back to article Doomsday Clock ticks one minute closer to annihilation

The boffins who run the Doomsday Clock – an estimate of how close humanity is to annihilation by climate change or nuclear war - have just moved the minute hand one minute closer to midnight. Invented by the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists (BAS) in 1947, the clock represents nuclear danger with midnight representing the end of …

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  1. CaptainHook
    WTF?

    So the current situation is exactly the same as last week, i.e. no treaty, but this week that lack of treaty is more dangerous?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      It's an acknowledgement of the situation

      1. mericet
        Mushroom it acknowledges that by now there *should* have been some accord over the situation, and it has failed to materialise on time. A failed attempt to ratify the treaty shows less stability than 'not having made an attempt yet'....
  2. Michael H.F. Wilkinson Silver badge
    Mushroom

    As private Fraser used to say:

    We're doomed! Doomed!! DOOMED!!

  3. Mme.Mynkoff

    Fill this [ news space ]

    Fukishima had a catastrophic meltdown that didn't kill anyone, and the climate shows no significant warming since 1998.

    But of course they have to put out their annual scaremongering press release.

    Thankyou, The Bulletin of Attention-seeking Bedwetters.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      @Mme.Mynkoff

      You do realise that one of the reasons that climate change deniers hate being called deniers is that they claim that noone actually says that the climate is staying the same. As it happens: Go forward or back a year and you'll see a significant warming trend. 1998 was the last El Ninio, ie: it was hotter. This year, IIRC, is a La Nina ie: Cooler - there is a big issue if a years expected to be cooler are only as cool as the last year expected to be hotter.
      1. CmdrX3
        Alert Most are not "deniers" they are sceptics, there is a big difference. I have also heard the climate research fundraisers equate "climate change deniers" to Nazis. When I see such a propaganda machine in effect, it makes me doubt the message they have to spread. As the saying goes... the bigger the lie the more people will believe it.
        1. Sorry that handle is already taken. Silver badge
          WTF?

          Re: CmdrX3

          "I have also heard the climate research fundraisers equate "climate change deniers" to Nazis."

          I have heard there are unicorns on the moon.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            @cmdrx3

            That's twice in recent days I've heard this from a denier/sceptic, I have never heard it from any other source.

            I wonder if this is a new tactic in the increasingly desperate attempts to win the argument?

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Go forward or back a year

        At 88 miles an hour??
      3. Stan P
        Facepalm

        U sir are insane.

    2. markfiend
      Facepalm "no statistically significant warming" != "no significant warming" Again with the warming denailism by commentards on elreg?
      1. Zippy the Pinhead
        Stop

        markfiend

        Actually the unedited numbers show we have been in a period of global temperature decline for the last 16 years.
        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          @zippy

          No they don't.

          And...

          If you're going to make comments like that you really need to cite sources, so they can then be torn apart.

      2. Alan W. Rateliff, II
        Paris Hilton

        Cyclic deniers

        Again with the Global Climate Cyclic Denialism commentards on elreg? Paris, like the Sahara Desert, she was once lush, too. Wait, isn't she still a lush?
    3. Ammaross Danan
      Coat

      Lingo

      "Fukishima had a catastrophic meltdown that didn't kill anyone" Doesn't it have to be a catastrophy to be "catastrophic"? Last I checked, Fukishima was a partial meltdown, but no where near a "catastrophy" such as Chernobyl.... As for climate change, the polarization is whether humans are causing it or not. Perhaps the argument should be "no significant [human-caused] warming." Just because our models are flawed (they don't take into account all environmental factors, so you can't say they are not), doesn't mean they're wrong; just inaccurate. It's the fact that our current temperatures are not where they were projected to be that should be more conclusive.
  4. Khaptain Silver badge
    FAIL

    Correct me if I am wrong

    Is there some major reason, other than financial gain, for which we cannot simply begin to implement a reduction in the number of people on the planet. I don't mean some mass destruction of populations, I mean simply a one child per household kind of policy.

    There was a time where it was necassary to have 7 children in order to have some hope of surviving, today that issue no longer holds.

    Isn't it also about time that the supposed "religous leaders" stood up and made a commitment to allowing for contraception. I can't really believe that the great Sky Fairy intended for us to destroy the earth through over-population.

    Why are the governments doing nothing and don't give me that "but who will pay for the future generations" crap.

    Think how many problems would be resolved simply by reducing the population. There would be more farmland/food to go around, the available natural energies would last longer, we would automatically reduce pollution and waste, the forests would begin to grow/increase.

    I really hate these false claims that Nuclear is bad, Global Warming is destroying the earth, there are not enough resources etc These problems can be resolved by simply stopping the over population of the earth.

    The capatalistic diatribe to which have become accustomed will not resolve anything other than filling the pockets of those that presume they will be dead and gone or protected before the real problems actually begin.

    I wonder how far away from WW3 we really are.

    ( I hate Wednesdays)

    1. The BigYin

      It's happening...

      ...in the first-world. The answer is education, i.e. get the kids in the third world into school. After a generation or so, things will sort themselves out.

      However with the kids in school, there will be no one in the factories making your T-shirts for £5 or new training shoes (which you *will* moan about), no money coming into child's household (because the child is not working) and the situation will worsen.

      The answer to that is to pair a fair price and fine the hell out of companies using child labour and jail the execs who have worker's activists executed (we all know which companies these are).

      All that hits the bottom line and share prices, can't have that! So it's much easier for us to profit from selling arms to dictators, having wars, securing oil and ensuring the status quo.

      1. Ken Hagan Gold badge

        Re: The answer is education

        Specifically, I think the evidence points to *women's* education being much the most important factor. As far as I recall, prior to German unification, the population of the Federal Republic was actually falling.
      2. Anonymous Coward 101

        Oh yeah...

        "The answer to that is to pair a fair price and fine the hell out of companies using child labour and jail the execs who have worker's activists executed (we all know which companies these are)." I am pretty sure it is already illegal to execute worker activists right now - it's called murder. Why would execs start obeying a new law when they are already not obeying laws against murder?
    2. Anonymous Coward 101

      "Is there some major reason, other than financial gain, for which we cannot simply begin to implement a reduction in the number of people on the planet. I don't mean some mass destruction of populations, I mean simply a one child per household kind of policy."

      1. Who is 'we' that would impose such a policy?

      2. How would this policy be enforced?

      1. ravenviz
        Coat 1. Me. 2. Only I am allowed to father children.
        1. Ben Tasker Silver badge

          @ravenviz

          You might need to tighten the rules a bit there, I'd specify you can choose who with in case this girl comes along demanding babies; http://i.telegraph.co.uk/multimedia/archive/01752/Anne-Woods_1752141c.jpg
          1. ravenviz
            Paris Hilton

            @Ben

            Creative use of the word 'girl' there!
      2. Jim Coleman
        Angel It is the responsibility of every person on the planet to reduce their progenic output, we cannot shift that responsibility onto our toothless governments. It rests with each and every one of us. I've made a start by not having any children at all. What're you going to do?
        1. Ben Liddicott
          Childcatcher

          Excellent. Your children won't be around to complain

          ...about my children cluttering up the place! And mine won't have to listen to yours whining about the population "problem". Seriously, we are better fed and housed than ever before in the history of the world, all due to clever technology created by the excess population, who wouldn't be born if the misanthropic, malthusian malcontents had their way. What's the problem?
          1. Poor Coco

            The problem...

            ...is that all the abundance you cite is due to the overexploitation of non-renewable resources; and when they are exhausted we are all royally screwed.
      3. Nuke

        @ AC 101

        AC 101 wrote :-

        >> 1. Who is 'we' that would impose such a policy?

        >> 2. How would this policy be enforced?

        The GP did make the point about religious leaders who currently speak against contraception. So those religious leaders are currently imposing the opposite policy in many parts of the world, and enforcing it (eg by excommunication, threats of hell fire etc).

        Thus they show that it can be done.

    3. Evil Auditor Silver badge

      @Khaptain

      I see your point and indeed agree largely. My reason against a one child policy is personal freedom. And there are undesirable side effects (cp. China and women/men ratio). An obvious and likewise undesirable solution would be WW3.

      As alternative means for population decrease we should discuss other solutions. How about a child tax -in contrast to child allowance- to cover for all the external costs a human being is likely to cause in its life time? To be effective, such a tax has to be imposed on the parents close to birth (e.g. during the first ten years).

      Other ideas are welcome!

    4. Richard Wharram

      Some reason?

      Yes.

      Freedom.

      1. Jim Coleman
        Mushroom @Evil Auditor: You're not gonna have much "personal freedom" when arma-freaking-geddon arrives, now are you? "Personal Freedom" is trumped by "Need to Survive".
      2. John H Woods Silver badge

        A child tax?!

        Children are already expensive. I pay for my own children. They will be paying for your pension. And you want to tax me for having them?
      3. Alan W. Rateliff, II
        Paris Hilton

        Every person is an asset, not a liability

        "How about a child tax -in contrast to child allowance- to cover for all the external costs a human being is likely to cause in its life time?" If you buy into the idea that every person on the planet consumes and does not produce. This logic is deeply flawed in a productive society. You apparently buy into the central planning ideas in which the amount of supportive resources are limited. Therefore, only the central planners can properly distribute those resources and only to a limited number of dependents. But consider a different line of thought. A line of thought in which during the formative years of dependency upon its parents, the child learns to become productive. Once the child reaches maturity it would, as an adult, produce and therefore put into the system. (Of course, once dependents became productive, then the power and authority of the central planners evaporates.) A family of seven children should mean seven more people building houses or railways, providing medical services, etc. But to the central planner, seven more people equates to seven more mouths to feed and consumption of even more limited resources. Depending upon which boffin you wish to follow for the day, the Earth cannot sustain its population given ground for crops and livestock or it can produce much more. Both sides agree that, indeed, the Earth has limited natural resources (the limits of which are then argued upon,) but only one side agrees that the past few decades of recycling and reusing has made any strides while the other side insists that 80% or more post-consumer content in just about everything we consume is not enough and it is time to start culling the human herd. And yet, somehow, the human population continues to increase. Sustainably. Even with starvation and disease deaths in third-world populations, somehow. Even amidst farmers being paid not to grow certain crops on their otherwise useful, fertile, and productive lands. Paris, fertile... somehow.
    5. Ben Liddicott
      Childcatcher

      If you think there are too many people on the planet do us all a favour

      "Is there some major reason, other than financial gain, for which we cannot simply begin to implement a reduction in the number of people on the planet." There is no "we". There are normal healthy people who love their children and couldn't imagine doing without them and there are nasty misanthropes like you and the government of China. As it is there is more food production per-capita and less hunger than ever before in the history of the world. Why do you think there are too many people? By what measure? Even the so-called "one child" policies of China don't apply to everyone. They don't apply to colonists going to Thailand or Han people colonising the outer reaches of China where the people are not Han but Uyghur, Turkic, Mongolian etc. They don't apply to rich male party leaders (of course) because they have lots of girlfriends who can all have one child each even if they can't swing an exception. There are all sorts of exceptions. If you think there are too many people on the planet do us all a favour and lead by example.
      1. itzman
        Facepalm

        I do love a dyed in the wool comitted Cornucopian..

        ...believer...
      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        It's a nerd thing

        There's something about techies that makes a few of them love nasty authoritarian policies such as population control. It's a revenge fantasy. The jocks may have kicked sand in their faces at school - but now they'll show 'em. What is it?

        Sexual frustration?

        Envy?

        Life has passed 'em by?

        Any guesses?

        Population loonies are the cockroaches of the internets, oblivious to reason.

    6. Scott Broukell
      Megaphone

      Population Problem - couldn't agree more

      More to the point - if we do nothing about it then nature will take its course and it won't be very nice! Famine, disease, drought and warfare etc. The likely winners(?!) are the the developed nations with money and resource - might this be the course we are already set on for human kind ? Female children especially desperately need the chance of education - so that they can make choices about bearing children / contraception for themselves. Why does a child HAVE to be brainwashed into whatever religion it's parents observe - amounts to abuse in my mind. Children are the future ALWAYS - their prosperity and development is in our hands. Our immediate responsibility must always be towards them and not our own 'must have' needs of the moment. Do we want monetary profit / gain NOW, or a sustainable (and probably yes, less exciting) LONG TERM future for human kind ? In all honesty I doubt we are grown up enough right now to work this out holistically as one species pulling together. Maybe our species just needs to hit the wall a few times before we learn from past mistakes - we have been through some tough cycles in the past (glaciation, prehistoric migrations etc)
      1. Ben Liddicott
        Childcatcher

        Children are the future! Lets have fewer of them!

        Seriously, that makes no sense.
      2. Evil Auditor Silver badge

        @Scott Broukell

        Why should I care about the long term future for mankind? Why should I forego whatever in favour of someone's children?
        1. Ben Tasker Silver badge

          @Evil Auditor

          Tell you what, let's (as a generation) lead by example. Let's all refuse to pay taxes paying for schools (as you're foregoing money for the benefit of someone elses children). Of course, that might not seem quite such a bright idea when kids become adults, who don't earn because they are uneducated and thick as shit. They then won't be paying taxes, so no winter fuel allowance (suspect that'll be gone anyway by the time I'm old). Need a state-funded nurse to wipe your arse? Sorry no money for that. The point in a species is to try and survive as a species for as long as possible, hell it's the basis of evolution. We all have to forego something for the benefit of less worthwhile causes (propping banks etc), so allowing for the survival of the species seems like a more worthwhile cause somehow. I suspect you're probably trolling in all fairness, but the level of selfishness some people show really irks me (and I'm far from selfless).
          1. This post has been deleted by its author

          2. Evil Auditor Silver badge

            @Ben Tasker

            No, not trolling, I'm quite serious about those questions. First, the "I" referred not so much to me but more generally to everyone. Of course there are good reasons to pay taxes (among others for schools). This is, however, more of an economics question as are your other points. I understood "long term" in Scott Broukell's comment of much longer term than economics can reach. A more tangible question would be: why should I not drive my fossile fuel guzzling car to safe some raw oil for someone who might need it 500 years ahead? Now for something different. You may feel the needs to survive as a species (although I doubt it) and act upon. But there is no such thing as a drive to "try to survive as a species". All there is is the individual drive to having sex. And as a somewhat rational being I can very well decide whether I want to reproduce.
            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              @Evil Auditor

              "And as a somewhat rational being I can very well decide whether I want to reproduce." Fine by me. My offspring will inherit your hard earned resources when you die off. Bye then, don't take too long will you?
        2. You Are Not Free
          Alert

          @Evil Auditer

          "Why should I forego whatever in favour of someone's children?" Or, to refine. "Why should I forego whatever in favour of children?" I can only imagine you're cold hearted, empty, soul-less and hating to come out with a statement like that, not someone people should be listening to. Thumbs down.
          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            not birth control...

            It's not people having children, 2 adults having 2 or 3 kids is balanced-ish - the children replace the adults when the adults die and there's a small increase in the population, the problem is that the two adults are hanging around for a lot longer than they used to. What we need to do is reduce our consumption of resources (probably fairly drastically) to compensate - right now all the wonderful tech is working, but it's costing 2 or 3 times what the planet can sustain to do it.
      3. Alan W. Rateliff, II
        Paris Hilton

        Some people don't think it be the way it is, but it do.

        Or, as in the case now, developed countries impose standards upon third-world nations which have the effect of preventing them from developing and essentially doom them to famine, disease, and warfare. But, we give them clean water, mosquito nets, and solar power, which makes it all better. And the brain-washing perpetrated by parents is part of their parental guidance. Whether good or bad, parents are free to raise their children as they see fit. And this is a Good Thing(tm) to a large degree: think about the one or two children who stray from their parents' guidance/brain-washing to establish their own way of religious, political, moral, or ethical thinking. The issue is that while children develop, they rely upon authority to help them make sense of the world. And if the parents don't provide that authority, someone must, which begs the question: who knows better how to raise our children? Paris, better not to raise children, but free to do so.
    7. This post has been deleted by its author

    8. Knochen Brittle

      Yes, the major reason is that 'our' so-called 'elite' ruling-class fears losing monopoly power,

      as the privilege of these parasites depends on their continuing ability to rob and exploit the '3rd world' [be that a geographical location or politically disenfranchised class] which, if raised out of its current impotence, will no longer be amenable to such abuse. // The function of Religion, whose 'ministers' are a self-selecting specially hypocritical subset of the ruling-class, is to manage the mass of human misery, not lessen it, by massaging the minds of the victims with cunning lies to convince them that this current Scheißspiel is the inevitable natural order of things, whilst partaking generously in the fruits of their despoliation. // Education, particularly the political variety, is the key to breaking this criminal system ~ knowledge empowers People to emancipate from their Slavers, which is precisely why such huge effort is invested to confound that process. Wherein, if you rely on Religion for guidance, the vicious circle is closed. // Population stabilisation or reduction would obviously be a great help to quality of life on the planet, and most educated people naturally gravitate towards limiting themselves to 2 children per pair, i.e. replacement rate, which is effectively the same as the one child policy. // Re. WW3, I think we still have about 10 years breathing space to get our shit wired and avert it, plus a few other disasters.
      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Bedwetters unite

        "Re. WW3, I think we still have about 10 years breathing space to get our shit wired and avert it, plus a few other disasters."

        Clean sheets for Herr Brittle! These are soaking wet.

    9. This post has been deleted by its author

    10. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      why only at one end?

      why is population control only considered at one end? why not have a cap at 75 say? work to 60, 15 years retired then kaput? that'd do for me. would save a fortune for the NHS and other resources.
      1. This post has been deleted by its author

      2. Khaptain Silver badge
        FAIL

        @AC Major Difference

        There is a major difference between eliminating that whcih already exists and that which doesn't. If I gave you a gun and asked you to eliminate your healthy 75 year old granny or simply pull your "Gene Pool Agregator" out a bit quicker, which would you choose to do .
        1. Ben Tasker Silver badge

          @ravenviz

          To be fair if I'd said Octogenarian (didn't clock her age, so might not be accurate) it'd have reduced the shock!
    11. L.B.

      I absolutely agree we need to start reducing the population...

      ...there are just too many of us for the world to sustain. This can only be done on a regional basis (country by country), but we (as a race) need to start somewhere. I would for a start stop all forms of child credits/support in this country with the proviso that: - Anyone who requests state help to bring up baby is admitting they have bread beyond their means. As such, both parents should have to "see the vet" before getting any money to assist looking after their current offspring. It's about time we got shot of the "I've got rights" crap, where every moron expects everyone else to pay for their "rights" to have babies, IVF and much, much more. Everyone needs to be forced to take responsibility for their own choices and actions. Some will undoubtedly say I'm just a cold heartless bar-steward (and they may be a little correct), but that's because I don't have problems with basic logic. That is why I will never give money to charities for "saving the starving babies". It's not because I don't care, it is because it solves nothing, every baby you save this year is just another mouth to feed next year, plus all the new babies. Any society that breeds beyond its means (1st or 3rd world) is doomed to reach a point were starvation and very low living standards become the norm. It is only about 100 year ago that in Britain the norm was to have 4 to 5 children, as 3 to 4 were expected to die due to disease and lack of food. better medicine and vastly improved agriculture made it possible to massively increase population since then, but the limits have been reached and exceeded.
    12. Zippy the Pinhead
      Stop

      @ Khaptain

      "I mean simply a one child per household kind of policy." You mean like the one China has in place? Not voting you down.. but I'm simply asking you to stop and think about what you suggested.
    13. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      @Khaptain

      I'm sorry that you can't get a girlfriend. I really am.

      But people quite like having children, and it's none of your business to interfere with that. Keep your human-hating fascist fantasies to yourself.

      1. Khaptain Silver badge
        WTF?

        @AC

        >I'm sorry that you can't get a girlfriend. I really am.

        >But people quite like having children, and it's none of your business to interfere with that. Keep >your human-hating fascist fantasies to yourself.

        Some facts, I have been happily married for more than 18 years, I am well travelled and relatively well educated.

        As I previously mentioned I find the world to be a wonderfull place, it is simply let down by some non thinking "Etres Humaines".

        We are happier to take rather than to give, our selfishness leads to our destruction. And yet you don't have to be Einstein to realise that a limited population could survive endlessly on the available resources. I believe that some of the Amazon tribes actually do this very successfully.

        I don't hate people and I am certainely not a fascist. What I do hate is the abuse, the waste and the wanton selfishness displayed by human kind.

        We have the intelligence to have a peacefull world whereby all men live equally. We have the means to distribute and develop health and care for everyone.

        But do we do this, of course we don't, not unless there is finacial gain behind it. We hide our heads in the sand whilst raping the earth of everything.

        I merely presented my opinion which is about reducing the world population. I did not and will not advocate that someone should have the decision as to who lives or who dies. I beleive that as intelligent beings we can make that choice for ourselves.

        Someone with 7 kids chooses that option just the same way that I choose to have none, there's nothing fascist or hateful about that. I don't wish to decide for others , I only wish that they would think rationally about what they are doing before doing it.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          "Blah blah blah....I did not and will not advocate that someone should have the decision as to who lives or who dies. I beleive that as intelligent beings we can make that choice for ourselves."

          WTF?!?!

          So are you going to be one of the people that chooses to die for the purposes of reducing the population or is this way of thinking just for the other people, sorry, I mean "intelligent beings", are they your followers or something, are you their Dear Leader?

          1. Khaptain Silver badge

            >So are you going to be one of the people that chooses to die for the purposes of reducing the> >population

            By mentioning the choice as to who dies I was refering to "someone" elses remark concerning euthanasia which is not something I would choose to do. I would not take life away from anyone, it's not my choice to make..

            By mention the choice as to who lives I was refering to my choice about not having children. This is my choice to make as it is for almost everyone.

            >are they your followers or something, are you their Dear Leader?.

            I have the right to my opinion how you treat that is up to you but I consider your kneejerk reaction quite unnecassary.

            @Syldra

            >I can respect your decision of not having children, even if I don't understand it

            I on the other hand don't understand why everyone should have children. In the 1800s people often had children because they required extra hands around the farm, they were cheaper than hired hands.. Yes in those days the children did come in handy, we have the knoweldge and the information which should allow us to build our own barn nowadays.

            When I talk about not having enough or having too much I am more concerned about inequality rather than social status. Why should a hard working man be paid so little and a banker paid so much. The banker would never be able to fend for his children with his bare hands whereas the worker probably could.

            @Everyone

            Today, I have the impression that there are many people who have children for all the wrong reasons, peer pressure, boredom relief or because that is what they were told they should do. I seldom hear anyone mentioning a good reason for having children other than for personal satisfaction, for example when was the last time that you heard someone say "I love my spouse so much that I want to have a child to him/her". There are a few exceptions but I believe that they are rare.

            So what exactly are the reasons for having children, personal happiness. I don't know you tell me.

            It appears that rational decison is a rare thing when it comes to having children. Don't you find that strange for "Intelligent Beings."

            Nature has an amazing capacity to decide on birth, death and the survival of a species. When a species becomes to abundant for example : nature finds a method of diminishing one of the essential resources that the species needs, hence culling the species and restablishing balance.

            In we do nothing, nature will run it's course and re-establish a balance but probably a lot more brutaly than we would choose to do ourselves. All we have to do is limit new birth, no one gets hurt, no one dies.. Whats so damned difficult to understand.

            1. This post has been deleted by its author

            2. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              @Khaptain

              You are a strange one, that's for sure.

              I don't think you've not had kids because you believe it will make any difference to the worlds population and resources, because it won't, and I don't think you're doing it to set an example to the rest of us, because it won't.

              So you're either doing it because you don't know the value of children, or because you haven't managed to have any.

              In this childless life, of which you are such an advocate, what will happen when you grow old, who will you have around you?

              1. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

                Sad

                "So you're either doing it because you don't know the value of children, or because you haven't managed to have any."

                I think it's a simple fear of responsibility, which is then rationalised and hidden beyond the self-delusion of "having made a free decision"...

                1. Anonymous Coward
                  Anonymous Coward

                  "I think it's a simple fear of responsibility"

                  To me, that comes under - Don't know the value of children, because if he did, he would overcome that fear.

                  Although, we are likely giving it too much thought. He might just say these things because he lives in an over populated area and wants everyone to stop having kids because he thinks that will make life more comfortable for himself.

                  1. Khaptain Silver badge

                    @ac

                    Nope, I currently work in the city and live in the country. In a sense I have the best of both worlds.

                    I do not live a luxury life but I do live a comfortable life.

                    There's no point in reading behind the lines, you will not find much. I have stated my thoughts and opinions and it really is all very simple. Not everyone has the same ideas and needs, these are just mine. Although I do firmly believe that most people have no idea at all as to what they want and that is "sad".

                    1. Anonymous Coward
                      Anonymous Coward

                      I think the problem most people have with your thread is that you indicate that everyone should be encouraged to not have kids, you've already stated that your view is simply your own and fairly unique. So why pretence imposing that on everyone else, surely you expect a hostile response?

                      1. Khaptain Silver badge

                        No I do not think that everyone should stop having children but I do believe that people should seriously think about why they are having children and also to consider what future they will be bringing them into.

                        7 Billion people, how many more do we need, why can't we reduce the numbers and try harder to give everyone a reasonable life instead of giving everyone a mediocre life. We have the capacity and the intelligence to it, we just don't want to........

                        1. Anonymous Coward
                          Anonymous Coward

                          We have the capacity and the intelligence to it, we just don't want to........

                          No, in the blink of an eye, people would rather forgo all that to have kids. So it seems that you really don't know the value of children,

                          Besides, who's to say what the future holds, what discoveries and technological advancements will be made in the face of diminishing resources. Why prevent those opportunities?

                          1. Khaptain Silver badge

                            No, in the blink of an eye, people would rather forgo all that to have kids.

                            Et voila, the perfect example of our intelligence. Forego the well being of all for some personal satisfaction.

                            What the future holds is determined today, not tommorrow, having children or not , will not change that fact.

                            >Why prevent those opportunities?

                            Evolution won't stop if we are 1 Million, 7 Billion or 25 Trillion, so if the opportunites are to arise they will anyway..

                            Have you also considered the option that it might just be your child that invents the Doomsday machine, pushes the big red button, instegates the next world war. Mines won't thats for sure, lol.

                            1. Anonymous Coward
                              Anonymous Coward

                              You claim to be unaware as to why people feel the need to have kids and at the same time claim wholesale that they do it simply for their own selfish needs. You are wrong, you don't know why people have kids (you said that yourself), you only know why YOU don't. So you can't use it to support your argument, not that it does.

                              "Forego the well being of all for some personal satisfaction." Well being as defined by who exactly? You? For most people, having kids and grandkids counts enormously towards their well being. Your logic supersedes their need for children does it? Now who is forgoing the well being of others?

                              1. Evil Auditor Silver badge

                                @Khaptain & others re not having children

                                Khaptain, thank you for your comments. I think I understand you very well, no need having a beer together ;-)

                                @Others: I wonder how short-witted one can be. Do you think just one reason exists for not having kids? Rest assured, there are many of which a few are: do not feel the need, regard it as too expensive, do not like them, want to live an independent life, do not want to interfere with a perfect relationship, not wanting to bear the responsibility, do not want to wipe arses, cannot stand the noise etc.

                                Once a father of three accused me of being extremely selfish for not having kids because, as others here also pointed out, kids will be paying for my pension etc. I could have argued with economics and rising national deficit which would imply that, on average, each individual is costing the state more than it contributes. But before I could answer he added that, when we are getting old and becoming in need of care, he will be the one with kids looking after him. I came across this argument in this forum as well. Now tell me, who is selfish if this is a reason for producing offsprings... (My not so serious answer was: I can save all the money he is spending for his kids and when I'm old, I will be able to pay for lots of young ladies to look after me. That silenced him instantly.)

                                1. Anonymous Coward
                                  Anonymous Coward

                                  @Evil Auditor

                                  I can assure you that I'm the only one that is taking the slightest bit of interest in trying to figure out where either of you are coming from before dismissing you as a loons, and I'm only doing it because I find your mindset interesting.

                2. Khaptain Silver badge
                  FAIL

                  @Vlad

                  I choose not to have any and I am not having any, for me that is a "responsable" decision.

                  Or is it a better idea to have children that I dont want. Think about it a little.

              2. Khaptain Silver badge

                @AC

                LOL, you really would need to come and have a beer with me, you would understand a hell of a lot afterwards.

                The main reason that I do not want to have kids is very simple. I do not feel the need nor the desire to have any.

                Am I setting an example, of course I am to myself, I choose to not have any and I am not having any, its very simple really.. If it also sets an example to others then fine if not it won't matter to me.

                >So you're either doing it because you don't know the value of children, or because you haven't >managed to have any.

                I neither love nor hate children, I am indifferent to them. The value of children is a concept that depends upon a multitude of parameters and context.

                Without going into the gory details, yes I can definately confirm that I am capable of producing children.

                >In this childless life, of which you are such an advocate, what will happen when you grow old, >who will you have around you?

                Probably just as many people as you will, except that it won't be my children. When I can no longer fend for myself I see no purpose in continuing to live, I do not want to become a burden to myself or to others. At the end of my life I will die just as everyone else does, whether or not I am surrounded by my children will make no difference whatsover.

                I lead a very healthy and very active life, I make my own choices where I can, I have a great wife and own a nice home in the country. I am happy with what I have and I feel no need whastover to have children , why is that such a hard concept to grasp.

                The populace have a tendancy to think along only one very narrow path, I do not wish to travel down that same path, it makes me feel useless as a human being.

                The planet won't care if I don't have children, I certainly don't care. The planet needs to breath, if by not having children it helps the planet and everyone then I am happy with my choice.

                Children( human beings) are only a very small part of a very large picture. The extinction of the human race from the planet earth will probaby have "Zero" consequences in relation to the earths existence, well except for the polution that is.. No one will ever know we even existed.

                The doomsday machine will not be an external device or catastrophe, it will be mankind itself.

                .

                1. Anonymous Coward
                  Anonymous Coward

                  "The main reason that I do not want to have kids is very simple. I do not feel the need nor the desire to have any.

                  I neither love nor hate children, I am indifferent to them

                  whether or not I am surrounded by my children will make no difference whatsover.

                  The planet won't care if I don't have children, I certainly don't care."

                  You say the above, which to me indicates an extremely existential nihilistic view point and at the same time profess to have great concern to the welfare of mankind. You simply don't add up, you're in denial about something.

                  1. Khaptain Silver badge

                    <quote>You say the above, which to me indicates an extremely existential nihilistic view point and at the same time profess to have great concern to the welfare of mankind. You simply don't add up, you're in denial about something.

                    </quote>

                    Yes I admit to having an "existential nihilistic " approach, I do not believe that we serve any real purpose. After all we are just a bunch of atoms floating about in space.

                    But the fact of this matter is that I do exist, I do have feelings and I do care about the welfare of mankind.

                    Am I in denial, I do not believe so. I believe that mankind could do so much better but unfortunately I do not posses the solution. Ayn Rand summed up a lot about our current society in Atlas Shrugged, unfortunately those colonies at the end of the book dont exist.

                    .

                2. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

                  "The extinction of the human race from the planet earth will probaby have "Zero" consequences in relation to the earths existence, well except for the polution that is."

                  It will just mean the complete failure of this planet to produce life capable of competing even on intrasystem scale, let alone on galactic or universal scale. Seven billion years of efforts with bugger all results. Other that that - no consequences at all...

                  1. Khaptain Silver badge

                    @Vlad

                    <quote>It will just mean the complete failure of this planet to produce life capable of competing even on intrasystem scale, let alone on galactic or universal scale. Seven billion years of efforts with bugger all results. Other that that - no consequences at all...</quote>

                    Competing against who and competing for what exactlly ?

                    <quote>Seven billion years of efforts with bugger all results</quote>

                    There was no effort involved really, we are merely the product of a complex evolutionary process. So we certainly can't claim any credit for that.

                    Since we know of no other intelligent lifeform anywhere other than our own planet why would our disappearance matter. If we do survive for any futher future length of time, I presume that we would probably travel to other planets, consume all of the available resources and then move on, history has a tendancy to repeat itself. We would probably become responsable for the largest trail of pollution/destruction since time began.

                    I suppose we are a little like the Death Star, it's a good thing though that we don't posses one of those damned superlasers.

                    Can you think of any other species capable of so much destruction just for personal satisfaction.

                    1. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

                      "There was no effort involved really, we are merely the product of a complex evolutionary process."

                      How can there be a complex evolutionary process without effort? Dinosaurs and prehistoric forests toiling for 100s of millions of years, storing sunlight energy inside their bodies, plants making oxygene so that Khaptain could breathe, animals storing nutrients so that Khaptain could eat, bacteria breaking down Khaptain's waste products so that he would not sink in his own shit...

                      "Since we know of no other intelligent lifeform anywhere other than our own planet"

                      Not knowing about them is not a proof of their absence.

                      "Can you think of any other species capable of so much destruction just for personal satisfaction."

                      I know that each species acts for its personal satisfaction, because that's how evolution feedback works - If a wolf will ignore its hunger it will die and so will its species. If a chicken who outgrew the egg will not act for his satisfaction and hatch it will die and so will its species.

                      Now, you accept that humans are a product of the evolution. However, somehow all other species produced by the same evolution have turned out to be beautiful, peace-loving cuties who poop rainbows on regular basis but we, the ugly humans, producing hairless, crying, crawling, revolting babies who grow into greedy, promiscuous, regularly drunk monsters are the one exception?

                      Isn't it more logical to assume that the humankind, with its thirst for resources and inability to live "sustainably" was produced by that same evolutionary process specifically to be thirsty for resources and not being able to live "sustainably"?

                      Has it ever occurred to you that the evolution, having moved from pre-cellular to single-cell to multi-cell organisms to plants to animals to Khaptain, must not necessarily stop at the latter?

                      And if the evolution is to continue then, eventually, whether Khaptain or a post-Khaptain will run out of resources on this particular planet?

                      And when that happens, who will take the process of evolution beyond the planet?

                      Hint: that will be Khaptain's job.

                      But how will Khaptain know what he is supposed to do? There are no evolutionary manuals and leaflets printed in stone, lying on top of a mountain, as far as we know, at least.

                      That is actually simple - he will do things to achieve personal satisfaction and they will guide him to do the right thing even if he himself will not be capable of understanding why or what for.

                      1. Khaptain Silver badge

                        Vlad, the evolutionary comedian

                        Effort always involves Energy but Energy does not involve effort.

                        Effort I believe is a concious decision that will require a certain amount of energy to perform.

                        Evolution did not require effort, but I agree that it did require energy.

                        Evolution is a hap hazard process that is constantly "evolving" in relation to the environment , the varying amount of elements, heat and light etc . These conditions do not require effort as effort implies intention. Evolution has no guide lines or path to follow, this is what gives the universe an infinite number of possibilities over which we, as human beings, have absolutely no absolute control.

                        >Has it ever occurred to you that the evolution, having moved from pre-cellular to single-cell to multi-cell organisms to plants to animals to Khaptain, must not necessarily stop at the latter?

                        Of course evolution will not stop but Human Beings will. Evolution brought forth and also removed the dinosaurs, why do you believe that Human Beings would escape the process. We are after all finite.

                        Personal satisfaction should not be confused with instinct. Instincts are inbuilt mechanisms that allow all of the animals to survive. Hunger is a signal to eat in order that we can restore energy, pain is a signal that we are causing damage to the systrem etc etc. The wolf is not eating for his pleasure , he is eating for his survival.

                        Personal satisfaction has no relevance to survival, it is something that we do for our pleasure, this is where we see the major difference between ourselves and most of the animals.

                        If the Khaptain were to survive, what we he do, he would try and develop any and all of the survival skills that he could. Personal satisfaction would not keep him fed or watered although instinct might.

                        >Not knowing about them is not a proof of their absence.

                        That sounds a lot like a Sky Fairy theory.............

                        Doomsday for the Human Being is merely a small part of a eternal evolutionary process, it is important not to confuse eternal evolution with eternal existance.

                        1. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

                          @Khaptain

                          You were right about one thing - I was joking. But only really half-joking.

                          "Personal satisfaction should not be confused with instinct. Instincts are inbuilt mechanisms that allow all of the animals to survive. Hunger is a signal to eat in order that we can restore energy, pain is a signal that we are causing damage to the system etc etc. The wolf is not eating for his pleasure , he is eating for his survival."

                          So, how does the wolf decide that he needs to eat to survive? Does he think "well, I need about 12000 calories to get me through the end of the month, should I go look for a Bambi or maybe visit the nearby farm and get me a goat"?

                          Of course, he feels hunger, he eats, he feels satisfied, for now. Satisfaction and pleasure is just the brain's interpretation of when things go right. Just like pain is an alarm signal that something is wrong. Both are instinctive and are a product of evolution.

                          Now, the main problem:

                          "Evolution is a hap hazard process that is constantly "evolving" in relation to the environment , the varying amount of elements, heat and light etc . These conditions do not require effort as effort implies intention. Evolution has no guide lines or path to follow, this is what gives the universe an infinite number of possibilities over which we, as human beings, have absolutely no absolute control."

                          The suggestion that evolution is some kind of random, haphazard process requires a leap of faith much greater than even belief in a bearded old man living on a cloud, who passes the time by throwing banana skins under our feet and enjoying the commotion that follows...

                          It is clear that the evolution goes along a certain path, from simple to ever more complex organisation of matter. From higher to lower entropy, if you please. So, if we have evolved as a product of that process it is logical to suppose that we are an "intended" part of it and there are evolutionary reasons for our traits and behaviour.

                          We may only begin to guess what those reasons are as we do not yet know the exact driving force and agents of actual evolution (as opposed to the natural selection, which is just one small part of the process). However, it seems obvious that if the evolving environment were to progress along its evolutionary path it needs to consume energy and resources and, therefore, expand its realm.

                          Nature, however, cannot expand beyond the boundary of one planet using solely "natural" means. Or if it can, it has found an easier solution - to evolve a walking computer with a pair of dexterous manipulators, also known as Homo sapiens, to do the job for it.

                          Again, obviously, a Homo Sapiens which will be content just to live in harmony with the environment would be useless for those evolutionary purposes. What you really need is a human which will constantly corner himself into necessity to invent, innovate and search for more resources. That way he will finally force himself off the planet to continue that same evolutionary expansion.

                          Before you complain again that all this requires constant intervention of an "intelligent designer" of some sort or other - it does not. It can just as easily be predetermined by the combination of the natural laws into which this universe has settled during or after the Big Bang.

                          Regarding your question: "Evolution brought forth and also removed the dinosaurs, why do you believe that Human Beings would escape the process."?

                          I do not necessarily say we will. But if that happens it will mean either of the two things:

                          a) We have served our purpose (like the dinosaurs, gracefully retired as birds after having built the sufficient oil and gas reserves) and have been replaced by our evolutionary successors, whoever that may be or

                          b) We have failed and, as the consequence, the evolutionary line developing on Earth has failed and the future of the universe will be in the hands of another line - sturdier, smarter or more cunning the us.

                          1. Khaptain Silver badge

                            @Vlad the Wolf in sheeps clothes

                            Hi Vlad

                            I began to write yet another reponse but unfortunately I must concentrate on some personal work. I enjoyed reading your last reponse and I would like to concluce my saying that we should agree to disagree.

                            I do have an existential nihilistic approach, the futility of mankind for me is all to evident. Whereas you appear to have a more extropianistic approach.

                            Regardless of whos approach is correct, nature will continue its path, evolution will continue to produce new species but mankind has absolutely no garauntee to be within that future. He might , he might not.

                            In any event in order to leave this planet I think that evolution would require the production of another species that is capable of surviving within space itself. Obviously human beings have a long way to go before arriving at that point.

                            In order to return to the initial subject , one minute closer to doomsday. Since the day we left the oceans and for as long as we remain, we will always be neighbours with Doomsday. As powerfull as we think we are, there are far too many elements capable of wiping us out very quickly that we will always remain on the knifes edge..

  5. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. Jedit
      Angel

      Preventing procreation can be fun!

      You don't have to be willing to put your gonads where your mouth is, so long as someone else is willing to put your gonads where their mouth is...
      1. Local Group
        Devil

        In an effort to control the population explosion

        The Anglo-American Gay Alliance and Amusement Park will be holding a mixer to meet our concerned heterosexual brothers and sisters. Open bar. Attire casual. Try it. You'll like it.

  6. Schultz
    Mushroom

    Send 007

    But he might want to spend some time on the road to add a bit of drama to the ticking clock scenario.

  7. Dan Price
    Mushroom

    This is a real thing?

    Having never heard of the Doomsday Clock before or since, I assumed Alan Moore had made it up in Watchmen.

    The more you know.

  8. Mattyod

    Running the Doomsday clock must be a thoroughly depressing job

    Presumably they spend their entire time thinking about how close to annihilation we all are.

    1. defiler Silver badge

      Setting the Doomsday Clock

      I'm sitting here imagining a bunch of Dr Strangelove-style half-lunatics in white coats wrestling with each other over the minute hand of a giant clock (not unlike the one on Countdown). I really hope I'm wrong and they all have "proper" jobs to go to as well...
      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        @defiler

        They do it as a hobby. Anyone detected of rationality or Enlightenment thinking gets expelled.

        That way they keep it nice and miserable.

  9. Jim 59

    Two clocks

    They should have seperate clocks for Nuclear war and climate armageddon. Rolling it into one muddies the issue and reduces the impact of the clock. Instant nuclear death is phsycologically more frightening than slow climate wipe out.

    1. Simon Neill
      I agree that they are separate issues and should be treated as such. However, I would add that the entire thing is in fact bollocks and needless. I would disagree that a nice fast death to a nuke is scarier than watching the entire world slowly go to shit as crops die and everyone starves. SOYLENT GREEN IS PEOPLE!!
  10. dotdavid
    Coat

    Doomsday clock

    And I always thought it was the non-functioning DST function of the iPhone alarm clock. *ducks*
  11. D. M
    Mushroom

    @Khaptain

    Religions and some cultures are aimed to populate the earth. They believe some how earth can support unlimited population. The answer: 1. Proper education (not some religion school bullshit) 2. Just get rid of all religions Human is doomed. We are doing our best for self destruction..
    1. Ben Tasker Silver badge
      Unfortunately as logical as your argument, it'd fail through the lack of logic a lot of religious types show. I can see it now You: We're banning all religion and educating kids properly Them: What! Why? You: Because Humanity is doomed, and we think religion is part of the issue Them: We will pray for salvation, and encourage others to the same
    2. Jim 59

      @D. M

      To see how the "get rid of all religions" project is going, see North Korea, Zimbabwe and the USSR.

      1. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

        @Jim 59

        You forgot to mention Cuba.

  12. Mr Young
    Joke

    You've used the word 'boffin' again?

    Damn your disrespect!
  13. Andrew Jones 2
    WTF?

    but....

    But all I see is text - even in the link - is there not a graphical representation of this hypothetical clock somewhere?
    1. Poor Coco
      http://www.thebulletin.org/content/doomsday-clock/overview
  14. ravenviz
    Black Helicopters

    Google should run it

    All needs to happen is Google automatically crawls the net for new stories about nuclear warheads / climate change and alters the clock for us. Then if it gets to 12 then the Streetview cars can release nerve gas and we all die.
  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I am very glad that

    past girlfriends refer to me as a cockroach as it means I should survive when the bombs finally drop.
  16. Red Bren
    Joke

    Hang on a minute

    I thought humans only appeared on the planet at 30 seconds to midinght? http://www2.nau.edu/~lrm22/lessons/timeline/24_hours.html Damn those jurassic nukes! Does this mean we don't exist yet?
  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @Khaptain -2

    "Think how many problems would be resolved simply by reducing the population. There would be more farmland/food to go around, the available natural energies would last longer, we would automatically reduce pollution and waste, the forests would begin to grow/increase." It's funny that those are more a limitation of the current system than of any kind of population number. Take the first iteam you are worried about; farmland. Well, let us build skyscrappers to produce food. We grow our young humans in tower blocks, so why not young carrots? As for energies...well, there is a status quo to be maintained. And right now the idea that energy needs to be consumed and never replaced is, again, a facet of the current system. That will change; and many folks are looking into it. Maybe even if they find Mr Higgs they'll shed some light on some new chapter. Pollution is the flip side of the same coin. Again, a systemic issue, rather than a population one. Oh, what system am i talking about? Aye...capitalism....sort that and we're sorted.. :) With hope .
    1. itzman
      Facepalm

      We grow our young humans in tower blocks, so why not young carrots?

      Try 'sunlight' And if you think you are going to use windmills to generate electric light, well the output from a windmill is about one percent of the solar insolation per unit area, so thats even worse .. I suppose you could have loads of nuclear reactors acting to generate energy to synthesise all the food.. ..but that's off the average green agenda, isn't it?
      1. John 110
        FAIL

        I'm sure...

        @itzman. I'm sure that I've seen the sun shining on tower blocks. There's nothing intrinsically wrong about using multilevel growing areas except maybe the logistics involved in irrigation...
        1. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

          Re: why not young carrots?

          Because agricultural land is much cheaper for now.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      We grow our young humans in tower blocks, so why not young carrots?

      Because carrots aren't worth much and tower blocks are expensive to build and maintain.
  18. Ken Hagan Gold badge

    The historical trend

    The clock has stood at 7 minutes to midnight in 1980, 1968, 1960 and 1947. Apparently today is more dangerous than any of those times, but significantly less dangerous than in 1949 (3 minutes, when the USSR got their first A-bomb) or 1953 (2 minutes, the first H-bomb). The world now contains an unknown number of such weapons, some of them in the hands of quite deranged nutters. On the other hand, it no longer contains the USSR or Curtis LeMay. Apparently these two factors sorta cancel out. Yeah. That sounds scientific.
    1. Knochen Brittle
      Devil

      This Dumbsday Clock ...

      ... was never anything but political propaganda to terrorise Yanks into obedience to their Pentagovernment. Proof of the fact is that, upon the USAn warcriminals being deterred by Soviet parity from continuing to nuke anyone at the drop of a hat, they moved it *closer* to midnight. Therefore, for correct understanding, it is better to consider this gimmick in reverse ~ as a political counter heading inexorably down towards zero ability of the USA to monopolise power and become world dictator.
  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The ultimate irony of "evolution"

    *If* you accept the premise that we are over-populating the planet and the only way to resolve this is by restriction (either voluntary or otherwise) on the production of children. Then you discount compulsory, as this requires a totalitarian regime which we don't have, then you are left with voluntary. Which leads to the situation where the "intelligent" members of society reduce their family size whilst the "less intelligent" will continue to breed like rabbits. End result an evolution into a more stupid race. Oh well, sounds like we are doomed whichever way we go then :-)
    1. Khaptain Silver badge

      @All

      Yes I have put my money where my mouth is. I have taken the liberal and freeminded decision not to have children. We have a beautiful planet, nature has provided us with everything and what do I see, greed, destruction , polution and f***cking lawyers. Is this what you guys call freedom of choice. The politicians, bankers and various other Capitilistic, Greedy bastards have done there utmost to ensure that you and I as individuals have very little choice. As an example, people do not get paid in relation to their labour, they get paid in relation to what their employer decides to give them. When you go to a supermarket you can only buy what the supermarket has decided they can make a profit from, it has nothing to do with your actual needs, ad infinitum. Having children has nothing to do with personal choice, it is more about personal greed and egotistical desire. There is no such thing as "Human Survival" as mentioned above read Richard Dawkins, the gene pool is far stronger than the human being, it will definately give you some food for thought. How many of you "Fathers" would be able to provide for your children if the state did not furnish benefits, unless of course you are one of those overpaid people that have a salary which does not reflect your actual capacity. Do you truly believe that you could support your entire familly "alone", imagine for a moment that you really did have to build the barn, dig the garden, shoot some wild pigs etc..... The more mouths you had to feed the less likely you would have a grin on your face. The contemporary First World Human Being is basically a selfish bastard that knows no better than his own desires, unfortunately he is seldom capable of achieving those desires just by the fruit of his own labours. ( Someone always pays the price for your "apparent" wealth.) Why are the children never taught to "Think for themselves". They are always taught how to think in a way that will benefit those above and certainely not for the child itself. Our society has been nurtured to a point whereby individuals can no longer fend for themselves, they are completely at the mercy of the state. How many truly Autonomous people do you know, Ok lets say someone with at least 20% autonomy. When the state falls through, and it will, just how will you feed all your children ? Over-Population is your legacy to your children, they will have less space, less choice and an even smaller understanding of their own potiential. Sounds f***cking wonderfull. No, I don't believe in some kind of totalinarian society, but I do believe that we as intelligent beings should be capable of a little bit more forethought in relation to what is self evident. "When you throw a piece of meat to starving dogs, how civil will you expect them to be ". [Why don't the carraige returns appear in the preview]
      1. Ben Tasker Silver badge

        @Khaptain

        You're of course right about 'Human Survival', I simply phrased it that way for the sake of brevity. I support a family on a piss-poor wage (compared to my output) and without benefits. Admittedly I struggle to do so, but it is possible. I don't of course run a farm so haven't felt the need to build any barns or slaughter any pigs. My kids are taught to think for themselves, anything I can furnish them with to potentially help them in the future is good. I haven't a clue about farming, so no I won't be teaching them that myself. I believe the idea is, for better or worse, it's civilities that set us apart from those starving dogs. Doesn't always work that way it's true, but I'm not convinced we'd be a better race if it never worked that way. I'm curious as to how you expect any of us to teach kids everything you list? I can't think of anyone _ANYWHERE_ that is capable of living life purely on the back of his own labours. Even if you wanted to live the Goode Life, would you not need to purchase seeds (which would involve someone elses work?). As it stands, Animals tend to starve to death if there isn't sufficient food around. Humans do to, but there are people who at least try to get others food.
      2. This post has been deleted by its author

      3. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

        @Khaptain

        "I have taken the liberal and freeminded decision not to have children." Thank you, Khaptain! Very nice of you. My kids won't need to worry about bumping into your offspring in the future.
        1. Khaptain Silver badge

          Never mind the bolloks.

          Unfortunately Vlad is a believer in " The future lies within you children". Wrong, the future lies in the here and now. The future is nothing more than a concept for those that don't have answers today.
      4. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Helluva chat up line there, Khappy

        No wonder you can't get a girlfriend.

        You're just turning defeat into a moral victory - your politics follows on from you being an irrationally pessimistic sod.

      5. Syldra

        @Khaptain

        So if I can't pay for all my children alone, I'm a weight for the system and if I do have enough money it's because I'm overpaid ?

        If I really had to "build the barn", then I believe I wouldn't have stopped at 4 kids because I would need hands to help me. More kids now would mean more hands later. And if I had the need to hunt for my food, that would mean even more kids because accidents do happen. Can't really take the chance to have a shortage of hands because the wild boar killed our youngest now can we ?

        I can respect your decision of not having children, even if I don't understand it. But don't try to pass it as the one good "self evident" thing to do because it is not. Over population is not the problem, it's over utilization of resource that is. There's room for far more if you don't waste what you don't need. There's already food enough for everyone, but we (developped countries) prefer to throw it in the garbage instead of sharing it with those who need.

    2. Goat Jam

      Stupid Breeders

      See "Idiocracy"

      http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0387808/

  20. Tom 13
    Mushroom

    Ho-hum.

    More pointless propaganda from fascist bigots. A realistic assessment would have moved the clock forward 4 minutes because of the other group of irrational fascists in Iran who are intent on using one to implement the next Final Solution to the Jewish Problem, with no regard to possible outcomes of that action.
    1. Knochen Brittle
      Facepalm

      Rich, Creamy Hypocrisy

      ... to complain of antiquated propaganda whilst parroting your own warmonglerish modern variety. And naturally, whomsoever faileth to follow the Imperial Diktat and dares defend himself becomes the 'New Hitler' who must be scheduled for destruction, along with whatever nation produced him, to save our precious withering flower of 'democracy', of course. But really, this pisspoor political dementia you so proudly display has meantime worn pretty thin. However, to stretch the gaps even further, please provide links for any facts you claimed and your working definition of 'fascist', thanks!
  21. Ross 7

    Scale

    What the hell kind of scale are they using? I know there's a (small) risk people might start nuking other people, but surely the scale runs from 12:01 to 00:00, that is 720 minutes. Putting us around 23:55 would mean we were 99% of the way to armageddon - it sure don't feel like it.
  22. John P
    Coat

    Bitter?

    One has to wonder, out of the population-control proponents, how voluntary their lack of reproduction really was... Mines the one with the 3-day old in the pocket!
    1. Khaptain Silver badge
      Happy

      @John P

      Personally speaking my decision was made voluntarily after having lived and worked in several countries of differing political and religous regimes. After seeing that the same damned mess was everywhere, albeit wearing a different hat, I took the decision not to add my genes to the pool. That was 20 odd years ago and I have never changed my mind. [¨PS - Without going into the details I know that my "genes" are perfectly capable of reproducing] Quick call the helpdesk my Carriage Returns have disappeared again.
  23. Debe
    Meh

    Arbitrary

    What are they going to do if it reaches midnight and we aren’t all turned to ash by flaming nuclear death? Of course the answer is go by seconds of course... right untill they run out of them and then they're buggered. It’s all a bit arbitrary isn’t it? Anyone can make random stuff up, infact i will. I hereby declare the cupcake count of terror. We are currently at 4 cupcakes to annihilation, three if I get peckish after lunch…
    1. Khaptain Silver badge
      Angel

      @Debe

      Time is infinite, they cannot run out, there will always be a remaining divisable element even though we don't know the name for it yet. Cupcake sounds fine. Just remember that you must always split that last remaining piece cupcake in two, that way you can always have your cake and eat it too.
  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I'm struggling with....

    ...midnight represents the end of all humanity. Who changes the time from 23:59?
    1. Local Group
      Happy

      "Who changes the time from 23:59?"

      That's easy.

      The same guy who adds a day every 4 years.

      The Leap Year Fairy.

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward Altogether now ( alright the IM fans then! )..... "Two! Minutes! Toooo miiiiidniiiiihgt! The hands that threaten dooooom! Two! Minutes! Toooo miiiiidniiiiihgt! The kill the unborn in the woooomb!"
  26. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

    Getting closer to midnight?

    Wake me up when it's 6:00am...
  27. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

    To the Register team

    Empty lines are banned now???
    1. Knochen Brittle

      also

      posts are automatically going up without 'moderation', which is an improvement, whereas killing off CR is the unpardonable sin.
  28. retkirnov
    Go

    Tick Tock Goes The Corpus Clock

    Through-out all recorded history the unexplained, the hiding of the truth, facts and fictions alike have been an on going conspiracy. The most current being the 2012 conspiracy per say.

    However when you open your mind put down your smart phone, turn off your tv, unplug from the iNet and reflect about what you think you know, think you have read, think is real or unreal...

    is it not justified by your self; what is and what is not.

    Choose to believe is always in the end up to you and only you.

    Sift through the arguments for or against a particular theory will leave you with a head ache. Like this one "Revelations" written so long ago however the writings disturbingly are so familiar to events in our world today. Is it a conspiracy? Depends on who you ask I suppose.

    Have a look here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lIVjn_mrJVU and remember in the end ...

    You Decide.

  29. Marketing Hack Silver badge
    Alien

    So let me get this straight....

    We're 17 minutes to midnight, but stockpiles of nukes are being cut by the major powers, and the only use of nukes that seems realistic is a massive counterstrike against a rogue state like Iran or North Korea, and only if that rogue state knowingly commits suicide and nukes a neighbor first. Personally, that sounds more like 6 AM in the morning and that mankind is fairly safe from nuclear self-immolation.

    Maybe the scientists know about the alien invasion that is coming and will certainly require us to go nuclear so at least a few of us have a chance to survive!!

  30. heyrick Silver badge
    WTF?

    WTF?

    So when there is nothing specific for the world to be afraid of (what, are they blind?), it suffices to now be afraid of imaginary things?

    The only clock that scares me is the one I know is about to ring when I've had a night of not being able to sleep...

    And yes, Happy 2012. I await seeing the Mayans proved wrong. ;)

  31. Local Group
    Angel

    I remember when the Doomsday Clock

    was called Ezekiel's Wheel. That was thousands of years ago. Nothing ever happened.

  32. Mips
    Childcatcher

    Clocks

    A clock is a rather naive representation but it has been used many times and it is always a few seconds from midnight. However the problem and solution may be one and the same: if we were to have a nuclear conflict tomorrow then the resulting nuclear winter would resolve all our global warming issues. So the solution is a nuclear war. Only one question: whose backyard are we going to use?

  33. Your Retarded
    Mushroom

    Selfish and irresponsible

    Having children is fine, if you can afford to support them properly yourself and do not expect anyone else to be forced to help you.

    The decision to have children is an important one, and should be made taking into consideration all relevant factors. Most people do not think about this decision before making it. There are a large number of individuals of little education and meagre means who have learned only that having children entitles them to leech off others who work for a living.

    Any person with an ounce of intelligence, looking at the decision rationally, can choose when they want to have children and how many. If they can look at the world as it is today and see that there are limited resources, then a decision to increase the population by making more than two new people is a reprehensible demonstration of extreme selfishness and irresponsibility.

    I may have children one day. When I do I will ensure that decent values are imparted to them, that they receive a fitting eduction, and I will PAY FOR THEIR UPBRINGING MYSELF.

    There is no reasonable argument for forcing honest working people to pay for others' children. Such a structure only encourages the expectation of low-life to have everything handed to them on a plate for no effort, and perpetuates this attitude over generations.

  34. Bernard M. Orwell Silver badge

    Children

    We have one child, and have taken a deliberate decision to not have anymore directly because both my wife and I feel that human population is near out of control. Since the 1950's (not that long ago) the population of the planet has exploded and is set to expand exponentially, near doubling in the not distant future.

    Balance that against (in the UK) there are more than 30,000 children requring permanent adoption and yet only 83 were placed into permanent homes during 2010-2011.

    We felt the choice was clear; restrict ourselves to one birth and then adopt. I urge anyone thinking they'd like a large(r) family to consider the same path as we've taken.

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