The Instigator
GarretKadeDupre
Pro (for)
Losing
33 Points
The Contender
bluesteel
Con (against)
Winning
78 Points

The earth is probably less than 10,000 years old.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 29 votes the winner is...
bluesteel
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/22/2014 Category: Science
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 16,463 times Debate No: 46456
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (104)
Votes (29)

 

GarretKadeDupre

Pro

In this debate, Pro will argue the evidence that the earth is younger than 10,000 years, and Con will argue the evidence that the earth is older than 10,000 years. The debate is to be determined by the preponderance of evidence.

Years are taken as units of time in the conventional sense as presently measured, not in an allegorical or poetic sense.

The claim that the earth is less than 10,000 years old is part of Young Earth Creationism (YEC). In this debate only the age of the earth is in contention, not other aspects of YEC.

The first round is for acceptance and definitions only; the Pro case will be given in R2. All arguments must be presented directly in the debate. Sources must be cited in the debate, and not given in Comments or elsewhere. All DDO site rules apply. Con may not introduce new evidence or arguments in the last round, because Pro has no space in the debate to reply.

I welcome my opponent to the debate.
bluesteel

Con

I accept.

Since Round 1 is for definitions, I just want to define the "preponderance of the evidence standard."

A preponderance means "more likely than not" and greater than 50% probability. However, normal rules of evidence apply, and the triers of fact may weigh the credibility of the evidence before considering it. Thus, when judging a debate by a preponderance, the judges should picture a giant scale. Each argument in support of the resolution = one object. If the argument is more credible, you should picture the object as larger. If the argument is less credible, you should picture the object as smaller. If the argument is completely uncredible, you should refuse to place the object on the scale. After determining the size of the objects [credibility], the judge should place all of the objects on the correct side of the scale [all the Pro arguments for YEC on one side and all the Con arguments against YEC on the other]. If Con has *more* arguments or *better, weightier* arguments, Con wins.
Debate Round No. 1
GarretKadeDupre

Pro

Thanks for the great explanation, Con. Now on to my arguments.

1. Bible

This argument's for those who don't need convincing the Bible's a credible source. Many scholars have, using the Bible, independently determined the origin of earth to have been ~4k BC, which means the earth's about 6kyr, adding the 2k years since Christ. Isaac Newton, for example, got a date of 3998 BC.(1)

For those who doubt Genesis reads literally, I point out Jesus and Peter referenced it as historical fact; Jesus challenged the Pharisees, “Have you not read that he who created them from the beginning made them male and female( … )?”(2)

Peter said, “[God] did not spare the ancient world when he brought the flood on its ungodly people, but protected Noah( … )”(3)

2. Helium

Zircon crystals taken from a New Mexico borehole in 1974 were U-Pb dated at 1.5byrs.(Zartman, 1979) It was determined 58% of the Helium produced by radioactive decay, which should have escaped by 1.5byrs, was still present.(Gentry et al., 1982)

In 2000, scientists predicted the Helium diffusion rate required to produce Gentry's results while assuming the crystals were 1.5byrs old, and the rate necessary when they were assumed 6kyrs old. Both predictions were published before the actual rate of diffusion was known.

The results of a later experiment confirmed the prediction made under the 6kyr model, and showed the prediction based on the 1.5byr model to be off by a factor of over 100k:

[The] data strongly support [the] hypothesis of episodes of highly accelerated nuclear decay occurring within thousands of years ago. Such accelerations shrink the radioisotopic “billions of years” down to [a] 6000-year timescale( … ).”(Humphreys, 2005)

For clarification of the results:



The implications of these results are two-fold: it substantiates my claim of an earth younger than 10k years, and preemptively refutes any radiometric argument for an older earth.

3. Trees

No tree with over 5k rings exists.(4)(5) If earth were over 10kyrs old, you'd expect to find at least one tree with more than 5k rings.

4. Supernovas

Our galaxy experiences ~3 supernovas per year.(6) There are ~200 supernova remnants in the Milky Way. Extrapolating this data back in time reveals a maximum age of the galaxy of less than 10kyrs.(Davies, 1994) Were the Milky Way billions of years old, there'd be many more supernova remnants. Because it assumes an unrealistically older age for the galaxy, NASA calls these hypothetical supernovas “mysteriously missing”.(7)

5. Mutations

There is “an unexpected lack of diversity within human mtDNA worldwide,” as 83% of mtDNA is shared among all people.(Carter et al., 2008) Extrapolating observed mtDNA mutation rates back in time reveals the first woman lived ~6kyrs ago, accounting for the fact mtDNA's maternally inherited.(Gibbons, 1998)

6. Population

There's 7 billion people in the world.(8) If one assumes the population doubles every 150yrs, extrapolation back in time reveals the first human couple lived less than 10kyrs ago.

The assumption the population doubles every 150yrs is actually an extremely conservative estimate. If one plugs in the current rate of growth, doubling the population every 40yrs, the math demonstrates the first human couple lived less than 6kyrs ago.

7. Magnetic Field

The maximum possible energy of earth's magnetic field, at origin, couldn't have exceeded ~1023 joules.(Barnes, 1975) Extrapolation back in time of this data and the current decay rate reveals an origin of less than 9kyrs.(Humprheys, 1990)

(1) http://geofaculty.uwyo.edu...

(2) Matthew 19:4

(3) 2 Peter 2:5

(4) http://digitalarts.ucsd.edu...

(5) http://cos.arizona.edu...

(6) http://www.nasa.gov...

(7) http://science1.nasa.gov... (metadata)

(8) http://www.census.gov...

bluesteel

Con

I’ll offer my case, then rebut next round.

C1: The Bible is a work of fiction

The *only* evidence my opponent has on his side is the Bible. The idea that the Earth is 6000 years old comes from stringing together: (1) the genealogies of people’s lives from Genesis, (2) the estimate of when the Jews left Egypt in Exodus, and (3) the estimate of when the Temple was built in 1 Kings. [1] To believe that these three texts prove *anything* requires the assumption that these are historically accurate documents [as opposed to recordings of fictional stories passed down through oral tradition]. I will prove that all three are works of fiction, or at the very least, contain dubious information that should cause you to doubt their veracity. You should thus give very little weight to the Bible in your calculation of whether Pro has met his burden to prove a young Earth by a preponderance of the evidence.

(1) Genesis is wrong

I have four proofs of this:

(a) There are two accounts of the Creation story, both of which contradict each other in terms of chronology. [2]

(b) Genesis contains an account of a talking snake, but snakes do not have vocal cords. [2]

(c) Genesis contains an account of Noah’s Ark, which says the world’s entire land mass was covered in rain water. However, rain comes from precipitation from the ocean, so it cannot raise sea levels. Melting of the polar ice caps could raise sea levels, but not enough to entirely cover all land. The following picture shows what would happen to North America if all the ice on Earth melted.

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(d) Genesis says that God created man right away, which implies that man did not evolve from a common ancestor with apes. However, fossils have proven there were intermediate species, specifically Homo Habilis and Australopithecus (see below).

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(2) Exodus is wrong

The LA Times reports that “[a]fter a century of excavations” trying to prove the Bible true, “virtually every modern archeologist who has investigated the story of the Exodus” agrees that there is no evidence that “the Israelites were ever in Egypt, were ever enslaved, ever wandered in the Sinai wilderness for 40 years or ever conquered the land of Canaan under Joshua's leadership." [3]

(3) 1 Kings is not scientifically accurate

1 Kings claims to calculate the circumference of a circle based on its diameter, but it got the value of Pi wrong. [4]

These are not documents that were meant to estimate the age of the Earth with scientific precision. Thus, very little weight should be given to Pro’s estimate of the age of the Earth.

C2: The Earth is older than 10,000 years

(1) Amino acid dating

All biological tissues contain amino acids. All amino acids except glycine have an asymmetric carbon atom, which means that the amino acid can have two different configurations, "D" or "L." With a few important exceptions, living organisms keep all their amino acids in the "L" configuration. When an organism dies, its amino acids begin to change from L to D. Thus, measuring the ratio of D to L in a sample enables one to estimate how long ago the specimen died.

Using the amino acid isoleucine, samples have been dated as being several million years old. [5]

(2) Continental Drift

If you look closely at the west coast of Africa, you’ll notice that it fits perfectly with the east coast of South America. (see video) [6] This is because the continents were at one time part of one giant land mass (see picture).

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The tectonic plates under the various continents caused them to split apart. At the rate that the plates move, it would take at least 200 million years for the continents to reach their current positions after separating. Thus, the Earth is at least 200 million years old.

(3) Mitochondrial Eve

The mitochondria that a person inherits all come from the ovum produced by their mother. Because mitochondrial DNA contains a region that changes at a predictable rate, scientists can estimate the age of “mitochondrial Eve” - the woman from whom we all inherited our mitochondrial DNA. [8] This Eve lived approximately 200,000 years ago. [8] [Note: mitochondrial Eve is not the first human, but merely the oldest woman with currently living descendants].

(4) Cosmogenic radionuclide dating

When a cosmic ray reaches Earth, it causes exposed rocks to form certain isotopes in its outer layers called “cosmogenic nuclides.” These nuclides are produced at and decay at a known rate. By measuring the concentration of these nuclides, scientists can estimate how long a rock has been exposed to the elements. This method of dating has found rocks that were exposed to cosmic radiation for several millions of years. [9]

(5) Dendrochronology

Dendrochronology is a method of scientific dating which is based on annual tree growth patterns. The age of a tree can be found by counting its rings. While no single tree has lived longer than 5,000 years, it is possible to push the chronology back by matching rings in live trees with those in dead trees. Dendrochronology has dated dead trees is some areas as being more than 11,000 years old. [10]

(6) Erosion

It would take 17 million years for water to form the Grand Canyon through erosion, based on the type of rock that is present at the Grand Canyon. [11] For the Grand Canyon to be formed by Noah’s Flood, like Young Earthers believe, the rocks of the Grand Canyon would need the solubility of granulated sugar.

(7) Fission track dating

Uranium-238 decays to Uranium-235 at a predictable rate. When uranium decays in a crystalline mineral, it leaves certain “damage trails” or tracks. By counting the number of tracks, scientists can estimate the age of certain minerals that contain Uranium. Using this technique, scientists have found minerals that are 23 million years old. [12]

(8) Ice layering

Annual differences in temperature and irradiation cause ice to form differently from year to year, and this generates alternating layers of light and dark ice, much like tree rings. This method is considered a relatively accurate way to measure the age of an ice sheet. The oldest ice layer has been estimated to be 160,000 years old. [13]

(9) Nitrogen impurities in natural diamonds

Synthetic and recently formed diamonds contain very little nitrogen because it takes long periods for the nitrogen to be squeezed into the diamond lattice along with the carbon. Recent research has estimated that it would take between 200 million and 2 billion years to form the amount of nitrogen we have found in some diamonds. [14]

(10) Radioactive decay

Radioactive isotopes decay at a constant rate. Using measurements of radioactive carbon, argon, iodine, lead, neon, etc…, scientists can estimate the age of an item based on how much of the radioactive isotope has decayed. Using this technique, scientists have measured countless objects that are older than 10,000 years. [15]

In addition, scientists found coral with a growth rate that would have required a year with 400 days in it. [16] Based on the rate of change in the Earth’s rotation, the last time the Earth had 400 days in a year was 370 million years ago, which is consistent with the radioactive dating of the coral. [16]

[1] http://creation.com...

[2] http://tinyurl.com...

[3] http://tinyurl.com...

[4] http://tinyurl.com...

[5] Michael D. Petraglia, Ravi Korisettar (1998). Early Human Behaviour in Global Context. Page 63

[6] http://tinyurl.com...

[7] Laurie R. Godfrey (1983). "Scientists Confront Creationism." 35-36.

[8] http://tinyurl.com...

[9] Manz, Lorraine. "In-situ Cosmogenic Nuclides: Their Role in Studying the Age and Evolution of Landscapes"

[10] Mark Isaak (2004). "Claim CG010"(TalkOrigins)

[11] http://tinyurl.com...

[12] http://tinyurl.com...

[13] Matt Brinkman (1995). "Ice Core Dating"(TalkOrigins)

[14] T. Evans, Zengdu Qi (1981). "The kinetics of the aggregation of of nitrogen atoms in diamond"

[15] Chris Stassen (1996-2005)."The Age of the Earth"(TalkOrigins)

[16] Wells, John W. (1963). CORAL GROWTH AND GEOCHRONOMETRY. Nature.

Debate Round No. 2
GarretKadeDupre

Pro

I guess Con changed his mind about saving rebuttals for later, lol. That's fine.

1. Bible

Con says the Bible is my only evidence, but my Supernova argument also proves my case. My Helium & Magnetic Field points show my position to be most likely, and the rest lend support.

Back to the Bible: Con says this point relies on the assumption the Bible's a credible record, but Con's case relies on the assumption that naturalism is correct.

If you worship the Triune God, the Bible must weigh heavily on the scale Con previously described.

There aren't conflicting accounts of Creation in Genesis.(9) God cursed the creature Con refers to by removing it's legs; Con offered no reason why God couldn't also remove it's vocal cords.

Con claims there's not enough water to cover earth, not realizing the Flood transformed the land into how it looks today. Here's a map of earth with the same amount of water, but flatter land:

Con's skull argument is a non-sequitur; I could put my grandparents' skulls on a chart below a skull from a recently dead person from the other side of the world and argue just as convincingly that this proves my grandparents are the ancestors of this dead person from China.

Con's claim that Exodus is wrong is an argument from ignorance; he says since we haven't found archeological evidence proving Exodus, Exodus must be false.

Con's claim Kings got the value of pi wrong, because they rounded ~3.14 to 3, fails because “[w]henever we work with pi we are [always] rounding it to some number of digits, so all such calculations are incorrect.”(10)

Today's best mathematician cannot express pi as a decimal without rounding, so to demand the Bible do so is special pleading.

Racemization

Amino acid dating is not reliable: it is highly temperature dependent( … ); depends on the state of the amino acids( … ); and it is highly dependent on environment( … ).”(Blender, 1974)

Con claims samples have been dated via the amino acid isoleucine, but inspection of his source reveals those dates were actually based on radiometric dating, which I've already refuted (see my Helium argument).

Continental Drift

To get his 200myr date, Con assumes the rate of drift has always been constant, but it was actually much faster in the past.(Mitchell et al., 2012)

Mitochondrial Eve

Con claims 'Eve' lived 200kyrs ago, but his cited study relied on the assumption she lived in “deep time” from the outset.(11) This makes Con's study a great example of methodological bias. My claim, on the other hand, made no such assumption, so it's more parsimonious and credible.

Dendrochronology

In Genesis, fully-grown trees were created in 1 day: “The land produced vegetation:( … ) trees bearing fruit with seed( … ).” So mature trees were created with numerous false rings, which may account for Con's supposed 11kyr record.

However, Con's record is based on Bristlecone Pine rings. This species of tree has been demonstrated to grow false rings due to dry conditions in as little as 2 weeks.(Lammerts, 1983) As Con's study is based on a population of Bristlecone Pine trees growing in extremely dry conditions, and doesn't account for Lammerts' data, it's not credible.

Erosion

I'm dismissing Con's “granulated sugar” argument as blind assertion. Con's dating of the Grand Canyon relies on radiometric dating, which I've already refuted. The same goes for his Fission Track Dating, Radioactive Decay, and Cosmogenic Radionuclide Dating arguments, as they are all simply various types of radiometric dating.

Ice Layering

Con's claim of a 160kyr old ice layer cites talkorigins.org, which then cites itself. I request my opponent provides a more credible source for his claim before I spend time rebutting it.

Nitrogen In Diamonds

Con says a 200byr age of Nitrogen in diamonds is based on “recent research,” but only cites a 30yr old paper. I request Con cite the “recent research” he bases his claim on before I spend time rebutting it.

Coral

Con claims that “scientists found coral with a growth rate that would have required a year with 400 days in it”, but his own source doesn't dare make so bold a claim:

Few fossil corals are sufficiently well preserved to show clearly the supposed diurnal growth-lines, and it is not easy to determine the annual rate( … ) Diurnal and annual growth-rates vary in the same individual, adding to the complexity( … ) [Fossil coral has a # of rings] ranging between extremes of 385 and 410.

Second, Con's 370myr coral dating fails to take into account the fact that a coral growth rate has been observed that could explain the growth of most coral in the world within a timespan of less than 10kyrs.(Morris & Whitcomb, 1961)

Young Earth Predictions

In 1984, Physicist Humphreys employed a model of a solar system younger than 10kyrs to make several predictions about the magnetism of planets.(Humphreys, 1984) His model took into consideration the Genesis account of God creating heavenly bodies out of water. Here are some of those predictions:

  • Older igneous rocks from Mercury or Mars should have natural remanent magnetization, as the Moon's rocks do.
  • Mercury's decay rate is so rapid that some future probe could detect it fairly soon. In 1990 the planet's magnetic moment should be 1.8 percent smaller than its 1975 value.
  • The upcoming Voyager 2 encounters with Uranus and Neptune should show planetary magnetic moments less than the k = 1.0 limit: 8.2 x 1025 J/T for Uranus and 9.7 x 1025 J/T for Neptune.
  • [T]he present dipole moment of Uranus would be of the order of 1024 J/T.
  • [W]e would expect Neptune to have a( … ) magnetic moment, of the order of 1024 J/T.

By 2012, NASA had confirmed all five. The success of Humphreys' young earth model, in contrast to the failure of the mainstream Dynamo Theory (which demands a much older earth), demonstrates that the earth is most likely under 10kyrs old.

(9) Genesis

(10) http://mathforum.org...

(11) http://news.rice.edu...

bluesteel

Con

== Refuting my opponent’s points from Round 2 ==

R1: Bible

I refuted this last round. The Bible is not scientifically accurate.

My opponent claims the existence of a historical preacher named “Jesus” proves the truth of Genesis, but even if there was a real man named Jesus, his existence does not prove the accuracy of a document written more than 1000 years before his birth [Genesis].

R2: Helium

My opponent explains this really unclearly. Basically, scientists dated zircon crystals using radioactive dating based on the decay rate of uranium to lead. They dated the sample as 1.5 million years old. A Creationist named Humphreys said, “Hey wait, helium is a byproduct of uranium decay and this sample has too much helium - it should have all diffused out by now if it’s so old.” Using the rate at which helium normally diffuses, Humphreys calculated that the rock must be only 6000 years old. [1] However, helium diffuses more slowly at the temperature and pressure the zircon was under. [1]

In addition, Humphreys still needed to explain why the amount of lead in the zircon crystal was consistent with the sample being 1.5 million years old (it is called “Uranium-Lead dating” for a reason). Humphreys hypothesized that increased decay rates occurred during Creation or the Flood. [1] Not only does this alter the laws of chemistry, the heat from this accelerated decay would have vaporized the Earth. [1]

In addition, the zircon crystals are just *one* example. Last round, I cited a source saying that radioactive dating has been used *thousands* of times to date objects as older than 10,000 years. Uranium-lead dating, for example, is one of the oldest and most reliable dating methods; it has dated objects between 1 million and 4.5 billion years old with an accuracy of +/- .1%. [8]

R3: Trees

There are no living trees older than 5,000 years for the same reason that there are no living human beings older than 123 years – nothing lives forever. But since trees rings from a given year are unique, rings from live and dead trees [from the same region] can be matched up to extend the chronology back to 11,000 years.

R4: supernovas

My opponent claims that there should be more supernova remnants if the Milky Way is older than 10,000 years. However, the answer is: there are. We simply haven’t found them all yet. As Steve Moore explains, the parts of our observable Galaxy are quite small; our view is obscured by large amounts of dust and interstellar matter. [4] In addition, older supernovas have faded beyond our ability to recognize them. [4]

My opponent’s own NASA source proves this. His source says that we discovered a new supernova “hidden in the dust fields of the galactic center” after a “decades-long ‘galactic hunt.’” (see his source 7) His own source proves how hard it is to find supernova remnants. It took a 10-year hunt to find *one.*

We also have methods of dating supernova remnants and have dated remnants that are much older than 10,000 years. [4] For example, the remnants of supernova “G69.0 + 2.7 is at least 77,000 years old.” [4]

R5: mtDNA [same as my Mitochondrial Eve argument]

The Creationist study (Gibbons) my opponent references is flawed because it cherry-picks its mutation rate from the one region of the mtDNA that is known to be highly volatile. [2] The study starts with the premise that there is a Young Earth and works backwards (which is not scientific). [2] The rest of mtDNA has a mutation rate that is similar to normal DNA, and yields the estimate that Mitochondrial Eve is 200,000 years old. [2] Analysis of regions of the X-chromosome confirms that our common matriarch lived approximately 200,000 years ago. [2] In addition, studies of the Y-Chromosome have found that we are all descended from a Chromosomal Adam who lived 209,000 years ago. [3]

R6: Population

My opponent pulls a number out of his rectum – saying the population doubles every 150 years. However, we all know that population growth rates are going to be affected by: (1) infant mortality rates, (2) availability of food, (3) mass disease outbreaks [like the Bubonic Plague], (4) sanitation, (5) medicine, etc… The claim that population growth rates would be constant throughout history is absurd. Growth rates are faster now due to advancements in science and get slower the further back in history you go. For example, the growth rate between the years 1000 and 1800 was 0.1227 percent, based on actual population estimates [which is a doubling every 565 years]. [5] In fact, the growth rate was negative at many points in history, such as during the Plague [when the population of the world fell from 450 million to 350 million during the 14th Century]. You can’t just assume a constant rate of growth throughout history. If animal populations always grew at a constant rate, there would be no extinct or endangered species.

R7: Magnetic field

The Barnes study my opponent cites assumed an exponential rate of decay of the magnetic field, but the field actually decays at a constant rate. [6] In addition, the Earth’s magnetic field has actually reversed polarity multiple times, meaning that the magnetic fields decays [gets weaker] then gets stronger, then gets weaker, then gets stronger. [6] We have found evidence of at least 171 magnetic reversals. [7] Because we can estimate how long ago these reversals happened, these 171 magnetic reversals make the Earth at least 76 million years old. [7]

== Refuting my opponent’s Round 3 ==


The Bible

The raising of land (into mountains) is caused by tectonic activity, not Floods. My opponent’s assertion that a Flood caused the land to “rise” is absurd. The Flood story makes no scientific sense. It’s almost as if it were written by ancient peoples who did not understand how rain works.

Intermediate Homo species also disprove Genesis. My opponent’s grandmother’s skull would not resemble that of earlier species in terms of cranial or brow ridge size.

Exodus is also falsified by the “inexorable zero” archeological evidence found to support it. If it were true, we’d expect to find some evidence of the battles it recounts or the three million people who lived in the Sinai for 40 years.

Racemization

Amino acid racemization is temperature dependent. However, racemization is either done is places with relatively constant temperatures (like the deep sea) or historical temperature data is used in the estimate. [9] Chemical changes in seabed plankton can be used to estimate temperatures going back 56 million years.

Continental Drift

Mitchell observed that under some rare circumstances, the tectonic plates moved 4 times faster. [11] Even at this speed, the continents would have converged 50 million years ago (as opposed to 200 million). Mitchell, however, states that accelerated movement is not the norm and does not disprove a millions-of-years old Earth. [10]

Mitochondrial Eve

I have provided independent verification (using mtDNA, X-chromosomal DNA, and Y-chromosomal DNA) that our last common ancestors (male and female) lived about 200,000 years ago.

Dendrochronology

Experts in dendochronology can easily distinguish between false and real rings. This picture is from a slideshow teaching students how to do so. The lecture calls the problem of false rings a "minor" problem that is easily solved.

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Other trees from the region allow scientists to distinguish “stress rings” from real rings. [12]

I’ll address my opponent's other arguments next round, but I just want to point out that his "YEC predictions" argument is completely underexplained. Why do these predictions prove a young Earth?

[1] http://tinyurl.com...

[2] http://tinyurl.com...

[3] http://tinyurl.com...

[4] http://tinyurl.com...

[5] http://tinyurl.com...

[6] http://tinyurl.com...

[7] http://tinyurl.com...

[8] Parrish, Randall R.; Noble, Stephen R., 2003. Zircon U-Th-Pb Geochronology by Isotope Dilution

[9] http://tinyurl.com...

[10] http://tinyurl.com...

[11] http://tinyurl.com...

[12] http://tinyurl.com...
Debate Round No. 3
GarretKadeDupre

Pro

1. Bible

Con conceded to my refutations of his points by not defending them. E.g., I showed the Bible's reference to pi as 3 is an artifact of representing an irrational number in decimal form, like how meaning is lost in translation. Con didn't show the Bible to be unscientific. It'd be unfair to me for him to resurrect his points next turn since I'm unable to respond, and he had his chance.

Con's 'Jesus' point is an argument from ignorance; he says as Jesus doesn't prove Genesis is right, it must be wrong.

Con claims the Flood can't form mountains and doesn't make scientific sense, failing to realize the Flood (capital F) encompasses catastrophic geological processes in scientific literature.(Austin et al., 1994)

Con asserts “Intermediate Homo species also disprove Genesis.” That's a non-sequitur. Con's arbitrary classifications don't make anyone less human or the Bible less accurate, anymore than USA's classification of Negroes as 3/5 human made them less human.

My Bible argument's retained it's weight.

2. Helium

I request the conduct point for Con's false attribution of a fabricated quote to Dr. Humphreys.

Con says there was extra Helium in the zircon because it “diffuses more slowly at [that] temperature and pressure( … ).” Humphrey shared Con's concern, so he repeated Gentry's 1982 experiment a couple decades later. Contrasting the 1982 Helium content with the new one revealed the diffusion rate.(Humphreys et al., 2004) This rate reveals a ~6kyr age for the zircon.

This argument doesn't prove a 6kyr age for earth, but it satisfies my burden by showing it's probable, as this zircon is from deep in the earth. If rock as deep as Precambrian is only 6kyrs old, it follows the rest of earth is the same age.

Helium didn't enter the zircon from outside, because the zircon contained more Helium than it's surrounding environment. Fick's Second Law Of Diffusion confirms Helium was escaping the zircon, not entering it.

Con's source for his claim is bogus; the author claims “Humphreys work is not repeatable by other scientists, thus it is unverifiable.” Humphreys merely repeated Gentry's 1982 experiment, so anyone who wants to verify Humphreys' results can easily do so.

The accelerated nuclear decay hypothesis resolves Con's concerns, and does so without “vaporiz[ing] the earth” or “alter[ing] the laws of chemistry.” It's also consistent with String Theory.(Chaffin, 2000) In fact, nuclear decay has been accelerated a billion-fold in the laboratory.(Bosch et al., 1996)

Con strawmans my Helium argument by misconstruing it as an example of conflicting radiometric dates. He doesn't realize measuring Helium diffusion isn't radiometric dating, but an independent dating technique which refutes the foundational assumption of radiometrics; namely, that the rate of nuclear decay has always been constant. Thus, all Con's radiometric dating arguments fail.

Again, Helium radiometric dating would involve measuring the ratio of Helium to another element, not the rate of Helium diffusion. Con needs to realize this important distinction.

3. Trees

Con argues a composite record (that extends far beyond the age of any one tree) can be made by linking trees where they share unique rings. The longest record he can provide is ~11kyrs; any record longer than that relies on radiometric dating.

To fit this record into my 10kyr timeframe, I only need to explain 1k rings, which I already did: Lammert showed Pines grow a double ring in as little as 2 weeks, and it's the same species of Pine which Con's record is derived from. As Con's Pines are growing in the same dry conditions which provoke double rings, it's very reasonable to conclude that ~10% of their rings are false. This fits Con's rings into 10kyrs.

Con's best rebuttal here is “Experts in dendochronology [sic] can easily distinguish between false and real rings.” This argument relies on the premise that false rings always look different from true rings; your level of expertise is irrelevant if there is nothing to distinguish true rings from false ones. I posit that ~10% of Con's rings are false.

At best, I've obliterated Con's tree argument, but even at worst, I've reduced it's weight to that of a grain of sand; misidentification of a mere 10% of his rings would be consistent with an earth younger than 10kyrs.

4. Supernovas

I erred; four, not three, supernovas occur every century in the Milky Way.(Ilovaisky, 1972) This strengthens my argument by raising the number of supernovas we should encounter, were the galaxy really older than 10kyrs.

Con claims we don't find more because they fade away, but Ilovaisky showed they are recognizable for ~1myrs. That means there should be 40k identifiable supernovae. We've only found 200, and arguing “how hard it is to find supernova remnants” isn't sufficient to excuse the 98% NASA labels “mysteriously missing”.(7) It's baffling Con tries to cite NASA against me.

Con's claim of supernova remnants dated at 77kyrs is dismissed because it's based on already-refuted radiometric dating.

5. Mutations

Con tries to discredit my Gibbons study by calling it “Creationist” and saying it “starts with the premise that there is a Young Earth( … ).” I'll be generous and assume Con misread; Gibbons is an evolutionist, and for that reason rejected the young earth implications of her results:

Using the new clock, [Eve] would be a mere 6000 years old. No one thinks that's the case( … ).”(Gibbons, 1998)

Con's claim that “Eve is 200,000 years old” is dismissed for citing a layperson (Mark Isaak), and I refuted his study last round.

The claim Adam lived 200kyrs ago cites a study published right after one that claimed he lived 300kyrs ago.(Mendez, 2013) They can't both be right, but they can both be wrong. At least they're getting a younger date, which means they're getting closer to the actual one: ~6kyrs ago.

6. Population

Con argues the growth rate is faster now “due to advancements in science”, failing to realize most of the world's population growth comes from 3rd world nations: “more than 90% of the world's total population growth between now and the year 2025 will occur in developing countries.” Technology is not as correlated to population growth as Con thinks.

Con says I “can’t just assume a constant rate of growth” and calls my numbers “absurd”, but I'd do just fine assuming a rate of growth 4x slower than today's, which is 1.1%.(13) To get from 2 people to today's 7 billion in 10kyrs, I only need a 0.25% rate.

If Con wants to argue people have been around for immensely longer, he'll have to propose some potent, long-lasting factors to justify an average growth rate of less than 0.25%.

7. Magnetic Field

Con refuted himself: “the field actually decays at a constant rate( … ) the magnetic fields decays [gets weaker] then gets stronger, then gets weaker, then gets stronger.

Racemization

Con's source describes using racemization to “infer the sources and composition of sedimentary organic matter” and combining it with radiometric dating to measure the ratio of “abiotic racemization” to other racemization sources.

It has nothing to do with amino acid dating, and everything to do with radiometric dating, which I've already refuted.

The claim “seabed plankton” shows a 54myr age is dismissed as assertion.

Continental Drift

Catastrophic Plate Tectonics explains continental separation in under 10kyrs.(Austin, 1994)

YEC Predictions

The success of one theory over a competing theory shows the former theory to be most likely correct. The confirmation of Humphreys' YEC model predictions show the YEC position is most likely correct, in contrast with the failure of the competing old-earth, Dynamo theory, which has been around for decades with no success.

Con may not return to any points he conceded last round, for I have no room to respond. Thanks for this debate.

(12) https://www.scu.edu...

(13) https://www.cia.gov...

bluesteel

Con

== Overview ==


Remember, when considering which side has won under a preponderance of the evidence standard, you should picture a giant scale. Whichever side has more weight on their side of the scale wins. Weight is determined both by the quantity of evidence and quality [or credibility] of the evidence.



Pro side evidence


My opponent offered seven pieces of evidence of a Young Earth. I will go through each one, but first, a general note about the credibility of the evidence. My opponent relies on two Young Earth Creationist researchers: William Gibbons and Russell Humphreys. Both of them start with the premise that the Earth is young and work backwards to justify this belief. In contrast, when scientists estimate the age of a particular object, they are working forwards. They don’t pre-decide what age they want to find. Because this methodology is more scientific, all my sources should be weighed as more credible than Pro’s.



(1) The Bible


The Bible should be given zero weight. I have shown why the Bible should not be read literally as a source meant to date the Earth with scientific precision. Genesis was written around 1600 BC, prior to the advent of archeology, physics, or chemistry. The Flood story reveals a fundamental misunderstanding of where rain comes from. The Exodus has proven to be historically inaccurate: the Jews were never in Egypt, according to archeological data. The Creation story fundamentally misunderstands evolution, leaving out intermediate hominid species between humans and apes. Due to these glaring misunderstandings of science, using the Exodus and the genealogies from Genesis to date the Earth holds no scientific merit. Don’t weigh this evidence at all.



(2) Helium in zircon crystals


As geologist Kevin Henke has explained, Humphreys’ work on Helium diffusion is “based on many false assumptions.” The uncertainty surrounding Helium diffusion rates is why Helium is not used in dating. Although Helium is one byproduct of Uranium decay, Lead is a far more stable byproduct. The amount of Lead in the zircon samples yielded an age of the samples of 1.5 million years. If anything, the zircon crystals are placed on the Con side of the evidentiary scale.



(3) Supernovas


There are no “missing” supernova remnants. There are simply a bunch of supernova remnants that we have not found yet because they are hidden in dust clouds or behind other matter. If anything, this evidence goes to the Con side because we have dated supernova fragments as being older than 10K years based on their “radii and rate of expansion,” not based on radiometric dating (as Pro asserts).



(4) Mitochondrial Eve


My opponent’s study author (Gibbons) is not even a biologist; he majored in Religious Studies at Immanuel Baptist College. His methodology was deeply flawed. Multiple biologists have estimated Mitochondrial Eve’s age at 200,000 years, using both mtDNA and X-Chromosomal DNA. This evidence definitely goes to the Con side.



(5) Population


My opponent’s assumption (of a constant, positive growth rate) is wrong. The further back in time you go, the lower the population growth rate due to disease, famine, and predation [lions used to eat us]. The actual growth rate between 1000 AD and 1800 AD was four times slower than the rate Pro used to calculate a 10,000-year old Earth. Assuming Pro’s math is correct, using the actual slower rate means the Earth is older than 10,000 years. This evidence goes to the Con side.



(6) Magnetic field


Pro’s study wrongfully assumes exponential decay and does not account for the ability of the field to reverse polarity. Magnetic reversals (171 of them) prove the Earth is at least 76 million years old. This argument also goes to the Con side.



(7) YEC Predictions


These predictions come from an apologetics study by Humphreys that attempted to explain why distant starlight is red-shifted (indicating that the universe is 14 billion years old). My opponent never explains why any of these predictions disprove an old universe. There are alternate explanations for all these predictions. For example, moon rock is magnetic because the moon had a molten core [that magnetized the rock] 4.2 billion years ago. [1] Any predictive model is going to be right some of the time because “even a broken clock is right twice a day.” To prove Humphreys’ model valid, Pro would need to prove that all of its predictions have proven true, not just a cherry-picked few. Therefore, give little to no weight to this argument because Pro offers no explanation of how it proves a Young Earth.



Con Side Evidence


Not only have I turned five of Pro’s seven arguments against him, but I also offered ten proofs that the Earth is older than 10,000 years. Even assuming Pro is right that two are redundant with radioactive dating because they also rely on the physics of radioactive decay, that is still eight proofs to Pro’s remaining two [the Bible and YEC predictions]. The preponderance of the evidence is clearly on my side.



(1) Radioactive dating


This should be weighed very heavily in the debate. Pro never refutes it, except to say that Helium from one sample indicates that the Uranium-Lead dating of the sample might have been wrong. However, Helium diffusion is not a reliable or recognized dating technique.


Radioactive dating has found tens of thousands of samples to be older than 10,000 years. The only way to explain away these results is to assume that God sped up the rate of radioactive decay during the Flood, but the heat from all these accelerated decays would have vaporized the Earth.


The fact that Uranium-Lead dating can be independently verified using fission track dating (which also involves estimates based on the half life of Uranium) proves that radioactive dating is accurate and internally consistent.



(2) Erosion


This should also be weighed very heavily. Pro’s only response was that my source mentioned that radioactive dating was used to confirm that erosion of the Grand Canyon took millions of years. However, he has no refutation to the argument that the geological process of erosion would take millions of years to form the Grand Canyon. Erosion of that magnitude could not happen in 10,000 years.



(3) Ice layering


This should be weighed very heavily. Pro only nitpicks my source, but does not refute that the dating of the oldest observed ice layers proves the Earth is at least 160,000 years old.



(4) Nitrogen in diamonds


This should be weighed very heavily. Pro never refutes the study that it would take at least 200 million years of intense pressure to force nitrogen into the strong carbon bonds of a natural diamond. Pro only complains that the study is not recent enough.



(5) Continental Drift


This should be weighed very heavily. Even if Pro is correct that the continents can move four times faster than they do today, this still yields an estimate that the continents converged 50 million years ago.



(6) Chromosomal Adam


This should be weighed very heavily. Pro never refutes that based on Y-Chromosomal mutation rates, the last man with currently-living descendants lived 200,000 years ago.



(7) Dendrochronology


This should be weighed rather heavily. Pro is correct that there are minor problems with false “stress rings” forming. However, expert dendrochronologists know how to check for and correct for false rings. Dendrochronology proves 11,000 year old trees.



(8) Amino acid dating


This should be weighed somewhat heavily. My opponent is correct that amino acid dating sometimes relies on making certain assumptions about temperature. However, historical temperature data is known (going back 56 million years), thus yielding accurate estimates. Amino acid dating proves the Earth is millions of years old.



Conclusion: with the 5 arguments I turned against Pro, plus the 8 arguments above, that’s 13 strong arguments for an Old Earth against 2 very weak arguments for a Young Earth [the Bible, and unexplained YEC predictions]. The weight of the evidence is clear. Vote Con.




[1] http://tinyurl.com...

Debate Round No. 4
104 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by makhdoom5 3 years ago
makhdoom5
r u kidding me. i never vote bombed, i never like vote bomb.
i am not just in these matter.
those who have presented good arguments who win.
i have given a one vote against more then 7 vote. and a review committee sit and asked what is this.
but see my vote stands there.
coz i see things deeply and differently.
in that debate i am talking about.
the debater whom against i voted admitted i gave just vote.
here i did not read full debate. i dont vote until i read full debate.
Posted by Sagey 3 years ago
Sagey
I haven't tried taking the other side < 10,000 yet I've studied YEC concepts for 30 years now, maybe I have enough knowledge of their dogma to mount a case for it, so it could be fun.
Posted by 9spaceking 3 years ago
9spaceking
I did this argument once and lost on the "less than 10,000 years old" side. Seriously, I even supported the "more than 10,000 years old" side.
Posted by bluesteel 3 years ago
bluesteel
thanks sagey
Posted by Sagey 3 years ago
Sagey
BTW, Congrats on making front position on DDO guys! XD~
Posted by Sagey 3 years ago
Sagey
LOL MakhDoom, The fate of planet Earth hangs on the result of this debate.
:-D~
If Pro wins, we will have to rewrite all the science books.
Posted by bluesteel 3 years ago
bluesteel
well, i look forward to another vote bomb....

@makh

You're generally not supposed to make up your mind before even finishing the debate. This site is about who debated better, not who presented arguments more consistent with what you already believed.
Posted by GarretKadeDupre 3 years ago
GarretKadeDupre
click on this link:

http://www.debate.org...
Posted by makhdoom5 3 years ago
makhdoom5
i also cant see the pics.
Posted by makhdoom5 3 years ago
makhdoom5
i dont think so its less then 10000 years.
lol
29 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Vote Placed by unitedandy 3 years ago
unitedandy
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Reasons for voting decision: Interesting debate. I give Pro credit for presenting a a decent case for a very difficult resolution. IMO, he probably did enough to create enough doubt to discount the amino acids point. However, Con's case was superior in most, if not every other point. To take one example, Pro's rebuttal of continental drift was expertly handled by Con, which alone negated the resolution. The only thing I would say to both debaters is that each case was perhaps guilty of underdevelopment at times, given the sheer number of arguments each side used. Good debate nonetheless.
Vote Placed by RebelRebelDixieDixie01 3 years ago
RebelRebelDixieDixie01
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Reasons for voting decision: Agreed with Con before and after the debate, Con made more convincing arguments.
Vote Placed by Subutai 3 years ago
Subutai
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro's case was built on a number of misunderstandings. Mainly, he tried to defend points that were well refuted by con, and he also had a horrible understanding of sources, using a double standard on con, especially when he used the Bible to provide substantiation to his arguments. Con used more reliable arguments from valid science instead of relying on invalid sources. Overall, pro never made a valid case in support of the resolution, and misinterpreted, and therefore did not effectively counter, con's arguments; pro did not uphold his BoP, and therefore he loses sources.
Vote Placed by machiavellian 3 years ago
machiavellian
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Reasons for voting decision: Bluesteel had more well-wrought arguments that solidified his point.
Vote Placed by funwiththoughts 3 years ago
funwiththoughts
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro loses conduct for his lame attempt to get it, as he attempted to pass off a paraphrase as a "fabricated quote". Arguments: Con took the lead in the last round by resurrecting several untouched arguments. Pro's claim to have refuted ANY radiometric dating arguments is sketchy as it relies on one person's work in contrast to the many different studies Con cited to prove his work. I give the supernova argument relatively credibility as it puts the age of the Earth at a mere 500 years old, which is younger than the Bible itself. Pro claims that Con's non-constant population argument by saying that it works at 1/4 of current rates but ignores the several times in history when the rate has been negative. Pro says that one study dates Adam to 300k years while another dates Adam to 200k years, but either estimate would, if true, put the Earth at over 10k years, making the point moot. I don't take the Bible as a reliable source.
Vote Placed by Kleptin 3 years ago
Kleptin
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Reasons for voting decision: Con did a good job in setting up the standard by which arguments should be valued and weighed. Pro's use of "Bible" as evidence is directed only to those who need not be convinced that the Bible is fact. Evidence is meant for everyone. Appeals to voters of a particular subsect constitutes bad conduct in my honest opinion, greater a breach than what Pro had accused Con of committing. Neither side produced enough of an exchange to truly show which arguments were of higher quality, I would have liked to see less arguments of higher quality and more rounds. Although I have an extremely strong bias against Creationism and specifically, YEC, I commend Pro for being able to defend against Con's rebuttals. Sources were poor for Pro, as to be expected from YEC "argument banks", but his understanding and defense were good when faced with pressure.
Vote Placed by MartinKauai 3 years ago
MartinKauai
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Reasons for voting decision: CON takes the cake for obvious reasons. PRO made too many unjustified claims, such as asserting that TalkOrigions.org quotes "itself" as a source, a claim that is obviously false with a simple visit to the website. CON continued to not only address the fallacies in PRO's arguments, such as the flawed and deceptive assumptions given in the Zircon dating example, but provided reliable counter arguments as well, using actual science as the standard. The fact PRO even suggested the bible was authoritative on scientific matters should raise alarms for anybody familiar with the scientific method.
Vote Placed by Benshapiro 3 years ago
Benshapiro
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro's counter-arguments were more convincing and found con to be self-affirming especially in the closing round.
Vote Placed by iamanatheistandthisiswhy 3 years ago
iamanatheistandthisiswhy
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Reasons for voting decision: I am astounded that Pro still is using these same disproved arguments over and over. Con wins argument points in this debate as the arguments were scientific and logical. Now to the bad side, I am awarding conduct and source points to Pro. I am doing this, as Con gave a source on amino acid dating which in fact mentions nothing about that on the page cited (yes, I looked). This is a big mistake and needs to get penalized.
Vote Placed by tulle 3 years ago
tulle
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro's weightiest argument was the Bible, which I don't believe to be a credible source. Pro's tree argument made no sense; as Con pointed out, just because a tree is younger than the earth (duh) doesn't mean the earth is less than 10000 years old. The rest of his arguments are seemingly refuted by bluesteel, as Pro cites non-experts, and none of his annotations seem to have the full reference at the end and there's no way of checking them. Con's point about population growth changing went unrefuted. Sources go to bluesteel.