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Carmageddon: How Californians Learned to Stop Driving and Love the Bomb : What a traffic jam that wasn't teaches us about the credibility of nuclear threats
nuclear weapons, nuclear threats
As Californians and many people in the United States know, the two-day closure of a critical highway in Los Angeles last weekend was predicted by some to lead to a so-called Carmageddon. How does such a word come into existence and reach the status of a ritualized utterance? Combining a monster traffic jam and the apocalypse is far from obvious, after all. How can gridlock on the roadways be compared to mass death? The use of the word as the title for a violent video game, the media's tendency to sensationalize the news, and the Californian focus on the Hollywood past of mass destruction of its former governor are not enough to account for this strange portmanteau word...