Friday, May 04, 2007

new voting addiction

I did actually bother to vote in the local elections and elections for Scottish parliament today. I had not voted for a while. It did seem pointless, when "new labour" was just the same as Tory. I assume I didn't screw up my ballot papers. I did follow the written instructions, but given the large number of spoilt ballot papers I could be one of those who screwed up. Anyway the only reason I wanted to vote was to give Blair a bloody nose, before he left. Although Tony Blair has been on TV, saying the election results were not so bad for labour. That's so true Tony, just like your foreign policies in Iraq have been a success. I am now addicted to voting. What can I vote for next? The BBC have an interesting page for the LHC.
The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) will re-create the conditions present just after the big bang. Some scientists argue that during a ten year spell of operation there is a 1 in 50,000,000 chance like the LHC could cause a catastrophe of epic proportions. Either a Black Hole or a new type of matter known as `strangelets' could form destroying the planet. Or possibly the fabric of space could be ripped apart producing a truly cosmic cataclysm. Given these odds do you think the LHC should be switched on?
I voted no. I am willing to admit that I am being slightly disloyal. The web page from the BBC was created because of a science TV program about the LHC. This was a depressing program, because they marketed the LHC as a telescope. The first twenty minutes of the program was about astronomy. Why did they need to show pictures from the Hubble telescope in a program about particle physics? There were a lot of celebrity physicists saying folksy and basic stuff in semi-darkness. Although, I am in favour of popular science journalism, somehow this program was misleading. They stressed black hole production (bollocks), but didn't mention "the grid". Somebody should be punished for making that crappy program, so I used my vote. If you interested the vote was 53% to 47% for turning the LHC on. So as usual my vote didn't matter. I do see visions of Profs from High Energy Physics groups ordering their graduate students to vote "yes" before they were let out for the weekend.