Every New Year I publish my guess as to who will be the person who did something in the previous twelve months that will be remembered in 500 years.
Yearly choices for Probaway Person of the Year.
- 2012 – Zebrafish research-technique advances made it possible to observe drug interactions within living animals.
- 2011 – Craig Venter laid the groundwork for creating entirely new forms of life (greater than species) out of computer-generated DNA sequences.
- 2010 – Nadya Suleman (Octomom) and the society that created this travesty of good sense will be remembered into the distant future by many hungry people.
- 2009 – Jimmy Wales for Wikipedia, which will be still be used after our current computer operating systems are surpassed and forgotten.
- 2008 – Cesar Millan (the dog whisperer) because he shows people how to relate to dogs and people much better than anyone else. His videos and techniques will be remembered and used as long as there are people and dogs.
It is half way through the year, so it is time to start watching carefully for something really unique and memorable that is happening. The idea of Probaway Person of the Year was originally developed because TIME magazine’s Person of the Year has been consistently NOT memorable, at least in the long run. For example, last year’s, The Protester, is totally forgettable when compared to numerous wars of the last 500 years that killed millions of people. When viewed on a longer time scale the protests were not particularly noteworthy, and now even six months later they are almost forgotten. TIME seems bound to choose the most newsworthy person of the previous few weeks with little consideration of the lasting fame of the person’s accomplishments.
Although Craig Venter was chosen in 2011 he appears to be on track to create even more astonishing new things which will be game changers for the way we humans proceed into the future. Here is an interview with Venter published in WIRED Magazine. My choice for person of the year will depend on what is announced and on what else happens.
One very worrying possibility is that Israel, possibly at the command of Benjamin Netanyahu, will attack Iran with atomic weapons in an effort to prevent Iran from getting those weapons themselves. The problem for Israel is that the targets are so very far from their own home bases and they can probably only bring off a very few air strikes successfully. Because some of the targets are deeply buried it will be impossible to reliably destroy them with conventional weapons. Therefore, if or when the attack comes it will probably be with atomic bombs, and that will open the Pandora’s box of atomic weapon development and manufacture throughout the world. The US has been promising to protect non-nuclear states from attack, but by permitting Israel to attack without severe punishment, they will be sending a clear message that every other country needs its own atomic weapons under its own control. The world when filled with nuclear weapons will be on the brink of destruction and the vicissitudes of time will eventually push it over the brink into chaos.
Another contender for Probaway Person of the Year is the US Supreme Court for creating the Super Fund Law. I say creating because without their approval it could not have been implemented. What they appear to have done is to permit unlimited quantities of money to be secretly given to political causes. The problem with that is that in a government elected by popular vote those who control the media control the vote, and those who can spend the most money on the media control the media. Thus the Supreme Court has sold America to the highest bidder with the most money. If that is truly the case then America as a Democratic Republic is already gone and if so that will be the biggest event, not only of the year but of the century. The greatest political and economic power the world has ever known destroyed by a simple vote of a handful of non-elected officials.
I truly hope this is not what the Super Fund Law means!