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sometimes i think about chernobyl

Sometimes I think about Chernobyl, about how easily it could have been prevented.

I think about the sheer, blind stupidity of it all and wonder why a person would knowingly do something that dangerous.

I think the answer is power, the prime corrupting influence.

There was plenty of power at Chernobyl. Power was its foundation, its function, its product, its raison d’etre.

Possession of power is like drinking seawater: the more you have the more thirsty you get until the whole self is poisoned.

Ethics are an obstacle.

More power.

Safety is a nuisance.

More power.

Practicality is a burden for subordinates.

More power.

Concern for others is cast aside.

More power.

Consequences are peripheral or a mirage.

More power. More power. More power. More.

More power.

Laws natural and manmade are forgotten and ignored.

More power.

But natural laws cannot be sidestepped. Power comes from energy. Energy hast to go somewhere, and…

Now we know.

But we haven’t learned.

We’ve watched.

But haven’t seen.


But not listened for understanding.


But not tasted.

We have sensed.

But we haven’t felt.

And while we watch, they go on drinking.

Ever thirsty for more, more, more, more, more power!

They don’t know. The poor fools they don’t know!

They don’t know it’s killing them, just as the small ones they do not see.

What they imagine to be an elixir of life is in truth the slow draught of death.

What to them tastes of money and takes the shape of a gun to us smells of blood and appears as the specter of the ones we did not save.

They imagine themselves swelling ever fatter and yet they are shrinking, slowly dried and cured in the brine of their own brewing.

Is there nothing that can stay their madness? No fact that can shake them from this stupor?

They see what we see, and yet they drink.

They hear what we hear and the wretched bacchanale goes on.

Their senses are privy to the same information, and yet they remain unaffected.

Is there no end?

There is but one cure: that saline siccative must be diluted before they poison our supply as well.

It must be scattered and dispersed and spread so thin it cannot be tasted by even the canniest of tongues, never again to be so concentrated in such a deadly ratio.

The deathly draught of power must be wrenched from their iron grasp and spilled beyond any recovery.

Their proverbial casks and butts must be dashed to pieces and their contents wasted by the wind!

Well did the old master say that a nation drowning in guns and thirsting for cures has lost its way.

What shall we do, friends? Will we be better profited by rifles and missiles, or by food and clothes for the hungry and cold, beds for the weary, and schools for those who cannot help but dream?

Let us choose wisely while backs to clothe and mouths to feed are still with us, for there but for the grace of God go we all.

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