Petr Beckmann

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Petr Beckmann (1924-1993) was an electrical engineer, physicist, and major crank. He was a prolific technical writer, churning out a huge number of works on engineering, statistics, and nuclear power. He also wrote a history of the calculation of pi, appropriately titled A History of Pi.

He then defected to the US from Czechoslovakia in the 1960s and met Ayn Rand, soon becoming a total Randroid. When he wasn't doing his own scientific work, he was attempting to undo the work of others, most notably Albert Einstein. The Objectivists' disdain for modern physics seemed to have rubbed off on him and he became a "skeptic" of the Theory of Relativity. He set up his own vanity press to publish this work.[1] He called his alternative theory conjecture "Galilean Electrodynamics."[2] Other topics Beckmann wrote about at length in Rand's publications and on his own were libertarianism, the virtues of the free market, anti-environmentalism, and other various "problems" with modern physics. He started the newsletter Access to Energy to promote nuclear energy, which is now run by Arthur Robinson.

Doctors for Disaster Preparedness has an award named after him called the "Petr Beckmann Award for courage and achievement in defense of scientific crankery truth and freedom."

External links[edit]


  1. "Einstein Plus Two," one of his "debunkings" of Einstein, can be read here in full, if you're into that sort of thing.
  2. Galilean Electrodynamics online journal