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The Cold Snap That Civilised The World
The Telegraph (UK) ^ | 2-22-2002 | David Derbyshire

Posted on 02/23/2002 2:33:42 PM PST by blam

The cold snap that civilised the world

By David Derbyshire, Science Correspondent
(Filed: 22/02/2002)

A SUDDEN drop in temperatures 5,000 years ago ushered in the modern climate and may have encouraged the development of complex civilisations around the world.

Researchers studying ancient fish bones off the coast of Peru say the temperature fall heralded El Nino, the periodical warming of the Pacific which brings unusual weather patterns every two to seven years.

The rapidly changing weather, which followed several thousand years of post-Ice Age stability, triggered a new temple building culture in South America. Elsewhere, it may have forced Stone Age people to innovate, generating a period of development and the formation of large cities.

Scientists at the University of Georgia and the University of Maine looked at otoliths, tiny sensory structures in the inner ears of fish that grow in alternating opaque and translucent bands by amounts that reflect sea temperatures.

They report in Science that, before 5,000 years ago, sea temperatures off Peru were around four degrees warmer than they are today.

Suddenly, sea temperatures fell and the cycle of El Nino appeared. In normal years, prevailing winds push warmer surface waters to the Australian side of the Pacific. Cold water from the deeps rises to the surface off Peru. The Americas are dry, while monsoons hit southern Asia.

During El Nino years, however, severe floods and storms hit the west coast of America, while Asia suffers drought.

Although El Nino's arrival made the climate unstable, cooler weather in the intervening years increased the number of small fish and shellfish off America.

The effects of this may have been dramatic, triggering people living on the coast of Peru to build large temples and develop a more complex culture. The same spurt of climate-related development may have taken place across the world.

In Egypt, the drying of southern Egypt west of the Nile may have forced herders to move into the Nile valley, where the ancient Egyptian civilisation emerged a few hundred years later.

Dr Elizabeth Reitz, of the University of Georgia, said: "A change in El Nino frequency and the related increase in upwelling about 5,000 years ago may be related to changes in fishing resources and increased cultural complexity."

Dr Fred Andrus, of the University of Georgia, said: "Our data strengthen the argument that El Nino as we know it began relatively recently, since 5,000 years ago.

"This is more evidence that climate change is the norm, and climate stability is the exception in the Earth's history, even in relatively recent times.

"Given the enormous global impact of El Nino, it is important to understand that climate is a naturally variable system."


TOPICS: Culture/Society; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: archaeology; catastrophism; ggg; globalwarminghoax; godsgravesglyphs; history
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Anyone care to speculate what may have caused this change 5-6,000 years ago? I'll start:

#1. The Mediterranean which had been desicated since the Ice Age re-filled?

#2. The same for the Gulf Of Mexico?

1 posted on 02/23/2002 2:33:42 PM PST by blam
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To: blam
Noah's flood?
2 posted on 02/23/2002 2:38:24 PM PST by JZoback
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To: blam
Asteriod(sp) 4000 years into the Holocene, fits all of the facts.
3 posted on 02/23/2002 2:42:15 PM PST by Little Bill
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To: JZoback
"Noah's flood?"

I think Noah's Flood was the Black Sea Flood and came only after the Mediterranean was refilled and broke through the Bosphorus. The dates may not work. Good input though.

4 posted on 02/23/2002 2:44:40 PM PST by blam
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To: Little Bill
"Asteriod(sp) 4000 years into the Holocene, fits all of the facts."

The worldwide 'long ring' tree ring data indicate a catastropic (worldwide) event at 3195. Could this be your asteroid? Now, where did it hit? (Atlantis?)

5 posted on 02/23/2002 2:48:14 PM PST by blam
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To: blam
Can't say what triggers temple building. Organized or State religion might do it. El Nino doesn't seem to have the right kind of stuff to cause temple building.

Some temples are symbolic, others could be meteorological. Some may have been survey markers. Some may have been schools of science, math, or history.

I'm going to stick with the idea that a change in sea level would change tides and currents like the Gulf Stream and El Nino.

6 posted on 02/23/2002 2:48:38 PM PST by RightWhale
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To: blam
bump for later
7 posted on 02/23/2002 2:50:10 PM PST by Jeremy_Bentham
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To: blam
SUVs in Atlantis?
8 posted on 02/23/2002 3:01:57 PM PST by StriperSniper
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To: blam
Take a look at a map of northern Quebec and notice the ring-like shape of the Manicouagan Reservoir. This is the clearly the remnant of some kind of impact crater, though my guess is that it's age is in the millions of years instead of 5,000 or so.


9 posted on 02/23/2002 3:04:26 PM PST by Alberta's Child
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To: blam
a number of years ago, I read several articles about sea bed core borings in the Medeteranian. I don't remember when or the dates discovered, but the general gist of the stories were that the Medeteranian was dry land for eons, then all of a sudden, it changed into sea bottom - like over night, or at least in just a few years. This was probably about 10-15 years ago that this story hqppened.
10 posted on 02/23/2002 3:05:31 PM PST by XBob
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To: blam
Not far enough back, try the event that occured about +/- 4000 BC, just prior to the shift south and east of the start of civilization.

Look at conifer retreat in the North.

11 posted on 02/23/2002 3:05:40 PM PST by Little Bill
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To: blam
The Mediterranean Sea has very young, shallow evaporites in the sea floor sediments. These were drilled by the Deep Sea Drilling Project in the early 1970's. In several later papers, geologists proposed that the present sea filled when the Atlantic Ocean broke through at the Straits of Gibralter, filling what must have been a huge, formidible, desert-like sink.

On the other hand, the salt layers in the Gulf of Mexico, onshore Texas, Louisinana, Arkansas, and Mexico date back into the Jurassic. They may very well be related to similar salt layers in the North Sea and Germany (called the Zechstein). These were deposited when the continents were in a greatly different configuration, and may record the opening of the proto-Atlantic Ocean (in plate tectonic theory). There is no good evidence to suggest that the Gulf of Mexico, as we know it today, was ever devoid of water.

Another possibility to consider when talking about global climate changes, and/or ocean circulation changes, is the development of the Isthumus at Panama, connecting North and South America, and cutting of the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans at the middle latitudes.

12 posted on 02/23/2002 3:05:55 PM PST by capitan_refugio
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To: blam
Atuk: Cold this year.

Murak: Ayup.

Atuk: Was cold last year.

Murak: Ayup.

Atuk: Reckon we oughtta build us a temple. That'll help.

Murak: Ayup.

Atuk. Ayup.

13 posted on 02/23/2002 3:14:54 PM PST by GOP Jedi
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To: Alberta's Child
It looks more like the imprint left by a giant flying saucer.
14 posted on 02/23/2002 3:17:59 PM PST by CrossCheck
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To: XBob
"Medeteranian was dry land for eons, then all of a sudden, it changed into sea bottom - like over night, or at least in just a few years."

The Mediterranean has been completely dry at least 40 times, the last time was 5 million years ago. I think it was partially dry ( and in sections ) during the last Ice Age. There are scouring marks on the bottom near Gilbralter that hint at a great water break-through, as yet, undated.

15 posted on 02/23/2002 3:29:11 PM PST by blam
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To: Little Bill
"Not far enough back."

I meant to say 3195BC, that would be 5197 years ago. Is that far enough back?

16 posted on 02/23/2002 3:34:06 PM PST by blam
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To: blam
#1. The Mediterranean which had been desicated since the Ice Age re-filled?

Most likely, if true. More likely: flooding into the Black Sea.
Most likely: A shift of the Gulf Stream southward and/or a shift in the Japanese Current.

17 posted on 02/23/2002 3:34:42 PM PST by rightofrush
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To: capitan_refugio
"Another possibility to consider when talking about global climate changes, and/or ocean circulation changes, is the development of the Isthumus at Panama, connecting North and South America, and cutting of the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans at the middle latitudes."

Very good input. About the Gulf Of Mexico, I was thinking of a partial water level lowering, not a complete drying. I developed that idea while trying to explain how a city ( as yet unverified ) could be 2,100 feet underwater off the coast of Cuba. (It was built on the shore of a reduced water level Gulf?)

18 posted on 02/23/2002 3:41:37 PM PST by blam
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To: GOP Jedi
LOL
19 posted on 02/23/2002 3:44:08 PM PST by Dementon
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To: blam
Spot me 900 plus years, give or take, say 300, probably right on the money, for the first event, step forward 500 years or so for the rest of the events,at regular intervales through say 1200 BC?
20 posted on 02/23/2002 3:44:21 PM PST by Little Bill
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To: capitan_refugio
Here is what the worlds oceans looked like after a decrease in water level of 360 feet. Underwater Map Of The World
21 posted on 02/23/2002 3:49:12 PM PST by blam
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To: blam
Cold snap triggers temple building-- that's what's happening in Utah right NOW. Following the Olympics, many new recruits-- despite protests from world community foreboding unwanted proslyting. People came to Utah seeking fun and games, and get answers to questions, as well. Heading home to enlist. Big Boom in temple building to follow.
22 posted on 02/23/2002 3:50:36 PM PST by let freedom sing
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To: blam
noah's flood covered the entire earth.....god's word says so.....
23 posted on 02/23/2002 3:54:01 PM PST by is_is
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To: Little Bill
"Spot me 900 plus years, give or take, say 300, probably right on the money, for the first event, step forward 500 years or so for the rest of the events,at regular intervales through say 1200 BC?"

Okay. I have catastropic (worldwide) tree ring events at 2354BC (start bronze age), 1628BC (The Exodus), and 1159BC (David Plague),and 207BC (minor event). Will any of these work?

24 posted on 02/23/2002 3:58:02 PM PST by blam
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To: blam
The Mediterranean refilled several million years ago. It was the Black Lake that was flooded with salt water and probably became the source of the "Great Flood" stories. The Sahara dried out about 5,000 years ago also.
25 posted on 02/23/2002 4:26:29 PM PST by muawiyah
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To: RightWhale
Temple building is triggered by the fear of god(s). Any changes in the heavens would have been seen as actions of the gods. If those changes were followed by a cataclysmic event on earth such as an asteroid impact, it would certainly be considered as punishment. New temples and sacrifices would be required to appease the angry god(s), and prevent additional punishment. When you consider the fact that the Aztecs practiced human sacrifice until the soldiers of Imperial Spain invaded, the cultural "fear" must have been very deep seated indeed.

"Venus had a psychological effect upon the Maya and other Mesoamerican cultures, it has been shown that the Maya were timing some of their wars based on the stationary points of Venus and Jupiter. Humans were sacrificed on first appearance after Superior Conjunction when Venus was at its dimmest magnitude but they most feared the first Heliacal Rising after Inferior Conjunction." Quoted from This site

26 posted on 02/23/2002 4:29:36 PM PST by e_engineer
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To: blam
#2. The same for the Gulf Of Mexico?

My Brother and I have been discussing that possibility recently. Do you have any reference data or links?

27 posted on 02/23/2002 4:35:40 PM PST by FreeLibertarian
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To: blam
You're missing the East African event of around 3500BC +/-. Remember the Arabian coast on the Persian Gulf was an extention of the Summerian culture until about 2000 +/-BC.
28 posted on 02/23/2002 4:43:11 PM PST by Little Bill
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To: blam
That's a great map.
29 posted on 02/23/2002 4:49:11 PM PST by maro
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To: muawiyah
"The Mediterranean refilled several million years ago. "

I know, 5 million years to be exact. I'm arguing for a 'reduced water level' in the Mediterranean. Click on the link in post #21. See that the Meditteranean is 'sectioned' across Italy/Sicily/Africa with just a 360 foot water drop.
Some think the worlds oceans dropped by 500 ft.
After the last Ice Age, the water crashed through Gilbralter 'dam' then the Italy/Sicily/Africa 'dam' and then the 'dam' at the Bosphorus flooding the Black Sea. Also, notice on the map, no Persian Gulf and a landlocked Red Sea. (Note similar possibilities in the Gulf Of Mexico). This 'refilling' would sure make for a lot of 'flood' stories, huh?

30 posted on 02/23/2002 4:56:35 PM PST by blam
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To: Little Bill
Click here: Meteor Clue To End Of Middle East Civilisations
31 posted on 02/23/2002 5:02:35 PM PST by blam
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To: FreeLibertarian
"My Brother and I have been discussing that possibility recently. Do you have any reference data or links?"

There are some PhD friends of my son (Dr. blam) in SOCAL who are looking into the possibility but, other than a flurry of emails, I've not seen anything published on the subject.

32 posted on 02/23/2002 5:12:47 PM PST by blam
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To: blam
A dramatically smaller human population circa 3000 BC, and rising ocean waters, certainly would combine to make folks believe there was a worldwide flood going on - particularly where basins such as the Black Sea were flooded all at once.
33 posted on 02/23/2002 5:19:33 PM PST by muawiyah
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To: muawiyah
The population count was probably much higher than current estimates. If the count was as estimated, we would have died out.
34 posted on 02/23/2002 5:27:12 PM PST by Little Bill
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To: blam
1200 years to late, or the time frame is wrong.
35 posted on 02/23/2002 5:31:05 PM PST by Little Bill
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To: Little Bill
"1200 years to late, or the time frame is wrong."

So, you're looking for an event centered around +- 3500BC? I'll keep my eyes open.

36 posted on 02/23/2002 5:37:53 PM PST by blam
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To: Little Bill
At 1,000 BC the global population estimate is ~50 Million. Don't know what that number would back down to in 3,000 BC, assuming everything else was equal, which it never is...
37 posted on 02/23/2002 5:44:49 PM PST by LostTribe
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To: blam
I'm also lookng for one around 6000 BC, many hints, East Asia, north central, Andes, Northen America, Canada.
38 posted on 02/23/2002 5:50:25 PM PST by Little Bill
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To: LostTribe
The estimate is to small by at least a factor of ten.
39 posted on 02/23/2002 5:55:40 PM PST by Little Bill
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach;JudyB1938;farmfriend;history matters
Bump for 'Gods, Graves, Glyphs'
40 posted on 02/23/2002 5:58:38 PM PST by blam
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To: blam
Let me know if you hear anything interesting and I will do the same.
41 posted on 02/23/2002 6:16:51 PM PST by FreeLibertarian
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To: FreeLibertarian;RightWhale
(here is something I found in all the emails, I don't know how to include all the associated graphs, etc. Maybe you can find some use of this.)

I have done some rough calculations and simulations for questions concerning evaporation of the Gulf of Mexico and sea level.

Surface area of Gulf of Mexico: 15 million square km

Estimated depth evaporation rate: 1 meter/yr

Estimated volume evaporation rate for Gulf of Mexico: 1.7 trillion liters/hr

Normal volume flow of Mississippi R.: 23 billion liters/hr

An est. volume flow of Amazon R: 300 billion liters/hr

I have included flows of large rivers for comparison with the evaporation rate. So, for example, the flow of about 100 Mississippi Rivers are needed to compensate evaporation in the Gulf of Mexico. Only about 5 or 6 Amazon Rivers would be needed. It is stated that the Amazon flow represents about 20% of all the fresh water flowing into the oceans on earth. So given somehow that the Gulf of Mexico could be isolated from the oceans, I estimate it could take anywhere between 700 to 2100 years for the water level of the Gulf of Mexico to drop about 2000 ft due to evaporation, depending on the amount of water flowing from rivers, reduction of surface area, etc.

To isolate the Gulf of Mexico as it now stands seems to require essentially damming the lengths of the straight of Florida and the Yucatan channel. Each of these run about 200 kms shortest distance between land masses. BTW - this does not seem out of reach of immense human possibilities if we ever wanted to make a man-made dam:)

The depths of these I have been unable to determine exactly, but I estimate they could average anywhere between 2000 to 3500 ft. Is it possible that they are less, or that there is a path which is less, or perhaps there was smaller lengths due to since dissipated land mass?

This is all towards determining whether or not it could have been possible that the Gulf of Mexico was isolated or partially isolated enough so it could have a water level lower by approximately 2000 ft below today's sea level.

To get an idea of the competition between evaporation and inflow through ocean channels, e.g. through the straight of Florida, I have calculated some scenarios using a quasi-steady Bernoulli-like flow model. This allows consideration of the width and depth of channels connecting the Gulf of Mexico to the ocean with the Gulf of Mexico at a lower level than the ocean. This has assumed a drop at the channel.

1) Assume current effective channel width of 400 km, and try to maintain a difference of 2000 ft. The pressure is about 1000 psi. This is unsustainable from evaporation. It would take only about three days for the difference to decrease by 1000 ft.

2) Determine the maximum width of the channel and water level difference necessary to maintain an equilibrium with evaporation, ignoring additional inflow from rivers.etc:

Channel width
Equilibrium difference in level

------------------ --------------------------------- 400 km .................. 41 cm
200 km .................. 65 cm
40 km ................... 1.9 m
4 km .................... 8.8 m
1 km .................... 22 m
0.5 km .................. 35 m
7 m ..................... 2000 ft

3) Given the width of the channel, determine the change of the level with time for a variety of initial levels. This allows the possibility to determine time dependant scenarios, e.g. given some catastrophic or otherwise sudden event leaving the gulf very low, could the rise to equilibrium have been slow enough to take a long time >100 yrs? Or given that the channel width was decreased by some event, how long would it take to drop the level? I have attached a series of red arrow flow graphs showing the result with certain inital conditions as lines. These graphs are of the difference between sea level and gulf level in units of centimeters on the vertical scale and units of hours on the horizontal scale. The difference between sea level and gulf level means that a positive increase on the graph represents a lowering of the relative level of the gulf. Each is titled according to the width of the channel in kilometers. Note that the scale of the axis does change from graph to graph.

The summary from graphs is essentially the gulf fills up pretty quickly away from equilibrium except for the smallest channel widths less than 4 km. The symmetry from above and below equilibrium is interesting and useful for analysis. An isolation event creating a channel 4km will take about 6 years to drop the gulf by half its equilibrium level of 8.8 meters below sea level. Even a 0.5 km channel will take only about 25 years to reach half its equilibrium value of 35 meters. A 50 meter channel takes about 100 yrs to drop halfway to its equilibrium drop of about 160 m. As shown by the fact that only a 7 meter wide channel can sustain 2000 ft indefinitely, the only way to have sustain such large diifferences in depths is to have a very narrow channel - or of course, no channel at all.

42 posted on 02/23/2002 6:54:21 PM PST by blam
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To: Little Bill
No, not an asteroid. It appears that the general climate of the planet goes in cycles of approximately 500 years. Right now we are approaching the warmest peak of a cycle and that's why the earth is warming (more than modern pollution by itself). Back around 1 AD, another warm trend, Rome was able to march all the way to Germany. 500 AD a cold trend snows in a lot of European contact, the Roman Empire weakens, and the Dark Ages set in. 1000 AD it's warm again and now the Vikings are no longer iced into Scandanavia but are able to sail out and pillage. 1500 "the wee ice age" is at its coldest point. Etc.
43 posted on 02/23/2002 6:58:57 PM PST by DonQ
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To: blam
Thanks for the flag. Great stuff.
44 posted on 02/23/2002 8:16:39 PM PST by farmfriend
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To: blam
The wood in sediments in an abandoned deep water channel in the Mediterranean has been carbon dated to 5000 YBP. Hence, supporting evidence of a lowering of the Mediterranean.

Also, the Red Earth people had an extensive trade system in the Arctic at about the same time.

Both of these observations are consistent with a lowering of sea level during a warmer than Present segment of time.

Isotope studies of the Greenland and Antartic Ice Cores include assumptions that are consistent with Ocean waters periodically being as much as 9 degrees Celcius warmer than the Present.

There is NO evidence that CO2 was a SIGNIFICANT cause of ANY of these temperature and Ocean Level cycles.

45 posted on 02/23/2002 8:59:50 PM PST by Graewoulf
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To: Graewoulf
"Both of these observations are consistent with a lowering of sea level during a warmer than Present segment of time."

How did the ocean water levels get to be lower during warmer times?

46 posted on 02/23/2002 9:04:25 PM PST by blam
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To: blam
It is common for much of our scientific thinking to be contrained by our fear of the unknown, or in other words, our opinions are more important than the facts of observation. It is a rare scientist who admits that the cause is unknown of an observed effect.

Consequently, we rarely empirically test our opinions, assumptions, hypotheses or models. We rely on inference, usually statistical inference.

If sea level was low at the same time that the oceans were warm, then that was an observed effect of an unknown cause.

47 posted on 02/23/2002 10:56:50 PM PST by Graewoulf
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To: blam
Dear Blam:

You do know that "civilised" is incorrectly spelled, right?

It's spelled "civilized", moron!

Are you a recent graduate from a government "ska-ule"?

Dummed Down?

48 posted on 02/23/2002 11:09:19 PM PST by handk
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To: Little Bill
I was measuring population "then" against population "now". All past times have dramatically smaller populations than today.
49 posted on 02/24/2002 5:53:46 AM PST by muawiyah
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To: handk
Dear Blam:

You do know that "civilised" is incorrectly spelled, right?

It's spelled "civilized", moron!

Are you a recent graduate from a government "ska-ule"?

Dummed Down?

Apparently, you have inadvertenly 'wandered' onto an adult thread. Send me an email if you can't find you way back to the 'kiddie' section.

50 posted on 02/24/2002 7:07:02 AM PST by blam
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