...that means I'm younger than you.
Anyway, I agree that the government exaggerated the likelihood of nuclear war with the USSR, but their claims about the consequences of any potential nuclear war were not exaggerations. Forget about fallout and nuclear winter and all that. A relatively small nuclear arsenal, with the proper delivery system, can kill hundreds of millions of people and cause trillions of dollars in damage in a few minutes. And a nuclear arsenal like that of the USSR or the US could in fact kill the vast majority of the world's population and pretty much end modern civilization.
"Alas! I believe in the virtue of birds. And it only takes a feather for me to die laughing."