|photo: Washington Post|
With the vaccination debate spreading into the GOP presidential race, Hillary Rodham Clinton jumped into the fray by taking a swipe at some of her prospective Republican opponents.
“The science is clear: The earth is round, the sky is blue, and #vaccineswork,” Clinton wrote on Twitter. “Let’s protect all our kids. #GrandmothersKnowBest”
The science is clear, she says. Clear indeed. Hillary also likened the "science" of vaccines to the reality of the sky being blue. And yet, it is not always blue. Sometimes it is red.
Sometimes it is a majestic blazing orange.
Likewise for the earth. Believe it or not, our planet is not round. Via Scientific American:
Isaac Newton first proposed that Earth was not perfectly round. Instead, he suggested it was an oblate spheroid—a sphere that is squashed at its poles and swollen at the equator. He was correct and, because of this bulge, the distance from Earth's center to sea level is roughly 21 kilometers (13 miles) greater at the equator than at the poles.Thanks Hillary. The science really is clear. Do your own research people. Question everything, especially when it comes to your health. And even more especially when the government is involved.
Instead of Earth being like a spinning top made of steel, explains geologist Vic Baker at the University of Arizona in Tucson it has "a bit of plasticity that allows the shape to deform very slightly. The effect would be similar to spinning a bit of Silly Putty, though Earth's plasticity is much, much less than that of the silicone plastic clay so familiar to children."
Our globe, however, is not even a perfect oblate spheroid, because mass is distributed unevenly within the planet. The greater a concentration of mass is, the stronger its gravitational pull, "creating bumps around the globe," says geologist Joe Meert at the University of Florida in Gainesville.
Earth's shape also changes over time due to a menagerie of other dynamic factors. Mass shifts around inside the planet, altering those gravitational anomalies. Mountains and valleys emerge and disappear due to plate tectonics. Occasionally meteors crater the surface. And the gravitational pull of the moon and sun not only cause ocean and atmospheric tides but earth tides as well.