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aries1988 : disaster   51

Letter of Recommendation Offgrid’s ‘What If
A prepper magazine that will make you appreciate what you have.
disaster  survive  nuclear  daily  magazine  imagination  hijack 
8 weeks ago by aries1988
taiping  1860s  qing  jiangsu  zhejiang  hangzhou  region  stereotype  hate  flooding  disaster  survive 
8 weeks ago by aries1988
What Happens When a Bad-Tempered, Distractible Doofus Runs an Empire? | The New Yorker

About a decade ago, I published “George, Nicholas and Wilhelm: Three Royal Cousins and the Road to World War I,” a book that was, in part, about Kaiser Wilhelm, who is probably best known for being Queen Victoria’s first grandchild and for leading Germany into the First World War. Ever since Donald Trump started campaigning for President, the Kaiser has once again been on my mind—his personal failings, and the global fallout they led to.

Wilhelm’s touchiness, his unpredictability, his need to be acknowledged: these things struck a chord with elements in Germany, which was in a kind of adolescent spasm—quick to perceive slights, excited by the idea of flexing its muscles, filled with a sense of entitlement.
deutschland  history  ww1  leader  personality  disaster  war  book  trump 
november 2018 by aries1988





qing  diplomacy  disaster  deutschland  history  1890s  shandong 
september 2018 by aries1988
Is Japanese Culture Traumatized By Centuries of Natural Disaster? - Facts So Romantic - Nautilus
The stress of social interaction has caused a flight from human intimacy. You cannot open your mouth to say a word without considering your relationship with the people around you—your place in the hierarchy. And if you say something wrong you risk grievously offending people.
society  psychology  disaster  japan 
may 2018 by aries1988
Who Killed More: Hitler, Stalin, or Mao? | by Ian Johnson | NYR Daily | The New York Review of Books

Their most prominent spokesperson is Sun Jingxian, a mathematician at Shandong University and Jiangsu Normal University. He attributes changes in China’s population during this period as due to faulty statistics, changes in how households were registered, and a series of other obfuscatory factors. His conclusion: famine killed only 3.66 million people. This contradicts almost every other serious effort at accounting for the effects of Mao’s changes.

According to Chang, Mao was responsible for 70 million deaths in peacetime—more than any other twentieth-century leader.

The peacetime adjective is significant because it gets Hitler out of the picture. But is starting a war of aggression less of a crime than launching economic policies that cause a famine?

How, finally, does Mao’s record compare to those of Hitler or Stalin? Snyder estimates that Hitler was responsible for between 11 million and 12 million noncombatant deaths, while Stalin was responsible for at least 6 million, and as many as 9 million if foreseeable deaths caused by deportation, starvation, and incarceration in concentration camps are included.

If one includes the combatant deaths, and the deaths due to war-related famine and disease, the numbers shoot up astronomically. The Soviet Union suffered upward of 8 million combatant deaths and many more due to famine and disease—perhaps about 20 million.

As for Hitler, should his deaths include the hundreds of thousands who died in the aerial bombardments of Germans cities? After all, it was his decision to strip German cities of anti-aircraft batteries to replace lost artillery following the debacle at Stalingrad.

Mao didn’t order people to their deaths in the same way that Hitler did, so it’s fair to say that Mao’s famine deaths were not genocide—in contrast, arguably, to Stalin’s Holodomor in the Ukraine, the terror-famine described by journalist and historian Anne Applebaum in Red Famine (2017). One can argue that by closing down discussion in 1959, Mao sealed the fate of tens of millions, but almost every legal system in the world recognizes the difference between murder in the first degree and manslaughter or negligence. Shouldn’t the same standards apply to dictators?

By contrast, Mao himself and his successors have always realized that he was both China’s Lenin and its Stalin.

In Xi’s way of looking at China, the country had roughly thirty years of Maoism and thirty years of Deng Xiaoping’s economic liberalization and rapid growth. Xi has warned that neither era can negate the other; they are inseparable.
comparison  dictator  leader  china  soviet  nazi  history  today  death  disaster  famine  numbers  research  narrative  mao  debate  ethic 
february 2018 by aries1988
Switzerland is Prepared for Civilizational Collapse - Marginal REVOLUTION
More than any other country, Switzerland’s ethos is centered around preparing for civilizational collapse. All around Switzerland, for example, one can find thousands of water fountains fed by natural springs. Zurich is famous for its 1200 fountains, some of them […]
swiss  civ  disaster  survive 
february 2018 by aries1988
Japan: the next big quake
The government’s figures put the odds of a magnitude 8.0-plus Nankai Trough earthquake at 50 per cent in the next 20 years, 70 per cent in the next 30 years and 90 per cent in the next half century.

In the worst case of a magnitude 9.0 quake, close to land, Tokyo puts losses at ¥220tn ($2tn) for the first year alone. The amount is hard to imagine: 40 per cent of Japan’s GDP, equal to the market capitalisation of Apple, Microsoft, Berkshire Hathaway, ExxonMobil and Facebook combined. Around three-quarters of that is property damage, most of it privately owned, and the rest is lost economic activity.

The worst fatality rates in Tohoku towns were about 10 per cent, whereas historic records suggest fatality rates of half or two-thirds for unprepared fishing villages after a similar tsunami in 1896. In total, 97 per cent of people in the Tohoku inundation area survived.

That reflects the benefits of engineering, early warning and evacuation.
japan  gis  government  planning  disaster  state  policy  manufacturing  infographics  earthquake 
october 2017 by aries1988
Analysis | We have a pretty good idea of when humans will go extinct

That radical notion — that we are not, in fact, at the center of the universe — gives rise to what modern scientists call the Copernican Principle: We are not privileged observers of the world around us. We don't occupy a unique place in the universe. We are profoundly ordinary. We are not special.

Assuming that you and I are not so special as to be born at either the dawn of a very long-lasting human civilization or the twilight years of a short-lived one, we can apply Gott's 95 percent confidence formula to arrive at an estimate of when the human race will go extinct: between 5,100 and 7.8 million years from now.
probability  fun  example  human  disaster  berlin  future  prediction  earth  question 
october 2017 by aries1988
Red Famine by Anne Applebaum — enemies of the people
The famine was an instrument of targeted mass murder. As peasants were dying in the countryside, Stalin launched a brutal attack on the Ukrainian national idea itself. Since the 19th century, Moscow had been hostile towards national groups that challenged the unity of the Russian empire. In Ukraine, the Romanovs embarked upon a programme of accelerated Russification, suppressing local languages, gutting civil society, and depositing outsiders from remote parts of the empire into Ukraine’s towns and cities. Stalin’s “War on Ukraine” was the violent continuum of this quest for hegemony in Europe’s bloodlands. Along with the peasantry, it was directed at intellectuals, politicians, writers, priests and public officials — agents of the nation’s moral and political order.
book  russia  europe  history  1930s  disaster  politics  communism  death  debate 
october 2017 by aries1988
A Murderous History of Korea

Kim’s reputation was inadvertently enhanced by the Japanese, whose newspapers made a splash of the battle between him and the Korean quislings whom the Japanese employed to track down and kill him, all operating under the command of General Nozoe Shotoku, who ran the Imperial Army’s ‘Special Kim Division’.

A vital figure in the long Japanese counterinsurgency effort was Kishi Nobusuke, who made a name for himself running munitions factories. Labelled a Class A war criminal during the US occupation, Kishi avoided incarceration and became one of the founding fathers of postwar Japan and its longtime ruling organ, the Liberal Democratic Party; he was prime minister twice between 1957 and 1960.

Kim Il-sung and Kishi are meeting again through their grandsons. Eight decades have passed, and the baleful, irreconcilable hostility between North Korea and Japan still hangs in the air.

The demonisation of North Korea transcends party lines, drawing on a host of subliminal racist and Orientalist imagery; no one is willing to accept that North Koreans may have valid reasons for not accepting the American definition of reality.

Congress and the American people knew nothing about this. Several of the planners were Japanophiles who had never challenged Japan’s colonial claims in Korea and now hoped to reconstruct a peaceable and amenable postwar Japan.

They worried that a Soviet occupation of Korea would thwart that goal and harm the postwar security of the Pacific.

it was no surprise that after a series of South Korean incursions into the North, full-scale civil war broke out on 25 June 1950.

South Korea’s stable democracy and vibrant economy from 1988 onwards seem to have overridden any need to acknowledge the previous forty years of history, during which the North could reasonably claim that its own autocracy was necessary to counter military rule in Seoul. It’s only in the present context that the North looks at best like a walking anachronism, at worst like a vicious tyranny.
war  korea  origin  disaster  nuclear  usa  explained  instapaper_favs 
september 2017 by aries1988
Armageddon architecture: upmarket bunkers for the worried wealthy
The latest real estate trend among internet billionaires and hedge fund tycoons is, apparently, buying bunkers. These individuals, who have made fortunes by disrupting the present, predicting the future and then making that future happen through trades, algorithms and tech innovations, are preparing for the end of civilisation.

This new group of tech-savvy survivalists prefers the name “preppers”. It implies something preppier than the redneck gun-nuts in battered pick-ups with whom they might otherwise be confused.

The “Penthouse” units, comprising 3,600 sq ft of living space spread over two storeys, start from $4.5m. LED screens offer a window on to a fantasy outside world of trees and waterfalls (not the actual, frazzled and burnt-out landscape). The communal facilities include a climbing wall, dog park, pool, cinema and shooting range (of course). They also provide hydroponic and aquaponic agriculture and aquaculture, and the machinery to filter air and water indefinitely. These are bunkers for the long haul: five years or more completely off-grid.
architecture  survive  disaster  rich 
april 2017 by aries1988
I will survive

Survivalism has a long history in America. The early settlers were survivalists, though they did not use the term. They built their own houses, grew their own food and filled their stores with whatever supplies they could, knowing that failure to do so might be fatal. The pioneers who trekked out West in the 19th century expected to meet hardship and danger. Those who went well armed and well prepared were more likely to survive.

Roughly four in ten expect Jesus to return by 2050, and although the Book of Revelation is hardly crystal clear about the details, many think the Second Coming will be preceded by a Great Tribulation involving earthquakes, floods, famine, the rise of the Antichrist and the death of most of humanity.

To keep inventories low and cut costs, companies have come to rely on just-in-time delivery. If a disaster were to disrupt all this, people could quickly find themselves without diabetes drugs, oxygen for respirators and spare parts for more or less everything.
disaster  interview  home  diy  survive  american 
january 2017 by aries1988
Aberfan - 50 years on

It was a normal October day for a small mining village, where it had been raining for what seemed like forever
story  disaster  children  school  wales  death  comparison  coal  mining  accident  closure  ptsd  family  tragedy 
october 2016 by aries1988
‘I Have No Choice but to Keep Looking’
Five years after the tsunami that killed tens of thousands in Japan, a husband still searches the sea for his wife, joined by a father hoping to find his daughter.

For his first dive, he reached a depth of 16 feet. He had expected silence, but the ocean had a sound. Takamatsu called it chirichiri — the sound of hair burning or a snake hissing. Takahashi instructed him not to touch the bottom with his hands or fins because he might kick up a disorienting cloud of sand. Takamatsu kept his head down and flippers up.

The search for love, the search — his, hers, everyone’s — is not for a needle in a haystack, nor a fish in the sea. It’s for a specific person on earth. The world never looks as big as when someone is lost.
death  disaster  japan  love  search 
august 2016 by aries1988
Scientists Confirm China's Legendary Ancient Flood Was Real
Around 4000 years ago, an earthquake rumbled through central China, creating a massive landslide in deep, narrow valley with rocky, steep sides. That landslide corked up the gorge, forming a pyramid-like dam of rock and dirt that blocked the Yellow River. Wu's team believes that for somewhere between 6 to 9 months, that dam held. As the riverbed downstream turned dry, a tenuous lake of 4 cubic miles of water—half the size of Lake Mead behind the Hoover Dam—was growing.

But, as the rising lakewater eventually spilled over the new dam, it wasn't just a trickle. The whole thing broke, releasing a horrific torrent of destruction. "It's among the largest known floods to have happened on earth during the past 10,000 years. And it's more than 500 times larger than a flood we might expect on the Yellow River from a massive rainfall," says Darryl Granger—a geologist at Purdue University in Lafayette, Indiana—with the research team.
geology  earth  china  history  discovery  disaster 
august 2016 by aries1988
What About the Bombing of Nagasaki? - The New Yorker
Kyoto, Hiroshima, Yokohama, and Kokura were the first four targets chosen, with Niigata as a runner-up.

Given the plane’s mechanical problems, the crew were close to the point at which they would have to turn back or risk ditching. To have any hope of making it to a friendly airbase they would likely have had to drop the Fat Man into the ocean. “Less than two hours of fuel left,” one of the pilots wrote in his mission diary. “Wonder if the Pacific will be cold?”

After Hiroshima, now that the bomb was no longer a secret, the Army Air Forces had drafted propaganda leaflets to inform the people of Nagasaki about the possible coming shock—as much an act of psychological warfare as a humanitarian warning. But internal coördination with the bombing crews was so poor that the leaflets were delivered late. They fluttered down over the city the day after the Fat Man went off.

The day after Nagasaki, Truman issued his first affirmative command regarding the bomb: no more strikes without his express authorization. He never issued the order to drop the bombs, but he did issue the order to stop dropping them. Even if Hiroshima remains preëminent in our historical memory—the first nuclear weapon used in anger—Nagasaki may be of greater consequence in the long run, something more than the second attack. Perhaps it will be the last.
reportage  weapon  disaster  1945  nuclear  history  anniversary 
may 2016 by aries1988
The Cultural Revolution: A People’s History 1962-1976 by Frank Dikötter – review
Mao Zedong’s Cultural Revolution also had a darker side. It was necessary to destroy the bourgeois past, and this involved the wholesale looting of shrines, the destruction of books and parchment, the smashing of ornaments and the pillaging of homes belonging to the wealthy.
mao  1960s  china  disaster  culture  book 
may 2016 by aries1988
In Tsunami's Wake, a Japanese Family Drifts Apart
In the five years after the devastating earthquake and tsunami, Hiroko Masuike has followed the Sato family, whose members drifted apart as they struggled to recover and rebuild.
japanese  story  disaster 
march 2016 by aries1988
Post-Katrina, Vietnamese Success
First-generation Vietnamese in New Orleans also score better on measures of general health than do their counterparts in Vietnam. Because of the forces of selection underlying migration, the Vietnamese in America are not representative of the Vietnamese overall — challenging the idea of some shared cultural superiority.

A sense of collective perseverance, forged in the experiences of fleeing North Vietnam in 1954 and South Vietnam in 1975; an insular outlook of self-sufficiency, rooted in experience with an untrustworthy government; and a comfort with hierarchy, drawn from Confucian ideals (as well as from the Roman Catholic Church, to which many Vietnamese in New Orleans belong) — all these things contributed to the community’s ability to rebuild with grit, self-reliance and efficiency.
disaster  vietnam  comparison  story  usa 
august 2015 by aries1988
Of a hundred and fifty doctors in the city, sixty-five were already dead and most of the rest were wounded. Of 1,780 nurses, 1,654 were dead or too badly hurt to work. In the biggest hospital, that of the Red Cross, only six doctors out of thirty were able to function, and only ten nurses out of more than two hundred.

Hiroshima ... had been an inviting target—mainly because it had been one of the most important military-command and communications centers in Japan, and would have become the Imperial headquarters had the islands been invaded and Tokyo been captured.

As for the use of the bomb, she would say, “It was war and we had to expect it.” And then she would add, “Shikata ga nai,” a Japanese expression as common as, and corresponding to, the Russian word “nichevo”: “It can’t be helped. Oh, well. Too bad.” Dr. Fujii said approximately the same thing about the use of the bomb to Father Kleinsorge one evening, in German: “Da ist nichts zu machen. There’s nothing to be done about it.”
reportage  ww2  japan  japanese  disaster  religion  death  history  instapaper_favs 
august 2015 by aries1988
Taming the Flood
In August 1975, Typhoon Nina, one of the most powerful tropical storms on record, surged inland from the Taiwan Strait, causing floods so catastrophic they…
news  propaganda  comparison  press  china  disaster 
july 2015 by aries1988
The Earthquake That Will Devastate Seattle
The first sign that the Cascadia earthquake has begun will be a compressional wave, radiating outward from the fault line. Compressional waves are fast-moving, high-frequency waves, audible to dogs and certain other animals but experienced by humans only as a sudden jolt.

When that tsunami is coming, you run, Jay Wilson, the chair of the Oregon Seismic Safety Policy Advisory Commission (OSSPAC), says. You protect yourself, you don’t turn around, you don’t go back to save anybody. You run for your life.

A grown man is knocked over by ankle-deep water moving at 6.7 miles an hour.

The brevity of our lives breeds a kind of temporal parochialism—an ignorance of or an indifference to those planetary gears which turn more slowly than our own.
2015  future  earthquake  usa  tsunami  explained  disaster 
july 2015 by aries1988
Catastrophic Chinese floods triggered by air pollution
Fan worries that such effects are not being taken into account in weather forecasting. In China, for example, she notices that forecasts often give the wrong area for thunderstorms, which are likely to be downwind of where expected. Such forecasts also get the intensity “worryingly wrong,” she says.
pollution  meteo  china  model  disaster 
july 2015 by aries1988
How to crack improbability and win the lottery – David Hand – Aeon
This distinction – between the chance that you (or, indeed, any other particular person) will win the lottery and that someone will win – is a manifestation of what I call the law of truly large numbers. If a large enough number of people each buy a lottery ticket, then the probability that someone will win becomes substantial. It grows so large, indeed, that someone wins almost every week.

If you win the lottery one week with a one-in-14-million chance per ticket, then your chances of winning it the next week are unaltered. Statisticians say that the two events are independent, but another way to put it is that the lottery numbers don’t remember who has won previously: the outcome of one draw doesn’t affect the following one.

The same does not hold for the Titanic. For if one compartment is damaged so that it floods, what does that say about the probability that a neighbouring compartment might also be damaged? Well, clearly our answer depends how the damage occurs. As it happens, the Titanic’s maiden voyage was through iceberg-infested waters. If an iceberg were to strike the side of the ship penetrating the double hull, isn’t there a good chance that it would also damage neighbouring compartments?

We live in a complex world, and the different components of a system are often locked in a web of interconnections that are difficult to tease apart. When trying to make sense of them, it is common to assume independence as a first approximation. But this can lead to major miscalculations. The Yale sociologist Charles Perrow has developed an entire theory of what he calls ‘normal accidents’, based on the observation that complex systems should be expected to have complex, undetected, interactions. A frightening thought.
probability  maths  science  explained  disaster 
june 2014 by aries1988
reportage  earthquake  sichuan  disaster 
may 2013 by aries1988
Nuclear workers in Japan: Heroism and humility | The Economist
Meet the “Fukushima 50”, the men on the front line of the nuclear disaster

Yet this sense of duty masks some very human aspects to the drama. Four out of five people at the site were locals. They laboured under fears that their families may have been washed away by the tsunami. They also knew that the rising radiation endangered their own villages, which they were desperate to prevent. They knew each other intimately from years of working together. That kept them going.
japan  disaster  hero  story 
november 2012 by aries1988
googlereader  disaster  earthquake  system  china 
september 2012 by aries1988
美国《自然灾害》(Natural Hazards)杂志刊载的一份最新研究报告指出,上海是全球9大沿海城市中面对严重洪灾时最脆弱的城市。

googlereader  disaster 
august 2012 by aries1988
A Model Disaster
Have engineers learned anything from the loss of the unsinkable Titanic? Will they ever?
engineering  disaster  future 
august 2012 by aries1988
地震预警不是预报,它是与地震横波赛跑的系统,为地上的人争取数秒的逃生时间。 一个海归博士后,一个民间研究所,五百多个体验者以身试震,65次预警弹无虚发,是否可以创造中国地震预警的奇迹?
disaster  forecast  debate 
august 2012 by aries1988
Japan’s 3/11
When the time came for Japan to stop in remembrance, there was not one moment of silence but two: The first, at 2:46 P.M., when the biggest quake in the nation’s history struck one year ago. And then the second: In tiny towns up and down the coast, they paused again, exactly thirty-three minutes later, to mark the moment when the tsunami arrived.
report  japan  disaster 
august 2012 by aries1988
report  disaster  china 
june 2011 by aries1988
japan  disaster  zeitgeist 
march 2011 by aries1988
japan  disaster 
march 2011 by aries1988
日本人终于开始表现得像 “正常”人了。
japan  zeitgeist  disaster 
march 2011 by aries1988
Sympathy for Japan, and Admiration
I find something noble and courageous in Japan’s resilience and perseverance, and it will be on display in the coming days. This will also be a time when the tight knit of Japan’s social fabric, its toughness and resilience, shine through. And my hunch is that the Japanese will, by and large, work together — something of a contrast to the polarization and bickering and dog-eat-dog model of politics now on display from Wisconsin to Washington. So maybe we can learn just a little bit from Japan. In short, our hearts go out to Japan, and we extend our deepest sympathy for the tragic quake. But also, our deepest admiration.
japan  model  zeitgeist  disaster  people  future 
march 2011 by aries1988

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