Friday, November 30, 2012

The Apocalypse Is Upon Us

So... December 2012 is almost here and we have measly 21 days to go. As we all know on December 21, 2012, we are all toast!

You don't believe it? Have you seen the movie 2012? It was all there, with detailed explanations for every little disaster that will occur in just a few weeks. If you don't trust Hollywood, you surely would trust the SCIENTISTS!!! I mean, the books were all well researched and full of scientific language. And if that was not enough, what about all your friends, who told you about the terrible things that were to happen in 2012, about building bunkers, and buying survival gear? They surely must have been right?

We are only three weeks away from the final date, but I'm still making plans for the weekend of the 22nd. Can the Earth be destroyed on December 21st? Sure, there are plenty of ways for this to happen, as nicely described in Philip Plait's book "Death from the Skies!", but I would not bet on them, as the odds are pretty slim (on the other hand, say that to the dinosaurs). If we want to see the real Apocalypse, we need to wait 4 - 5 billion years for the Sun to turn this planet into a burnt out cinder (hey, NASA, time to get to work, and find us a new place to live).

The reality is that, as always (think May 21, 2011 and the "Apocalypse of Mr. Camping"), all the fear mongering is purely done for profit: books, movies, lectures, and don't forget big donations for churches and cults that spread the crazy news. As long as enough people fall for it, because they think people a few thousand years ago knew more about our universe than we do now, it'll continue, and I'm sure on December 22nd, 2012, we'll hear of a new date that will bring fire and brimstone to our little, insignificant planet.

In the meantime, I think we should start worrying about our own human-made apocalypses, like the global warming. Hurricane Sandy gave us a preview of what's to come, and given the latest news ("Rapidly melting polar ice raises concerns of rising seas", "Climate Change Threatens Long-Term Sustainability of Great Plains", and "This Drought's No Dry Run: Lessons Of The Dust Bowl"), and the current simulations ("What Could Disappear"), our children and grandchildren are not looking at a bright future.