Paul: I've been reading posts on this site for a couple of years now and I've never seen an "editor's note" directing people to articles written by opposing points of view. While Rod seems to be very knowledgeable on the topic of nuclear energy, he also seems to be anything but objective. The second article that they linked to seemed to be pretty much just propaganda.
I personally, and as an advocate for renewable energy, am not totally against nuclear energy, IF IT CAN BE SAFELY! (which I'm convinced that it can't be with the current design of nuclear power plants - based upon the established failure rate of nuclear power plants).
I also have some major concerns about uranium as a fuel source due to the environmental costs of mining it, as well as it's limited economically recoverable supply (about 80 years based upon current consumption)
Now, there might be something to be said for future, experimental designs for nuclear power plants that utilize other fuel sources and have built in shut down features that would prevent catastrophe's like fukishima, but these designs always seem to be "just down the road".
Regarding Eric's quote about "I can't say that I totally disagree with him. While I'm not all that into calling people names based upon their educated and rational opinions and beliefs, I don't know that a lot of pro nuclear people are all that rational in their discounting of the dangers involved with nuclear power (at least current generation nuclear power).
I would also suspect that he is right in saying that conservative people would tend to support nuclear power more than liberal people. This is borne out by a Gallop poll from March of 2010 that stated that 23% more Republicans supported nuclear power than democrats.
As far as these people being "wackos or nutties", I'm sure that some are, but that most are simply placing more or less weight on certain facts.
An example of this, related to this article, is the health effects of eating Pacific Blue Fin Tuna. While some have discounted the danger to the point of saying that it doesn't exist in practical terms, I and others have pointed out that even using the numbers put out by the pro-nuclear side (I think that it was something like an increase in cancer occurences of about 2 per 100,000???) that it equates to an additional 1,600 hundred cases of cancel (many of which will be fatal).
So, while I might think that this is unacceptable, you or other pro-nuclear people might consider 1,600 people, who otherwise wouldn't have gotten cancer, getting cancer is acceptable? I also think that pro-nuclear people tend to not consider intricate details such as the fact that these statistics (such as the 2 per 100,000 additional cases of cancer due to the Fukishima disaster) isn't going to be felt uniformly throughout the world - people who live on Pacific Islands and who eat fish as a larger percentage of their diet will be disproportionately affected.
Lastly, I'm going to turn your last statement on it's ear....that is, "Nuclear Power should stand on their own merrit (sic) without needing to spin and inaccurately vilify other sources, beside GW causing sources?"
As an educated person who has a background in energy and who has accepted that for the foreseeable future that we can't maintain our western lifestyles without nuclear power, I don't know that nuclear power meets your standard (at least not in the long run with currently available technologies)
Bob "The Clean Energy Guy" Mitchell