YEC Part 2

[Thanks to Alan Fox for asking questions about YEC and Elizabeth Liddle for her generosity in hosting this discussion]

YEC part 1 gave some theological and philosophical context to the case for YEC, and part 2 will hopefully focus solely on empirical and scientific considerations. Part 2 challenges the mainstream view that the fossil record is hundreds of millions of years old.

If empirical considerations alone suggest the fossil record is not more than a several million years old, does it matter on balance that the data don’t exactly arrive at 6,000 years old? I think not. As far as I’m concerned, if the fossil record is not anywhere near as old as the mainstream claims, the creationists will have won the essentials of their case independent of whether the universe and Earth are billions of years old. Creationists can afford to lose the issue of the age of the Earth and universe, but Darwinists cannot survive the fossils record being only a few million years old. But as I demonstrated in YEC part 1, time isn’t the friend of evolution anyway, it is an enemy since nature tends to erode complexity, not construct it.

If the age of a skyscraper built with 1 billion year old rocks does not imply the skyscraper was built 1 billion years ago, the age of the fossil record can be formally separated from the age of the universe and age of the Earth and age of rocks. The time of death of someone can be determined forensically and the process doesn’t rely on the age of the Earth or universe or rocks around deceased to make a reasonable inference. The age fossil record is about establishing the time of death of the fossil not the rocks the fossil is buried in. The age of when a strata was formed is independent of the age of the rocks that form the strata.

When I ask geologists how do permineralized or well-preserved fossils form. As a matter of principle, does the entombment happen quickly or slowly? “Quickly” is the usual reply. Why? Rapid burial with minerals and water are the necessary ingredients to effect preservation. If the creature dies and is left out in the open to scavangers and decay processes, it will not fossilize. So as a matter of principle, such fossil bearing formations didn’t take millions of years to form. Thus one can’t argue the fossil record is old because it took millions of years to bury them! In the case of wooly mammoths with undigested tropical vegetation in their stomachs, they’d have to be instantly buried in snow to effect the necessary freezing to preserve the vegetables in their stomachs — not millions of years. That’s the other thing, why are the mammoths in a tropical environment one moment and then buried in a cataclysmic blizzard the next, and then never unfrozen till discovered in Siberia? Hmm…..

So like a detective, we’ve established certain fossils are buried rapidly, not over millions of years. The question remains when it happened, or maybe when it couldn’t have happened.

The mean sea level of the US is here is around 760 meters. Erosion of a mere 10 microns per year would wipe 760 meters into the sea in 76 million years. A sheet of paper, by the way is 100 microns thick. The slowest mean erosion rate I’ve found in literature is 2.5 microns per year, and even that would wipe out the Phanerozoic in many areas.

I point to this empirical study by Princeton geologists Judson and Ritter: Judson and Ritter

Taking the average height of the United States above sea level as 2300 feet and assuming that the rates of erosion reported here are representative, we find that it would take 11 to 12 million years to move to the oceans a volume equivalent to that of the United States lying above sea level. At this rate there has been enough time since the Cretaceous to destroy such a land mass six times. Accepting this figure creates the problem of maintaining a continental mass above high elevations. A problem beyond the intent of this report

Granted, that may only be a mean value for now, but one can’t fight gravity, sediments will tend to move toward the oceans, erasing the fossil record in the process. Even if Judson and Ritter are off by a factor of 50, that would still wipe out the fossil record all the way to the beginning of the Cambrian.

But even more to the point, we have forensic clocks that may put an upper limit to the time of death of the fossil in question. There is the very embarrassing fact that the supposed carboniferous era of 300 million years ago has ubiquitious traces of C14, and this is acknowledged in peer-reviewed literature. 0.1% present day concentration of C14 will yield a presumed age of 57,000 years. That is 1 part in 1000. We have frequent detections of comparable levels, so much so many won’t even try to date with C14 beyond that presumed age because there seems to be a persistent amount in fossils!

Some claim contamination, but this explanation is not as credible as one might suppose.

First consider in-site contamination. To maintain a background persistent concentration of C14, one needs to keep adding more carbon from atmospheric sources into the fossil to maintain 0.1% concentraion. The problem with this scenario however is that the added C14 will decay away, and one needs to add even more carbon contaminants the next iteration to maintain a background C14 level of 0.1%. One ends up with something analogous to the compounding interest rate problem. Say I added a mere 0.1% contaminant every 50,000 years, over 300,000,000 years, the fossil will either gain 402 times in mass or be diluted from the original material by that factor. Maybe in-site contamination might work as an explanation for isolated cases, but not for repeated discoveries in diverse geographical locations, otherwise one would have to argue nature conspired to fool us by contaminating the entire world recently for no good reason.

Consider contamination during processing of the fossil. 1 part in 1000 might seem like very little, but consider contaminating a hard piece of fossil marble or shell or bone. Just to illustrate, take a 1 gallon (not quite 4 liters) sample of something hard. A little less than a small teaspoon (4 milliliters) of contaminant to 1 gallon would be 1 part in 1000. Do you think you can force that much contaminant into something relatively hard? 🙂 Even 1 teaspoon into 10 gallons wouldn’t exactly be easy (1 part in 10,000). So this is not as credible an explanation as would be supposed either. Are experiments and analysis actually done to determine the source of contamination? No, because the fossils C14 is primarily due to contamination, it is due to the fact the fossils are young. And few are willing to stick there neck out to point out they can’t demonstrate the source of supposed contamination.

Radioactive decay chains have be also ruled out unless of course one assumes 99% Uranium and less than 1% of fossil!

Problems using Coal as a C14 free source

Lowe points out:

Many (super 14) C dating laboratories have established that coal samples exhibit a finite (super 14) C age, apparently caused by contamination of the specimens before any laboratory preparation is undertaken.

He then points out the contamination cannot be due to radioactive decay of other products:

Because coal is formed over geological time scales at depths providing excellent shielding from cosmic rays, its 14C content should be insignificant in comparison to the 14C introduced by even the most careful sample preparation techniques used in 14C dating laboratories. How is it then, that a material, which should show a14C age indistinguishable from that produced by a combination of machine background and contamination during careful sample preparation, routinely produces a finite 14C age?

One suggestion is that radium, which is present in some coals at the sub pm level, as a decay product of the uranium/thorium series, may produce 4C during an extremely rare decay event (Rose & Jones, 1984). Jull,Barker and Donahue (1987) have detected 14C from this process in uranium/ thorium ores. Blendowski, Fliessbach and Walliser (1987) however, have shown that the 14( decay mode of 226Ra is only of the order of 10-11 of the preferred a decay channel to 222Rn. Thus, the amount of 14C produced by such events derived from radium in coal must be considered as insignificant.

and finally capitulation at the ubiquity of the problem

There are many other unpublished accounts by 14C laboratories in which the use of coal as a background test material has been investigated. In many cases, the samples were found to contain 14C, and further studies were discontinued. The AMS and gas counting facilities, DSIR, in Lower Hutt, New Zealand, eg, have observed apparent ages for coal specimens ranging from 25-40 kyr, and the NSF Accelerator Facility at Tucson, Arizona has determined ages of anthracite samples ranging from 30-40 kyr (AJT Jull, pers commun, 1988).

Lowe invokes bacterial contamination, but I pointed out why such in site contamination is contradicted by the “compounding interest” problem, not to mention, bacteria in deep parts of the Earth would be feasting off C14 depleted carbon, not atmospheric carbon!

Next is the fact of biological materials with half-lives that preclude their persistence in fossils. DNA has a half life 521 years give or take, homochiral amino acids have half-lives on the order of hundreds or a few thousand years. The state of these biological materials in fossils is inconsistent with the time of death hundreds of millions of years ago.

Additionally, we have ancient fossil DNA that looks like modern DNA, breaking the biological molecular clock hypothesis. See: Pardox of Ancient Bacterium. But detractors bring up the contamination complaint yet again.

The actual forensic clocks refute old age fossils in the fossils themselves (C14, DNA, homochiral amino acids, inconsistency with biological molecular clock). The well preserved variety of fossils could not have been buried in a process taking millions of years as a matter of principle, and there should be serious doubt the fossil record would still be around after hundred million years, maybe not even 11 million years.

Finally, I keep hearing assertions about all the mounds of data that prove the fossils are old. Actually it’s mounds of publication not mounds of actual facts. The amount of words dumped out does not necessarily make claims any more credible than Kairos Focus being verbose proves Kairos Focus’ FYI/FTR are correct. It’s the physical facts that count. The tons of fossilized material themselves do not indicate an age that is as old as most presume.

336 thoughts on “YEC Part 2

  1. stcordova: I just gave a few examples with overthrusts, and who knows what other mechanism where even by mainstream standards old age rocks lie above young strata.

    People DO know “what other mechanism”, Sal. You seem to have very little regard for the expertise of geologists!

  2. stcordova,

    Goes to show there are mechanisms which can put something dated older above something dated younger.

    Of course there are. They are typically associated with orogenic zones. But they are readily identified. The existence of such does not cast doubt on the succession in long-undisturbed zones, where parallel strata extending for miles neatly overlay, and multiple isotopes speak to older underlying younger uniformly. Orogenic overfolding leaves a distinctive mark, and cannot be assumed to be the norm.

    The true age of the time of death of the fossil is the fossil clock itself, why go through the insanity of dating rocks when you can directly date the fossils themselves?

    Because there are no dating methods that work sufficiently well on the fossils. Amino acid racemisation is not recommended for dating rocks. Same for C14. It IS subject to contamination issues, no matter how much you wish it were otherwise (a reverse of the usual debate where one has to persuade the YEC of the accuracy of C14, because it points to an earth at least 50,000 years old). Since you like a quote mine, here’s one for you: “It is very difficult or impossible to prove that a given sample has not been contaminated. Parent or daughter products could have leached in or out of the sample.” – Kent Hovind.

    Of course, he’s focussing on “a given sample”, and there are isochron methods, multiple isotopes, and multiple data points allowing the signal to rise above the noise on the broader scale. Precisely what you don’t have with your C14 in coal (but not, oddly, in limestone). There is so much variation, there is no signal.

    As to your ‘compound interest’ talking point, it does not apply to ground water or to uranium isotopic generation. Groundwater flows, from the surface through the rocks, bringing fresh C14 as dissolved CO2 and humic components. Uranium has a sufficiently long half life that it can continuously generate fresh C14 as it decays.

    Anyway, any comments on my limestone calculation?

  3. For all of Glen Davidson’s ranting about me, he has yet to demonstrate the relevance of Si02 contributing to the increase of C14 in fossils.

    Glen, can you explain for the science students how Si02 can result in the synthesis of C14 in fossils? 🙂

  4. stcordova: Consillience? How about peer-reviewed enforcement of a narrative where conflicting data are edited out and explained away.

    Please provide a source for this allegation.

  5. Please provide a source for this allegation.

    Me. 🙂

    Or how about this letter from UGA which can be found by scrolling in this link:

    How much peer-rejection attitude fostering: like rejection of the entire geological record that has C14 traces, amino acid traces, DNA traces ALL over. These are normal data points, not outliers, but they are institutionally ignored. The outlier is complete absence of some trace.

    There is a “compounding interest” problem with C14, amino and DNA clocks, so the contamination argument can only go so far. The forensic evidence is there for the recent time of death of the fossils. That is formally a separate issue than the U-Pb, K-Ar dates that the fossils may be entombed with.

    Old U-Pb, K-Ar dates for rocks lying above youthful strata is physically possible, and even plausible if one believes things like Heart Mountain can move over young strata:

    World’s Biggest Landslide Floated Like a Hovercraft

    Imagine a landslide as big as Rhode Island speeding toward you as fast as an Indianapolis 500 sprint car.

    Just how can a mountain move so fast? The massive Heart Mountain landslide in Wyoming raced to its final resting place on a cushion of carbon dioxide gas, similar to a hovercraft gliding on air, a new study suggests.

    “Even I have a hard time visualizing a mountain moving 50 kilometers [31 miles], but you can move it if the friction is low enough,” said lead study author Tom Mitchell, a geophysicist at University College London in the United Kingdom. [Natural Disasters: Top 10 US Threats]

    So there is no a apriori reason for dating a fossil time of death by the K-Ar, U-Pb dates of rocks that may entomb them, and there is already accepted situations, no matter how outrageous the mechanism, that young fossils can be buried under “old” rock.

    The erosion rates are neither outliers. In fact the slowest published erosion rate would erase much of the geological record via erosion.

  6. As I said, I was an Old Earth Creationist. One of the reasons I became more convinced about YEC was my arguments with llaniteDave at ARN in 2004. I actually reviewed mainstream literature, and in the process found the explanations wanting.

    Here is one paradox that some claim is resolved, and others don’t. The “best” solution currently requires GLOBAL WARMING to make evolution possible:

    The faint young Sun paradox or problem describes the apparent contradiction between observations of liquid water early in Earth’s history and the astrophysical expectation that the Sun’s output would be only 70 percent as intense during that epoch as it is during the modern epoch.

    The planet would have been an iceball and remained an iceball during the Cambrian and Pre-Cambrian eras. Even if the Earth is old there must have been fine-tuned Global Warming or some poof mechanism to remove the ice and keep Earth warm and cozy enough to host life. Life won’t evolve on an iceball.

    Here again is an example of mainstream data, when critically analyzed, indicates the youthfulness of life on Earth.

    Say hypothetically the Earth did melt out of the iceball, then that still implies life is young, and hence the Young Life Hypothesis component of YEC is very credible.

    The young age of the fossils is consistent with the Faint Young Sun paradox.

  7. Another reason I suspect the Solar System is young:

    At the scandalous premiere of Privileged Planet at the Smithsonian Institution several years ago, astronomer Guillermo Gonzalez said something to the effect “not only are we in the right place in the universe, we’re alive at the right time!” Dr. Gonzalez, normally unexpressive and soft spoken, was uncharacteristically emphatic about being alive at the right time in cosmic history, suggesting the window of arrival of homo sapiens and modern technology happened within an exceedingly narrow time frame. He was so emphatic that one would surmise he was seeing a miracle, as if whatever was the source of the universe specially ordained this time and place in the fabric of reality.

    From the prestigious scientific journal Nature: Caught in the Act

    Ever since Copernicus evicted Earth from its privileged spot at the centre of the Solar System, researchers have embraced the idea that there is nothing special about our time and place in the Universe. What observers see now, they presume, has been going on for billions of years — and will continue for eons to come.

    But observations of the distant reaches of the Solar System made in the past few years are challenging that concept. The most active bodies out there — Jupiter’s moon Io and Saturn’s moons Enceladus and Titan — may be putting on limited-run shows that humans are lucky to witness. Saturn’s brilliant rings, too, might have appeared relatively recently, and could grow dingy over time. Some such proposals make planetary researchers uncomfortable, because it is statistically unlikely that humans would catch any one object engaged in unusual activity — let alone several.

    The proposals also go against the grain of one of geology’s founding principles: uniformitarianism, which states that planets are shaped by gradual, ongoing processes. “Geologists like things to be the same as they ever were,” says Jeff Moore, a planetary scientist at the NASA Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, California. The unchanging world is “philosophically comforting because you don’t have to assume you’re living in special times”, he says.

    But on occasion, the available evidence forces researchers out of their comfort zone. Here, Nature looks at some of the frozen worlds that may be putting on an unusual spectacle.


  8. “This is rather as if you imagine a puddle waking up one morning and thinking, ‘This is an interesting world I find myself in — an interesting hole I find myself in — fits me rather neatly, doesn’t it? In fact it fits me staggeringly well, must have been made to have me in it!’ This is such a powerful idea that as the sun rises in the sky and the air heats up and as, gradually, the puddle gets smaller and smaller, frantically hanging on to the notion that everything’s going to be alright, because this world was meant to have him in it, was built to have him in it; so the moment he disappears catches him rather by surprise. I think this may be something we need to be on the watch out for.”

  9. OMagnian,

    There is a naturalistic explanation for the puddle fitting the hole, there isn’t one in terms of expectation for the confluence of youthful indicators for the Solar System except:

    1. luck
    2. fortuitous fine tuning coordinating the events (more luck)
    3. the Solar System is actually young

    Alan Fox asked why I believe in YEC, on of my answers to him is the confluence of youthful indicators. The confluence of youthful indicators for the Solar System was one of the considerations that converted me from OEC to YEC.

    I should add, comets look youthful and special. Arguments for a non-existent OORT cloud were concocted to explain the problem away, the problem remains. LlaniteDave was toasted pretty badly on these points in our 2004 exchange.

  10. Stcorodva,

    stcordova: There is a naturalistic explanation for the puddle fitting the hole

    I think you may have missed the point. It’s not that the puddle fits the hole, it’s it’s interpretation of that fact.

    stcordova: there isn’t one in terms of expectation for the confluence of youthful indicators for the Solar System

    If you mean those quotes you just provided, no, none of those were indicators that the solar system is young.

    stcordova: 1. luck

    I asked you a question about how many things fossilise. I don’t believe you answered it. I have similar faith in receiving an answer to the question how many solar systems are there?

    stcordova: 2. fortuitous fine tuning coordinating the events (more luck)

    What does that even mean? Fortuitous fine tuning is your claim and here you equate it to luck, or improbability? Good luck undermining your own claims in the future too.

    stcordova: 3. the Solar System is actually young

    Perhaps it is and perhaps it is not. But what about Epsilon Eridani? We can look at that from where we are. Is it just our solar system you claim is young or all of them?

    The age of Epsilon Eridani is about 440 million years, but this remains subject to debate. Most age estimation methods place it in the range from 200 million to 800 million years.

    stcordova: Alan Fox asked why I believe in YEC, on of my answers to him is the confluence of youthful indicators.

    Which you have had to pick out as needles from a forest of straw.

    stcordova: The confluence of youthful indicators for the Solar System was one of the considerations that converted me from OEC to YEC.

    What about Epsilon Eridani? Presumably there are similar indicators for Epsilon Eridani, what do they say about it’s age?

    stcordova: I should add, comets look youthful and special.

    Extrasolar comets exist. How do you deal with them?

    stcordova: Arguments for a non-existent OORT cloud were concocted to explain the problem away, the problem remains.

    Citation please. So you think the OORT cloud was concocted to cover up the young age of the solar system?

    Really? I’ll have to repeat that I think. You think the idea of the OORT cloud was concocted solely to cover up the young age of the solar system?

    What is the “problem” exactly? That comets look youthful and special? Care to put an age on a specific comet and justify that age?

    stcordova: LlaniteDave was toasted pretty badly on these points in our 2004 exchange.

    Then you’ll be happy to provide links to it, won’t you? I’ll go and have a look. And in that intervening decade do you think the evidence has been in your favour?

  11. stcorodva,
    Out of interest, how do you even go about starting to explain stuff like this?

    Because the lake is extremely still, is low in oxygen and has not been disturbed by glaciers or geologic activity anytime in the last 52,800 years, these microscopic layers comprise a complete, annual record preserved in sediment cores.

    Moreover, because leaves and other organic materials have been trapped between the layers, the scientists were able to use the amount of C-14 in each leaf to construct a complete picture of atmospheric C-14 over time. Previously atmospheric C-14 records came from marine samples (which differ from those on land) or tree rings (which only dated to a little more than 12,000 years ago), so these cores will greatly improve the precision of radiocarbon dating for older objects. The researchers “anchored” the new C-14 record to previous data by matching up the levels found in the more recent layers of the cores to those already known from the tree rings.

  12. stcordova: As I said, I was an Old Earth Creationist.

    Well, I think you should try again. YEC just doesn’t add up at all. There are perfectly good explanations for all the apparent anomalies that YEC sites trot out (which is why we call them PRATTs) and none for the huge amount of consilience between independent lines of enquiry that not only converge on an old earth, but a fairly precise age for both the earth and the universe.

    Seriously Sal, you are clutching at straws here. And when one straw sinks, you clutch another. They are all straws. The flood you are drowning in is the flood of CONSILIENT data. Varves alone knock YEC out of the water (or into it, to stick with my metaphor) – there are far too many of them for YEC to be true.

  13. Our dates for fossils must be false, and the reason is completely logical. What is now a fossil is the remains of a once living organism, and that organism was alive for some period of time before it’s death, and the age of the fossil fails to consider the age of the organism when it died. So all such dates are wrong. And YEC is therefore true. QED.

    More proof that the earth is billions of years young.

  14. Moreover, we recognize these layers are out of order just because we have ordered layers to compare them to. Man oh man.

  15. Then you’ll be happy to provide links to it, won’t you? I’ll go and have a look.

    He’s here and we can give you a replay, better yet you can spar with me. 🙂

  16. stcordova: He’s here and we can give you a replay, better yet you can spar with me.


    Because the lake is extremely still, is low in oxygen and has not been disturbed by glaciers or geologic activity anytime in the last 52,800 years, these microscopic layers comprise a complete, annual record preserved in sediment cores.

    Physical evidence that the earth is 52,800 years old at least, without any dependence on any radio-anything.

    Spar with that. Or ignore it, as you prefer.

  17. stcordova: He’s here and we can give you a replay,

    It would have been quicker for you to put the link in, as you mentioned it in the first place. What are you scared of?

  18. OMagain: Physical evidence that the earth is 52,800 years old at least, without any dependence on any radio-anything.

    Well there you go. The earth is at least 52,000 years young. I am willing to take a stand on that and defend it.

  19. Mung: The earth is at least 52,000 years young. I am willing to take a stand on that and defend it.


  20. OMagain you seem intent on picking a fight. I derive a small amount of pleasure every time I deny you the opportunity to do so. Do keep trying though. 🙂

    Perhaps the earth really is at least 52,801 years old and I really am a horrid person for not saying I accept that as a fact.

  21. Pluto has some young features. 🙂

    Creationist prediction by a YEC who was expelled from JPL, my friend, David Coppedge:

    Prediction 1: Evidence of surface activity will be found that will be hard to explain continuing for billions of years. Prediction 2: The orbital dance of the moons will defy stability for billions of years. Prediction 3: Compositional features of the bodies will challenge theories of accretion from the same region of a dust disk. Prediction 4: Secular planetary scientists will invoke collisions to explain all the anomalies.

    Prediction 1 has some support:

    The thin frosting of nitrogen and other volatiles on top of water-ice bedrock was intriguing, said Prof Stern, because Pluto’s tenuous, mainly nitrogen atmosphere was constantly being lost to space.

    Ok, so if you heat a kettle of water, the water evaporates. Nitrogen ice will evaporate with heat. So why is it still there and not gone and evaporated after billions of years into space?

    “We have not found a single impact crater on this image. This means it must be a very young surface,” he said.

    Must be very young baby, must be very young!

  22. Patrick: Don’t try to rewrite history to make him a martyr.

    If they don’t have martyrs, they got nuttin’ at all.

  23. Pluto is young, therefore the earth was created 6000 years ago, and all evidence for the actual age of the earth converges on a single date, July 16, 4004 BC.

  24. Mung: But we do have martyrs.


    Martyrs, or to be honest, so-called”martyrs”, second only to nuttin’ at all.

    Wake me up when you’ve really got sumtin’.

  25. There are various phenomenon in the Solar System that are consistent with youth. Something young inside the Solar System doesn’t establish the youth of the Solar System but what evolutionist want to avoid is the appearance of being in a privileged or highly lucky situation. Having many specialized phenomenon that appear to have happened recently indicates a privileged position, and privileged positions start to hint of something miraculous.

    Comets are made up mostly of ice. When they orbit the sun and get close to it during part of the orbit, part of the ice steams off (proper term is sublimate) and eventually the comet will vaporize and be gone.

    Purely out of philosophical bias rather hard-nosed empiricism, explanations were concocted to argue for a steady source of new comets to replace disappearing ones.

    Retired University of South Carolina astronomer Danny Faulkner writes:

    Comets are continually being lost through decay, collisions with planets, and ejections from the solar system. If the solar system were billions of years old, then all comets would have long ago ceased to exist if they were not continually being replaced. Thus to sustain long-age thinking, a way is needed to ‘resupply’ the solar system with comets from time to time.

    For years, evolutionary astronomers have believed that long-period comets (those with orbital periods of more than 200 years) come from the so-called ‘Oort cloud’. The Oort cloud supposedly contains billions of comet nuclei orbiting the sun thousands of times further from it than the Earth. Astronomers think that the gravity of an occasional passing star or other object, or possibly a galactic tide, causes comets from the Oort cloud to fall into the inner solar system. This mechanism supposedly supplies the influx of comets needed to overcome the conclusion that the solar system is young.

    There are problems with the Oort cloud, the greatest being that there is absolutely no evidence that it even exists!1 However, a recent study has revealed a new problem.2 Evolutionary theories of the origin of the solar system state that comet nuclei came from material left over from the formation of the planets. According to the theory, this icy material was sent out to the Oort cloud in the outer reaches of the solar system by the gravity of the newly formed planets. All of the earlier studies ignored collisions between the comet nuclei during this process.

    This new study has considered these collisions and has found that most of the comets would have been destroyed by the collisions. Thus, instead of having a combined mass of perhaps 40 Earths, the Oort cloud should have at most the mass of about a single Earth. It is doubtful that this is enough mass to account for the comets that we see. The researchers postulate ‘escape valves’3 that could supply up to 3.5 Earth masses, but this is still ‘low compared to recent estimates of the mass of the Oort cloud’. They go on to ‘speculate that a distant source region for Oort cloud comets’3 could resolve some other problems [emphasis added].

    Of course, if the solar system is much younger than most astronomers think, then there is no need for the Oort comet cloud. Since it cannot be detected, the Oort cloud is not a scientific concept. This is not bad science, but non-science masquerading as science.

  26. If I understand the argument correctly, it is saying that we can get rid of one potential weakness in our theory by introducing an entire host of other weaknesses. And thus we make progress in knowledge and understanding.

  27. Regarding comets: There are some comets with extremely short periods—like, 10 years and under—of which the best known may be Encke’s Comet, with a period of 3.3 years. If the Solar System is only 6,000 years old, and all comets date back to the creation of the Solar System, it follows that Encke’s Comet must have made (6,000 / 3.3 =) a bit more than eighteen hundred close passes to the Sun.

    Now, I can’t say I’m totally familiar with all the relevant data, but I’m pretty sure that 1,800 close passes to the Sun is more than enough to boil that sucker down to the bare rock/dirt. But that hasn’t happened! Ergo, Encke’s Comet must be substantially younger than even a 6,000-years-young Solar System. Ergo, there must be at least one post-Creation source for comets, even under a Young Earth timescale.

    I don’t expect Cordova to take this inconvenient (to Cordova) fact on board, as it’s pretty much irrefutable that YECs aren’t in it for factual accuracy. But, you know, just to have it out there.

  28. I don’t expect Cordova to take this inconvenient (to Cordova) fact on board, as it’s pretty much irrefutable that YECs aren’t in it for factual accuracy. But, you know, just to have it out there.

    Slight change in accounting for Solar System mass outside of Neptune’s orbit will affect long period comet’s orbital period to less than 6,000 years. There are reports of strange pairs of comets which may actually be the same comet with a substantially shorter period.

    The possibility of a slight change in the accounting of mass outside of Neptune’s orbit is a testable prediction, which is more than I can say for evolutionary theory.

    But by all accounts there is a troubling confluence of privileged phenomenon that are young in the Solar System as pointed out by the article in Nature I linked to above.

  29. stcordova,

    The possibility of a slight change in the accounting of mass outside of Neptune’s orbit is a testable prediction, which is more than I can say for evolutionary theory.

    What rot. Evolutionary theory makes testable predictions about the fossil record, about morphological hierarchies, about comparative genomics, about karyotype distributions, and so on and so on.

    What’s the YEC explanation for comets? The remains of the Flood?

  30. sez cordova:

    Slight change in accounting for Solar System mass outside of Neptune’s orbit…

    …will not alter the fact that each time a comet makes a close pass to the Sun, some of its volatiles boil off into the vacuum of space.
    …will not alter the fact that there are, indeed, comets whose periods are well under 10 years.
    …will not alter the fact that any such extremely-short-period comet that was created ca. 6K years ago, would necessarily have boiled itself down to the bare rock as a result of the several hundred close Solar passes that comet would necessarily have made in the ca. 6K years since its “birth”.
    …will not alter the fact that there are a number of extremely-short-period comets which have not boiled themselves down to the bare rock.
    …will not alter the fact that even under a YEC-friendly timescale for the existence of the Solar System, there must necessarily be some kind of post-Creation source for comets.

    Any time cordova feels like addressing the actual content of this argument (as distinct from disgorging a fog of verbiage to distract readers from recognizing that he isn’t, like, addressing the argument at all), he is welcome to do so. Given cordova’s long-standing, multiply documented track record in matters of this sort, however, I ain’t gonna hold my breath waiting.

  31. stcordova: The possibility of a slight change in the accounting of mass outside of Neptune’s orbit is a testable prediction

    test it already or stfu.

  32. People have criticized my YLC claims by saying the anomalies I cite are minor. I sharply disagree.

    One of the most famous Paleontologists/Evoltuionary biologists in history was Stephen J. Gould. It is well-known fact, albeit mostly forgotten, he had a YEC PhD student who was an undegrad student also of Paleontologist David Raup (the best of the best), by the name of Kurt Wise.

    Wise gives the YEC perspective in the following 45 minute video and explains the problem of bio purturbation. You see, one might complain that I’m illiterate, but one can’t complain Kurt Wise is illiterate. After all he was Gould’s PhD student at Harvard and Lewontin’s graduate research assistant.

    The relevant part is 9 minutes in.

    This was a devastating critique of the Old Fossil Record interpretation.

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