The Corner

News From The World of Science

This one’s doing the rounds:

“A major research institution has recently announced the discovery of the

heaviest chemical element yet known to science. The new element has been

tentatively named ‘Governmentium.’ Governmentium has 1 neutron, 12 assistant

neutrons, 75 deputy neutrons, and 11 assistant deputy neutrons, giving it an

atomic mass of 312. These 312 particles are held together by forces called

morons, which are surrounded by vast quantities of lepton-like particles

called peons. Since governmentium has no electrons, it is inert. However, it

can be detected as it impedes every reaction with which it comes into

contact. A minute amount of governmentium causes one reaction to take over 4

days to complete when it would normally take less than a second.

“Governmentium has a normal half-life of 3 years; it does not decay, but

instead undergoes a reorganization in which a portion of the assistant

neutrons and deputy neutrons exchange places. In fact, governmentium’s mass

will actually increase over time, since each reorganization will cause some

morons to become neutrons, forming isodopes. This characteristic of

moron-promotion leads some scientists to speculate that governmentium is

formed whenever morons reach a certain quantity in concentration. This

hypothetical quantity is referred to as ‘Critical Morass.’ You will know it

when you see it.”

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