Now, what is being proposed here is not a gentle shifting of the Earth's magnetic poles but something rather more dramatic. It involves a physical slippage of the Earth's crust over the substance of the planetary interior, like the skin of an orange skidding over the softer and deeper fruit, with the movement of entire continents abruptly from polar to warmer regions and vice versa. It is speculated that the absence of a steady fossil record showing the process of evolution in action is due to a past forged by catastrophic suddenness rather than by gradual change and adaptation. The work of Immanuel Velikovsky is given due mention, but also that it was eschewed and the man himself vilified by senior scientists. His books, however, won him public fame and became best-sellers, e.g. "Worlds in Collision", "Earth in Upheaval", "Ages in Chaos", which are of the highest erudition and scholarship and well worth reading, whether the ideas they propound may finally prove valid or not.
Atlantis itself and where it might have been is discussed in some detail. It is the stuff of legend that the island was destroyed by some unknown and possibly volcanic calamity. However, it is speculated that rather than disappearing to the bottom of some sea, it might have been what is now Antarctica. It is proposed that at the time of the Atlantean civilization and its advanced state of knowledge the island was located at a more temperate latitude, but the "skin-skid" which wiped-out the Atlanteans relocated it to the south pole and over the intervening 10,000 years or so Atlantis/Antarctica has become covered deeply with ice. All very interesting and I keep an open mind on such alternative and iconoclastic views to be both intrigued and entertained by them.
But how unstable is the Earth? I am reminded of the following which I wrote some time ago:
"An Unstable Earth?
As an ice-age progresses, glaciers advance in varying degrees from the polar regions in the direction of the equator, resulting in substantial proportions of the continents becoming covered in sheets of ice with a thickness of more than one kilometer. Now that is an amazing thought! To achieve this phenomenon, water is drawn from the oceans and frozen into ice. Correspondingly, the sea levels globally were anywhere up to 130 metres lower than they are today. Given the relatively shallow basin of the English channel and that between Alaska and Russia, it was once possible to walk between the various continents.
At the end of an ice-age, the ice-sheets retreated and so the melt-water drained back into the ocean basins, causing the sea levels to rise at a rate of several metres per century. Significantly, research by Bill McGuire, who is director of the Benfield UCL Hazard Research Centre, shows that in the Mediterranean area, there exists a good correlation between the rate of rise and fall of sea levels during the last ice-age and the number of volcanic eruptions in Italy and Greece. The connection was clearest following the retreat of glaciers which occurred around 18,000 years ago, resulting in extensive flooding of the globe, and an increase in sea levels to where they are now, with a corresponding 300% increase in the number of volcanic explosions in the Mediterranean region.
Now correlation does not necessarily reveal cause, but the following explanation has been offered to account for these findings. The huge mass of melt-water pouring onto the continental margins and marine island chains (where over 60% of the world's active volcanoes are) squeezes and distorts the Earth's crust, forcing-out underlying magma into an actual eruption. There is considerable variation in results from mathematical models as to the extent of sea level rise that might occur in the future, but it seems quite possible that hair-trigger volcanoes (those close to blowing their top) might be set-off by relatively modest increases. Sea-level rise is in itself a dangerous thing, since a one metre rise would threaten to inundate about a third of all agricultural land in the world, two metres would overwhelm the Thames flood-barrier under surge-conditions, while four metres would swamp Miami, placing it 60 kilometres off the US coast.
The higher that sea levels rise, the greater is the chance that the world's volcanoes may be triggered, and in extreme cases, the activation of geological faults could occur, resulting in more earthquakes and undersea landslides. Hence there is a tsunami risk too, for example the Storegga Slide off Norway 8,000 years ago, which sent a 20 metre high wave across the Shetland Islands and onto the east coast of Scotland. The whole notion brings to mind that the Earth is not a collection of unrelated parts but an holistic entity (the "Earth system"), wherein change in one feature may have ramifications through the whole planet."
"The Earth Fights Back," by Bill McGuire, Guardian Unlimited August 7, 2007. http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2007/aug/07/disasters/print.
"Forbidden History", Published by Bear and Co., Rochester, Vermont 2005, Ed. J. Douglas Kenyon)