George Howard’s web site http://cosmictusk.com/deep-time-impact-induced-volcanism-a-collaquy/ is basically a discussion between Hermann Burchard and Han Kloosterman on catastrophism – or that is how it begins. Once again Velikovsky crops up – and our Peter Warlow. Kloosterman syas Velikovsky was more of a scholar than a scientist and he collected some 25 earth reversal myths (1950) and speculated on the earth decelerating and then accelerating in the opposite direction, ignoring the energy problem. Peter Warlow, however, was bothered by the energy problem and came up with the tippe top model (1980). Slabinski’s debunking of Warlow was overrated – and uncritically accepted. Warlow thought a reversal could be achieved by the fly-by of a planet sized body but physicist Stig Flodmark of the University of Stockhold calculated internal energy might be sufficient – thus doing away with the large cosmic body. Kloosterman then says he has continued where Velikovsky left off and has found a further 60 worldwide myths of reversal. It is the perfect mechanism to account for geomagnetic reversals, he suggests, the mantle turning over around the nucleus. Burchard replied negatively by saying he has a problem with the tippe top dynamics and thinks impacts were responsible for geomagnetic reversals.
Somewhat later, EP Grondine chipped in that Velikovsky’s bad physics set back impact studies – nice to blame somebody for the prevalence of uniformitarianism. He then said, I don’t think there is a body of sufficient mass which has passed close enough to set off earthquakes (yet alone an earth reversal). He continued by saying there are no crustal shifts associated with impacts in historical times, or craters of sufficient size. Burchard replied that plate tectonics answers the last point, and Rod Chilton added, earthquakes may be triggered by close passes of bolides and also by those that strike the planet. It therefore seems that even catastrophists come in a variety of shades – and levels of interest. What they have read and absorbed colours their views, and Grondine is influenced by the bad press accorded Velikovsky.