Saturday, March 24, 2007

T Minus 5 Days: 1984 + 23



Here's one way to make an entrance! From the original Apple Computer 1984 ad, directed by Ridley Scott. The audience is numbed into obedience by the image of Big Brother and his dark energy. The woman runs into the auditorium pursued by secret police who would stop her from speaking. She flings her hammer into the screen, and dark energy explodes in the light of knowledge. Recently the ad was revived with a certain American presidential candidate in the place of Big Brother, but we will keep politics out of this.

London was George Orwell's favourite city. Here he lived the life of a penniless writer, penning "Down and Out in London and Paris." His experience in the Spanish Civil War made him a committed socialist, but World War 2 showed him the evil of totalitarianism. Orwell and London survived the Nazi bombing together. Shortly after the War ended he finished "Animal Farm." Orwell's masterwork "1984" was published while he was dying of tuberculosis at University College Hospital, Bloomsbury.

When the year 1984 arrived many nations were in the grip of totalitarianism. Most people believed it was self-perpetuating and would last indefinitely. Within a few years most of the world would throw off communism's yoke. Surviving communists had to scurry into their spider holes, like in Cornell. In their misery, they are reduced to sending nasty e-mails at 12:51.

The threat of totalitarianism will long be with us. In science it is tempting to fall behind a consensus, repeating that planets revolve around the Earth or the speed of light is constant. As we have seen this week, communists love this sort of obedience. Totalitarianism will take many forms and guises, even hiding behind the mask of religion. The events of 7/7 reminded us that London has endured bombs before. They fear us not when we are wrong, but when we are right.

Imperial College Press Release: "The theory that Earth once underwent a prolonged time of extreme global freezing has been dealt a blow by new evidence that periods of warmth occurred during this so-called 'Snowball Earth' era."

Professor Philip Allen of Imperial College London's Department of Earth Science and Engineering, explains: "If the Earth had become fully frozen for a long period of time, these climatic cycles could not exist – the Earth would have changed into a bleak world with almost no weather, since no evaporation from the oceans could take place, and little snowfall would be possible. In fact, once fully frozen, it is difficult to create the right conditions to cause a thaw, since much of the incoming solar radiation would be reflected back by the snow and ice. The evidence of climatic cycles is therefore hostile to the idea of ‘Snowball Earth'."

This also applies to earlier periods in Earth history. These results cast severe doubt upon a "Faint Young Sun." A better theory of cosmology sheds light upon problems of Earth, like our climate. See Thursday's post!

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2 Comments:

Blogger Ken said...

Good luck with the speech!

6:51 PM  
Blogger L. Riofrio said...

Thank you for your supportive post, Ken. Things have been busy, but I just got around to putting you on the blogroll.

6:41 AM  

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