At the recent Association of Southeast Asian Nations conference U.S. President Barak Obama conceded, to an extent, that the U.S. is a declining power, and agreed that the world’s economic growth will be driven by Asia throughout the rest of the 21st century.
However, he was very quick to add that the conduct of the world’s business in the future will be carried on under the auspices of the USA. Because what hasn’t changed, is the self evident fact that America is the greatest nation the world will ever know, and through the coming millennia will remain the beacon of hope, responsibility, peace and equality. (Black sites, torture and extra-judicial summary execution of American citizens on sovereign foreign territory notwithstanding.)
The same week while this was going on, many of us were enthralled by the news that scientists from Italy, Switzerland, France and Belgium were re-writing the fundamental laws of physics. They had in a controlled experiment dispatched a stream of neutrinos faster than the speed of light. Then, after re-designing the experiment to eliminate the possibility of experimentally induced errors, they did it again to re-confirm their results.
To many persons who have made even the most meager effort to acquaint themselves with the most layman’s level of understanding of physics, this was amazing, wonderful and confusing; we would have to throw open the doors to our comfortable understanding of the universe, of our concepts of “the way things are” and be open to new ideas and information.
To persons who wish to live with the evolution of knowledge based on observable recordable and re-producible data, this was the best of days. Maybe the most memorable day for years; for more than a century, the speed of light was understood to be a physically inviolable quantity, and yet, this was amazing!
On the same day that this news was announced, the US congress was engaged in passing a law confirming that pizza was a vegetable.
God Bless America!
Dave Menzies, Terrace, BC