Coyote pretty much just performed a first round knockout.
Mindspawn's reply indicates he either doesn't understand the graph, or he thinks that lake varves around the world all experience the same number of extra varve layers every year, and that 14C dating is also off by an identical amount so that it agrees with all the lake varves.
The graph *does* indicate about 1.2 varve layers per year on average.
I thought the y-axis was "calibrated" radiocarbon years.
But that was just a side comment. My first point still holds, that Mindspawn either misunderstands the graph in some significant way, or believes in coincidences with probabilities indistinguishable from zero.
The half-life of Uranium-Thorium is not independently established in a laboratory...
Even though it doesn't seem to help Mindspawn, don't we still want to correct the misunderstandings and misinformation? Creationists have a way of cramming huge amounts of misinformation into a small number of words, and the above 13 words are no exception.
"Uranium-Thorium" is a dating method, not an element with a half life.
Uranium is one element, Thorium is another.
Both Uranium and Thorium have a number of isotopes. Isotopes are a family of types of the same element with the same number of protons in the nucleus but different numbers of neutrons. Each isotope will have a different half-life, except for stable isotopes which do not decay and therefore do not have a half-life.
The Uranium referred to is 234U with a half-life of 245,000 years.
The Thorium referred to is 230Th with a half life of 75,000 years.
The half-lives of both 234U and 230Th have been measured in the laboratory.
I think Coyote should return to the thread and not worry about Mindspawn ever getting it, just provide correct information and untangle any misunderstandings that might confuse others.
I appreciate your providing of some detail, but how did I add to the confusion by citing an article that provided independent values for the half life of each of the isotopes?
I don't remember seeing that citation when I replied. I see there was an edit, so maybe it wasn't part of your original response? The time of my reply is when I finished, not when I started, I've been multi-tasking.
I thought Mindspawn might become convinced that varve layers are predominantly annual if I pointed out a volcanic layer among the Lake Suigetsu varve layers that corresponded to a famous recent volcanic eruption whose date is part of known history, such as Krakatoa in 1883 or Vesuvius in 79. If, for example, the Krakatoa layer could be identified, and if the number of varve layers above the Krakatoa layer equaled the number of years since 1883, then Mindspawn must concede that varve layers are annual.
I was surprised to be unable to find evidence of any such volcanic layers in lake varves. There *is* research that has identified many volcanic layers in lake varves and matched them to known volcanic events, but only for ancient eruptions of pre-history.
Has anyone uncovered any evidence for a varve layer from a volcanic eruption whose date is known from history rather than dating methods?
Does Mindspawn understand that this is a super-closeup of about 2½ tree rings? That the little squares represent the tiny growth cells that make up a tree ring? That there's a difference between early growth cells (thin walled) and late growth cells (thick walled)? If he doesn't understand this then he won't understand how it is that double-rings can be so easily identified.
Evidently this, from Mindspawn's Message 57, is what he considers a pleasant exchange of ideas:
If dendrochronologists overlook an obvious fact that trees completely starved of moisture during their growth season do actually stop growing , then this is incompetent. In their defense though they wouldn't want their findings to contradict evolutionary timeframes and bring down the ridicule of the establishment, so its the establishment's fault that open-mindedness has been replaced by an almost religious fervour to support evolution and mock those who question it. This mocking attitude of the establishment is suppressing true science in much the same manner as some members of this board resort to swearing and ridicule instead of a pleasant exchange of ideas. Oh well.....
Dendrochronologists are incompetent and purposefully draw conclusions that support evolutionary timeframes because they fear ridicule. The scientific establishment has a religious fervour in support of evolution that mocks objections and suppresses true science.
All just a pleasant exchange of ideas, certainly nothing anyone should take offense at.
I wonder what will give out first, Mindspawn's increasingly detailed questioning of evidence, or RAZD's willingness to produce patient and well-researched essays.
I also wonder if Mindspawn has any idea where he is going. He plods mindlessly on challenging one thing after another without seeming to consider that what he has conceded we know already rules out a young Earth and even a merely old Earth. If everything he questioned did turn out to be wrong to the maximum degree possible it would still point to an ancient Earth. It's like he doesn't understand the magnitude of the errors he needs.
Does anyone know of any dendrochronological evidence from Biblical sites of known age? It would be interesting to get Mindspawn's reaction.
I don't fault him for this. I think most of us have had personal experience with the difficulty of admitting defeat and can identify with him.
RAZD's the right person to take the debate to an absurd level of detail (not a criticism of RAZD, it's been forced on him), but what I do fault Mindspawn for is making this necessary. His scenario requires trees all over the world to synchronously average 11 or 12 extra tree rings per year for millennium after millennium, which fails the very first level of sanity check. The discussion about extra tree rings should never have happened. Mindspawn should have thought for 10 seconds about the implications of all these extra tree rings as an explanation and said to himself, "Nope, that's impossibly unlikely, the error must come from somewhere else," and then never mentioned it. The kind of unlikelihood he requires is miraculous, no different than explaining something by declaring, "It's a miracle!"
There must be many creationists out there familiar enough with forestry or tree science who could tell Mindspawn how silly he's being.
Rational thinking is still noticeably absent in Mindspawn's latest post (Message 75). He's arguing that recently discovered minute changes in decay rates mean that decay rates 10 times greater are possible. But the technical paper makes clear that these changes are on the order of ±.001.
Mindspawn also needs all isotopes to be affected to the same degree, but the paper says, "This indicates that, as an experimental observation, isotopes have different sensitivities to whatever influence is causing the observed effects."
Mindspawn obviously accepts that we can measure the decay rate of isotopes with an accuracy greater than ±.001, otherwise he would have to reject the these findings of decay rate variability, yet he rejects the possibility of measuring the decay rate of other isotopes like 234U with any accuracy.
IIRC he's made no comment on the many counting measurements that have been produced, in the debate and other threads.
True, but unless he is ignoring them and pretending they don't exist he obviously rejected them or he would not continue arguing as he is. Maybe RAZD should present that evidence again and see if he can garner an actual comment one way or the other.
Are you sure that Mindspawn now accepts that we know the half-life of 234U with acceptable accuracy? Poking around the thread, his last comment about 234U that I could find was Message 44. Unless there's a more recent one, I suspect he remains unconvinced.
Mindspawn frequently claims past variations in the Earth's magnetic field strength as an explanation for huge variations in isotope half-life, as if our magnetic field could have been any value at all in the past. RAZD has so far limited himself to pointing out that magnetic fields as strong as the Earth's have no measurable effect on half-lives, and that variations in the degree of protection it affords from the solar wind is a tiny effect, but he hasn't yet pointed out that we do actually know the Earth's magnetic field strength over time.
So not only has Mindspawn failed to provide evidence of half-life effects of a magnitude even remotely near what he requires, the precondition he has laid down of an incredibly strong planetary magnetic field completely blocking out the solar wind has already been shown to have never happened.
As a sidenote, I remain mystified at how he can think that in the past all trees everywhere used to produce 10 times more growth rings per year than they do today, no matter where or in what climate, and they did this in complete synchrony with one another and with lake varves of all lakes, with coral growth in all oceans, with ice cores on all continents, with planetary magnetic field strengths, and with radiometric dating across many isotopes. And he apparently believes this possible in the complete absence of evidence that even one of these ever happened.
Well now mindspawn has done so. I think the balance of the evidence is that mindspawn is grasping at straws.
You deserve a nomination as master of understatement.
But I think his point is worthy of a serious response.
His point is that it is possible for an increase in the Earth's magnetic field strength to effectively insulate the planet from the solar wind to a degree that would permit a 6-order of magnitude increase in an effect currently measured at ±.001.
That's ridiculous. I think he deserves a serious response, but that's because we want to behave scientifically and not because he has raised any serious scientific questions.