Tory cosmology

It's not Fred Hoyle who "got it spectacularly wrong", but you, by dismissing - in your brief, casual and gratuitous marking of the cosmologist's death (Seven Days, 27 August) - his espousal of the steady-state theory.

The big-bang theory of the origin of the universe is perverse, illogical and unscientific. But it appeals to those who grapple with the concept of infinity, breaking out in an intellectual sweat and profound feelings of failure. It also assuages those who, like Sir Bernard Lovell, can peer into the depths of space and still believe in the existence of a supernatural authority, who created it all and rules it, too. The "who made Him, then?" response doesn't seem to trouble such fabulists.

Come on New Statesman. The big-bang theory is for Tories. You should know that the socialists who have always been your constant supporters are, almost by definition, believers in the steady state.

Ian Breach
Sunderland, Tyne and Wear

This article first appeared in the 10 September 2001 issue of the New Statesman, The New Statesman Essay - The love of a robot