[ExI] SETI reviews the Drake equation

Stuart LaForge avant at sollegro.com
Sat Feb 2 20:30:59 UTC 2019

At the risk of being like Spike (there are worse fates actually) and  
quoting myself:

> Incidentally, the sheer improbability that the super-massive black
> hole (SMBH) in the center of the galaxy has its rotational axis and
> radio jet pointed directly at us while we are in the plane of the
> galactic disk is such that if this result is true, then this is the
> best evidence yet for the Simulation Argument. It's as if you are
> looking off your balcony with a telescope in New York City and see a
> cannon on a remote rooftop pointed directly at you. It is disturbing
> even if the [cannon] is unloaded at the time.

Upon further reflection, this crazy coincidence might explain two big  
mysteries in science at once: the Great Silence and the Asymmetric  
Chirality of Biological Molecules. Allow me to explain. Our attempts  
on earth of recreating abiogenesis in the laboratory are usually  
hindered by the fact that all physical processes that we have  
replicated thus far in the lab create racemic mixtures of whatever  
biomolecules we are synthesizing be they sugars, amino acids, whatever.

In laymen's terms that means we can find all kinds of chemical  
reactions to generate molecules important for life but we inevitably  
also create molecules that are the mirror image of the first molecule  
with a roughly 50% mixture of the two forms. And it costs us a lot of  
energy to sort them out.

Yet when we examine living organisms, whether they be humans or the  
lowliest bacterium, their biomolecules are always just one of the  
mirror images and not both. For example all glucose recovered from  
living cells has left-handed chirality and all amino acids from cells  
are right-handed.

So the source of this uniformly asymmetric chirality of life has  
stumped biologists since Pasteur.

There is however one known physical process that can be used to  
generate asymmetric quantities of chiral molecules and that is to  
shoot unsaturated precursor molecules with circularly-polarized lasers  
of the correct frequency, usually UV. Since circularly polarized laser  
light is generally not commonly found in nature, ergo the mystery.

And this is where Sgr A*, the 4 million solar-mass black hole at the  
center of our galaxy comes into play: At some point in our galaxy's  
evolution, two black holes collided in the center of our galaxy, in  
such a way that by complete random chance the resultant super-massive  
black hole (SMBH) Sgr A* was tilted on it's side like the planet  
Uranus, precessing like a gyroscope with its radio-jet, which is  
essentially a gigantic circularly-polarized broad-spectrum laser/maser  
in just such a fashion to track our sun's orbit around the disk.

In other words, the monster black hole in the center of our galaxy  
catalyzed abiogenesis on earth and almost nowhere else. Other galaxies  
don't have life because it is so rare for a SMBH to be tilted on its  
side relative its galactic disk. Perhaps Sgr's occasional quasar  
flare-ups cause cycles of mass extinctions followed by rapid mutation  
and adaptive radiation i.e. punctuated equilibrium as demonstrated in  
the fossil record on planet earth. Planet earth therefore being the  
cradle of life in our causal cell due to the unlikely astrophysics of  
a tilted SMBH and the anthropic principle.

> And if we do live in a simulation, then an interstellar civilization
> would probably be far more entertaining to any Simulators than a
> sedentary one.

Actually I like my secular explanation better. I still don't think  
humanity would fare well if we are still here when SgrA* next goes  
quasar. On the other hand, if we can colonize systems outside of the  
quasar beam path, then we would have a pristine galaxy all to  
ourselves for quite some time. We could be the seed crystals for a  
galaxy-wide phase change or we could be another failed natural  
experiment. The choice might be ours to make.

> There is no such thing as unlimited resources, which means you have to
> constantly move around, exploring, and hunting for new resources.

Still good advice, even if we are living in the base reality.  
Especially if we are in the path of a quasar beam.

Stuart LaForge

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