From: Michael Roberts (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Mon Mar 17 2003 - 10:40:56 EST
You forgot to mention one thing about Barnes magnetic field.
Barnes took the data from c1835 which shows that aspect of the magnetic field has been declining. However Barnes left out the first reading from c1831 which was lower than the second of c1835. It was on the data he cited so i presume he ignored as it was inconvenient. Naughty Boy!! So he was wrong (Ken Ham would prefer to say Fraudulent) to do this .
On the salt, it is useful as we need to take every creationist argument with a pinch of salt. This probably represents the disappearance of the salt.
The Magnetic Earth
We all know that the earth has a magnetic field around it. When I was an Air Force navigator, we relied on "magnetic north" for compass bearings. The magnetic north pole differs from true north by varying degrees depending on where you are on the earth's surface since they are not located at the same place.
The point young-earth creationists make is that the magnetic field is decaying, getting weaker. This implies that in the past it was stronger. If we could go back in time, we would see an increasingly stronger magnetic field.
According to their statistics, 10,000 years ago the earth's magnetic field would have been "as strong as the magnetic field in a magnetic star." "Surely our earth never had a magnetic field stronger than a star," they say. "That would limit the age of the earth to 10,000 years..."
Their supporting evidence comes from young-earth advocate, Dr. Thomas Barnes. In 1973, he took 150 years worth of data showing a gradual decay in the magnetic field. Barnes then plotted an exponential curve to the data points. The Barnes curve showed the magnetic field to be not just decreasing, but decreasing at an increasing rate. He then took his 150 years worth of data and extrapolated it to 20,000 BC! Barnes published the results, but not the data.
Dr. S. G. Brush did publish the data to which he plotted a conventional straight line through the data points. The difference this made is that the same magnetic strength Barnes achieved at 20,000 BC with his curve, took over 100 million years with a straight line. In essence, Barnes "cooked" the original data to concoct a result compatible with his beliefs.
Miscalculating the rate of magnetic decay was only part of the error. What we find in reality is that the earth's magnetic field has not decayed nonstop for billions of years. It has fluctuated through time in sine wave fashion. Core samples of igneous rocks taken from the earth's surface show that the earth's magnetic field has gone through numerous reversals, swapping magnetic north and south poles periodically throughout the earth's long past.
Notice in the three previous examples that creation "scientists" will use strictly uniformitarian principles to support their claims. They take a rate, extrapolate that rate into the past, and then deduce that the resultant figure cannot possibly be true, and therefore, the earth must be young.
Now, note what they say about geologists' methods. In The Genesis Record, Henry Morris makes a point about the flood ordering the fossil sequence found in sedimentary rocks. He then says:
Man's perverse and depraved nature has somehow
distorted both into a system of evolution and uniformity.
"Uniformity" can be defined as a projected continuity. It is the assumption that the rates and processes we see today are the same as in the past. This is simply the most conservative stance you could take. The alternative is to assume that something (who knows what?) caused the rates or processes to change. Since we would not know whether the rates or processes changed up or down, the "no change" assumption is as middle-of-the-road as you can get.
The precautions with taking a uniformitarian approach are that you must have a considerable number of established data points, and that you not try to extrapolate too far. For example, on one day in a particular city the maximum temperature was 72 degrees Fahrenheit, the next day it was 67 degrees. An erroneous uniformitarian assumption would project that a year from now we will be in another ice age, or that last year we were living in an inferno.
The important thing to remember, though, is that what makes uniformity inherently good or bad, from a young earth creationist's point of view, is directly dependent on who uses it. If they use it - it's good; if evolutionists use it - it's bad!
Where is the Salt?
Another young-earth argument is that not enough salt or minerals are in the bottom of the oceans. Here young-earth creationists base their assumptions on the supposition that if the earth was old, oceans would be 4.6 billion year-old stagnant basins. They ignore the universally-accepted documentation of sea floor spreading and plate tectonics that depict the earth as a vibrant and living surface.
In Science Held Hostage, Van Till makes this point:
"In 1954 Goldschmidt provided data and discussion supporting
the conclusion that the dissolved material in ocean water is in
an equilibrium state, being added and removed at equal rates.
Chemical Oceanography, published in 1965 and revised in 1975,
includes extensive discussions of the processes by which
elements are removed from ocean water, although those parts
of the work appear to have been disregarded by the young-earth
advocates who quote from this book in Scientific Creationism
Dick Fischer - Genesis Proclaimed Association
Finding Harmony in Bible, Science, and History
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