Some actual scientists, not the cargo cult creationist “scientists,” (I’ll get to them in a minute or two) have proposed a testable theory (the article mentions it possibly can be tested with more incoming data) that the speed of light may have been variable in our early universe. They believe, contrary to inflation*, that light in the early universe traveled significantly faster, and slowed to its current state as the universe thickened. By that I expect they mean the accumulation of dust, stars, supernova debri, all of that stuff that makes up the galaxies, nebulas, and other interstellar matter such as asteroids and comets. The mass of matter we can see and measure today.
It does make a fair bit of sense that most anything can travel faster through a less dense area than a more dense area. Anyone with a pail of water and some dirt can do a mud experiment with a stirring stick and quickly see that condensing matter slows things down. But we are talking about a long since held theory here. The big bang, inflation, and rapid expansion time line has been tested many times and the data keeps leaning towards this rationale being correct.
What this new idea is asserting, is during the period of inflation where matter had not started to condense yet, light was able to travel to the edges of the universe at a higher than light speed acceleration. I quote: “The varying speed of light theory suggests that the speed of light was much higher in the early universe, allowing the distant edges to be connected as the universe expanded. The speed of light would have then dropped in a predictable way as the density of the universe changed. This variability led the team to the prediction published today.”
Which is all fine and dandy, if new data can show this theory is correct then we will have some new insights to our universe and the physics underlying it all. It would be a big deal to throw Einsteins Theory of Relativity (lightspeed is constant) under the bus, but that remains to be seen.
Now how does all this tie in to the title of this post? I’m glad you were wondering 🙂 One of our creation “scientists” a Mr. Jason Lisle of the ICR (which should tell you all you need to know), his pet theory which mangles all known physics and cosmology in a deliberate fashion, is an attempt to call into question one of the biggest problems with creationist views. Which is time/age of the universe, and I’ll use Andomeda galaxy as an example. Andromeda is 2.5 million light years (MLY) distant, give or take a couple of years. Which means that light from Andromeda that we see today left the galaxy 2.5 MLY ago. We see it as it was 2.5 MLY in the past. This is a problem for YEC’s who sincerely believe, despite tons of data indicating otherwise, that the earth/universe is a mere 6000 years old.
So for creationists, time itself is a huge threat to their personal beliefs that must be called into question in order for them to be able to properly apply a good dose of cognitive dissonance to their personal reality, so they can maintain their beliefs with some degree of satisfactory stupidity. Enter Jason Lisle.
Lisle’s theory is that light travels at an infinite speed, until it reaches an observer, then it immediately drops to half light speed. This notion coupled with a huge dose of CD and wishful thinking magically disposes of their time problem. Except it doesn’t. It just makes them look more foolish.
But never let that get in the way of a good lie! You can bet even if this new theory gets shot down, or if it actually turns out to be right, or anything in between, creationists and their heralded creation “scientists” will jump at any opportunity to claim they are right and have been all along. Even when they aren’t even living in the same universe as the rest of us. Which at long last is the point I was trying to make 🙂
This is the article:
And this is a pretty good history and discussion of creationist “science.” Including Jason Lisle’s insipid dumbassery:
*Inflation. Inflation is the current cosmological theory that maintains directly after the big bang an enormous expansion of the universe happened very quickly, then it slowed down to what we see today. It is thought that inflation occured at faster than light speeds, meaning light wasn’t able to keep up with the edges of the expanding universe. This new theory as I understand it suggests that light was able to keep up with the expansion rate of inflation, meaning that light went right along for the ride. So I’m thinking even if this new idea gains traction it won’t alter the understanding of our universe all that much, only that Einsteins ToR, will have an asterisk added to it. Where light under certain special conditions can travel faster than normal. None of this however will make creation science a valid occupation.
Just for kicks: