Full Body Burden: Memoir about family secrets, government secrets, and the risks of industrial pollution

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22 Responses to “Full Body Burden: Memoir about family secrets, government secrets, and the risks of industrial pollution”

  1. Mitchell Glaser says:

    Somewhere in America there are people working at factories assembling guns and bombs and death machines without even the poor excuse of defending our country. These people scare me. They are more concerned about having a job than they are about aiding some tin-pot dictator in pouring liquid fire on his own countrymen. What would these people not do? A lot of them go to church, some of them even vote. How am I supposed to act when I meet them at Disneyland, or Las Vegas?

  2. mtdna says:

    What the heck’s Tom Arnold doing with that Plutonium!?

  3. anansi133 says:

     There’s a lot of community out there for people recovering from dysfunctional parents. Growing up under a dysfunctional government is a similar kind of wound, but it’s not so easy to escape that particular dynamic…

  4. farcedude says:

    I used to live in Golden and work in Boulder a couple years back, requiring a commute along the western edge of Rocky Flats. I’m still amazed when I see the development that’s creeping in from the South and East – when your deed includes a stipulation that you aren’t allowed to have a garden, do you think there might be something bad for you in the topsoil?

  5. Scott Elyard says:

    Plutonium looks sort of looks like a rice cake.

  6. MadRat says:

    People like to think of radiation and anything that emits it as the most terrifying, world destroying substances in existence.  While radiation is bad, non-radioactive chemicals are just as bad.  I guess we don’t worry about chemicals because they’re laying around our house and we see them all the time.  Rockwell let a way too much plutonium get into the environment and yes that’s a very bad thing.  But let’s also remember that Rockwell used the pretexts of secrecy and national security to do things like allowing giant ponds of chemicals like toluene, acetone and benzene to just evaporate into the air, as just one example.  There’s a reason why we have an Environmental Protection Agency with laws to keep chemicals out of the environment.  If you go to the Wikipedia article ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rocky_Flats ) and look at the picture of Rocky Flats, you can see the black ponds on the right side about half way down the picture.

    I’m looking forward to reading this book.

    • scav says:

      Er…just a suggestion, but maybe substitute the phrase “toxic chemicals” for the word “chemicals” throughout your post?

      • Jerril says:

         Yeah, the basic post is relatively coherent, but the “dihydrogen monoxide poisoning” overtone is very distracting.

  7. ImmutableMichael says:

    I’ll check this out and I’ll try real hard not to compare it too the quality of the review, because by comparison it’s going to have to be damn good. Beautifully written review; science articulated, humanity retained and clarity at the fore. Nice.

  8. AnthonyC says:

    I agree with the metaphor of children growing up, but we’re not adults yet. We’re still adolescents, with poor executive function and poor long-term planning skills as a civilization.

  9. Eric Garner says:

    “Making a Real Killing” : 
    http://www.amazon.com/Making-Real-Killing-Rocky-Nuclear/dp/0826327982 is a pretty great book about the history and problems at rocky flats. If Hanford is more your thing read  “On the Home Front”:  
    http://www.amazon.com/Home-Front-Legacy-Hanford-Nuclear/dp/0803259956

    both of them leave you kind of sick inside

  10. jessed says:

    What a beautifully written review. This aspect of American culture has always fascinated me. Our relationship with technology has consistently been surrounded by a sort of “creepy” sense. We know so little about where it will lead us.

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