In my opinion, in the area of evolution, various methods of extrapolation and even radiometric dating also fall short of “science”. YEC scientists can come up with examples of revisions of radiometric dating due to discovery of new fossils.
by Jonathan O’Brien
Using well-kn> own radioisotope technology, scientists dated the Santo Domingo rock formation in Argentina at 212 million years old. This happened to agree well with a nearby geologic formation that was also radiometrically dated.1 The radiometric date of the Santo Domingo formation also agreed with the dating based on fossil wood found entombed in the rock. This wood came from an extinct species of tree conventionally believed to have existed around 200 million years ago.
Well-preserved and abundant tracks were also found in the rock, similar in appearance to bird tracks. The scientists, who assert that the earth is billions of years old, concluded that the footprints must have been made by an unknown species of a small bird-like dinosaur, because according to Darwinian theory birds weren’t supposed to be around 212 million years ago. The results were accepted and published by the science journal Nature in 2002.
_But recently, a different group of long-age-believing scientists took a fresh look at the bird-like dinosaur footprints and concluded that they were indeed made by birds after all—actually, by the familiar sandpiper of today, a small bird common to wetlands, grasslands and coastal habitats around the world.2 Many people alive today have seen identical tracks in the sand along a river bank, or at the beach. Realising that something was very much amiss, the new group asked for further radiometric dating. The new radioisotope date they received gave an age of 37 million years—a massive 175 million years younger than the original date.2 The scientists were unperturbed, and the results were again accepted for publicatio_n. The “well-dated” Los Colorados formation, to quote the scientists. They say this rock formation is more than 200 million years old. See Melchor, R.N., de Valais, S., and Genise, J.F., Bird-like fossil footprints from the Late Triassic, Nature 417(6892):936–938, 27 June 2002. Return to text
Melchor, R.N., Buchwaldt, R., and Bowring, S., A late Eocene date for Late Triassic bird tracks, Nature 495(7441):E1–E2, 21 March 2013. Return to text
In the first dating, basalt (a volcanic rock) interbedded within the sedimentary rock formation was dated using the 40Ar/39Ar method and yielded an ‘age’ of 212.5 ± 7.0 million years. In the second, zircon crystals derived from tuff rock (another type of volcanic rock), also interbedded within the sedimentary rock, were dated using the weighted mean 206Pb/238U method, and yielded an ‘age’ of 37 million years old. See Ref. 2 and Ref. 4. Return to text
Vizan, H. et al., Geological setting and paleomagnetism of the Eocene red beds of Laguna Brava Formation (Quebrada Santo Domingo, northwestern Argentina), Tectonophysics 583:105–123, 2013. The Santo Domingo formation has been redesignated as two formations in recent years. Part of it is now called the Laguna Brava formation. (http://creation.com/radiometric-backflip)
Standards are good, as long as there are not double standards. Generalizations are usually what cause the problem. When we have evidence of changes of radiometric dating (not because the GC is inaccurate, but for other reasons), then skepticism ought to be expected.
It would be valuable to realize that evolution also often falls short of science. The irony is that often the “scientists” don’t realize it.
The seven “standards” are nebulous and self-evident at the same time. But the accuracy of claims, “proving what they claim”, falsifying alternatives, quoting error bars, peer review, replicating results… all of these are valuable, while at the same time have also been problematic for evolutionists who have had to revise theories. When a date is changed from 212 million to 37 million, both dates supported by peer review, error bars, and presumable replication, and only changed after discovery of a fossil footprint, then we know it is not the methods that are at fault, but the theory itself. (If not, then it is somewhat hypocritical to suggest that only YEC are to be held accountable for scientific method, etc.)