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CEH: Evaluating the Chicxulub Impact Dinosaur Extinction Hypothesis

CEH: Evaluating the Chicxulub Impact Dinosaur Extinction Hypothesis | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it

David Coppedge at Creation-Evolution Headlines reports on the latest iteration of the Chicxulub impact theory and the K-T boundary. 

 

This has bothered me for some time, because the whole discussion illustrates what I have come to see as a major logical failing in modern stratigraphic interpretation, especially in regard to the interpretative principle that the present is the key to the past.

 

In a nutshell, the idea that flat, horizontal contacts between thick, areally-widespread formations can be analogized to the present time, is unrealistic because of the ubiquity of erosion.

 

The above image illustrates the point quite nicely.  Much work has been done to support the theory that the iridium layer above the Hell Creek formation (essentially at the position of the red line above) marks the K-T boundary.  Thus, fossils buried below the boundary are Cretaceous, and those above are Tertiary.

 

But now look at the contrast between the current topography and the geometry of the outcrop--could it be more stark? 

 

The main point is that EROSION is the dominant process of the present.  Nowhere in historical time do we find thick subaerial layers being deposited and left undisturbed long enough to accumulate the thickness and areal extent of the Hell Creek and its other equivalents, such as the Lance Formation (see here for an map: www.und.nodak.edu/instruct/jhartman/Research/PDFs/2002-117-Johnson%20et%20al%20sp361.pdf)

 

The connection with the K-T border is that conditions must have been extremely unique for the ash that marks the border to fall on horizontal, uniform rock layers and then remain undisturbed by erosion for the amount of time required by current interpretations for the accumulation of both the overlying and underlying horizontal layers. 

 

Think about it:  where are the widespread, thin horizontal ash layers from Mt. St. Helens?

 

Coppedge reports on the slap in the face that the cometary extinction theory had for uniformitarianism:

 

"'It flew in the face of the position that geologists and paleontologists at the time had for gradual explanations for everything that happened in the Earth’s past, a position that went by the name of uniformitarianism,' said Walter Alvarez. 'The notion that this mass extinction was caused by an impact, or even the notion that there was a sudden mass extinction, raised a lot of dispute at the time, and people strongly challenged the idea.'"

 

However, you can't have it both ways. If the Fort Union and Hell Creek formations were laid down slowly, uniformitarianism predicts that they should have been heavily eroded.  If they were laid down quickly, then the fossils they contain can't be representative of different geologic time periods.

 

Draping actualism over uniformitarianism results in a useless predictive paradigm, because anything is possible, and nothing is improbable. 

 

Unless it allows people to entertain the hypothesis of a catastrophic global marine transgression.  I'm not holding my breath.

 

Image credit: http://geologyblues.blogspot.com/2010/05/accretionary-wedge.html

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Conformable Contacts
Notes from the intersection of faith, reason and geology
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Raison d'etre

Raison d'etre | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it

In geological terms, a contact is the place where two different types of rocks come together. This ezine is a place to find content from my favorite web sources on the the creation-evolution issue, with a focus on the subject of geology.  Just as the layers of a rock can be composed of many different materials, so my sources often differ in their assumptions and in their views on the issue, but their common intersection is the belief that this is an important subject.

 

(Image source:  Glyn Baker, http://www.geograph.org.uk/reuse.php?id=167895)

YEC Geo's insight:

While my interests are wide-ranging, as even a cursory glance at this site will show,  a subject of great personal interest to me is the preservation of biological material in fossils presumed tens to hundreds of millions of years old.  In my view, the increasing pace of discovery of such material is one of the strongest evidences in support of a young age for the earth.

 

Below is a continuously updated archive of articles I've found on the subject:

 

Jurassic squid ink: http://sco.lt/7nbAVV

550 million year old tube worms: http://sco.lt/8xwAJl, http://sco.lt/4xoX6v

23 million year old lizard:  http://sco.lt/5qDwpt

46 million year old mosquito: http://sco.lt/8AQAuf

46 million year old beetle scales: http://sco.lt/68OHA1

70 million year old hadrosaur skin: http://sco.lt/8SaVEn, http://sco.lt/9L5UDB

160 year old mollusk melanin:  http://sco.lt/6QYbU9

Brian Thomas’ overviews:  http://sco.lt/92v9t3, http://sco.lt/5H0JSj

Archaeopteryx feather:  http://sco.lt/70tG8P

190-197 million year old sauropod egg proteins: http://sco.lt/7J3aSX

250 million year old coloration on trilobites: http://sco.lt/4xixrV

Cretaceous triceratops horn: http://sco.lt/6a9nlZ, http://sco.lt/5FtIBd

Bachelor’s thesis on fossil pigments: http://sco.lt/5mbfv7

350 million year old crinoids & 417 million year old eurypterid chitin: http://sco.lt/5Y3cVl

C-14 in dinosaur bones, a presentation at an AGU-AOGS conference that was later stricken from the conference records:  http://sco.lt/5OIu25

Soft tissue overview from Answers in Genesis: http://sco.lt/666kpl

Dr. Mary Schweitzer’s dinosaur tissue research: http://sco.lt/5VIvnl

Preserved coloration in 70 million year old mammal teeth: http://sco.lt/5H0JSj

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Geophysicists Concerned as Oklahoma's Earthquake Total Surpasses California's

Geophysicists Concerned as Oklahoma's Earthquake Total Surpasses California's | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it
Frequent, rumbling tremors beneath the earth may be a common occurrence in California, but Oklahoma has now surpassed the state in the number of earthquakes felt this year—a trend that is surprising geophysicists and raising concern.
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Slaying yesterday's dragons

Slaying yesterday's dragons | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it

"How do you talk to a science buff who has left empirical science and whose mind is full of philosophical speculation? ... It is as if they are suddenly admitting to a ‘Darwin of the Gaps’ model of evolution while we creationists stick to empirical science, and I find this ironic, even oddly humorous."

YEC Geo's insight:

Thought-provoking article by biologist Rob Carter, on the growing rejection of the neo-Darwinian synthesis by a younger generation of scientists, and its re-formulation into a more nebulous, philosophical concept.

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Fossil jellyfish from the Pilbara, Western Australia

Fossil jellyfish from the Pilbara, Western Australia | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it
'Medusoid impressions' of the Dales Gorge Member exposed at Wittenoom in the Pilbara are indeed fossil jellyfish.
YEC Geo's insight:

The significance of the find:

 

" Obviously, if these ‘medusoid impressions’ are indeed genuine fossil jellyfish, it would mean that fully functioning jellyfish and their planktonic foods existed nearly 2 Ga before the previously oldest arbitrarily evolutionary dated jellyfish fossils."

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Inflation Concocted to Avoid a Young, Perfect Universe

Inflation Concocted to Avoid a Young, Perfect Universe | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it

"Alan Guth concocted inflation theory in 1980 to avoid evidence for a 10,000-year-old universe. For his wild, evidence-free speculation, he may win a Nobel Prize. ... This article reveals that the evidence supported creation when Guth made up his story, and it still does."

YEC Geo's insight:

Thought-provoking.  I never knew that the inventor of inflation theory was trying to work around implications that the universe appeared to be only about 10,000 years old, but that's what the interview referenced here certainly implies.

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The race to stop Las Vegas from running dry

The race to stop Las Vegas from running dry | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it

"Outside Las Vegas’s Bellagio hotel tourists gasp in amazement as fountains shoot 500ft into the air, performing a spectacular dance in time to the music of Frank Sinatra.

 

Gondolas ferry honeymooners around canals modelled on those of Venice, Roman-themed swimming pools stretch for acres, and thousands of sprinklers keep golf courses lush in the middle of the desert.

 

But, as with many things in Sin City, the apparently endless supply of water is an illusion. America’s most decadent destination has been engaged in a potentially catastrophic gamble with nature and now, 14 years into a devastating drought, it is on the verge of losing it all."

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Diamond with Ringwoodite Reveals Water Deep in Earth’s Mantle

Diamond with Ringwoodite Reveals Water Deep in Earth’s Mantle | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it
Discovery inside a diamond in the rough shows Jules Verne wasn’t that far off when he wrote about a hidden ocean in Journey to the Centre of the Earth.
YEC Geo's insight:

More speculation upon the recent discovery of naturally formed ringwoodite, and its implications for the Flood model.  Includes information I hadn't seen before, for example, that other natural forms of ringwoodite may have been missed before because research teams usually polish their diamond discards during analysis, which would transform any existing ringwoodite into another form.  Ah, serendipity, the mother of scientific discovery!

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Google Earth view of Arizona earth fissures

Google Earth view of Arizona earth fissures | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it

"Earth fissures typically form due to basin subsidence in areas of rapid groundwater withdrawal.  Fissures have formed in Maricopa, Pinal, Pima, and Santa Cruz counties in Arizona, but also occur in California, Texas, Mexico, and other areas with similar conditions. "

YEC Geo's insight:

Another cool use for Google Earth, courtesy of the Arizona Geologic Survey--is my house foundation going to crack because the groundwater is getting used up?

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Did Angkor really see a dinosaur?

Did Angkor really see a dinosaur? | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it

"The objections of skeptics that the Angkor temple ‘stegosaur’ carving does not represent a dinosaur are easily rebutted."

YEC Geo's insight:

I actually found the comment by Patrick G. in the combox to be the most convincing argument for the authenticity of a stegosaur representation.

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Skybox: Google Maps goes real-time – but would you want a spy in the sky staring into your letter box?

Skybox: Google Maps goes real-time – but would you want a spy in the sky staring into your letter box? | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it

"Anyone who has played around on current versions of Google Earth will have flicked back the scroll wheel on their mouse, casually zooming out all the way to watch the Earth spinning through space, as real-time as we’d ever need or want for something so apparently unchanging. But distance erases detail and the trip back down to the surface of Google Earth takes users through a patchwork of old and new imagery, stitched together from a variety of sources.

 

And although these pictures may seem detailed enough to us, they’re actually constrained by limits set by the US government. At least, they were until this month."

YEC Geo's insight:

What could you do with real-time remote sensing imagery?

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A Traveler in Canyonlands National Park

A Traveler in Canyonlands National Park | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it
It’s hot here. Welcome to the beginning of summer in the Southwest. Two days ago it was raining and near freezing and I was complaining about it at Mesa Verde and now it’s sweat time. But those rains have turned the Needles District of Canyonlands National Park into a veritable flower garden. Everywhere I look there are blooms.
YEC Geo's insight:

Interesting travelogue,  including information about the creation of the park, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year.  Apparently, the area was slated for another megadam on the scale of Glen Canyon, until the then-Secreatary of the Interior decided it would better serve the public as a National Park.

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Exxon staff quit Iraq amid spiraling violence

Exxon staff quit Iraq amid spiraling violence | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it

"The head of Iraq's state-run South Oil Company said on Wednesday that ExxonMobil has carried out a "major evacuation" of their staff."

YEC Geo's insight:

Follow the money.  Exxon is the largest company in the world, and I trust their political instincts more than those of politicians or journalists.  

 

This is not good.

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Young age interpretation of volcanic regions of Victoria, Australia

Young age interpretation of volcanic regions of Victoria, Australia | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it

"If you Google volcanism in Victoria, or look at a geological map of the area, you will discover there are two stages of volcanism. "

YEC Geo's insight:

Tas Walker presents a different interpretation of the geologic data.

 

Especially interesting because of the paper he cites here, which relates in detail the often conflicting results of radiometric dating on the volcanics--the computed ages can differ by hundreds of thousands of years:

 

www.hamilton-field-naturalists-club-victoria.org.au/images/pdf/march2014/VolcAgesKG.pdf

 

 

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Finding Dinosaurs in Google Earth

Finding Dinosaurs in Google Earth | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it

"McLain said that other paleontologists have approached him to discuss starting databases for other ancient beasts, like the marine plesiosaur. He would like to create a database of dinosaur footprints and trackways, as a way to get a broader geographical view of dino travel."

YEC Geo's insight:

Yes!  A database of dino footprints would be fantastic.

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Flood / Ice Age Research

Flood / Ice Age Research | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it

"...So, my interest in the creation/evolution issue grew from a curiosity to eventually a passion. I, however, have not been led to bash evolution, which is easy to do, instead I feel called to solve earth science problems that are presented to creationists by evolutionists. "

YEC Geo's insight:

Probably the most empirically-based defense available for the reality of a catastrophic global marine transgression--in other words, a worldwide flood.  Mike Oard has been studying this subject for over 40 years, and the amount of data that he has arrayed in support of the Flood model is impressive.

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Geological Legacies of the Paris Basin: Part II – Subterranean Limestone Quarries and Catacombs of Paris

Geological Legacies of the Paris Basin: Part II – Subterranean Limestone Quarries and Catacombs of Paris | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it

"Paris is a city of layers – both above ground and below. Its underground has many new additions, while others are vestiges of the past, often lost and forgotten. Some are accessible to the public, and others have been sealed for an eternity. "

YEC Geo's insight:

Another lovely geo-travelogue from the blogger at Written in Stone.

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The authors of the claimed biggest astrophysics discovery of the century admit they may have been wrong

The authors of the claimed biggest astrophysics discovery of the century admit they may have been wrong | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it
Why have astrophysicists changed their minds over latest big-bang announcement?
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Creeping Up on Unsuspecting Shores: The Great Lakes, in a Welcome Turnaround

Creeping Up on Unsuspecting Shores: The Great Lakes, in a Welcome Turnaround | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it
Scientists attribute the resurgence of water levels to an unusually cold winter that limited evaporation as well as heavy precipitation in the winter and spring.
YEC Geo's insight:

At least there's some compensation for a hellacious winter.

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Post-Flood recovery

Post-Flood recovery | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it
How did the earth recover from salt on the continents and volcanic ash in the atmosphere?
YEC Geo's insight:

Mike Oard and Tas Walker respond to two interesting questions about a post-Flood world.

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Genesis confirmed in clay

Genesis confirmed in clay | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it

"Cooper presents compelling evidence that the modernists’ claim, that the Babylonian Flood legend is the source of all other Flood legends, is false (pp. 386–396). For example, in the last decade of the 19th century, an archaeological dig by the University of Pennsylvania unearthed a tablet fragment from the ancient Babylonian city of Nippur (figure 1). It contains the Flood narrative and, most significantly, is dated to at least 2005 BC—centuries older than the original text of the Gilgamesh epic. It is written in Semitic Babylonian and is therefore closely related to biblical Hebrew.

 

Indeed, its phraseology is so close to the Genesis text that its translator, Professor H.V. Hilprecht, wrote:

“… its significance is further enhanced by the fact that in most important details it agrees with the biblical version of the deluge in a very remarkable manner—much more so than any other cuneiform version previously known” (p. 392).

 

Unlike the many other Flood stories, it doesn’t depart from the Genesis account in any detail and its clear monotheistic theme is additional evidence that it predates all Flood legends of Babylonian origin. It is arguably one of the most precious discoveries ever for those who seek to defend the Bible from the liberal onslaught, and makes clear that the Epic of Gilgamesh is more reasonably seen to be an independent witness to the truth of the Flood as recorded in the Bible."

YEC Geo's insight:

I've often heard it said that the Flood story in Genesis is derived from the Babylonian "Epic of Gilgamesh."  British historian Bill Cooper has written a book documenting evidence to the contrary.

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Cyclostratigraphy: Another Round of Circular Reasoning?

Cyclostratigraphy: Another Round of Circular Reasoning? | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it

"Cyclostratigraphy is just as circular in its reasoning as its older brother biostratigraphy. No wonder Rodríguez-Tovar wrote in his review article,

 

'The debate persists, especially surrounding Bennett's second and third tiers [of evolution] and the incidence of orbital forcing determining diverse and complex evolutionary responses, including stasis, speciation, and extinction phenomena in Quaternary plant communities and origination, extinction, and turnover in mammalian species. At the root of the debate lie two key issues: the resolution of the fossil record and the absence of absolute timescales.' "

YEC Geo's insight:

Yes, yes, and a thousand times yes.  The thought that thin layers of sediment can be correlated to small variations of sunlight, all over the world and over hundreds of thousands of years is just mind-boggling in its confidence in the model of continuous deposition.

 

See this amazing article by the noted stratigrapher Andrew Miall on the uncertainty of assuming continuity in stratal succession: https://duckduckgo.com/l/?kh=-1&uddg=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.es.utoronto.ca%2FMembers%2Fmiall%2Fmiall_bib%2Fpdfs%2FMiall2012.pdf

 

Miall is one of the top researchers in his field.  If he sees many "breaks" in continuity in strata in the field, I don't see how you can ever reasonably correlate strata to subtle changes in sunlight.

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Research Suggests Former Mega-Floods On The Colorado River - What Does It Mean For Glen Canyon Dam?

Research Suggests Former Mega-Floods On The Colorado River - What Does It Mean For Glen Canyon Dam? | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it

"Work done by Dr. Victor Baker at the University of Arizona, uncovered deposits of silt and driftwood located high up the bank along a stretch of river known as the "Moab daily," about 8 miles upstream from town. Here they found evidence for 44 large floods occurring in the last 2,000+ years. These were not merely high water year floods, but were exceptionally large floods, that likely resulted from rain on snow events."

YEC Geo's insight:

I'd be interested to know the height above river level of those driftwood deposits.

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3 birds in a dinosaur

3 birds in a dinosaur | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it

"How did this fossil, and many other fossils at Liaoning similarly “exquisitely preserved”, with even “abdominal contents in exquisite detail” being preserved, come to be this way?"

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Geological Field Work – When Is It Justified?

Geological Field Work – When Is It Justified? | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it

"Most geologists are happiest when they are furthest away from the office, the phone, and management. Fieldwork, although essential for any exploration program, is also expensive, and potentially dangerous. So what are the questions that should be asked before an expedition is mounted, particularly into a remote area?"

YEC Geo's insight:

There really is a wide divide in the profession between academic and industry geologists.  From the very interesting site, "Geology for Investors," comes this peek into the life of a mining geologist. 

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Beware of Misinterpreting Water Claims

Beware of Misinterpreting Water Claims | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it
A claim of vast reservoirs of water deep in the earth is based on indirect evidence, and likely has little or nothing to do with surface water or floods.
YEC Geo's insight:

David Coppedge offers a cautionary tale. 

 

Sample:

 

"It’s important not to read headlines and jump to conclusions.  Headlines are often more flamboyant than the data.  Unless a creation geologist can explain how the water could have become available to the surface in liquid form, it likely has nothing to do with a global flood."

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Bacteria could restore uranium mining aquifers

Bacteria could restore uranium mining aquifers | Conformable Contacts | Scoop.it

"Research in UW laboratories has shown that stimulating growth of native bacteria could be a more effective way to remediate aquifers tapped by in-situ leach uranium mining, the technique used in the vast majority of Wyoming’s existing and planned uranium operations. If those findings are confirmed in the field, uranium companies could save significantly in groundwater restoration costs while achieving better results."

YEC Geo's insight:

Mother Nature to the rescue?

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