Exploring abrupt climate change induced by comets and asteroids during human history

Kloosterman: A man before his time



Trevor Palmer and the fine folks across the pond at the Society for Interdisciplinary Studies were thoughtful to contribute a newly translated 2000 monograph by Tusk favorite, Dutchman Han Kloosterman. It is a wonderfully prescient and learned piece that places Kloosterman’s field evidence (the Usselo layer) into centuries of context for catastrophic geology.

The publication was a year before Firestone and Topping’s article in The Mammoth Trumpet presenting evidence for an ice age catastrophe and a full seven years before Firestone and 22 others’ seminal paper in PNAS: Evidence for an extraterrestrial impact 12,900 years ago that contributed to the megafaunal extinctions and the Younger Dryas cooling. As elegantly acknowledged by Kloosterman, however, his paper follows Whiston’s work by 304 years, Cuvier by 168 years, and — I would add — Plato by 2348 years.

But Kloosterman includes something more I find compelling and little discussed in the recent or old school literature: The ice age cataclysm served to catalyze modern civilization. As Kloosterman concludes:

…If the catastrophic events had not occurred, we would still be painting mammoths, bison, and rhinoceroses and we would still be eating roasted reindeer meat.

I have always believed that this possibility undermines the ‘improbability’ argument against such a recent cosmic impact cited by Boslough and others (See 2.3). From Boslough’s temporally provincial point of view ‘we’ are technologically and culturally isolated from the YD impact — not created by it. But if Kloosterman is right, The Bos and his technological toys are themselves the extraordinary evidence for the extraordinary claim The Bos rejects.

83 Responses

  1. Thank you for publishing the Kloosterman article.
    It is very thought provoking: Indeed, “Where are the stumps?”
    If anyone still wonders, I can explain. And also hypothesize another puzzling straification..:)

  2. I do have some comments on the paper…

    This was written in 2000, at a time when the ice dam failure at Lake Agassiz was assumed to be correct and connected to the climate change. In fact, the YD temperature drop ws seen as a model for the movie “The Day After Tomorrow” and scenarios just like it.

    Han wrote (translated correctly, I assume!) —
    “The end of the last ice age is the time in which the North American and the Scandinavian ice caps rapidly melted and the sea level rose, in which the large circumglacial lakes in North America ruptured and caused large floods, in which in Europe the Late Palaeolithic culture, especially well known from France and northern Spain, suddenly came to an end…

    Ask Rodney Chilton about this whole shebang and he will explain to you that such ws not the case. As evidence came in it turned out that the failure at Lake Agassiz could not have caused the YD cold period by screwing with the oceanic conveyor belt.

    Why not? Because the southern edge of the ice did not melt back far enough SOON enough.

    In addition, it is NOT a foregone conclusion that Lake Agassiz actually emptied out suddenly, even though a good number of climate dudes have been pushing the Mackensie River>Arctic Ocean outlfow route – which they seemingly don’t realize empties the cold fresh water into an even COLDER ocean and on the opposite end of that ocean from the point east of Iceland. I’ve been facepalming for quite a while over that.

    The no-flood scenario? See http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/10/05/evaporation-not-outflow-drained-ancient-lake-agassiz-during-the-younger-dryas/ — “Evaporation, not outflow, drained ancient Lake Agassiz during the Younger Dryas”.

    That doesn’t mean that that argument wins the day – but there are two scenarios on the table, not just the one everyone has heard of. I am not crazy about some of the assertions made in the WUWT article. The website has no agenda or preferred side in whatever debate exists. I think that both sides have a long way to go to settle things.

    As to the other bold phrase, “in Europe the Late Palaeolithic culture, especially well known from France and northern Spain, suddenly came to an end,” is something I’d not heard of before. GOOD! I get to learn something new! Gotta google it and see what I’ve been missing…

  3. From Han’s paper: “After some catastrophic event, however, probably a comet impact which caused impact quakes, tsunamis, a global conflagration and volcanic eruptions, the rate of development changed radically.

    The amount of added energy to accomplish these very physical changes is mind-boggling. Don’t ask me to calculate it; it’s over my head, I am certain.

    Yes, the passage of the ET object would have the capacity to ignite conflagrations. To do this ion a scale necessary to put a black mat all around the 50 million square kilometers of currently known would require an immense amount of infra-red energy, all along its path.

    I do have a question about the length of its path. A steep entry impacts harder, but its path is inversely proportional to the impacting force vector. Chelyabinsk came in at 20° downward angle and had a path about 260 km or so from the Brightening Point to Lake Chebarkul. That represents only about 2.4 degrees of wrap around on the planet. Even though 20° downward is a shallow angle, the path really was quite short. From the moment it became visible, anyway.

    So, it remains to be worked out how the passing of an ET object could ignite forests and fields over a long path and off to each side very far. It’s ability to ignite is directly proportional to its closeness to the ground, so both the downward angle and the “side-scan” of it limit the swath of ground with sufficient radiant energy. The path can only be one swath per ET object.

    Does this suggest the real possibility that multiple objects arrived at the YDB? If not then it is difficult for me to understand how places far away from the entry path in the atmosphere could do the conflagration thing. Perhaps there are mechanisms other than the direct radiant energy that could take part in igniting other parts of the world. Tinder flying/floating through the air? Super-heated ejecta? I don’t see an obvious mechanism yet.

    At the same time, with all those changes, they are changes in energy – kinetic and heat energy, with some chemical energy, too.

    My main thinking direction is that the total energy to cause the changes had to be much more than could possibly be accounted for internal Earth system processes. To me this points away from any terrestrial causes and leaves only an ET as a possibility. But even for the ET object, it demands magnitudes more energy injected into the system than Chelyabinsk or Tunguska did.

    With the extinction event reaching into Eurasia – all the way to the Arctic coast of Siberia – plus all the way down to northern South America, the sie of the event seems probably a good percentage of the Chicxulub K-T boundary impactor. 25-40% of that impactor’s total energy input into Earth’s energy system sounds like a ballpark number that wouldn’t be far off. Chicxulub killed off all the dinosaurs, and the YDB killed off about 100 species in both hemisphere.

    It sounds like the idea of an object not terribly much bigger than Tunguska is not going to carry the day. Not from what numbers are floating around in my head…

    The YDB impact was a BIG damned event, folks.

  4. Steve: Don’t overlook the high probability of a significant Axial Tilt or wobble, which could easily be caused by a “near miss”. In recent years we have had proof of how easily the Axis is disturbed. (Indonesian earthquake)

  5. Steve : “As to the other bold phrase, “in Europe the Late Palaeolithic culture, especially well known from France and northern Spain, suddenly came to an end,” is something I’d not heard of before. GOOD! I get to learn something new! Gotta google it and see what I’ve been missing…”

    Sounds like that Cave Art video I was describing recently, they were saying that the art completely stopped around that time (-16KBP IIRC) and then Art doesn’t show up till Gobekli Tepe in stone releafs. Granted, there must be more that we are unaware of, but that is what they said. Then again who would be doing art when your trying to survive?

  6. Steve here is a freebe:
    >”It sounds like the idea of an object not terribly much bigger than Tunguska is not going to carry the day. Not from what numbers are floating around in my head…”<
    You are certainly right. However, consider an event like "Schumacher Levy 9"…And then compare that to pumping the brakes of a car.
    The result could be a Globe girdling river of water and atmosphere.

  7. Paul –

    SL9 had 20 fragments, of which 3 were 1 km or slightly larger. In Jupiter’s surface gravity (about twice that of Earth), those each had plumes as big as the entire Earth. Had that happened on Earth, a few things to consider…
    1. None of those made it to the surface of Jupiter
    2. Jupiter’s greater intrinsic gravity accelearted the fragments much more than Earth could, so their final velocities was greater than hitting on Earth would have been
    3. With Earth’s lower intrinsic gravity the likelihood of fragmenting on its previous pass (as happened with SL9) was much lower, so SL9 may have come entered our atmosphere in one piece. THAT would have been an a** kicker for us.

    …No idea what you could possibly mean by “a Globe girdling river of water and atmosphere.

    …”Steve: Don’t overlook the high probability of a significant Axial Tilt or wobble, which could easily be caused by a “near miss”.

    Methinks that your idea of “high probability” and mine are quite different. I am probably as much pro-tilt as anyone here, but a near-miss idea I think is totally untenable. It was untenable when Velikovsky proposed it, and it is still untenable when the EU people throw it about. Someone has no idea of the total energy involved to accomplish a tilt. I agree that an external force of some sort is much more likely, rather than internal forcings. But the energy delivery from a “near miss” (whatever that vague term could mean) is vastly lower than from a “non miss”. My off-the-cuff estimate of the odds of a near-miss doing ANYTHING but perturbing the orbit is about 1 in INFINITY-minus-1.

  8. Bard: “Then again who would be doing art when your trying to survive?”

    Not the most accurate assessment of humans and art, IMO.

    I thought that was at the very heart of the cave paintings – by people who WERE trying to survive. Whether in the orthodox view of humans ascending from apes in one linear flow, or by survivors of a civilization-ending impact event, the people didn’t live in caves because there were no vacancies on Park Avenue or on the Gold Coast of Chicago.

    So, obviously they WERE doing art when they were trying to survive.

    We’ve all heard of men living in shacks and making art out of junk.

  9. Among the many gems in Han’s VERY educational polemic (I could pick so many…) is this:
    “While excavating a tunnel hole near Velsen, west of Amsterdam, in the mid-1950s, a multidisciplinary team of specialists studied the sediments and the Usselo Layer was found at a depth of eighteen metres, by a supervisor.”

    …I am looking into the European Sand Belt, in good part because if Han. It extends from the Dutch coast near Rotterdam (with tidbits across the North Sea in Britain) to Russia, and past Moscow. If you’ve seen any of the photos of it Han’s Usselo Layer, you can see that that deposit ABOVE the Usselo Layer is one solid deposit, no layers in it. Han calls it a sediment. I am not so sure. Sediments are laid gently down in calm waters, of sand and/or clay particles that drift down and settle on the bottom. They are light enough that if the water flows over them even once settled, they can and do get re-floated. In lakes this settling are called varves, and they form (ALWAYS horizontal) layers/bands, like we are used to seeing in sedimentary rocks. The individual layers are distinguishable because of the seasons; rainy seasons deposit more, dry seasons less. This is similar to the tree rings, which represent growth seasons and non-growth seasons. With the Usselo Layer Han and others are not talking about multiple layers, but only ONE layer (though I am sure that up on top, near the surface at Usselo and elsewhere, there are some sediment layers from seasonal processes).

    But that upper sedimentation is another issue. THIS issue is ONE layer, 18 meters thick.

    A. How do we account for 18 FREAKING METERS (59 FEET!) of ONE layer????? What possible kind of uniformitarian process could possibly lay down a non-layered mass of sandy soil (and sandy it is) 18 meters thick????? HOW do you get calm waters with enough silt in it to leave behind 18 meters???

    Supposing the sand was suspended in the water, in a slurry – where did the sand come from and why was it in the water? Water can carry sand in a slurry for some distance, but only while it is agitated and turbulent. As soon as the water stops moving, the sand begins to settle out and falls (slowly) to the surface below. If the sand-water mix were 50% then the depth of the water needed to be 118 feet deep (36 meters). If it was any more liquified, then that needed depth goes UP.

    Usselo is a village and its elevation is only 29 meters (95 feet). So my hypothesized water depth of 36 meters (118 feet) is actually deeper than Usselo. The water would have extended all the way to the coast – 36 meters deep.

    Sea level rise? No. That much water is ABOVE current sea level, and in the entire Holocene and late Pleistocene the sea level was LESS than current levels, not MORE.

    How could water extend over that great area just from the coast to Usselo?

    B. How could this happen right down to the current shoreline? Coasts do not have calm waters bearing sandy particles enough to lay down 18 meters thick, or even FIVE meters thick. Shorelines like Holland’s are turbulent.
    C. “Oh, by Rotterdam,” some would say, are the mouths of the Rhine, and it would be like the Nile floods in the springtime. Except, sorry, Usselo itself is on the other side of Holland, near the German border, and nowhere near Rotterdam. To boot, how does one deposit sand from the Rhine spring floods all the way into Russia? And why are there not such deposit layers for each spring’s floods?

    C. At the TIME of the Usselo boundary – in the Allerod if I am not mistaken, sea levels were actually something like 72 meters lower than now. Usselo then would have been 72+29 meters = 101 meters (331 feet). Would the water then have had to be 36 meters higher than THAT? 137 meters high? Minimum?

    Thinking of this water is causing me a brain pain. I honestly can’t envision that much water just SITTING there (so that the silt could stop and settle out). Something ELSE had to have been going on. Uniformitarian processes fail to explain it.

    Don’t take my word for any of this. Think about it yourselves. See what makes sense to YOU.

  10. As you might be able to tell, I am gobsmacked not just by the charcoal layer at the Usselo Horizon (and I AM), but also by the thick layers above AND below the charcoal layer that is the Usselo Layer. And the two are of very different colors, too. So THAT also needs to have a sane explanation that doesn’t do a disappearing act of ANY of it in the literature. And in the MINDS.

    Hahaha – Han screams about the disappearing of things. Scientists do it all the time. ANY time they look at a totality of evidence, each of them assigns greater authority to some and less to other – and NONE to some. We tend to call it “sweeping it under the carpet”. But from what I’ve seen the Disappearing Broom is always present. No two scientistific groups seem to weight the pieces of evidence similarly. Every one of them tells in their papers that SOME evidence is important and some isn’t. And by weighting differently, they bloody well come up with different interpretations.

    That is how there can be 5 or 6 competing hypotheses to “explain” the Libyan Desert Glass, for example. EACH different group downgrades the evidence other groups assign much importance to.

    It’s like the 8 blind men and the elephant.

  11. Thank you for your response, which I shall try to rebut later.
    Your annalogy of the ‘blind men and the elephant’ is very apt.
    You do realize that the statistically improbable, thick deposits of various transported materials, do occur in many parts of the world.
    Given current models of deposition rates, limestone deposits are the most obvious questionmarks. There are many things about our world, which we can only guess about. There are also huge and thick sandstone and shale deposits, whose formation would require relative stability that defies the generation of the mass of particles to create and sort them.

  12. BTW…

    A major paper by Han on the Usselo Layer is “The Usselo Horizon, a Worldwide Charcoal-Rich Layer of Alleröd Age”, available at http://www.catastrophist.org/home/usselo-2002/

    Merry Xmas to all, especially to Han, from sunny Mexico. Have a great holiday week!

    Let’s see if somehow we can’t kick some butt in the coming year…

  13. Han’s Usselo Layer is kind of all about carbon at that time.

    I also found what is a non-peer-reviewd paper from Depaul University from 2012, https://las.depaul.edu/research/undergraduate/Documents/2008Volume1.pdf#page=33, entitled Search for Impact Triggered Fires at the End Pleistocene by one Adrienne Stich.

    Rocks from the End Pleistocene (12,500 ya), which witnessed the extinction of thirty-three North American land mammals, were analyzed for the presence of soot from possible impact-triggered fires. Initial analysis found evidence for fires at one geographic site; the search for soot at additional End Pleistocene sites is underway.”

    She writes:

    High amounts of carbon, most in the form of soot, were later found at the K/T boundary by Wolbach et al.3 At the time, the source of the carbon was unknown but hypothesized to include fragments of the meteorite that impacted the earth, fossil carbon from the crater formed by the impact, and wildfires triggered by the impact.

    Further analysis ruled out the meteoritic component and work at more sites led to the conclusion that there were widespread fires at the K/T boundary, likely triggered by the impact.

    In my comment above, I voice concerns if a fly-by of a low-angle meteor could, by radiant heat, cause widespread conflagrations. The Earth being a sphere, an inbound impactor can only have so much wrap-around. In addition its swath width can only reach out so far.

    But I wasn’t discounting other means of spreading the fires – with the main suspect being ejecta. Materials at the target site reach over 2,000°C, as spelled out in some of the YDB team papers, temps too high to have been created by terrestrial processes. I haven’t seen much discussion here or elsewhere about ejecta and what temperatures the ejecta might have away from the impact site.

    Davias at cintos.com has proposed the time of flight of ejecta from a Saginaw Bay impact as being about 5.7 minutes. Let’s make a long story short and suggest that the ejacta was not able to shed much heat energy in such a short time, and that subsequently the ejecta would be able to ignite fires far beyond the swath of the incoming body.

    Now, my spreadsheet work on the Carlina bays suggested that the Saginaw-Carlina-bay connection is real and that the ejecta to the sides was lofted within a very narrow upward conical “sheet”, allowing well over 90% of the ejecta to land within a 100-kilometer wide arc at a distance of about 1200 km away from the initial impact.

    This suggests that side ejecta (secondary ejecta) would only have been able to ignite fires in that narrow band. So, that makes us look for other ejecta. Primary ejecta, per Peter Schultz’s hyper-velocity impact experiments doesn’t go to the side, but more straight up and down range. I don’t know much about this part of the ejecta, but I guess that would be my area of inquiry, when I can get to it. (Actually, I hope someone else is working on this, too…)

    If the primary ejecta fails to give a connection with conflagrations, then what might be left? To my satisfaction it seems that radiant heat seems out of the mix, because of the short and narrow swath of a body within the atmosphere.

    So, I guess this all might lead us to conclude more definitively that there would have to have been multiple impactors.

  14. Steve Garcia; That ties to my previous point of a possible Schumacher/Levy type of debris train. There is no need to assume that Earth’s gravity was responsible for the fragmentation of this postulated comet. One of my concerns about the Kloosterman Article is the use of Fred Hoyle’s proposal of a 1600 year orbital cycle. (that table seems somewhat “forced”. Perhaps someone better informed could comment on that?)
    One thing to consider about the wide distribution of the “charcoal layer” is that charcoal and wood ash are very light and fragile. If the dating of this layer is tight around the world, then there must have been a large amount of airborn material to precipitate on top of it as a covering layer. Otherwise atmospheric and aluvial forces would have destroyed the evidence.

  15. Paul –

    Yeah, actually there IS a need to assume that the Earth’s gravity was responsible for the fragmentation. Close passes are the main reason (though not the only one) for fragmentation. Which is exactly what happened to SL9. But there is another reality that I read about decades ago:

    When a small body makes a close encounter with a planet, the orbit of the smaller object is changed in a way that makes it highly probable that the small object will make another close fly-by or even hit the planet.

    That is also exactly what happened to SL9 – a close fly-by and a return very quickly.

    A planet’s solid diameter is immensely smaller than the very much larger spherical diameter of the gravity well of that planet. Ergo, it has to be massively more likely that a small object will be captured FIRST, rather than make a beeline straight into the planet’s surface on the first pass.

    And what it also strongly implies is that the smaller object will almost certainly have been captured in the gravity well of the planet. That is how I read it all. And if the object – fragmented or not – now is captured by Earth, then it is unlikely to be making a close fragmentation-inducing encounter with Jupiter or another planet. Not without being captured by THAT planet.

    Can it be thrown toward Jupiter and be fragmented by Jove? Jupiter can only be in one place along its 12-year orbit, so the possibility of a small object being thrown into an intercept orbit with Jupiter is very small. Even if it gets out to Jupiter’s orbit, the chances of Jupiter being at the right place at the right time is very small, especially for the very few orbits before impacting Earth. Jupiter is much more likely to be on the other side of the solar system at that time.

  16. Paul –

    I am somewhat in agreement with you about the charcoal and ash thing, for perhaps different reasons.

    First, the ash and soot and such will not stay in the stratosphere for all THAT long. From volcanoes we know that this period is only a few years. (But those few years DO actually constrain the dating to be pretty tight. At least I myself consider perhaps 5-10 years tops as being a tight window.)

    My problem would be “How do the fires across multiple continents start in the first place?” My previous comments had to do with how short the atmospheric path of an incoming object is, and how narrow the swath will be. Thus a single incoming object and its radiant heat can only ignite a pretty damned small area. Conflagrations on several continents seems to need three things, at least: 1.) Multiple objects, 2.) Very large objects to induce enough radiant energy and stay intact long enough to get close enough to the ground, and 3.) A very low entry angle, so that the in-atmosphere path is long and has some wrap-around WHILE IT IS LOW.

    The Chelyabinsk meteor did have a low angle of entry, and it DID put out radiant energy. Some people even got “meteor burn” from what I’ve read. But it exploded to high – I’ve seen numbers of 23 km to 29 km high. The swath was about 30-40 km to the side, for a path less than 100 km long. To have gotten much lower it needed to be much larger, to prevent disintegration too early.

    I suppose that had it gotten down to about 5-8 km high it might have done some serious ignition. Jonny and the other experts can probably tell us numbers.

    But that only does Chelyabinsk Oblast. Now, how does a single object do, say, The Black Forest, or the state of Maine? It isn’t going to happen.

    To me, the soot in far-flung locations seems to be a circumstantial case for multiples. But if the breakup happened AFTER atmospheric entry, the paths would be too localized within a small area. To spread the conflagration, the breakup seems to me to need to happen earlier in its orbit – to spread the objects out in time, like happened with SL9. Its fragments hit over several DAYS.

  17. “YDB” is a serious error, a hypothesis made into a dogma. At Huizen and at Lutterzand I find a thin layer (a few cms) of peat on top of the UL, so the bitter cold of the Dryas-III cannot have started right after the Usselo Event, which must be late Alleroed.
    And what if, on palynological grounds, this peat is correlatable with the Alleroed of Denmark? Then it is even older.

    Paul Repstock, are you interested in “poleshifts” of just cms, or in greater ones?

    Steve, a “Globe girdling river of water” is a Global Flood. Don’t be a hypocrite, you’ve heard about it. “Everybody” tells about it, with a density of stories in S.America and in insular E.Asia.
    Compare with Laj et al, Nature 1984.
    By all means, read Warlow and Flodmark before you say anything.

    Steve, “someone has no idea of the total energy involved to accomplish a tilt (dammit! – sounds like Slabinski, the Boslough of the 1980s).

    Steve, the Dryas III has layers, and has the same geographical extension as the Dryas II.

  18. Han –

    Sorry I am not up on S American accounts.

    Paul’s “globe girdling river of water” he tied in with SL9. My take on SL9 is that if we get hit by a train of fragments that size, the globe girdling water is the least of our problems.

    As to Warlow, from a physics standpoint, I think Warlow was uneducated in physics. Just as Hapgood’s mathematician was. Warlow SOUNDS reasonable, but in the nitty gritty he got it wrong. IMHO. The devil is in the details. I have his book and read it cover to cover twice. I think Warlow got it wrong. I don’t pretend to be an expert on Warlow, because when he missed the boat, I don’t feel obligated to memorize all of the rest of it.

    And comparing me to Boslough is a harsh cut.

    If you could say specifically what depth you think the slippage happened on, you are a better man than I am right now. I’ve asked you before to give some idea. Pointing me at Warlow didn’t help; he missed the boat. Flodmark I have not been able to get anything on, so that one is a strikeout. Be aware: Getting books here is super expensive and dodgy.

    I am thinking at some level at the bottom of the aesthenosphere, but I have a LOT of work to do before I can go further with that. And without knowing how much total mass and the rheology of it all – which I am hoping to determine before too long – no one can put a number to how much energy. And to know the rheology one has to try to start with all the guessed at values for what is going on down there. Everything I have had access to tells me it is all a lot of nearly total unknowns. The work that has been done on any of that to me is worthless so far. IMHO. I wish it wasn’t. I can’t believe how much geology on all that is just people interpreting seismograph output and such. Their work seems to me to be like reading tea leaves – and WAAAY too much gradualism. It is hard to glean anything of value. SO FAR. I am hopeful, but have no idea where it goes from here. I honestly don’t assign any confidence in what I’ve found so far. Sorry I don’t have my own geology lab.

    At the present I am just trying to determine what is possible. With the large uncertainty in so much, where it goes in the future, I don’t know. I am working in various aspects of all of it, and Warlow is not in the picture. My own shift stuff is better than his, but it is still a work in progress. Without quantifying it all, nothing else matters. That is my opinion.

    I can only work on so much at a time.

  19. Han –

    Damned near everything I’ve found on the mantle and aesthenosphere material characteristics is super vague.

    Not having access through an institution is a BIG handicap. The rheology seems to me to be the crux: At what stress level does the material begin to act like a fluid?

  20. It is not a matter of solid sliding over solid, with all the friction and breakaway. Without yet knowing at what depth, the mass cannot be calculated. Without the mass value, the momentum required cannot be calculated. Then all the energy losses, the amount of movement being discussed, etc.

  21. I do have a problem with any single body causing world-girdling conflagration, whether the burning is continuous or spotty. I tie the Carolina bays in with a Great Lakes impact site, probably Saginaw Bay. And there does not seem to be any soot layer where the ejecta landed in the CBs. If it didn’t happen in that case – with ejecta flying 1200 kms – then it seems unlikely that lofted ejecta was a likely source of ignition. I’d like it to be, but so far I don’t find anything to make that a good candidate.

    So, if it was not a single low-angle impactor, and it also wasn’t ejecta, what is left? Multiples? With multiples, by randomness 70% of the fragments will be oceanic impacts. So no igniter material there. Would the 30% “other” impacts do it?

  22. Han, in your Catastrophist Manifesto***, you say,

    Today’s breakthrough will also begin making a rapprochement in a schism that exists since the end of Romanticism, about 1860 – the greatest Kultursturz in the West since Christianity brutally suppressed intellectual and religious freedom in the Roman and Hellenistic worlds.

    This schism pitted against each other, sometimes violently, academic geology (and biology, archaeology, history, mythology) and the so-called lunatic fringe, marginalised by the uniformitarian establishment – Atlantologists, pole-shifters, Velikovskians, Theosophists, etc. Perhaps the 2005 discoveries will induce the “lunatic fringe” to start thinking more critically. And perhaps they will induce the academic geologists to start thinking. If so, we can look forward to the next breakthrough in rather less than another quarter of a century.

    I give Velikovsky credit for some things, but his conclusions I don’t agree with.

    Theosophists I don’t give any credence to, and I think that including them just gives fodder for the uniformitarians, who then wrap all neo-catastrophism in with religion and cults. To me they are silly season.

    I am open – for good reason – to Atlantis, but I have been pointing out that the name needs to be understood. Plato in the Timeaus states unequivocally that the names in his account that sound Greek (which the name Atlantis does) are translations from the Egyptian, which he also states are translations. So “Atlantis” is a double-translation. In other words, his nation-state was NOT named Atlantis – that was the Greek-ified name. And we may never learn what it actually was. I’d suggest that Tartessos/Tarshish may be it, but that is just a starting point for inquiry.

    Pole-shifters? Hmmm. . .

    Are the lunatic fringe looking at it all “more critically”? I’d say that my doubts about Warlow are, in themselves, critical. And, right or wrong, I am going in exactly the direction you suggest might happen – the more critical direction. And certainly not just me.

  23. Steve, “someone has no idea of the energy involved to accomplish a tilt”. If “everybody” tells me it happened, I don’t need Peter Warlow’s mathematics. The Inuit, the Aboriginals, the Pygmees of Africa and Asia, etc.etc., and the final proof was found at Steens Mountain, a reversal lasting just 10 or 15 days.
    And then I don’t need a mathematian to tell me that the oceans start sloshing – megatsunamis.
    The slippage can clearly happen only on the Liquid Core / Mantle interface, and please don’t come with any Hapgood nonsense.

  24. There is much talk about the Carolina bay sands by people who don’t know the constituents or the geographical distribution thereof. That’s like talking about a person’s ethnic ancestry without doing a DNA test. You need to know the light minerals, 99%, and especially the 1% of heavies.
    Not knowing them transforms talk into blablah.

  25. Han –

    I hear you. But I think that if it happened, the numbers should show first of all, that it is POSSIBLE. It would be a matter of energy transference. And if it happened, there MUST be physical evidence of it.

    …I am quite certain, though, that a mantle-core interface slippage means WAY too much mass for an impactor to move. The mantle is liquid all the way up. I have to think it was up near the aesthenosphere. The shock of the impact gets dispersed the farther down it goes, making lower down much more difficult to break loose. The energy density is the inverse square of the distance/depth. In addition, the vector direction will get too big of a vertical component and a slippage needs a horizontal vector to initiate the breakaway. I could be wrong, but I really don’t think so. Mass and inertia are big freaking deals in this.

    …We both know that the uniformitarians aren’t going to accept ancient accounts. It is good that some of us think it did happen or that the historical evidence argues strongly for it. But science is quantification. Hell, I also believe the accounts. I just don’t think they can possibly be something that is ever going to convince anyone. Physics will, if anything can.

    …You said it yourself:

    Perhaps the 2005 discoveries will induce the “lunatic fringe” to start thinking more critically. And perhaps they will induce the academic geologists to start thinking.” ‘Critically’ means numbers and evidence, at least in my book. So let me inquire into that without complaint. If I am not up to it, or if I find out it was impossible at the mantle-aesthenosphere interface, then I can look and see if the numbers are better farther down below. Temperature-pressure-rheology-viscosity.

    …I totally agree that if the slippage happened, the oceans slosh. I have a lot of evidence for that.

    …Steens Mountain. I found four full papers that discuss its paleomagnetic history. I will read them and see what is there. ON first look, the numbers from Steens Mountain suggest a 58° angular shift as experienced at the mountain. That is fairly close to what I am tentatively working with.

    …I wasn’t saying anything about Hapgood, except that HIS math guy screwed up. The idea of polar ice dragging the crust around is invalid. It was worth him looking at, though. I don’t see anything wrong with that. I see where Warlow went wrong, too. Neither error is a big deal. It is amazing how much stuff in science turns out to be erroneous, eventually. It’s not the numbers that are wrong (except Hapgood’s math guy); it’s how people read the numbers and assemble them into a gestalt.

  26. No numbers first of all, dammit! If you really thinks you’re a bloody rationalist, not a researcher. It’s the facts that count.

    “too much mass for an impactor to move” – and whoever said that you need an impactor? Steve, this is silly.

    Hapgood’s math? I care about it as little as I care about yours.
    His crime was misrepresenting the results of Ting Ying Ma, who understood that it only can be the underside of the mantle.

    PS. I’ll be away for a while, I have a conference with my Inuit adviser.

  27. Steve,

    The Younger Dryas Event had to been a result of multiple impacts spread over a period of several day, or even weeks. Consider the melted rock surfaces you found in California, and the cave evidence of survivors. It was a non-survivable event from the heat evidence, but there were survivors in the affected area.

    The non-survivable heat effects covered much to most of the planet yet there were enough human survivors to repopulate the planet reasonably fast. I.e., the planet wasn’t pasteurized as by the dinosaur killer. Ergo, there were multiple impacts for the heat effects to cover such a large area.

    Humans of the period had sufficient warning to take cover. That means multiple impacts over a period of time.

  28. Steve, Han, and Tusk readers generally, thank you for posting; I am an amateur in all these fields and welcome all ‘theories’ for consideration. I try to present the “enquiring mind” rather than the skeptic. This really is Detective work and pure science: We must work with limited evidence and tools which may be faulty. Nobody can know for certain at this point, and if we did, nothing could be done to change future events.
    “Pole shifts”: Paleo magnetics are our best evidence to date, and even suggest 180 degree reversals. I don’t know! However, the continuous migration of the Magnetic North Pole shows that we have a dynamic rather than static system. My gut suggests that Earth’s magnetic axis is trending towards equilibrium, unless there is an unrecognized external influence?
    That said, I live on a very dynamic bit of rock which supposedly has migrated from near the South Pole to it’s current location above 49 degrees N. Not much evidence of stability there. And thousand foot cliffs of jagged and apparently unglaciated strata hint at a very recent and “Catastrophist” origin.

  29. Hello Paul,
    For the so-called pole shifts read by all means Warlow and Flodmark.
    Palaeomagnetics is only my second-best evidence, the best I get is
    from the Corpus Mythologicum.
    When they talk about an overturning, that’s obvious nonsense.
    When they talk about a Global Flood, that’s obvious nonsense.
    When they talk about the 2 occurring together, and do so on all continents plus Oceania, the odds are that the present worldview is obvious nonsense.

  30. Han –

    “No numbers first of all, dammit! If you really thinks you’re a bloody rationalist, not a researcher. It’s the facts that count.”

    We both know that the orthodoxy is never gong to accept ancient accounts as “facts”. They think of them as fairy tales, and nothing will change that except quantifiable facts. In that kind of an atmosphere, something else has to lead. When verbal histories are not fact, what do you propose? They simply aren’t going to listen.

    If we look at it like a courtroom, which counts more Eyewitnesses? Or forensics? There is not a lot of difference between courtrooms and this. And THEN add in the passage of time which obscures the stories. And then filter the stories through archaeologists’ biases and assumptions and also mistranslations of words, phrases and entire documents.

    As much as well would LIKE the scientists to accept the ancient accounts (me included), that will never happen. Not as a first step. AFTER the quantifiable evidence proves it, THEN a new generation of people will step in and tell us how the accounts fit with the science.

  31. Tom –

    I agree with your logic about the multiples. Myself, I came to it by a process of elimination. However, besides the black mat we don’t have any evidence of multiples. I wasn’t sold on that until realizing last week that the black mat being so widespread could not have possibly been from a single impactor.

    And a process of elimination in the real world is not the same as when answering a problem on a written test. The real world has alternative answers that sometimes we don’t know about for a good long while. It’s not just a case of four contrived alternative answers and five check boxes. We collectively can’t arrive at the end answer until we have truly determined that each wrong answer is provably and quantifiably wrong – OR with some seriously strong logic. As to the YDB, the world has a LONG time to go before certain “answers” will be accepted as wrong.

    Hell, the world at large still doesn’t accept the YDIH itself, much less multiples.

    Add to that the fact that the orthodoxy only allows for two kinds of impacts at present (since 65Mya) – meteoric and air bursts. Any other kind of crater or impact site is simply not seen yet as impact. We’ve/they’ve only been accepting of cratering on Earth since the 1970s and Gene Shoemaker, really. And – even with the nearly uncountable craters on every other solid planet or moon in the solar system – they pretended that Earth was somehow immune. For FAR too long.

    It is, IMHO, a miracle that rocks falling from the sky sneaked in under the wire (~1810)and was accepted before Uniformitarianism (~1850) slammed the door shut to ANYTHING not gradualistic. It just barely made it in, in time, or they would probably STILL be insisting that rocks don’t fall from the sky.

  32. Tom –

    “Humans of the period had sufficient warning to take cover. That means multiple impacts over a period of time.”

    We can BELIEVE that first part, but we can’t yet know it as fact. I think so. And I think the ones who saw it coming were far more developed in their science and tech than is currently even imagined, except in alternative research corners.

    As to the second, I am thinking that stone circles were their after-the-fact and quickly erected Early Warning Devices. The present ida of stone circles as “astronomical observatories” is well and good, but it only explains one aspect of the stone placements. That only explains sunrises or sunsets. But what about all the OTHER scores of rocks at each site? WHY would they go to the trouble of having all the REST of those stones erected? And, it WAS a lot of trouble.

    In this regard the shortsightedness of researchers – orthodox AND alternative! – boggles the mind. Everyone STOPS investigating after sunrises are determined by modern researchers. Huh???!!! WHAT ABOUT THE OTHER STONES, PEOPLE?

    The stone circles can’t be seen without looking at the gestalt of each.

    IMHO, the solstice alignments were important because soltices can be easily and accurately determined. Each is a MAXIMUM position of the sun on the horizon. Equinoxes are not so clear at ALL. For one thing, at the equinox the movement of the sunrise along the eastern horizon is quite rapid. Add in the fact that the year is 365.2422 days long – 365-1/4, if you want. That means that the sun’s movement is a ~4-year cycle as viewed from Earth. That means that NEXT year the sun rises in a different place on the soltice AND the equinox.

    However, because of the circularity of it all, the RELATIVE motion of the Sun at the solstice is very slight – opposite of what happens at the equinox, when the days are rapidly getting longer or shorter, and daily changes are large. Instead, at the soltice the length of days changes very little and so does the rising point on the horizon.

    Ergo, the sunrise position on Dec 21st or June 21st is barely different from the day before or the day after. Thus, I argue THAT position was the anchor of the designs of the many aligned stone circles. Practicality decided it.

    NOW, after them determining their main axis for their designs – which IS certainly apparent in the stone circles – WHY do the rest of the circles? THEY knew why, even if we don’t see it easily. The next stone on the left and the right – what was THAT one for? And the next ones to each side? And the NEXT ones? Those all took just about as much trouble to find, move, and erect as the main axis ones. And WHY put them where they put them? WHY the spacing? WHY the numbers of them that they erected? With so little tools and such heavy rocks, WHY not just stop at the solstice sunrise rocks?

    As long as arkies insist on putting them in their wrong places in history, no one among them can possibly understand what they were all for. And as long as the public takes arkies as their experts on it all, the public will also be ignorant.

    But if we put the stone circles in their right time context, their purpose becomes pretty obvious. They are observatories designed NOT to tell people when to plant and when to harvest. People can LOOK at the f-ing plants and SEE that it is time to harvest, after all. Planting time? Their non-astronomical knowledge would easily have sufficient. And if it needed to be X number of days after the solstice, why a simple pair of sticks in the ground would have sufficed. The arkies take us all for idiots, in telling us that such large stones were necessary for knowing when to plant.

    So, that is what the stone circles are NOT. What does the TIMING of their erecting tell us about what they were for? Well, farming came about – supposedly – at ~10,000 BCE. IF SO, THEN WHY did the people not build them until 4,700 years ago? Did it take them 5,000 years to figure out where the Sun came up? 2.5 TIMES the years since Julius Caesar?

    As I said, by putting them in the wrong time context no possible right answer is possible.

    And what might the right answer be?

    As it is told in the book “Uriel’s Machine”, in the Book of Enoch, Enoch is invited to “the utter North” by some seriously wise adepts of some sort, apparently solely for the purpose of showing him some sort of stone circle. They explained to him how this certain set of stone emplacements allows them to tell the time, in terms of months and seasons, based on the rising positions of the sunrises.

    For the present, I am going with Knight and Lomas’ idea that that stone circle was for observing meteors and comets that were near the ecliptic, and that they could tell which ones were dangerous for Earth and which ones weren’t. If so, that implies a science very far beyond what the orthodoxy says anyone had back then. And it ties much together.

    I don’t agree with Lomas and Knight’s dates, but much of the rest is pretty good stuff.

  33. Paul –

    Some feedback…

    “This really is Detective work and pure science: We must work with limited evidence and tools which may be faulty.”

    We can only start from where we are. Unfortunately, it seems likely that the orthodoxy has taken us down some dad ends, so we kind of half to go some ways just to get back up to a good starting point. We need to ask good questions, assimilate as best we can, and then ask new questions. As the Sci-Fi writer Theodore Sturgeon used to say, “Next Question?” There is always a next question. We are only at a point early in he continuum that extends from knowing nothing to knowing everything. And not far along, at that.

    “Nobody can know for certain at this point, and if we did, nothing could be done to change future events.”

    Myself, I think we can do a LOT. We know that a Tunguska and a Chelyabinsk are relatively harmless, in terms of extinction. I think blowing an incoming thing to smithereens is absolutely the way to go. If we end up with a bunch of Tunguskas out of a 1-km object, along with a lot of stuff that just lights up the sky, we will survive swimmingly. If we got 100 Tunguskas 70% or so would hit the oceans – with 90% of their mass lost in the atmosphere and chunks about 5 meters across hitting. 30 Tunguskas over land? Damage? Sure. Extinction? No. And if we have time to develop our methods, we might find ways to make 100 Tunguskas into 500 Chelyabinsks. Even better. They disintegrate even HIGHER in the atmosphere.

    “Pole shifts”: Paleo magnetics are our best evidence to date, and even suggest 180 degree reversals. I don’t know!”

    Paul, there is a LOT of uncertainty in paleomagnetics. Dates, directions, inclinations – they are all interpolated and interpreted and a LOT of assumptions are in there, untested mostly. If there is one science I’d say is still in its infancy that’s the one. I am not denigrating it, but it has serious limitations.

    “However, the continuous migration of the Magnetic North Pole shows that we have a dynamic rather than static system. My gut suggests that Earth’s magnetic axis is trending towards equilibrium, unless there is an unrecognized external influence?”

    That is my take on it, too. I see the MP wandering as internal stresses that have not come to equilibrium yet. I see that also as an indication of a recent destabilization, because the wandering in recent centuries and decades is pretty freaking BIG. While the orthodoxy puts the cause as something internal (all kinds of hypotheses about that), to me an past external “influence” seems a much simpler explanation and – if ever pursued – will, I think, give better and more useful answers.

  34. Steve; Happy holidaze to you and everyone here at the Tusk! In reference to the continental fires, Your impactor come in at superheated temps and explodes either as an airburst or direct hit. The blast wave is also superheated air. I’m sure it goes as such for a couple of hundred miles in all directions incinerating everything in it’s path. Those fires a now driven by high thermally induced winds which fan them across the landscape until there is nothing left to consume. As to other fires on other continents I’m sure the same scenario applies meaning multiple hits globally. A hit on Europe could easily ignite fires in England and the other British Isles. With the sea levels being lower much more landmass is exposed for the burning and ease of spreading.

  35. Jim; Happy holiday to you also.
    While I agree with the ‘Late Glacial Period’ time line discussed on this forum, that is not yet established fact. Also, the “lower sea levels” would not have increased the “exposed land” by more than 1-2%…
    The existence of the “Black mat” may also be explained by an oxygen poor environment, though that should be the cause of mass extinction??

  36. An acquaintance of mine, whom was a Ph.D. Mechanical Engineer. in the navy, was privy classified studies pertaining to nuclear weapons usage, told me that a 20Mton device detonated a certain altitude would start fires on the ground for a 200?mile radius and would knock down stick lumber buildings for a four hundred mile radius.

    That type of event in very dry lands south of the ice sheets, most of the water is locked up in ice, would set off a chain reaction of fires, that could conceivably burn for years, or until the great deluge put them out. Which is exactly the how it is described by the native Californian tales tell the story.
    Paul, the main problem with “The existence of the “Black mat” may also be explained by an oxygen poor environment, though that should be the cause of mass extinction?? “, is that this carbon rich layer is found on top of in situ cultural artifacts at Topper, it fills in mammoth foot prints and covers cultural artifacts at the Blackwater draw kill site. It also contains hi temp refractory products at channel island sites 60 miles out to sea and up wind from the mainland.
    I believe that the black mats are actually 2 different unrelated phenomenon but linked in causation.
    First you have the deposition of this amorphorous carbon, from the fires and or from the object itself, then on top of that you have the microbial mats from the decay of organic matter in the dark times that followed the events.

  37. George: Would it be possible to change the structure of “Tusk comments” so tht we could link each post in a chain, rather than reference post made by other people long after the original comment was made…Not to complain,,,but Tusk seems to be getting “Long in the tooth”…:)

  38. Tom,
    Entitled to your opinion, and I am more than aware of the impact calculator. In this discussion, the impact calculator is not a valid model. Their model involves a continental impact,where most of the energy is reflected back into space, in the form of the ejecta plume.
    In an airburst, the atmosphere absorbs nearly all of the energy, and slowly radiates it back into space.
    The other end of the spectrum is a strike into oceanic crust, where nearly all of the energy is absorbed by the earth itself, oceanic impacts are actually worse for the biosphere than either of the other scenarios, as the vaporized water holds the thermal energy far longer.
    With regards to my previous comment, I wish my friend was still alive so I could nail down the pertinents. It was a casual conversation I had nearly 10 years ago, so don’t rely on the details, but I do know he referenced a yield of 20Mt or more, and that a detonation at a certain altitude over the LA basin would cause a 12-14 psi over pressure as far away as pheonix.

  39. Tom –

    That Purdue Impact Calculator gave some silly results. A Dense rock meteor 2 km across coming in at 20°, like Chelyabinsk, and at 30 km/sec had absolutely no effects, and did not make it to the ground.


  40. Steve, using your quoted parameters in the calculator gave me a 27 km crater in sedimentary rock. You may want to check your input parameters for typo. I suspect that you may have not changed the size from metres to kilometers, hence you only had a 2 metre rock, not a 2km rock.

  41. Kevin, I am familiar with nuclear weapons effects. I was one of two people, the other being S. Fred Singer, who destroyed Carl Sagan’s scientific career in 1984 over his nuclear winter hoax. He misrepresented, in print, the opinions of his colleagues and they called him on it in a footnote to their December 1983 article in _Science_. That was career suicide.

    I spotted the whopper in Sagan’s October 1983 nuclear winter article in the _Parade_ Sunday newspaper supplement magazine the instant I laid eyes on it. There was a mammoth energy budget issue. Turco, Toon, Anderson and Pollack refused to go along with Sagan’s Piltdown Man fake there, but Sagan said they agreed with him. They expressed their disagreement with an obscure footnote in the December 1983 _Science_ article but I was ready for it, realized the implications immediately, ran down the reference to a Joe Knox study at LRL, and sent my findings to Fred Singer in March 1984.

    Singer did the rest and Sagan never figured out what had happened or who did it. No one would work with him, his grant applications were refused, etc., and he ended up writing science-fiction, at which he was suprisingly good.

    The nuclear winter hoax primed me for the current global warming hoax. The same people who promoted the nuclear winter hoax were very eager to promote the earliest versions of the global warming claims, and used the same tactics that Sagan did.

  42. Whoa friends!
    Tusk is an “unmoderated” and hopefully civil forum. Be carefull that spirited dispute does not degenerate into a brawl..

    If we can all agree that there have been impacts and that these impacts have had material impacts on the environment and on humans; then we can start discussing the magnitude and the characteristics of these events.

    It would be very impossible to construct physical models to test our theories, so we do have to try with mathematics. However,I have one thought of a “Real World” approximation. eg: A projectile striking a suspended watermelon. That model is far from perfect, but it may lead to some interesting paths.
    Happy New Year all.

  43. Cevin, I’ll dig up my 7th edition of _Effects of Nuclear Weapons_ by Glasstone and Dolan this weekend. It has a nifty circular slide rule in a back pocket for figuring blast and thermal pulse effects for a given yield and distance from ground zero, based on either “groundburst” or “optimal airburst blast effects”.

    A groundburst nuclear weapon is defined as one in which the fireball touches the ground. “Optimal height airburst” is, for American nuclear attack planners, one which maximizes the radius of “five pounds per square inch” overpressure, which I vaguely recall means maximum _dynamic_ overpressure.

    I’ll look up a 20-megaton yield detonation airburst on the calculator and post what overpressure and thermal effects it says will be felt at 20 miles from ground zero.

  44. Tom,

    The USAF and the Forest Service did some damage assessment studies in the 1970’s on the effects of high yield (multi-megaton) nukes American forests.

    The assessment was that yes you could start large fires, especially in dry seasons, but it was not worth the effort compared to the fires from striking cities.

    I posted some excerpts on one of the YDB threads here, but I can’t find them.

  45. Cevin, a 20 megaton airburst at the optimum height to maximize the 5 psi overpressure area will produce a 2.35 psi overpressure at 20 miles, with a wind speed of about 75 miles an hour. This will blow in almost all windows and do sufficient damage to woodframe single story buildings to make them technically uninhabitable – the roofs will leak, etc. Additionally the thermal pulse can create fires in some flammable surfaces.

    The 5psi zone is generally considered the zone of “total destruction” from fire and blast. Soviet planners said it was the 7psi zone. The 2 psi zone was considered by many, including me, as the limit of a eventual burn-out zone. Basically everything in the 5psi zone would be definitely burnt out, and this burned out area, depending on fuel load, would gradually reduce to nothing by the 2 psi zone. This assumes detonation over an American metropolitan area with extensive suburbs.

    The 5 psi zone for a 20 megaton airburst is the area within 12 miles of ground zero.

  46. George – It wasn’t me who asked for the change in thread presentation. It was Paul.

    The thing I would like it search within comments. But I found out that WP doesn’t offer that, and the one App I found for it didn’t work at all.

  47. George – Perhaps I myself misunderstood. I didn’t finish reading your comment. Paul had just asked for a different way of threading comments – I THINK with replies to comments indented and immediately below the referenced previous comment.

    But in reading your comment, I realized I may have long ago asked for some way to post general comments and ones that are off-topic to any of the recent posts. I’d forgotten all about asking for that, and am not really clear that I had.

    BUT, all that aside, yes, an Open Thread would be nice – especially if it is readily available all the time. I think people would go to the Open Thread a LOT.

  48. Tom –

    A very interesting comment, about you and Singer and Sagan.

    Singer was one of the early and foremost skeptics of global warming, from what I know. I am one, too, though not THAT early nor certainly not foremost. But staunch, yes. I had no bone to pick with anyone, when out of curiosity about 15 years ago I thought I’d go looking at the science. I thought it was time I did. HOLY CRAP! I still haven’t found the science. It is all people with confirmation bias, reading things into the evidence that isn’t there or they completely ignore counter evidence. And they never used the process of elimination to rule out ANY of the possible natural causes. The conclusion was jumped to and everything after that was read as positive confirmation. NO. IT WASN’T.

    Terrible, terrible science. And once the governmental money started rolling in, the backwater of science that climatology used to be was a money tree.

    I hope and pray that impact science never goes in that direction. Given the topic, it would be very easy for us all to run around screaming about the End of the World being upon us any moment now.

    Alarmism isn’t science.

  49. Paul: “If we can all agree that there have been impacts and that these impacts have had material impacts on the environment and on humans; then we can start discussing the magnitude and the characteristics of these events.”

    Paul, you may be surprised, but I don’t agree that there have been impacts as you say, that has affected human history. I think there is SOME evidence of them, but we are very far from turning SOME evidence into a solid conclusion. I think it is a completely open question. It is a conclusion I FAVOR, but if there isn’t enough to convince someone who is new to this or – especially – who is somewhat skeptical, then we don’t have enough, and if we don’t have enough, to me that leaves it an open question.

    Whatever happened to neutrality in scientific inquiry?

    Paul: “It would be very impossible to construct physical models to test our theories, so we do have to try with mathematics.”

    I don’t quite agree with this, either. If we go off in that direction, then we go the way of Boslough, with his cutesy cartoons that may OR MAY NOT represent reality. The global warming people have run off into La-La Land with their models that are proving to be non-correlated with the recent reality/history. I hope that impact science never does that.

    All of this (and global warming) are far too early to jump to conclusions. It is my thinking that 95% of what we and the orthodoxy now think is real will be shown in the future to be wrong. So all we can do is pick out the best directions we can find and try to glean what we can from it all. Recognizing the 5% that isn’t a false lead is a tricky thing. Everyone is weighting the various pieces of evidence differently and coming up with multiplicities of hypotheses, in many different directions. It is a good bit like the early days of electricity, when every inquirer had a different take on everything. That took quite a few decades to sort out, even with everyone very open-minded.

    Today we are hampered by an orthodoxy every bit as lame as pre-Galileo and pre-Copernicus, and pre-Bretz and pre-Wegener. The orthodoxy is not run by the Catholic Church, but it is every bit as big of an obstacle to any open, objective inquiry. Many directions are anathema to them, and every one of those barricades is a hindrance to finding the truth of the matter. Peer review, while it SOUNDS like a good idea and often is, has also stood in the way from time to time. Those who “stand in the way of scientific progress” do it for very good and solid reasons (sometimes), but they over do it.

    So, I don’t agree with the orthodoxy, because they say just about everything we are thinking is impossible. And I don’t agree that what we have is a done deal, either, that every idea we have is possible. Reality doesn’t work either way. It takes hard work and luck and insight and TIME – as well as efforts on a broad swath by lots of people. SOME of that will be math/quantitative (which Han is arguing against, it seems), and some of it will be insight and qualitative. But it is not going to be resolved in a weekend or a decade.

    Though my own leanings are strongly in agreement with what people write here, I know that taking sides doesn’t make something true.

  50. Jonny –

    Nope. I entered before as 2,000 meter, not 2 meters, I re-did it and came up with the same zero effects.

    Every box on the page shows no effects. No radiation, no crater, no nada.

    My inputs, as reiterated on the output page:

    Diameter: 2000 meters
    Density: 3000 kg/m^3
    Angle: 20 degrees
    Velocity: 30 km/sec
    Target: Sedimentary rock
    Your distance: 100 km

  51. Steve, “not resolved in a weekend or decade”.
    It’s easy to make mistakes with such estimates.
    Remember the futurologists?
    In 1987 I wrote an article “Waarom ging het Mesmerisme ondergronds? (Why Mesmerism went underground?) and I was thinking about a comeback, perhaps 2050, perhaps 2100?
    But it is back right now, this decade. And worldwide.
    The Enlightenment ended in 1784 sharp, with De Puysegur, And Romanticism ended in 1860.

    In this comments column I criticized sharply the Northamerican researchers, on the stratigraphical position of the Usselo/Clovis Layer, and on the lack of mineralogical data on the Carolina Bay sands.
    Nobody reacts, as if what I write is of no importance.

    PS. It IS of importance.

  52. Han; You may be tripping over your ego.
    There may be many reasons for people to not comment on what you print. Often politeness leads to silence if people have nothing to say, or if they dissagree violently and don’t wish to offend.
    Or perhaps they just have busy lives, outside of paleo-archyology??
    If I were a polite person, I would probably ‘keep my keyboard closed’ rather than post my amatuer musings on a specialist forum like “Cosmic Tusk”. But, sofar nobody has suggested that I do so.

  53. Han: Please excuse me. What I meant to say was that I’ve not commented because I don’t know anything! Perhaps George can remove my post.

  54. Tom,
    I’ll defer to your knowledge, I really wish my friend was still alive so he could clarify what we had talked about. I do know he would not have been ” yanking my chain”.

    I know that here in California, the YDB layer is found at several well documented archeological sites. It also serves a good bench mark in the stratrigraphy of those sites. At all known sites there is a hiatus of occupation immediately following the deposition of this layer.
    The most fascinating thing is that Clovis shows up in central California after this hiatus, approx. 12kya at Witt and 11kya? at farpoint, in Malibu.
    This influx of new people shows up in the history of the Diegueno culture of southern cal. Carter showed that these pebble tool using people changed to blade type tools, for a short period before reverting back to the old ways.
    I find it almost funny when people say that Clovis disappeared, when it’s clear that they moved away from their ancestral homelands.
    It’s also likely that this upset in the climate caused people from South America to migrate into north America, founding the Mesa, Sluiceway and Haskett tool complexes.

  55. Paul,
    Yes I agree, I’ve somewhat of an ego -but only after I became a catastrophist years BEFORE 1980; and I also accused, in 1987, western Academia of obfuscating, post-Romanticism, the psychological data that came to light during the somnambulic trance.
    And Mesmerism is back, this decade of 2010!

    And now my ego imagines that my opinion has some worth.
    But opinions have no worth, it’s facts that count.

  56. >”these pebble tool using people changed to blade type tools, for a short period before reverting back to the old ways.”<
    That is very interesting 7.
    Could those "changes" have been the result of knowlegable runaways, rather than "migrations"? That could explain the temporary nature. Once those people died or moved on, the technology could have been lost??
    My part of the World has been too geographically active to retain any fragile records, for even that short period.
    Han; My email is [email protected]

  57. Han: “Remember the futurologists?”

    Oh, yes, Otto Hahn and such. A super-genius brother of an old flame got hired by Otto Hahn, back in the ’60s and he was sequestered away for decades.

    “The Enlightenment ended in 1784 sharp, with De Puysegur” – care to elucidate?

    “…And Romanticism ended in 1860.” – again, care to elucidate?

    “In this comments column I criticized sharply the Northamerican researchers, on the stratigraphical position of the Usselo/Clovis Layer” – I remember you bringing it up, and I’ve gone and looked quite a bit at the Usselo layer and the N European Sand Belt, and DID comment. I have MUCH to learn on those – probably more later, but not at this moment. I haven’t gleaned enough yet.

    “…and on the lack of mineralogical data on the Carolina Bay sands.”

    Han, I never saw any comments by you on THIS. Had I seen it, I assure you that I’d have commented. I have found almost zero information on the mineralogy of the CBs. Carbon dating is so problematic as to be utterly useless. And then Michael Davias and Tim Harris came along with their 780,000 ya date, which is far out of any C14 dating. The C14 dating is really dependent on where they take samples and if there was overturning or not. OSL seems to also give radically variant dates.

    “Nobody reacts, as if what I write is of no importance. PS. It IS of importance.”


  58. Paul: “If I were a polite person, I would probably ‘keep my keyboard closed’ rather than post my amatuer musings on a specialist forum like “Cosmic Tusk”. But, so far nobody has suggested that I do so.”

    Don’t be polite. Jump in with all four feet and kick and scream.

    Almost all of us here are non-professional scientists. But there are some damned good minds here.

    Put your thoughts and reactions into the fray. THAT IS WHAT BLOGS ARE FOR.

  59. Paul; One more hand on deck is always a good thing. If we don’t agree with you we’ll tell you. And if you don’t agree with us tell us. We’ll get over it. As long as nothing is stupid or mean spirited we’re open to it. Dig in! It will free your mind>

  60. Cevin Q, here exists a similar phenomenon, in Germany near the Rhine valley, downstream of the Laacher See volcano. After the explosion, the Federmesser stone culture was back there for a while.
    At all other sites the Federmesser assemblage is on the surface covered by the Usselo Layer – and/or the volcanic tuff.

    Steve, the Marquis de Puysegur was, in Paris, a pupil of Mesmer.
    Back at his castle in northern France, he treated a young gardener who spoke French poorly, with a regional accent. But in trance he started to speak educated French, with a Parisian accent. and a rich vocabulary. No logic, the Enlightenment was finished. The other personality, the Daimoon of Socratic memory,
    was back, in philosophy (Schelling, Fichte, Maine de Biran, Schopenhauer) and in literature, from Edgar Allan Poe to
    Dostoievski. The Double or Doppelganger.
    See also the essay by Apuleius (known from his novel The Golden Ass), De Deo Socratis.
    The end of Romanticism, in Academia, came in 1859 or ’60, the materialist coup d’etat.
    Perhaps between Fechner and Wundt.
    In psychology (I think) between Fechner and Wundt.

  61. >”If we don’t agree with you we’ll tell you. And if you don’t agree with us tell us”<
    That is a very gracious spirit, you all exhibit. Be warned that, though lacking in credentials, I transport an ego as large as Han's…:D

    Han: I'm not sure how these references to Mysticism crept into this conversation. Perhaps there are nuances in the thread I have not caught??
    However, there is probably a relevance to almost any field which we don't fully understand. That may to some extent explain my contributions to this forum and others. I sometimes seem to 'Harvest ideas from the aether' about subjects in which I have no training???? Perhaps I'm just very odd!

  62. Paul, nobody has credentials. Given by whom?? By some sleepy academics?

    Mesmerism is EMPIRICAL, whereas positivism-materialism is a hollow dogma, mid-Victorian. And it happened at the same time, 1860 about, the attack against Romantic empiricism in psychology, and against catastrophism in geology, archaeology, history etc.
    Nothing of an enigmatic coincidence there.
    I just read (in Graham Hough, on Yeats): It is not demanded of followers of the occult tradition that they become like little
    children. That injunction (gospel of John) I got to know in the 1940’s in German-occupied Holland, under a different name – das Fuehrer-Prinzip. Kadaverdisziplin.

  63. Han –

    Thanks for all the info and leads for both Paul and myself, if I may speak for him.

    The Kadaverdisziplin – the Discipline of the Corpse, I take it. Yes. And the Fürher-Princip, I know about and agree with you. One English term for them both is Authoritarianism. I have learned about that one from a slightly different angle – that it is the believers in authority who are its energy source. There are always those who would be little emperors, if only they had gullible “little children” or sheep who would adore them and follow.

    I began as much in the occult as in anything, but with a non-follower mentality. 40 years of engineering later (including 7-8 years in R&D), I have a foot in both camps, but mostly in empiricism. There are many little children in the occult. They seek some principle to be led by, too.

    Yes, from what little I know, Mesmerism is empirical. Mesmer and others weren’t imagining anything, and it took courage and certainty to come out against the grain. The Jansenites in France a good bit earlier showed that there is more under heavens than our philosophies will allow for.

    Positivism (by one definition): “…a philosophical system that holds that every rationally justifiable assertion can be scientifically verified or is capable of logical or mathematical proof, and that therefore rejects metaphysics and theism.”

    “…can be scientifically verified…” – Obviously this is in error, because it assumes that all of what will EVER be science is already known. I know of several topics that will be science some day but are taboo today.

    “…is capable of logical or mathematical proof” – I have bemoaned the sad and weak state of mathematics (much less logic) when they make computer models of systems and have to simplify the model inputs with assumptions and estimates because (in their owns terms), “It is too complicated”. The real mathematicians are yet to be born, IMHO.

    As to logical proofs? Show me a proof that isn’t rife with assumptions and I will show you a comet from the Oort cloud that is in my back pocket.

    Empiricism? There is no science but empiricism. Robert Hooke railed about that in the Royal Society 350 years ago, and we STILL don’t have it the way he wanted it. Newton won out and we now have our many scientific journals pumping out a high percentage of scientific inquiry reports/papers that are little more than assumptions and blather and sucking up – abetted by an ending appeal for funding with the term “climate change” or some such.

    (Appeals to reason are not science, but a sophomoric debate club… Only empiricism is science. Skeptical empiricism.)

    Hahaha – I have several science books on pdf from the late 1800s – the early years of the “victory” of uniformitarianism, and it is a joke to look at the logic and reason that was based on uniformitarianism and that is so clearly wrong, from today’s perspective. It all made for a nice fairy tale, with Goldilocks this and Goldilocks that.

    The Goldilocks crowbar of uniformitarianism. Assumption piled on guess, magnified by careerism and cronyism – the house of cards that usurped science.

  64. “The Kadaverdisziplin – the Discipline of the Corpse” – the discipline of the abdicated. Those who choose to not be responsible for themselves and their actions. “But, but, but. . . I was only following orders!” Those who don’t think for themselves are already dead.

    Hahaha – After writing that, I decided to see what was out there about this…

    “Certainly, the German was disciplined and obedient, criminally so: Kadaverdisziplin. That came out at the Nuremburg trials. Anyone who received an order, whatever it might be, executed it. The idea of not executing it never occurred to them.” – pg 205 “Nach und Nebel” by Floris Bakels and Herman Friedhoff

    I still have a book project going (barely so at this time) about three powerful Germans in the Nazi era who worked with Hitler and then didn’t – and who all ended up in concentration camps and only by luck did not end up as real cadavers. To think was to risk. One of them – Chief of the General Staff Franz Halder – had to deal with and beat heads with Hitler every day during Operation Barbarossa. What a fun job THAT was, especially since Hitler didn’t respect generals one bit.

  65. The Germans of the 1938-44 era were a particularly bad example of an “Authoritarian society”. But, they were hardly unique: Most humans readily exchange the fear of uncertain liberty for the “security” of structure.
    Most don’t even question the basis of “Authority”:
    Here is a book on the subject which should be required reading in all schools:

  66. [Authoritarianism is off topic here, so I will try to not get this off on a tangent too far.]

    Yes, Paul, that Altemayer essay/book is a very good one and I agree that it should be required reading in schools. In fact, I had Altemeyer’s essay/book specifically in mind when I mentioned authoritarians. Nice to know you have read it, too!

    I found that a few years ago and was very impressed with it. He understands them quite well. And well he might. As he says in his acknowledgement,

    If it turns out you do not like this book, blame John Dean. You never would have heard of my research if he had not recently plowed through my studies, trying to understand, first, various people he knew in the Nixon White House, and then some leading figures of the Republican Party of 2004.

    John Dean was about as close as one can ever get to the center of the focus of authoritarian citizenry, having been Richard Nixon’s White House Counsel.

    Paul: “The Germans of the 1938-44 era were a particularly bad example of an “Authoritarian society”.” I’d question your choice of the word “bad” in this sentence, because I THINK you meant that the Germans were a good example of the horrors of authoritarionism. Correct me if I am wrong.

    Along with you, I highly recommend the Altemeyer piece. Thanks for the link!

  67. Han Kloosterman RIP
    Han Kloosterman died 14 nov. about 2AM. Age 85
    His daughter Rebecca was with him and held his hand.
    Cremation was 17 nov.
    Greetings to all of you

  68. My condolences to the family. I had the privilege of discussing meteoritic topics with him.

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