In the latest glorious news, we find that our deaths have now come much sooner—thanks to the Chilean earthquake that struck last week.
According to the top, THE TOP, scientists who work at NASA—you know, those guys that can predict the weather to the hundreth of a degree hundreds of years from now because they know exactly what the weather was billions of years ago... yet somehow can't seem to predict the weather a week in advance—our clocks are no longer running on 24 hours a day.
Richard Gross, a scientist at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif., and colleagues calculated that Saturday's quake shortened the day by 1.26 microseconds.
OMG.OMG.OMG. Does this mean we are going to have to change our whole
culture? Are we going to have to buy new clocks, adjust our work and
sleep schedules? Will we even get paid for 40 hour work weeks now? Could it be that the French have been ahead of the game with their 35 hour work weeks this whole time?
Earth's days may have gotten a little bit shorter since the massive earthquake in Chile, but don't feel bad if you haven't noticed. The difference would be only about one-millionth of a second.
Hmm. One MILLIONTH... of a second.
Wait, this is news? This is something to get the media all wee wee'd up about?
Certainly that can't be all there is to this story. This story is from Yahoo News via Space.com. Note the generalities I have highlighted...
The massive 8.8 earthquake that struck Chile may have changed the entire Earth's rotation and shortened the length of days on our planet, a NASA scientist said Monday.
The quake, the seventh strongest earthquake in recorded history, hit Chile Saturday and should have shortened the length of an Earth day by 1.26 microseconds, according to research scientist Richard Gross at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. One microsecond is one-millionth of a second long.
“This change should be permanent,” Gross told SPACE.com today. There is a chance the Earth’s rotation could relax over time, but it is too early to tell, he said.
The computer model used by Gross and his colleagues to determine the effects of the Chile earthquake effect also found that it should have moved Earth's figure axis by about 3 inches (8 cm or 27 milliarcseconds).
Glad to know scientists are sure. I mean, we have history to guide us. Right?
Strong earthquakes have altered Earth's days and its axis in the past. The 9.1 Sumatran earthquake in 2004, which set off a deadly tsunami, should have shortened Earth's days by 6.8 microseconds and shifted its axis by about 2.76 inches...
Again with the hypothesis. I thought these guys were good enough to know for certain about these kinds of things. And, why did that much larger earthquake and tsunami only shift the Earth's axis 2.76 inches when this smaller Chilean earthquake shifted us 3 inches?
So, after all these mega-thrust earthquakes this past millenia, wouldn't our axis be off by a few feet by now? Why haven't we demanded government intervention to make it go back? Why haven't we enacted tax legislation to subsidize some corporatation tied to the government legislatures to tell us how to live our lives so we can fix that ... tilt?
Could there be alternative causes?
One Earth day is about 24 hours, or 86,400 seconds, long. Over the course of a year, the length of a day normally changes gradually by about one millisecond, which is 1,000 microseconds.
That variation is due to seasonal variations in the Earth’s ocean currents and the atmosphere’s jet stream, Gross said. As the jet stream shifts southward during the winter months in the Earth’s northern hemisphere, the length of the day gradually changes, he said.
In the past, Gross has said that Earth’s rotation slows down slightly in those winter months, then picks back up in the summer.
So, our tilts are natural. (Please re-read that sentence again before making snide remarks below. You are a bunch of children!) They occur all the time. They occur naturally throughout history.
Then why bring this up?
Give me a shout when we have to take back leap year. Then I'll get interested.
At least we can still blame plate-tectonics on global warming.
Save the Earth.... REUNITE PANGEA!
[UPDATE:] Man 200 years ago caused the start of RAPID global warming that started the RAPID glacial melting. Some reports point to the ship captains of the 1700's who first explored our nation's coastlines as the reason for the glaciers beginning their retreat-o-doom. That was when white man first laid their eyes on them, right?