We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Dark matter is composed of some thing other than the electrons and protons that make up our 5 percent world. Whatever it is, we can be thankful for it -- it seems to be the only thing holding galaxies together (there is not enough ordinary matter present in observable galaxies to prevent them from disintegrating).
Dark energy is a mysterious force borne by some thing other than the photons that carry energy in our 5 percent world.
Under the mantle of a new kind of official religious Science!, Big Dark Black Matter Bangism Holes are all placeholders - untestable theories that don't even purport to invoke material physics - that dogmatically stand in for something as yet grasped by mainstream science.
The science doesn't exist. It doesn't exist yet whole swaths of smart people fall in line parroting these myths as if they were scientific simply because of their origin and because they sound important, official, or plausible.
How profoundly unsettling it must be to realize perhaps you understand the smallest sliver of a story that was more vast and complicated than you could have ever imagined.
Göbekli Tepe is one of hundreds of enormous megalithic sites worldwide, the purposes of which appear strangely consistent site to site and as yet unknown. And no, they weren't tombs.
And so it is with physicists confronting dark matter and energy.
It is a plasma universe; an electric universe and what's holding it together are the rivers and whorls of vast currents flowing in space. But, like relativity when confronted with standard quantum mechanics or standard quantum mechanics when confronted by the newest model of the quantum, we erect theories about reality that frequently fall. Falling apart is what science is consistently best at, which is a testament to science.
Dark matter doesn't exist and there is no evidence it ever has or will.
Great article! My favorite analogy is that we're like the family dog who jumps into the car anticipating a trip to the park or the lake or wherever. The dog knows nothing of how the car engine works. He only knows that he's in a big thing that will take him along with his family and he's happy to go along. The dog has no idea of all the knowledge that he's missing. Compared to God we are simple minded, like the dog. But humans like to think they have a brain as big as God's. Maybe we aren't meant to know everything.
Cool article! WE found that Turkey had more and better archaeological sites than anywhere else in Europe we visited.
I had wanted to go to see that city they are excavating, but that particular site is right near the Syrian border, so it is almost impossible. Virtually all the trips normal tourists can take now are the standard ring on a bus with a rugged tour guide, and a muscular young guy (both former Turkish army) like the one we went on several years ago, with a bus driver, where one sees amazing sites in the more western area, on great roads, far from Syria, and the Kurdish areas. I don't even know if one is allowed to go to the east any more without some kind of permission.
One accomplishment of the Turks: after being pillaged by Schliemann and the Europeans in the 19th century, they took charge of their own archaeology, run the digs themselves, and are now doing an excellent, academically sound job of excavating and cataloguing their sites now.
It's interesting that in one's efforts to recreate ancient history and to understand the scientific principles that undergird the universe one comes smack dab against equally opaque mystery, the unexpected, and all one's preconceptions get turned to dust repeatedly. Almost as if there were Someone bigger and wiser than ourselves, for now unknowable, in charge of it all. Whether you go back, or magnify, or squint at a distance, one is dazzled but can't figure it out with our present limited categories. I don't know how any scientist or any other scholar can stay an atheist for long, actually.
St Paul wrote about it in I Corinthians:
"9For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. 10But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away. 11When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. 12For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known"
No matter how smart we think we are (some of us, not me) or how much knowledge we obtain, nobody really knows what is going on. It doesn't matter a whole lot. If we found the answers, would it provide physical immortality? I think not. Ergo: you get three score and ten, or four score if you are strong. Make the most of it.