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Mar 23, 2017 at 12:04 PM by Supertroll

I wasn't comparing the two, in total, at all. I didn't "denigrate the achievements of one to build up the other". In fact I said, "Galileo did some pretty good work", but it wasn't relevant to the point I was making.

Yes, Galileo did a lot of good Maths and Physics, but it wasn't to do with the planets orbiting the Sun. That was all about Copernicus, Tycho Brahe's results, Kepler and finally Newton, whose laws showed that the planets obeyed the same rules as falling apples. The planets weren't made of some celestial stuff that went around in circles within circles.

My point is that by always harping on about Galileo and planets circling the Sun, which they don't do, and his supposedly dramatic battle with Roman Catholicism, which might have been more of a personal feud with the Pope and involved international politics as well as him being difficult to get on with, people are praising Galileo where he was wrong and ignoring his work where he was a great success, which isn't being questioned, so wasn't part of my argument.

Mar 23, 2017 at 2:12 PM | Registered CommenterRobert Christopher

Mar 23, 2017 at 1:10 PM | Radical Rodent

Those detailed to protect the life of the PM, did that by getting the PM away from the incident, to one of various unknown destinations, by one of various available routes and modes of transport.

How do you know she even left the Houses of Parliament?! News footage?

Mar 23, 2017 at 1:43 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie


I have witnessed tactical howlers by armed Met officers around central London repeatedly over the years.

Sentries get bored + sloppy - I spent 3 days at County Hall last year watching the security around Westminster and sighing, shaking my head and rolling my eyes. A small combat seasoned team would eat them alive.

We have been "lucky" that for the most part the morons with sparking wires in their heads haven't done their homework - this will change.

Mar 23, 2017 at 1:21 PM | Registered Commentertomo

Tomo, TinyCO2, et al: what puzzles me about the London attack was that the security services bundled the PM out of the Houses of Parliament – the centre of government in the UK – into a car, to be driven… where?

Why did they remove her from the (relative) security of the citadel of the Palace of Westminster into the open? Okay, so the car might have been bullet-proof, but it certainly would not be RPG-proof. Also, now that they have revealed this tactic, any prospective terrorist now knows how to get their target into the open, and can plan accordingly.

(I do hope I am not the only one noticing this.)

Mar 23, 2017 at 1:10 PM | Registered CommenterRadical Rodent

Robert, comparing two giants of science to determine who is the greater is a rather pointless exercise, especially if you denigrate the achievements of one to build up the other. To claim that Galileo did not employ mathematics is a travesty. He did not invent new mathematics but employed known mathematics. In particular this was used to explain falling bodies, the pendulum and cometary motion. His astronomical work holds first place, but perhaps of greater significance was his new combination of mathematics and experimental physics. I believe this is why he is, or was, held in such high esteem by Hawking and Einstein.

Mar 23, 2017 at 12:04 PM | Unregistered CommenterSupertroll

All media love a disaster and wallow in them. The disadvantage of the TV media is that they stop reporting anything else until they've milked everything they can from th subject. So on the day the Irish terrorist died, we got almost nothing but that all morning. Will we be feting ISIS leaders one day because they choose to stop killing people?

Personally I like a good news mix, which is why I pick and choose the news I read from written sources.

Mar 23, 2017 at 10:53 AM | Unregistered CommenterTinyCO2

re: London Attack

over 20 years + we have seen "tolerance" for violent, unhinged religiously motivated nutters from the UK's police forces (and "security services"). The laws against "that sort of thing" are there - it's just that they are asymmetrically applied through what certainly looks like a "progressive" racism filter.

It *is* speculation at the moment - but one has to wonder if the attacker who it's repeatedly been asserted was "known to the police" - wandered around unmolested for some considerable time shooting his mouth off with the confidence of somebody who knows he'll be "tolerated".

As to fully arming the police - the recent incident in Paris where the armed officer was compromised by a knife wielder shows that that isn't a panacea.

Let's see who the nutter was and perhaps take some proportionate measures to mitigate the risk. Taxpayer funded holidays in Raqqa come to mind.

Mar 23, 2017 at 10:46 AM | Registered Commentertomo

Mar 23, 2017 at 7:40 AM by Supertroll
"... elevates Kepler."

Galileo was amazed by what he saw through his telescope, but he didn't invent the instrument, he didn't do anything Mathematical (he was a Professor of Mathematics, after all) and he thought the planets circled the Sun. And it does sound like he annoyed a lot of people!

Kepler took Tycho Brahe's astronomical data and 'did some Mathematics', then came up with some laws (that still work :) ):

"... planets sweep out equal areas in equal times—Kepler's second law of planetary motion"

"... all planets move in ellipses, with the sun at one focus—Kepler's first law of planetary motion."

"[And Kepler's Third Law:]... (approximately) "The square of the periodic times are to each other as the cubes of the mean distances."

That's Physics!

PS: I knew Kepler used Tycho Brahe's data, but I didn't realise just how closely they worked together: Kepler worked for Tycho Brahe.)

PPS: I also noted "Conversely, Sir Oliver Lodge observed that Kepler was somewhat disdainful of astrology, as Kepler was "continually attacking and throwing sarcasm at astrology, but it was the only thing for which people would pay him, and on it after a fashion he lived." (Birmingham University Physics graduates should appreciate the joke, re PPS.)

Mar 23, 2017 at 10:45 AM | Registered CommenterRobert Christopher

Ross Lea
1 The UK is rightly proud of policing by consent, I think that Armed Policing by Consent would also be acceptable to a large majority.

2 I agree, these days there are very few people who don't have access to 24 hour News Channels where minute by minute coverage of people dieing in the street are available for terrorist sympathizers around the world. For those who take the view terrorists shouldn't be allowed to run our lives then in the situation where after the first half hour not a lot of new information was being added then 5 minute updates every half hour would have been sufficient.

Mar 23, 2017 at 10:03 AM | Unregistered CommenterSandyS

Pcar Mar 23, 2017 at 3:10 AM
Thanks for the links. I would make two observations
1. It is time for all police officers in the UK to be armed, Police are armed in N.I. for personal protection and to better protect the public. The terrorist threat in mainland UK is just a serious as it is in NI. If the uniformed police officer killed had side arms he would probably be still alive. If the three off duty officers had been armed they may have been able to intervene at an earlier stage.
2. The press coverage was totally over the top and played in to the hands of the terrorist. This coverage was infinitely repetitive and irresponsible in the circumstances. In these circumstances press coverage should stick to a simple statement of the facts by a senior police officer. To give the “oxygen of publicity” to the terrorist in this way is to give aid to the terrorists.

Mar 23, 2017 at 9:30 AM | Unregistered CommenterRoss Lea

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