Planetary collision, destruction of earth
Armageddon? Again?

Goodish Times is not a newspaper where journalists work at promoting political parties or inventing news rather than reporting it; it’s a magazine written by normal people, with proper jobs. We write about stuff that interests us, so it’s quite logical that we turned out attention to that pressing topic, The End of the World. And, let’s be honest, it’s a topic that should be of interest to all of us.

People have been talking about the end of the world since it started, or at least since the Bible took up the cause. The wrath of God, alien invasions, ice ages, black holes, volcanic mayhem, global warming, solar flares, asteriods, politicians and planetary bumper cars, to name but a few,  have been put forward as possible or probable causes.

Now it’s fair to say that they can’t all be right. No intelligent life form is likely to waste time wiping us out when they can see there’s a perfectly good planet or asteriod heading our way, for example. It just wouldn’t make sense. So they can’t all be right. We’ve settled that.

Every living and physical thing has a beginning and an end, even the universe itself, so we know beyond any doubt that Earth will at some point die or be destroyed. So, by definition, not all of these end of the world stories can be wrong. It’s a mathematical certainty that one of them will be right; we’re all going to die!

When and how?

Once we accept that the planet is going to be destroyed and we’re all going to die, the only things that matter are when, and how.

As they’re not likely to happen in our lifetimes, we have decided to ignore events such as the death of our sun and the universe shrinking and disappearing up its own backside. Instead, we’ll look at things that might happen in the next hundred or so years, because the simple truth is that nobody genuinely cares what happens to the planet in a thousand years’ time.

The timing of any extinction event is quite important, especially if you’re thinking about booking your holidays. The problem is, we can’t really talk about the ‘when’ until we know the ‘how’. So we’ll start there.

Ancient prophecies

Ancient tribes like the Incas and Aztecs, who are said to have possessed knowledge way ahead of their time, possibly handed down by aliens, predicted the end of the world would come about after the planets lined up in a particular fashion. The question of interplanetary gravitational forces is an interesting question, but the idea of it causing Earth to pop like a balloon or drift off for a daytrip to the sun has been dismissed as poppycock by most modern scientists. As smart as these old tribes may have been, they neglected to forsee their own extinction, so they plainly weren’t as clever as some people would have you believe.

revelations predicting the end of the world
Revelations predicting the end of the world

The wrath of God is another possibility, at least if you believe in God. Giving it a little thought, it’s quite obvious that if he / she / it exists, God must be pretty hacked off with humans. For a start, we’ve we’ve worshipped all manner of things in his / her / its name, from rocks through to trees, cats, dogs and other assorted animals . Even now, in these enlightened times, we can’t make up our mind what his / her / its name or gender is.

Reproducing at a rate and in locations that would put a brain-dead rabbit to shame, we’re slowly but surely eating or burning our own home. If we were witches living in a candy cottage, we’d already be tucking in to the foundations. So yes, he / she / it may well be pissed off with us and thinking of erasing the human experiment and going back to the drawing board.

The big fly in this particular ointment is the absence of God’s presence. The universe is a big place and it’s quite possible that, having gone walkabouts to look at other beings, God has quite simply forgotten where he left us. Given the lack of verifiable evidence of God’s presence in human history, this is a very real possibility. So, forgotten or lost in space, we’re unlikely to get our bums spanked by God any time soon.

Alien attacks

Hollywood loves the idea of an invading alien force, but while such an alien invasion to be a perfectly rational possibility, the idea that they would choose to annihilate us just so they can drink all our water seems a little far fetched. They’d lose a perfectly good source of slave labour, for example and, with rising sea levels on everybody’s minds these days, we’d probably pay them to take some of it away anyhow.

The favourite alien invasion theory is that they will come here intent on populating the planet, having been made homeless by the death of their own planet. Of course, if we assume that this intelligent species foresaw the end of their home planet and decided to strike out in search of another, they wouldn’t all have headed off in the same direction in the hunt for a new home, would they?

Obviously not. They’d have spilt up, heading off in all possible directions to maximise their chances of success. The significance of this? The chances are that any invasion force is unlikely to number more than a few thousand. Rather than fighting them, all we need to do is give them a country for them to call their own, somewhere like Somalia, North Korea or maybe Canada, and let them get on with it.

alien invasion
We could be visited by neighbours

Asteriods and mythical planets

So that leaves us with deadly asteroids and, a more recent theory, rogue planets. We’ll admit here and now that the idea of a large asteriod hitting our planet and wiping life out, or even destroying the planet does indeed seem to be an inevitability rather than a possibility. Never mind reading up on the number of impacts the Earth has already had, just look up at the moon tonight. That thing’s been nailed by more visitors than a Bangkok whore. It’s such a probability that there’s no sense in even debating it.

The more recent theories concerning rogue planets knocking us into oblivion would be extremely worrying if only they weren’t the inventions of barking mad attention seekers and people with nothing better to do than prolong the life of absurd stories on the internet. Newsflash: Nibiru doesn’t exist, so its impact will spread no further than giving the unintelligent something to talk about on Facebook.

Which brings us down to D.I.Y.

We’re constantly being told that we’re on our way to creating global warming, ice ages, floods, droughts and things like that because we burn too much oil and spend way too much on Mcdonalds, Coca Cola and disposable nappies.

Now, although this may make us a little unpopular in some circles, the Goodish Times feels it’s only right that we let you all in on a massive secret. Although the earth is apparently getting warmer than it was a little while ago, the ‘end of the world by global warning’ story is NOT a scare story – it’s actually aimed at keeping you happy!

global warming
We could all cook to death

Think about it if scientists told you that the world was changing of its own accord, that there was absolutely nothing we can do about impending ice ages or rising temperatures and that the planet’s anti-viral system was winding up to elminate human life, how would you respond?

You’d probably get a little depressed, for starters, go to work less often on the grounds that the end is nigh and stop paying bills and taxes. Nobody wants that. So some genuis cooked up global warming.

We’re told that the bad news is that we’re to blame for killing the planet. The good news is that the damage is reversible, provided we pay additional taxes on the products we consume and stop buying stuff made by companies that refuse to toe the party line. End result, people are happier because they know their trusty scientists can save the world, tax incomes increase and we all live happily ever after. It’s the perfect fairy tale!

That’s not to say the scientists who live and breathe the global warming story should be deprived of their funding or be forced to examine other possibilities. No, our view is that there are way too many graduates leaving university without jobs, and if budding scientists can instead find a job in the entertainment sector, then they well and truly deserve it.

Getting back to armageddon, this planet has its own life and its own anti-viral defences. Ice ages have come and gone, both in the time before humans existed and even during our lifetimes. Oxygen and carbon dioxide levels in our atmosphere have varied hugely; go back far enough and our atmosphere was actually unbreathable to humans. Change is nothing new; it’s just politically useful.

If the planet needs to reboot and clean itself of parasites, it’ll do it, just as sure as your dog will lick its balls when it feels the need. And there’s nothing you can do to stop it.

human survival depends on birth control
Humanity needs to use a lot more contraception

Sex and stupidity

If mankind proves to be cause of its own extinction, the real cause won’t be carbon emissions, it will be the combination of sex and stupidity. Aside from lunatic dictators, nobody has ever seriously looked at ways of keeping human population levels at sustainable levels. Bleating about increased consumption of food, water, oil and other natural resources is utterly pointless if you choose to ignore the fact that the increases are related to population levels. There are somewhere around 7 billion of us currently living on this planet, which is about 5 billion too many. We’re not going to discuss why this relates to sex and stupidity because we’re assuming you can work it out for yourself.i

So when is armageddon due?

Those of you working in the holidays and retirement sectors can relax; armageddon isn’t due any time soon.

We know the Aztecs, Incas and other ancient races were wrong, along with their internet conspiracy obsessed descendents, so we can safely discard their gravitational pull and invisible planet theories.

There are no alien hordes in sight and, even if they decide to pay a visit and conduct the inevitable scientific experiments on hayseed farmers in the American Mid-West, the odds that they’ll come here just to kill us all are pretty slim, to say the least.

Considering the horrific abuses committed in his name by insane believers, we can be sure that God isn’t watching and either doesn’t give a damn what we do or has moved to a better neighbourhood, so divine intervention would appear to be off the menu.

There are currently no killer asteroids heading our way, and even if one is en-route it’s so far out of sight that it’ll be decades before it arrives, which means it’s unlikely to be a problem for anybody reading this.

So the good news is that while the end may be near in relative terms, Armageddon doesn’t currently have a confirmed appointment and the only serious threats to our existence are Iran, North Korea, Donald Trump and a shortage of condoms.

Richard

After graduating from university, I joined the British Army, where I served as an engineer for 15 years. After deciding to rejoin the normal world, I was offered a training role with one of the UK's largest engineering firms. Thanks to my work, I have worked in over a dozen different countries to date.

For the past 5 years I have been an occasional writer for a number of technical and also travel publications, but jumped at the chance to offer observations on normal life when my friends launched Goodish Times.

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