Lead uranium dating
This is the first of two postings generated by the debate.
It contains Bob Bales's opening statement, Chris Stassen's rebuttal, and Bob Bales's closing remarks.
Radioactive atoms “decay” until the number of protons and neutrons are in balance (not equal, just balanced in a particular way), and for heavy elements that balance is almost always reached with lead or thallium.
The last way to change one isotope to another, and the only technique we can really use and control, is “neutron bombardment“.
Alchemists back in the day, being unaware of these sorts of things, got very excited about lead-to-gold stuff, philosopher’s stones, and life from nothing.
Many of them were legit scientists of the day, so we legit scientists of today have inherited a lot of their symbols and short-hand (though not their methods, by and large).
I've discussed some of this in the newsgroup, but here I'll leave it for the rebuttal phase of the debate.
The arguments I use are of the same basic type as those of the old-earth proponents: extrapolation of present-day trends into the past to determine how long something could have been going on.
Bombarding a sample with neutrons sometimes makes the atoms in question decay into higher elements, and almost always makes them more radioactive (so this is a “bombard then wait” sort of thing).Also, the arguments I use here deal with the solar system, the earth, and man.They do not deal with the age of the universe as a whole.By looking at the chart you can figure out what elements can reasonably be made from others using neutron bombardment.