Tuesday, July 31, 2012
Monday, July 30, 2012
Humanity will survive the supposed December 2012 apocalypse, but, unfortunately, so will irrational doomsday fears, scientists say.
Doomsayers around the world are gearing up for armageddon on Dec. 21, based on predictions supposedly made by the Mayans more than 1,000 years ago. Even after the sun rises Dec. 22, however, many folks will be only momentarily reassured, quickly latching onto another scenario purported to bring about the apocalypse within their lifetime.
The persistence of these worries stems from a variety of factors, researchers say. The deluge of misinformation on the Internet, poorly developed or underutilized critical thinking skills and plain old human nature all contribute, convincing many people to fear the worst despite the lack of compelling evidence (and the poor track record of such dire predictions over the years).
"There have been end-of-the-world predictions every few years throughout history, really," said astronomer David Morrison, head of the Carl Sagan Center for the Study of Life in the Universe at the SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) Institute in Mountain View, Calif. "We had two or three last year."
Morrison spoke at the SETICon 2 conference in Santa Clara, Calif., on June 23 during a panel discussion called "Cosmophobia: Doomsday 2012 and Other Fiction Science." [Don't Panic: 2012 Doomsday Fears Debunked]
Flood of misinformation
Though Morrison and other scientists work hard to tamp down fears of Comet Elenin, the mythical planet Nibiru and other supposed agents of impending doom, their voices of reason have a hard time being heard these days.
"We are completely drowned out by the doomsayers on the Internet," Morrison said. "It's very hard for the truth to even get a hearing."
It's especially hard to reach young people, most of whom seem unable to distinguish between reliable and unreliable sources, he added.
"At the best, they will just count numbers," Morrison said. "'Well, there are 83 websites that say the world will end in 2012, and one that says it won't. So it must be true.'"
Not all of the misinformation is coming from altruistic folks who just want to get the worried word out, said fellow panelist Andrew Fraknoi, chair of the astronomy department at Foothill College in Los Altos Hills, Calif. Some of it is probably pumped out by people trying to make a buck.
"Today, it seems like money is much more important than truth, that anything goes," Fraknoi said. "Fear-mongering has become a large and profitable industry."
Data from the publishing world appear to back him up: A search for "Doomsday 2012" books on Amazon.com returns nearly 200 titles.
But not all of the blame can be laid at the Internet's feet. Doomsday fears have cropped up repeatedly throughout history, and in most cases they weren't sustained by YouTube videos and "Nibiru" Google searches. [Oops! 11 Failed Doomsday Predictions]
The Millerites, for example, believed that Jesus Christ would return to Earth in 1843 or 1844, and that the world as we know it would be destroyed in the process. Another group called the Seekers thought a huge flood would ravage our planet on Dec. 21, 1954. The Seekers' leader, a Chicago woman named Dorothy Martin, claimed to have gotten this information from aliens living on the planet Clarion.
We shouldn't be too surprised whenever such cults grab the headlines, said Leonard Mlodinow, a Caltech physicist and author of such books as "The Drunkard's Walk: How Randonmness Rules Our Lives" and "The Grand Design" (which he wrote with Stephen Hawking).
"I think it's a very natural human phenomenon," Mlodninow said. "People who we consider very rational believe such things all the time."
He cited today's major religions, saying that they would have seemed just as odd and irrational as the doomsday cults if we'd encountered them back in the early days, before they became so well established.
"I don't consider those people particularly weird," Mlodinow said of modern doomsayers. "I just think that they're early adopters, you might call them."
There's likely some ego-boosting pyschology involved as well, said panelist Seth Shostak, a senior astronomer at the SETI Institute.
"To some extent, it's a very empowering thought — that you know something very important that those nerdy, pointy-headed, tweed-jacketed academics down at the local university won't acknowledge," Shostak said. "I think you have to look for the answers there."
Is education the answer?
Whatever their causes, doomsday fears are quite prevalent in the United States and abroad.
For example, a poll commisioned by the news agency Reuters earlier this year found that 15 percent of people worldwide — or roughy 1 billion folks — believe the apocalypse will come during their lifetime. In the United States, the figure is 22 percent.
Such worries aren't just interesting sociological or psychological phenomena, Morrison said. They can have tragic consequences for believers.
"At least once a week, I get a question from a young person — usually 11, 12 years old — who says they are contemplating suicide before the end of the world," Morrison said. "I know of several cases at least of reported suicides, of people who are obsessed with the end of the world in 2012."
The best way to combat irrational doomsday worries — especially among the young — is education, Fraknoi said. We need to teach better critical thinking skills and instill a love of discovery that will inspire kids to seek out the truth — and make them less likely to be gulled by fanciful rumors.
"Ask yourself the question, 'Why should I believe a word of this?'" Fraknoi said. "If you know how to answer, 'Why should I believe a word of this?' then you're much closer to scientific truth."
Follow SPACE.com senior writer Mike Wall on Twitter @michaeldwall or SPACE.com@Spacedotcom. We're also on Facebook and Google+.
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Sunday, July 29, 2012
Kansas man selling 'doomsday' missile silo from nuclear age - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports
FAIRWAY, KS (KCTV) -
Jeff Flaningham owns a unique part of American history that sits underneath a field in central Kansas.
But he is wanting to part with it. He is hoping someone will want to spend $425,000 to buy a super fortified underground bunker.
There are 72 of these type of decommissioned missile silos across the United States, and 12 of them are in Kansas.
"One of the most secure hardened structures ever built by man," Flaningham said. He hails from Wisconsin.
KCTV5 received an exclusive tour of this unique property. Watch the video to see inside the silo.
The massive, secure and expensive missile silos were built discretely in spots like the middle of Kansas. Flaningham's is 17 stories deep.
"There was an elevator in here that would raise the missile to the surface," he said. "There were scenarios that came very close to a retaliatory strike, but luckily cooler heads prevailed. And we get to enjoy this stuff today."
So who would enjoy owning a missile silo? With Mayans and others predicting the end of the world, Flaningham is hoping there's a market.
"Survivalists, conspiracy theorists, doomsdayers, there (are) any number of people," he said. "It's one of the safest places you can own on the face of the planet and an excellent spot to build any type of luxury living that would consider building above ground."
It also comes complete with its own escape hatch.
"This is the ultimate big guy fort," Flaningham said.
KCTV5 received an exclusive tour of this unique property. Watch the video to see inside the silo.
Click here to see Flaningham's eBay ad.
Copyright 2012 KCTV (Meredith Corp.) All rights reserved.
Saturday, July 28, 2012
Wednesday, July 25, 2012
Sunday, July 22, 2012
Friday, July 20, 2012
Wednesday, July 18, 2012
Solar flares; are they the beginnings of the Doomsday prophecies.
When we look at the Mayan and their advanced knowledge of our solar system, even the most skeptical individuals may need a moment to pause. On Friday July 6, 2012 a ‘X-class’ eruption showed the power of the Sun’s 11-year solar flare cycle.
With Friday’s ‘Coronal Mass Ejections’,http://www.swpc.noaa.gov/today.html NOAA Space Weather Prediction Center reported, that the flare was 15 times the length of Earth, and say that more X-class eruptions will usher us into 2013.
Are these the events Mayans had witnessed and foretold of, incorporating them into their prolific prophecies? Were they telling us that over the next few months, we will not only have to take cover, but also change the way we do everything going forward? What will the future hold, or are we looking at the beginning of society ending, mega destruction?
Scientists everywhere disprove the theory of a global killing solar ray, yet even the best scientists only have historic and perceived data on this twenty-thousand year cycle.
Geologists and cosmologists alike cannot predict the idiosyncrasies of the Sun’s actions or their impact on Earth; they too can only report what events have taken place.
Taking in the latest heat wave that engulfed North America, will we soon be slathering on the SPF 1000? On the other hand, will we be looking for ways to survive in the depths of the Earth?
People at Vivos: http://www.terravivos.com believe, so much that they have placed a hefty price tag on their six-month all-inclusive packages. For the deluxe model stay in Indiana, you only have to dole out a mere $50,000 per adult and $35,000 for each child. However, for the budget conscience they have downsized some of their luxury suites to accommodate 1000 souls for the price of $9,950 per person in their economy section.
Remember the Titanic, steerage anyone?
Tuesday, July 17, 2012
Prof Muse Tegegne
- Prof. Muse Tegegne has lectured sociology Change & Liberation in Europe, Africa and Americas. He has obtained Doctorat es Science from the University of Geneva. A PhD in Developmental Studies & ND in Natural Therapies. He wrote on the problematic of the Horn of Africa extensively. He Speaks Amharic, Tigergna, Hebrew, English, French. He has a good comprehension of Arabic, Spanish and Italian.