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Mon Oct 19, 2020, 04:21 PM

The sun'll come up tomorrow!

We worried what the near future would bring after World War I, the Great Depression, World War II, the Cuban Missile Crisis and riots of the 60s, inflation and shortages of the 70s, Reagan/Contra and the H.W. Bush S&L Scandals of the late 80s and early 90s, Bush II and Cheney's Iraq/Afghanistan Lies. And somehow, usually after a Democrat took over, we managed to get through it.

This is from my 1958 book "Pictorial Astronomy" by Dinsmore Alter.


In a book published in 1884, S. P, Langley ended his discussion with a parable that applies just as well today as then:

"I have read somewhere a story about a race of ephemeral insects who live but an hour. To those who are born in the early morning the sunrise is the time of youth. They die of old age while its beams are yet gathering force, and only their descendants live on to midday: while it is another race which sees the sun decline, from that which saw it rise. Imagine the sun about to set, and the whole nation of mites gathered under the shadow of some mushroom (to them ancient as the sun itself) to hear what the wisest philosopher has to say of the gloomy prospect. If I remember aright, he first told them, incredible as it might seem, there was not only a time in the world's youth when the mushroom itself was young, but that the sun in those early ages was in the eastern, not the western, sky. Since then, he explained, the eyes of scientific ephemera had followed it, and established by induction from vast experience the "Great Law of Nature," that it moved only westward; and he showed that since it was now nearing the western horizon, science herself pointed to the conclusion that it was about to disappear forever, together with the great race of ephemera for whom it was created.
"What his hearers thought of this discourse I do not remember, but I have heard that the sun rose again the next morning."

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