First things first -- thank you for your incredibly detailed and nuanced response, Catfur! I didn't mean to make it seem like I thought your treatment of the meltdowns was careless; in fact, upon re-reading your last few posts, I think we were more or less in agreement with the effects of radiation
in 2011 tea.
However, I still have a hard time believing that nuclear fallout has the same effects as cosmic radiation
due to most everything breaking down to alpha emitters (I'm not a physicist and I'm paraphrasing here, so bear with me). I understand the transuranic elements are primarily alpha emitters, but each one brings a slew of different cancers and problems along with it that you don't usually find in frequent fliers or residents of Colorado. I've also heard physicists talk of a lot of larger "hot particles" that have
become volatilized thanks to the explosions and persistent releases from the reactors, and these pose an even greater threat when inhaled than the 100-200ms/hr readings that are popping up all over Tokyo.
Also, my point with the 160rem reading was to show that the situation is not
under control, the idea of a "cold shutdown" is a total joke, and it's not
getting better -- these are the highest readings yet, and Japan's window of opportunity before the corium hits the waterbed is getting smaller and smaller. If Neptunium 239 was ejected over 60km
from the reactors, they should be evacuating people within 60km of the plant. Chernobyl's cesium decay
isn't behaving like normal, and there's no reason to assume that this multi-reactor fail will behave any better.
Sorry these last few paragraph are so tangential to tea -- I've just been wanting to voice my concerns and questions to a radioactive cleanup specialist since April