Author Kennedy Maize describes his book as a kind of “cautionary tale.” His writing is concerned with the impact of atom powered devices, such as the atomic bomb, as well as the ways in which research and experimentation of the subject has resulted in deception of the American public and congress, endless funding of projects with no significant outcomes and the senseless deaths of thousands of American soldiers and civilians during times of war.
He elaborates on covert research such as The Manhattan Project, which at one point was so hidden, not even the president of the United States was aware of its true purpose. The secrecy of the project prevented post war policy makers from making informed decisions in regard to atomic energy research, because they weren’t provided with information about it’s risks, expenses and unethical use.
To further demonstrate his beliefs, Maize includes a quote by Charles Hendry, the British Energy minister in 2011 who stated that, at the time, government energy agencies behaved “like an expense account dinner: everybody ordering the most expensive items on the menu, because someone else was paying the bill”.
“Too Dumb to Meter” provides important historical information about research and ultimately devices that significantly changed the fabric of America and the ways in which American wars are fought. However, the author has very strong, non-negotiable opinions about the subject, which may or may not interfere with his ability to be objective.
Reviewed by Rebecca Nichloson for IndieReader
Too Dumb to Meter: Follies, Fiascoes, Dead Ends and Duds on the U.S. Road to Atomic Energy