Bob Helm: We are talking about a tectonic event so violent …

Comment on Scientists and the Temptation to Bias Results by pauluc.

Bob Helm: We are talking about a tectonic event so violent that it split the single antediluvian supercontinent up into today’s seven continents. How could a tectonic event of that magnitude fail to deposit 5000 feet of sediment? It boggles my mind that you find that astonishing!

I am not sure you appreciated my point. I appreciate that a flash flood can deposit a lot of sediment. My concern is that Leonard brand has shown that the coconino layers whether eolian or underwater sediment have tracks made by moving animals. Tell me how tracks could be made in a tectonic event with the violence you describe such that 13 feet of sedement would have to be deposited in layers every day? Please tell me where you can find deposition in flash flooding with preservation in the sediment. Track requires slow deposition of the sediment to allow for preservation of the tracks without disturbance. What is astonishing that you would expect track preservation and sedimentation at a rate of 13 feet a day. How do you imagine any well formed layering of sediment can occur in a deposition of 1 inch every 10 minutes. What volume of water do you think you need for an inch of sediment over areas of thousands of square kilometers. Where the scientific model for the flood that provides that sort of detail. After deposition you of course have to have a new source of water bearing sediment thousands of kilometers away. What is the flow rate of the water carrying 13 feet of sediment per day from a very conservative 1000 kilometers away?

Consulting the USGS
the Colorado river at GC caries 3-13% sediment between 1925-1941

This means that to deposit 13 feet a day you would require water to a depth of between 100-433 feet and to replace this on a daily basis assuming that there will be complete sedimentation of that water in 24 hours.

If it comes from 1000 kilometers away that will correspond to 11.5 meters per second. This is 25 miles per hour. It is much faster than a tsunami once it hits land and nothing like a gentle tidal recession.

Of course if you accept miracles as the best explanation there is no problem. Got deposited this 5000 feet of sedimentary layers. Doest explain why some is shale some lime stone some sandstone. Why so much difference in a 1 year deposition.

pauluc Also Commented

Scientists and the Temptation to Bias Results

Sean Pitman: Repeated waves of sediment could be carried by tidal actions as well as massive repetitive tsunami-type waves which traversed the entire globe over and over again. Each one of these sediment-baring waves would have laid down another layer quite rapidly – and from different directions given that multiple separate impact events took place during this time (accounting for the different types of sedimentary layers coming from different regions of the globe). This also means that there would have been periods of time when the freshly-deposited sedimentary layers would have been exposed to air (allowing for raindrops, dinosaur eggs that were very hastily laid, sometimes on multiple layers within the same hatch of eggs, and the like to be finely preserved). As the next wave started to return to such an area, the water level would have gradually risen at first, filling in these delicate trace fossils without destroying them. Also, underwater turbiditic flows of sediment are known to be able to cover and preserve fine details along the surface of the underlying soft sedimentary layer.

And of this hypothesis there is scarcely a scrap of experimental evidence and simply is a product of the your superior knowledge and intellect alone. Tell me a few parameters that would persuade me that it is feasible both to have delicate tracks in water shallow enough for a salamander or similar to make foot tracks. What do you think was the distance over which the sediment was transported before deposited. How much sediment was there in the water? So how much water had to traverse a given point to build up 13 feet of compressed sediment every day for a period of 1 year or you can tell me the time over which this occurred. Where is your computer modelling for such a claim. Which of the meteor strikes specifically do you believe caused the flood catastrophe. Presumably that in Yukutan, Wolf creek in Australia and major Russia crates would be included but what about the sediment in which they impacted. Can you provide evidence that all these impacts occurred in the the precambrian rock and the crater was filled with a uniform sediment. Or perhaps you can tell me other asteroid impact sites that show exactly the geological features you would suggest based on a precambrian layer impact. Perhaps their lack of visibility is actually the proof. A time honoured tradition.

Scientists and the Temptation to Bias Results

Bob Helm: Third, I’m not sure what you consider “obvious scientific data,” but I have no desire to reject what is truly obvious in science. However, when certain assumptions in science do not make sense to me, I am willing to think outside the box and go against the dominant paradigm. That is not anti-science; that is how science advances.

Not really. science advances when a person does the experiment and reports the results in the peer reviewed literature where at a minimum it has been critiqued to reviewers and the editors of the journal. Whatever critiques of the science I may voice outside those channels and however many novel ideas and thinking outside the box I may do they are ephemoral unless they are accompanied by an hypothesis or the proposal of an explanation that makes sense of what we think does not makes sense, and translates into an experiment that derives new data.
That is science as understood by scientists.

Scientists and the Temptation to Bias Results

Sean Pitman: As I’ve explained to you before, the evidence that is actually in hand does not really suppose the “eolian” origin of any of the layers within the Grand Canyon. The Coconino sandstone, for example, shows many features that are much more consistent with deposition by water.

Of course you may be right. Brand has pointed out that track in the Coconino sandstone as evidence for the deposition of this presumed eolian formation in a water environment
He has published these observation in the peer reviewed literature in
1979, Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology
1991 Geology
1992 Geology
1996 Journal of paleontology
1996 Ichnos

Indeed these are his most cited published works according to Scopus. That the observation of track prints marine environment may have been deposited in an underwater water environment does nothing to explain why the 5000 foot sediment found at the Grand Canyon was established during the flood. I may not be able to think for myself but I have walked along the sea shore and found that footprint fast disappear on the seashore where there is wave activity and fare little better in shallow esterine environments. That there could be the postulated average daily deposition of 13 feet of sediment during a violent flood is I am afraid to say something I cannot imagine. It seems logically inconsistent that you could have both preservation of underwater track and a short deposition time in a violent flood.

Recent Comments by pauluc

Avondale College Arguing in Favor of Darwinian Evolution?

Bob Helm: With that said, I find your views to be spiritually dangerous and often scientifically weak. I detect a lot of smoke in your posts, but very little light. I hope you will continue to ponder these issues and try to have an open mind.

You are most welcome to your opinion and I know you would like nothing better than that anyone who takes Christianity and the Bible seriously but not literally to just go away. It is much better not to know of any possible problems with one current views. It very hard to get to the science when we cannot even agree on what is science. What passes as science on this site is so completely dismissive of its methodological basis and history and is entrained in a specific supernatural world view that allows arbitrary acceptance of any observation as miraculous. I think Roger’s paper may well be relevant to Adventist that believe that Christianity has and must respond to a careful study of physical reality by reconsidering its interpretations of the word of the Lord, but as Sean has indicated you are exception to that characterization. I still do not really understand why you should be interested at all in any science. It seems a bit messy to worry about facts. It really seems an unnecessary bother to argue whether the precambrian/cambrian boundary or the upper cenzoic (is that really what you meant?) as the evidence of a divine intervention.

Dont worry I do have an open mind which is why I still peruse this site to see how more knowledgable fundamentalist Adventists think. I wont worry you further.

Avondale College Arguing in Favor of Darwinian Evolution?

Sean Pitman: So, you do see the need for a police force and a military to maintain civil society, but somehow Christians should not provide what is an otherwise necessary part of that civil society? I’m with Abraham Lincoln on this one when he noted the inconsistency of such a position – like Orthodox Jews paying others to turn their lights on for them on Sabbath

On that logic you should not have any issue with working on Sabbath in any profession serving 24/7. Be that computer support, utilities firefighters. Those giving up those jobs because of inability to have sabbath observance were all deluded. They as Christians should be prepared to “provide what is otherwise a necessary part of civil society”

You cant have it both ways. You cant because of a moral postion claim that Adventists should have exception from working on Sabbath and at the same time deny me the right to consider immoral some occupations that may be very utilitarian in a world full of selfishness and the human acts of evil that comes from that.

Lets for a moment step back from lala land. Where are we and where did we come from on this thread?

1] You posted a rehash of all your usual arguments in response to an article about the more mainstream Adventist positions that may impact the way Adventism reacts to conventional science. All very straight forward.
2] The contention was that Adventism has accepted process for the orgin and evolution of the inanimate world. The birth and death of galaxys and stars and planets in black holes supernova and impacts of spiralling planets. This is where it gets really strange.
3] You contend that Adventism has always accepted the conclusions of that process but then expand on your view of the process which involves a little bit of order and natural law but large amounts of magic. God waited a few billions years until the interstellar material generated by the big band condensed into planets onto which God created life mature and complete. This included Heaven the place of his throne-room which he populated with physical being angels which it is implied have both mass and composition and metabolism.
4] When it was suggested that the same processes and natural law resulted in life on this planet this was claimed inconceivable and would never be done by any process involving life and death. Instead the life we see now is in reality designed to live for ever and has be chemically changed because it is deprived of a particular form of nutrient from a tree that existed on the Earth some 6000 years ago.
5] The inconguity of practicing medicine by the principles of process of natural law and the technology resulting from both the processes of the innanimate and the animate world rather than accepting the much more important process of divine intervention seems to be completely obsure.
6] When someone says that the process of life and death that gave us the physical substance of our universe is also the basis of the creation of life here he must be animal hating sadistic psychopath who cannot belieive in a God of love and grace and is lying when he says that non-violence characterizes the children of the heavenly father for one must always recognize that peace and freedom are only obtained over the bodies of 1/3 of the angels of heaven and the eternal physical and violent struggle against those who would practice violence.

I really cannot understand you Sean. Your ways are way beyond me. I am just sorry that Bob seems to be drawn into your twighlight zone.


Avondale College Arguing in Favor of Darwinian Evolution?
@Sean Pitman: sorry but your curious amalgam of magic and biology is not really comprehensible to me as a biologist or as a Christian . it. is neither logical or biologically feasible

Avondale College Arguing in Favor of Darwinian Evolution?

Sean Pitman: However, according to the Bible and Ellen White, before the Fall God specifically directed nature so that all sentient life was protected in a manner that there was no suffering or death. By eating from the “Tree of Life” God provided constant renewal and regeneration that worked against what would otherwise be inevitable entropic changes, decay, and death. It was by deliberately stepping away from the true Source of eternal life that mankind stepped away from God and into the full workings of mindless natural law alone – which does in fact inevitably lead to suffering and death.

And this interpretation is precisely why you need a theodicy. Where is the justice in killing all for the sake of the sins of one woman+man? It makes no sense logically. If they were conditionally immortal because of eating of the tree of life then did all the animals in all the world congregate around this tree like beasts around a water hole on the serengeti. how exactly do you as you are wont to do translate the account into a literal reality. And which beast had to come and eat. Or was it symbolic? Oh now that’s a thought.

Avondale College Arguing in Favor of Darwinian Evolution?

Sean Pitman: Come on now. Even I can imagine limitations to reproduction or the turnover of sentient carbon-based life. Surely you can at least imagine something similar? I know God can since such a world is described in the Bible and in the writings of Ellen White. Think about it…

Of course I have. This is not simply about reproduction. That is trivial. This is about metabolic process. Show me a carbon based life form that does not grow or metabolize anything and I will show you an organism in stasis as a spore “living” millions of year in amber. That is; effectively dead.

Real life cannot exist without metabolic process in a carbon based world and God has sanctified all this by a process of making good out of evil from the death of one comes life for others. Just as in the biological world so in the spiritual. By his death we have life. Just as God sanctified the practice of sacrifice of appeasement practiced by most cultures for thousands of years before and showed that in the Judeo-Christian tradition these same acts of sacrifice were emblematic of a monotheistic God that would become incarnate and bring life from death. So also he took the preceding accounts of creation derived as they were of the mesopotamian valley and recast it as an account of the monotheistic God who is above all but comes and dwells among us to become one of us. Participating in our life and death but showing us the importance of the transcendent life of the spirit that supercedes carbon based life and its inherent death. It is no fairy tale of 6 impossible things before breakfast. It is not pie in the sky by and by. It is rooted in a real world and it is about the transcendence of love and grace that is acted out in a real physical world by the incarnate God and us as we follow as His disciples.

That is the message I get from the images and visions of the Canon and EG White. But of course I read it for the message that it conveys not as a scientific text. That is where we fundamentally differ.