Thursday, May 7, 2015

Wake me up when September ends, Part Deux

Dude, do you even science?
So anyway, I'm watching the conspiracy theorist* agitation over September of this year with growing amusement. Because not only has Isaac Newton been added to the chorus of voices that say something really, really bad is coming in September, but the September prophecies are now starting to contradict Science.

For example, the above screenshot is taken from about the 11 minute mark of a video that assures us that a Confirmed-2.5 Mile Wide Comet (is) Headed Toward Earth, (complete) With Chilling Hellish Mystery Sounds. And Hellish Mystery Sounds are not to be despised.

But this is a magical comet in that
1) we only know within a 2-week period when it will hit us, but
2) we know exactly where it will hit: 200 mi. off of Brazil in the Atlantic Ocean

And we
1) are seeing Earth changes because of its gravitational pull**
2) even though it's only 2.5 miles wide and is still squillions of miles away from us.

In other words, it's bullshit.

But that's really not what's of interest to me.  I never bothered following the apocalyptic ravings of Y2K.  Since I was a Y2K project manager, I understood the risks and urged people to make reasonable preparations in case we didn't finish our work in time.***  And I never bothered with 2012 prophecies, mostly because I don't give a flying freak about the Mayans****. 

But I'm gonna watch September 2015. Not because I think anything will happen therein, but because I'm really interested in what people will do when nothing happens. With the Pope coming and a blood moon and a meteor and Climate Chaos and everything ill prophesied, there's not going to be any doubt as to whether they were right or wrong, and if they are wrong, I wonder what they'll do.

That said, America's got a shitstorm a-brewin', and September is as good a month as any for it to arrive.

* A conspiracy theorist is a person who accuses the government of malfeasance before events occur.  An historian is a person who does so afterwards. 
** While we all know that gravitation is inversely proportional to distance, I'm gonna let Huck run the actual numbers, because he's qualified and I've been drinking.
*** FWIW, my prepping fanaticism does not arise from hypotheticals or even Y2K but from a freak KC snowstorm in late 1998 that caught me unawares and emasculated me for a week until the electricity came back on. Never again.
**** I haven't even watched that movie where global warming causes global cooling and Lane Meyers flies a plane, I guess. Mostly because I don't watch movies.


  1. They have been prophesying the end since before Christ. And many Christians thought the end was imminent shortly after Christ was crucified. Christians, for the most part, stopped doing that until the first couple hundred years of American history, though in small groups. It looks like the pagans are back at it. Oh, sure, pagans and now atheists have gotten back into the game. I'm not sure if I would classify y2k, 2012, or this, as pagan or atheist, though there is a lot of mix and match in those groups.

    As for me? Well, it is coming down. But it's not global... from what I am seeing. Or, I mean, not the end of man and time and earth. Just, most likely, the end of an advancement, the world as we have known it. No biggy, in one sense, as long as you aren't living in a death trap, have a bit of prep done, a clear head, a few arms, and family and friends to group with. A lot of caveats, but then there always were, still are, it's just most aren't aware of the ones they live with... just doing them blindly, and most aren't ready for new hoops to jump through. Can't, or won't, even see their possibility.

    All good. One way or another this once respectable, now obscene, civilization will come to a screeching halt. Actually I wonder if many seeking the end are just hoping that because they know changes are coming and have no other way to cope, except that we all die. If the real end is nigh? You will see catastrophic flooding, earthquakes in places they don't happen, volcanoes popping up, oceans turning red, and much else. These won't be out in the middle of the ocean, or in national parks or other out-of-the-way places, these will happen in populated areas, devastating cities and populations as if all Sodoms suddenly became the target of mother nature. Oh, you'll know when the end is nigh. So far, I haven't seen a single set of even minor signs. But the economy is a dead redwood giant forest in the center of the population centers of man. Just waiting for the right wrong wind, some other strong weather pattern, and earthquake, or other economic, social, or political upset to knock it all down. That is going to happen, sooner rather than later.

  2. I've got news for you chief, we've both been drinking.
    But I'll give it a go anyhow.
    First, the mass of the comet.
    For this estimate, I note that the comet a team of scientists recently landed a rover on is just a haircut smaller than 2.5 miles, not that anyone remembers anything beyond the aloha shirt the team's spokesman was wearing, Because Feminism, but that comet's estimated mass is about 10^13 kg.
    The mass of the earth is just shy of 6X10^24 kg.
    The distance is also a problem, since I don't see it readily available anywhere.
    I'll estimate.
    The comet from the probe landing was traveling at a rate of about 135,000 kilometers per hour. Multiplied by 24, that's just shy of 3.25 million kilometers per day. To arrive about mid-September, it has to be at least 150 days away, or 486 million kilometers away*.
    Given all of that, your equation looks like this:

    6.6726 x 10-11N-m2/kg2 (5,973,600,000,000,000,000,000,000 * 10,000,000,000,000 / 486,000,000)

    Crunch it and you get just shy of 16876 newtons of force, which is roughly enough to move a small 8-person airplane 1 meter.

    *As the crow flies, sure. While i assume the object is in some kind of rotational orbit that puts the object closer to us, and that orbit will intersect ours,there is absolutely no information out there on where or what that orbit is.

    1. I definitely need to step up my drinking. Dang kids!

    2. While I calculated correctly I didn't write it out here properly.
      It's 486,000,000^2 not 486,000,000.

  3. I was going to calculate how much energy the resulting collision would have. But then I realized I'm not a nerd*.

    *Actually I did, but I didn't know what direction it was coming from and didn't know whether I should add or subtract the earth's rotational velocity from the comet's unknown velocity. I then thought I could post a range of energies. I came up with between about 1 million and 2.5 million megatons.**

    ** Maybe I should finish The Hammer of God.