I’ve been reading about the so-called “Doomsday Clock” for few decades now and I have to say that it seems stupid and irrelevant to me.
Here you have an awareness tool that is modeled after something most folks can relate to, a simple analog clock. Therein lies the problem. Firstly, the stupid Doomsday Clock only started at about a quarter ’til midnight. Secondly, it is able to go backwards.
To me, the relevance of this kind of warning vehicle is completely negated by the fact that you can say “We’re only 4 minutes away from CERTAIN ANNIHILATION!!” (and yes, I remember when that happened). And then a little while say “Ah, things have changed… no worries, we still have more time.”.
It’s alarmist and it’s faulty, and worse, it’s just a bad metaphor as it attempts to use something completely irrelevant to the conversation in trying to make its point. At least the wildly lampooned Homeland Security Alert Levels never claimed any kind of time component to them, which makes them a far better vehicle for non-hysterical situational awareness. Even if nobody understands what the heck the colors are supposed to mean :).