Latest and Historic Controversies

Live Controversy Center

Historic Controversy Of The Big Hawaiian Islands

The big island of Hawaii is larger than all other Hawaiian islands combined. It was actually the Kingdom of Hawaii before its citizens applied for statehood with the United States. This commentary traces the history of Hawaii, including the famous Hawaiian Splintered Paddle Law.

Some experts in history of Hawaii believe that it was named for the legendary Polynesian navigator Hawaiiloa, who was first to discover it. Other authorities on the history of Hawaii cite accounts, which attribute the name for the Kingdom of Hawaii, which later became the State of Hawaii, to a location from which Polynesians originated. Hawaiki, which is a Maori name, is the legendary realm or land to which they go in their afterlife. It is the realm of the gods.

But all specialists on the history of Hawaii agree that the Kingdom of Hawaii began under the rule of Kamehameha I, who was dubbed Kamehameha the Great. There is a fundamental disagreement in the historical accounts about the birth of Kamehameha.

Legends about the history of Hawaii claim that a great king will have united the Hawaiian Islands. The legend claims that a great comet would herald the birth of their king. It is a know fact that Halley’s comet was visible from the Hawaiian islands in 1758.

Many historians assume that Kamehameha must have been born a short time after the appearance of Halley’s comet. Other historical accounts say that he was actually born in November of 1737. So there is a debate about the precise year Kamehameha was born.

All accounts about the history of Hawaii agree that Kamehameha united the Hawaiian islands and became the Kingdom of Hawaii under him; and it came under his rule after many years of warfare and incursions. Kamehameha had an armada of about 1,200 war canoes and almost and 10,000 soldiers when he set sail from the big island of Hawaii to conquer all the islands in 1795.

Big Island of Hawaii

Kamehameha was able to unite the big island of Hawaii with all other Hawaiian islands into the Kingdom of Hawaii because he was in command of an overwhelming number of warriors along the island chain. Up until the point he surmounted the battle force, the Kingdom of Hawaii never had a population of 300,000.

Kamehameha quickly secured the islands of Maui and Molokai, which were only moderately defended. Then his troops moved from the big island of Hawaii on to Wai’alae and Waikiki on the island of Oahu.

Kamehameha defeated his archrival, Kaumualii by 1810. He emerged as the sovereign of the conquered Hawaiian islands chain; shortly thereafter formally established the big island of Hawaii as the seat of power over his newly established Kingdom of Hawaii.

Splintered Paddle

He developed alliances with major Pacific colonial powers and Kamehameha was thereby able to preserve the independence of the Hawaiian islands under his rule. Kamehameha is noted for enacting Mamalahoe Kanawai, which is literally the Law of the Splintered Paddle.

Kamehameha devised the Law of the Splintered Paddle long before Hawaii was unified as the Kingdom of Hawaii. One of the two local fishermen, who were afraid of the great warrior, actually broke a large wooden paddle over the head of Kamehameha during a raid after his foot became stuck in a rock.

The force of the blow stunned Kamehameha and the fishermen left him, believing their attack had been deadly. The same fishermen were brought before Kamehameha twelve years later and they expected to receive sever punishment for it. They were stunned, however, when Kamehameha set them free.

But Kamehameha did more than simple give the fishermen their freedom; he also gave them gifts of land on the big island of Hawaii. King Kamehameha had blamed himself for his own attacks on innocent people. He therefore declared the Law of the Splintered Paddle, “Let every elderly person, woman and child lie by the roadside in safety”.

The Mamalahoe Kanawai law provides for human rights and safety of noncombatants in time of war. This law may have saved thousands of lives during the campaigns of Kamehameha. The Law of the Splintered Paddle became the first law written for the Kingdom of Hawaii. Splintered Paddle Law is still a part of the State Constitution of Hawaii today.

Kamehameha had his first dealings with white men when Captain James Cook made a voyage to Hawaii in 1779. Cook made landfall by the Kealakekua Bay after he sailed around the Archipelago Sea for about eight weeks. The Kealakekua Bay is located in the island that is known as the ‘Big Island’ of Hawaii.

Historians believe Cook may have been mistaken, by some of the Native Hawaiians, to be the Hawaiian god of fertility, Lono. Cook’s traveled to Hawaii on Her Majesty’s Ship Discovery; and it is believed that Kamehameha spent at least one night on board her.

Kamehameha died in 1819 and his body was secreted away by a trusted friend, Hoapili. The final resting place of Kamehameha remains unknown to this day. United States Capitol Building in Washington DC has a statue of Kamehameha in the National Statuary Hall, which represents Hawaii.

The Kingdom of Hawaii, which Kamehameha established, in fact retained independence (with the minor exception of a five-month occupation by the British 1843) up until the United States annexed Hawaii in 1898. The legacy of Kamehameha earned him the epithet of “Napoleon of the Pacific.”

September 30, 2008 Posted by | Historic Controversies | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Controversy Of The Crop Circles In England

Crop Circles of England

Crop Circles of EnglandThe crop circles first appeared in England. They are areas in a field of corn or wheat that is flattened in an artistic fashion. Usually the pattern contains circles of various sizes. People began to credit spacecraft aliens for the creation of these patterns. The media just loved this one. They still show newly created crop circles and leave the viewer with the notion that they could have been produced by aliens.

Claims are made that the area of the flattened crop gives off an electromagnetic radiation that is unnatural. The claim is made that this same radiation has been detected at the location of UFO sightings. The area is damaged to the extent that the pattern shows even after several plowings. Others claim the crops show evidence of strange mutations in the downed plants.

All of the weird claims made about crop circles are untrue. The circles are exactly the same as circles made by people using a rope to control the radius and a board to flatten the crop. The wild claims made that connect crop circles with UFOs are simply lies.

People who continue the serious study of crop circles refer to themselves as cerealogists (after Ceres, the Roman goddess of agriculture and fertility). Others use a simple slang term, croppies.

Doug Bower and David Chorley were farmers who, in 1991, confessed to making approximately 250 of the patterns, but this hasn’t stopped people from believing they came from aliens. This stuff is nutty, folks.

September 27, 2008 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Bermuda Triangle and UFO Controversy

Bermuda Triangle and UFOThe Bermuda Triangle is a section of ocean formed by drawing lines between Miami, Florida, Bermuda Island and Puerto Rico. The area is famous because of the loss of military Flight 19 on December 5, 1945. Five planes simply vanished without a trace. Click on the image to see an enlargement.

The location is also known for its many shipwrecks. This is a great area to search for the sunken wreckage of an old world vessel that was known for carrying large quantities of gold and other precious cargos.

It is true that many aircraft and ships have vanished in the area. Many speculate that the losses were not caused by natural phenomena. UFOs are claimed to have been responsible for many of the losses. One such story tells of the US nuclear aircraft carrier, USS John F. Kennedy, being stopped in the triangle by a UFO in 1971. The spacecraft is said to have blocked all communication on the aircraft carrier and was hovering overhead.

“During this time you cannot tell where the sea and sky meet. This is the time of evening it was. As we looked up, we saw a large, glowing sphere. Well it seemed large, however, there was no point of reference. That is to say, if the sphere were low; say 100 feet above the ship, then it would have been about two to three hundred feet in diameter. If it were say 500 feet about the ship then it would have been larger. It made no sound that I could hear. The light coming from it wasn’t too bright, about half of what the sun would be. It sort of pulsated a little and was yellow to orange.

We didn’t get to looked at it for more than about 20 seconds because General Quarters (Battle stations) was sounding and the Communication Officer was in the passageway telling us to get back into the Comm Center.”

Notice to all military personnel. If this ever happens again, BLOW THE UFO AWAY. Don’t be so cowardly.

This is all very interesting. But seriously, would you say, “Yes, sir,” upon being asked to go back below the deck while you were viewing an alien spacecraft hovering overhead? Certainly not. If such an event were true, it would be the one time that all orders would certainly be disobeyed. We are led to believe that 4,999 other personnel on the ship obeyed orders to keep the UFO incident secret, but this guy spilled his guts. This personal testimony is pure nonsense and a great example why personal testimonies are worthless.

The Bermuda Triangle does have a high number of airplane and ship accidents. The area has a lot of traffic. The relatively calm climate, warm weather and beautiful beaches lead people to the area. This wonderful weather can suddenly turn to the worst weather on the planet because this is also known as hurricane alley. Modern satellite photos allow us to see the coming disaster, but this was not the case in the recent past. The area can also have flash squalls and rogue waves that catch airplane pilots and ship captains off guard. Methane gas pockets under the ocean floor are another threat. A methane eruption causes methane bubbles in the ocean that reduce the effective density. A ship surrounded with these bubbles will sink like a rock in seconds without a trace.

September 26, 2008 Posted by | Bermuda Triangle, Historic Controversies, Science, UFO Controversies | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Five Best Controversies in Physics Science

The major five problems of physics, the solution of any one of which shall largely, to a great extent affect the lives of one and all. Also, the author’s own viewpoint on them is provided. In this article the first three shall be discussed, and the last two shall be dealt with separately as they require a higher degree of knowledge of Physics.
The five major controversies in the field of physics, as the author sees them, are:

Validity of Theory of Relativity

Formation and Evolution of Galaxies

Existence of Life elsewhere

Presence of higher dimensions, which leads to The Holy Grail of Physics, the Grand Unification of All Forces

Validity of the Theory of Relativity:

The General Theory of Relativity has withstood all the experiments and tests meted out to it so far. However, still, the possibility of it failing at some level, is not out. The General Theory of Relativity yields accurate results even at the galactic level, however, it is to be seen whether it holds true at the threshold of time itself, a black hole. Moreover, there is a hypothesis known as the Dirac’s Large Number Hypothesis that states that the Gravitational Constant may itself vary with time. If that is true, then The Theory of General Relativity can be proved wrong. Though this hypothesis has not been proved as yet, it may be proved some day in the future.

Though general relativity has withstood the tests of time so far and is unrivaled, it is to be remembered that it is the theories without effective rivals that need the most vigilant testing.

Formation of Galaxies:

The exact model of the formation of galaxies has not yet been completely understood, it is still under much speculation. With recent evidence of the presence of super massive black holes at the center of galaxies, a very likely model is that the formation of galaxies is related to the formation of the black hole at the galactic center.

A few scientists believe that the formation of a black hole might have triggered the formation of a galaxy.

Existence of life elsewhere:

This question, whether life exists elsewhere or not, is gaining popularity. There are many who are quite optimistic of the idea whereas a few others don’t quite encourage this thought. The author falls into the former category. It shall be too egoistic to imagine we are the sole life-form in this vast universe. However, only time will tell.

September 25, 2008 Posted by | Education Controversies, Historic Controversies, Science | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Famous Gavaskar-Border-Ponting Controversy

The row between Cricket Batting legends Sunil Gavaskar and Allan Border was a show of pent up anger dating back from the Bedi vs Bob Simpson series in 1979 which India almost won despite unfavourable (read highly biased) umpiring by Australians:

1. Gavaskar – Quoting David Hookes incident:

This is perhaps the only incorrect reference/ remark in the whole episode.

David Hookes or anyone else, the quote was out of context and Gavaskar lost track of his argument from here, allowing the Aussies to defend themselves. Thumbs Down.

2. Ponting defending sledging by referring to it as a cultural difference:

Sure there are cultural differences and India and West Indies are at one end of the cultural spectrum and Australia and England the other end (England has lately moved to the centre of the spectrum). This end of the spectrum is red (blood), and they sure play the game hard, and would resort to any style to win – in fact winning is everything. Remember how Bob Simpson was never given out in 1977-78 series led by Bishan Singh Bedi where the Aussies could not stand up to the Indian Spinners so only their partisan umpiring saved the day for them. I don’t know how many remember the Trevor Chappell underhand delivery? New Zealanders surely do – and would never forget that. Or more recently Ponting sledging the minnow nations play – well he should go to the football world cup and take a stand there first. Similarly, England resorted to Bodyline, Vaseline (John Lever in India) and even through racial means which they abandoned later (discrimination at MCC, etc). At the West Indian and Indian end of the cultural spectrum (which is white as in peace) we’ve always known that the game has to be played fairly and even tampering the psychology of the opponent is not fair. Now this is another matter whether tampering with the psychology is fair or not, but it is a part of the game tactics. Thumbs Down.

3. Ponting – on Gavaskar Chauhan walkout:

Well that incident is a blot on Gavaskar’s otherwise spotless career (besides the Kapil Dev drop in Calcutta). Still, let us understand, they didn’t resort to sledging and their decision was hurting none other than their own team and Chauhan in particular (he lost what was in hindsight was probably his last opportunity to score a test 100). It is still much better than Aussies tricking to keep out Murali through various unfair means. It is a well know fact that only the actions of cricketers from the sub-continent have been found incorrect. Ricky Ponting, what do you say to that? Thumbs Down.

4. Ponting – on Adam Gilchrist walk out without being given out:Cosidering that Ricky Ponting did not take it lightly, and did not like Adam Gilchrist’s walk says a lot about how Aussies play their cricket – i.e. not in the best of sportsman spirit. Thumbs Down. The bottomline is that some teams want a fair results, and some teams want to just win. And recently since they have been winning, they have not been found to be a Champion, they’re just winners. West Indies were Champions. Champions are winners whatever the results. Thumbs up.

5. Border – on how Gavaskar played his cricket:

Well Gavaskar surely played it better than Border who just kept on and on till he could cross Gavaskar in the number of runs he scored – and at what average? If Border wants to refer to Gavaskar’s ODI career, well, that is about India taking time to adapt to the new style of playing cricket and Gavaskar’s 36 runs in the world cup, was the bottom. Thereafter Gavaskar adapted well and had a score of good performances. Finally it is a fact that India and West Indies took the cup much before Australia could stand up and be counted. Even Sri Lanka took it before them. Thumbs Down.

6. Border – Quoting David Hookes incident:

This is perhaps the only incorrect reference/ remark in the whole episode.

David Hookes or anyone else, the quote was out of context and Gavaskar lost track of his argument from here, allowing the Aussies to defend themselves. Thumbs Down.

7. Darren Lehmann – joining the controversy:

Darren who? Well, what is the need of Darren now to get into the controversy? Thumbs Down.

September 24, 2008 Posted by | Cricket Controversy, Historic Controversies, Sports Controversy | , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment