There is little doubt that Stephen Hawking is a smart guy, I mean he’s made several appearances in The Simpsons and is a cultural figure but recently his editorial pieces and interviews have been nothing more than link bait. Earlier this year Stephen Hawking warned that if we were to make contact with intelligent extra-terrestrial lifeforms that we could possibly be annihilated, much like how Native Americans where decimated by guns, germs, and steel as described by the book by Jared Diamond.
The Times Online has a few choice quotes.
We only have to look at ourselves to see how intelligent life might develop into something we wouldn’t want to meet. I imagine they might exist in massive ships, having used up all the resources from their home planet. Such advanced aliens would perhaps become nomads, looking to conquer and colonise whatever planets they can reach. … If aliens ever visit us, I think the outcome would be much as when Christopher Columbus first landed in America, which didn’t turn out very well for the Native Americans.
I didn’t know Stephen Hawking changed careers, from world renowned scientist to a two bit science fiction writer, but speculating on the event of first contact is not science. I am confident he said this just after watching Avatar.
Stephen Hawking latest link bait is his claim that God didn’t create the Universe. Again, he moved from science to scientific dogma. He claims that God is not necessary in the creation the Universe, that the Universe could have easily been created out of nothing. This really made me laugh, the idea that the Universe could have sprung out of nothingness is as fanciful as string theory. One of science’s major tenets, the conservation of energy, states that nothing can be created or destroyed out of nothing and now Stephen Hawking is claiming that the perhaps our universe and perhaps multiple universes sprung out of a void. This is scientific blasphemy!!!
The Wall Street Journal quote Stephen Hawking as saying the following.
As recent advances in cosmology suggest, the laws of gravity and quantum theory allow universes to appear spontaneously from nothing. Spontaneous creation is the reason there is something rather than nothing, why the universe exists, why we exist. … Our universe seems to be one of many, each with different laws.
If the term creationist wasn’t already taken, I would have to apply it to Stephen Hawking for the above statement. Calling a belief a theory does not make it science. I only have one life, I am not going to bet my life on the concept of multiple universes and definitely not counting on an alien armada invading Earth any time soon. Stephen Hawking should stick to what he knows best, black holes, and leave the alien invasion business to science fiction writers and government officials.