Focus: News of interest about creation and evolution
Australian Trees(Research suggests we should count tree rings with much caution).
More than 4 centuries ago when some of Australia’s oldest living mountain ash were just saplings, Leonardo da Vinci recognized the annual character of tree rings.
But even da Vinci would probably arrive at the wrong age if he tried counting the rings in Australian gum trees. Drought, fire, non seasonal weather, plagues of leaf eating insects, cause Australian gum trees to add in or leave out tree rings as easily as they drop gum nuts.
Mr. Stephan Mucha of C.S.I.R.O. Division of Forestry Research, found that even monsoonal Darwin where summer and winter are vastly different, counting tree rings is beset with likely error.
ECOS November ‘80
Twinkle Twinkle Little What?
‘How do we know what the Universe is really like? We observe objects from far away, make analogies with conditions we know about, and build up a beautiful, self–consistent picture of what is going on ‘out there’. But it’s worth remembering that our image of the Universe is in a real sense ‘two dimensional’, we can never go around to the other side of an interesting object to view it from a different angle. As a result, our picture just might bear no more relation to the real universe than a Tom and Jerry cartoon does to the real world.
Geographical, January ‘81
Creation and Education
(International conference discusses creationism)
‘There has been little interest within the scientific community in anti–evolution arguments, which most scientists dismiss as nonsense on a par with the concerns of the flat earth society.’ But because anti–evolutionists can have damaging effects on science education, it is time for scientists to speak out. The session at this year’s meeting is just a beginning. The theme of next year’s American Association for Advancement of Science will be Science Education, and tentatively it will include discussions of ways to combat creationism and the teaching of religion as science.
Science News. January 10, 1981
Australian School Library Bill of Rights
School libraries are concerned with generating understanding of freedom and with the preservation of this freedom through the development of informed and responsible citizens. The responsibility of the school library is:‘To provide materials on opposing sides of controversial issues so that young citizens may develop under guidence the practice of critical reading and thinking.’
Australian School Library Association 69 Sutherland Rd., Armadale. Vic.3143.
Ed. NOTE: Told your Librarian about Creation Science materials lately?
Where Did the Moon Come From?
‘No single universally accepted theory has yet emerged to account for the moon’s origin,’ says Toksoz. An authority on lunar inner structure and the evolution of the solar system, Toksoz says on all three evolutionary theories fission, capture and condensation are still being debated. Each successfully accounts for some of what scientists now know about the origin of the moon, but none can explain enough.
One very critical fact that none of the evolutionary theories explains is the moon’s very low iron content. Consider the fission hypothesis: If indeed the moon split off from the earth, then how is it that the mother planet has such an enormous iron core while its putative daughter planet is so iron deficient? By the same token, in terms of the condensation hypothesis: If the moon and earth formed at the same time in the same space ‘neighbourhood’—and out of the same embryonic material—how did they turn out so different chemically?
(As in the days of Noah, modern catastrophes have after effects).
In the days following the eruption of Mt. St. Helen’s U.S.A., 1980, millions of bees died. The reason? The hairs on their bodies which collected pollen, collected volcanic ash from the air just as well. They became too heavy and could not return to their hives.
Science Digest. Jan–Feb 1981
How Do We Decide When Something is Becoming Extinct?
The Snail Darter is a tiny American fish believed by some U.S.A. authorities to be an endangered species—one on the way to extinction. Its discovery in the path of the $117,000,000 Tellico dam, Tennessee led to Congress having to grant exemption to the Dam authorities to enable them to build.
The fish was believed to exist only in the Little Tennessee River, but has now been found in four other eastern Tennessee water ways.
Telegraph, April 28, 1981
A Deep See!
(Discovering live specimens may force us to change conclusions deduced from fossil evidence only).
It looks like a cockroach, carries young in 14 pouches and bites. It is odd and a living source of what is going on in the ocean depths. It is 35cm long, has seven pairs of legs with sharp hooks, and a flesh cutting set of jaws. Its blood is blue, its eyes large and triangular, but do not appear to be light sensitive.
Of course! … It is a Bathynomeus Giganteus, the giant sea roach. Known since the late 19th Century from dead specimens, work has just begun using live specimens. One difficulty is that since the scientists have not yet duplicated the roaches deep sea habitat, nobody knows if their behaviour in the laboratory is normal or not, especially when they swim upside down. Much of what is suspected about bottom dwellers is based only on fossil evidence, so these live specimens will hopefully provide clues to living in deep inner space.
Science Digest, Jan–Feb 1981
Stop the Drift
The International Stop Continental Drift Society wades on against the academics who accept that the continents are drifting. Calling itself a small ‘non–prophet’ association it now has about 200 members some of whom are geologists genuinely opposed to the drift in Geology. They contribute to the Continental Drift Hit List, a section of the Associations newsletter which is otherwise filled with cartoons and jovial comment. The Hit List is usually the only other part of the newsletter meant to be serious.