Neil deGrasse Tyson:

The concept of Rationalia began when Taylor Milsal insightfully mentioned at a cocktail reception of the Starmus Science Festival in Spain’s Canary Islands (July 2016) that, perhaps, a new virtual country should be created: “Rational Land”, containing member states that, by and large, embrace rational thinking in their conduct and policies.  This idea was prompted by how much irrational conduct currently drives world politics.

Goya warned us that
monsters rise when reason dreams.
Neil deGrasse Tyson,
with “the evidence”
brandished like a crucifix,
strides on, unafraid,
into that dark night.
Superstitions like the rest,
history’s ghosts are
banished with a snort
of contempt. Enlightenment’s
glow will permeate
all dark corners of
the mind, the heart, the halls of
power. Let it shine!
Oh, the irony,
the poor Cassandra critics,
their words unheeded.
It turned out that his
idea of reason is
rather circular.
The kind of proof he
wants to see is only found
in laboratories.
It’s almost as if
evidence is an inkblot
not a diagram.

As Tim Blanning explains, Goya almost certainly intended for his famous painting to be understood as “The Sleep of Reason Produces Monsters”. However, “sueño” can also mean “dream” in Spanish, which is how I chose to ironically use it here; i.e., the dream, or fantasy, of reason is of a world made perfect by human rationality. History, philosophy, and other “soft” sciences derided by rationalist ideologues like Tyson may not be capable of providing the standard of proof that would satisfy a physicist, but nonetheless, the historical record is about as clear as these things ever get — people acting on what they thought the “scientific evidence” clearly showed have committed horrific atrocities in the last couple of centuries. Tyson should be aware of this, given that he linked to several articles critical of his idea (though who knows if he read them closely). Apparently reasonable people can look at the same evidence and draw completely different conclusions about it. Who knew?

I think of this as a “haiku tower”. I did the entire thing in the standard haiku form of three lines of 5-7-5 syllables, though I obviously took liberties with it beyond that, especially by mashing it all together in one narrative. I just liked the way it broke up the meter without turning into free verse.