We have all heard the talk for the past couple of years: December 21st, 2012 is the day the world will end. YNN's Bill Carey says if you put off Christmas shopping, putting all your money into a big pre-apocalyptic vacation, you probably made a mistake.
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SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- If you're surfing the web this Saturday, NASA hopes you come across its newest video.
“If you're watching this video, it means one thing. The world didn't end yesterday.”
NASA has led the campaign to try to convince people that all this talk of an end to the world on Friday is just talk. All based on a misinterpretation of the Mayan Calendar. That calendar reached the end Friday, but even the descendants of the Mayans living in present day Mexico say all that means is you go back to the beginning and start again.
People behind the "end of the world" claim have different scenarios. One has a planet, long hidden by the sun, suddenly careening into the Earth.
The problem is we should have seen the planet heading our way by now. But, the proponents have an explanation for all that. They say all of the people manning all of the telescopes around the world are involved in a massive cover up.
“Can you imagine thousands of astronomers who observe the skies on a nightly basis keeping the same secret from the public for several years?” said Don Yeomans, NASA Near Earth Program.
Other theories are that the Earth will suddenly roll over in its orbit. Not possible, say scientists. Or that its magnetic poles will shift. That takes thousands of years to happen and the only effect is to make some compasses obsolete. Oh and did we mention massive solar flares? No indication of any apocalyptic outbursts, so far.
Intellectually, we all realize these claims are silly, but such predictions are nothing new. Various groups and religions have prophesied an "end of times" again and again over thousands of years.
“Maybe it's a kind of, to use a Freudian concept, a death wish. In other words, sometimes, maybe, I think people want this all to end. I mean that's a pretty harsh thing to say, but, I mean, why would people be so passionate about expecting, and almost hoping, for the prophesy to come true,” said Darryl Caterine, Le Moyne College Religious Historian.
So, the evidence is clear. The world is not going away on Friday. But if Jon Cusack shows up at your house Friday with a limousine? What the heck, get in.
There has been something of an economic boost from all this talk about the end of the world. Various stores are reporting a big jump in sales of so-called "survival kits" and manufacturers of "pre-formed" underground shelters report their business has been up substantially.