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Muck and Hancock

13 June 2019

At https://grahamhancock.com/hancockg18/ … Muck, Mammoths and Extinctions. Was Alaska the scene of a great cataclysm at the end of the Ice Age. This comes from Graham Hancock's web site. He says the evidence of a cataclysm first began to take shape in the 1930s and 1940s and derives primarily from the work of Frank Hibben and Froelich Rainey (both cited extensively by Velikvosky in Earth in Upheaval). In the April 1940 issue of American Antiquity Rainey, a professor of anthropology at the University of Alaska in Fairbanks, described wide cuts, miles long and up to 140 feet deep, that had been slouced out of the muck by the gold mining industry along river and stream valleys tributary to the Tanana river in and around Fairbanks. He lived and worked in Fairbanks and was able to witness what he was saying with his eyeballs. This is not the case with many of his critics who lived far away. He described the Muck as containing enormous numbers of frozen bones of extinct animals as well as brush, stumps, moss and fresh water molluscs. Rainey also reported on the discovery of stone tools in the muck – nineteen of them (in association with Pleistocene fossils). These appear to have got lost in the system but until recently Clovis First ruled and the idea humans might have been living in Alaska in the Ice Age was strongly resisted by archaeologists and mainstream in general. Velikovsky also mentions this – which he sourced from Rainey.

Rainey was followed by Hibben, an archaeologist from the University of New Mexico. He was also used extensively by Velikovsky (and others). Hibben is the one that has been most criticised by mainstream not just because he breached the Clovis First paradigm (an unwelcome look at reality) but also because he emphasized the catastrophic demise of animals, trees and plants – which was anathema to uniformitarians. Gradualism ruled the roost for most of the 20th century so he was clearly a heretic and a loose cannon (for showing the paradigm up as an empty vessel full of puff and wind). His critics focussed on the Hibben assumption that all the destruction and bones belonged to a single event which according to Hancock was guesswork. The point is the muck has never been subject to a proper excavation – in an archaeological manner. It has been investigated by geologists who delineated a difference between the laying down of silt (loess) that occurred on more than one occasion prior to the muck (and the muck itself has silt/ loess in it suggesting it disturbed earlier levels and generally mixed it all up). Presently you will find lots of blog pieces and articles on the Net criticising Hibben – much as they do Velikovsky. One reason is that Creationist web sites regularly quote Hibben to justify the catastrophic nature of the muck in order to associate it with the Flood of Noah etc. Mainstream has an obsession with coming out in opposition to Creationism. In reality it does not affect them in the slightest as they are not religious and attend schools that teach the uniformitarian model. It is a case of talking down dissent from their point of view. Dictorial you could say – a bit like climate scientists spending an inordinate amount of time criticising sceptics when all they really have to do is come up with some solid evidence which never materialises. Uniformitarianism is a belief system. You are indoctrinated into it at school, university, in books and in the media, much akin to climate science. If their beliefs were so robust why do they have to become hysterical when someone disagrees. That is not to say I am supporting Creationism but only that catastrophism should not be excluded from research- and currently it is excluded. Catastrophism is quite different from Creationism as the latter is founded on the strange idea that symbolical Biblical numbers are a true reflection of the passage of time.

Hancock leaves open the question of whether or not the muck represents more than one catastrophic pulse of water up the Tanana river valley and its tributaries and that is how it should be until the muck is subject to a pretty substantial amount of research as far as layering is concerned. There is no reason why several events are not involved as we have a Younger, Older and Oldest Dryas event and it is even possible that the event at 8200 years ago also left the mark of a tsunami wave (and therefore the human artifacts may not be from the Ice Age). Hancock says that some of the muck may even date back as far as the last interglacial, 125,000 years ago. However, what Hibben wrote about the catastrophic nature of the muck still holds traction. What we don't know is how to divide it into layers – if indeed it requires layering. This appears to be a mainstream technique as they managed to reduce the catastrophic nature of the scablands by dividing the Harlen Bretz catastrophic release of water at the end of the Ice Age into a series of lesser scale floods – and they made it stick. Have they done the same with Hibben. However, you will notice if you read the critiques they mostly focus on the loess and silt layers rather than the muck itself and its contents.

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