Will Global Warming cause the Earth to Explode?

Global warming is certainly a “hot” topic at the moment ( 🙂 silly pun….sorry…)

We have the scientists on one side, laying out the facts as we understand them, presenting the research, and calling for action before the harm we’ve already done to our environment becomes irreversible. We are all familiar with those arguments – we see them in the news, in the scientific publications and on Discovery Channel every day.

On the other side, we have the deniers, flatly refusing to accept that the climate is changing, or that human activity is causing these (probably permanent) changes. Some even claim that their god would never allow the climate to change, because their holy book tells them so:

Genesis 8:22, ‘while the earth remaineth seed time and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease,’

(Nobody is saying that climate change will result in the cessation of cold, heat, summer, winter, seed time or harvests anyway, so I don’t see the relevance).

Climate CHANGE is not climate ABOLITION – perhaps these people need to get their heads out their backsides and read something OTHER than the bible?

They were wrong about THIS too!

I was very amused to read this article which claims that global warming will cause the entire earth to EXPLODE!

“Bioresonant” claims that there is a nuclear reactor at the core of the earth, and it requires cooling (as all such devices do). Unfortunately, the anthropogenic warming of the atmosphere is preventing the cooling of the reactor – and pretty soon we will have a runaway nuclear explosion, which will destroy the entire planet!

Doctor Tom Chalko, MSc PhD,  published his theory in the NU Journal of Discovery in April 2001. (Chalko appears to be the only contributor to this “Journal.”) He maintains that life on Earth is only possible because the core is efficiently cooled; there is a balance between the interior heat, the heat received from the Sun, and the heat radiated away into space.  If the atmosphere becomes too polluted, too much heat from the Sun will be trapped at the surface,  the interior cannot cool down – and the result?

The most serious consequence of such a ”meltdown” could be centrifugal segregation of unstable isotopes in the molten part of the spinning planetary core. Such segregation can ”enrich” the nuclear fuel in the core to the point of creating conditions for a chain reaction and a gigantic atomic explosion.

He claims that the polar icecaps are melting from underneath (increased volcanic activity due to the rising temperature of the core) not because the air around them, and the water they’re floating in, is getting warmer. (That’s why an ice block melts, floating in a glass of white wine, on a warm day – it’s the nuclear fission reaction at the CORE!)

Do you doubt that an entire planet can explode? No, really it can! Greek mythology confirms it! The planet Phaeton disappeared “in a flash” – that must have been a runaway nuclear fission explosion at its core, caused by alien-induced atmospheric warming, right? What else could it have been?

(According to Wikipedia, in Greek mythology, the name Phaeton was the personification of the planet Jupiter.  I know from my own personal experience that Jupiter can be incredibly bright sometimes – perhaps it was hit by a large comet and became temporarily even brighter? Jupiter tends to attract large objects entering the Solar System because of its mass…. the comet Schumacher Levy strike is a perfect example.)

Dr Chalko goes on to claim that earthquakes are becoming more frequent and more violent as a result of the increasing heat of the nuclear reactor within our planet. He also claims that the core is spinning 4% faster than the earth spins on its own axis. And, the centrifugal force of this spinning is causing the radioactive isotopes to accumulate in the centre and they will soon reach a critical mass and we will have a NUCLEAR MELTDOWN! There will be nowhere for that heat to go —- volcanoes will explode, the atmosphere will be darkened, we are all going to DIE!!!

Not.

Anyone with half a brain can see right through this argument, but apparently not everyone HAS half a brain…. When the theory first popped up, some people actually took it seriously!

So, let’s look at the facts:

  • The earth has a solid ( mostly iron) core, surrounded by a molten mantle and a thin, solid crust.
  • The solid core is hot – hotter than the surface of the Sun – but that is only about 6 000 degrees C. (The Sun’s real heat is not at the surface, but in the centre (15 million C) and  the corona surrounding it which reaches 1 to 3 million C)
  • The Earth’s inner core is rotating slightly faster than the outer core, but it would take more than 1000 years to “lap” the planet (not 20 – 25 days, as it would if it were rotating 4% faster than the rest of the planet!)
  • Most of the earth’s heat is stored in the mantle, which is still cooling from when the planet first formed 4.5 billion years ago or so.
  • The inner core is cooling down, and this is causing it to expand by about 1cm every 1000 years. This expansion releases heat which is also warming the mantle.
  • Most (about 90%) of the heat of the earth’s interior is the result of the radioactive decay of isotopes such as Potassium 40, Plutonium 235 and 238, and Thorium 232, contained within the mantle and the crust.
  • In several billion years the earth will have cooled completely and will be cold like the Moon – but the Sun will probably have expanded into a red giant star by then anyway, so we don’t need to worry – we’ll all be toast. (So much for Genesis 8:22)

I’m sure you are relieved to hear that there is NO nuclear reactor accumulating fissionable amounts of unstable isotopes at the centre of our fair planet  🙂

As for the atmosphere – global warming has so far caused a relatively small overall increase in global atmospheric temperature. Yes, it is sufficient to cause accelerated melting of the ice caps and glaciers, but it is not enough to prevent the cooling of the mantle.

Has volcanic activity increased recently? In the last four decades, between 50 and 70 volcanic eruptions were recorded per year. Since 1790, the average number of large eruptions per year is between 1 and 4. There is no evidence that inefficient cooling of the mantle might be causing a greater number of volcanic eruptions. (There is some research available that suggests that melting glaciers remove pressure on the mantle, and this may cause increased up-welling of mantle material, and  increased volcanic activity).

Vatnajokull Eruption

Global warming is a threat to the way humans and animals currently live on earth. Rising sea levels will flood coastal towns and drown small islands. Many species will no doubt become extinct unless they can adapt to a warmer environment, and those that DO adapt will become more plentiful.

The threat is to the inhabitants of the Earth, NOT to the Earth itself. “Mother Earth” will continue to exist – she has survived meteor strikes, strikes by minor planets, blasts from supernovae, magnetic field reversals, solar mass-ejections, super-volcanoes and more. She can survive the loss of our greedy, violent species, along with many others, and continue on in her orbit about her bright yellow star, for many millennia to come.

Global warming is a HUMAN problem. WE are the ones who will suffer, and it’s up to US to do something about it. The alternative is to adapt, along with the other animals….

* * * * *

P.S. Tom Chalko’s ideas are the wierdest Global Warming-related ideas I’ve ever come across.

If you have heard of any other strange ideas about the changing climate, please leave a comment – I’d love to hear from you 🙂

 

 

Advertisements

Homeopathy takes another hit!

I was surprised when I walked into my local pharmacy the other day, and saw a whole rack of Oscillococcinum – a well-known homeopathic “medicine” for flu-like symptoms  (headaches, body aches, chills and fever).

I say “surprised” because I’d read only a few weeks ago that the manufacturers of Occillococcinum  agreed to spend upwards of $12 million to settle several class-action lawsuits for falsely advertising the supposed benefits of this preparation. They have agreed to refund consumers their money, change the product labelling and include a disclaimer

Something along the lines of: “This sugar pill won’t cure you of anything or alleviate any symptoms. You’re an idiot. We’re rich” ?

Why are they still selling it in its original packaging here in South Africa, and can local consumers  get their money back if they are not satisfied?

For anyone who is not familiar with Oscillo, it is a homeopathic preparation which claims to contain an active ingredient “anas barbariae hepatis et cordis extractum.”

In English, that’s “extract of the liver and heart of Muscovy duck.”

In 1919 a flu-epidemic physician observed the random oscillations of tiny water bubbles in the tissues of flu patients, under his microscope, due to Brownian motion. He found these “oscillating bacteria” in the tissues of all ill patients, and thought he had discovered the cause of illnesses such as cancer, eczema, measles and tuberculosis. He searched for these “bacteria” in many animals, and believed he had identified them in the liver of a duck. Nowadays, Muscovy Duck liver is supposed to contain the highest concentrations of these non-existent oscillating “cocci” (although nobody has actually seen them since 1919).

There is no evidence whatsoever that the liver and heart of a Muscovy duck, or any other duck for that matter, is beneficial in the treatment of colds and flu symptoms. Even if it was, the way Oscillo is manufactured guarantees that there is no active ingredient in any dose.

The extract of duck heart and liver is diluted in the ratio 1:100 two hundred times, so the chance of there being even one molecule of that ingredient in any one dose of Oscillo is almost zero. It’s like tossing an aspirin into the ocean, and coming back a year later for a drink of ocean water to cure your headache!

So if there is not even one molecule of an “active” ingredient, and the rest of the 1 gram tablet consists of 85% sucrose and 15% lactose (that’s 100% sugar!), how does it work to lessen your symptoms of colds and flu?

Simply put – it doesn’t!  Colds and flu tend to get better by themselves within 6 – 7 days, and any preparation you take (usually after a few days of feeling grotty) will appear to work. There’s that famous Placebo effect again!

Homeopathy relies on the patient to believe it will work.

It has to, because there is no rational reason to think that the “memory” of the water that held the extract of the non-existent duck’s liver sprinkled over your 1 gram sugar pill, and long-since evaporated anyway, can cure you of a viral infection!

Thanks to the efforts of those who filed lawsuits, and those  bloggers who spoke out against this pseudoscientific claptrap, consumers in America can now get their money back.

It remains to be seen whether South African consumers will be as fortunate.

Photography: Clarens, Free State.

When I first started writing this blog, I planned to include some of my favourite photos, taken over the past year…. So, here they are!

My family likes to holiday in Clarens, a small town in the northern Free State, in South Africa. It’s a lovely little place, jam-packed with art shops, family restaurants, quaint curio shops, antique clothing shops… all the stuff I love to look at. As an added bonus, the town in nestled in the mountains, and is a stone’s throw away from the magnificent Golden Gate National Park.

Oh yeah, they also brew their own beer – a delightful light lager you can drink all day, and then still find your way home without falling in a ditch.

The place we normally stay in is on a golf course. They have the most beautiful little dam where I love to go at sunrise and sunset, and am often rewarded with shots like these:

1. I was up before sunrise, taking photos in the very soft pre-dawn light. As the sun was rising, I was facing the other way…then turned around and saw THIS beautiful sight!

2. This is taken later in the morning – a favourite spot for a bit of lazy fishing….

 

Image

3.  The same day

4. Six months later, in the same spot. Taken in the evening. I love the colours of the sky and water!

Just to the south of Clarens is the magnificent Golden Gate National Park. Absolutely pristine Drakensburg area, and a wonderful place for photography.

I’ll show you those pics next time 🙂

******************************************************************************************************************************************

 

For those who enjoy the technical details:

  1. Fuji Finepix S 9500   f/3.1 1/70sec ISO200  8mm focal length
  2. Fuji Finepix S 9500   f/3.1 1/150sec ISO200 8mm focal length
  3. Fuji Finepix S 9500   f/3.4  1/100sec ISO200 11mm focal length
  4. Canon PowerShot SX30 IS f/4 1/400sec ISO160 4mm focal length
By cathywagnerblog Posted in Nature

SQUID, chakras and other assorted electromagnetic Woo

I am surprised at how many people I meet believe that the human body is surrounded by a large internally generated electro-magnetic field. They use this field as an explanation for New Age woo such as Auras, Chakras, Ghosts, Reiki, Chi, and so on.

Let’s examine the idea.

First off, I have done quite an extensive search and I can find nothing I would call a CREDIBLE source that even mentions such a field, in the way the Woo Brigade describe it.

I did find credible information that confirms that tiny electrical currents in the brain travel from neuron to neuron, and when they reach a muscle, trigger chemical reactions that make the muscle fibres contract or relax. This is what makes your heart beat, allows you to move about, and is generally accepted to be pretty essential for life.

As for magnetic fields – every cell in your body has ion channels that allow ions to pass through their surface, which results in a tiny voltage and creates a tiny magnetic field. This magnetic field is very, very weak. Much weaker than any magnetic field in your environment.

Non-credible sources, such as this one,  claim that “biomagnetic fields” (pulsing magnetic fields emitted by all tissues and organs of the body) surrounding the body have been measured by a Superconducting Quantum Interference Device (SQUID), and that these fields can be used to diagnose and treat illness.

A SQUID is a highly sensitive scientific instrument, and is used in medicine to measure very weak magnetic fields, such as the neural activity of the brain and heart. The diagnosis part of the claim is at least partially correct – what about the “treatment” part?

Apparently, the magnetic fields around the body provide a more accurate picture of its physiology and pathology than conventional medical instruments do. And, huge pulsating biomagnetic fields emanating from the hands of therapeutic touch “healers” can “jump-start” the soft and hard tissues – such as bones, skin, nerves, capillaries and ligaments –  at specific “frequencies.”

Don’t bother looking for scientific evidence of these wild and fanciful claim anywhere – but you can obtain a list of the articles detailing the “research” from the publishers – Nature’s Own Research Association.

Norah? No, just NORA, don’t panic!

Acupuncture treatment relies on it, and Chakras are also supposed to be a manifestation of this electromagnetic field. Here is an ACTUAL series of exercises, sent to me by a Chakra “healing expert” (At first, they wanted me to pay to get this nonsense, but as I haven’t responded yet, they have dropped their price to zero – because they’re “feeling generous”. No, they think if they rope me in I’ll buy something else of theirs down the line. I won’t.)

“THE CHAKRA ENERGY PATCHING EXERCISE

When there is a leak, you have to patch it. Many people are energy-depleted because they are not able to hold enough life force energy or “chi.” (I thought it was more likely low levels of glucose in the blood?) In this energy condition, you are flushing energy down and away from you, much like a toilet flushes water down. In order to maintain good energy health, you want energy spiraling (sic) up into your base chakra. Here’s one way you can do it in 4 easy steps:

  1. Close your eyes and imagine you can see the energy leaking out of your tailbone (coccyx)
  2. Imagine a patch large enough to cover the skin
  3. Place the patch over the leak
  4. Imagine you go beneath the energy and reverse the flow to spiral it up into your body through your tailbone 

THE CROWN CHAKRA EXERCISE

Why is this important? Life force energy is also fed to us through our crown chakra. (By whom? And how?) The crown chakra is located on the top of your head. We maintain a higher life force energy when our crown chakra is open and active. (What does that mean, exactly?) When the crown chakra is closed or weak, we feel a lack of vitality and direction in our lives. As a result we look to others rather than our own spiritual compass for guidance. Here’s a simple, but very effective way to open up your crown chakra to receive energy in abundance:

  1. Place the fingertips of each of your hands on the top of your forehead when your hairline starts. Your fingertips should be touching.
  2. Now pull your fingertips away from each other as though you were opening up your crown
  3. Move your fingers 2 inches above the starting point and repeat the same movement
  4. Do this over the entire crown of your head until you reach the nape of your neck
  5. Take three deep breaths to anchor in this opening (what????)

THE PERSONAL POWER CHAKRA EXERCISE

Disruption of the flow of your life force energy occurs when a chakra is frozen or weak. It is common for individuals to have a frozen or weak third chakra. The third chakra represents your will power, confidence and sense of self. This results in a lack of confidence and will to move forward enthusiastically with towards (sic) your goals. The third chakra energy wheel is located 2 inches above the navel in the solar plexus area. These simple steps will help you activate your third chakra effectively:

  1. Rub your palms together swiftly creating static electricity (actually just warmth, from friction)
  2. Place the palm of your right hand on your solar plexus, rotating your palm in a clockwise direction while repeating: “I am powerful, I am the will of creating (sic) what I want.”
  3. Repeat these steps 2 or 3 more times”
If I want to learn more about how to heal myself using ONLY my imagination, she has an entire training course, available on an easy 90-day payment plan… Of course!
As a lady I love and respect very much likes to say : “Once again, it all comes down to money!”

If you managed to read through all the chakra exercises without falling off your chair laughing, or falling asleep, you would have noticed a couple of things:

  1. there is an assumption that you have an energy field which leaks out of various parts of your body
  2. this assumed energy field can be manipulated, and “put back” so to speak
  3. this manipulation is achieved through your imagination and rubbing your hands on various parts of your body
  4. chakra healing can’t heal bad grammar and spelling

Unfortunately, wishful thinking won’t make this fairy tale come true!

Nobody have EVER seen or discovered a chakra energy wheel. Take a human body, cut open the areas these energy wheels are supposed to reside in – you won’t find anything more exciting than bones, muscles, blood and nerves. Wave your metal scalpel over the area of the supposed chakra – do you feel any little electromagnetic tug? I thought not.

Chakra energy healing, like reiki and other therapeutic touch therapies, is nothing more than faith healing – you have to believe in it to get the benefit of the placebo effect. As long as there’s nothing really wrong with you, the placebo effect may even work. (Headaches, stress, backache, just getting old – all respond well to placebos)

However, if you have a serious illness, you should consult a doctor. You don’t have to have faith in your doctor or his medicine for it to work. That’s because real scientists, doing real research for many centuries, have by trial and replication and peer review, developed treatments for medical conditions that work, whether you believe they will or not. Human organs don’t decide for themselves whether to respond to surgery or not. Bacteria and viruses don’t decide for themselves whether to respond to antibiotics and antivirals.

Surgery, or medication, is infinitely more likely to help your heart condition than waving your hands over your chest and believing your energy field will sort out your cardiac problems!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In fact, I will put money on it – when you’re lying on the floor, writhing in agony, shooting pains in your chest, numbness in your left arm – there is NO WAY you’re going to say “Bring me my chakra / faith healer” !

You’re going to reach for the nitroglycerine tablets and oxygen mask, and beg to be taken to the nearest hospital. In an ambulance. By a paramedic. And when you get there, you’re going to ask for a cardiologist, not a  “therapeutic touch healer” to wave their hands over you and manipulate your electromagnetic field,  or a priest to pray for the miraculous restoration of a healthy heart!

 
When it really counts, and your life is on the line, do you really think there’s an “alternative therapy” that can do better than conventional scientific medicine?
If you hold that belief, I once again refer you to What’s the Harm. Look up your favourite “alternative” treatment. Read the true stories of what reliance on that treatment has done to people.
Do you STILL believe your “therapy” is better than scientific medicine?

World Class Psychic – a true story

My previous blog posts about Norah the “Psychic” (January Archive) seem to have struck a painful chord with some people.

In particular, one gentleman contacted me with a very unhappy story, which I will relate below (I have asked his permission to share this):

Joe (not his real name) is a pensioner. He suffered the tragic loss of his wife on Christmas Eve 2009. They had been married for 42 years. When she passed away, he was devastated, and felt there was a huge gap in his life that he just couldn’t fill.

Joe saw Norah’s advert on the internet, and responded in the hope that Norah would help him to find a way to get nearer to his deceased wife. He was desperate, lonely and in a very vulnerable state.

Like many of us, he received Norah’s seemingly heartfelt, personal communications, and like many people he was taken in by her promises.

Joe bought everything Norah asked him to buy, was deceived into spending almost all of his money on expensive “essential” purchases, and then after 10 months her “help” abruptly stopped.

He is now penniless except for a state pension, and at this writing he is in hospital. His words to me were: “How can what this woman does be legal?”

Joe, my heart goes out to you! To lose someone you have loved for most of your life, and then to be taken advantage of by this unscrupulous psychic in such a cold and heartless way….. 

Unfortunately, Norah’s first, and most exciting, email has a very tiny disclaimer printed on the bottom which states:

The information provided on Premium Astrology.com and in my readings, e-mails, e-books, or other materials you might receive from PremiumAstrology.com, is for entertainment purposes only. Obviously, we cannot guarantee the accuracy of astrological or divinatory information, and we are not responsible for how you interpret or apply it.

If you are struggling with serious problems, including chronic illness, mental instability, or legal issues, please consult with your local registered health care or legal professional as soon as possible.

In other words, please use common sense. Please also carefully read the full Terms of Service. (Emphasis mine)

This disclaimer appears AFTER no less than eight invitations to you, dear reader, to “Click Here Now” and navigate AWAY from the page with the disclaimer to register for “THE MOST COMPLETE, DETAILED AND PRECISE ASTRAL READING OF YOUR ENTIRE LIFE”. Promises of great wealth falling into your lap during your once-in-a-lifetime Transit Period, which is due to start is just a few weeks! *Gasp*

If you do manage to persevere all the way to the bottom of the page without being dazzled by the promises of luck, wealth, love and happiness, and click on the “Terms of Service” link you get a very definite re-statement of the disclaimer, and much much more…. Boy, these people are not taking any chances!

So, Joe, I’m sorry to say, I don’t think there’s much chance you’ll ever get your money back from this World Class con artist…..

Please let this serve as a warning to anyone else who is contemplating getting involved with psychics and astrologers. They are only in it for the money. They don’t care about you, no matter what their slick marketing says.

Norah KNOWS she’s duping people. She says it’s “obvious” that astrological and psychic readings should not be taken as anything but mere entertainment…..

Telling you to “use your common sense” in the same breath as she’s telling you to believe the biggest load of BULLSHIT is just so cynical, it makes me ill.