Some more SCIENCE stuff!

Last week’s posting brought a torrent of emails. Most of it was positive, but the usual few berated me because I failed to mention God’s role—although I thought that I covered that point in the very beginning of the piece.

But one, in particular, stood heads above all the others simply because of its monumental stupidity. I won’t post the email address he used because I don’t want too many 7-year-olds picking on him. But here’s a direct quote from him.

“Evulution (his spelling) does not apply to humans now. We survived the dinosaurs and because of our intelligence, we are still going strong. This is no accident.” He included a web site for verification. Click here.

The link takes you to the Creation Museum, where Ken Ham and his horde of followers do their best to convince people that, based on the extrapolation of all the begats in the Bible, planet Earth was CREATED around 7,000 years ago.

I’ve written about this crowd before; so I’m not going to rehash it here. Let’s suffice it to say that, for Ken Ham and his followers, humans and dinosaurs coexisted. And to them, the Flintstones, a TV program meant to tickle our funny bones, was not a cartoon at all, but rather an historical animated documentary.

People, as I always say, are free to believe anything they wish, no matter how cockamamie. Good luck Ken Ham!

FACT: dinosaurs arrived on the planet about 231-MILLION years ago, and they dominated the preponderance for about another 135-MILLION years, before going extinct around 66-MILLION years ago.

Humans, on the other hand, arrived in their earliest form about 2-MILLION years ago, and in their modern form they arrived only 200-THOUSAND years ago. But their intellectual capability to alter climate balances didn’t begin to show itself until about 3-HUNDRED years ago.

Now, for the record, the dinosaurs died off about 64-million years BEFORE the first humans even arrived in the house. And they survived 135-million years as compared to human survival (so far) of only 2-million years.

However, regarding climate change, it’s the last 300-years of human evolution that is critical to any discussion regarding human contributions TO climate change. Keep reading, if you’re still interested.

Anyway, Earth’s formation took place 4.56-BILLION (4,560,000,000) years ago. This is a LONG time ago, and everybody knows it. Humans arriving on board 2-MILLION (2,000,000) years ago is also a LONG time ago, and, as well, everybody knows it.

But this isn’t very helpful when the point is emphasizing just how “Johnny-come-lately” humans are relative to Earth’s evolutionary history. So let’s scale it down a bit by reducing Earth’s geologic age to 365-DAYS.

It’s easy to do as long as we remember that we have to scale other things as well.

For example, humans first arrived 2,000,000 years ago on an Earth that was 4,560,000,000-years old. If we divide 2-million by 4.56-billion we get a decimal fraction of 0.000438596, which tells us how long humans have been around as a fraction of Earth’s total existence.

So, if we’re scaling Earth’s existence to 365-days, we have to multiply 365-days by 0.000438596 to arrive at 0.16008754 days; then multiply this by 24-hours per day to arrive at 3.85 hours.

So, on a 365-day Earth-age scale, humans in their earliest form will have arrived on the scene about 3.85-HOURS ago. Do the same calculation for the arrival of humans in their modern form, some 200,000-years ago.

Divide 200,000 by 4,560,000,000; then multiply that result by 365-days. Further multiply that result by 24-hours per day; then multiply this result by 60-minutes per hour to arrive at 23.05-MINUTES.

Again, on a 365-day Earth-age scale, humans in their modern form will have arrived merely 23.05-MINUTES ago.

Now, regarding that last 300-years of human evolution, Earth’s worldwide industrial revolutions began taking place, and we began pumping scads of human-generated CO2 into the atmosphere.

Using our 365-day scale, divide 300-years by 4,560,000,000. Multiply that result by 365-days; then multiply that result by 24-hours per day; then multiply that result by 60-minutes per hour, and then multiply that result by 60-seconds per hour to arrive at 2.07-SECONDS.

And once again using our 365-day Earth-age scale, humans with the ability to alter climate balances will have arrived a mere 2.07 SECONDS ago.

Have humans contributed to climate change over the past 300-years? Here’s a graph; decide for yourselves. However, keep in mind that, as of now, we’d need less than five fingers to count the number of legitimate scientists who disagree.

But Tea Party pundits and their hoards of mindless drone followers still definitely disagree, but for them, they’re still pissed off at Al Gore, not to mention their strong dislike for Liberals.

Have a great week!

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