The Dark Knight Rises, the last and final instalment in Christopher Nolan’s Batman series, packs a serious punch. For almost three hours audiences are held captivated by the reluctant return of the Caped Crusader to save Gotham City from a neo-fascist Nemesis in the guise of the megalomaniacal Bane. The political subtexts are not standard Hollywood fodder.

An unwitting anti-nuclear campaigner…

Nolan not only fesses up to the corruption at the heart of the otherwise civilized veneer of modern liberal Democracy, he also tackles head-on themes such as the inevitable compromise and capitulation to following orders intrinsic to carrying out state sanctioned authority, and ultimately, the darker impulses that may lay at the heart of the nuclear industries push into promoting itself as the clean energy solution of the future.

It is on this second score that The Dark Knight is at its most prescient, timely and cutting. One of the major arms of the Wayne Empire’s commercial interests is in developing Nuclear Fusion energy – the silver bullet often touted by the real world nuclear industry as the answer to the impending climate change crisis.

In the movie, the nuclear physicist who develops the reactor meets a rather grisly end once his usefulness to the new regime expires and, like Oppenheimer before him, becomes burdened with the knowledge that his revolutionary creation that was supposed to transform the world as the ‘peaceful atom’ will ultimately become a deathly blight on the planet. Or as Oppenheimer said, quoting Krisna, “Now I am become Death – Destroyer of worlds.”

Without giving away the end of the The Dark Knight Returns (that wouldn’t be fair) – it is a safe bet to say that Nolan’s movie certainly does no favors to the world’s already struggling nuclear industry.
Like all good art, the movie comes at just the right moment in time – a moment when Germany has just shut down its nuclear industry due to political pressure, and when the people of Japan are now taking to the streets en-masse to demand that its government refrain from restarting the countries nuclear industry post-Fukushima.

If any country knows about the dangers and horrors at the extreme ends of the nuclear chain it is surely Japan.

Yesterday marked the 67th anniversary of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, which were estimated to have killed more than 150,000 people. Currently in Japan, many thousands of people who lived in the vicinity of Fukushima Prefecture are still unable to return to their homes, despite the government having lowered the public safety radiation thresholds in the wake of the nuclear disaster, much to the chagrin of international observers such as the International Physicians for the Prevention of War.

The movie is successful in implanting in the minds of audiences the intrinsic and well-proven connections between nuclear bombs and nuclear power.

Namely, that plutonium is produced from uranium in a nuclear reactor. Military and civilian nuclear programmes are often closely linked. Most of the recent instances of nuclear proliferation have stemmed from ostensibly peaceful programmes (for example North Korea and Iran). Releases of radiation similar to or larger than those from a nuclear bomb can come from nuclear reactors and spent fuel ponds – meaning that every reactor is, in effect, a giant pre-positioned dirty bomb.

Its only a shame that Nolan’s epic finale has come to be shadowed by the atrocity that occurred in Aurora USA, where 12 people were killed and many more injured at the hands of a lone gunman who thought he was the Joker. That event horribly compounds the fact that Nolan’s movie is about the extremities of violence and its impact not only on individuals; but on economic structures, corporate governance, and the motives behind indefensible industries.

By driving the message home about the intrinsic dangers of nuclear power to such mainstream mass audiences, The Dark Knight Rises provides a strong counter-balance to the myth that the nuclear industry can ever be anything but a dangerous blight on modern civilization.

Most commented

67 comments

Show oldest | newest first

    • nihonin says:

      06:33am | 07/08/12

      So when you watch a movie you look for the anti ‘theme’ in all movies, I’d love to know what the ‘theme’ you received from the Blue’s Brothers, Rocky Horror Picture Show or Bad Boy Bubby.  I prefer to just watch movies and not read between the lines.

    • Gregg says:

      09:13am | 07/08/12

      Not much imagination there nihonin.
      You ought to let your mind run sometime and enjoy the trip all the more.

    • nihonin says:

      09:32am | 07/08/12

      Gregg, I watch pretty much all type of movies, yeah even chick flicks, cause ‘love’ is always good as the basis for comedies.  wink

    • L. says:

      11:05am | 07/08/12

      “‘I’d love to know what the theme’ you received from ....... Bad Boy Bubby.”

      That Cling Wrap has many uses..

      wink

    • Fiddler says:

      06:49am | 07/08/12

      dear James,

      You sir are an idiot, or dishonest. Or both. “The intrinsic and well-proven connections between nuclear bombs and nuclear power.” Yes, plutonium can be produced in SOME nuclear reactors, but guess what, we have this little thing called the IAEA, who countries who comply with their conditions and the NPT submit their reactors to scrutiny.

      A little research (beyond watching a superhero film) would tell you that mass spectrometry of the waste will tell a nuclear physicist in an intstant not only if plutonium has been produced, but how much. Plutonium is also used in reactors. Rather than go on about Japan (exactly how many people have died as a result of the reactor btw? I remember over 10,000 dying from a tsumani) maybe talk about France, or the UK, or America, or any other country which successfully operates nuclear reactors.

      Maybe you should provide solutions to the alleged problems, rather than making bullshit motherhood statements such as ” the myth that the nuclear industry can ever be anything but a dangerous blight on modern civilization

      I have an idea, why don’t you publish the rate of deaths per gWH produced by electricity worldwide, mention all the pollution created by solar panel manufacture (and mention the soon to be shortage of rare-earth materials)

      Please Punch, can you put something intelligent about nuclear energy, maybe get Ziggy Switowski or, you know, an actual scientist and not a “communications coordinator for an international NGO” to write it please?

    • dovif says:

      08:25am | 07/08/12

      I agree completely, why is the Left of Australian politics reliant on lies and mistruth, the truth is Germany is shuting down its reactors, because the French NUCLEAR reactors are more modern and have less waste.

      All the extreme left of Australian politic does is tell everyone the problems and offers no solutions, they says that Global warming (rebranded as climate change) is an issue, then they say you cannot solve it with Nuclear power. All the left ever offer is problems, they have never offered any solutions that is not a pipe dream

    • acotrel says:

      08:27am | 07/08/12

      When Hayek wrote the Constitut ion of Liberty, he probably did not consider what the combination of human frailty with his big new ideology could give us the global financial crisis.  If we leave a legacy of millions of tonnes of high level radioactive waste for future generations we are extrapolating our current capabilities.  There are no guarantees that future generations will appreciate the imperatives with preserving the safe storage and handling and engineering requirements. We are assuming that the world will not change, and that the future paradigm won’t involve dictators and extreme destruction of intellectualism.

    • wakeuppls says:

      08:36am | 07/08/12

      acotrel

      The fact that you think liberty caused the global financial crisis simply demonstrates your infallible bias.

    • ZSRenn says:

      08:37am | 07/08/12

      Fiddler: Why do you feel it necessary to insult people before your comment. You may have a reasonable argument but I will never know because the minute I read “You Sir are an idiot” I stopped reading. Anyone who would debate in this manner is not worth reading and obviously of low moral fibre. .

    • acotrel says:

      08:44am | 07/08/12

      @Dovif
      ’ they says that Global warming (rebranded as climate change) is an issue, then they say you cannot solve it with Nuclear power. All the left ever offer is problems, they have never offered any solutions that is not a pipe dream ‘

      That is an interesting comment. At the present time we have the luxury of being able to choose.  And rather than seizing on an obvious but hazardous path, we are about to develop nenewable energy sources, after we have done that it will be time to go nuclear.  Perhaps by then our engineers will have becomerisk conscious,  disciplined and creative thinking and not simply obsessed with plugging numbers into formulae.

    • M says:

      08:46am | 07/08/12

      Millions of tonnes? Try again acotrel.

    • dovif says:

      08:47am | 07/08/12

      Acrotel

      You need to wake up to the real world, there are already dictator and rogue states that has nuclear power, North Korea, Baltic states, Iran, Syria?, Isreal etc

      There is nothing stopping a rogue dictator getting their hands on Nuclear weapons in places like India, Pakistan, Russia, US, China etc

      To say Nuclear reactor is a clear danger, ignors a lot of more dangerous scenarios

    • Fiddler says:

      09:01am | 07/08/12

      acotrel, a little early in the day to be pulling cones surely?

      The fact that this country can’t even have a rational debate on the matter, let alone shows how politically immature the nation is. The fact that the press prints crap like this shows how pathetic our level of media is.

    • M says:

      09:18am | 07/08/12

      ZSRn, is it now wrong to call people stupid if they are stupid?

      Yes, i’m sure the PC cheer squad will be along to say you aren’t allowed to hurt anyone’s feelings, ‘cause everyone’s opinion is important whether it’s right or wrong.

      Let’s start calling a spade a fucking spade and not a two handed dirt relocation aide.

    • dovif says:

      09:36am | 07/08/12

      Acrotel

      More lies from the left who has always use deceit to do anything.

      Facts are renewable energy source like Wind farm and solar are not close to being profitable in the EU on a ETS price of AU$25.

      They will need energy prices to raise by another 25% for them to close to break even. There is no alternative to coal at the moment even under an ETS or Carbon tax, that is why Carbon tax will not make any difference to Australian emittion. All it does is hurt Australians, and Australian business

      That is why the EU had lowered their ETS to AU$8, because they know it makes no difference and just export jobs to China

    • Tim the Toolman says:

      09:48am | 07/08/12

      “You sir, are an idiot.” is far more polite than the ignorant, hysterical insult to our intelligence that this article represents.  Complaining about calling the author of this “article” an idiot is like complaining about someone who says “that’s uncalled for” after receiving an unwarranted kick to the head.

    • ZSRenn says:

      10:40am | 07/08/12

      M: remarking on the validity of an argument is one thing but saying someone is an idiot completely different. Personal attacks in debate are the mark of a poor debater, who feels they have lost the argument. 

      Fiddler does not know this person, James to the best of my knowledge has never attacked Fiddler. So why make the debate personal. It’s not good manners, so lacking in today’s society .

      Fiddler also makes these comments as an anonymous contributor whilst James has the balls to place his comments under his own name.  This is a fairly cowardly way of attacking people in my book.

      However, if you see nothing wrong with that, I understand and also feel empathy towards you for your lack of moral education.

    • M says:

      11:13am | 07/08/12

      If he’s a green and he’s against nuclear it makes his entire article a pointless exercise in mental masturbation as well as showing him to be an idiot.

    • Cath says:

      11:51am | 07/08/12

      Or better still put up a decent review of the movie, that mentions its trenchant criticism of revolutionary politics and the mercenary basis of much ‘social ‘justice’ activism - viz the ultimate motive of the one seeking to use the reactor (hidden and protected carefully from just such use by its creators and only accessed through incredible and despicable betrayal of trust, lying and deception) as a bomb.  THAT is what made the film so unexpectedly enjoyable for one dragged along unwillingly to view it .

    • Al B says:

      12:15pm | 07/08/12

      Hahaha Hayek gave us the GFC ....what? Huh? Oh acotrel what a dunce!

    • FlyOnTheWall says:

      12:27pm | 07/08/12

      Pretty hard to argue that the author of the article is NOT an idiot.

      Read it again, there can be only one conclusion - he’s an idiot!
      A lying idiot, too!
      There was so much BS and long drawn bows in that rubbish, dashed with a heavy dose of pretentious self-importance, that I’m surprised anyone read it all the way through.

      Take a vote, I reckon it’ll be 90-10 agreeing that this bloke is a goose!

    • Admiral Ackbar says:

      01:21pm | 07/08/12

      ZSRenn - because anyone who thinks that the Nuclear Fusion Energy in the Batman movie was anything but a plot device has to be an idiot. It was a MacGuffin, a plot device used so that we could see the good guys fighitng the bad guys in an action movie, nothing more. It could have been anything from a WMD to nude pics of Waynes mum, but in this case it was Nuclear Fusion. To some how change it into some bullshit commentary on the evils of Nuclear power, one would have to be an idiot.

    • M says:

      01:30pm | 07/08/12

      I’m still laughing at the mental imagery of Actorel pulling cones at 9:00am and rambling about Abbott.

    • DocBud says:

      01:58pm | 07/08/12

      @ZRBenn

      “Anyone who would debate in this manner is not worth reading and obviously of low moral fibre.”

      “Personal attacks in debate are the mark of a poor debater, who feels they have lost the argument. ......Fiddler does not know this person,”

      Yet elsewhere you bleated: “I born in 1959 have never felt part of this generation, will never feel part of this generation and am pissed at the bastardisation of the era to include me. I was affected by the mistakes of this horrid generation as much as anyone.”

      Do you know everyone from the baby boomer generation in order to qualify to describe them as horrid?

    • Fiddler says:

      02:49pm | 07/08/12

      ZSRenn, obviously you are still upset when you thought I was being ageist the other day, why not have a bex and lie down. Or read the rest of my comment and attempt to debunk my arguments. I really didn’t bother putting too much substance into them, simply because this peice was so poorly written. I didn’t see the need to throw pearls before swine so to say.

    • LJ Dots says:

      08:14pm | 07/08/12

      ZSRenn, I appreciate your input and insight and I sincerely hope that continues, but surely you have to baulk at the limitations of an entire article that is based on the premise of “coz Batman says”.

    • Queensland Observer says:

      06:59am | 07/08/12

      After reading this article, I wondered if the author of this article had a particular ideological barrow to push. It didn’t take me long to find out…

      “Norman has written for the Herald Sun, The Age, The Australian Financial Review, among others. He is the author of the book Bob Brown: Gentle Revolutionary, the first official biography of the Greens’ leader. He also works for several Australian environmental NGOs including Greenpeace and the Australian Conservation Foundation. Norman is based in Melbourne, but also spends time in Germany where he is part of a leftist artist and theatre collective Open Space.”

      Pushing a barrow? More likely driving a fully laden semi-trailer loaded to the brim with Leftist pro-Green ideology.

      I think in future I’ll take everything that James Norman says with a good pinch of salt.

    • wakeuppls says:

      08:00am | 07/08/12

      Haha I didn’t even read his bio and I knew he was a tree-hugger. What a joke

    • L. says:

      07:22am | 07/08/12

      Wow.. The facts as presented in this article were sobering and informati…. oh, wait… there weren’t any facts presented in this article.

      Seriously though, it’s interesting that James mentions Germany and Japan shutting down nuclear industries…

      Germany now burns the dirtiest of the dirty.. Brown Coal.. to generate their power shortfall, while Japan was forced to import massive amounts of fuel oil for theirs…

      As a typical NGO, James gives no rational, and more importantly..IMMEDIATE..alternative the power generation requirements of these two massively industrialised nations.

      But hey, who am I to argue, nuclear power is bad, it has to be, a movie told us so…

    • M says:

      07:32am | 07/08/12

      Where does the punch find these people?

    • Fiddler says:

      02:52pm | 07/08/12

      selling copies of the big issue or offering to wipe your windscreen at traffic lights I think

    • M says:

      03:59pm | 07/08/12

      Well, I suppose they have to get the loonies from somewhere. There’s only so many that our universities can produce/.

    • OSB says:

      06:06pm | 07/10/12

      @M I’m at Uni now, I’m left and I disagree with everything the green left says about nuclear! Also I’m studying as an engineer (Aero & Mech) and know that nuclear it the only current viable solution.

    • wakeuppls says:

      07:45am | 07/08/12

      Wow you must be a greenie. The hypocrisy is amusing. You claim that nuclear will never be safe but leftists like you also love to claim it is only a matter of time before green energy is actually useful. This is fairly prime evidence that you along with the rest of you progressives are only interested in satisfying your own precious utopian vision for the future, regardless of the consequences to developing and developed countries.

      As long as you feel like a hero afterwards, right? No matter how many people you starve because they lack access to cheap efficient energy?

    • TimB says:

      08:17am | 07/08/12

      I think if this article proves anything, it’s that rabid Greenies are nothing but a dangerous blight on modern civilization.

    • Squirrel says:

      08:30am | 07/08/12

      But James, It doesn’t matter if rogue states use nuclear power for evil instead of good because Batman will save us all.

    • TimR says:

      09:03am | 07/08/12

      Actually if batman taught us anything, its that a city needs the powerful elite to oppress the masses.

    • Anonymous says:

      09:17am | 07/08/12

      You’re looking too far into it. The nuclear bomb plot in the latest Batman was sloppy and was just a cheap way to generate tension and build for a trilogy-ending climax. Oh yeah, and suggesting that someone could turn a fusion generator into a nuclear bomb in around a minute after tinkering with the controls is unbelievably stupid. Now, with that out of the way…

      I don’t think I’ve ever been more offended by a closing paragraph well… ever. You might as well just have saved everyone the time and typed in all caps: “Nuclear Energy Bad!”.

      Here’s the kicker, James. You might not like it, but Nuclear Power is one of the cleanest and perhaps the most efficient sources of power in the world. Enriched uranium is hundreds of times more potent than coal, and Australia has one of the best deposits of it in the world. Waste can also be contained properly and stored in a small area.

      Also, let me just say: How dare you correlate Fukushima with Hiroshima. One disaster was the result of a tidal wave destroying a power plant. The other was the result of a NUCLEAR WARHEAD designed to kill as many people as possible. There’s a DIFFERENCE! YES, Nuclear Power is risky and carries a great responsibility, but that’s the amazing thing. Just because it has the potential to be used for evil, doesn’t mean it should be vilified by pseudo-intellectuals like yourself. If you think we should abandon it just because it’s difficult, then you’re a quitter.

      Nuclear Power can save this world. As an environmentalist, I say you’re not doing us, OR the world a favour. Peddlers of hysteria and fact-twisting like you make us look bad. You’re a disgrace.

    • Bertrand says:

      09:17am | 07/08/12

      Bane is an anarchist, not a neo-fascist. What is a neo-fascist anyway? (Hint: almost certainly not Bane).

    • AlbertLarusoo says:

      07:37pm | 07/08/12

      Agree with this.. He is really an anarchist. He is really crazy, out of imagination! Hopefully we are not having people like this. With big muscle and power….

      what is neo-fascist btw?lol

      AlbertLarusoo here

    • Tim the Toolman says:

      09:18am | 07/08/12

      Wow….pushing ideology based on interpreting the message in a hollywood film!  Who needs actual facts when you can talk about how a popular movie made you feel, and determine policy off that! 

      Now, I’m off to learn to play rock and roll and build a time travelling phone box, ‘caus that’s what Bill and Ted have taught me!  Station!

      Seriously?

    • Gregg says:

      09:19am | 07/08/12

      Perhaps we could have a movie about what life will be like with greatly reduced power availability, perhaps Lord Monckton and Al Gore being the equivalent of Batman and the Joker.

    • AdamC says:

      09:39am | 07/08/12

      This writer needs to Google the word ‘MacGuffin’ if he wants to better understand the role the nuclear industry played in The Dark Knight Rises. Indeed, the reliance on a MacGuffin (and a particularly implausible one at that) was the main thing that kept Nolan’s latest Batman film from reaching the same heights as its predecessor.

      The great tragedy of nuclear energy is the village-mob hysteria that seems to attach to it. Just as late medieval French peasants were wont to be convinced that werewolves and demons lived among them, it is depressingly easy for the media to whip people up into a frenzy over the invisible threat of the nuclear bogeyman.

      Indeed, it would seem more people have already died of suicidal despair at being prohibited from returning to their homes in Fukushima (despite the trivial risk of illness from radioactive fallout) than are ever likely to perish as a result of the meltdowns themselves.

    • Admiral Ackbar says:

      01:32pm | 07/08/12

      I didn’t see this comment AC before I typed mine out just now. This is exactly what I thought, the nuclear energy in the film is a plot device, not social commentary.

    • OSB says:

      06:27pm | 07/10/12

      And, to everyone who sites Fukushima as why we can’t have nuclear power think of this. For a plant that was built nearly 45 years ago from an American design that was not meant to be hit by tsunamis, it did pretty well if it took the combined hit of the largest ever recorded earthquake and a extremely large tsunami to take it down.

      All we have to worry about in Australia is a lack of Deuterium-Oxide and Tritium-Oxide (Heavy water, [2H]2-O and [3H]2-O respectively). I’m still surprised this debate is still going since we have a reactor in Sydney that has not had a minor disturbance (e.g. someone dropped a bottle of bleach), let alone an accident.

    • Zeta says:

      09:58am | 07/08/12

      I’m pretty sure the movie was really about a single person taking on a city’s collective responsibility and how the net result of fighting anarchy with anarchy is more anarchy.

      That’s the whole point of the series. It’s not about nuclear power, or the surveilance state, or as US pundits on both sides keep saying, the Occupy movement.

      Instead of doing what most superhero movies do, which is take one aspect of comic book mythology and blow it out to a 16:9 aspect ratio, Nolan dares to ask a question without letting the comics answer it for him - what would happen if one of the world’s richest men decided to dress up as a bat and fight crime?

      Batman Begins was written at a time when America stepped outside the law to take revenge, and that post 9/11ness bleeds through the rest of the films. The only reason Bane has a nuclear weapon in The Dark Knight Rises is because in The Dark Knight, the Joker just had boats full of explosives. The whole series has been about escalation. Bruce Wayne dresses up as a Bat, so someone dresses up as a playing card, so cat burglers start dressing as cats - Bane says it himself in the final movie, about how no one noticed him until he started wearing the mask. Bane exists, just like the Joker, because Bruce Wayne put on his mask. Ultimately, Bruce Wayne is responsible for everything that happens to Gotham City in the the three movies.

      There’s no deeper subtext about nuclear energy there. The writers just needed a plot device that represented a bigger threat than they had in the last movie.

    • St. Michael says:

      11:56am | 07/08/12

      “Nolan not only fesses up to the corruption at the heart of the otherwise civilized veneer of modern liberal Democracy…”

      This is funny, if the suggestion is that Selina Kyle’s little “Occupy” speech to Bruce Wayne was fessing up to the corruption at the heart of the civilised veneer of modern democracy.  Were you not the least bit unsettled by people being dragged out of their homes and put on show trials in scenes right out of the French Revolution? Or did you not sense that Nolan was dropping a rather heavy anvil on the idea of the “Les Miserables” revolution being anything other than bloody, unjust, and oppressive?

      “The movie is successful in implanting in the minds of audiences the intrinsic and well-proven connections between nuclear bombs and nuclear power.”

      Yyyyeah, little pointer on that: a fusion reactor, in the film, as opposed to a fission reactor, can’t actually be made into a bomb.  At all.  And the fusion reactor was portrayed as a complete, beneficial, clean energy solution to the planet’s issues, which it is in real life, too.  Only morons like yourself think that the movie was against nuclear power.  All it was against was supercriminals wearing dodgy masks getting hold of power sources and then using handwavium to turn them into plot devices.

    • Tim the Toolman says:

      12:40pm | 07/08/12

      Handwavium…I like it smile  Perhaps they’ll be mining it in Avatar 2, after running out of Unobtanium?

    • St. Michael says:

      01:16pm | 07/08/12

      Well, assuming the prospecting for MacGuffinite doesn’t turn up anything. wink

    • Daylight Robbery says:

      12:42pm | 07/08/12

      The world has over 1000 nuclear reactors

      Chernobyl was a grotesque lapse of risk management; if the same lapse was applied to the Burrup Penninsula in Western Australia we could blow up an area the size of Melbourne taking all with it.

      Japan built their nuclear power stations on a fault which produced one of the biggest earthquakes and tsunamis ever occured in modern civilisation.  But wait, again now collusion and corruption have surfaced in the maintenance of these old run down nuclear power plants which wouldnt of happened if protocol hadnt been neglected.

      But its too late, dont even bother with these conversations. We have only about 30 years of uranium left globally. 

      By the time Australia builds a beautiful ‘modern’ power station in one of the most stable continents on earth with strict safety guidelines that can produce hydrogen fuel as a byproduct and burn down existing nuclear waste the world will have little left making nuclear an expensive option.

      Dont let the Gilalrd and the Greens make you feel guilty about having one of the highest CO2 emmission per head of captial in an industrial nation.  Everyone elase has nuclear power stations thats why.

      The Greens didnt want nuclear power and now they are making you pay a tax for the continuation of the use of coal.
      Not only that, now modern factories are being built overseas where you jobs are being shifted overseas along with lower emmisions due tot he carbontax.

      Thousands of people have suffered respitory demise from the coal emmisions in the mean timeunder Gillard and Greens policy

      Epic fail

    • M says:

      01:00pm | 07/08/12

      The greens are surprisingly good at this sending us back to the stone age biz aren’t they?

    • Daylight Robbery says:

      12:50pm | 07/08/12

      The world has over 1000 nuclear reactors

      Chernobyl was a grotesque lapse of risk management; if the same lapse was applied to the Burrup Penninsula in Western Australia we could blow up an area the size of Melbourne taking all with it.

      Wind is suited to some of our smaller isolated towns but by gees its expensive for anything else.

      Japan built their nuclear power stations on a fault which produced one of the biggest earthquakes and tsunamis ever occured in modern civilisation.  But wait, again now collusion and corruption have surfaced in the maintenance of these old run down nuclear power plants which wouldnt of happened if protocol hadnt been neglected.

      But its too late, dont even bother with these conversations. We have only about 30 years of uranium left globally. 

      By the time Australia builds a beautiful ‘modern’ power station in one of the most stable continents on earth with strict safety guidelines that can produce hydrogen fuel as a byproduct and burn down existing nuclear waste the world will have little left making nuclear an expensive option.

      Dont let the Gilalrd and the Greens make you feel guilty about having one of the highest CO2 emmission per head of captial in an industrial nation.  Everyone elase has nuclear power stations thats why.

      The Greens didnt want nuclear power and now they are making you pay a tax for the continuation of the use of coal.
      Not only that, now modern factories are being built overseas where you jobs are being shifted overseas along with lower emmisions due tot he carbontax.

      Thousands of people have suffered respitory demise from the coal emmisions in the mean timeunder Gillard and Greens policy

      Epic fail

    • Jamesman says:

      01:04pm | 07/08/12

      Neo-fascist?
      Neo-fascist? He is clearly a tyrant, but not fascist, neo or otherwise. The way he convinces the populous is very socialist. His desire to inflict his ideology on the world at whatever expense is ironically reminiscent of communism inflicting poverty, corruption and suppression of free speech (in order to combat those things).
      Just because Hitler and Mussolini were fascists doesn’t mean it’s a bad thing (though it is).
      Just because Stalin and Mao were communists doesn’t make it a bad thing (though it is).
      Perhaps I wasn’t paying attention to the parts of the movie where he displays his fascism? Or perhaps you correct yourself further on in the article in between trying to assign morality to technology, and pushing your agenda (under the guise of warning us of an agenda?) Perhaps though, you are using a word ignorantly, and putting neo in front of it. 
      If you don’t know what a word means, don’t use it.

    • wakeuppls says:

      01:58pm | 07/08/12

      This is the first article I can remember where literally everyone except acotrel agrees on its poor quality.

    • M says:

      02:35pm | 07/08/12

      What’s that? A rabid leftie ageeing with a rabid leftie? Say it isn’t so…

    • Yuri says:

      04:14pm | 07/08/12

      There was actually another article (possibly by the same author) earlier this year, which acotrel didn’t comment on. There were over 100 comments and every single one tore the article’s arguments to shreds. From memory it was about how Fukishima was a ‘nuclear disaster’.

    • Alex says:

      02:23pm | 07/08/12

      There are already enough nuclear weapons to kill all humans on earth and most other species a thousand times over.
      The major powers will never give them up, opposing modern and safe nuclear energy becuase weapons is just a little silly.
      Your argument is spurious.

    • M says:

      02:47pm | 07/08/12

      He knows that, he just keeps parroting it because eventually it’ll lead us back to the age of horse and cart, which seems to be the greens’ primary motive rather than any concerns about the environment.

    • Alex says:

      02:25pm | 07/08/12

      Microwave technology has already been weaponised, going to ban 1 minute buritos now.

    • bananabender says:

      02:43pm | 07/08/12

      Germany is building 53 coal-fired power sations to replace their mothballed nuclear reactors.  They are also reducing subsidies for renewables. So much for green energy repalcing nuclear.

    • James1 says:

      04:35pm | 07/08/12

      Iran has not proliferated, because it has no nuclear weapons.  At least try and get your basic facts right.

    • Jon says:

      06:35pm | 07/08/12

      James 1, but the Mad Mullah’ s are trying. So we should be on our guard.

    • Don says:

      05:14pm | 07/08/12

      Every day the Left wing are getting more desperate in their arguments against nuclear power…. Anyone notice? Jim Green, Ian Lowe, Helen Caldicott, Scott Ludlam and now James Norman all using outdated facts or outright lies.

      But the nuclear debate hasn’t heated up recently, has it? It seems one-sided. Until you dig a little deaper.

      Recent Government commissioned reports have started to show nuclear power is the cheapest, fastest and most effective way of getting rid of coal. Many of the Lefty arguments used to point to Germany as an example of how renewables can replace nuclear and fossil-fuels.

      Lately Germany has relised some real delemas: there electricity is costing way too much (people freezing), they are needing to build NEW coal/gas fired power stations to replace the nuclear they want to shut down, and their whole grid is entirely unreliable and needs support from nuclear countries like France.

      That’s why we are seeing so many anti-nuke dinosaurs come out of the wood-work. They were wrong.

    • bananabender says:

      06:41pm | 08/08/12

      Ian Lowe was trained as a nuclear physicist. He is strongly PRO-NUCLEAR.

    • Timinane says:

      06:44pm | 07/08/12

      First off Bane was a crusader wanting to destroy Gotham for it’s sins. It’s an extension of the them from the first movie in the trilogy which introduced Ra’s al Ghul who was the father of the brains behind Bane. (sorry spoilers)

      Fusion bombs already exist and also we wouldn’t be alive if a fusion reaction wasn’t the source of all our power *points to the sun* Magnetic field and Ozone layer are at least 2 things I know that protects us from it’s harmful effects. Yes radioactvity is harmful, a Helium nucleus, electron and gamma rays aka Alpha, Beta and Gamma radiation. But we absorb a lot of it already. One thing I’d like to point out is all things going boom is bad be it Trinitrotoulene, or nuclear it’s not nice when things go boom around humans. But if you can find a better more energy efficent way to move electrons around a metal circuit so that we can argue this on computers then we can speak.

      Meanwhile I take a different view on the batman movie which inspires me to help my fellow man despite not liking them too much, you guys don’t think much.

    • Richard says:

      12:10pm | 17/08/12

      This article contains so many errors on a science level that I don’t know where I should even begin commenting .....

      Plutonium, uranium, what does this have to do with the movie? In the movie we’re talking about a nuclear fusion device and not about fission. Plutonium, uranium, etc. (heavy elements) are not used for fusion (heavy elements need to be split in smaller ones to generate energy (fission), whereas small elements need to be fused together in heavier ones to create energy (fusion)), so this argument is completely irrelevant. An important thing anyone who makes any remarks about nuclear energy or nuclear bombs should understand that there are 2 varieties: fusion and fission. In the movie fusion was used, not fission. Of course anyone can have their own opinions, but these opinions (for example quite a large portion of the author’s opinions) are simply false if they can be overruled with facts (or science). That’s why it is wise for people to not meddle with stuff they don’t even have the slightest clue about.

      Fission is the power behind nuclear generators and atomic bombs: it leaves radioactive waste and can be compared with a chain reaction that needs to be controlled constantly. Although we can do this control easily nowadays, I can imagine people (I personally am not a fan of fission either), prefer not to have this kind of technology.

      Fusion is seen as the holy grail of the energy production. It is clean, does barely cause any waste or radiation, its fuel is abundant (water) and it generates alot of energy. The only problem is that is is scientifically and on an engineering scale very hard to do, since fusion is, in contrast to fission which is like a bomb that needs to be controlled constantly, like an incredibly weak flame that needs to be controlled constantly otherwise the reaction simply stops (and nothing happens). If we manage to do this on earth (expected time is in 50 - 100 years), all the energy problems and global warming are solved in one blow.

      Although the movie was entertaining, its science was incredibly bad, since you can never turn a fusion reactor into a bomb (because it’s so damn hard to keep fusion going). The sad thing about this is that some people, like the author of this article, simply believe in movie science without doing some research on their own. Hence people can adopt wrong and misleading views of nuclear fusion: something which is not beneficial for our society. Fusion is probably the only thing that even has a slight chance of obtaining enough energy for the growing population in third world countries who are becoming more developed by the end of our century. If fusion is not working by 2100, chances are great that our civilisation will fall and anarchy, poverty, hunger and war will run the world. That’s why it is so sad that something as movie science, or articles written by authors who do not even have the slightest comprehension of the matter he/she is writing about, can lead to such devastating misleading views.

      - A nuclear physicist, proudly working in the field of nuclear fusion energy research (trying to save the world bla bla ;p)

 

Facebook Recommendations

Read all about it

Punch live

Up to the minute Twitter chatter

Recent posts

The latest and greatest

The Punch is moving house

The Punch is moving house

Good morning Punchers. After four years of excellent fun and great conversation, this is the final post…

Will Pope Francis have the vision to tackle this?

Will Pope Francis have the vision to tackle this?

I have had some close calls, one that involved what looked to me like an AK47 pointed my way, followed…

Advocating risk management is not “victim blaming”

Advocating risk management is not “victim blaming”

In a world in which there are still people who subscribe to the vile notion that certain victims of sexual…

Nosebleed Section

choice ringside rantings

From: Hasbro, go straight to gaol, do not pass go

Tim says:

They should update other things in the game too. Instead of a get out of jail free card, they should have a Dodgy Lawyer card that not only gets you out of jail straight away but also gives you a fat payout in compensation for daring to arrest you in the first place. Instead of getting a hotel when you… [read more]

From: A guide to summer festivals especially if you wouldn’t go

Kel says:

If you want a festival for older people or for families alike, get amongst the respectable punters at Bluesfest. A truly amazing festival experience to be had of ALL AGES. And all the young "festivalgoers" usually write themselves off on the first night, only to never hear from them again the rest of… [read more]

Gentle jabs to the ribs

Superman needs saving

Superman needs saving

Can somebody please save Superman? He seems to be going through a bit of a crisis. Eighteen months ago,… Read more

28 comments

Newsletter

Read all about it

Sign up to the free News.com.au newsletter