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NCGT Journal (September 2013)

12 October 2013

The September issue of NCGT Journal is now available to download and print out in pdf at www.ncgt.org/newsletter.php (or www.ncgt.org/nws/909848777ac2dc52479540e3efc31add.pdf) … William Thompson forwarded the link where there are some interesting letters as well as articles, with geophysics the main focus. Basically, it is a forum for those geologists and geophysicists who aren't in love with Plate Tectonics, the likes of David Pratt for example. He wrote an article that was published in March but Kursten Storetvedt published a counter view in June and now we have the Pratt response to that. Pratt's theory requires negligible polar wander whereas Storetvedt suggests there was a good deal of polar wander.

Thee is a fascinating letter on page 3 by Peter James (an Australian geologist) – the subject being Christmas time earthquakes – and the winter solstice. Christmas Day occurs 4 days after the winter solstice and the two celebrations are inter twined (but lost in history). Peter James is in fact critical of the association, made by Valentino Staser, concerning earthquakes in the NW Appennines of Italy. However, we may note that megalithic alignments to the moon's extremes of orbit also invariably involve an alignment to the winter solstice (Stonehenge is an example). James appears to be referring to an article in the June issue which I will look at later.

Another letter in NCGT Journal, page 4, 5 and 6 describes how scientists deal with science – and it is worth reading. He says, 'scientists never test their basic intellectual models – they only use such theories, following rather slavishly the paradigmatic worldviews associated with them. Researchers, he says, are fans of mock up modifications of their cherished theoretical models – trying hard to make unexpected observations to look like expected ones' – which is why it is so easy to be sceptical, I suppose. He adds, 'the invention of ground breaking ideas in science has always been the prerogative of a few independent thinkers in each field and the real discussion has been led by a few individuals. The reason is that the mass of scientists devote their research efforts fo specific, technical and observational matters, presenting their science within the topical world view …' etc. Whereas he is applying this to geologists, and the sudden adoption of Plate Tectonics for no good reason, only that it was what everyone else appeared to be doing, can be compared to climate science, and the blind faith in the ability of co2 to have a major effect on climate – which is actually not happening in the real world. As such, what chance is there that geologists will ever opt to embrace catastrophism? None whatsoever. Individual geologists can make a good living by kowtowing to the consensus, even to the extent of reproducing the mainstream view and teaching a new generation of students – without once mentioning the uncertainties within Plate Tectonics or any other geological paradigm. Mavericks must feel like they are banging their heads against a wall – and this appears to be why so much new science kicks in after the progenitor of the new theory has gone to the grave. They clearly get a headache.

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