It is clear that we cannot go up another two orders of magnitude as we have climbed the last five. If we did, we should have two scientists for every man, woman, child, and dog in the population, and we should spend on them twice as much money as we had. Scientific doomsday is therefore less than a century distant.
Derek J. de Solla Price
We seem to be heading for a state of affairs in which the determination of whether or not Doomsday has arrived will be made either by an automatic device ... or by a pre-programmed president who, whether he knows it or not, will be carrying out orders written years before by some operations analyst.
I think the most important thing is to take the long view on things. We live in such a 24/7, Twitter-fed, constant news cycle, and everything's a crisis, everything is terrible, everything is doomsday, everything is - if it doesn't get solved tomorrow, your presidency is going off the rails.
I don't think that artificial intelligence means doomsday, and I think many new jobs will be created, too. However, it is becoming increasingly unlikely that these new types of jobs will favor low-income demographics. We need to address the needs of those who will be left out of the new job market.
Jens Martin Skibsted
I don't think I can really believe in doomsday; I could hardly believe in rewards and punishments, in heaven or hell. As I wrote down in one of my sonnets - I seem to be always plagiarizing, imitating myself or somebody else for that matter - I think I am quite unworthy of heaven or of hell, and even of immortality.
Jorge Luis Borges
There were two different expectations in this land of the future. On the one hand the the optimistic belief in an unending progress with millenarianistic overtones and on the other hand the doomsday expectation of the final battle of Armageddon. Both are perspectives are uniquely American and both are inter-related.
For everyone who, having no artistic sense-that is to say, no submission to subjective reality-may have the knack of reasoning about art till doomsday, especially if he be, in addition, a diplomat or financier in contact with the 'realities' of the present day, is only too ready to believe literature is an intellectual game which is destined to gradually be abandoned as time goes on.
If you're listening to this, congratulations! You survived Doomsday. I'd like to apologize straightaway for any inconvenience the end of the world may have caused you. The earthquakes, rebellions, riots, tornadoes, floods, tsunamis, and of course the giant snake who swallowed the sun-I'm afraid most of that was our fault. Carter and I decided we should at least explain how it happened.
If you're listening to this, congratulations! You survived Doomsday. I'd like to apologize straightaway for any inconvenience the end of the world may have caused you. The earthquakes, rebellions, riots,tornadoes, floods, tsunamis, and of course the giant snake who swallowed the sun""I'm afraid most of that was our fault. Carter and I decided we should at least explain how it happened.
Since I've moved here, you have shown up at my door eight times. I obey the laws, I pay my taxes, and I haven't even gotten a parking ticket in my entire time as a driver. Yet if anything at all happens in the neighborhood, you appear at my door. I bet if a meteorite fell somewhere in the subdivision, you would be here asking me if I personally launched it out of my doomsday cannon.
Except the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ Jesus make a man sick of his opinions, he may hold them to doomsday for me; for no opinion, I repeat is Christianity, and no preaching of any plan of salvation is the preaching of the glorious gospel of the living God.
Many do not recognize the fact as they ought, that Satan has got men fast asleep in sin and that it is his great device to keep them so. He does not care what we do if he can do that. We may sing songs about the sweet by and by, preach sermons and say prayers until doomsday, and he will never concern himself about us, if we don't wake anybody up. But if we awake the sleeping sinner he will gnash on us with his teeth. This is our work - to wake people up.
I find the Doomsday picture Al Gore is painting - a six-meter sea level rise, fifteen times the IPCC number - entirely without merit...I protest vigorously the idea that the climate reacts like a home heating system to a changed setting of the thermostat: just turn the dial, and the desired temperature will soon be reached.
The Second Amendment is a doomsday provision, one designed for those exceptionally rare circumstances where all other rights have failed - where the government refuses to stand for reelection and silences those who protest; where courts have lost the courage to oppose, or can find no one to enforce their decrees. However improbable these contingencies may seem today, facing them unprepared is a mistake a free people get to make only once.
In the half-century of his life, a tick on the Doomsday clock, he had borne witness to the most unbelievable technological advances. He had started off listening to an old Bush radio in the corner of the living room and now he had a phone in his hand on which he could pretend to throw a scrunched-up piece of paper into a waste bin. The world had waited a long time for that.
My excellent colleagues have forgotten these bitter lessons of history. The prospect of tyranny may not grab the headlines the way vivid stories of gun crime usually do. But few saw the Third Reich coming until it was too late. The Second Amendment is a doomsday provision, one designed only for those exceptionally rare circumstances when all other rights have failed. A free people can only afford to make this mistake once.
Unless you're a psycho, there's no such thing as a vampire and there's no such thing as a werewolf. But there certainly are people who could be controlled by a drug like Scopolamine, to lose all will and do your bidding. That's what the whole voodoo zombie thing was about, with chemical mind control, so it is possible to have real zombies. Maybe the [doomsday] preppers weren't so wrong. I thought they were idiots. How can you prepare for a zombie apocalypse?
You might prove doctrine from the Bible till doomsday, and it would merely convince a people, but would not convert them. You might read the Bible from Genesis to Revelations, and prove every iota that you advance, and that alone would have no converting influence upon the people. Nothing short of a testimony by the power of the Holy Ghost would bring light and knowledge to them -- bring them in their hearts to repentance. Nothing short of that would ever do.
What most of these doomsday scenarios have gotten wrong is the fundamental idea of economics: people respond to incentives. If the price of a good goes up, people demand less of it, the companies that make it figure out how to make more of it, and everyone tries to figure out how to produce substitutes for it. Add to that the march of technological innovation (like the green revolution, birth control, etc.). The end result: markets figure out how to deal with problems of supply and demand.
Steven D. Levitt
LONG KNIFE BY THE SPINAL BUILT LIKE A RHINO PUSH THE 635 TO THE FINALS PEARL WHITE LIKE WHAT YOU SNIFFIN' IN YOUR SINUS THE FINEST VAGINAS DEMOLISHED BY MY DICK ONE YEAR FROM QUEENS TO THE TOP CREAM OF THE CROP SERVE A FIEND OUT MY SOCK FIVE MINUTES TILL THEY LEAN LIKE THE DROP NOW THEY SPINNING THROUGH THE FURNACE LIKE THE SCENE FROM THE ROCK HIDE SPINACH LIKE A DOOMSDAY PREPPER EVERY SUNDAY IN MY TUESDAY LEATHER NOW MY BEARD LOOK LIKE UDAY AND QUSAY PLAY THE POOL ON A COOL DAY
There pass the careless people That call their souls their own: Here by the road I loiter, How idle and alone. Ah, past the plunge of plummet, In seas I cannot sound, My heart and soul and senses, World without end, are drowned. His folly has not fellow Beneath the blue of day That gives to man or woman His heart and soul away. There flowers no balm to sain him From east of earth to west That's lost for everlasting The heart out of his breast. Here by the labouring highway With empty hands I stroll: Sea-deep, till doomsday morning, Lie lost my heart and soul.
His existence had always been comfortable, he had always held a clear picture of himself, his duties, and his place in a world. He saw that world as a place so full of turning gears he had no hope of comprehending how things fit together, so why even try? Now things were different, however. Now he wasn't just looking out from inside of the clockwork. Instead, he was actually seeing the final motion of the escapement-the ticking hands of the clock itself. And it was a doomsday clock. Both his feline and human instincts told him to let it be. It was not his problem, or his place to interfere. If the living world was destined to fall, let it happen, let it pass into history once and for all. Who was he to try to save it? But on the other hand, if the living world were lost, then there would never again be great cats to furjack... and couldn't it be that hearing the actual ticking of the clock gave one the responsibility to stop it?
Bowman was aware of some changes in his behavior patterns; it would have been absurd to expect anything else in the circumstances. He could no longer tolerate silence; except when he was sleeping, or talking over the circuit to Earth, he kept the ship's sound system running at almost painful loudness. / At first, needing the companionship of the human voice, he had listened to classical plays-especially the works of Shaw, Ibsen, and Shakespeare-or poetry readings from Discovery's enormous library of recorded sounds. The problems they dealt with, however, seemed so remote, or so easily resolved with a little common sense, that after a while he lost patience with them. / So he switched to opera-usually in Italian or German, so that he was not distracted even by the minimal intellectual content that most operas contained. This phase lasted for two weeks before he realized that the sound of all these superbly trained voices was only exacerbating his loneliness. But what finally ended this cycle was Verdi's Requiem Mass, which he had never heard performed on Earth. The "Dies Irae, " roaring with ominous appropriateness through the empty ship, left him completely shattered; and when the trumpets of Doomsday echoed from the heavens, he could endure no more. / Thereafter, he played only instrumental music. He started with the romantic composers, but shed them one by one as their emotional outpourings became too oppressive. Sibelius, Tchaikovsky, Berlioz, lasted a few weeks, Beethoven rather longer. He finally found peace, as so many others had done, in the abstract architecture of Bach, occasionally ornamented with Mozart. / And so Discovery drove on toward Saturn, as often as not pulsating with the cool music of the harpsichord, the frozen thoughts of a brain that had been dust for twice a hundred years.
Arthur C. Clarke
The night before brain surgery, I thought about death. I searched out my larger values, and I asked myself, if I was going to die, did I want to do it fighting and clawing or in peaceful surrender? What sort of character did I hope to show? Was I content with myself and what I had done with my life so far? I decided that I was essentially a good person, although I could have been better-but at the same time I understood that the cancer didn't care. I asked myself what I believed. I had never prayed a lot. I hoped hard, I wished hard, but I didn't pray. I had developed a certain distrust of organized religion growing up, but I felt I had the capacity to be a spiritual person, and to hold some fervent beliefs. Quite simply, I believed I had a responsibility to be a good person, and that meant fair, honest, hardworking, and honorable. If I did that, if I was good to my family, true to my friends, if I gave back to my community or to some cause, if I wasn't a liar, a cheat, or a thief, then I believed that should be enough. At the end of the day, if there was indeed some Body or presence standing there to judge me, I hoped I would be judged on whether I had lived a true life, not on whether I believed in a certain book, or whether I'd been baptized. If there was indeed a God at the end of my days, I hoped he didn't say, 'But you were never a Christian, so you're going the other way from heaven.' If so, I was going to reply, 'You know what? You're right. Fine.' I believed, too, in the doctors and the medicine and the surgeries-I believed in that. I believed in them. A person like Dr. Einhorn [his oncologist], that's someone to believe in, I thought, a person with the mind to develop an experimental treatment 20 years ago that now could save my life. I believed in the hard currency of his intelligence and his research. Beyond that, I had no idea where to draw the line between spiritual belief and science. But I knew this much: I believed in belief, for its own shining sake. To believe in the face of utter hopelessness, every article of evidence to the contrary, to ignore apparent catastrophe-what other choice was there? We do it every day, I realized. We are so much stronger than we imagine, and belief is one of the most valiant and long-lived human characteristics. To believe, when all along we humans know that nothing can cure the briefness of this life, that there is no remedy for our basic mortality, that is a form of bravery. To continue believing in yourself, believing in the doctors, believing in the treatment, believing in whatever I chose to believe in, that was the most important thing, I decided. It had to be. Without belief, we would be left with nothing but an overwhelming doom, every single day. And it will beat you. I didn't fully see, until the cancer, how we fight every day against the creeping negatives of the world, how we struggle daily against the slow lapping of cynicism. Dispiritedness and disappointment, these were the real perils of life, not some sudden illness or cataclysmic millennium doomsday. I knew now why people fear cancer: because it is a slow and inevitable death, it is the very definition of cynicism and loss of spirit. So, I believed.
Bliss?' I called. 'Yeah?' 'Check the drawers of the nightstand! She was playing with it in the middle of the night, and I think I remember taking it away and sticking it in there.' 'Okay!' Through the open door, I watched her circle around the edge of the bed. I walked in place for a few seconds, letting my feet drop a little heavier than necessary, then opened and closed the door like I'd gone back inside the bathroom. Then I hid in the space between the back of the bedroom door and the wall where I could just see through the crack between the hinges. She pulled open the top drawer, and my heartbeat was like a bass drum. I don't know when it had started beating so hard, but now it was all that I could hear. It wasn't like I was asking her to marry me now. I just knew Bliss, and knew she tended to panic. I was giving her a very big, very obvious hint so that she'd have time to adjust before I actually asked her. Then in a few months, when I thought she'd gotten used to the idea, I'd ask her for real. That was the plan anyway. It was supposed to be simple, but this felt... complicated. Suddenly, I thought of all the thousands of ways this could go wrong. What if she freaked out? What if she ran like she did our first night together? If she ran, would she go back to Texas? Or would she go to Cade who lived in North Philly? He'd let her stay until she figured things out, and then what if something developed between them? What if she just flat out told me no? Everything was good right now. Perfect, actually. What if I was ruining it by pulling this stunt? I was so caught up in my doomsday predictions that I didn't even see the moment that she found the box. I heard her open it though, and I heard her exhale and say, 'Oh my God.' Where before my mouth had been dry, now I couldn't swallow fast enough. My hands were shaking against the door. She was just standing there with her back to me. I couldn't see her face. All I could see was her tense, straight spine. She swayed slightly. What if she passed out? What if I'd scared her so much that she actually lost consciousness? I started to think of ways to explain it away. I was keeping it for a friend? It was a prop for a show? It was... It was... shit, I didn't know. I could just apologize. Tell her I knew it was too fast. I waited for her to do something-scream, run, cry, faint. Anything would be better than her stillness. I should have just been honest with her. I wasn't good at things like this. I said what I was thinking-no plans, no manipulation. Finally, when I thought my body would crumble under the stress alone, she turned. She faced the bed, and I only got her profile, but she was biting her lip. What did that mean? Was she just thinking? Thinking of a way to get out of it? Then, slowly, like the sunrise peeking over the horizon, she smiled. She snapped the box closed. She didn't scream. She didn't run. She didn't faint. There might have been a little crying. But mostly... she danced. She swayed and jumped and smiled the same way she had when the cast list was posted for Phaedra. She lost herself the same way she did after opening night, right before we made love for the first time. Maybe I didn't have to wait a few months after all. She said she wanted my best line tomorrow after the show, and now I knew what it was going to be.