Stephen Hawking’s Code
Stephen Hawking’s recent suggestion that aliens almost certainly exist has fascinated many. In a universe with 100 billion galaxies each containing hundreds of millions of stars, there simply must be alien life, claims the British astrophysics guru in a new television documentary series that aired on the Discovery Channel this week.
Though he says it is, it’s a mistake to presume that Hawking’s British brain is merely mathematical. If some extraterrestrial life has been transmitting coded messages to us on Earth for a long time, but mankind has been too dumb to understand them, then the Brits, as a people of understatement, are equally bad for being too subtle. I have to admire Hawking’s genius after hearing what he said about alien life, which was fraught with literary and anthropological metaphors, but perhaps a British Home Secretary, if he were smart enough, could pick up on some of the astrophysicist’s underlying clues about life here on Earth today.
Aliens, Hawkin explains, might already be on this planet. Their existence could take the forms of, according to Hawking, “some basic animals such as worms,” which have been on Earth for millions of years, and might “develop into something we wouldn’t want to meet.”
Let’s read his comments from a totally different perspective. They become very interesting considering recent outcries against Islamic and Chinese immigrants in the UK and Europe. The danger of aliens, as Hawking explains it, is imminent: “I imagine they might exist in massive ships, having used up all the resources from their own planet. Such advanced aliens would perhaps become nomads, looking to conquer and colonize whatever planets they can reach,” said Hawking.
Given the last yellow-peril scare in the West concerning the Vietnamese boat people happened in the 1980s, it may be the right time to be apocalyptic again. China is quickly using up its own resources. In 2009, the Chinese burned 3.1 billion tonnes of coal, against a gross total national resource of 120 billion tonnes. This means a consumption lifetime of a mere 20 years, given an annual growth rate of 12 percent.
Perhaps new environmental technologies like wind power will help? Forget the coal. In order to feed 1.3 billion people, the country must sustain a total of 130 million hectares of agricultural land. Paddy fields are being cemented into urban land for apartment blocks for quick sale. Guangdong, the traditional rice barn of China, is already importing rice from Thailand.
With an annual import of 200 million tonnes of oil, Chinese oil companies’ executives and laborers are the new nomad breed reaching out to Iran, South America and Sudan. The Russians have gotten the message first and are clamping down on a few Chinatowns in Siberia and kicking out tens of thousands of Chinese hawkers.
Hawking predicted that after contact with aliens, “the outcome would be much as when Christopher Columbus first landed in America, which didn’t turn out very well for the Native Americans.” At last, a compliment. But can Columbus, like Confucius, be too colossal to be a worm? The guru might badly need to correct his vision as to what the future global boss is going to be like.