The heaviest element in the periodic table

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, September 14, 2004

Editor, the News-Herald:

As I was considering the wonderful world of Suffolk City Government and why I and a few of my &uot;malcontent&uot; compatriots even bother to stand up and be counted, I was reminded of a public-domain writing I pulled off the Internet some time ago. I wish I could claim authorship, but the writer remains anonymous. Here it is:

&uot;Governmentium: The Heaviest

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Element Known to Man!

By Anonymous

Crosswalk | December 1, 2003

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 &uot;Governmentium.&uot;

Governmentium has one 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 more than four days to complete

when it would normally take less than a second.

Governmentium has a normal half-life of three 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 more 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 &uot;Critical Morass.&uot;

You will know it when you see it.&uot;

I wonder if anyone else in our city thinks we have any &uot;Governmentium&uot; in Suffolk.

C. L. Willis, P. E.