pollen test of Flood geology

Arthur V. Chadwick (chadwicka@swac.edu)
Mon, 08 Sep 1997 17:06:25 -0700

Paul writes:

>Under the Flood hypothesis, then, we would expect to see all sedimentary
>rocks to contain a whole range of species of pollen. Moreover, this would
>the the NORMAL observation across all locations, by all palynologists of
>all nations and all religions.

What "flood hypothesis" is this? It seems to me you would need to start
with a very detailed model to even begin to predict what we would expect.
We are at least a generation premature, because at this point I am not
aware of anyone with sufficient detail about the paleogeography and ecology
of the preflood world or the sedimentological processes of the flood itself
to be able to predict what one might or might not expect to see in the
grand experiment.
There are only a handful of committed practicing scientists who are even
looking at the possibility, and to my knowledge they could not put forth a
model that would allow the kind of prediction you are trying to make.
>What all these palynologists do find, as summarized by our resident
>experts, is consistent with the long time-scale of strong stratification.

Naturally. Since that is the only model being considered, one would expect
it to be consistent with a model that generall gets away with predicting
that things should be just the way they are found to be.

>There is apparently one exception: Lammerts and Burdick have reported
>finding recent pollen in ancient rocks. However, these researchers happen
>to be young-earth creationists -- very committed ones -- and their findings
>support that view conveniently. Their small amount of data could have been
>contaminated. Of course, the rest of the world may be biased against the
>young-earth position, and so they (the rest of the world) conspired not to
>report such observations. I am not a palynologist, but I am enough of a
>scientist to know better than that.

I am a creationist who spent several very frustrating years trying to
reproduce Burdicks work. In the end I was able to conclude that his report
was due to sample contamination with modern palynomorphs, a conclusion that
was not hard to reach given the source rocks he was using and the condition
of the spores and pollen. I published these results in a couple of
different venues. Don't make the mistake of assuming because someone has a
particular view of earth history, he or she is incapable of sound judgment
as a corollary. This would assure us that an evolutionary worldview could
never be challenged from within.
>Unless some very large amount of counterevidence is reported -- by a wide
>variety of researchers, of different nations and different religions -- I
>must conclude that the young-earth Flood geology hypothesis is not
>consistent with the evidence.

It seems to me that you would have to first elaborate a flood geology
hypothesis detailed enough to be able to generate such predictions. In
the second place you should be aware that there were many reports in
Science and Nature (ten or more papers) several decades ago of modern type
pollen and spores ("Eocene") from the Cambrian strata of Punjab, by people
of a variety of religions and ethnicities. A cadre of western geologists
even went to investigate the situation and concluded that the strata from
which Singh and others were getting pollen were indeed Cambrian. The
Indian investigators insisted that they were Eocene based on the pollen and
spores. The case has been settled by declaring the problem intractible and
off limits to further exploration by the Indian paleobotanists.