Re: Redrawing Lines Without Viagra

Dick Fischer (
Sun, 21 Jun 1998 11:57:57 -0400

Hi Glenn, you wrote:

>Dick Fischer wrote:

>>I take all these dates with a grain of salt. I'm not sure it has
>>anything to do with it, or even if there was an impact. But that
>>date is only 93 years away from the archaeological date of 2900 BC
>>for the flood which I also take with a grain of salt.

>So when the data doesn't really support your view, it is to be taken with a
>grain of salt? Exactly how is that different than what young-earth
>creationists do? When the data doesn't support them, they also take the
>scientific data with a grain of salt. They end up taking ALL science with a
>grain of salt. And as you said, at some point we must explain the evidence
>(except when we take it with a grain of salt????).

Had I believed that the Cambrian Period was 570 million years ago as it
said in the Smithsonian Institute when I was writing my book, I would
have been wrong. It has been recalibrated to 530 million. There went
40 million years just like that. The age of the universe is estimated
at 15 billion years, but shortly before I went to press new data was
released from the Hubble Space Telescope that pointed toward a
younger date, so I went with 12 billion years. Hey, what's 3 billion
years among friends? We just discovered neutrinos have weight. So
back to the drawing boards for astrophysicists.

We are in the area of likelihoods and probabilities. You live with that
every day. Every time a new well is set down to drill oil there is
some degree of chance that it will be a dry hole. You geologists try
to improve the odds. How often can you guarantee that a well will
hit paydirt and be profitable?

The point I am trying to make is that you seem to be seeking a certainty
which doesn't exist. How much data do you have outside of your Bible
that there was a resurrection? And yet if there wasn't we have just
another fallible religion.

The archaeologists that dated the flood layers in the 1920's and 1930's
used sedimentation rates. Educated guesses. No volcanic ash to permit
more accurate dating methods, no index fossils. So how accurate do I
think they were? I have no idea. 2900 BC is just a number. What the
error bars would be on that no one knows.

There appears to have been volcanic activity that had a world-wide
impact at about 3150 BC. What are the error bars on that? I would
assume that they would be narrower than the margin of error for the
Mesopotamian archaeologists. But my guess is that there is enough
margin of error for both to allow for overlap and causation. That's
as far as I push the data.

Don't forget, the flood stories in that region are so similar
to the Genesis account that there is very little room to believe
they are not related. That means a local flood in recent times.

>You are doing exactly what the young-earthers do in
>rejecting science if it doesn't fit the preconceived theological position.

There you go again. I believe in shared common ancestry because that's
where the genetic data lies. I pay I high theological price for that.
But that doesn't mean I couldn't be wrong. Someone might come along
who can explain the genetic data that would permit humans to have

no animal ancestors. Unlikely, but possible, in my estimation. So
I run with the data and evidence. YEC's defy data and evidence.

>>An event that happened 5,000 years ago, if we can date it within 150 years,
>>that's not too shabby in my estimation. Bible scholars can't decide on the
>>date of the Exodus within 150 years!

>But this does not allow us to then grab anything that is close and say
>"HEY, this supports my view". A 150 year error would allow me to say that
>the Atomic bomb won the Civil war for the North! A hundred and fify year
>error would allow me to say that Mount Pinatubo erupted and caused the
>collapse of the Austro-Hungarian Empire!

No, Glenn. Volcanic activity and meteor/comet impacts have direct effects
on climatology. The dinosaurs died out due to climatic change caused
by meteor impact 65 million years ago. (Until that date gets recalibrated.)

>>>Yes there is a volcanic event at 3150 BC. That is clear from the Camp
>>>Century Ice Core and other cores. (see C. U. Hammer, et al, "Greenland Ice
>>>Sheet Evidence of Post-Glacial Volcanism and its climatiec Impact" Nature,
>>>1980, p. 231)

>>Hey, a point for the good guys!

>No, because it has nothing to do with Mesopotamia and does your theory no
>good. You have no idea where that volcano was.

Data taken from ice cores extracted in the Arctic regions don't sample what
happened in the Arctic. They sample atmospheric changes in general. You
say "it has nothing to do with Mesopotamia." You don't know that unless
you know where it was and can prove that it was so far removed that it
couldn't have had any effect.

>By the way, I got Blunier et al Natue 374:pp 46-49 today. Yesterday you
>said that the lowest methane level in the atmosphere occurred in 5200 BP or
>so. it does, but it is the end of a long downward trend in methane levels
>tha began in 10,000 BP with a major drop around 8000 BP. with a continued
>gradual drop until around 5200 BP. Then the methane level gradually
>increases until today. Exactly how does methane play into a Mesopotamian

Shows a general climatological change at an identifiable point in time.
What caused the reversal? What were the effects on the earth at that

>I also got in today the Palaeo article on Lake Van Turkey. If you are
>using the sediment deposition rates as a proxy for a lake level rise why
>did you ignore the even bigger SDR change that occurred at 12000 years BP.

There is no evidence of any settlements in Southern Mesopotamia prior to
4800 BC. Archaeologists dug no deeper than they were able to find
artifacts. They weren't looking for flood layers. If there was also
a massive flood at 10,000 BC there weren't any settlers to suffer from

>>>I was born in April 1950. North Korea invaded South Korea in June 1950.
>>>Am I responsible for the Korean war?

>>Sorry, I need more data.

>So why don't you need more data in the case of methane in the atmosphere or
>sedimentation rates?

You don't get it. Concerning all the patriarchs, all the cities and rivers
named in Genesis, all the cultural surroundings described in the first eleven
chapters; everything fits in an historical time frame from 7,000 years ago
to 4,000 years ago in Southern Mesopotamia because the patriarchs correlate
to some degree with the Sumerian king lists, because all the cities - even
the city Cain built - can be found in that region, because the flood stories
are obviously related, because that region always flooded until they fixed
it in the 1960's, because the flood date correlates roughly to volcanic
activity, because they built ziggurats in all the major cities to survive
those floods just as described in Genesis 11. And more. It is the totality
of evidence that makes the case.

>In what way is the climate of Santa Barbara 'germane' to a flood in

It appears that this volcanic activity may have had a world-wide impact
that included many more regions of the earth than just Southern
Mesopotamia. There is world-wide evidence of some geologic event at
a time frame that roughly correlates to the Genesis flood.

>I wrote a guy at the university of chicago today and he promised to point
>me to Akkadian skeletons. Maybe Monday maybe tomorrow.

Glenn, they've never found Accad, let alone excavated it. We only know
of the city's existence from the literature. Southern Mesopotamia was
occupied by Ubaidans before the Accadians came into being, and are dated
before 3500 BC. Sumer was overrun by Gutians and Elamites, which were
ancient Persians, around 2000 BC. So there is a slender window where we
could say that any skeletal remains were purely Accadian (Akkadian is the
German spelling you seem to prefer). Still, if there is a 200 year-old
skeleton laying around somewhere in Chicago you owe me an apology.

There is another way, however. The y chromosome gene of Ashkenazi Jews
should have less divergence than the general population would that are
not of Adamic descent.

Or, let's go to Iraq and do some digging. I can't think of anyone that
would be more fun to be around.

Dick Fischer, The Origins Solution -
"The answer we should have known about 150 years ago."