Pwnage Olympics II Event #4: Young-Earth Creationists and a Very Big Universe

Uploaded by shanedk on 10.05.2010

I'm ready for Coughlan666's Pwnage Olympics! I've been in training for months: taking candy
from babies, shooting fish in barrels, and falling off logs, and I'm ready to pwn young-Earth
creationists! LET THE PWNAGE BEGIN!!!
One of my most popular videos examined Supernova 1987A and completely pwned the creationist
idea of a decaying speed of light. Responses were made to this video from Malcolm Bowden
and zebraone100. To avoid the bogus DMCA takedowns that creationists are famous for resorting
to, instead of playing the relevant parts of the videos, the creationist arguments will
be presented by a professional actor.
The universe can't be old! One guy who did one interpretation of one translation of Genesis
says it's 6,000 years old! It must be true!
Here's the thing: if the universe is young, it CANNOT be large. If the universe is large,
it CANNOT be young. Young-Earth creationists know this, and that's why they have to cast
aspersions on how astronomers measure the size of the universe. But to do this, they
have to deny basic trigonometry.
That supernova doesn't mean anything! We're seeing it in slow-motion! You don't know how
far away it was anyway! It MUST be closer! Relativity is wrong! Et cetera! Et cetera!
Brace yourself for the pwnage that is to come: because I'm going to PROVE, using NOTHING
more than telescopic observations that no one denies, and BASIC TRIGONOMETRY, that this
supernova is 168,000 light-years away.
The two observations that are relevant are the delay factor in the change of luminosity
between the remnant and the rings, and the angle from the remnant to the rings as measured
by the telescope itself.
These are absolute measurements, measured multiple times independently, and are NOT
subject to refutation. They're the DIRECT OBSERVED FACTS.
We set up our angles like this: x is the distance between the remnant and Earth. P-sub-x will
be a photon travelling along this path, y-sub-1 is the radius of the rings, and y-sub-2 is
the distance between this point in the ring and Earth. P-sub-y will be a photon travelling
along this path, and its total voyage will be y-sub-1+y-sub-2. We can use basic trigonometry
to express this total in terms of x; in other words, how much farther will P-sub-y have
to travel than P-sub-x? This gives us the extra distance as a portion of x. As one might
figure, it's very small. But how significant is this difference? Again, as observed by
our telescopes, the extra time it takes to traverse this distance is .658 years, or about
8 months. Again, this is measured directly by the telescope and is NOT subject to debate.
It's an OBSERVED FACT. We also know that c has not changed measurably in this time. We've
been measuring a constant speed of light for much, much longer than 8 months, and it's
SO constant that scientists gave up on determining the length of the meter some other way and
made it a fraction of the speed of light. A meter is defined as the distance light travels
in 1 299,792,458ths of a second. This definition was formalized on 21 October 1983, four years
before SN1987A was observed in our telescopes. However fast P-sub-y might have been travelling
at the start, for these last 8 months it most definitely was travelling at this exact speed:
299,792,458 m/s.
Again, this is all based on direct observations and is NOT open for debate.
So the distance P-sub-y covered in the last .658 years is 6.22 * 10^15m. Note that I'll
be expressing these numbers on the screen in scientific notation rounded to two decimal
places; you should know that the full unrounded number is what I used throughout the actual
calculations. Based on these IRREFUTABLE FACTS, we can calculate not only the distance of
this last leg of P-sub-y's journey, but since we know the ratio of this length to x, we
can calculate that as well. The distance to the supernova MUST be 1.58 * 10^21m, REGARDLESS
of what c was in the past. At the current measured speed of light, this ends up being
167,217ly. Just as is measured other ways. Isn't it amazing how consistently science
Now, what if the creationists are right? What if c has been slowing? Let's define t(x) as
the total time it takes P-sub-x to make its journey. We'll assume that t(x) = 6000 years.
This is the ONLY assumption we'll make, and it's VITAL to proving the creationist side.
We also have the total time for P-sub-y: 6000.658 years, and the ratio of travel time for P-sub-y:
Now, what exponent of c must the speed of light have been at that time? Let's let n
be that exponent. Now, we could do a whole bunch of messy math with logarithms, or, we
can do a much simpler shortcut. We'll just try different powers and see which one is
closest to this ratio. So n must be between 27 and 28. We'll weigh things on the side
of the creationists (although not by much) and have n be 27. So now we can calculate
the speed of light at the time of the supernova.
***NEW LINE*** Let's consider the first part of P-sub-y's journey, from the remnant to
the ring, over distance y-sub-1. At that speed, ***c to the power of 27,***
the time it would take photon y to reach the ring is 8.26*10^-214s. That's pretty fast!
In fact, it's MUCH shorter than Planck time! Planck time is about 5.39 * 10^-44s! But NOTHING
can be shorter than Planck time!
PWNED!!! In Hi-def! 1080p!!!
But that's just one object! I bet you don't have any more!
You LOSE that bet! Not only do I have a LOT more objects, I can do it with the most distant
objects we can see: quasars.
Quasars have a feature known as the Broad Emission Line Region. Basically, think of
a bunch of clouds--they're not clouds, but think of clouds--that move around the quasar,
all at the same distance, and all with similar densities. The quasar interacts with them
through gravitational shockwaves and radio pulses that travel at the speed of light,
causing them to ionize and emit spectral lines that we can detect.
Yep--we can do EXACTLY the same trigonometry with these as we did with the supernova! And
with NOTHING more than basic trig, we can PROVE that these quasars are as far away as
13 BILLION light-years!
Mom-my!!! The bad man's pwning my delusions!
That's right! Your miserable bronze-age ramblings are no match for science! The truth is, creationists,
the universe is FAR bigger, FAR older, and FAR more magnificent than your tiny little
minds are capable of conceiving. Now get out of our way, and let us live in the future.