bend over and kiss your ass goodbye!
September 27, 2004 11:22 PM   Subscribe

just in case atom bombs fall - a handbook for civilians.
a neato keen early 50's civil defense booklet.
posted by quonsar (20 comments total)
and a mirror in case topsites limits bandwidth.
posted by quonsar at 11:23 PM on September 27, 2004

What to do during an attack:
  1. Keep cool.
  2. Lie down.
  3. Stay at home.
  4. And for God's sake keep away from radioactive dust.
Working for the Civil Defense bureaucracy must have been a blast.
posted by moonbiter at 12:09 AM on September 28, 2004

5. Don't start rumors.
6. Don't spread rumors.
7. The rumors will kill us all!!!
posted by woil at 12:11 AM on September 28, 2004

Can't you just hear the announcer's voice from every film you saw in grade school on the rickety old projector?
posted by eyeballkid at 12:11 AM on September 28, 2004

there is a dildo on the cover
posted by mr.marx at 12:25 AM on September 28, 2004

I love the - don't worry about bigger bombs, because bigger bombs are rubbish and nobody will bother developing them - type information. As they were secretly developing bigger, better (?) bombs.

Ohh how the times have(n't) changed.
posted by DrDoberman at 2:14 AM on September 28, 2004

8. Profit!
posted by AwkwardPause at 2:32 AM on September 28, 2004

"A Reliable Source of Educational Materials

In 1986, the lnstitute began a special project of research and education on American civil defense. In the course of this work, the Institute has published two books - Nuclear War Survival Skills by Cresson Kearny and Fighting Chance by Arthur Robinson and Gary North. It has also produced 15 educational video tapes, shelter designs and plans, over 100 articles on various aspects of civil defense, and other educational materials. "

posted by troutfishing at 3:01 AM on September 28, 2004

Concerning the aforementioned institute :

I would certainly consider the civil defense plans and designs published by OISM to be of the highest caliber....and I'm sure OISM does some valid anti-aging research too.

But, I would not sign their "Global Warming is a Hoax" petition - which was originally sent widely to hundreds of thousands of scientists ( and I wonder where the funding for that came from ) with an attached cover note that proved rather controversial : "....A cover note signed "Frederick Seitz/Past President, National Academy of Sciences, U.S.A./President Emeritus, Rockefeller University", may have given some persons the impression that Robinson's paper was an official publication of the academy's peer-reviewed journal." ( Disinfopedia ) and I would not seriously consider using the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica as the foundation of my child's home schooling curriculum.

Oops.....derail. Please return now to your regularly scheduled Quonsar channel.
posted by troutfishing at 4:04 AM on September 28, 2004

shorter handbook:

bend over and kiss your ass goodbye
posted by nofundy at 5:24 AM on September 28, 2004

there is a dildo on the cover

Oh, I was thinking tampon. My bad.
posted by ChrisTN at 5:40 AM on September 28, 2004

a steel tampon?

This book is great. Makes me want to scan in a "Protect Yourself from Terrorists" book that I bought for laughs a while back.
posted by sciurus at 5:44 AM on September 28, 2004

Nice, thanks!
posted by carter at 6:21 AM on September 28, 2004

Steely Dan?

So I guess having the smoking gun come in the form of a mushroom cloud wouldn't be all that bad. In fact, the whole book would've helped us understand WMD:
We can forget unfounded talk about "mystery" germs and poisons capable of killing millions of people at once. Most of this is nonsense and scare-talk built on twisted facts.

Remember: Don't listen to propaganda about how germs can wipe out whole cities.
posted by kirkaracha at 6:23 AM on September 28, 2004

Wow, this brings back memories. A similar book was always in one of our bathrooms till my folks bought a new house in 1987. I remember reading it when I was in grade 1 or 2 and getting very upset. It gave me a sickly fascination with nuclear energy. We also had a 1954 Little&Ive's Encyclopedia of Science and Technology that I learned more about nuclear energy (including some very cool pictures of the blue glow around a reactor) when I was in grade 3 or 4.
posted by substrate at 7:13 AM on September 28, 2004

ground zero odds of survival, 1 in 10? somebody was wearing their rose-colored blinders that day. i mean, 1 in 10? and the radiation wasn't that bad, even at ground zero of a nuclear blast? uh... sure, i'll buy that. and do you happen to have a deed to the golden gate bridge that you're itching to sell me, too?

then again, these were also the folks who thought we'd be wearing jet packs and zipping off to the moon in our flying cars by now. (damn. and they say the drugs are getting more potent these days... looks to me like whatever those dudes were smoking in the 50s was plenty strong enough. flying cars, my ass.)
posted by caution live frogs at 10:02 AM on September 28, 2004

To anyone who hasn't seen it, I highly recommend 'Atomic Cafe', a film that's all about this kind of government propoganda...
posted by kaibutsu at 10:51 AM on September 28, 2004

What to do during an attack:

9. Find yourself a sexy bathing beauty and commence repopulating the planet.
posted by gompa at 11:07 AM on September 28, 2004

caution live frogs, remember they're talking about Hiroshima-power atomic (uranium/plutonium fission) bombs here. That weapon had a yield of only about 12-18 kilotons of TNT. While obviously not an inconsiderable blast, the effects described in this manual are consistent with what happened in Hiroshima and Nagasaki, and people who were within a mile of the actual ground zero points of those bombs did indeed survive - and remember the bombs were also airbursts, even people who were directly under them were some 2000 feet away from the blast point. If there was enough solid material between you and the bomb blast, you might not even be injured even at that close distance!

You may be thinking of the sort of destruction that the later, much more powerful hydrogen fusion bombs are capable of, with yields of 1 megaton up to as much as 20 or more megatons - hundreds to thousands of times the blast power - and perhaps also of what would happen in a ground burst. Note that ground bursts are not as effectively destructive as airbursts, which this book points out.

So, as pointed out above, this book doesn't take into account that much larger bombs were eventually created and put into deployment in the early 1950s by both sides. Also, it talks about an "air attack," meaning attack via high-altitude bombers - clearly pre-ICBM and MIRV warhead days. When they used to plan to deliver bombs by aircraft, the DEW line would have given hours of warning that bombers were on their way, and the populace could hunker down in the bomb shelters and most of them would probably survive the attack with little harm.

Note that Hiroshima and Nagasaki had ZERO warning so people were just going about their daily business when the bombs went off. Horrible. That was a conscious decision by Truman and the Joint Chiefs, by the way; they had thought about warning the Japanese and giving them a chance to evacuate the "demonstration" city, but felt that it would be much more effective to just let the bomb kill a lot of people to get the point across...

So anyway, for the time, the booklet's probably not so far off as you might think.
posted by zoogleplex at 11:25 AM on September 28, 2004

Along the same lines: Duck and Cover
posted by O9scar at 12:33 PM on September 28, 2004

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