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It’s a pretty quiet week in the market with little expected on the economic and earnings front.However, there has been some news on the celestial and supernatural fronts that UBS’s Art Cashin notes this morning.
Cashin, who usually writes about market and economic events, dedicates a huge section of today’s Cashin’s Comments to prophecies and asteroids.
First, he writes about the Pope and St. Malachy:
First Nostradamus, Then The Mayans And Now Saint Malachy – The Pope’s announcement of his resignation from the Papacy has awakened new interests in the supposed Prophecies of St. Malachy. Malachy was born in Ireland around 1094 in, or around, Armagh, Ireland. He was canonized the first Irish saint by Pope Clement III in 1190 A.D.
Malachy was an Irish monk, who, on a visit to Rome was said to have had a vision of all the future popes. He catalogued each one with a descriptive Latin phrase and reportedly entrusted it to Pope Innocent II in 1140. There was little, if any, mention of the prophecies for the next 400 years.
In 1590, a Benedictine monk “discovered” them and published them five years later. The reason that Malachy’s prophecies have re-flourished is that proponents claim Malachy indicated that the current Pontiff, Benedict XVI is the “next to last pope”. Adherents say the next pope will be known as Peter the Roman and his reign will end in massive tribulation.
I guess folks need something to worry about now that we know that the Mayans miscalculated. Meanwhile, I’ll keep an eye on Friday’s asteroid.
And about that earth-ending asteroid:
Nothing To Worry About They Assure Us – Here’s a bit on the incoming asteroid by Ken Kremer in “Universe Today”:
Our home planet is due for a record setting space encounter on Friday (Feb. 15) of this week, when a space rock roughly half a football field wide skirts very close by Earth at break neck speed and well inside the plethora of hugely expensive communications and weather satellites that ring around us in geosynchronous orbit.
“There is no possibility of an Earth impact” by the Near Earth Asteroid (NEO) known as 2012 DA 14, said Don Yeomans, NASA’s foremost asteroid expert at a media briefing. Well that’s good news for us – but a little late for the dinosaurs.
At its closest approach in less than 4 days, the 45 meter (150 feet) wide Asteroid 2012 DA14 will zoom by within an altitude of 27,700 kilometers (17,200 miles). That is some 8000 km (5000 miles) inside the ring of geosynchronous satellites, but far above most Earth orbiting satellites, including the 6 person crew currently working aboard the International Space Station.
Although the likelihood of a satellite collision is extremely remote, NASA is actively working with satellite providers to inform them of the space rocks path.
The razor thin close shave takes place at about 2:24 p.m. EST (11:24 a.m. PST and 1924 UTC) as the asteroid passes swiftly by at a speed of about 7.8 kilometers per second (17,400 MPH)- or about 8 times the speed of a rifle bullet. For some perspective, it will be only about 1/13th of the distance to the moon at its closest.
“Asteroid 2012 DA14 will make a very close Earth approach, travelling rapidly from South to North and be moving at about two full moons per minute,” said Yeomans, who manages NASA’s Near-Earth Object Program Office at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, Calif. “That’s very fast for a celestial object.
No known asteroid has traveled this close to earth in recorded history. Let’s hope the slide rule guys have it nailed.
Assuming this asteroid does in fact miss us, it looks like it’ll continue to be a pretty quiet week.
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