Home > 2012 > Gregg Braden’s “Choice Point 2012”- a HIGHLY critical analysis

Gregg Braden’s “Choice Point 2012”- a HIGHLY critical analysis

From TheNibiruChallenge:

The claim that sometime in 2012 our planet is going to be creamed by the magical planet Nibiru is just one strand of the larger tapestry of quasi-New Age modern superstitions that I call 2012 apocalypticism, which are the general beliefs that some sort of terrific cataclysm or other civilization-altering event that will forever change humanity is preordained or prophesied to take place sometime in the year 2012.

Believers in the 2012 apocalypse have been duped by the dishonest or unqualified authors of expensive paperbacks into believing that Mayan calendars, magnetic fields, Sumerian gods, quantum consciousness, aliens, the ‘singularity,’ and a small number of other motifs that form the mainstay of the modern New Age all prophecy the demise of civilization in a few years. That none of these authors have anything even plausibly mistakable for evidence for their claims is irrelevant since the rhetoric is apparently so appealing to anyone who has bought into the general premises of the New Age.

In this sense, the 2012 apocalypse milieu is very similar to creationism- a small number of arguments repeated ad nauseum, authors who (shrewdly, necessarily) bypass peer review for the popular press, a general distrust of mainstream science, etc. And like creationism, 2012 apocalypticism has created a whole new, largely internet-based industry, with CDs, DVDs, books, pamphlets, and magazines dedicated to the “mysteries of 2012.” As always, the New Age proves highly incestuous- 2012 apocalyptic claims can be found on the same forums as quantum consciousness, in UFO cults/the abductee movement discussion boards, and general conspiracy rhetoric. And, of course, there are the Nibiru people.

One recent, highly comprehensive anthology on this subject, The Mystery of 2012, published by the hilariously appropriately-titled Sounds True Publishing, is a particularly credulous collection of essays by a diverse crowd of profoundly unskeptical promulgators of 2012 rhetoric. It is worth noting that Sounds True Publishing sells New Age books and CDs for as much as $100 a pop on its website, despite the clearly anti-materialism bent of several of its publications.

The keynote address of this collection is Gregg Braden’s essay Choice Point 2012, which provides a good, general survey of the core claims of 2012 apocalypticism. What follows is a point-by-point critical discussion of the inexcusably bad science, the flagrant falsehoods, and the New Age gobbledygook that this article flaunts. Hopefully, this discussion will entail an informed rebuttal of many of the most common arguments of the 2012 apocalypticists, since Braden deploys several of the favorite mainstay fallacies of the New Age arsenal in defending his vision of the 2012 apocalypse.

Braden helpfully includes a summary of the five points of the article (they are included in an online excerpt of this article), which is where I will begin, and then use material from the article to discuss where Braden has, erm, missed the boat on a number of important issues. These are his five main points:

  • The end of the Mayan Great Cycle marks a rare alignment of our planet, our solar system and the center of our galaxy – one that will not occur again for another 26,000 years.
  • On March 10, 2006, a cycle of solar storms ended and a new cycle began. It is predicted to peak in 2012, with an intensity of 30 to 50 percent greater than previous cycles.
  • Scientists agree that Earth’s magnetic fields are weakening quickly, and some suspect that we are in the early stage of a polar reversal.
  • Correlations between the magnetic fields of the Earth and human experience suggest that it is easier for us to accept change and adapt to new ideas in weaker fields of magnetism.
  • Recent validation of quantum principles proves that the way we perceive our world – our beliefs about our experience – strongly influences our physical reality.

These are all claims that are echoed across the spectrum of New Age rhetoric.

So then, right to it. Scarcely do we get a half-dozen words into Braden’s first point before the first, glaring, fatal error is exposed. Let us examine that error, since it is one of the most oft-repeated errors of the 2012 milieu:

The end of the Mayan Great Cycle…

Hold up. What Braden is referring to here is the Mesoamerican Long Count Calendar, which is an incredibly complex calendar system developed by the Mayans that keeps track of several different means of reckoning time that overlap periodically, and the particularly profound overlaps (such as December 21, 2012, when several of these reckoning means will enter a new cycle on the same day) demark the “Great Cycles.” To be clear- Braden and his co-apocalypticists are correct when they point out that December 21st, 2012, is a day of significance in the Mayan calendar. Unfortunately, he gets pretty much everything else on this issue wrong.

One critical error is the statement that the Mayan calendar “ends” (a word he uses in this context more than once in the essay) or terminates on December 21st, 2012, which is simply untrue. On that day, the Mayan calendar will just chug on along into another cycle; it is the equivalent of saying that the world will end shortly after Christmas this year because the Gregorian calendar “ends” on December 31st. This is obviously ridiculous; the calendar doesn’t “end,” it simply starts another cycle. In fact, the Great Cycle has come to a conclusion several times in recorded history and catastrophe has not materialized. The last time a Great Cycle restarted was September 18th, 1618, and surprisingly, the world did not conclude. Nor did it on June 15th, 1224, or on March 13th, 830. There is no evidence anywhere in the archaeological record of Mayans who associated the restarting of the Great Cycle with cataclysm.

But this is not even the most outlandishly erroneous statement that Braden makes about the Mayans. Anyone familiar with the rhetoric will recognize the obvious wink-and-nod to the Eric von Daaniken/Zecharia Sitchen types that goes on in this little gem of a paragraph on Mayan history from earlier in the essay:

Why did an advanced civilization suddenly appear over 1,500 years ago with the most sophisticated galactic clock known until modern times, build a massive civilization focused on expansive galactic cycles, and then disappear?

This is pure bunkum from tip to toe. Firstly, the Mayans did not “suddenly appear” as an “advanced civilization” 1,500 years ago- they developed gradually from coalitions of indigenous Mesoamericans, and we actually know quite a bit about this normal, gradual development. We have several artifacts dating from thousands of years prior to high urban Mayan civilization clearly indicating that the Mayans developed civilization in exactly the same way and general timescale as their Mesopotamian counterparts; the assertion that Mayan civilization appeared “suddenly” is simply rank falsehood.

They also did not just pop into existence (intelligent design, Sitchen-style?) with their calendar intact, the calendar system developed over a period of centuries. As far as we can tell, the Mayans probably did not invent this system wholesale- rather, it appears to have been agglomerated from several Mesoamerican cultures over many years of cultural diffusion. Again, Braden is simply hyperbolizing to give us the impression that there is some magic to Maya civilization that warrants a devotional attitude towards its calendar.

And as for “disappearing,” I imagine that what Mr. Braden is implying (that the Mayans suddenly vanished, a claim substantiated only by cranks and kooks for decades) would come as something of a shock to the continuous bloodlines of original Mayan stock that persevere to this day in Mesoamerica, with an unbroken cultural tradition far predating the Conquistador holocaust of the 15th-18th centuries. If Mr. Braden likes, he can actually contact these people at the link provided above; I imagine that they will be delighted to hear all about how they don’t exist and how their ancestors blinked out of existence century ago.

If Braden did not do even the minimal research necessary to establish these points, then he is incompetent and unqualified to speak on these issues. If he did do the research and reports the facts falsely anyway, then he is a fraud. There is no way to mince this point: Braden has overlooked some very basic facts about his own claims.

But, we have dwelled here long enough. As for the rest of his first argument, that bit about the “rare alignment of our planet, our solar system and the center of our galaxy,” I can only find this claim substantiated by the most meager of sources (Braden does not include a footnote). But even supposing it is true- so what? Braden provides no evidence that such a convergence will have any impact on our planet or on our civilization, and this claim not offer any insight into the future beyond the banal anomaly-hunting that appears endemic in 2012 mythmaking. See here for a great discussion of what harmonic convergences actually entail for humanity.

His second claim:

On March 10, 2006, a cycle of solar storms ended and a new cycle began. It is predicted to peak in 2012, with an intensity of 30 to 50 percent greater than previous cycles.

This claim is a trivial diddle to deal with because it is factually correct but wholly irrelevant. Sunspot activity peaks at fairly regular and indeed fairly brief intervals (the last such peak was around 2001). The worst that such peaks do is offer minor inconvenience for electronic telecommunication- nothing else. Furthermore, there is no evidence that this particular cycle will peak anywhere near the magic December 21st date, so as far as I am concerned Braden is just anomaly-hunting.

Furthermore, the claim that this upcoming sunspot cycle will be a particularly nasty one do not appear to be substantiated by NASA, which has predicted that the next cycle will probably be only slightly more intense than the previous one, by a degree of about 20 sunspots, which, for purposes of predicting disruption to telecommunication technology, is insignificant. This business about the sunspots reads to me as little more than a scare tactic designed to plant the unsubstantiated notion in the reader’s brain that there will be some kind of Y2K-style technological backfire in 2012. Needless to repeat, this assumption is wholly groundless.

The next two claims are very closely linked as a sort of modus ponens. They are also linked in that they are two of the most demonstrably false and outrageous claims in the entire essay:

Scientists agree that Earth’s magnetic fields are weakening quickly, and some suspect that we are in the early stage of a polar reversal.

Correlations between the magnetic fields of the Earth and human experience suggest that it is easier for us to accept change and adapt to new ideas in weaker fields of magnetism.

First, to be clear, this first claim is a bit exaggerated (“weakening quickly” translates to a loss of about 10% of field strength in the last 160 years), but more or less true, and no one who knows what’s up is terribly put off by it.

But first, what is this business about us being in the early stage of a “polar reversal,” you might wonder. A polar reversal sounds really scary- it’s when the magnetic field collapses and then the poles literally reverse as the geodynamo reboots- compasses would point towards the South Pole in the aftermath of such a reversal, for example. But what does this actually entail? This National Geographic article is extraordinarily even-handed on the issue, and listen to the veritable nightmare that is on the way for us:

Without our planet’s magnetic field, Earth would be subjected to more cosmic radiation. The increase could knock out power grids, scramble the communications systems on spacecraft, temporarily widen atmospheric ozone holes, and generate more aurora activity.

Oh, the horror! In short, a pole reversal might give you some brownouts, and could genuinely ruin your day if you live on the space shuttle, but otherwise, it is nothing to worry about. Gary Glatzmaier, an expert on this question working out of UC Santa Cruz puts it nicely: “The field has reversed many times in the past, and life didn’t stop.”

So, even though Braden offers no evidence that such a collapse-and-reverse are on schedule for precisely 2012, certainly not for December 21st of that year, we can actually toss him a bone and suppose that such a thing could be true without being particularly dissuaded from planning for the future.

Here is a lesson plan designed for grade schoolers that Braden can read up on to maybe help explain to him why his is wrong. I offer it because he obviously is not too big on looking into the research on his own.

As an aside, this is one of those interesting confluences of conspiracy/New Age rhetoric, as the “pole shift” or “polar reversal” meme is abundant in the Atlantis crowd, many of whom make hand-waving references to pole shifts to explain what might have destroyed the totally unsubstantiated anachronism that is “Atlantis.” Needless to say, I hold more or less as much skepticism for that field of claim-making as I do for the 2012 apocalypticists.

So of course, this claim by itself is harmless. But view it in context of the third claim. Braden claims that weaknesses in the terrestrial magnetic shield could somehow actually spur human creativity. This, of course, is a doozy of a claim, and this is one of those times that it really becomes apparent why people like Braden bypass peer review for the popular press. But just wait until you see his “evidence.”

Looking earlier in the article for how this rather extravagant claim is substantiated, things quickly devolve into woo-land madness. Read this gem of a factoid from a few pages back in the article that attempts to give us some reason to expect mountains to move for a pole shift:

We know, for example, that magnetic fields have a profound influence on our nervous systems, our immune systems, and our perceptions of space, time, dreams, and even reality itself.

And there you have it. No footnote, no reference, no citation, just bare assertion. How Braden “knows” this is a complete mystery- presumably this is more cross-cultural diffusion among the credulous, since these wild claims abound in New Age literature, particularly (obviously) in bunkum like magnet therapy.

Even if we offer him the best possible evidence in favor of the faith-based proposition that magnetism alters “reality itself,” we get at best a few enticing tidbits about endocrinology. Dreams? Nervous systems? Please. Show me the evidence. If you are interested in a fun home experiment on the ability of magnetism to completely change your life, go get an MRI (MRIs basically bathe you in an intense magnetic field). I’ve had one. I was not transformed into a creative dynamo, nor has any kind of remotely reliable analysis shown that MRIs make Twains and Tolkiens of us all, nor does it do the opposite (whatever that would be exactly).

Again, we can (and I will) give Braden the best available scientific evidence for magnetism having funky effects on the nervous system freely because such evidence does not substantiate any part of his claims. The effect sizes are tiny, the results are minor, the claim is bunk. To say that there is some “profound influence” of magnetic fields on “our nervous systems” or “reality itself” is, put nicely, ridiculous.

Braden himself tries to gasp his way into evidence for this proposition, but it is so bad that I fear that mentioning it will make me look like I’m ad hominizing this clueless woo woo. He concocts an obscene pseudo-hypothesis he calls the “magnetic glue model,” which is built on the wholly unfounded foundational premise that magnetism plays some vital role in consciousness and that the amount of magnetism going on in your particular neighborhood on the planet has a marked effect on how creative you are. He figures that places with higher magnetic activity are less conducive to creativity than places with lower magnetic activity. And how does he substantiate this claim? Brace yourself; what follows is not a joke:

Our “magnetic glue” model suggests that places with stronger magnetic fields (more glue) are more deeply entrenched in tradition, beliefs, and existing ideas. In places where the fields are weaker, just the opposite is true. In these places, people seem compelled to create change… In our Middle East example, we see the struggle that can result from the attempt to preserve ancient tradition in a place that compels change [the Middle East has a magnetic gauss rating of 0]… A simultaneous zero magnetic contour line exists parallel to America’s West Coast… Central Russia, 150 mag gauss, historically, change comes over time. Once change begins in these areas, it carries a momentum that makes itself known in a way that cannot be missed.

And you see why I had to disclaim that this is not a joke.

So, now Braden would have us believe that a religiously conservative tradition magically fell into the place despite being a homogenously creativity-driven population (since of course, everyone in the Middle East experiences a similar magnetic field density, which is obviously why all Middle Easterners are creative), and of course we have to believe that all of the geopolitical problems in the Middle East can be chalked up to an imaginary tension between magnetically-charged creative people and the religious tradition that apparently deviates from what should be the norm in the Middle East.

And of course we have to believe that the West Coast is full of creative people from top to bottom (looking at you on this one, Arizona). And those uncreative Russians, whose creativity-impoverished backwards culture has only yielded Dostoevsky, Shostakovich, Lenin, Tolstoy, Baryshnikov, Ayn Rand, Kasparov, so forth, and we know that change comes gradually to those slow-minded Russians because it took a whole year for an entire capitalist empire to be overthrown by the world’s first functioning communist government.

Here is a website designed for middle-schoolers explaining why the magnet-consciousness link is junk.

This “evidence” is ridiculous at best and insulting at worst. And it is how Braden attempts to substantiate one of the seminal claims of the work- that a pole shift-induced magnetic upheaval will have a dramatic effect on human consciousness. And we are supposed to believe it because everyone in the Middle East is creative and no one in Russia is creative.

Not only does he fail to offer any kind of remotely plausible mechanism for how this might be the case, the circumstantial evidence he offers in its favor isn’t even mistakable for accurate or convincing.

But he isn’t done yet. He gives himself a safety net against the obvious absurdity of the above claim with one that is borderline as absurd:

Even without such evidence, we know intuitively that we are affected by planetary magnetic forces. Any law enforcement officer or health-care practitioner will attest to the intense, and sometimes bizarre, behavior that is seen during a full moon…. Artists and musicians know this and often anticipate full-moon cycle as periods of great creativity.

And once again, that is it. No footnote, no reference, not so much as an anecdote or a quote from some luna-stricken hyper-creative “artist” or “musician,” no statistical evidence correlating emergency room visits or crime rates with the full moon.

It is probably good for Braden that he made not even a hand-waving effort to substantiate this claim with evidence, since if he did, he would probably found that the full moon does not correlate with antisocial behavior, violent behavior, geriatric mental function, prison violence, suicide or homicide, aggression, depression or anxiety, psychosis, or emergency room visits. In short, he is wrong and he is relying on less than anecdotal evidence to argue this point, By talking about “health-care practitioners” and “law enforcement officers” without offering either studies or even anecdotes, he is actually relying on an anecdote about an anecdote: firstly, we have to believe that the full moon positively correlates with violence and madness, and secondly, that every doctor and cop in the nation knows it. And he is wrong on both points.

And as for the bit about artists and musicians, I could find no evidence either way on that, but (and call me premature), I doubt that any appropriately-controlled study would yield much by way of results on that front.

Of course, if this claim falls, then every argument that follows from the worry about a pole shift also falls, since if we have no cause to worry about or expect some kind of global consciousness-changing from changes in the Earth’s magnetism (which we don’t), then we have no cause to think that even if a pole shift does occur in 2012 (there is no reason to believe that it will) that it will have any of the effects that Braden wants it to have. He has plunged headlong to an absurd conclusion based on no evidence (remember that he has no citation at this point in the article). Even when I give him the best available evidence, nothing he wants to capture with his argument synchs up with reality.

His final claim is a diddle to deal with:

  • Recent validation of quantum principles proves that the way we perceive our world – our beliefs about our experience – strongly influences our physical reality.

This is just a lame, hand-waving reference at the most grossly misinformed pseudoscientists playing the game today, which are the quantum consciousness quackos. The Deepak Chopras and Rustem Roys of the world rely on the simple fact that the average person does not understand quantum physics in order to swindle them out of their money at the bookstore.

Read my lips: quantum effects do not manifest themselves in any system larger than an atom. None of the so-called “intention experiments,” or experiments set up to show that human consciousness can somehow magically alter the outcome of certain physical interactions, has yet shown any good results. Most of those studies are poorly-controlled, and some of them (like the “water memory” gobbledygook) are so poorly designed that no amount of controlling will rescue us from the fact that the quantum quacks either have no idea how to do good science, or they refuse to ever actually do good science for fear of hurting book sales.

It would be interesting to see what Braden has confused for “validation” of these misinterpretations of available experimental data, but, sadly, surprisingly… no footnote, no reference, no link, no nothing.

His claims about the Maya are simply false. His claims about the pole shift are unsubstantiated scare tactics. His claims about magnetism are false, absurd, ridiculous, simplistic, and insulting. His claims about quantum effects are simply exposés of his own gullibility, and are useful only as another good example of the kind of cross-cultural diffusion that sends bad ideas flying around like ping-pong balls in the 2012 community.

And there you have it.

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  1. JK
    April 18, 2009 at 2:55 am

    What is YOUR motivation to expose these theories. Are you one of the fortunate ones that doesn’t have a day job? Just curious!

  2. Emmanuelle
    May 2, 2009 at 5:10 pm

    I read your long article and honestly there might be some truth in it but I also think that you are denying the simple fact that we are living in a very modern world and that the effect of the sun on high technology could be a disaster.Even the people that invest tons of dollars, actually spend thousands of billions of dollars to investigate…There is a reason! The NASA just released a report on extreme weather condition in space and warned all governments that this could create total chaos. Satelites, planes, etc are in danger when it happens. In 2011 (forget 2012) there will be a maximum solar in november. Unfortunately, this will be a stronger cycle according to scientists for Jupiter and Saturn will be facing the sun so it will be a maximum of the solar maximum. For when planets are facing the sun there is an major increase in solar spots. In 1777 Jupiter and Saturn were on each side of the sun and there was a mini ice age. Another aspect is that starting in 2011, the earth will align with all the planets in our system and we all know that when planets are aligned it causes problems. In 1953 in London they were major floods because of the earth, the moon and the sun aligned…so imagined when 8 planets of the solar system are aligned…
    Venus in 30 years had its auroral luminosity increase of 2500 per cent, Jupiter has its plasma increase of 200 per cent etc this is happening with ALL the planets in the solar system. Scientists agree that a major event is about to take place and whether you believe it or not it is true. We live in a solar system and we are magnetic beings that feel the magnetism of the earth, the sun and the moon etc
    As for Nibiru, you may think what you want this is not an issue but there is more than meets the eye and even if you do think it’s outrageous, we are about to face major changes. Braden is not like others, he makes sense regardless what you write. There is a Divine Matrix…2011 is not the end of our world but the end of the world as we know now…We don’t have to wait long to find out. So you could always write another article on these topics after 2012…best regards.

  3. yowcrooks
    May 14, 2009 at 11:00 am

    Our motivation is knowing the fact we’ll be around to witness these current batch of fear mongers fall flat on their faces when all their crackpot theories fail to come to fruition. And yes we have day jobs, we work hard for a living, something these doomsayers wouldn’t know much about.

  4. yowcrooks
    May 14, 2009 at 12:09 pm

    I’m sorry, but there is absolutely no connection with “planets facing the Sun” and an increase in sunspots. Sunspots are caused by the uneven rotation of the Sun, the equator rotating faster than the polar regions. That stretches out magnetic field lines, crowding them together and making their magnetic field stronger. Strong magnetic field (under the surface) pushes away the solar gas, which therefore gets less dense, so that regions of strong field tend to float up to the top, the way oil floats to the surface of water. Where it breaks the surface, sunspots occur. I suggest you read the following articles: http://adsabs.harvard.edu/full/1913PA…..21..404K
    As for your 1777 mini Ice Age (where no specific date has been pinned on its occurance) once again there is no evidence this was caused by strong solar activity or Sunspots and certainly nothing indicating the fact that Jupiter and Saturn were on each side of the Sun that caused it. In fact during the period 1645–1715, in the middle of the Little Ice Age, there was a period of low solar activity known as the Maunder Minimum. It is generally agreed that there were three minima, beginning about 1650, about 1770, and 1850, each separated by slight warming intervals. Your statement of “in 2011, the earth will align with all the planets in our system and we all know that when planets are aligned it causes problems” is complete hogwash. There is NO Earthly planetary alignment starting in 2011. The next alignment will occur Sept 8, 2040 at approximately 7:30 pm. The planets involved will include Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, and the crescent Moon. There are also a number of things to keep in mind, however. First, there is a difference between having the planets aligned with respect to the Sun or as viewed from Earth. If the planets are lined up from the Sun, they also appear lined up from the Earth. If they are lined up from the Earth they need not be lined up from the Sun. Second, there is the question of just how well aligned they are. Perfect alignment is hard. Also, planetary alignments have no effect on the Earth, so no we don’t “all know that when planets are aligned it causes problems” for the simple fact that it doesn’t cause a problem. Your blaming the 1953 London floods on “because of the earth, the moon and the sun aligned” is once again complete hogwash. The floods that hit London in 1953 were caused by a combination of factors, high tides and a storm surge caused by hurricane force winds. Surges are caused mainly by the action of wind on the surface of the sea, with barometric pressure a secondary factor. When pressure decreases by one millibar, sea level rises by one centimetre. Thus, a deep depression with a central pressure of about 960 mb causes sea level to rise half a metre above the level it would have been had pressure been about average (1013 mb). When air pressure is high, sea level falls correspondingly. Without the hurricane force winds blowing in a storm surge then the 1953 London floods wouldn’t have happened. Also when you say “because of the earth, the moon and the sun aligned” I get the feeling you don’t properly know what happens when this occurs. It’s called a Lunar Eclipse my friend. This occurs when the Moon passes behind the Earth in such a way that it moves through the Earth’s shadow (in other words, when the Earth is between the Sun and the Moon – exactly opposite from the Solar Eclipse). Solar Eclipses therefore happen at the New Moon, and Lunar Eclipses happen at the Full Moon. For an Eclipse to happen at all, the Sun, Earth, and Moon must be aligned, not only in Celestial Longitude, but also in Celestial Latitude (and therefore, in Declination). However, while this alignment in Celestial Longitude happens every 29.53 days, the alignment in Celestial Latitude can only happen near one of the Nodes, or the Nodal Axis. So, an Eclipse requires that there be either a New Moon (Solar Eclipse), or a Full Moon (Lunar Eclipse), near one of the Nodes. The limits upon Eclipses are called Major and Minor Ecliptic Limits. Lunar and Solar Eclipse do not cause disastrous effects for Earth and did not contribute to the 1953 London floods.
    I really cannot be bothered to go into anything else you have written because it simply doesn’t make sense. You’re obviously a Braden fan who swallows anything he says as pure fact when in reality its pure fiction. But as you say, we can think what we want, the same goes to you.

  5. Marie
    May 14, 2009 at 1:56 pm

    I am glad you feel better now that you are sure nothing will happen:) You are free to think what you want and so am I. I am not a great fan of Gregg BRADEN but I feel there is some Truth in what he says. That’s my opinion. I do not try to be aggressive and treat people as if they were out for lunch and it is too bad that you come across that strong. At the end of the day nobody knows not even you…Time will tell and what will happen will happen…no need to freak out whether it does happen or not, this is bigger than you or me…

  6. yowcrooks
    May 14, 2009 at 2:22 pm

    Nothing will happen, the Sun isn’t going to torch the Earth, Nibiru wont be paying us a visit and nothing else these doomsayers predict will happen either. You need to learn what doomsday hype is. We were not being aggressive either, sorry if you read our posts with the wrong tone, we’re simply explaining things in the simplest possible way. When it comes to people like Braden, we do know what will happen because his claims can be easily dismissed using reputable sources and scientific facts. You’re correct, time will tell, and when 2012 comes and goes and we roll into 2013, 2014, 2015 etc etc, time will have told us that the 2012 doomsday nonsense was just another crackpot conspiracy theory dreamt up by a long line of crackpots out to make a buck by preying on the weak minded and gullible. There you have it in a nutshell.

  7. Marie
    May 14, 2009 at 3:11 pm

    You wrote: to make a buck by preying on the weak minded and gullible. So you know I am not weak not gullible but I don’t need you to believe me, I know I am not. Now do you think the scientists and the NASA are that gullible and weak? I don’t think so. NOw that you are not encline to believe any of this, it is ok but that you assert that everyone else that believe different are not thinking right, this is outrageous! Read this article and maybe you will broaden your outlook on things…You may not like the idea that we are very exposed and we can only blame ourselves, but that’s what happens when MEN think they know it all and control everything…

    Powerful Solar Storm Could Shut Down U.S. for Months
    Friday, January 09, 2009 | FoxNews.com
    By Robert Roy Britt

    Solar storms can cause colorful auroras, often seen in higher latitudes on Earth.
    Solar storms can cause colorful auroras, often seen in higher latitudes on Earth.
    A new study from the National Academy of Sciences outlines grim possibilities on Earth for a worst-case scenario solar storm.

    Damage to power grids and other communications systems could be catastrophic, the scientists conclude, with effects leading to a potential loss of governmental control of the situation.

    The prediction is based in part on a major solar storm in 1859 that caused telegraph wires to short out in the United States and Europe, igniting widespread fires.

    It was perhaps the worst in the past 200 years, according to the new study, and with the advent of modern power grids and satellites, much more is at risk.

    “A contemporary repetition of the [1859] event would cause significantly more extensive (and possibly catastrophic) social and economic disruptions,” the researchers conclude.

    • Click here to visit FOXNews.com’s Space Center.

    ‘Command and control might be lost’

    When the sun is in the active phase of its 11-year cycle, it can unleash powerful magnetic storms that disable satellites, threaten astronaut safety, and even disrupt communication systems on Earth.

    The worst storms can knock out power grids by inducing currents that melt transformers.

    Modern power grids are so interconnected that a big space storm — the type expected to occur about once a century — could cause a cascade of failures that would sweep across the United States, cutting power to 130 million people or more in this country alone, the new report concludes.

    Such widespread power outages, though expected to be a rare possibility, would affect other vital systems.

    Related StoriesMystery Roar Detected From Faraway Space
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    Video’Space Katrina’
    “Impacts would be felt on interdependent infrastructures with, for example, potable water distribution affected within several hours; perishable foods and medications lost in 12-24 hours; immediate or eventual loss of heating/air conditioning, sewage disposal, phone service, transportation, fuel resupply and so on,” the report states.

    Outages could take months to fix, the researchers say. Banks might close, and trade with other countries might halt.

    “Emergency services would be strained, and command and control might be lost,” write the researchers, led by Daniel Baker, director of the Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics at the University of Colorado in Boulder.

    “Whether it is terrestrial catastrophes or extreme space weather incidents, the results can be devastating to modern societies that depend in a myriad of ways on advanced technological systems,” Baker said in a statement released with the report.

    Stormy past

    Solar storms have had significant effects in modern time:

    — In 1989, the sun unleashed a tempest that knocked out power to all of Quebec, Canada.

    — A remarkable 2003 rampage included 10 major solar flares over a two-week period, knocking out two Earth-orbiting satellites and crippling an instrument aboard a Mars orbiter.

    “Obviously, the sun is Earth’s life blood,” said Richard Fisher, director of the Heliophysics division at NASA. “To mitigate possible public safety issues, it is vital that we better understand extreme space weather events caused by the sun’s activity.”

    “Space weather can produce solar storm electromagnetic fields that induce extreme currents in wires, disrupting power lines, causing wide-spread blackouts and affecting communication cables that support the Internet,” the report states. “Severe space weather also produces solar energetic particles and the dislocation of the Earth’s radiation belts, which can damage satellites used for commercial communications, global positioning and weather forecasting.”

    Rush to prepare

    The race is on for better forecasting abilities, as the next peak in solar activity is expected to come around 2012.

    While the sun is in a lull now, activity can flare up at any moment, and severe space weather — how severe, nobody knows — will ramp up a year or two before the peak.

    Some scientists expect the next peak to bring more severe events than other recent peaks.

    “A catastrophic failure of commercial and government infrastructure in space and on the ground can be mitigated through raising public awareness, improving vulnerable infrastructure and developing advanced forecasting capabilities,” the report states. “Without preventive actions or plans, the trend of increased dependency on modern space-weather sensitive assets could make society more vulnerable in the future.”

    The report was commissioned and funded by NASA. Experts from around the world in industry, government and academia participated. It was released this week.

  8. yowcrooks
    May 14, 2009 at 3:52 pm

    We were not implying you yourself were weak minded or gullible, but the majority of these doomsday believers are. You only have to visit certain websites and read the comments from such people who gobble up all the nonsense put infront them.
    You said: “Now do you think the scientists and the NASA are that gullible and weak? I don’t think so. NOw that you are not encline to believe any of this, it is ok but that you assert that everyone else that believe different are not thinking right, this is outrageous!”. Sorry, but NASA don’t peddle out doomsday hype on subjects such as 2012 and Nibiru, you seem to be missing the point of what this entire blog is aimed at, so that question was totally irrelevant. Also when it comes to people believing in myths such as Nibiru or the Mayan calendar ending in 2012, Pole Shifts and all the rest of the 2012 doomsday hype then yes, these people are not thinking right at all. They choose to ignore the facts and believe the tripe people such as Braden spew fourth. Also you can bombard us with as many links as you like, we are not debating the severity that solar storms can pose, we are debating the false garbage that gets dragged along with it such as a solar storm scorching the Earth clean and barbecuing every living thing on it. Claims such as this is what you call outrageous. Besides, what have solar storms got to do with the Mayan calendar and the date of December 21st 2012, Planet X or Nibiru? The answer is absolutely nothing. It just so happens that the next solar maximum has been predicted in 2010/2011 and also predicted to occur as late as 2012. That doesn’t mean there is a link to the Mayan calendar or a specific date of December 21st or anything else for that matter. This blog is about dismissing doomsday claims, Nibiru being the main one that we cover. Solar storms are not doomsday events, whether you think they are or not, they are just a small part of what gets dragged along with the rest of the 2012 nonsene and If you think we’re trying to somehow disprove “solar storms” entirely, then I’m afraid you’re on the wrong blog.

  9. Marie
    May 14, 2009 at 4:11 pm

    I hope DOOMSDAY won’t happen (but it has happened throughout history of humankind…I hope you won’t deny that:) therefore, you can’t affirm you are absolutely sure it won’t happen…It may scare you though…and maye that is why you are reacting so strongly? DOn’t get me wrong this is not a battle of egos between you and I. I don’t want to be right absolutely for the sake of being right! I hope I will be wrong!!! Because I don’t look forward to chaos!

    Now if I sent you this long article of the NASA it is because strangely it coincides with the MAYAS’ calendar. Also it is because talking about the MAYAS they have said that 2011 or 2012 (according to different sources) will be the end of OUR world but not the end of THE world. And the MAYAS said it will occur with a problem caused by the sun in relation with the earth…. as the TOLKIEN calendar talks about the end of the Fourth sun and the coming to the Fifth sun….It could very well be that without electricity our societies experiment a total shift in our conciousness and how we have been dealing with this world so far…. I would like to believe that we will find a way to leave a better planet to our children and the children yet to be born….I will close the subject don’t worry, like I said I do not want to be right but when the scientists and the different traditions come together I think one should ask some questions but we all must be careful of course as nobody knows….
    I suggest you listen to this very interesting (in my opinion…:) conference of Mr Ian LUNGOLD about the MAYA calendar and the inscriptions in a sacred stone. Talk given encompasses a history of time as perceived through ancient knowledge based on cycles of the mayan calendar but if not you don’t have to put up with this “nonsense”…though it makes sense…

    Peace to you
    best

    http://www.dailymotion.com/playlist/xwpoi_yaelleB_mayan-calendar/video/x8d675_calendrier-maya-partie1_news

  10. yowcrooks
    May 14, 2009 at 4:34 pm

    Doomsday events have not happened throughout the history of humankind. If they have then why are we still here? A doomsday event is a specific occurrence which has an exceptionally destructive effect on the human race. The final outcomes of doomsday events may range from a major disruption of human civilization, to the extinction of human life, to the destruction of the planet Earth, to the annihilation of the entire universe. Has any of this happend during the human race’s existence? The answer is no. Yes we’ve had plagues and the like, but these are hardly doomsday events. Also just to add that because the next solar maximum might coincide with the “magical” year of 2012 does not mean that’s why the Maya chose the date of December 21st, 2012. The Mayan calendar also does not end on this date, it begins a new cycle and this was a time of celebration for the Maya. If you yourself do abit more research you will also find more Mayan calendars that have dates that go well beyond the year 3000. The one that gets the most attention is the Mesoamerican Long Count calendar. This calendar forms the basis for a New Age belief, first forecast by José Argüelles, that a cataclysm will take place on or about December 21st, 2012, a forecast that mainstream Mayanist scholars consider a misinterpretation. Sandra Noble, who is the executive director of the Foundation for the Advancement of Mesoamerican Studies, Inc. in Crystal River, Florida says: “For the ancient Maya, it was a huge celebration to make it to the end of a whole cycle”. “To render December 21st, 2012, as a doomsday or moment of cosmic shifting”, she says, is “a complete fabrication and a chance for a lot of people to cash in.” No reputable Mayanist scholars consider the date of December 21st, 2012 to be a time of cataclysm for mankind. It’s simply untrue, and nonsense.

    Regards.

  11. May 21, 2009 at 6:41 am

    Keep up the good work. Expose more of these “prophets of nonsense”. I am just baffled that so many people believe in this stuff, but I guess that is what happens when religion twist science for its own purposes. Spreading fear and ignorance dressed up in a coat of science is basically what they are doing.

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