The pitfalls of radiocarbon dating iraqi dating culture
It's a great argument except for one, little thing.
The water is coming out of the hose at a steady rate as our model assumed!
Creationists don't want their readers to be distracted with problems like that -- unless the cat is already out of the bag and something has to be said.
Tree-ring dating (see Topic 27) gives us a wonderful check on the radiocarbon dating method for the last 8000 years.
Sometimes it slows down to a trickle so that much more water is leaking out the barrel than is coming in; sometimes it goes full blast so that a lot more water is coming into the barrel than is leaking out. Lingenfelter's paper was written in 1963, before the cycles of C-14 variation we described had been fully documented.
Thus, the mere fact that the present rate of water coming in exceeds that of the water leaking out cannot be extrapolated back to a starting time. The point is that fluctuations in the rate of C-14 production mean that at times the production rate will exceed the decay rate, while at other times the decay rate will be the larger.
(The barrel is made deep enough so that we don't have to worry about water overflowing the rim.) Henry Morris argued that if we started filling up our empty barrel it would take 30,000 years to reach the equilibrium point.