Friday, September 26, 2014

Nuclear Trolls and the Banality of Evil

A troll is someone who joins an event or forum in order to sabotage proceedings.

Yesterday a new troll showed at Enenews. I actually think the new troll is an old troll because of the pattern of his disruptions (definitely a masculine ego operative here)

The trolls at Enenews typically emphasize their expertise in nuclear engineering in order to disparage other commentators and rebut headline news about the Fukushima disaster.

For example, yesterday Enenews ran the headline:

Nuclear Professor: Blast at Fukushima Reactor 3 was like “exploding vortex ring” — Ejection of nuclear fuel implies there was a “criticality excursion” and steam explosion — Black smoke may have been burning MOX and uranium (PHOTOS) (here)

The troll “Factchecker” arrived at this forum yesterday, clearly intent on combating the fact that nuclear reactors can lose containment explosively.

We haven’t had a troll in a while so his arrival signifies the perceived importance of this forum’s content. Trolls usually arrive when Enenews runs headlines with strong evidence indicating that there were nuclear explosions and loss of containment at Fukushima Daiichi. 

The trolls rarely discuss the biological effects of radiation, but rather focus on displaying their knowledge of nuclear engineering, while denigrating other participants.

“Factchecker,” perhaps formerly known as "FX," dismissed my comments about the biological effects of radiation by stating that I lack a degree in nuclear engineering so can offer no insight into the Fukushima disaster.

This personal attack was a slight of hand designed to re-focus the discussion so that technical expertise frames truth.

So, I responded to Factchecker’s attack  by explaining that physicists with PhDs typically lack expertise in the biological effects of radiation, a field of study I’ve pursued over the last 3 ½ years, building upon my previous research on genetics and mutagens in the area of autism and environmental risk framing.

But Factchecker is unable to differentiate between engineering knowledge and biological knowledge because to do so would shift the focus of the discussion away from what happened – which he wants to arbitrate– to the biological consequences, which he doesn’t want addressed. He figures he can end the conversation by proving that the reactors didn't blow.

Factchecker wants to CAST DOUBT on form readers’ certainty that the reactors blew at Fukushima Daiichi even when the body of empirical evidence for radiation contamination clearly documents loss of containment.

Factchecker twists truth in order to deny the catastrophe that occurred in March 2011 so as to protect the nuclear industry, its shareholders, and captured regulators. 

I doubt Factchecker is a fanatical believer of his twisted propaganda. Too much careful framing is occurring with his responses at this time (until he gets tired and starts losing control and becomes increasingly irrational).

Hanna Arendt described the banality of evil at the heart of Nazism. Factchecker illustrates this banality of evil, as does the entire nuclear village.

I will take up this banality of evil in a future post, demonstrating how relevant it is for understanding trolls such as Factchecker and the pro-nuclear policies of governments across the world.


For example, in response to Factchecker disparaging someone for lacking a PhD I wrote:

majiaSeptember 25, 2014 at 11:12 pm
I have a phd and teach at a research university.

I've checked the facts and according to French and US government agencies north east Honshu and the western US/Canada were hit with fallout that exceeded the IAEA's definition of contamination.

I've checked the facts and food, milk, and water in Japan and the US were contaminated with cesium and iodine and, no doubt, other radionuclides that aren't being tested or the results are not being disclosed.

I've checked the facts and radionuclides bioaccumulate and bio-magnify. One notable fact is that strontium can bio-accumulate in the brain's calcium depositories.
I've checked the facts and thyroid cancer rates in north east Honshu are rising at an unprecedented rate, surpassing even the rate of increase found in Chernobyl 3 years after that disaster.

I've checked the facts and any NPP will likely suffer meltdowns and fires in the event of a sustained power outage.

I've checked the facts and nuclear burns lots of carbon if you include the entire fuel to decommissioning cycle, which nuke advocates ignore.

I've checked the facts. Have you Fact Checker?
Some new disclose must be imminent to have brought new attention to us here….

Ive checked you out maija.
You do have a phd, but not in engineering.
You do teach at a research university, where I also have colleagues that teach there. They teach nuclear engineering and are well published. I doubt you can hang with them on nuclear technical issues.
Your research is more in the social effects of nuclear technology, not the technology itself.
Everything burns carbon. You cant make solar panels without mining rare earth elements, which takes carbon.

I don't have to have a degree in nuclear engineering to study the biological and social effects of ionizing radiation, released continuously by NPP.

If you looked me up, you will see that I'm quite well published in the area of autism, which prepared me ideally for addressing the genetic mutations and epigenetic damage caused by exposure to ionizing radiation.

I do believe my knowledge in this area exceeds your friends', those with degrees in nuclear engineering.

No, I dont think your technical nuclear knowledge is more than a tenured nuclear engineering professor, or mine.
Your publications are not scientific, but social studies.


  1. Yes, you're right, Maija. I, too, saw Factfinder's post on Enenews and figured right away that he's two tacos short of a combo. Anyone who begins a new post declaring how smart, educated, superior and what a fine fellow he is definitely has some issues.

  2. The experts generally remain silent in order to retain their jobs. We can not have university professors speaking their minds and disrupting gov and commerce. Think of what chaos will result if they spoke out on vaccines, prescription medicine, glyphosate, artificial sweetners . . . etc. No, absolutely we must control the experts. That is why so many articles get written by the emeritus professors. The old ones. So in effect there are no experts to speak out. But then what constitutes an expert? Obviously most people greatly over estimate experts. Both as to knowledge/intelligence and integrity. How many grants does it take to wear down an honest person into a obsequious experimenter who will manufacture results to suit the money? In any case accusing you of not having the education is a form of ad hominem. We need a Thomas Mann now to write the autobiography of a troll which is a form of con artist.