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Calling all clowns

The Creation Science Hall of Fame needs help. They’re trying to fabricate a parody of peer review by recruiting fellow kooks to settle some “controversies” in the creationist community.

Dear Creationists,

The Creation Science Hall of Fame is sponsoring a Peer Review Panel and is now asking for volunteers.

For a number of years there has been much dispute over the 3 main Flood Theories:
Hydro Plate, Canopy and Plate Tectonics….etc.

The Creation Science Hall of Fame is now forming a Peer Review Panel to evaluate all three theories and decide which one is the most feasible….or perhaps a mixture of all three being the most accurate…don’t know yet, so please volunteer.

We need about 7 to 9 professional people who are well credentialed to participate in a non-bias Peer Review Panel.

Dr. Hurlbut will be the Secretary of this project as well as representing the Creation Science Hall of Fame. His email address is: <email removed>
I asking Pam Elder, our Hebrew Scholar for the CSHF, to be on this panel.

Please get back to Dr. Hurlbut and copy Nick Lally at [email protected] and please forward this email to potential volunteers.

In Christ serving the Creationist Community,
Nick Lally Chairman, Board of Directors, Creation Science Hall of Fame

Cc: Directors, Creation Science Hall of Fame

So, they’re going to get a bunch of bozos to sit around and argue ungrammatically over email which bit of nonsense is the “most accurate” — I would love to get my hands on those exchanges. Watching fools batter each other with Bible quotes has got to be hilarious.

Comments

  1. The Apostate says

    I find myself wondering if they’re setting up a peer-review process to try to “prove” that they’re being scientific.

  2. rogerfirth says

    This is like one of the many “free energy” conferences where bozos discuss whose perpetual motion machine is the best.

    Verbal masturbation.

  3. Lofty says

    Dear Mr Ham,
    Perhaps you could also include a 4th flud theory, the null hypotheis:
    It didn’t happen.
    That might fit the evidence better.

  4. unbound says

    Maybe they’ll figure out which planet all these UFOs come from as well. And which alien race is creating those crop circles.

    The possibilities are endless for the CPRT (Clown Peer Review Team).

  5. marcoli says

    This is excellent news with my morning coffee. With peer review their ‘science’ will be ‘self correcting’. They will be gradually discarded one by one. Right? Right?

  6. fenris says

    Maybe when this is done, they can set up a conference with dock workers, UPS loaders and such to debate how the ark must’ve been loaded.
    “You gotta have your small critters on da bottom cuz it was the little things what suffered da most”
    “Y’all are crazy! The meek shall inherit the earth so the bunny rabbits gotta be near the doors so theys kin git out first”

    Cause, y’know….science!

  7. grumpyoldfart says

    PR campaign. Future CS publications will be advertised as “peer reviewed”.

  8. blf says

    3 main Flood Theories: Hydro Plate, Canopy and Plate Tectonics

    I fink I sortof vaguely recall the “canopy” flud pulled-from-arse-guess (for feck’s sake, even using “hypothesis” instead of “theory” here is not even wrong), but the other two — in whatever sense is meant — has me baffled…

    (As I recall, the “canopy” flud pfag says there was a great dome of water covering the Earth which sprung a leak. I’ve no idea what happened to water, why all life wasn’t boiled to death, or how the sun shined through the dome.)

  9. timothybrannan says

    It’s gotta be like watching my youngest son and his friends argue over the subtleties of Minecraft.
    At least Minecraft though is a real thing.

  10. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Gee, gotta love how their doing science in name of something that doesn’t exist.

  11. blf says

    Watching fools batter each other with Bible quotes has got to be hilarious.

    Toss in a few from the Quran for extra hilarity. Or, probably, from the earliest available scrolls (i.e., not in English…).

  12. Ogvorbis: ArkRanger of Doom! says

    Well, at the very least, we can find out how many pinheads can dance the head of a failed hypotheosis, right?

  13. Sastra says

    For a number of years there has been much dispute over the 3 main Flood Theories:
    Hydro Plate, Canopy and Plate Tectonics….etc. The Creation Science Hall of Fame is now forming a Peer Review Panel to evaluate all three theories and decide which one is the most feasible….or perhaps a mixture of all three being the most accurate…don’t know yet, so please volunteer.

    I can guess where this will go. It will eventually go to the same place that the different ‘theories’ on the One True Cause of All Disease goes to in so-called alternative medicine: “no right, no wrong, just different.” All sickness is the result of toxins/liver flukes/chi blockage/bad thoughts. Take your pick. Whichever theory you choose is fine as long as you’re standing on the right side: the “experts” are wrong because they don’t pay proper homage to our spiritual truths and ways of knowing those truths.

    Conferences like this is what happens when cranks manage to fool themselves into thinking they’re doing real science and not some cargo-cult representation. They’ll discover soon enough that it’s not going to work. Reality isn’t like metaphysics, where you can just assert something sincerely and establish credibility because nobody — even you — would be able to tell if you were wrong. Your arguments have to persuade people who don’t already agree with you — not just those who do. That’s a much higher standard than they’re used to.

    Watch. This duel between contending views will turn into a standoff … and the focus will be switched from “which one of us is right?” to “look, at least we’re sure it’s not evolution.” Consensus reached: God has no peers. Successful peer review panel.

  14. Ogvorbis: ArkRanger of Doom! says

    The ArkRanger of Doom! should clearly be on the panel…

    Only if you will eat, in one sitting, 1 can of peas, 1 kilogramme of British Industrial Cheddar, and 1 pound of American-style processed cheese food product. Deal?

  15. kemist, Dark Lord of the Sith says

    It wouldn’t surprise me to one day see them make pseudo measure instruments to mimic real lab work.

    They’re sure that if they keep at it the cargo will surely come.

  16. wholething says

    They should do a peer-reviewed study on which of The Three Stooges was the smartest.

  17. says

    @blf, #10

    I was raised on this stuff. (Insert smiley face or sobby face here, your choice.)

    The canopy trapped the heat and kept the earth warm.
    All critters could live anywhere on the warm earth.
    There were no polar bears. All of them evolved from the two teddy bears that were on the arc.
    It had never rained before the flood.
    The water is currently in the Pacific ocean. Some is in the Atlantic ocean.
    People have gone so far as to work out how thick the canopy would need to be to fill the Pacific ocean, how thick the canopy would need to be to trap heat on the warm earth, and how thick the canopy would need to be to deflect the hot sunlight. Problem is they can’t get to the thickness that fits all three requirements.

    The obvious problem is that they are starting from a solution and attempting to figure out the least unlikely set of events that would lead to the solution. Consider the possibility that the Bible is not inerrant and the whole thing tumbles down. As all it takes is to read a parallel gospel to convince yourself the Bible not inerrant, you can see that a non-biased creationist peer review panel is an oxymoron. The fact that they are including a Hebrew scholar on the panel is telling. If she says the “firmament” was a water canopy, they go with that.

  18. blf says

    1 can of peas, 1 kilogramme of British Industrial Cheddar, and 1 pound of American-style processed cheese food product.

    This clearly requires a peer-review panel to decide which of those is the least qualified to be termed “edible”.

  19. Ogvorbis: ArkRanger of Doom! says

    blf:

    Hey, you want to put me in a position of intellectual masochism, I’d put you in a position of gustatory masochism.

  20. blf says

    ArkRanger: You’d have fun making there heads explode.
    My stomach strangling me to prevent further contamination isn’t nearly as much fun.

  21. Randomfactor says

    Future CS publications will be advertised as “peer reviewed”.

    “Peer” reviewed? Those guys should aim a little higher than their peers, I think.

  22. Doubting Thomas says

    So do you have to believe in Jebus to be a peer? Or can real scientists join?

  23. birgerjohansson says

    Since the Jewish flood myth is derived from the Mesopotamian flood myth you only need to work out how the Mesopotamian gods flooded the plain, a rather easy task sinc the whole place is on loam.
    The non-crazy fundies who think Abraham came from Ur might accept a flood limited to Mesopotamia, but their peers would probably reject them as apostates.

  24. Trebuchet says

    Heading right over to RationalWiki to see what they’ve got to say. Hurlbut (aka launchbooty, tossbottom, chuckarse etc. over there) is one of their very favorites. He’s a frequent poster to Conservapedia, mostly just spammng for his own blog. He LOVES him some hydroplate “theory”.

    http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Terry_Hurlbut

  25. Thumper; Atheist mate says

    We need about 7 to 9 professional people who are well credentialed to participate in a non-bias Peer Review Panel.

    PffffBWAhahaha! Non-biased! Hahaha!

  26. Thumper; Atheist mate says

    For a number of years there has been much dispute over the 3 main Flood Theories:
    Hydro Plate, Canopy and Plate Tectonics….etc. The Creation Science Hall of Fame is now forming a Peer Review Panel to evaluate all three theories…

    If they’re not peer-reviewed and confirmed then they’re “hypotheses”, you creationist morons, not “theories”. Stop conflating the two.

    *rageflail*

  27. yellowsubmarine says

    Hey! I have no degree to speak of! I should apply. Do you think they’d notice? How hard can it be to blow it out your ass for a living?

  28. quidam says

    Well Plate Tectonics is a real theory, although certainly not a ‘flood theory’. I was familiar with the other two which show a startling lack of understanding of energy states.

    But then I looked up plate tectonics and flood geology and round the “Catastrophic Plate Tectonics” hypothe-pullitfrommyass-is. Like ‘hydro-plate’ this has energy transformations that would have steamed the population of earth long before they could have drowned

    The hot mantle rock displaced by these subducting slabs wells up elsewhere to complete the flow cycle, and in particular rises into the seafloor rift zones to form new ocean floor. Reaching the surface of the ocean floor, this hot mantle material vaporizes huge volumes of ocean water with which it comes into contact to produce a linear curtain of supersonic steam jets along the entire 43,500 miles (70,000 km) of the seafloor rift zones stretching around the globe (perhaps the “fountains of the great deep” of Genesis 7:11 and Genesis 8:2). These supersonic steam jets capture large amounts of liquid water as they “shoot” up through the ocean above the seafloor where they form. This water is catapulted high above the earth and then falls back to the surface as intense global rain (“and the floodgates of heaven were opened”).

    “a linear curtain of supersonic steam jets along the entire 43,500 miles (70,000 km) of the seafloor rift zones stretching around the globe” – and they find evolution difficult to imagine!

    I wonder why Genesis didn’t bother to mention that Noah was boiled, pressure cooked and then had to share an ocean where North America cruised by at 35 knots.

    But hey, I’ll peer review it for them.

  29. Loqi says

    “Hilarious?” Perhaps the idea of it is amusing, but the actual implementation might be better described as “boring as fuck.”

  30. Thumper; Atheist mate says

    @quidam

    “a linear curtain of supersonic steam jets along the entire 43,500 miles (70,000 km) of the seafloor rift zones stretching around the globe”

    But subduction and seafloor spreading are happening now, and there are no jets of steam. Have they seriously not considered that inconvenient little fact? Also, subducted plates don’t displace mantle rock “causing it to well up elsewhere”, it’s convection cells which cause the plate to move in the first place. Bloody creationists.

    Also, serious question; is it even possible for steam to move at supersonic speeds?

  31. David Marjanović says

    They’re trying to fabricate a parody of peer review

    No.

    They’re not.

    They’re using the term peer review, but they have not the foggiest clue what it means. You can already see that from their word creation “peer review panel” – I’ve reviewed manuscripts, I’m on an editorial board, but I’ve never been on anything called a “panel”.

    What they’re proposing is an expert panel that writes a manuscript instead of reviewing it.

    It reminds me a lot of a good old medieval theological dispute as very briefly featured in The Name of the Rose (the movie – I haven’t read the book).

    hypotheosis

    Best typo of the week.

    I can guess where this will go. It will eventually go to the same place that the different ‘theories’ on the One True Cause of All Disease goes to in so-called alternative medicine: “no right, no wrong, just different.”

    Well, it might go the newage way as you describe.

    It might also go the good old-fashioned Christian way: the panel comes to an agreement, one of the “hypotheoses” (thanks again! :-) ) will solemnly be declared true and the others false, all the Disciples of Ham will immediately believe with all their strength and all their might in the true one, and if anyone disagrees, they’ll be declared heretic (Ham has, after all, recently used that word.)

    The difference to the 13th century is that there won’t be crusades against the heretics anymore. There’ll probably be a schism.

    So do you have to believe in Jebus to be a peer? Or can real scientists join?

    You have to believe in the whole Statement of Faith of Answers in Genesis. They’re assuming the Flood is true; they only want to decide which version of it is true.

  32. chigau (違う) says

    That flood stuff is easy when you understand that the Earth was flat.
    It got spherical afterwards.

  33. Draken says

    @kemist. #19: It wouldn’t surprise me to one day see them make pseudo measure instruments to mimic real lab work.

    You mean, like the E-meter?

  34. says

    Also, serious question; is it even possible for steam to move at supersonic speeds?

    Well, yeah. How could it be impossible?

    Happens in underwater explosions, certainly. Think nukes, for instance.

    Glen Davidson

  35. David Marjanović says

    If they’re not peer-reviewed and confirmed then they’re “hypotheses”, you creationist morons, not “theories”. Stop conflating the two.

    *rageflail*

    Calm down, then. The way I’m used to these terms, the difference between them is one of size: a theory explains lots and lots of seemingly unconnected observations and laws, a hypothesis is simply smaller.

    I suppose it sounds a little better than asking whether Jesus or Baal would win in a cage fight, or if Jesus’ miracles stack up to Superman’s powers.

    Just a bit.

    Exactly.

    (Incidentally, Superman actually is omnibenevolent as far as I know.)

    But subduction and seafloor spreading are happening now, and there are no jets of steam. Have they seriously not considered that inconvenient little fact?

    They’re trying to compress 160 million years of seafloor spreading into 40 and 150 days at the same time. Of course they’re getting nonsensical solutions to their… LOL, they don’t even know the equations in the first place.

    Also, serious question; is it even possible for steam to move at supersonic speeds?

    Of course. The speed of sound isn’t a limit on how fast gases can move, it’s a limit on how fast vibrations in them can propagate.

  36. David Marjanović says

    You mean, like the E-meter?

    “Today, models of the E-meter include the Mark V, the Mark VI and the Mark VII. As of January 2005, the cost of the Mark V was $900 and the Mark VII Super Quantum E-meter was US $4,650.00 (up from US $3,850 in 1995).[citation needed] Scientologists of the Free Zone have developed their own E-meter models which are available at much lower prices. They also offer circuit diagrams and instructions for building a meter.[citation needed]“

  37. says

    If I were more egotistical, I’d wonder if they read a post of mine. My money says the whole thing is inconclusive, spun as a good outcome with wishy-washy epistemological relativism. They’ll agree to continue switching stories whenever it’s rhetorically convenient, and conveniently forget when one of their stories has been previously debunked when they move their trolling to new blogs/posts/forums/threads/feeds. Not that I expect anyone to bet against that prediction.

    I think they left out comets as another floodwater source. Apparently there are Creationists who actually argue a comet or comets fell to Earth and melted into the massive flood rainstorm, instead of, you know, evaporating and roasting the whole planet with the converted kinetic and gravitational potential energy of that enormous mass of water.

  38. Thumper; Atheist mate says

    @Glen Davidson

    Thank you, I genuinely did not know that; but I meant specifically in the situation they posit; can steam which is rising due to nothing more than density differences reach supersonic speeds? Surely not?

  39. Thumper; Atheist mate says

    @David Marjanovic

    That’s not the definitions I was taught :-/

    And fair point. I hadn’t considered the reduced time frame, though they are still idiots.

    And I mean an actual cloud of steam, rising skywards due to just density differentials, couldn’t be travelling faster than the speed of sound, could it?

  40. says

    Second thought: It’d be grimly funny if they went against my expectations and settled on a One True Creationist “Theory” and denounce competing Creationist ideas as heretical (or, heh, “evolutionist”). Even then, I think the likely response among the fundie community would be a collective shrug as they continue doing what they’ve been doing. If anything, there’d probably be a newagey subjectivist backlash from Creationists who complain that having to stick to one “truth” at all times is like having their hands tied behind their back.

    There’s a bit of a scary part in wondering what’d happen if they push their extremism to new(old) extremes.

  41. zekehoskin says

    Thumper, #47: I’ll play. (1) the speed of sound in superheated steam can be rather high. (2) Picture a ramjet kind of effect: pressure provided by a few miles of cold brine, a bit of water evaporated and superheated by magma, the resulting steam accelerated by the pressure differential: hell yes, supersonic. Plain ordinary rocket engines run at way less pressure and stuff comes out their nozzles at Mach mumble mumble 13 best case.
    Now, how to build the nozzle . . . ah, there the mind boggles. Besides, to the best of my understanding, the flood myths began when sea level rose enough for the Med to overflow into the lowlands now known as the floor of the Black Sea.

  42. says

    Now, how to build the nozzle . . . ah, there the mind boggles.

    I vaguely remember a video of someone putting that part to physics and something about how quickly the stone pipe “fountains” would break apart under Hydroplate conditions. It’s certainly not the clean physics word problem of perfectly rigid, uniform objects the Creationist seemed to think it was.

  43. Menyambal --- son of a son of a bachelor says

    Why do they keep nattering on about the Flood? It really isn’t important to Christianity, except that they have made it so.

    But I’m just aggravated that they don’t like my own “theory”. See, the human population of the world was still all in the Middle East (not having yet spread much from the Garden of Eden), and rather sensibly living in the flat lands. All God had to do was bring in a super-hurricane, which would have bought in a super tide surge, which would have submerged the low areas, and everybody drowns, so the Christians are happy.

  44. kemist, Dark Lord of the Sith says

    You mean, like the E-meter?

    Indeed.

    But there is no need to bother to build their own instruments. So-called “ghost hunters” have perfected the art of misusing existing ones (IR cameras, magnetometers and various radiation detectors) to come to bogus conclusions. Ditto for homeopathy researchers, who specialize in interpreting contaminant noise generated by raman spectrometers and calorimeters. It’s the modern equivalent of tea-leaf and bird entrail reading.

    The E-meter has the advantage of being a childishly simple instrument electronically, and cheap as hell to manufacture, considering that it costs a few thousand dollars to the poor schlob who buys it. It’s essentially what is called a Wheatstone bridge.

  45. says

    but I meant specifically in the situation they posit; can steam which is rising due to nothing more than density differences reach supersonic speeds? Surely not?

    Seems very unlikely, anyhow. The sun has convection currents moving at supersonic speeds, but it also has much higher pressures not that far below the “surface.” At earth atmosphere pressures, well, I don’t know if it would be utterly impossible, but surely improbable at any realistic scale.

    Not that they care much about the realistic.

    Glen Davidson

  46. says

    Why do they keep nattering on about the Flood? It really isn’t important to Christianity, except that they have made it so.

    I hadn’t thought about it that way. Kinda makes it funnier.

    Though I think a lot of them might consider it significant for the whole “Curse of Ham” thing so they can justify being racist. Without the flood, it’s arguably harder to assert that entire races are Ham’s descendents.

  47. says

    Why they’re at it, the panel can discuss whether the ‘Tardis’ theory, the ‘suspended animation’ theory or the ‘Hermione’s magic purse’ theory best explains how there was enough food for all the animals on the ark. Or has that already been resolved?

  48. Amphiox says

    Seems very unlikely, anyhow. The sun has convection currents moving at supersonic speeds, but it also has much higher pressures not that far below the “surface.” At earth atmosphere pressures, well, I don’t know if it would be utterly impossible, but surely improbable at any realistic scale.

    Is it even definitionally possible for any gaseous component of a planetary atmosphere to move at supersonic speeds (for that atmosphere)? The sun’s convection currents move a supersonic speeds relative to earth’s speed of sound, but they don’t (I think) move faster than the speed of sound in the sun. (Since the speed of sound varies with the composition of the atmosphere/substance it is traveling through).

  49. says

    Why do they keep nattering on about the Flood? It really isn’t important to Christianity, except that they have made it so.

    They don’t have a lot that can even pretend to explain the arrangement of fossils–the increase in complexity of organisms over time doesn’t fit with their creation story, and their timeline requires everything to be laid down pretty much at once. They need to flood to “sort” the fossils.
    Of course no flood would leave the fossils arranged as we find them, but the only alternative “explanation” is that God put them there to test our faith, or the devil put them there to mislead us. Interesting that 20 years ago those were the go-to explanations–remember the claims that dinosaurs never existed? Now it seems Jesus rode the beasts. I wonder if a peer-review panel came up with that one.

  50. Trebuchet says

    But I’m just aggravated that they don’t like my own “theory”. See, the human population of the world was still all in the Middle East (not having yet spread much from the Garden of Eden), and rather sensibly living in the flat lands. All God had to do was bring in a super-hurricane, which would have bought in a super tide surge, which would have submerged the low areas, and everybody drowns, so the Christians are happy.

    Silly Menyambal, all good Mor(m)ons know that the Garden of Eden was in Missouri. The flood was no doubt caused by a fracture of the New Madrid Fault.

  51. says

    Is it even definitionally possible for any gaseous component of a planetary atmosphere to move at supersonic speeds (for that atmosphere)? The sun’s convection currents move a supersonic speeds relative to earth’s speed of sound, but they don’t (I think) move faster than the speed of sound in the sun. (Since the speed of sound varies with the composition of the atmosphere/substance it is traveling through).

    Learn something:

    Occasional supersonic flows and shocks occur in both the horizontal flows at the intergranular lane boundaries and in the vertical flows below the surface, which results in weak shocks where these downflows collide with the upflows (Stein and Nordlund, 1998Jump To The Next Citation Point). The maximum Mach numbers are about 1.5 for horizontal flows and 1.8 for vertical flows. The maximum Mach numbers occur at the surface for the horizontal flows and half a megameter below the surface for the vertical flows (Figure 19View Image). The largest Mach numbers for both vertical and horizontal flows occur at the boundaries of the granules that overlie the boundaries of the larger scale subsurface flows (Figure 20View Image). It is at these locations that the downdrafts are strongest because they do not have to push against upflowing fluid and it is also here where these strong downflows are the strongest sinks for the diverging horizontal flows in the granules. Observational evidence for shocks waves in the solar photosphere were presented by (Rybák et al., 2004).

    Supersonic convective flows were first studied by Cattaneo et al. (1990) and Malagoli et al. (1990) in simple models with polytropic stratification and no radiative energy transfer. They predicted that supersonic flows are most likely to occur close to the photosphere in the case of convection in real stars; the horizontal pressure fluctuations need to be large, and the radiative (or boundary) cooling needs to be efficient, so the sound speed can be efficiently reduced while the flow is being accelerated. This prediction agrees well with what has later been found in models with detailed radiative transfer and non-ideal equations of state (Nordlund and Stein, 1991; Stein and Nordlund, 1998Jump To The Next Citation Point; Wedemeyer et al., 2003Jump To The Next Citation Point, 2004; Schaffenberger et al., 2006Jump To The Next Citation Point

    solarphysics.livingreviews.org/open?pubNo=lrsp-2009-2&page=articlesu14.html

    Glen Davidson

  52. Ragutis says

    the 3 main Flood Theories: Hydro Plate, Canopy and Plate Tectonics….etc.

    etc.??? Why the hell didn’t you just name it? Using “etc.” in place of the third of three`things is just fecking lazy. But then, intellectual sloth is to be expected from the idiots that think Noah was as real as the 7 dwarfs: Doc, Grumpy, Dopey, etc.

  53. Amphiox says

    Fascinating, Glen Davidson.

    Actually, regarding my original question, never mind.

    I just realized that jet engine exhaust pretty much has to exceed the sound barrier for any airplane traveling at supersonic speed, what with Newton’s Third Law and all (and the exhaust weighing less than the plane). So obviously it IS possible to make a mass of gas move faster than the speed of sound within the local atmosphere.

  54. Charlie Foxtrot says

    I immediately pictured a group of clowns sitting around a table made of bamboo and palm fronds, entering their ‘findings’ into a ‘computer’ made by The Professor of, well, bamboo and palm fronds – oh, and coconuts.

    I can kind of understand the thinking that building a airport will prompt the magical cargo planes to arrive bearing their wonders, but I have trouble seeing the ‘magical’ step in the scientific method that they seem to believe will lead to the ‘one true flood mechanics theory’. Pretty sure ‘no magic’ the entire point of the scientific method.

    and…Gilligan! Drop those coconuts!
    *Bonk!*
    Ouch!

  55. mildlymagnificent says

    Why do they keep nattering on about the Flood? It really isn’t important to Christianity, except that they have made it so.

    I used to think that. Now I have experience moderating a science forum where creationists turn up with monotonous regularity I’m starting to get the picture.

    I always thought why worry about the Big Bang? Goddidit seems like a perfectly good response from a believer. Evolution? Goddidit also seems perfectly OK as an answer. But no.

    The flood story seems to be central as the keystone to the young earth stuff. If you can somehow stuff all geology into that particular flood story, you can justify dismissing the billions of years necessary to explain the age of the universe and evolutionary timescales all with one hit. It’s the universal solver of my-religion versus all-of-science problems. It’s also quote-mine-able for arguments about the impossibility of people being responsible for any effect on climate and counteracts any argument devised from Genesis about “stewardship” of creation. The perfect “biblical” answer to any weak-kneed so-called christian (sneer, snort!) who tries to advance ecological principles as having any theological justification.

  56. Kristen Mayeaux says

    The fact that you are sooo hostile and hate-filled makes you look deeply troubled and deeply threatened by Intelligent Design and/or Creationism. I mean, there are some problems in evolutionary theory, for example the fully intact 100 million yr old dinosaur with skin, probably stomach contents, soft tissue found in Canada, which contradicts Decomposition Theory, and of course Mary Schweitzer’s discoveries. And Creationist researchers have gotten measurable levels of C14 from other dinosaur specimens. Why not put all of this to rest by testing for C14 in this new specimen? After all, there shouldn’t be one atom of C14 if it is really so old. If not, and adjustments are constantly made to keep the theory intact from any contradictory evidence, what a farce that is. What peer reviewed and fully conclusive empirical evidence has been discovered that overturns Decomposition Theory which states in every text book, by observation and experimentation, that all soft tissue beyond one million years could not exist?

  57. chigau (違う) says

    Kristen Mayeaux
    You may want to provide a few links to sources for your remarkable claims.

  58. anteprepro says

    The fact that you are sooo hostile and hate-filled makes you look deeply troubled and deeply threatened by Intelligent Design and/or Creationism.

    Well bless your heart, which Bible-lovin’ Diploma Mill gave you your fancy new e-psychiatry degree?

    I mean, there are some problems in evolutionary theory, for example the fully intact 100 million yr old dinosaur with skin, probably stomach contents, soft tissue found in Canada, which contradicts Decomposition Theory, and of course Mary Schweitzer’s discoveries.

    You really can’t possibly, seriously think that this is sufficient, can you? You can’t possibly believe that those are sufficient to undermine evolutionary theory. And then there is that ever present problem of assuming that simply disproving evolution is sufficient to make your case. For fuck’s sake, even if we said “yep, evolution is completely bunk” that doesn’t mean that Intelligent Design/Creationism wins by default and automatically becomes true. How about a little less pedantic quibbling away about the specifics of evolutionary theory and pretending that you are doing something, and how about trying to prove your own fucking hypotheses ? Just sayin’.

    And Creationist researchers have gotten measurable levels of C14 from other dinosaur specimens. Why not put all of this to rest by testing for C14 in this new specimen? After all, there shouldn’t be one atom of C14 if it is really so old.

    *Facepalm*

    Pfft, help:

    Samples older than the upper age-limit cannot be dated because the small number of remaining intrinsic 14C atoms will be obscured by the 14C background atoms introduced into the samples while they still resided in the environment, during sample preparation, or in the detection instrument. As of 2007, the limiting age for a 1 milligram sample of graphite is about ten half-lives, approximately 60,000 years.[16] This age is derived from that of the calibration blanks used in an analysis, whose 14C content is assumed to be the result of contamination during processing (as a result of this, some facilities[16] will not report an age greater than 60,000 years for any sample).

    Also, what the fuck is this “Decomposition Theory”? Is that just a term you’ve made up?

  59. Charlie Foxtrot says

    “Decomposition Theory”??? What is this of which you speak?

    Sounds similar to the “Water Is Wet Theory” that I just made up and published in the Journal of My Own Head.

  60. mildlymagnificent says

    I suspect that this C14 argument is related or linked in some way to one of the problems highlighted in this video from potholer54. Starting at 4.20 – talking about fossils.

  61. Charlie Foxtrot says

    Snark aside, Kristen, the Canadian ankylosaur is just a case of a very rare set of circumstances coming together to preserve a dinosaur better than usual.

    It is still fossilised, there is no ‘meat’ – it has all been replaced with minerals as is expected. However because it was encased in sediment very quickly and then not subjected to the usual pressure, the soft tissue fossils were protected and still recognisable. The paleontologist working on the specimen said it is like ‘pressed talc’ once the surrounding hard rock is removed.

    Oh, ‘Decomposition Theory’ is actually a mathematical thingy according to teh webz. Well, no point asking me about that, then!

  62. blf says

    The fact that you are sooo hostile and hate-filled makes you look deeply troubled and deeply threatened by Intelligent Design and/or Creationism.

    Projection.

    I mean, there are some problems in evolutionary theory, for example the fully intact 100 million yr old dinosaur with skin, probably stomach contents, soft tissue found in Canada,

    A highly unusually-well-preserved specimen, but nothing whatsoever to contradict Evolution. Also, there’s no organic soft tissue, it’s all fossilized.

    which contradicts Decomposition Theory,

    WHAT is this “Decomposition Theory” ?
    Or to put it another way: Citation Needed.

    and of course Mary Schweitzer’s discoveries.

    Citation Needed.

    And Creationist researchers have gotten measurable levels of C14 from other dinosaur specimens.

    Citation Needed.
    Assuming this has occurred, it would have to be contamination, unless they have exceptional evidence to the contrary. This one really, really, really needs a citation!

    Why not put all of this to rest by testing for C14 in this new specimen?

    (1) The fossil is tens of millions of years old. C14 degrades in c.100,000 years, and using it for dating generally isn’t reliable for specimen older than c.50,000 years.

    (2) A fossil is mineralized. It’s a rock! C14 is organic. It’s either not original (see contamination, above), or something unusual is going on.

    (3) Because creationistas have no concept of either evidence or theory. If they did, there would be no creation hypothesis, as it totally lacks evidence (there is simply none), and for it to be even plausible, essentially all of science would have to be wrong. Not just biology, but also cosmology and physics, chemistry, mechanics, and other disciplines. Or in short, creationism totally lacks any plausible theoretical underpinning.

    After all, there shouldn’t be one atom of C14 if it is really so old.

    Excepting possible contamination, that is also my understanding.

    If not, and adjustments are constantly made to keep the theory intact from any contradictory evidence, what a farce that is.

    Citation Needed.
    C14 dates do need adjusting, and the calibrations are updated (regularly, as far as I know), but so what? It’s like tuning your car’s engine.
    And in any case, there still a HUGE gap between the maximum of c.100,000 years for organic C14 dating, the the tens of millions of years of the mineralized fossil.

    What peer reviewed and fully conclusive empirical evidence has been discovered that overturns Decomposition Theory which states in every text book, by observation and experimentation, that all soft tissue beyond one million years could not exist?

    Citation Needed. Starting with, as per above, what is this “Decomposition Theory” ?

    Incidently, I am a mathematician by education. (So any errors in the above biology, chemistry, physics, et al, can probably be attributed to that.) I am aware there is something called “Decomposition Theory” in relation to graphs (networks), albeit I admit I no longer recall much detail. I very strongly doubt that bit of pure mathematics has anything to do with whatever this “Decomposition Theory” is about.

  63. Nerd of Redhead, Dances OM Trolls says

    Gee, the old carbon14 bullshit. Never mind there are multiple ways to make carbon 14. Funny how creobots always forget about neutron activation of carbon 13, forming carbon 14, which is the the one process that makes all old samples containing carbon date to 50,000-100,000 years ago. Both extremes which still refute the standard creationist 6,000 year old story line.

  64. mildlymagnificent says

    If you watch the video it turns out that the C14 showing up in fossils was probably from the varnishes and resins used on the surface to preserve the specimens.

  65. blf says

    and of course Mary Schweitzer’s discoveries.

    Citation Needed.

    My confusion: That is very probably referring to the claims to finding organic soft tissues and blood cells in a T. rex specimen by a team lead by Dr Mary Schweitzer at North Carolina State University. I didn’t recognize the name and then borked a quick search…  ☹

    Again, like the Canadian specium (which is all fossilized as far as currently known), so what? Dr Schweitzer’s team’s discoveries — if confirmed — don’t challenge Evolution (but could clarify some points in dinosaur genetics (and similar)), but do show that under circumstances not-yet-understood, certain organic samples can survive for vastly longer than thought. (C14 dating would still be useless due to the HUGE gap between the c.100,000 year C14 dating maximum and the tens of millions of years of the fossil and enclosed organic samples.)

    It is a rather amazing discovery if it holds up !

  66. Owlmirror says

    How many times does it have to be pointed out that Mary Schweitzer is not a YEC, and is not a creationist at all?

    Her own discoveries do not convince her that the current understanding of stratigraphy and radiometric dating thereof is somehow magically wrong.

    There is no such thing as “Decomposition Theory which states in every text book, by observation and experimentation, that all soft tissue beyond one million years could not exist”, and finding well-preserved Mesozoic dinosaurs therefore cannot possibly contradict it.

  67. Owlmirror says

    A fossil is mineralized. It’s a rock!

    Um. Actually, this is not necessarily the case, for the entire fossil, or for every fossil. Mineralization can certainly occur, but that’s not what happens in every environment.

    It’s exactly that common misconception about fossils that creationists trade on.

  68. Owlmirror says

    Because I miss Josh the geologist, I went back to the archive of the page where he discussed this a bit, and decided to copy-and-paste one of his great comments on the topic:

    Posted by:
    Josh |
    August 20, 2007 10:53 AM



    Aquila wrote: *Otherwise thank you (and Josh) on the elucidating comments on burial. Have you experimentally verified your statement that replacement of the organic tissue with minerals would have occurred over tens of thousands of years, and could have been ongoing for millions?*

    Aquila, you’re more than welcome.

    Regarding your question about work being conducted on the post-burial degredation rates of the organic fraction of vertebrate bone and subsequent replacement rates by minerals via groundwater solutions, some research has been and is being done on this. But for vertebrates certainly this aspect of the science of taphonomy is really still in its infancy. There just aren’t that many people who focus on this kind of stuff (I’m far less familiar with what folks who work on invertebrate fossils are up to, but I can tell you very little research has popped up on my radar).

    Since paleontology focuses on what ancient life was like *while that life was alive,* we’re far more interested in using taphonomy to help answer questions regarding the environment in which an animal lived than about what happened to it after it was dead and buried. So, because folks are trying to use taphonomic information to infer aspects of paleoenvironment, they’re much more often trying to understand what various environmental processes do to (mostly the outside of) a bone or shell or whatever *before* the element in question undergoes final burial.

    You’re asking about what is going on *after* final burial and we know far less about this because we CARE far less about this. As I stated in other posts, the degree of permineralization in a bone or shell is completely irrelevant to whether or not we think of it as a ‘fossil'(the process of permineralization is a continuum, sure, but it does *not* ever result in a yes or no as to whether something is or isn’t a fossil) and is actually irrelevant to most of the questions we try to answer *using* fossils. In general, broad declarative statements that minerals replace the original material in bones or shells over millions of years (or hundreds of thousands, or whatever) don’t really reflect the literature nor how paleontology currently looks at fossils or the permineralization process.

    BUT, that all being said, the level of detail in which we currently understand rates of perminalization DOES NOT AFFECT OUR UNDERSTANDING OF THE AGE OF A FOSSIL BECAUSE WE DO NOT DATE FOSSILS USING PERMINALIZATION. Well, perhaps some people out there somewhere do, but if so, they’re foolish and I’ll tell them that. I’m making this point because I presume you’re actually more interested in questions regarding the age of fossils than you are in discussing the nuances of the precipitation of calcite crystals out of groundwater.

    The fact that the study of permineralization is currently rather far behind some other aspects of paleontology CANNOT BE USED (if you’re being honest) to say– “SEE?! They don’t know how old the earth is! Scientists don’t know anything! He even just admitted they don’t understand fossilization rates well!” –because we simply *don’t use* permineralization to date fossils. Its like if Ford had trouble with side airbags and someone said, “See! Ford doesn’t know anything about Electronic Fuel Injection systems! They can’t get those side airbags to deploy properly at all! And they have the audacity to try and tell us their EFI system increases gas mileage by 13mpg? Ridiculous!”

    (and yes, I intentionally used the foolish phrase ‘fossilization rates’ above instead of properly saying perminealization because that is probably exactly how I would be misquoted).

  69. says

    I am shocked! Shocked PZ!

    You have not applied to be an unbiased peer!

    You could have so much fun just being rejected!

  70. says

    The fact that you are sooo hostile and hate-filled makes you look deeply troubled and deeply threatened by Intelligent Design and/or Creationism.

    You mean because we laugh at it like we laugh at other pseudoscience? Oh yeah, we’re deeply threatened by you bozos. You’re so important, aren’t you?

    I mean, there are some problems in evolutionary theory, for example the fully intact 100 million yr old dinosaur with skin, probably stomach contents, soft tissue found in Canada, which contradicts Decomposition Theory, and of course Mary Schweitzer’s discoveries.

    Hm, how do these explain the morphologic, genetic, and fossil evidence for evolution? I’m rather lost on that crucial matter.

    And Creationist researchers have gotten measurable levels of C14 from other dinosaur specimens. Why not put all of this to rest by testing for C14 in this new specimen? After all, there shouldn’t be one atom of C14 if it is really so old.

    Let’s see, you’ve explained uranium-lead dating, how? Oh yes, again, C14 does what to explain the highly derivative nature of life, you know, what you’d expect from known evolutionary processes? I don’t see any actual consideration of evolution in your hateful little diatribe.

    If not, and adjustments are constantly made to keep the theory intact from any contradictory evidence, what a farce that is.

    Do you have any contradictory evidence? At worst, you’ve brought up some dating issues (more like spit out some idiotic tripe), nothing that seriously touches upon evolution per se. And even if these were real problems, we have massive correlating evidence showing the earth to be old, which you can’t explain–or even understand properly.

    What peer reviewed and fully conclusive empirical evidence has been discovered that overturns Decomposition Theory which states in every text book, by observation and experimentation, that all soft tissue beyond one million years could not exist?

    You know, the whole soft tissue matter is bizarre, because if it can last 4000 years, why not 4 million, why not 4 billion? I mean if the rock remains undisturbed, of course. Sure, it becomes less likely as more time passes, but it’s extraordinary for 40 years, 400 year, or 4000 years. As for your “one million” year figure, that’s yanked straight from some YEC ass, just because it fits YEC lies and would be a problem for evolution–if it wasn’t a total lie.

    Time for you to learn some science, rather than just hating on it.

    Glen Davidson

  71. Amphiox says

    After all, there shouldn’t be one atom of C14 if it is really so old.

    SOMEONE doesn’t understand the physics of half-lives….

  72. Amphiox says

    and of course Mary Schweitzer’s discoveries

    Funny thing, that.

    Mary Schweizter, who ought to know the best about her own discoveries, is fully in agreement with the 70 million odd year old dating of her specimens.

  73. DLC says

    Hey, while we’re at it, could we also empanel peer review boards for The Theory of UFO Interactions, and the Theory of Post-Life Visitations ? I’m sure there are some impartial . . . Sorry, I am unable to keep a straight face.

    /jokerlaugh

  74. David Marjanović says

    The fact that you are sooo hostile and hate-filled makes you look deeply troubled and deeply threatened by Intelligent Design and/or Creationism.

    LOL. We’re just tired of having to refute the same talking points again and again and again and again and again…

    I mean, there are some problems in evolutionary theory, for example the fully intact 100 million yr old dinosaur

    1) What? What has that got to do with evolution?
    2) 100? Not 70 or so?
    3) “Fully intact”? Come on. You know full well this isn’t remotely true.

    with skin,

    Impressions? Phosphatized bacteria? What is it? What does it look like?

    probably stomach contents</blockquote

    Fossil stomach contents are common. They are, of course, fossilized, too. :-|

    Decomposition Theory

    …I am a paleontologist, and I’ve never encountered this term before, with or without capital letters.

    and of course Mary Schweitzer’s discoveries.

    Proteins that are heavily crosslinked soon after death – which can happen under special circumstances; that is the discovery here – are nigh indestructible. Nothing can eat them. Only heat and pressure can destroy them, and those didn’t apply (much) in those particular packs of rock.

    DNA does not last. No wonder. Unlike protein, it falls apart when stored in water; we use a large part of our energy to constantly repair it as long as we’re alive.

    And Creationist researchers have gotten measurable levels of C14 from other dinosaur specimens.

    From what, the shellac painted on it?

    Why not put all of this to rest by testing for C14 in this new specimen?

    Guess what?

    Schweitzer and her team have used mass spectrometry to sequence the protein fragments they found. This procedure does not leave C-14 undetected. Why haven’t they reported finding any?

    and adjustments are constantly made to keep the theory intact from any contradictory evidence

    Name one.

    Decomposition Theory which states in every text book

    That’s wrong.

    I’ve never seen a textbook which uses that term or claims that some separate law of nature, beyond ordinary chemistry, applies here.

    Being a paleontologist, I should really know of such a tiny “theory” if it existed.

    So…

    …I have to conclude you’re lying. You’re lying for Jesus. You’re bearing false witness about what you’ve never seen, because you clearly haven’t seen any textbooks from the inside.

    Shame on you.

  75. David Marjanović says

    such a tiny “theory”

    By this I mean the fact that the term “theory” is applied to overarching explanations which explain lots of seemingly unconnected facts and laws.

  76. kemist, Dark Lord of the Sith says

    Sounds similar to the “Water Is Wet Theory” that I just made up and published in the Journal of My Own Head.

    Mmm…

    I remember seeing it in the Journal of Straight Outta My Ass, from Steaming Pile Editions.

    The fact that you are sooo hostile and hate-filled makes you look deeply troubled and deeply threatened by Intelligent Design and/or Creationism.

    “Hostile” and “hate-filled” isn’t the way I would describe the reaction of most people here.

    Unless that’s what you call that weird hilarious/appalled/pity sensation you have when can’t stop staring at a car full of clowns crashing into a river made up of strawberry jello.