SPECIAL SECTION: Message For Our “Friends” In The Middle Kingdom
You knuckle-dragging barbarians are still trying to muck with this site, so I’ll just repeat what I said last time.
Up your shit-kicking barbarian asses. Yes, barbarian! It took a bunch of sailors in Western Asia to invent a real alphabet instead of badly drawn cartoons to write with. So much for your “civilization.”
Yeah, the WORLD noticed you had to borrow the Latin alphabet to make Pinyin. Like with every other idea you had to steal from us “Foreign Devils” since you rammed your heads up your asses five centuries ago, you sure managed to bastardize it badly in the process.
Have you stopped eating bats yet? Are you shit-kickers still sleeping with farm animals?
Or maybe even just had the slightest inkling of treating lives as something you don’t just casually dispose of?
Zhōngguò shì gè hùndàn !!!
China is asshoe !!!
And here’s my response to barbarian “asshoes” like you:
OK, with that rant out of my system…
So Just this Once Justice Has Been Done
Kyle Rittenhouse goes free. Not guilty on all counts!
He shot some real dirtbags, though he didn’t know at the time just how dirtbag they were, so that can’t justify it. What justified it was the dirtbags were coming after him. He did miss one, and merely wound another (Grosskreutz, who should now be prosecuted for attacking Rittenhouse. Though maybe we owe him thanks because he blew up the persecution’s case with his testimony.)
A lot of real shitbags need to pay for this. Not just the rioters, but the persecution, the media, the political “leadership” in this country that came down against him when enough was out to acquit him almost immediately, on and on. Sure there will be defamation suits but that’s not enough. These people will probably launch gofundmes to pay their awards for them anyway; there are enough Leftist mushbrains to make that happen.
But in the meantime, we celebrate what we did get.
Loop it if you like; I will wait.
And justice, after all, is seeing that people get what they deserve, not just with criminal acts, but even in our personal lives.
Justice can be done. So…
Justice Must Be Done
The prior election must be acknowledged as fraudulent, and steps must be taken to prosecute the fraudsters and restore integrity to the system.
Nothing else matters at this point. Talking about trying again in 2022 or 2024 is hopeless otherwise. Which is not to say one must never talk about this, but rather that one must account for this in ones planning; if fixing the fraud is not part of the plan, you have no plan.
The Audit is definitely heating up. Let’s see if the Opposition manages to squelch it and its consequences. I’ll be honest; I expect it to be ignored by anyone capable of ordering Biden/Harris to step down.
Nevertheless, anything that can be done to make Biden look less legitimate is a worthy thing!
Lawyer Appeasement Section
OK now for the fine print.
This is the WQTH Daily Thread. You know the drill. There’s no Poltical correctness, but civility is a requirement. There are Important Guidelines, here, with an addendum on 20191110.
We have a new board – called The U Tree – where people can take each other to the woodshed without fear of censorship or moderation.
And remember Wheatie’s Rules:
1. No food fights
2. No running with scissors.
3. If you bring snacks, bring enough for everyone.
4. Zeroth rule of gun safety: Don’t let the government get your guns.
5. Rule one of gun safety: The gun is always loaded.
5a. If you actually want the gun to be loaded, like because you’re checking out a bump in the night, then it’s empty.
6. Rule two of gun safety: Never point the gun at anything you’re not willing to destroy.
7. Rule three: Keep your finger off the trigger until ready to fire.
8. Rule the fourth: Be sure of your target and what is behind it.
(Hmm a few extras seem to have crept in.)
Spot (i.e., paper) Prices
This week, 3PM Mountain Time, markets have closed for the weekend.
I looked earlier today and things were a bit higher, but right now it does look like gold is trying to drift downward…or is being pushed downward. I was about to say it looked solidly established in the 1850s-1860s but…nooope.
Physics — The “Standard Model”
I’m finally feeling well enough to try to take this on.
Last week I told the story of how all sorts of unexpected medium (~200 electron masses) and heavy weight particles (1800 electron masses and up) began turning up in particle physicists’ cloud chambers, leading to a ridiculous-seeming ‘zoo’ of particles that all seemed fundamental (though all except the previously-known proton are unstable).
And of Murray Gell-Mann and Zweig brought order to the confusion by postulating that there were in fact three types (called “flavors”) of quarks (and three matching types of anti-quarks) that made up all of these these particles…including the proton and neutron. A quark and anti-quark pair (usually of a different flavor) made up a meson (medium weight particle), and three quarks made up a baryon (heavy weight particle).
The three flavors are “up” (+2/3 electric charge), “down” (-1/3 electric charge) and “strange (-1/3 electric charge).
And then the idea that there was a new fundamental kind of charge, different from electric charge, called the color charge. Where the electric charge comes in positive and negative forms, the color charge has three forms, none of them quite the opposite of any of the others, but all three of them adding up to “neutral.” This reminded someone of the primary colors red, green, and blue [primary when dealing with light emitting sources, not paints, where it’s the red, blue and yellow you’re probably thinking of] and so the three charges were named red, green and blue.
It turns out that this is the real “strong force” and the “strong nuclear force” noted in the past, that holds protons and neutrons together in the nucleus is just a side effect of it. No, the real strong force holds the protons and neutrons themselves together!
Strong interactions within a proton or neutron generate a pion (a meson), which will decay almost instantly unless it runs into another proton or neutron immediately, in which case it interacts with that particle; that interaction is the “strong nuclear force.” That other proton or neutron has to be practically touching the first one for this to work at all, so that’s why the strong nuclear force had such a short range.
And these are particles a trillionth of a millimeter across, roughly, so when I say “short range” I mean “short range.”
The real strong force operating by quarks exchanging “gluons,” much like the electromagnetic force operates by charged particles exchanging photons. But it is much, much more complicated than that. A photon, once emitted, has no electric charge and no mass, so even though it carries the electromagnetic force, it’s not affected by it. It won’t be bent by electric or magnetic fields. It won’t be affected by other photons. But a gluon itself has a color charge and a mass! That means it can interact with quarks and other gluons, by exchanging yet more gluons…which can exchange yet more gluons. This was a seemingly-intractable mess that, frankly, I don’t understand the resolution to. But they did resolve it. (Richard Feynman had a lot to do with that.)
So there was this totally new and much deeper understanding of the strong force (no longer the strong “nuclear” force). The whole topic is now called “quantum chromodynamics” to match with “quantum electrodynamics” (the completely up-to-date marriage of quantum physics and Maxwell’s and Einstein’s work).
[As an aside, every experiment made to test quantum electrodynamics has been a perfect match, down to ten parts in a billion of precision. Nothing else in physics is this solid.]
Later on, physicists discovered three more quarks, the charm quark (+2/3 charge), bottom quark (-1/3 charge), and top quark (+2/3 charge) and they got grouped into three “generations: Generation 1 is the up and down quarks, and those make up protons and neutrons and thus the overwhelming majority of everything you see around you by mass (the rest of the mass is electrons; and of course you see photons; in fact you see with photons). Generation 2 is the charmed and strange quarks, while Generation 3 are the top and bottom quarks.
But what about the weak force?
The weak force, it turns out is the only force that can change a quark’s flavor, from say, down to up.
Consider a neutron, out all by its lonesome. It contains an up quark (+2/3 electric charge) and two down quarks (-1/3 each electric charge). Each of those quarks is a different color charge, but it actually doesn’t matter which one is which.
The weak force operates here by changing one of the down quarks to an up quark. That raises the charge of that quark an entire unit, from -1/3 to +2/3, which means that some particle with a negative charge unit has to be generated to make up for it (electric charge is (still) always conserved). Well, now, an electron fills the bill nicely. But if you generate an electron, you’ve created a lepton, and an anti-lepton must be generated to make up for that. (The total number of leptons can never change, but anti-leptons count as –1 lepton.) And an anti-neutrino fills that bill, since neutrinos are leptons and anti-neutrinos are therefore anti-leptons.
I’ve just described negative beta decay.
(If you get the feeling, after watching all that book-balancing going on, that physics is a lot like accounting, well, yes, yes it is! Except you’re keeping books in six different currencies at once, between conserving quark number, lepton number, electric charge, angular momentum, linear momentum and occasionally mass-energy.)
And indeed the result is a proton, and electron, and an anti-neutrino.
Logically, there should be particles that mediate this force too, and indeed predictions were made in 1968. This had come about because, fresh off the success of quantum electrodynamics, physicists had turned to trying to “crack” the weak force, and Sheldon Glashow (1932 and still alive), Stephen Weinberg (1933-July 23 2021), and Abdus Salam (1926-1996) put forward a prediction that not only related the weak force to electromagnetism, but suggested three new particles. The first two were the W+ and W– “bosons” (bosons are particles with integer spin, force carrying particles are all bosons), named W for the weak force, and they have + and – 1 unit of electric charge, respectively. The third particle is the Z boson, which has no charge at all (and Z for Zero).
These particles were found in 1973.
Beta Decay, the Modern Understanding
So what really happens in a beta decay? One of the down quarks in a neutron emits a W- boson. That alone turns the down quark to an up quark, and that quark’s involvement is over. About 10-25 seconds later (enough time for the W particle to move about 3 percent of the width of the neutron it’s inside), the W particle breaks down into the electron (which carries off all the charge) and antineutrino. That avoids having three things happen at once.
Below is a Feynman Diagram of the interaction. Starting at the lower left, the neutron, consisting of one up and two down quarks is moving (in space) slightly to the right, but is climbing along the time axis. Then one of the down quarks spits out the W– particles, and the neutron turns into a proton, which recoils…exactly like a rifle firing a bullet. Exit shiny new proton, stage upper left. The W boson moves off then becomes an anti-neutrino (with that Greek “nu” ν that looks like a v to us for a symbol, the bar over it denotes it’s an antiparticle, as does the arrow pointing backwards in time), and an electron.
Feynman diagrams are actually enormously powerful visualization tools (and helped solve the mess with gluon-gluon interactions) and I really should have found some excuse to introduce them sooner. Actually, I’m being charitable: I feel like an idiot for not using them sooner.
I just dropped a tiny spoiler (soon to be resolved) in that diagram; notice the antineutrino is subscripted with an e, νe.
Another place where the weak force comes into play is the decays of muons and tauons. Recall that these are basically bigger “cousins” of the electron, and indeed these particles decay, ultimately, into electrons. These are all leptons.
Let’s look at the muon decay, in another Feynman diagram.
Here the muon (μ–), in many ways just a bloated electron, enters at stage lower left, decides it’s bored with being a muon, and decides to become a neutrino (with zero charge). So it upchucks a W– to get rid of the charge. [Sorry about the imagery, but recent events in my life suggested it to me.] Everything is kosher to the guys with the green eyeshades, because there’s one lepton going in and one going out (neutrinos are leptons). But that W– lives only about ten times as long as a politician’s promise not to violate your rights, and breaks down into an antineutrino and an electron. The electron bears the charge of the W– particle, the anti-neutrino balances the lepton number of the electron.
So what’s the deal here? That neutrino that the muon turned into has a cute little μ subscript (νμ) and the antineutrino from the W– breakdown has an e subscript (νe, though unfortunately I can’t draw the bar over it in this text editor).
As it turns out the charged leptons come in three generations, electron, muon, and tauon…and so do the neutrinos!
As if the dang neutrino isn’t a slippery enough little bugger, now there’s three kinds of them?
In fact there seem to be three generations of everything: leptons, quarks, and subdividing, three generations of neutrinos, “electron-ish” leptons, -1/3 quarks and +2/3 quarks.
The Sun is Safe, and You Still Have To Do Your Taxes (Dammit).
And this helped to solve a mystery that was beginning to bother people. Really bother them.
Nuclear fusion should generate neutrinos. We can check this because there is a big fusion reactor less than a hundred million miles away: the Sun. Based on the energy output of the sun, and the amount of energy each fusion reaction generates (measured in a laboratory), we can know how many reactions are taking place each second; we can use simple geometry to figure out how many neutrinos should pass through detectors here on Earth. And we can do further calculations to figure out the tiny number of neutrinos that should actually react with the detector and therefore be detected rather than just cruising on through to go on, probably, forever.
The problem was, we only detected a third as many neutrinos as we thought. Either we just didn’t understand something…or the Sun was shutting down for some reason. Which would be bad. We’d only find out ten thousand years or so after it happened, because it takes that long for the heat and light generated by the fusion to work its way out (the neutrinos zip out instantly since all the matter of the sun is nothing to them). When, suddenly, no more light and heat…we’re up shit creek.
It turns out that neutrinos can change generation. This suggestion was made clear back in 1957 by Bruno Pontecorvo (1913-1993) and eventually was confirmed by experiments done at neutrino detectors. It takes some time for neutrinos to do this, which is why the effect was visible in solar neutrinos (which are 8 minutes, 20 seconds old) but not in neutrinos generated by nuclear reactors here on earth (which are less than a millionth of a second old). One implication of this is that neutrinos do have a mass, albeit one we still can’t measure (much, much less than an electron, which is the lightest thing we know of that isn’t zero mass). The details are still being worked out.
The last bit of fallout from the work done in 1968 was the Higgs boson. It turns out to be the particle representing a field that gives particles mass. So electrons, muons, tauons and quarks interact with it (as do the W, Z, and gluon), but photons do not. [At least one theory of neutrino mass claims it gets its mass from something other than the Higgs field.]
That particle was finally found in 2012 at the Large Hadron Collider. And if you’ve wondered why on earth it’s the Large Hadron Collider, recall that a hadron is any particle made of quarks including both mesons and baryons.
[And yes, it must be told. Richard Dawkins (yes, that Richard Dawkins) mentioned the LHC in a book he wrote before the Higgs was finally discovered, and he got the proofs back from the publisher. And sure enough someone had flubbed and in print was “Large Hardon Collider.” He has quite a good sense of humor, actually, and he begged the publisher to leave the misprint in, but they removed it. (There is, or at least was, on his website a troll named “Rawhard Dickins” that he tolerated.) It was only a couple of years later that “the typo we’ve all been waiting for” finally appeared on a website.]
The Standard Model…Ta Da!!
So that completes what is actually named “the standard model” of particle physics. It pretty much sums up everything we’ve every seen in a collider.
Here’s a graphic. This one includes the anti-particles in columns 4-6. (Most such diagrams do not; it’s assumed you know they’re there.)
[Sorry, Zoe, I don’t know a quick way to describe this one, and listing what’s in each cell in a 8×4 grid would be tedious.]
One thing sometimes included in the diagram, but not this diagram, is the “graviton,” the force carrying particle for the gravitational force. But, we really can’t even hazard much of a guess as to what such a particle would be like, because we’d need a quantum theory of gravity.
We don’t have one. Personally I’m not even sure there can be one, but really, I am WAY beyond my pay grade here.
There are a couple of other details that still need to be worked out (neutrino mass would result in a tweak to the theory, not its breakage), but again, it seems like everything we’ve ever seen in a particle collider or a lab of any type fits into this, with the nagging exception of gravity–we just have to figure out how to bolt that onto the schema.
So is physics done?
Not even close.
Because we have excellent reason to believe that this diagram only categorizes one sixth of the matter in the universe.
Wait, since this explains everything we do see…that would mean we only see one sixth of the matter in the universe!
And if we can’t see it, how do we even know it exists?
What’s up with that?
Back to the astronomers…
Fuck Joe Biden
No expansion on this thought necessary.
Obligatory PSAs and Reminders
China is Lower than Whale Shit
Remember Hong Kong!!!
Zhōngguò shì gè hùndàn !!!
China is asshoe !!!
China is in the White House
Since Wednesday, January 20 at Noon EST, the bought-and-paid for His Fraudulency Joseph Biden has been in the White House. It’s as good as having China in the Oval Office.
Joe Biden is Asshoe
China is in the White House, because Joe Biden is in the White House, and Joe Biden is identically equal to China. China is Asshoe. Therefore, Joe Biden is Asshoe.
But of course the much more important thing to realize:
Joe Biden Didn’t Win
Qiáo Bài dēng méi yíng !!!
Joe Biden didn’t win !!!