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A Journey Through the Pentagon's Most Innovative World

 Incompetently researched, ill-written and uncorroborated, Sharon Weinberger's  bitter and "mean-spirited" book is a total failure. 

"Real name" customer reviews at

"A battle to read, not worth it in the end" - Chris Knight, AU.

"Don't waste your time" - D. Muhr, Chicago

"Just awful!!" - H. Kimble, Loveland, OH

"Axe to Grind" - Sean Malowney, Seattle
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In her book Imaginary Weapons, Sharon Weinberger reminds us that vast amounts of the taxpayers money (about $50,000 per second) are spent on the technology of war. Improving of the technology requires understanding of the underlying science, a complex and challenging task. In order to "simplify" decisions that direct (or redirect) billions of dollars of contracts there have emerged cadres of "Experts" whose massive certainties about what can (and more often, what cannot) be done become the dominant factors in decisions about "who gets the money." Membership in these elite cadres having been known as "the JASONS," or "the Best and the Brightest," is usually secret, self-perpetuating, and void of diversity. In Imaginary Weapons, Sharon Weinberger claims to address this topic. However, what she produces is a portrayal of 2-dimensional actors in a grotesque morality play that is written without concern for the number of casualties that will result from her labeling of real people as being either Good or Evil according to her shallow level of understanding of the issues. 

In fact, Imaginary Weapons tells only the story of the battle that ensued over an insignificant 5 seconds of Defense expenditure. 

Imaginary Weapons also illuminates the dangerous threat to that existing totalitarian management of scientific research that underlies war technology that must not advance too rapidly, and certainly not too cheaply. In most of Imaginary Weapons, Sharon Weinberger has focused on one "obscure Texas scientist" whom she labels the "antihero" of the book - a full Professor of Physics for 31 years, who refused all security clearances and elected to work only openly with a sequence of 36 Graduate Students who got the PhD under his direction and who were drawn from the most diverse origins. In a team of 15 Faculty and Students from 8 laboratories in 5 countries, they proved that the great energy storage of isomeric Hafnium nuclei could be released on demand by winning, in open international competition, considerable access to the world's leading research tool for such experiments, the great synchrotron light source in Japan. The US facilities used by the "Best and Brightest," remain tied for 4th rank in the world and so proved inadequate for such research. The Climax of Imaginary Weapons by  Sharon Weinberger describes the destruction of that collaboration after 6 years of leadership in Isomer research.
"Let them work at Wal-Mart" 

- Sharon Weinberger empathizing with the students and young professionals who lost their jobs because of her book.


"Dr. Alp [p.205] advised that he did not provide Spring-8 officials with Ms. Weinberger's magazine article, contrary to the account in the book."

- Chief Counsel, Chicago Office of the United States Department of Energy. book rankings:

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Comparative rankings of Imaginary Weapons by Sharon Weinberger with a pleasant children's book that started at the same rank.

The Earth's premier synchrotron source
of precision X-ray energies
where nuclear isomers have released
the greatest energy densities.

Proving the strength of diversity
this team continued to prove the easy
release of energy stored in the
nuclear spin isomers of Hafnium-178.