William Stiebing, 1984, Prometheus Books.

(Investigator 11, 1990 March)

An interesting argument against the occurrence of recent worldwide natural catastrophes is this:

Coral is a case in point. These small marine creatures build up reef structures (which are actually the accumulations of their skeletons) at a slow rate that can be measured. The growth rings of some species even reflect accurately the number of days per month and the number of days per year. But living coral polyps can survive only in water temperatures between 61o and 97oF. So all coral polyps would have been destroyed in a catastrophe that caused the seas to boil. If, by some miracle, coral polyps did survive, their numbers would have been few, certainly much smaller than they had been before the cataclysm. Most reefs, then, should exhibit a cessation of growth about 3,500 years ago with only limited renewed growth in a few areas. But this is not the case. Furthermore, study of coral growth rings shows that, despite Velikovsky's claims to the contrary, no major changes have occurred in the length of the year in recent millennia.

ANCIENT ASTRONAUTS COSMIC COLLISIONS includes chapters on Noah's Ark and Noah’s Flood, Atlantis, Velikovoky's "Worlds in Collision", ancient extraterrestrial visits, and pyramids and pyramidology.

Chapter 7 reveals what these different ideas have in common:

[They] reject or ignore the results of modern archaeology...

By tracing our origins to a non-earthly source, such theories also hold out the hope that our future problems might be solved by the same entity…

They claim that professional scholars are so blindly committed to a prevailing dogmatic view that they cannot recognize the validity of new concepts.

Finally, pages 171-175 give reasons why people believe in silly things contrary to science.

In all the topics he discusses Stiebing presents paranormalists with a case they should answer.   (A)