REPLY #15 TO
"EVOLUTION VS. CREATIONISM"
are parts of the original essay (or a subsequent reply) to which the respondent has directed his comments.
prefaced by (R) are those of the respondent and are presented unedited.
My replies appear under the respondent's comments in blue text
and are prefaced by my initials (MB)
(R) Now it's my turn to ask you a question. You claim to have studied
evolution quite extensively, to arrive at your belief, so you must be
aware of the well known evolutionists who are abandoning the theory,
primarily due to the problems presented by the complexities of micro
biology. See the end of my letter. My question is much more simple.
(MB) Looking ahead to the end of your letter, the "well-known evolutionists" to
whom you refer are the infamous "two Michaels" -- Denton and Behe -- neither of
whom are actually evolutionists. Behe is a biochemist, by training, but a
Creationist by belief and was a participant in a televised debate aired on PBS
that pitted Creationists against evolutionists. Denton's book is a
poorly-received compilation of 20 years of Creationist objections to evolution
and science. I'll have more to say about them later in this reply.
(R) As an evolutionist, you would agree that the oceans must be approx.
3 billion years old in order for any hope of evolution to exist.
(MB) That's not quite an accurate statement. Evolution is a process which is
separate from the origin of life as we know it in the oceans of Earth. The time
span you mentioned is necessary only for life to have evolved from its origins
into the multiplicity and complexity of species we observe today. Evolution
itself would still have been an ongoing process right from the first time that
the first organism reproduced.
(R) The problem arises from a Sandia National Laboratory (SNL) study examining
salt levels in the ocean. Knowing the volume of the ocean and the level of
increasing salinity, the annual input of salt is presently 450 million tons per
year. They then subtracted 450 million tons of salt per year until the oceans
would be pure water. Using this calculation the age of the oceans would be 42
million years, maximum.
(MB) Whoever tried to misinterpret the Sandia study needs to go back to his
grade school mathematics class. If the present input of salt is 450 million
tons per year, taking 450 million tons per year away just leaves the ocean with
its original salt content. It does not reduce the ocean to fresh water over any
imagined length of time. After all, X + 450 - 450 = X, right?
The "salt in the ocean" argument of Creationism has been conclusively
refuted since at least 1954, when V. M. Goldschmidt (in "Geochemistry")
published the results of a study that proves that the salt content of the oceans
is in stasis.
In addition, Creationists themselves have discounted the "salt in the ocean"
argument since at least 1966. In that year, Creationist Melvin Cook wrote in
his book "Prehistory and Earth Models" that ...
"The validity of the application of total salt in the ocean in the
determination of age turned out to have a very simple answer in the fact
shown by Goldschmidt (1954) that it is in steady state and therefore
useless as a means of determining the age of the oceans."
(R) Of course this answer is unacceptable from an evolutionary mind set, so the
argument was presented that input levels were much lower in the past and output
levels (primarily through evaporation) were much higher in the past.
(MB) You've noticed an inherent flaw in most shaky speculations. Without any
evidence to support such arguments, they can never become anything more than
conjecture. Basing a conclusion upon conjecture is always fraught with peril.
In this case, the Creationists are inserting a conjecture into a misinterpreted
set of data and bolstering the conclusion with bogus mathematics. The result is
an argument that refutes itself.
(R) (so much for a uniformitarian explanation)
(MB) Actually, an ocean in stasis (as Goldschmidt showed) would conform more to
the uniformitarian model.
(R) With these criteria in mind the calculation
was modified to allow for the highest output levels and the lowest input
levels of salt, found in the geological record, to be a constant
throughout time (in other words, the best of both worlds which is never
supported geologically) and the maximum age of the ocean was then
increased to 62 million years, until pure water is reached.
(MB) Found *where* in the geological record? Certainly, any scientist would
know that the majority of removed salts would be combined with other minerals
and would not show up in any geological record. This argument also assumes that
the total amount of salts on land and sea has been increasing over the age of
the planet and this simply isn't (and can't be) the case. Salts only move from
one place to another.
(R) My question for you is how can you support a theory that is unable to answer
a question that is the foundation for the ENTIRE evolutionary mind set, and that
is the age of the oceans.
(MB) My answer to you is that evolution theory doesn't rely on bogus mathematics
and misinterpreted data for its survival. Also, how do you justify a claim that
the age of the oceans is the foundation for the ENTIRE evolutionary mindset when
that data is only a very small part of the total data which supports
(R) It is impossible for the oceans to have existed for any length of time
without salt input from erosion and the evolutionary idea of a 3 billion year
old ocean is far, far older than can be squeezed out of the calculations even
when every conceivable way to lengthen the time frame was used. Source: Austin,
S.A. and D.R. Humphreys - "The seas missing salt" SNL scientists.
(MB) Science has known for decades that there is no such thing as "missing
salt". Creationists need to learn the basic cycles of mineral deposition and
removal that take place in the oceans. BTW, salt is not the only mineral for
which the Creationists have tried to use a similar "missing mineral" argument
and those arguments have all been conclusively refuted, as well.
(R) Other books you may want to investigate, written by evolutionists (who don't
believe in God by the way) are: Evolution: a theory in crisis - Michael Denton
and Darwin's Black Box - Michael Behe.
(MB) How can you say that neither Denton nor Behe believes in God? The major
argument in Behe's book seeks to demonstrate that "irreducible complexity" of
certain structures in living organisms are proof of intelligent design by an
external Creator. If that's not "God", then who/what is it? Here is a link to
some detailed criticism of
Denton supports the Creationist arguments that are based upon Biblical
literalism. Who/what is the main entity featured in the Bible? Here is a link
to some detailed criticism
of Denton's book.
(R) The second in particular addresses the issue of microbiology and
biochemistry and that the chemistry at that level is irreducible and requires
numerous systems to coexist in order for any of them to exist.
(MB) Behe's aforementioned participation in the televised PBS debate gave him a
forum to promote the points made in his book. He failed rather miserably. Here
is a link to a transcript of the PBS debate that is maintained on my site.
(R) These and other books are presenting questions that are much harder for
evolutionists to answer than the question of Christ's genealogy.
(MB) None of these books have ever presented a single question that hasn't been
conclusively refuted over and over and over again -- sometimes for several
decades. Actually, Christ's genealogy is harder to refute since there's more
hard evidence with which to refute Creationism.
(R) Thanks for your time and the brain exercise.
(MB) Thanks for your questions. I enjoy the time spent researching, verifying
and posting the answers to any questions.