post cold war

fashion consults!

as most of you know, I was in the hospital this month. why? my heart. again. always. two cardiac arrests within a fifteen minute span as I was getting ready for work; an ambulance came and got me and everything. after that, it was two weeks of tests and surgery and new medications and short-term disability and ultimately, no answers. my heart condition remains a rare and mysterious jewel. so good news: I’m alive. bad news: I’m an american who just spent two weeks in the best electrocardiology ward in new york city. which means medical bills. so many fucking medical bills. 

now, I have insurance, but before it kicks in I have a significant deductible to meet. every scrap of every paycheck is going towards those bills for the foreseeable future. which isn’t great, considering I took two-thirds of my closet off to a consignment store about a month before this happened. You guys know me, I’d like to be able to fill it out again. so I’m proposing a trade: I’ll dress you if you dress me. 

style consulting - rates and services

  1. $15 option - one time occasion styling! if you have a wedding or a graduation or a big date coming up, I’ll hop on skype with you for a half-hour and see what we can do with the clothes you already have.
  2. $20 option - fashion guidance. I’ll ask you to send me five to seven pictures of outfits, styles, or fashion icons that you like. from there, I’ll write up my impressions of your fashion goals, advise you towards certain trends, and help you solidify your sense of personal style. (here is an example)
  3. $40 option - fashion guidance + personal shopper. You’ll receive all the services of #1, plus I’ll discuss your budget and then go shopping for you. I’ll put together ten items within your price range that will help you meet your style aspirations. 
  4. $65 option - fashion guidance + personal shopper + skype consult. You’ll receive all the services of #1 and #2, plus I will set up a 45 minute in-person skype consult with you. We’ll go through your closet (or whatever items you choose) together, and I’ll help you pinpoint which garments will work with your new look, and which ones won’t. 

**request via an ask - include your email address, your name, and which service you want - I’ll send you an email and we can begin the conversation there.** 

(note: all these prices are suggested. obviously if you’re willing to donate more, I’d appreciate it, each option takes about an hour and a half more to do than the option preceding it. if you want something different than what I’m offering, send me a message and we’ll talk details.)

(second note: I’ll be doing these requests in the order I get them. When I get your inquiry, I’ll let you know where you are in the queue.)

I’ll still be giving out style advice all the time on this blog, don’t worry! But in-depth, individually tailored stuff takes me a lot of time, and I’d like to be able to turn that into something I can use to buy shoes that won’t fall apart with nyc wear.

hope to dress you soon! ♥

For @aveanexalea , since he requested it and it was on my vote list.

Back in the early portion of the cold war, US air planners and air defence controllers had a major problem. In the day and age of a single modern bomber being able to take out an entire city, or multiple in a single mission, the US had to guarantee that to the best of their ability to be able to take down as many soviet bombers as possible, preferably all of them, in the event of an atomic conflict.

From past experience, they knew that the “bomber would always get through”, especially when used in mass bomber swarms, or combat boxes, as was the US term. (More of a specific bomber formation doctrine, but eh). Conventional Anti-aircraft measures could and would down some of the bombers, but a large volume would get through. Any Soviet bombers escaping air defences would more than likely result in destroyed US cities and the millions of preventable casualties that would follow.

This was unacceptable. The USAF, taking a page from their Army comrades, decided to go nuclear. The US army’s doctrine was to use atomic munitions to vaporize soviet armoured divisions if they were able to roll through any conventional weapons, for the defence of Western Europe. The USAF decided that an atomic device air-burst in the middle of a soviet bomber formation would do just the trick.

New developments in US Atomics research had allowed for the development of sealed pit devices.

“A weapon “boosted” by tritium and deuterium gas would use much less fissile material to produce a large explosion. Right before the moment of detonation, these hydrogen gases would be released into the weapon’s core. When the core imploded, the gases would fuse, release neutrons, multiply the number of fissions, and greatly increase the yield. And because the fissile core would be hollow and thin, a lesser amount of explosives would be needed to implode it. As a result, boosted weapons could be light and small.“

Eric Schlosser,  Command and Control: Nuclear Weapons, the Damascus Accident, and the Illusion of Safety.  (New York: The Penguin Press, 2013), Pg. 103.

This new development allowed for more powerful weapons in smaller packages.

This allowed the Air-2 Genie to pack the punch it required.

The Air-2 Genie represented the first sealed-pit weapon to enter US stockpile. With conventional air-to air weapons proving inadequate, and the threat of a single Soviet aircraft wreaking havoc on the mainland US, the USAF deemed the safest option for the downing of US bombers was the detonation of small atomic devices over the skies of the mainland United States, Alaska, and Canada. 

This “view was endorsed in March 1955 by James R. Killian, the president of MIT, who headed a top secret panel on the threat of surprise attack”. - “The Genie would be carried by Air Force fighter-interceptors. It had a small, 1.5-kiloton warhead and a solid-fueled rocket engine. Unlike conventional air defense weapons, it didn’t need a direct hit to eliminate a target. And it could prove equally useful against a single Soviet bomber or a large formation of them”.

-Ibid.

The Genie was to be fired upon contact with a Soviet bomber. The sooner the better for the sake of the US, as will be explained in detail below. 

The on board fire computer would calculate the distance to the bomber, or bombers, and set the on board timer for the Air-2 Genie. After launch, the US fighter would bank hard and roll out and away from the projected device initiation point. Initiation of the device would occur once the timer ran out. The rocket would speed towards the hostile aircraft at Mach 3.3 powered by a solid fueled Thiokol SR49 rocket motor. Primary kill effects were caused surprisingly enough not by blast or heat, which, despite the low yield of 1.5 kilotons, were still effective out to a great distance. The Fireball would consume any aircraft within a hundred yards, yet the most effective killing agent of this device was the prompt radiation released. Even a bad miss could still kill, given that the lethal envelope of the prompt radiation had a radius of about a mile with “the “probability of kill” (PK) within that envelope [found] to be 92 percent”.

“The Soviet aircrew’s death from radiation might take as long as five minutes—a delay that made it even more important to fire the Genie as far as possible from urban areas. Detonated at a high altitude, the weapon produced little fallout and didn’t lift any debris from the ground to form a mushroom cloud. After the bright white flash, a circular cloud drifted from the point of detonation, forming an immense smoke ring in the sky”.

-Ibid.

The discussion of permission to fire these devices was brought up, and how a request to fire the devices may be delayed to the point where several US cities may well have gone up in smoke. In response to these concerns, the use of these devices were pre-delegated to the USAF, by Eisenhower in April 1956, with the actual order coming into effect in December.

In effect, the USAF was able to fire atomic air-to-air rockets at any target that was deemed ‘hostile’. While the joint chief’s of staff demanded that these devices were to be locked up in storage igloos, and never to be flown over the United States except in war time. Presumably, the reality of this was that a large volume of air interceptors were on the deck ready to jet in the event of a conflict. At first warning of the DEW line, Mid-Canada line or the Pine-tree Line, the aircraft would be armed, with Genies extracted from their storage sheds, with the air interceptors, now armed with atomic rockets, sent to intercept the soviet waves of bombers.


To prove the device safe in use, the USAF conducted  Operation Plumbbob on 19 July 1957. This proved to be the only live firing of a Air-2 Genie missile, which initiated somewhere  between 18,500 and 20,000 ft (5,600 and 6,100 m) above mean sea level. (Sources vary). A group of five USAF officers volunteered to stand hatless in their light summer uniforms underneath the blast to prove that the weapon was safe for use over populated areas. They were photographed by Department of Defense photographer George Yoshitake who stood there with them. Gamma and neutron doses received by observers on the ground were negligible. Doses received by aircrew were highest for the fliers assigned to penetrate the airburst cloud ten minutes after explosion.

Source

As shown in the video above, with the description just above, “The
officers wore summer uniforms and no protective gear. A photograph, taken at the moment of detonation, shows that two of the men instinctively ducked, two shielded their eyes, and one stared upward, looking straight at the blast. “It glowed for an instant like a newborn sun,” Time magazine reported, “then faded
into a rosy, doughnut-shaped cloud.”


Eric Schlosser,  Command and Control: Nuclear Weapons, the Damascus Accident, and the Illusion of Safety.  (New York: The Penguin Press, 2013), Pg. 105. 

Problems arise.  

Inevitably , problems began to arise. Given that sealed-pit weapons were quite new, with this model of weapon being the first in stockpiles, how safe were they? This was a bit of an unknown, one that needed to be found out when thousands of these devices would be put on airfields and storage facility’s across the country, many within city limits.

The U.S. government was quite public about the Genie missile. 

“When atomic bombs were first transferred to SAC bases in French Morocco, the French government wasn’t told about the weapons. But the deployment of Genies at air bases throughout the United States was announced in an Air Force press release.”

“The possibility of any nuclear explosion occurring as a result of an accident involving either impact or fire is virtually nonexistent,” Secretary of Defense Wilson assured the public”. 
His press release reported “that someone standing on
the ground directly beneath the high-altitude detonation of a Genie would be exposed to less radiation than “a hundredth of a dose received in a standard (medical) X-ray.”

-Ibid

However, it should be noted that “His press release about the
Genie didn’t mention the risk of plutonium contamination”,
not from an airburst anti-bomber detonation, but from an accidental surface burst.

The risks of plutonium exposure were becoming more apparent in the mid-1950s. Although the alpha particles emitted by plutonium are too weak to penetrate human skin, they can destroy lung tissue when plutonium dust is inhaled. Anyone within a few hundred feet of a weapon accident spreading plutonium can inhale a swiftly lethal dose. Cancers of the lung, liver, lymph nodes, and bone can be caused by the inhalation of minute amounts. And the fallout from such an accident may contaminate a large area for a long time. Plutonium has a half-life of about twenty-four thousand years. It remains hazardous throughout that period, and plutonium dust is hard to clean up. “The problem of decontaminating the site of [an] accident may be insurmountable,” a classified Los Alamos report noted a month after the Genie’s onepoint
safety test, “and it may have to be ‘written off’ permanently.” “.

Understandably, this would drive the civilian members in charge of safety quite quickly to protest, with the very thought of having to inform the public that a section, or perhaps all of a major US city would be uninhabitable for an extremely extended period being almost unthinkable.

There was heavy debate actually among those in the Atomic Energy Commission (AEC), as to whether use a plutonium, or uranium-235 base for the fission products in the genie devices. 

“In one respect, uranium-235 seemed to be safer. It has a half-life of about seven hundred million years—but emits radiation at a much lower rate than plutonium, greatly reducing the inhalation hazard. And yet a Genie with a uranium core had its own risks. Norris Bradbury, the director of Los Alamos, warned the AEC that such a core was “probably not safe against one-point detonation.” In effect, shrapnel, or a stray bullet, or what have you from an aircraft crash, or sabotage, or whatever incident may well cause the device to, quite frankly, initiate. Heck, even a fire could cause it. 





In short, using uranium as the base fission product, the Genies would fail the one-point safety test, and could be set off very easily. Using Uranium as the base fission product, “Impact tests revealed that when the Genie was armed, it didn’t need a firing signal to detonate. The Genie could produce a nuclear explosion just by hitting the ground”.

Ibid-Pg 107

Understandably, “given the choice between an accident that might cause a nuclear explosion and one that might send a cloud of plutonium over an American city, the Air Force preferred the latter. Handmade, emergency capability Genies were rushed into production, with cores that contained plutonium”.

Ibid.-Pg 105

Even with the one-point safety test proven, there was still the potential for complications.
“The one-point safety tests at Nevada Test Site had provided encouraging results, and yet the behavior of a nuclear weapon in an “abnormal environment”—like that of a fuel fire ignited by a plane crash—was still poorly understood. During a fire, the high explosives of a weapon might burn; they might detonate; or they might burn and then detonate. And different weapons might respond differently to the same fire, based on the type, weight, and configuration of their high explosives. For firefighting purposes, each weapon was assigned a “time factor”—the amount of time you had, once a weapon was engulfed in flames, either to put out the fire or to get at least a thousand feet away from it. The time factor for the Genie was three minutes”.

Ibid.- Pg 109

Heck, there was concern that the fire may even start the standard detonation process.

“The heat of a fire might start the thermal batteries, release high-voltage
electricity into the X-unit, and then set off the bomb. To eliminate that risk, heat-sensitive fuses were added to every sealed-pit weapon. At a temperature of 300 degrees Fahrenheit, the fuses would blow, melting the connections between the batteries and the arming system. It was a straightforward, time-honored way to interrupt an electrical circuit, and it promised to ensure that a high temperature wouldn’t trigger the detonators”.

Ibid.

In 1977, a study was completed that reported that “despite being the oldest sealed-pit weapon in the stockpile, vulnerable to lightning, and fitted
with an outdated accelerometer, the Genie was still being loaded onto fighter planes”.

Ibid. Pg. 223



In the end, over 3000 Genie’s were produced, being used by both the USAF from 1957 to 1985, and the R.C.A.F. from 1965 to 1984.

Here, have this for your troubles.

Sources-

Wiki, for basic info-

Schlosser, Eric.  Command and Control: Nuclear Weapons, the Damascus Accident, and the Illusion of Safety.  New York: The Penguin Press, 2013.

About Shaladin

I realise I’m gonna get hate for this, but at this point I don’t care.

I’m a Shallura shipper, and I only really see Shiro and Keith’s relationship as brotherly, but I personally don’t mind Shaladin.

We all know Shiro’s twenty-five, Pidge is fourteen, and Keith, Lance and Hunk’s ages aren’t specified, but they’re in their “late teens”, which can go from seventeen to TWENTY-ONE, making them legal. Either way, they’re fictional characters, so you can just age them all up and it’s fine.

From what I’ve seen between Shiro and Keith’s canon interactions especially, they have a mutual respect for eachother, and Shiro’s a sensible guy, so if they did get into a relationship, it wouldn’t be an abusive one.

If you still have a problem with it, fine, but you don’t need to go out of your way to call Shaladin shippers disgusting, like how much do you have to hate your own life to spread so much negativity over fictional characters. Block the tags if it makes you that uncomfortable. I hate incest ships, but I don’t go bashing people who like them. Leave the shippers alone. Leave the VAs alone.

Have a nice day.

America: Okay. I’m done messing around. If you want to play games with your life that’s fine. We can do that. And this game is one of yours, isn’t it, Russia? *And he stands, pulls out his gun and removes one bullet.* Let’s make this more challenging.

America: Full round and one blank. *He presses the gun to his head.* I’ll even go first. 

*He pulls the trigger. A click. It’s the blank. He grins, tosses the gun onto the table in front of Russia.*

America: Your turn.  

At 68, Jeremy Corbyn has been on the Labour Party’s left flank longer than many of his most enthusiastic supporters — the ones who nearly propelled him to an upset victory in this month’s British general election — have been alive. Bernie Sanders, who won more votes from young people in the 2016 primaries than Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton combined, is 75, and has a demeanor that, honestly, reminds me of my Jewish grandfather. Jean-Luc Mélenchon, the Communist-backed candidate who, thanks to support from young people, surged in the polls ahead of the first round of France’s presidential election, is a sprightly 65.

What has driven so many young people into passionate political work, sweeping old socialists with old ideas to new heights of popularity? To understand what is going on, you have to realize that politicians like Mr. Sanders and Mr. Corbyn have carried the left-wing torch in a sort of long-distance relay, skipping generations of centrists like Bill Clinton and Tony Blair, to hand it to today’s under-35s. And you have to understand why young people are so ready to grab that torch and run with it.

[…]

Meanwhile, people my age — I’m 29 — are more in need of a robust leftist platform than ever. The post-Cold War capitalist order has failed us: Across Europe and the United States, millennials are worse off than their parents were and are too poor to start new families. In the United States, they are loaded with college debt (or far less likely to be employed without a college degree) and are engaged in precarious and non-unionized labor. Also the earth is melting.

There’s nothing inherently radical about youth. But our politics have been shaped by an era of financial crisis and government complicity. Especially since 2008, we have seen corporations take our families’ homes, exploit our medical debt and cost us our jobs. We have seen governments impose brutal austerity to please bankers. The capitalists didn’t do it by accident, they did it for profit, and they invested that profit in our political parties. For many of us, capitalism is something to fear, not celebrate, and our enemy is on Wall Street and in the City of London.

“Why Are So Many Young Voters Falling For Old Socialists?” by Sarah Leonard, New York Times

4

  “In contrast to the opulent interior, with its voluptuous curves and gilded surfaces, the space just outside of it is the exact opposite- cold fluorescent lights flicker onto hard concrete walls covered with fading puck rock posters, like a club that has taken over an abandoned underground bunker…We have designed the lobby and entrance path to be of the "other” Russian aesthetic- rather than lush, czarist Russia, its post-Cold War era.

  For us, the contrast between outside and inside was important to define spatially, and is the reason for the two environments- its literally “war” and “peace.” Inspired by Dave’s lyrics: “There’s a war going on out there somewhere,” and “The war can’t touch us here.” -Mimi Lien, A Total Environment