Wednesday 14 October 2009

XXII ... on wilful paranoia :-)

Up, Down.

“The thirteenth pik will be finished (on) Four Ahaw, the third of K’ank’in. [undeciphered]. The descent of Bolon Yokte K’u - Nine Foot Tree Gods - to [undeciphered].”
     Robert Sitler, reference 2b below.

Maya Tortuguero Monument Six HieroglyphsMayaMayaMaya

ok, it started here ... well, not quite ... it started at the end of the last post thinking about Pierrot Le Fou blowing his head off at the end of the movie, and saying, "Hold on, wait a minute ... no, no ... " BOOM!

Pierrot Le Fouthen I found the BBC article on HEMP, well, 'hemp' and published on the 13th and all, so I checked with my quantum chemist friend who said, "Yep, it's for real. Known about since the 60s."

Uh Oh!
... and sure enough, it's there to read and know about right in Wikipedia: Electromagnetic pulse & Starfish Prime (the 1962 high-altitude nuclear test in the Pacific)

Lawrence Solomon, The DeniersLawrence Solomon, The DeniersLawrence Solomon, The DeniersI picked up Lawrence Solomon's book, The Deniers a week or so ago, this business of being 'even handed' may be some kind of mental virus, I don't know anymore, but I thought I would see what the deniers were saying - and what he wrote upset me, there are no real arguments in it, the best I can guess is that he needed a payment for his children's education, or has some kind of deep psychosis that requires strokes at the hands of Republican politicians of a certain stripe, can't say, but still, it did upset me ... and I wondered about that upset?

almost certainly NOT Martin Rees, just looks a bit like himMartin ReesMartin ReesMartin Reesthen I read Martin Rees' Our Final Century, and another strange thing happened - Rees' thesis is that it is either extinction or migration into space for humankind, there is a symmetry to it since we are guessing that in 5 billion years or so the sun will go postal ... presto-whiffo! wipeout! nevermind that 5 billion is a number well beyond the human IQ (Imagination Quotient) range ... but viewed in this context, notions of 'populating other planets' are sort'a fun, real-life science fiction, yeah, bring it on, "Cut it, pave it, paint it green! Mars is Next!" and I was right back there in the 60s buying refrigerators & cars & Cheeze Whiz ... that's when it hit me as strange ...

maybe you had to be there, fossicking with me in the internet humus, whatever.

here is Martin Rees flogging his book on YouTube (the introduction is neat).

Apolinario Chile Pixtunsomehow I got around to 2012, stumbled on this, indeed, there is even a sort of scientific consensus that the Tortuguero hieroglyphs do not call for the end of the world on December 21, 2012, even the Mayan shaman agrees.

so is all this angst nothing more than that great Yakumama serpent revitalizing Judeo-Christian guilt up its Kundalini? is that it? or the psychology of a fat old fart recognizing mortality and doing a transference of the old yin/yang micro/macrocosm into a general death? memories of beautiful young nubiles nudging the Chakra Zero prostate into life one more time?

keeping our good Pierrot Le Fou in mind as well eh?

Mr. Jinx and Miss Lucy, they jumped in the lake.
I'm not that eager to ... make a mistake.

     Bob Dylan, Things Have Changed, 1999.

a-and here we have some late-breaking good news: U.S. Headed for Massive Decline in Carbon Emissions, Lester R. Brown/Earth Policy Institute, October 14, 2009 - carbon emissions down 9% in two years, wouldn't it be a hoot if gravity simply prevailed, emissions reduced by 80% by 2020, CO2 went back to 350 ppm, and the climate did not change dramatically, and our grandchildren went along to picnics by the pond in their electric cars - and the deniers could all say, "We told you so!" :-)

a short exerpt from Nevil Shute's On The Beach:
     Mary got to her feet. 'I'm going to have a drink,' she said firmly. 'I think you'd better have one, too.' And when that was adjusted and they were sitting with glasses in their hands, she asked curiously, 'It must be funny, being jealous of someone that's dead?'

     The girl took a drink from her glass and sat staring at the fire. 'I'm not jealous of her,' she said at last. 'I don't think so. Her name is Sharon, like in the Bible. I want to meet her. She must be a very wonderful person, I think. You see, he's such a practical man.'

     'Don't you want to marry him?'

     The girl sat for a long time in silence. I don't know,' she said at last. 'I don't know if I do or not. If it wasn't for all this ... I'd play every dirty trick in the book to get him away from her. I don't think I'll ever be happy with anyone else. But then, there's not much time left now to be happy with anyone.'

     'There's three or four months, anyway,' said Mary. 'I saw a motto once, one of those things you hang on the wall to inspire you. It said, "Don't worry - it may never happen."'

     'I think this is going to happen all right,' Moira remarked. She picked up the poker and began playing with it. 'If it was for a lifetime it'd be different,' she said. 'It'd be worth doing her dirt if it meant having Dwight for good, and children, and a home, and a full life. I'd go through anything if I could see a chance of that. But to do her dirt just for three months' pleasure and nothing at the end of it - well, that's another thing. I may be a loose woman, but I don't know that I'm all that loose.' She looked up, smiling. 'Anyway, I don't believe that I could do it in the time. I think he'd take a lot of prising away from her.'

     'Oh dear,' said Mary. "Things are difficult, aren't they!'

     'Couldn't be worse,' Moira agreed. 'I think I'll probably die an old maid.'

1. 'Nuclear threat' to power grids, BBC, 13 October 2009.
2. 2012 is not the end of the world, Mayan elder insists, Telegraph, 11 Oct 2009.
     2a. Comments on the 2012 text on Tortuguero Monument 6 and Bolon Yokte K'u,
               John Major Jenkins, May 2006.
     2b. December 21st. 2012 and the Maya World, Robert Sitler, 2007.
     2c. What Will Not Happen in 2012, Stephen Houston, December 20 2008.

'Nuclear threat' to power grids, BBC, 13 October 2009.

Scientists have warned that Iran and North Korea could produce a weapon capable of paralysing Western electricity grids for months or years. Experts fear that a missile-launched nuclear bomb exploded above the earth's atmosphere could cause a catastrophe. They told the British government that high-altitude electromagnetic pulses could lead to an "economic shutdown".

US government adviser Avi Schnurr said efforts to protect the US electricity grid had already begun. Mr Schnurr is president of the International EMP Council, a coalition based in the US, which aims to stimulate efforts to protect against the risk of attacks using electromagnetic devices. Those feeding into the network include scientists from around the world, governments, corporations and NGOs.

Communications failure

On Monday, the British Parliamentary Defence Select Committee heard how a nuclear warhead launched from a medium range missile and exploded 20 miles above the earth could cripple an entire country's power grid.

The BBC's security correspondent Frank Gardner said this was called HEMP (High Altitude Electro Magnetic Pulse) and its effects could, in theory, bring a country to its knees.

At the briefing held in London, Mr Schnurr said Britain was still "just at the thinking and planning" stage and more action needed to be taken.

Mr Schnurr said that power, water and phones could fail. Cars could run out of fuel, cities could be gridlocked and the economy could in effect be "shut down". Recovery, he said, could take between four to eight years.

The scientists, who advise the US government, said the biggest concern for defence planners was the threat from so-called "rogue states" like Iran and North Korea. The latter has already tested a nuclear weapon and fired a missile over the Pacific Ocean. Iran denies seeking a nuclear bomb but critics say it has concealed much of its nuclear programme to date.

2012 is not the end of the world, Mayan elder insists, Telegraph, 11 Oct 2009.

The year 2012 will not bring the end of the world, a Mayan elder has insisted, despite claims that a Mayan calendar shows that time will "run out" on December 21 of that year.

Apolinario Chile Pixtun is tired of being bombarded with frantic questions about the end of the world. "I came back from England last year and, man, they had me fed up with this stuff," he said.

A significant time period for the Mayans does end on the date, and enthusiasts have found a series of astronomical alignments they say coincide in 2012, including one that happens roughly only once every 25,800 years.

But most archaeologists, astronomers and Mayans say the only thing likely to hit Earth is a meteor shower of New Age philosophy, pop astronomy, internet doomsday rumours and TV specials such as one on the History Channel which mixes "predictions" from Nostradamus and the Mayans and asks: "Is 2012 the year the cosmic clock finally winds down to zero days, zero hope?"

Still, things are only likely to get worse for Mr Pixtun. Next month Hollywood's "2012" opens in cinemas, featuring earthquakes, meteor showers and a tsunami dumping an aircraft carrier on the White House.

At Cornell University, Ann Martin, who runs the "Curious? Ask an Astronomer" website, says people are scared.

"It's too bad that we're getting e-mails from fourth-graders who are saying that they're too young to die," Ms Martin said. "We had a mother of two young children who was afraid she wouldn't live to see them grow up."

Mr Pixtun, a Guatemalan, says the doomsday theories spring from Western, not Mayan ideas.

But hysteria surrounding 2012 does have some grains of archaeological basis. One of them is Monument Six.

Found at an obscure ruin in southern Mexico during highway construction in the 1960s, the stone tablet almost did not survive; the site was largely paved over and parts of the tablet were looted.

The inscription describes something that is supposed to occur in 2012 involving Bolon Yokte, a mysterious Mayan god associated with both war and creation. However, erosion and a crack in the stone make the end of the passage almost illegible.

Guillermo Bernal, an archaeologist at Mexico's National Autonomous University, believes the eroded message is: "He will descend from the sky".

But Mr Bernal also notes there are other inscriptions at Mayan sites for dates far beyond 2012 - including one that roughly translates into the year 4772.

The Mayan civilization, based in modern day Mexico and Central America, reached its height from 300 AD to 900 AD and had a talent for astronomy

Its Long Count calendar begins in 3,114 BC, marking time in roughly 394-year periods known as Baktuns. Thirteen was a significant, sacred number for the Mayas, and the 13th Baktun ends around Dec 21, 2012.

"It's a special anniversary of creation," said David Stuart, a specialist in Mayan epigraphy at the University of Texas at Austin. "The Maya never said the world is going to end, they never said anything bad would happen necessarily, they're just recording this future anniversary on Monument Six."

But some say the Mayans knew another secret: the Earth's axis wobbles, slightly changing the alignment of the stars every year. Once every 25,800 years, the sun lines up with the centre of our Milky Way galaxy on a winter solstice, the sun's lowest point in the horizon.

That will happen on Dec. 21, 2012, when the sun appears to rise in the same spot where the bright centre of galaxy sets.

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