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April 5, 2009 2:17 AM   Subscribe

Nuclear puppet shows: Atomic survival PSAs by the U.S. Civil Defense
posted by Blazecock Pileon (14 comments total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
"Your livestock can survive fallout"... Oh sure! Just pile up some extra bales of hay around the barn and everything will be a-okay!... My gawd, these would be chuckle-worthy if I didn't know that they were presented seriously once upon a time. This is such an interesting cultural resource, but it makes me sad and frustrated.
posted by amyms at 2:37 AM on April 5, 2009

Thank god all those nukes were disarmed. What? The bulk of them are still pointing at us? Surely we modern global citizens can get rid of this outdated threat.
posted by bystander at 3:50 AM on April 5, 2009

The illusion of safety...
posted by nudar at 3:52 AM on April 5, 2009

The really sinister part is the bit where they tell the farmer to get his livestock under cover, then protect himself afterwards. It's one of those chilling little moments. You know it makes sense - preserving the national food supply probably is more important, overall, than preserving a couple of farmers - but you weren't expecting anyone to actually say it out loud.
posted by Acheman at 4:47 AM on April 5, 2009

piling bales of hay around a barn full of livestock in case of nuclear attack sounds like they're really planning for a post attack barbeque.
posted by lester at 5:22 AM on April 5, 2009

i don't think the hay would provide significant shielding. it might, however, push the fallout-drift (like snowdrift) farther away from the walls of the barn so that rays from the drift, the strongest radiation source, would have to pass through the ground to get to your cattle.
posted by geos at 5:41 AM on April 5, 2009

Metafilter: an interesting cultural resource, but it makes me sad and frustrated.

See also, the UK's Protect and Survive.

Thank you, neat post!
posted by generichuman at 5:46 AM on April 5, 2009

Unfortunately, not all of the puppets headed these warnings, and were thus directly exposed to the radiation. These poor mutants later became....The Letter People.
posted by orme at 7:07 AM on April 5, 2009 [1 favorite]

Wow, I mean, just fuckin' WOW. Those days... were just... what can you say? A kind of ultimate weirdness. I thought I'd seen it all. But now... puppets? Bales of hay? Protection? Damn, this stuff was just all so... so... damn.

Love how the narrator looks back to American history, and reminds us of how we used to be prepared for... indian attacks!

Then again, the much more recent propaganda (terrorists with dirty bombs, those brown people who Hate Our Freedoms) is really no less absurd, is it?

Thanks for the poignant historical post, Blazecock Pileon.

And remember... this fruit may be perfectly safe to eat, as long as you peel it.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 8:01 AM on April 5, 2009

This steak tastes like burning!
posted by blue_beetle at 9:06 AM on April 5, 2009

You shouldn't trust post-fallout hand puppets, either (direct link to images
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, and 12)
posted by filthy light thief at 9:57 AM on April 5, 2009

This is exactly what Fallout (the game) tries to emulate.
posted by azarbayejani at 10:08 AM on April 5, 2009

bystander: " The bulk of them are still pointing at us?"

My understanding is that most Russian warheads are no longer "pointed" at us. (Or so they claim.) I assume the necessary targeting information could be re-added very quickly. But this does provide at least some measure of safety in the case of an accidental launch.
posted by Joe Beese at 12:29 PM on April 5, 2009

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