice to appease their blood-thirsty god. Political entities would blame each other and factions would resort to violence both as a means to gain power and to punish those they blame. 

It’s some fun stuff to speculate. If it bothers you, don’t read about supervolcanoes or impact events or the upcoming AI revolution or solar flares or gamma-ray bursts or the toilet backing up. Wait; that last one isn’t that bad . . . unless all the plumbers have been wiped out.

And now, the photo:

Project 313 147

Looking at these lava walls photos processed to look like drawings gives me ideas as to how I could draw something like this. I study the use of shadows and textures and wonder if I could replicate the picture with my doodling. We’ll see. 

It’s difficult to predict what people will actually care about. 

. . . which is a great source of humor.

Prediction requires being aware of multiple things . . . which we could be, given this set-up . . . The Eyes in the Corners and The Eyes in The Middle and The Great Big Eye in The Center.

The Eyes in the Corners and The Eyes in The Middle and The Great Big Eye in The Center

And . . . that’s it

Some of these posts will likely be longer as the mood hits me, but most will be thus; short, uninteresting, bland, and relentless.

You can read about Project 313 HERE.

That’s it. This post has ended . . . except for the stuff below.


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