don’t politicize nuclear power

I just saw parts of this release of the senate republican conference roundtable (1hr, 30m) recently, and was happy to hear reasonable talk here about using nuclear power to get us off coal ASAP. Can’t say I disagree. I am, however,  a little worried about nuclear power becoming a partisn issue (haha). This proposal is in line with McCain’s campaign promises of new nukes. I know plenty of people back in Ann Arbor who passionately hate Republicans and will blindly go on hating nuclear power for no reason other than to smite them.  Of course, those people are borderline insane. I think most people are actually reasonable: Rod Adams didn’t pull all support from nuclear power, but then again he’s the most pro-nuclear person on Earth. What about the people who have yet to decide how they feel about nukes?

You know what killed the early hippie subculture? It was the summer of love in 1967 when every 17 year old suburbanite became a hippie. And what killed the original punk movement? Hot Topic. Clearly, to undermine a group’s claim to identity, mainstream society has to claim its unique characteristics for itself (tie-dye shirts of the hippies, dog collars of the punks, and nuclear power of the Republicans). So, in order to keep nuclear power from being politicized, I’d like to see some non-Republicans voice their support in a way that identifies them as a non-Republican. For instance:

I love universal health care AND nuclear power!

or perhaps:

Boy, smoking bans are a great idea. So is the expansion of nuclear power!


Ayn Rand sucks. Say, don’t you think making nuclear power plants is a good idea? I heard that if we recycle all the nuclear waste we have sitting around the USA, we could power the whole country for 90 years.

And you pro-nuke Republicans, recognize that it isn’t beneficial to the planet to try to tie a power source to a political ideal. So, when you rally for nukes, try not to demonize Democrats or anything. Sure it may be difficult not to sometimes, but rise above temptation and promote it as something too elegant to be automatically tied to abortion rights, gun control, and small government.

By the way, since nuclear power utilities are counting on large loan guarantees, doesn’t it seem like the nukes are more in line with Democrat’s “spend more tax dollars for the betterment of society” idea? Huh. Backwards.

If Al Gore endorsed nuclear power today, as a founder of Greenpeace has, we’d be this much closer to solving our energy problems.

Dear Al Gore: Please endorse nuclear power. Thanks  -Nick

2 thoughts on “don’t politicize nuclear power”

  1. As someone who works in the nuke industry, I suspect another reason for the tilt is that our employee base, especially as you move up the management chain, is very heavily tilted Republican and conservative. Not a lot of nuke workers belonging to or speaking up at more liberal groups. For so long there has been such a sense of frustration that the public perception of nuclear is so far off the reality that most nuclear folks have given up trying to correct mistakes. We pay a lobbying group to do it. I wrote a novel, “Rad Decision”, trying to provide a realistic look at the real world of nuclear, which I’ve put on line free at . Plenty of reviews at the home page, and environmental icon Stewart Brand, founder of The Whole Earth Catalog, had some nice things to say about it. But still waiting for that spot on Oprah.

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