Wednesday, September 30, 2009

On Bullshit in Physics

"As conscious being, we exist only in response to other things, and we cannot know ourselves at all without knowing them" Harry G. Frankfurt: On Bullshit

Table of Contents

Table of Contents. 3

The Atom Bomb.. 7

List of Bullshit in Physics. 9

The Myth of Big Bang and Expanding Universe 11

The Black Hole Saga.. 16

Return to Colliding Atoms. 26

Composite Atom Bullshit 32

The Math of Bullshit 35

"Bullshit is unavoidable whenever circumstances require someone to talk without knowing what he is talking about" [page 66] and since the physics subject matter includes everything, the much smaller and much larger than ourselves reality as well, there always will be unknown. Nobody will ever really know what he is talking about regarding the galaxies or the nuclear structures; therefore the Physics always will have some bullshit. The question only how much bullshit is in the physics and which teachings of the Physics or Natural Philosophy are questionable, not real reflections of reality, just bullshit. We will talk about three different things: possible correct reflection, most likely wrong, erratic reflection of reality and bullshit (defined by Frankfurt).

The groundbreaking work of Harry G. Frankfurt made me realize that my own earlier characterization of today's physics as a pile of non-sense or lies is mistaken. It is just bullshit: short of lie, not necessarily deliberate misrepresentation. This realization calmed my anger and now with cold head I can make a case for a long overdue tabula rasa. Let's return to Natural Philosophy as Isaac Newton defined it - or go all the way back to Lucretius to describe the Nature of Things, because what we are taken in by – that is just plain Bullshit!

The more sensational it is the more likely that it is just bullshit, and the worst kind of it, the most likely wrong reflection of reality. The erratic nature of science is being covered by the drummed-up sensation. I will try to contribute to the theoretical understanding of bullshit by describing the development of such commonly spread bullshit like Big Bang origin and expansion of Universe - yes, both bullshit - and I will try to point out the role of secrecy in the development and wide sreading of bullshit.

In a humble attempt to further our knowledge I will describe a possible correct reflection of reality as well. The long neglected Atomic Theory as I see it.

The Atom Bomb

It is quite understandable that in the course of development of first nuclear weapons the dominating role of the developer nation had to be preserved by keeping the scientific knowledge secret. When some non-participant physicist got on right track, they had to be deceived. So the Hydrogen bomb, Hydrogen fusion was offered. Unfortunately one picked it up so successfully that within weeks the – bullshit – nucleo-synthesis was introduced fueling the stars and generating all the nuclei.

There is a problem still: one can not tell the truth about the fact that two Hydrogen nuclei - protons - never fuse without being pressured to reveal the truth about the thermonuclear weapons. The bullshit is being spread as science: solar - stellar energetic process, nucleo-synthesis. The real winner in my eyes is the Big Bang nucleo-synthesis: at this point one just had to make an inventory and whatever is wrong with the fusion based nucleo-synthesis is simply fixed by adding at the creation! Let's call it primordial - just for a bigger pile of bullshit!

The quest for the Higgs bozons started with a joke. Now the most expensive machine ever built, the LHC in CERN will try to collide protons as a triumph of bullshit…

List of Bullshit in Physics

Before I'm carried away I shall give a list of bullshit analyzed here:

1 Big bang creation of Universe

2 Expanding Universe

3 Black holes

4 Stellar nucleo-synthesis based on proton-proton fusion

5 Composite atom - nuclei of the atoms of chemical elements composed of protons and neutrons (or now by quarks and gluons)

6 Dark matter, dark energy – (Why are you torturing me?!)

7 Quarks and gluons as stand alone bullshit

8 Strings, brains and the likes

9 Iron core of Earth

And just to represent a contrast to the false bullshit, here is one bonus, most likely true: Global warming...

I selected these key points from Harry G. Frankfurt On Bullshit: "bullshit is a greater enemy of the truth then lies are" - [page 61] "It is just this lack of concern with truth – this indifference to how things really are - that I regard as of the essence of bullshit" [pages 33-34]

We will be guided by these definitions when analyzing one or other sensational scientific finding – and will define the things which are not concerned with as how they really are.

The Myth of Big Bang and Expanding Universe

I read somewhere a statement sounding like:

“One thing we know for sure that the Universe was smaller and hotter in the past” - and it still upsets me. The truth is that Edwin Hubble was an honest scientist. He discovered that there are other galaxies besides our Milky Way by comparing the sizes of holes burned in the photographic plates by light from Cepheid variables. He compared this technique with another research tool, the than new spectroscopy - and found a correlation between the sizes of holes - at the time he used it as a measure of distance - and the shifting of spectral lines - which was used to measure relative to us velocities of the stars. He reported his finding that the red shift of spectral lines increased with the decrease of sizes of the holes burned in the photographic plates as he dealt with these two techniques: the apparent recession velocity of the galaxies increases proportionally to their distances from us.

From this honest report two major bullshit were secreted almost instantly: the Universe expands with the galaxies flying apart with proportional to their distances to us velocities, and - hence - some time ago they all had to be together, therefore a Big Bang happened in the beginning, what 'created the Universe'.

The alternative - simple - explanation that the photons lose their energy proportionally to the distance they travel - favored by Edwin Hubble himself(!) - was - still is - being fought with furry. Thanks to Frankfurt's work now I understand why. Even mentioning the alternative reveals the fact that who talks about this phenomenon does not know what the photons are and therefore he is in an unavoidable situation, has to bullshit! As long as we learn what the photons are and if they really lose their energy while progressing through the empty space or not - the necessity of bullshit stays!

These two major bullshit in the Physics are demonstrate also the first cited statement of Frankfurt: "bullshit is a greater enemy of the truth then lies are". There is evidence that the research which would resolve this question whether the photon looses its energy during progression through empty space – or it is permanent, omnipresent, unchangeable as resulting from the Big Bang, Expanding Universe theories (bullshit) is being blocked by the bullshiters. Considerable funds are spent on the multiple Big Bangs and mushrooming universes but nothing on the so-called tired light, not much even on pure photon investigation. We even know that the photons change – but we disregard that when we are in astrophysics!

The smearing of these bullshit on Hubble is such a disgrace that I cannot pass by without trying to clear his name and honor him as the greatest astronomer of all times!

Somehow it is common: the bullshiters need an honest scientist to point to as the initial secretor of their favored bullshit. And they go considerable distances from the truth in order to find one… It is demonstrated by using the name of Hubble, Einstein and in the next chapter, Schwarzchild.

The Black Hole Saga

Let's look at the Black Holes. It was blamed on Schwarzchild - until his original papers were published in English on the internet. In these he specifically stated that the collapse of large mass below a critical volume must be accomplished with an energy-mass loss, therefore such animals (called later black holes) should not exist.

I don't want to know who secreted this bullshit. It is a typical representation of "this lack of connection to a concern with truth". As we see, the concern at the real honest scientists still existed - Hubble, Einstein, Schwarzchild - but later some aspiring shameless epigones twisted their findings into bullshit.

We still have no idea what is this substantial quality of things what we call mass – expressing the inertial and gravitational properties of things – and is there a limit what maximum mass density can exist. Again, like at the photons, if we assume that any large – infinite – density is possible (like infinite unchanged life of photons for the big bang), then we get a strange animal, black hole. However, in reality this just points to the lack of understanding of mass and photons – and of philosophical term, determination of infinity.

We shall understand the infinity as the assigning any quality to an object disregard of their real presence, and by assigning the quantity of infinity we deny the very quality assigned, allowing so the comparison, description of groups, which has entirely different members, and still being somewhat truthful. And this technique is a very useful tool, no argument there!

Indeed there is a very significant knowledge of what mass what space occupies! And surprisingly it points to a constant: the nuclear mass density. If combine this density with the Einstein described space-time deformation by the presence of mass – using the quantity of gravitational potential -, then we arrive to an interesting graph, showing surprising predictions about the possible mass and radius connection, already verified by supernovae and resulting neutron star observations! And this graph peaks at around six solar masses, with a clear indication of gamma-ray burst energy outputs – between the top and bottom portions of the curve – and resulting neutron star mass and radius expectations.

In this equation the nuclear density is expressed through a background density and multiplication factor rmf and the truncated shape of nuclei is considered through the replacement of 4 on a smaller value in the volume calculation.

“Supermassive black holes reside in the center of each galaxy” - announces this bullshit the government body, dedicated to further our knowledge, NASA ... Well, the improved observation techniques provide the evidence: there is a very large number (remaining at our subject matter I shall say: a shit-load) of neutron stars buzz around the galactic center of the Milky Way! Also, an understanding of the works of gravitational interactions between closely packed neutron stars (and I'm not asking too much, hence the idol, Albert Einstein pointed out the effect of gravitational field on everything) predicts the formation of very large systems of neutron stars. It shows all the observed characteristics, and shows no need for the nonsense of black holes.

I've been barked at on an international conference when I asked about the distinctive characteristics, which would allow us to find out is there a super-massive black hole or there is a large system of neutron stars? The bullshiters decided ages ago that there must be a black hole, there is no place for such questions!

The spreading, repeating the bullshit must have some economic incentives behind, as driving force. Indeed there are! One has to pledge allegiance to the big bang to get funding from NASA or defend vehemently the "standard model" to get on tenure tract. This buzz world of standard model was introduced to cover-up the insufficient knowledge – necessity of bullshit – and to be able to spread rumors: 'He (She) has no respect for standard model, must be an idiot!' – about just about anyone who shows some interest in the truth. Please note: the so called standard model does not deal with mass, like it would not be the most fundamental property of particles or heavenly objects!

I already lamented about the stellar energetic process, Hydrogen (proton-proton) fusion based nucleo-synthesis bullshit. I really should not tell the truth about it. When we all grow-up and stop killing each other than we will be able to talk about it freely. For now let just say that an equilibrium state on a very large – cosmic – scale could be resulted from a decay-based energetic process. In the Atomic Theory there is a series of super-massive nuclei is considered from the known chemical elements up to all the way to the neutron stars with a maximum mass of about six solar masses (as shown on the graph above). Indeed the evidence of neutron stars, supernovae, gamma-ray bursts all follows from this probably true reflection. In the core of the Earth, in the Sun, the super-massive nuclei decay into the chemical elements we know as they float-up to near the surface. The so called CME (Coronal Mass Ejection) is a great evidence for the decay of 4096 amu super-heavy nuclei decay in an explosive manner. A more detailed investigation of the resulting isotopic composition of the solar wind produced using the meteor compositions as a comparison would be needed.

Do I know what I'm talking about or this is just an other bullshit?! You just have to believe me I'm really concerned with the truths!

Correction! I'm so concerned with the truths that I ask everyone not to believe me! Try to find a contradicting fact, please!

Return to Colliding Atoms

I hope this illustrates the difficulties arising from secrecy or in general the difficulties with physics dealing with much larger or much smaller things then us. Without revealing the details allowing anyone to create dangerous weapons I have to ask you to believe me. But I could be a bullshitter, or even a liar who wants to deceive you! And may be I just want to make you a bullshitter.

May be we just have to live with the bullshit instead of Natural Philosophy until we all grow-up. The spreading of nuclear weapons and the ever-increasing danger of self-destruction may prevent us to tell the truth. Ever.

There is another alternative. We can present one coherent representation, which results in a true reflection without touching the parts leading to the dangerous weapons. But how we know that it really connected to the reality? May be we have to go all the way back and redefine all of our words used to reflect the reality. We reflect the reality existing. The very existence is a reflection of void and things; the things have properties, distinct from nothing. Should we include in a property-less, pure existing first beginning? As Lucretius called these no-things, elementary units of existence? Or Atoms as Democritus called them? Which fly with infinite velocity, has infinitely small extent in space, they are always and everywhere, omnipresent – and omnipotent? Constructing everything of their collisions?

The smallest elements of everything are collision events between the first beginnings or atoms? The unit of mass is a collision event always present in a given thing? The time fundamental property could be the fact that the collision events change, they are being replaced by new collisions? The measure of time is the comparison of phases when a selected relative collision arrangement is returned? The space denotes the fact that the things are constructed of collision events? Since the first beginnings, atoms may change their directions in the collisions - some plasticity must exist in order to account for the observed causality - two prior connected collisions define a trajectory of a first beginning. And two such first beginnings constitute a collision event therefore the next collision events could be defined in a system of collisions – leading to a self-reconstruction, self-preservation. This very mechanism is also an explanation of the three dimensions of space, observed.

Regular collision systems are the electrons, neutrons, nuclei of atoms starting with Hydrogen and extending all the way to the neutron stars. The difference of photons from such massive systems is only the fact that the elements of photons not always present in the system.

Could a special geometry of collision system effect a part of itself to eliminate a collision event or a whole electron and start a new life with the unwinding of DNA?

Could our thoughts be new creations of collision events?

Am I bullshitting or telling the truth? I'm not sure. I know that by going back to the basics and redefining the fundamental concepts of space, time and mass and reinterpreting the concept of infinity I must have gotten closer to the truth. Did I miss something?

Will you accept this as Physics or will you stay with the bullshit as sold to you? Even if you know that it is most likely bullshit and not true, not even concerned with truth? The indifference of general public comes in play: “It's over my head! - I don't care! - What's in it for me?!”

Composite Atom Bullshit

That little side-tract I had to take before introducing the bullshit of composite atom. It came from experiments of nucleus destruction: When bombarded, the nuclei of atoms may release - besides the most common photons - electrons, alpha-particles or nuclei of Helium 4 and neutrons or sometimes even protons or Hydrogen 1 nuclei. Indeed all the observations of nuclei indicate that there is a homogenous nucleus inside of every atom, but one needed to secret this bullshit about the nuclei being composed of neutrons and protons - just because the bullshit was unavoidable! It led to major problems, the necessity of a pile of bullshit like negative binding energy, quarks and gluons nonsense, still it lives on for over a century now!

Since the quantum mechanics went far from representing the reality – "It is just this lack of concern with truth – this indifference to how things really are – that I regard as of the essence of bullshit" – it opened the flood gates before such nonsense as dark matter and dark energy.

The dark matter was introduced to account for the galactic velocity distribution. If we assume that the good old Newtonian gravitational constant is universal and constant everywhere - contradicting in turn to the very principle discovered by Albert Einstein that the mass present deforms the space in its surroundings -, then there is a need to add substantial amount of gravitating mass to the galaxies to model the velocity distribution. Once that leap was made - anything goes! The nonsense of non-baryonic dark matter was floated and followed closely by dark energy.

Indeed the observed velocity distribution could be achieved by modifying the gravitational constant, as expected from the Einstein discovered effect of mass present.

Once a nonsense is introduced by bullshiter it is very hard to get rid of it. Even Newton had a hard time to fight the epicycle bullshit...

The Math of Bullshit

The problem becomes almost un-solvable when the bullshit is introduced as a mathematical solution.

The dark matter dark energy points to a mathematical blunder of Einstein himself and the introduction of gluon and quarks provided a disguise for the pure mathematical representation, claiming that these are the "real" carriers of quantum numbers...

Once the mathematical exercise showed some results in describing the real observed responses the concern over the validity of claims related to the elements of mathematical representation was suppressed. Hence the name Standard Model was introduced and is being worshipped by bullshiters.

Recently there is a fight between the experimentalists at Brookhaven National Laboratory and the theoretical physicists. The results of heavy ion collision experiments do not support the Standard Model - but the theoretical physicists always can add another parameter (Higgs boson expectation) and fudge their equations!

As we see, math is an excellent tool for bullshiters. Dark matter, dark energy, magnetars, quarks and gluons, strings (super) and brains all introduced and supported by elegant - bullshit - math.

Before we get too depressed seeing the sea of false reflections of bullshit physics threatening to drown us lets cheer-up on the bonus bullshit of global warming!

When the observed atmospheric carbon dioxide concentration became clearly effected by human activity (burning of fossil fuel to produce electricity) some felt the need to drum-up support for preventive measures by introducing a doomsday scenario of runaway greenhouse effect and global warming. This is bullshit because one was talking without really knowing what he was talking about simply because the Planet Earth is so complex that its responses could not be predicted. Yes, the increase of carbon dioxide concentration in the Earth's atmosphere is real, the recent increase is caused by the burning of earlier sequestered carbon containing fossil fuels like natural gas, oil and coal. The concerned scientists could avoid the bullshit by reporting only the facts and not going into telling prophecies!

Why is this urge in physics to bullshit?

It is simply unavoidable...