Phil Plait, aka the Bad Astronomer, is very good at debunking bad astronomy. His first book, which is quite good, is titled “Bad Astronomy.” (seeing a theme here?) In this post on his blog, he explains why the world isn’t going to end on December 21st. An excerpt:
Here’s the deal: According to the doomsday prophecy, the ancient Maya predicted the end of the world would occur on Dec. 21, 2012. We know this because that’s the date their calendar ends. While they weren’t specific about how Armageddon was to come about, there are a host of astronomical events that can and/or will occur that can reduce the Earth to a burned-out cinder.
Except not so much. Not a single thing I wrote in that previous paragraph basks in the warm glow of reality, despite being repeated ad nauseum by doomsday promulgators. It’s all nonsense, garbage, taurine feces, flim flam, and pifflery.
How so? Well, it just so happens I know a bit about this, and will happily (though grumpily) be your tour guide through this latest in a long (and, ironically, unending) series of dead-wrong end-of-the-world claims.
Welcome to the Maya Notpocalypse™.