Doomsday hysteria grips Russia


Survival kits and trips to hell, doomsday hysteria grips Russia …

Source:  RT – 01 December, 2012

RIA Novosti / Sergey Yolkin

RIA Novosti / Sergey Yolkin

Doomsday hysteria has gripped Russia and some of its neighbors. Travel agencies are selling tours to either heaven or hell and people are stocking up on food and fuel. Officials are publicly denying the apocalypse, hoping to calm the hype.

Those awaiting Doomsday have three weeks to finish their preparations before the date of the much publicized apocalypse allegedly predicted by Mayan calendar, that is going to happen on December 21, 2012.

Thousands of people across Russia keep stocking up their back rooms and balconies with food, fuel and other supplies they might need when disaster strikes. Some are even moving outside of cities because of the widely spread rumors that cities would be impossible to survive in after an apocalypse on Earth.

According to one of the most popular scenarios, on December 21 the sun is going to line up with the center of our Milky Way galaxy which will cause an entire blackout on Earth and a wave of different natural disasters.

Doomsday merchandize offered in Russia and Ukraine include survival kits. In the Siberian city of Tomsk such itemsfor “meeting the end of the world” include ID cards, notepads, canned fish, a bottle of vodka, rope, a piece of soap, among other items. The packages are said to be popular among customers, more than 1,000 kits have been already sold, the company says.

Ukrainian entrepreneurs also offer a version of a doomsday kit. Just like Tomsk package, the Ukrainian one also includes alcohol: champagne for ladies and vodka for gentlemen. The rest of the kit consist of jack-knife, two-minute noodles, shampoo, soap, rope, matches and condoms.

Marina Mendelson wedding agency sells Last Day sets in Tomsk. (RIA Novosti / Yakov Andreev)
Marina Mendelson wedding agency sells Last Day sets in Tomsk. (RIA Novosti / Yakov Andreev)

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Not all doom and gloom

An apocalypse kit is not the only way for the entrepreneurial minded to cash in on the end of the world hype.

One Ukrainian enterprise is selling tours to heaven and hell for December 21 promising full return of money in case of “not getting to heaven or hell.” A trip to heaven would cost about $15, while trip to the underworld is more expensive at around $18. The agency explains difference in price by saying that Hell should be more fun.

While Ukrainian trips are even said by the firm behind to be just for fun, some individuals in the Russian city of Nizhny Novgorod offered far more expensive doomsday fair – one being a salvation trip in an arc. An internet ad offered seats in the arc for just 80,000-150,000 rubles, which is approximately $2,600-5,000.

Bars and nightclubs are getting ready for apocalypse day in their own way announcing theme parties and inventing special cocktails like “Total Recall” – an extremely alcoholic drink that makes you “recall your entire life.”

But doomsday hysteria isn’t isolated to just the former soviet Republic. In France authorities had to ban access to a mountain that doomsday theorists believe will be the only safe spot during the apocalypse on December 21.

At the birthplace of Mayan calendar, Mexico and Guatemala agencies offer tours “The end of the world with Maya” and “The world of Maya 2012.”

Pictures advertizing tickets to heaven sold for $15. Images taken from pokupon.uaPictures advertizing tickets to heaven sold for $15. Images taken from pokupon.ua

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Russian officials cancel apocalypse

Meanwhile, in Russia rapidly growing doomsday hype has sparked a negative reaction from authorities.

Russia`s Emergency Ministry is not expecting any global cataclysms in the near future, the head of EMERCOM Vladimir Puchkov said on Friday, adding that those worried are free to call the Ministry hotline to talk about their concerns.

Another senior official took a more emotional stance about doomsday speculations. Russia`s Chief Medical Officer of Health Gennady Onishenko lashed out at those publicizing the apocalypse warning that they would end up in court.

“This directly influences people`s health. When they depress you and say that in less than one month everything is going to end, there are many people, who believe this,” he said.

Russian State Duma deputies wrote an open letter urging media to stop speculating about the doomsday. The deputy head of the Duma committee on Science and Technology publicly promised that no apocalypse is happening on December 21.

“In our committee there are academics and scientists, and with all responsibility we state that there will be no doomsday. Who made that up and circulates this around?” he asked.

Mayan legacy

The speculations about December 21, 2012, doomsday are prompted by the Mayan calendar ending on this very day.

The Mayan civilization reached its height from 300 AD to 900 AD was based in modern day Mexico and Central America. Mayans were good astronomers and created very precise calendars.

Their Long Count calendar begins in 3,114 BC, measuring time in 394-year periods known as Baktuns. The thirteenth Baktun ends around Dec 21, 2012, which first produced rumors about the end of the world.

Despite numerous scientists and Mayan descendants denying the connection between the end of the calendar and the end of the world the rumors quickly got out of control causing public hysteria.

It is not known why this particular end of the world theory became so popular. Over two dozen doomsday predictions have failed to materialize since the beginning of the 20th century.

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“What Ever Happened to the Millennium Bug?” by Grumpa Joe


Posted on 28/11/2012 by Grumpa Joe in Grumpa Joe’s Place

Year 2000 Time Bomb Disposal Kit

Year 2000 Time Bomb Disposal Kit (Photo credit: rjw1)

Does anyone remember the millennium bug? Back in the late 1990′s the planet was a buzz about a worldwide catastrophe, “the bug.” Personal computers came into existence in the seventies. At the time, computers possessed limited storage capacity. Programmers allowed only two digits to define a year. After all, in nineteen eighty, who could imagine the world lasting until the year two thousand? Between two thousand, and the limited capacity of early computer memory, no one could imagine that using only two digits to define a year was a problem. Finally in the late nineteen nineties the world became aware. What will happen on New Year’s eve of 1999 when the calendar turns over and it becomes the year 2000? Will the year 00 mean 1900 or 2000? Imagine the confusion. What would happen to the stock market? What about our savings in the bank? Would we earn the interest of 1900 or the interest of 2000? Worse yet, would those on the verge of retirement in 2000 be set back to 1900 and not be recognized as being born?

The millennium bug caused a rash of business to change out all old computers with new ones that could handle the four digit year. I remember my company racing to check computers to decide if they contained any software that limited the year to two digits. If they identified a problem they replaced it, or bumped it down to an application where the year was not a factor. The whole world sat on the edge of their seats waiting for the clock to turn, and the computers to crash. It is now twelve years after the fact, and I have yet to hear of a problem related to the millennium bug. What that means is we converted every computer on time, or that the millennium bug was a non-problem.

Today, I hear a lot of discussion about a similar catastrophe, the “fiscal cliff.” What will happen to the economy if we reinstate the Clinton era taxes? Many pundits, Congressmen, Senators, and “we the Sheeple” believe it will destroy the economy and send us into another more deeper recession. Really? Who has any definitive knowledge or facts to back that up? I think it would make a great experiment to let it happen i.e. do nothing to avoid the fiscal cliff. Let the taxes go into effect. It is a democrat’s dream to get all that extra money into the coffers (or trough). Perhaps we would learn once and for all about economics. Is economics a real science, or is it a political folly? If it is a science, the democrats will be proven wrong and the people they profess to protect will suffer. If they are right, economics will be proven more witchcraft than science.

It might be interesting to take a simple poll and see how you feel about this argument. Click on the poll below.

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Chinese Man Spends Life Savings to Build 80-Ton ‘Apocalypse-Proof Noah’s Ark’


Citing Mayan Doomsday fears, Chinese Man Spends Life Savings to Build 80-Ton ‘Apocalypse-Proof Noah’s Ark’

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By 

Posted on November 29, 2012 in THE BLAZE

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Rash decisions motivated by intense fears over apocalyptic predictions are nothing new. In 2011, Christian broadcaster Harold Camping promised that the world would come to an end. Embracing his claims, some of his followers sold all of their belongings in anticipation, only to find themselves disappointed and broke. Another doomsday prediction — the dreaded Mayan apocalypse — is slated for Dec. 21. And one Chinese man, Lu Zhenghai, is building a massive ship to ensure that he and his family are protected.

Chinese Man Lu Zhenghai Builds Moder Day Noahs Ark | Mayan Doomsday

This photo taken on November 24, 2012 shows the unfinished boat built by Lu Zhenhai, a man from Urumqi, Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, afraid that his home would be submerged in a doomsday flood in 2012. Lu said he was worried that the apocalypse would happen in 2012, so he decided to invest all his money, about 160,500 USD into building what he hopes will be his own indestructible ark. Credit: AFP/Getty Images

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China News Service (CNS) reports that the man, who resides in the northwest region of the country, has poured his life savings into building the boat. So far, Zhenghai has spent $160,000 on the vessel, which already measures 65 feet and will inevitably weigh 80 tons (it was apparently built with 10 tons of timber and an additional 60 tons of steel).

In an interview with CNS, Zhenghai explained his reasoning for creating the ship, which he commenced in 2010 when his fears over a monumental flood apparently took form. The Daily Maildubs the boat the man’s very own “apocalypse-proof ‘Noah’s Ark.’”

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Chinese Man Lu Zhenghai Builds Moder Day Noahs Ark | Mayan Doomsday

Credit: AFP/Getty Images

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“I’m afraid that when the end of the world comes in 2012, flood waters will destroy my house,” he said, according to a translation by The Huffington Post. ”So I took all my savings and invested in the construction of this boat. When the time comes, everyone can take refuge in it.”

With the alleged Mayan destruction just one month away, the ship is reportedly incomplete due to lack of funds. While there is more work to do, Zhenghai claims he won’t be distraught if a flood doesn’t arrive in the coming weeks. After all, the vessel can be used as a ferry and he hopes, at the least, that it will be revered as a tourist attraction worth seeing.

Chinese Man Lu Zhenghai Builds Moder Day Noahs Ark | Mayan Doomsday

Credit: AFP/Getty Images

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The creation of the modern-day ark comes as scientists attempt to debunk the notion that the Mayans were predicting the end of the world. The Houston Museum of Science, among other institutions, has taken explicit aim at these doomsday theories.

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“Premarital Sex Anyone?” by Nirav Karani


Nirav Karani

By Nirav Karani

It is funny how people talk about wanting to sleep with just one person in their whole life and how they want to do this sacrosanct act with that special person only. Yes, it sounds very beautiful to say and all that, but I wonder exactly how much love is there between a couple having sex on their wedding night having met about four and a half times before that (Sitting silently amongst ten family members of either side doesn’t really count, but I’m giving it a half). So if you’re pervert enough to do it on the first opportunity once you’ve been ‘certified’ by the society, why the hypocrisy? Of course, it isn’t a social obligation to fornicate once you’re married, is it? Maybe there is a no-hymen clause in one of the post marriage rituals. I don’t know.

How about a couple that have been going around for say, more than a year? Chances that they are in love, that they know each other a little better, that the act – if they do it – will be more meaningful, are at least a tad more, don’t you think?

Maybe age is a factor, you might say. College students are just naïve; they don’t have an inkling what real love is really about. My grandmother’s brother was married before his 15th birthday. Not much more than a year later, he was pacing down the hospital corridor before he got the good news and started jumping with joy, hugging everyone in sight. Ha! Quite a spectacle it is to imagine that! Of course, people used to get married that early those days and that was the norm. Now people want to study and earn and be ‘settled’ before take the vows. Unfortunately, their hormones are not quite attuned with the new arrangement.

Having said all this, I must mention that I’m not trying to glorify sex at all. Not for one moment. It’s a beautiful act, no doubt. But for all those who claim that it is our very basic instinct, I am afraid there is a wake-up call lurking somewhere. Lust is indeed one of the lower ways in which our energy manifests itself. After all, one can fuck only so many times. And let’s face it, it cannot be a source of lasting happiness.

And lest you think this is some sort of philosophical shit, believe me, I am speaking from experience. Of course, my virginity variable is firmly set to one and there are no indications that that is going to change anytime soon. Yes, poor me! (Programming does get into your head, doesn’t it? Besides, I think a part of me thinks it’s almost fashionable to exhibit geekiness. You think?) But just because I haven’t played the real match, it doesn’t mean that I don’t do net practice either. And honestly, my experiences in meditation have been much more gratifying.

Anyway, I still question the hype, and a sense of mystery, even guilt, and most of all, the hypocrisy surrounding – to quote Sheldon Cooper – ‘the messy, unsanitary act that involves loud and unnecessary appeals to the deity’.

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