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Japan Nuke Nightmare Level Raised To 'Chernobyl Level'

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Japan finally acknowledged the full horrors at its Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear power plant and raised the "severity rating" to 7, the highest on the accident scale and equivalent to the Chernobyl disaster in Ukraine a quarter-century ago. Each step up the International Nuclear and Radiological Event Scale represents a tenfold increase in danger, with an accident level of 7 indicative of a “major release of radioactive material with widespread health and environmental effects requiring implementation of planned and extended countermeasures.”


According to Bloomberg News, the Fukushima catastrophe is now "Japan’s worst civilian nuclear disaster." They have to put "civilian" in there because the worst nuclear disaster was when the United States government dropped successive atomic bombs on the cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, killing a quarter-million people.

(Japan had signaled its intention to surrender before the double atomic bombing, having endured the "traditional" U.S. firebombing of 67 of its cities and towns and the destruction of much of its fleet. But Washington was deliberately vague about the fate of Japan's emperor, considered the living god of the Japanese, and the Potsdam Declaration demanding "unconditional surrender" and "stern justice ... meted out to all war criminals" was not answered. So the whimsically named atomic bombs were detonated over these two cities.)

Anyway, stocks are falling in Asia as everyone begins freaking out all over again. The fallout is already showing up at dangerous levels in milk from Hawaii and Arkansas and Pennsylvania, and Western U.S. produce and drinking water, but the EPA assures us (on its website) that everything's fine.

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Fellow Wonkers, this last week of horror has been wearing on us all, because here we are in a world where the "president" of the United States has ordered that migrant children be taken away from their parents at the border, and is simultaneously proud of it (for his base) and cravenly blaming it on Democrats because even he knows it's morally reprehensible. But what the hell can we do about it beyond calling our senators and representatives and posting sadness on Twitter, the latter of which is of dubious utility to anyone, and mostly depressing?

Resist the urge to disappear into a bottle. The kids and the families need you.

Slate has compiled a great list of places to start, which we will liberally summarize for you right now:

The thing these folks need most is LAWYERS. If you're an immigration lawyer, you're probably already swamped. But on the off chance you have time and expertise to spare, the American Immigration Lawyers Association is building a list of volunteers.

Yr Dok Zoom has given money to the fine folks at RAICES, a San Antonio-based group that has two major projects. They're getting lawyers for migrant families (and for the kids when possible) and raising money to pay migrant parents' bond so they can be out of jail and with their families. If you're in Texas, then click here to volunteer!

Update: RAICES is also holding a "what you can do" webinar this Thursday:



Also for folks who are in Texas:

The Texas Civil Rights Project is seeking "volunteers who speak Spanish, Mam, Q'eqchi' or K'iche' and have paralegal or legal assistant experience."

There's also CARA -- an umbrella organization for the Catholic Legal Immigration Network, the American Immigration Council, the Refugee and Immigrant Center for Education and Legal Services, and the American Immigration Lawyers Association. Together, they provide legal services at immigration detention centers.

To help kids who are already in immigration detention, there's Kids in Need of Defense, which provides children with representation in immigration court and also lobbies for children's legal interests. Donate here.

If you're not quite sure where to give, ActBlue has bundled several immigrant rights groups into a single donation button -- see the list and donate here.

Remember, there's always the ACLU, which is fighting family separation with a federal class action lawsuit.

You want to march? Former top government ethics lawyer Walter Shaub, who gave up trying to tell the Trump administration what ethics even are, will be announcing the details of a national march (think DC and local affiliated marches) tonight on MSNBC's "All In with Chris Hayes." We'll make noise here, too.

Good people are coming together to put an end to this cruelty. EVERY Democrat in the Senate is now co-sponsoring Dianne Feinstein's bill to stop family separation.

And hell, we'll even give the last word to Jennifer Rubin, who seems to have reassessed some of her previous political views. She has a reminder for all of us:

Damn straight. Remember it every damn day between now and then.

It's your open thread. Don't boo -- organize. Time to RESIST.

Follow Doktor Zoom on Twitter

Don't take for granted that the institutions you love will always be there, like democracy, and Wonkette. Click to save at least one of them!

[Slate]

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There are perks to being the only Harvard professor willing to shill for the Bush League Mussolini. Everyone else has to haul ass to the Fox studio and sit for hair and makeup. Not Alan Dershowitz! He just parks his laptop in Pee Wee's playhouse and Skypes in that rant. Is he even wearing pants? We hope never to find out!

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