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Author Topic:   Problems with Radiometric Dating?
Lili
Junior Member (Idle past 4251 days)
Posts: 11
Joined: 06-24-2007


Message 1 of 46 (438288)
12-03-2007 7:09 PM


I found an article that argues, among other things, that radiometric dating methods are not concordant and dates that are in disagreement with other data are not published. Some of the quotes in the article are from non-creationist journals. Are the following claims true?

DISSENTERS EJECTED, R. L. Mauger, East Carolina Univ., "In general, dates in the 'correct ball park' are assumed to be correct and are published, but those in disagreement with other data are seldom published nor or the discrepancies fully explained.", Contributions To Geology, Vol.15 (1): 17

DIFFERENT AGES FROM ONE ROCK, Joan C. Engels, "It is now well known that K-Ar ages obtained from different minerals in a single rock may be strikingly discordant." Journal of Geology,Vol.79, p.609

RECENT LAVA @ 22M, C.S.Nobel & J.J.Naughton, Hawaiian Inst. of Geophysics, "The radiogenic argon and helium contents of three basalts erupted into the deep ocean from an active volcano (Kilauea) have been measured. Ages calculated from these measurements increase with sample depth up to 22 million years for lavas deduced to be recent. ...these lavas are very young, probably less than 200 years old. The samples, in fact, may be very recent...", Science, Vol.162, p.265

PRECISION DATING? ROGER LEWIN, Ed. Research News, Science, “The calculated age was quickly refined to be 2.61 ± 0.26 million years, which, to anthropologist unfamiliar with the procedures of radiometric dating, has a ring of comforting precision about it. ...41 separate age determinations... which varied between 223 million and 0.91 million years ...after the first determination they never again obtained 2.61 from their experiments.” BONES OF CONTENTION, p.194

ARBITRARY, A. HAYATSU, Dept. of Geophysics, U. of Western Ont., "In conventional interpretation of K-Ar age data, it is common to discard ages which are substantially too high or too low compared with the rest of the group or with other available data such as the geological time scale. The discrepancies between the rejected and the accepted are arbitrarily attributed to excess or loss of argon." Canadian Journal Of Earth Science, 16:974.

"THE IMPERFECT ART OF ESTIMATING GEOLOGICAL TIME" BATES MCKEE, U. of Washington, “If the laboratory results contradict the field evidence, the geologist assumes that there is something wrong with the machine date. To put it another way, ‘good’ dates are those that agree with the field data. ...the geologist has more faith in the fossil evidence than in a machine date, and this reflects some of the uncertainties of radiometric determinations and the interpretation of results.” CASCADIA, The Geological Evolution Of The Pacific Northwest, p.25, 27

"C14 AGES IN ERROR", ROBERT E. LEE, "The troubles of the radiocarbon dating method are undeniably deep and serious. Despite 35 years of technological refinement and better under-standing, the underlying assumptions have been strongly challenged.... It should be no surprise, then, that fully half of the dates are rejected. The wonder is, surely, that the remaining half come out to be accepted. There are gross discrepancies, the chronology is uneven and relative, and the accepted dates are actually selected dates." Anthropological Journal of Canada, Vol. 19, no. 3, 1981, p.9

FUNDAMENTAL ASSUMPTION, Report on C14 Conference (145 International Scientists), Science, Vol. 150, p. 1490. "Throughout the conference emphasis was placed on the fact that laboratories do not measure ages, they measure sample activities. The connection between activity and age is made through a set of assumptions. ...one of the main assumptions of C14 dating is that the atmospheric radiocarbon level has held steady over the age-range to which the method applies."

C14 INCREASING ! H. E. Suess, UCLA, "Symposium Organized By International Atomic Energy Authority, ...presented the latest determinations...as adduced from the current activity of dendrochronologically dated growth rings of the Californian bristle cone pine. ...The carbon14 concentration increases rather steadily during this time. These results confirm the change in carbon14 concentration.... and indicate that the concentration increases..." Science, Vol.157, p.726


Replies to this message:
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AdminNosy
Administrator
Posts: 4754
From: Vancouver, BC, Canada
Joined: 11-11-2003


Message 2 of 46 (438299)
12-03-2007 7:54 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Lili
12-03-2007 7:09 PM


It's going to need a bit of work.
Unfortunately, these smack of quote mining. If your source for them all was a creo site then we can predict the outcome of those that are from legitamate sources. That is, they will have left out what the article is actually saying.

To not waste people's time I think it would be better if you took a small number of these. Say the first 3 to 5 of them and looked for the quote in context. That is, the original paper.

If the original is not available online then move on to the next one.

We'll have to take what we find from the available ones and extrapolate to all of them.

One thing that one has to think of:
If these are really indicative of the state of the science there are numerous labs around the world and many 10,000 of scientist deliberately committing fraud. How likely do you think that is?

The other choice is that the creo compilers of such lists are the one committing fraud. Since we can dig up many, many documented cases of that having occured elsewhere how likely do you think that is the case?

Anyway, these are really interesting thinks to look into and if you will give a bit more meat then I am sure someone would love to get deeper into these.

Added by Edit
Just to show you why this needs a bit more digging; look at the second to last one:

FUNDAMENTAL ASSUMPTION, Report on C14 Conference (145 International Scientists), Science, Vol. 150, p. 1490. "Throughout the conference emphasis was placed on the fact that laboratories do not measure ages, they measure sample activities. The connection between activity and age is made through a set of assumptions. ...one of the main assumptions of C14 dating is that the atmospheric radiocarbon level has held steady over the age-range to which the method applies."

This is utterly false! There is no such assumption. In fact read RASDs thread here:

see Windsor castle

to see how the C14 content of the atmosphere is accounted for and how we know that it varies and by how much (less than 10%).

Edited by AdminNosy, : added a bit


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AdminCoragyps
Inactive Member


Message 3 of 46 (438300)
12-03-2007 7:58 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Lili
12-03-2007 7:09 PM


Lili, or LeeLee:

I'm putting promotion of this on hold for a bit. You may not be aware that the newest reference of any of those from Science in your list is from 1968. I was still an undergrad in that distant era, and I can assure you that chemistry, physics, and the science of radiometric dating have advanced since then. Additionally, this sort of list frequently turns out to be primarily "quote-mines" - a website called "The Evolution Cruncher" is one well-known such "mine." Snippets are dug out of real papers in these "mines," but are chosen to appear to say something very different from what the papers actually said.

Let's work on the isochron thread you openened first. Remind me if I don't get back to this one in a couple of days.

And I have access to Science back to 1880 when we dig deeper into these.


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AdminNosy
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Posts: 4754
From: Vancouver, BC, Canada
Joined: 11-11-2003


Message 4 of 46 (438303)
12-03-2007 8:01 PM
Reply to: Message 2 by AdminNosy
12-03-2007 7:54 PM


to heck with it
I'm going to promote it. People will have so much fun showing, once again, how much crea sources lie. :)

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AdminNosy
Administrator
Posts: 4754
From: Vancouver, BC, Canada
Joined: 11-11-2003


Message 5 of 46 (438304)
12-03-2007 8:01 PM


Thread moved here from the Proposed New Topics forum.

  
Coragyps
Member
Posts: 5399
From: Snyder, Texas, USA
Joined: 11-12-2002


Message 6 of 46 (438306)
12-03-2007 8:35 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Lili
12-03-2007 7:09 PM


FUNDAMENTAL ASSUMPTION, Report on C14 Conference (145 International Scientists), Science, Vol. 150, p. 1490. "Throughout the conference...."

From 1965. And the statement here is tempered at several other spots in the piece, which is an informal synopsis of a conference.

Science, Vol.162, p.265 "Ages calculated from these measurements increase with sample depth up to 22 million years for lavas deduced to be recent."

The next sentence in that abstract is "Caution is urged in applying dates from deep-ocean basalts in studies on ocean-floor spreading." This one's from 1968, as well.

Science, Vol.157, p.726 (1967) Just before the bit mined in your source, this says "It is well established that the ages obtained on the assumption of constant, initial concentrations of radiocarbon in the specimens can differ by several hundreds of years for historical and dendrochronological dates for several periods over the last 6000 years." The report goes on to talk about early (1967!!) work toward calibration to account for these known fluctuations.

Quote mines? Yup. From near-antique material, too. Whoever compiled them should be ashamed.


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jar
Member
Posts: 31523
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 3.0


Message 7 of 46 (438307)
12-03-2007 8:45 PM
Reply to: Message 6 by Coragyps
12-03-2007 8:35 PM


Quote mines? Yup. From near-antique material, too. Whoever compiled them should be ashamed.

Dr. Don Patton IIRC

Edited by jar, : appalin spallin


Aslan is not a Tame Lion

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RAZD
Member
Posts: 20156
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 3.9


Message 8 of 46 (438313)
12-03-2007 10:10 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Lili
12-03-2007 7:09 PM


Are the following claims true?

The bigger picture is what are the scientists really saying. For instance:

C14 INCREASING ! H. E. Suess, UCLA, "Symposium Organized By International Atomic Energy Authority, ...presented the latest determinations...as adduced from the current activity of dendrochronologically dated growth rings of the Californian bristle cone pine. ...The carbon14 concentration increases rather steadily during this time. These results confirm the change in carbon14 concentration.... and indicate that the concentration increases..." Science, Vol.157, p.726

This is true, but relatively trivial, with the difference being a slight correction of 14C dates to slightly older ages:

  • we already know that the proportion of atmospheric 14C to 12C varies from year. 14C is made by cosmic radiation and that varies from to year on an 11 year cycle tied to sunspots.
  • we also already know that it has been at different levels in the past, and that it is tied to climate
  • we also know that massive releases of old carbon (lower 14C/12C) into the atmosphere from methane in the sea changes the atmospheric ratio.
  • scientists are studying the changes to 14C/12C in order to better understand what causes it and to better calibrate 14C dating methods.

    See http://www.radiocarbon.org/IntCal04_TOC.pdf


    {note: image originally from http://www.cio.phys.rug.nl/HTML-docs/Verslag/97/PE-04.htm,
    image copied to a mirror site to cut down on bandwidth usage for the original site}

    That graph shows you the correlation between 14C ages and ages derived by other means, like tree rings (represented by the straight line). The gap between them is due to lower 14C/12C ratios in the past. This correlation is pretty amazing when you look at how linear the 14C data points are on the graph, the lack of scatter in the data.

    This correlation is even more amazing when you consider that the tree ring and other absolute dating is linear, while the actual 14C measurements are decreasing on an exponential curve with time, from which the 14C age is calculated by a (relatively) simple mathematical formula - ie the only reason that the data should correlate is because they measure the same thing.

    If a creationist is telling you this without explaining the information then they want you to reach false conclusions due to the missing information. They are in effect lying to you about what the evidence really shows. This is a common (dishonest) tactic of many creationists.

    See Radioactive carbon dating or Age Correlations and an Old Earth: Version 1 No 3 (formerly Part III) for more information on 14C dating accuracy.

    Now this is the second website (that I know of) that you have posted and basically asked "well what about THIS" -- a version of the Gish Gallop, and one of the reasons that debating by the use of just pasting stuff from websites is frowned on in the forum guidelines.

    So what do you think:

    (1) about the accuracy of science?

    (2) about the honesty of creationists?

    Enjoy.


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  • This message is a reply to:
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    anglagard
    Member
    Posts: 2200
    From: Socorro, New Mexico USA
    Joined: 03-18-2006


    Message 9 of 46 (438314)
    12-03-2007 10:12 PM
    Reply to: Message 7 by jar
    12-03-2007 8:45 PM


    jar writes:

    Dr. Don Patton IIRC

    Your memory is a lot better than you let on. Here is the source, with the exact same descriptions included.

    http://www.bible.ca/tracks/dp-age-science.htm

    I like the first few sentences:

    quote:
    An important message from Dr. Patton regarding these quotes:
    I use most of these quotes as handouts to provide documentation for my lecture series. They were not intended to stand alone as arguments by themselves.


    Read not to contradict and confute, not to believe and take for granted, not to find talk and discourse, but to weigh and consider - Francis Bacon

    The more we understand particular things, the more we understand God - Spinoza


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    RAZD
    Member
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    From: the other end of the sidewalk
    Joined: 03-14-2004
    Member Rating: 3.9


    Message 10 of 46 (438315)
    12-03-2007 10:16 PM
    Reply to: Message 9 by anglagard
    12-03-2007 10:12 PM


    In other words he is still passing out falsehoods? I'm SHOCKED!

    This message is a reply to:
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    anglagard
    Member
    Posts: 2200
    From: Socorro, New Mexico USA
    Joined: 03-18-2006


    Message 11 of 46 (438316)
    12-03-2007 10:29 PM
    Reply to: Message 10 by RAZD
    12-03-2007 10:16 PM


    "Dr" Don Patton
    RAZD writes:

    In other words he is still passing out falsehoods? I'm SHOCKED!

    Even his so-called PhD is fake. From http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/paluxy/degrees.html

    quote:
    Since early 1989, Don Patton, a close associate of Carl Baugh and leader of Metroplex Institute of Origins Science (MIOS) near Dallas, has claimed a Ph.D. (or "Ph.D. candidacy") in geology from Queensland Christian University in Australia.[33] However, QCU is another unaccredited school linked to Clifford Wilson. [34] When questioned about this at a recent MIOS meeting, Patton indicated that he was aware of some problems relating to QCU, and was withdrawing his Ph.D. candidacy.[35]

    However, the printed abstracts of the 1989 Bible-Science conference in Dayton, Tennessee (where Patton gave two talks) stated that he was a Ph.D. candidacy in geology, and implied that he has at least four degrees from three separate schools.[36] When I asked Patton for clarification on this during the conference, he stated that he had no degrees, but was about to receive a Ph.D. degree in geology, pending accreditation of QCU, which he assured me was "three days away."[37] Many days have since passed, and Patton still has no valid degree in geology. Nor is the accreditation of QCU imminent. Australian researcher Ian Plimer reported, "PCI, QPU, PCT, and PCGS have no formal curriculum, no classes, no research facilities, no calendar, no campus, and no academic staff....Any Ph.D. or Ph.D. candidacy at QPU by Patton is fraudulent."[38]

    With surprising boldness, Carl Baugh recently appeared on a radio talk show in Texas claiming the same degrees discussed above, plus a new "Ph.D. candidacy in paleoanthropology from Pacific College." Baugh complained that critics were now attacking his credentials and those of other fine creationists, including "Dr. Don Patton."[39]


    But of course, you and jar knew that he was a fake "Dr" already. :)

    Edited by anglagard, : oops, misspelled name


    Read not to contradict and confute, not to believe and take for granted, not to find talk and discourse, but to weigh and consider - Francis Bacon

    The more we understand particular things, the more we understand God - Spinoza


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     Message 10 by RAZD, posted 12-03-2007 10:16 PM RAZD has acknowledged this reply

        
    Lili
    Junior Member (Idle past 4251 days)
    Posts: 11
    Joined: 06-24-2007


    Message 12 of 46 (438319)
    12-03-2007 10:36 PM
    Reply to: Message 8 by RAZD
    12-03-2007 10:10 PM


    Thank you for your response. It is great that 14C dates agree so well with varves and tree rings. Also, the reason I posted links to those websites was not that I endorsed them, but that I wanted them to be debunked. I know that creationists are known to quote mine. Unfortunately, I do not have access to the journals listed in the OP right now so I am unable to tell if the quotes were used honestly.

    This message is a reply to:
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    RAZD
    Member
    Posts: 20156
    From: the other end of the sidewalk
    Joined: 03-14-2004
    Member Rating: 3.9


    Message 13 of 46 (438321)
    12-03-2007 10:52 PM
    Reply to: Message 12 by Lili
    12-03-2007 10:36 PM


    It is great that 14C dates agree so well with varves and tree rings.

    Yes, see Message 249 for another correlation, where the 14C samples came from a different environment but correlate with the 14C age in the Lake Suigetsu varves for an volcanic ash (Sakate) deposit in both areas.

    ... I do not have access to the journals listed in the OP right now ...

    This is another reason creationists use OLD (pre-internet) articles - they are hard to find on the web. Science mag lets you sign up for free (IIRC) to read (some? most?) old articles, but I don't know it they go back to the '60's.

    http://www.sciencemag.org/

    Could not access the article with my membership but this is the full citation:

    Radioactive Dating and Low-Level Counting
    V. R. Switsur
    Science 11 August 1967 157: 726-727 [DOI: 10.1126/science.157.3789.726] (in Articles)

    40 years old.

    ... so I am unable to tell if the quotes were used honestly.

    Is it from a creationist known for honesty? :laugh:

    Enjoy.

    Edited by RAZD, : added info

    Edited by RAZD, : honestly.


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    NosyNed
    Member
    Posts: 8863
    From: Canada
    Joined: 04-04-2003
    Member Rating: 5.3


    Message 14 of 46 (438323)
    12-03-2007 11:22 PM
    Reply to: Message 12 by Lili
    12-03-2007 10:36 PM


    honesty
    I am unable to tell if the quotes were used honestly.

    Well, it is hard to tell about all of them. But from experience and even those statements here that we can check out the most probably answer to that is:

    NO they are not used honestly. They are almost never used honestly. If they are used honestly they are almost always used incorrectly.

    If you want to look for an organization founded on the principle of the big lie you only have to look at the major creo organizations.

    Edited by NosyNed, : add and fix


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    Coragyps
    Member
    Posts: 5399
    From: Snyder, Texas, USA
    Joined: 11-12-2002


    Message 15 of 46 (438354)
    12-04-2007 7:58 AM
    Reply to: Message 13 by RAZD
    12-03-2007 10:52 PM


    but I don't know it they go back to the '60's.

    Back to 1880, in fact! But they are all pdf's so they are something of a pain to copy portions of - download, take to Wordpad, then get excerpts. At least I don't know a quicker way...


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