Respectful Insolence

No, no, no, no, no!

I hate it when a fellow ScienceBlogger goes astray!

Fortunately, it’s been a long time indeed since I felt obligated to administer a dose of Insolence, Respectful or otherwise, to a fellow ScienceBlogger. It’s been even longer (as in, I think, never) that I’ve ever seen one whose resource I use regularly screw up so amazingly. I’m talking about Coby of A Few Things Ill-Considered, whose How To Talk To A Climate Skeptic (also found here) is a resource I turn to again and again and again when faced with denialist arguments about anthropogenic global warming. Indeed, I’ve been having periodic exchanges with a certain AGW denialist with whom I’ve tussled before, and How To Talk To A Climate Skeptic coupled with Skeptical Science have helped me enormously.

That’s why I take no pleasure in what I’m about to do, but two days ago Coby laid down a heapin’ helpin’ of anti-fluoridation fear mongering, chock full of dubious arguments (at best) that don’t belong on ScienceBlogs. Because Coby has been so good for so long in other areas, I’m willing to give him somewhat of a pass, but not so much that I will ignore or decline to rebut what he’s posted. Actually, it’s what his father, Dr. James S. Beck, who wrote the post and who has co-authored a book with well-known anti-fluoridation crank Paul Connett, the driving force behind the Fluoride Action Network entitled The Case Against Fluoride: How Hazardous Waste Ended Up in Our Drinking Water and the Bad Science and Powerful Politics That Keep It There, posted on Coby’s blog at Coby’s invitation, namely a post entitled The Case Against Fluoride.

Now, I understand that it’s Coby’s father and all, but he made quite the mistake in letting his father hijack his blog for a day. The hit to his reputation will be depressingly epic. Or maybe not. The right-wingers who don’t believe in anthropogenic global warming and would be most likely to be all over Coby for a misfire like this tend to be by and large, if not receptive, at least not overtly dismissive of the anti-government arguments used against water fluoridation; they may not take him on (much) for this. On the other hand, a lot of people who defend the science of AGW recognize dubious arguments when they see them.

Before I begin in earnest, let me just say that I really don’t have a dog in this hunt. I really don’t. (If you don’t believe me, search this blog for the term “fluoride” or “fluoridation.” You won’t find much at all, and most of it will be in comments.) Unlike the case with the the anti-vaccine movement and other pseudoscience and anti-science movements that I regularly write about here, I don’t have a strong feeling one way or the other about water fluoridation. I tend to go where the evidence leads me, and I realize that lately fluoridation has been questioned, given the widespread use of fluoride in toothpaste, which could potentially produce the same benefits, and increasing concerns about fluorosis. I get it. The issues surrounding the benefits and risks of water fluoridation are not straightforward. They never have been, actually. However, what I don’t get are the overheated simplistic arguments that come out of the anti-fluoridation movement. In fact, I had thought that the anti-fluoridation cranks disappeared decades ago; being anti-fluoridation is so…Cold War. It’s teh Communism, I tell ya! Just like Obama! Hmmmm. Come to think of it, maybe President Obama is the reason the fluoride cranks are coming out of the woodwork again. Certainly they came out of the woodwork in the comments of Coby’s post, and I expect the same thing to happen here. Perhaps we could have a contest: Which cranks are most persistent, tobacco/smoking denialists, AGW denialists, anti-vaccine loons, or anti-fluoridation activists?

Besides, Mandrake, have you ever seen Obama drink a glass of water?

And you do know, don’t you, the true purpose of introducing foreign substances into our precious bodily fluids:

But I digress. I ask your forgiveness because I love this particular movie and will use any excuse to quote it or use video from it. Just be glad I didn’t find an excuse to use the classic “Mein Fuhrer, I can walk!” scene or making some crack about how we “must not allow a mine shaft gap.”

Before I get into the post itself, let’s take a look at the main author of the book whose coauthor has sullied ScienceBlogs. Who is Dr. Paul Connett? I had, believe it or not, never heard of him before. Thankfully, the almighty Google is my friend, and it didn’t take much to find out a fair amount about him. First, take a look at his website, the Fluoride Action Network, for a minute. Coby’s father specifically mentioned this website as a source of more information; so I consider it fair game. Take a long look at the website. Peruse it. Feel anything familiar? I did. My pseudoscience Spider senses started tingling with a weaker version of the feeling I get when I read anti-science and pseudoscience blogs like Age of Autism–and with good reason too. One reason is right there on the front page in the form of 3,209 Medical, Scientific, and Environmental Professionals Sign Statement Calling for End to Fluoridation Worldwide

Oh no.

If there’s one very strong indicator of a crank, it’s the production of lists of scientists signing “statements” like the one above. For example, there’s the famous list of over 600 scientists against anthropogenic global climate change being circulated by James Inhofe (R-OK), which has been thoroughly debunked, the Perth Group signatories who reject HIV as the cause of AIDS, and the Discovery Institute’s list of scientists who dissent from Darwin or its list of physicians who reject “Darwinism.” If there’s one one major red flag indicating crankitude, it’s compiling lists like this. True, it’s not always a sign of crankitude, but when you examine the list and find out that most of the scientists actually don’t have any expertise in the field in question it’s a pretty good indication.

In the case of Connett’s list, we have:

  • 522 Nurses (RN, MSN, BSN, ARNP, APRN, LNC, RGON)
  • 458 DC’s (Doctor of Chiropractic, includes M Chiro)
  • 411 PhD’s – includes DSc (Doctor of Science); EdD (Doctor of Education); DrPH (Doctor of Public Health)
  • 356 MD’s (includes MBBS)
  • 291 Dentists (DDS, DMD, BDS)
  • 138 ND’s (Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine)
  • 77 Lawyers (JD, LLB, Avvocato)

Wait a minute. 458 chiropractors and 138 naturopaths? That means that at least 18.6% of the list is made up of CAM practitioners. Seriously. let me just put it this way. If you’re going to trumpet that you have all these “medical” and “scientific” professionals allegedly on your side, it sure doesn’t help your credibility to have so many quacks in the list mixed in with the real medical professionals. Make no mistake, naturopathy is a hodge-podge of quackery that includes homeopathy, reiki, traditional Chinese medicine and various detoxification woo, while many chiropractic practices are also highly dubious. In any case, naturopaths and chiropractors are hardly reliable health care professionals who can be counted on to evaluate science and epidemiology. Both CAM specialties tend to be anti-vaccine and anti-pharmaceutical to the core and can be reliably expected to be against fluoridation just on the basis of its not being “natural” or because it’s adding a chemical to water, regardless of what the evidence shows. Neither are lawyers. Come to think of it, neither are most nurses and doctors, either, and, I bet, most of the PhDs who signed.

In other words, it’s the classic appeal to authority. Dubious authority.

But what about Dr. Beck’s arguments, which are summaries of the arguments from the book he co-authored with Dr. Connett? His first argument is this:

Is fluoridation effective in reducing the incidence of dental caries (cavities)?

Fluoridation of public water supplies has been in effect somewhere in the world for seven decades now. Over that time the prevalence of dental caries has fallen in industrialized countries. This has been taken by many to indicate efficacy. But research has consistently shown that the decrease has occurred in countries without fluoridation to the same or greater degree as in those with fluoridation. Furthermore it is observed that in jurisdictions where fluoridation has been discontinued the incidence of caries has not risen. And studies comparing caries experience of cities fluoridated with cities not fluoridated have shown no difference, except where the nonfluoridated cities do better.

The answer to this first question is clearly no.

Well, that’s not what this systematic review says:

Fluoridation of drinking water remains the most effective and socially equitable means of achieving community-wide exposure to the caries prevention effects of fluoride. It is recommended (see also www.nhmrc.gov.au/news/media/rel07/_files/fluoride_flyer.pdf) that water be fluoridated in the target range of 0.6-1.1 mg/l, depending on the climate, to balance reduction of dental caries and occurrence of dental fluorosis, in particular with reference to care in hospital for those following stroke.

It was based on 77 studies. Multiple studies over several decades attest to the efficacy of water fluoridation in decreasing dental caries. Now, it may be possible that fluoridation of water is arguably no longer necessary in some communities because of the widespread use of fluoride toothpaste and other sources of fluoride, but to argue that fluoridation is not effective requires some very nice cherry picking of studies, as it’s not difficult to find a large number of studies supporting the efficacy of fluoridation There’s also the issue of better dental care. Dr. Beck seems to ignore the fact that better dental care is also associated with decreases in dental caries; it’s quite likely that better access to dentists and better self-dental care could have contributed to the decline in dental caries. Dr. Beck’s argument is as simplistic as he accuses fluoridation boosters’ arguments of being. Once again, an argument can be made that fluoridation may not be necessary anymore in some communities, but to argue that fluoridation is ineffective is just not supportable.

The next argument is that fluoridation is dangerous. It is true that one well known potential complication of fluoride therapy is fluorosis; no one argues that. The vast majority of fluorosis is so mild that it isn’t even noticeable. One can argue if the benefit in terms of reductions in dental caries is worth the risk of mild fluorosis at the concentrations usually used, but it seems like a reasonable trade-off to me in most cases.

More worrisome are the other risks Dr. Beck cites:

Aside from dental fluorosis, evidence uncovered over the last two decades has shown an association of fluoride in drinking water with lower IQ in children. There are over twenty published studies showing this association. In laboratory studies of animals and of aborted human fetuses an association with abnormalities of cells of the brain has been found. Also it has been shown that fluoridation is associated with high levels of lead, a known neurotoxin, in the blood of children.

It irritates the crap out of me that Dr. Beck doesn’t include citations in his post. I couldn’t look up the articles easily and see for myself. No doubt he wants people to buy his book, but, quite frankly, I’m not going to buy his book. If he wants to convince in the blogosphere, he really should include links to all the studies. Still, it wasn’t too hard to find the study claiming lower IQ, which appears to be this one. A quick perusal demonstrates–surprise! surprise!–that there’s much less to this study than meets the eye. First, the “high” fluoride group was exposed to pretty darned high levels (8.3 ± 1.9 mg/L, which is more than eight times the typical level in fluoridated water). Second, the error bars were large and highly overlapping. Third, the study has not been replicated. Let’s just put it this way: Convinced, I am not. A perusal of a few other studies didn’t look any better. Who knows? There might be a case to be made here; if there is, though, Dr. Beck didn’t really make it.

I’m also not at all impressed with this argument either:

The possible incidence of bone fracture with fluoridation has been studied with mixed results. One of the strongest studies is presented in a paper by Li et al. published in 2001 which shows a rising prevalence of hip fracture correlated with a rising intake of fluoride starting with concentrations comparable with those used in fluoridation in North America. And this is just one example that suggests that hip fracture is caused by fluoridated water.

The study to which Dr. Beck is referring is this one, Li et al, from 2001. I’ll show you what I mean. This is one of two “money graphs” from the paper showing the relationship between overall fracture risk and fluoride in water:

i-b88847ec4ca0656a66ff609279116c69-fig2.jpg

Notice that the low point of the graph is right around 1 ppm, which is right around where fluoride concentrations are in areas where water is fluoridated. Hmmmm. If you believe this graph represents causation rather than just correlation, you’d want to fluoridate your water to be right around 1 ppm in order to decrease the prevalence of fractures, wouldn’t you? After all, 1 ppm is the low point on the graph.

In all fairness, there is another graph that looks at hip fracture prevalence adjusted for age and BMI. It’s that graph that Dr. Beck appears to be zeroing in on, and it looks like this:

i-a1b30a3331a69b7036575d952d042213-nfig003.jpg

Note that in this graph only the very highest fluoride level is statistically significantly different than the 1 ppm level. In any case, this second graph is what we in the biz call a “subgroup analysis.” My guess is that the authors were either puzzled by or didn’t like the first graph because it didn’t show the expected association. So, as researchers are far too frequently wont to do, they probably started looking for subgroups in which they could find a statistically significant result that they did like. This is, unfortunately, how a lot of medical research “finds” statistically significant results, particularly in retrospective studies. Sometimes it’s dishonest when investigators do it; more often it’s more desperation for a way to salvage a negative study with some positive results. (This latter motivation is particularly true in negative clinical trials of a new treatment.) Unfortunately, subgroup analysis is highly dubious if the subgroups were not specified and incorporated into the design of the study from the very beginning. When they’re done post hoc, they are virtually always regarded with suspicion and their results as, at best, hypothesis-generating rather than hypothesis-confirming. Unfortunately, in the vast majority of studies, it’s very difficult to tell whether the subgroup analysis done was incorporated into the original design of the trial.

Then there’s the issue of the number of actual fractures that can be analyzed, which is very small. Indeed, the authors themselves estimate that a study of at least 400,000 people would be required to answer the question of whether there is a relationship between hip fractures and fluoridation levels in water. It would also require a different trial design, namely a cohort study. Finally, also note that this is an ecological study, and ecological studies are well known in epidemiology for producing false positives. I’ve even blogged about this, as has Epiwonk. The bottom line is that ecological studies frequently find effects that aren’t there or find larger effects than more rigorous studies later find to be supported.

Let’s just put it this way. Li et al is just not particularly convincing, and there are no others that I could find that show such a relationship. A quick perusal of other studies that I tried to find to back up Dr. Beck’s other claims–at least those that I could find without doing too many PubMed searches; by this point it was late last night and I was rapidly tiring of looking up Dr. Beck’s references–reveal nothing any more impressive than either of these studies. It’s possible that I’m wrong. It would have taken a lot more time to go through all these claims than I had last night. Maybe if I have the time and inclination tonight I’ll look up a few more.

In the meantime, I remain completely underwhelmed.

Finally, Dr. Beck argues that, because it is ineffective and risky, fluoridation is therefore unethical and, even if it did work, it would still be unethical:

Given the evidence that fluoridation is ineffective and that it is unsafe, the question of ethicality is easily answered in the negative. But even if it were effective, it would not be acceptable for the following reasons.

It is unethical to administer a substance or procedure to a person without the consent of that person, consent informed by a qualified professional who must answer questions from that person and who must inform the recipient of the reasons for the administration and of possible side effects. Such consent has never been sought from, much less given by, those whose tap water is fluoridated.

Well, yes, water fluoridation would be unethical if it were indeed ineffective and dangerous, but it is not. It would also cost a hell of a lot of money for no benefit. As for the argument that, even if fluoridation were effective, it would still violate informed consent, well, that’s actually a political and ethical argument about acceptable and desirable public health measures, not a scientific argument. It’s perfectly fine to make that argument, if that’s what you believe, but it never ceases to irritate me how, like “health freedom” supporters of alternative medicine, anti-fluoridation activists seem to feel compelled to make their resistance to policy sound like a scientific argument.

Of course, one wonders why Dr. Beck and his co-authors don’t appear to be similarly worked up by the fact that most municipal water systems use chlorine in the water supplies as a disinfectant. It’s in there, and most of us who live in urban areas drink it, and the chlorine left over is on the order of 0.5 ppm, which is on the order of the fluoride concentration. Why is it OK to chlorinate water to kill bacteria but not OK to fluoridate water to try to reduce the incidence of dental caries? Using the same arguments, why isn’t Dr. Beck arguing that putting chlorine in drinking water similarly violates the principle of informed consent?

Then there’s Connett himself. It doesn’t take much to see that he’s descending into crankery, if he’s not already there. For example, he’s shown up being interviewed by the odious promoter of quackery, Dr. Joe Mercola, who asserts that the real cause of dental caries is high fructose corn syrup. That’s not enough, though. Connett has also shown up on the web video interview show of the even more odious seller of quackery, Mike Adams. It gets even better, though. Connett has also been on the show of über-conspiracy theorist crank Alex Jones.

That’s not the worst of it, though. He’s been showing up around Autism One. Yes, that’s right. Paul Connett appears to be associating with anti-vaccine cranks. Indeed, apparently he’s worked with the even bigger crank Russell Blaylock.

Yes, yes, I know that just being interviewed by a crank does not necessarily mean Connett is a crank. After all, anyone can be taken in by a crank, and it’s probably impractical to vet every interviewer who asks to interview you, particularly when you have a book (and, more importantly, a message) to sell. However, there comes a point when the cranks interviewing you are so cranky that you really should be able to figure it out; Google is available to all. With Dr. Connett, there is a disturbing pattern; he’s covered nearly all the crank bases, even Whale.to, where he is praised, and Gary Null. Cranks appear drawn to his ideas, and he doesn’t send them away.

The bottom line is that I’m exceedingly disappointed in Coby for posting this tripe on ScienceBlogs, just as disappointed as I’m sure he’d be in me were I ever to do a post with Ian Plimer, Lord Monckton, Steve Milloy, or another AGW denialist expressing “skepticism” about the scientific consensus regarding global climate change. He’d give me a right nasty blog smackdown I bet, and I’d richly deserve it. I realize that we all have our blind spots, and, of course, this is Coby’s father who’s teamed up with someone who appears to be an utter crank to write a book. I can even understand how Coby might want to help his dad sell some books. But, damn, for someone who’s in the past done such a spectacular job deconstructing pseudoscientific and denialist arguments regarding global warming, Coby sure has gone down the rabbit hole of bad arguments regarding fluoridation. Worse, this is even in the case of a situation where, when trying to weigh the risks of fluorosis versus the benefit against dental caries, there actually is probably a case to be made that a one-size-fits-all approach to water fluoridation may not even be necessary anymore. However, such a case, if it is made, will be nuanced and complex, based on a realistic assessment of the benefits, risks, and costs. Dr. Beck’s argument was anything but that. After all, he did entitle his post The Case Against Fluoride, and there clearly was a reason for that, namely to argue more like a lawyer advocating for a client rather than a scientist soberly assessing the evidence.

Comments

  1. #1 Twinarp
    December 2, 2010

    As a 55 yr old, who has a mouth full of Mercury amalgam fillings, I have neices, nephews and workmates under 30 who can demonstrate by opening wide, the effectiveness of fluoridation of the water, HAVING NEVER HAD A SINGLE FILLING!!! Anecdotal, yes. The water in Melbourne was fluoridated in the 70’s and the decline in decay (fillings) dental caries, has been maintained. These kids don’t fear dentists, because most of them have never met one.
    Get over yourselves.

  2. #2 Noddin
    December 2, 2010

    Dude, what the fuck? Fluoride? Every time I come here you have some anal probe post up obsessing over some nonsense the rest of the sane world has passed over. Do I need to explain all the reasons why fluoride is harmful? Did you take a science course dumbass? Fluorine is harmful as hell. Try drinking even an ounce of fluoride, then tell me you feel OK. No; you won’t. Yeah, of course it will prevent cavities. It also prevents brain growth and health. Jesus, drink a gallon of bleach and you probably won’t have a cavity, but you might have some other issues, lol. You seriously believe all you’re years writing essays for comfortable professors means anything. Real life counts more than your stupid ass lab job. go outside right now and drink a gallon of sewer water, tell me that shit is healthy. If you won’t, you expose yourself as a hippocrite. Look around your body. There are shit chemicals all around us and your shill ass just sits here and acts fussy and condessending. D you realize your cover is practically blown? I can only imagine what your opulent ass looks like sitting at the keyboard with your cheetos. You probably also have Dasani water by you because you don’t have the balls to drink government subsidized tap water. That tells me all I need to know about you, ORAC. (B-ORAC). … Peace.

  3. #3 Sid Offit
    December 2, 2010

    Orac, too bad your here rather than at the beat-down I’m administering to you at:

    http://scienceblogs.com/illconsidered/2010/11/the_case_against_flouride.php

  4. #4 Sid Offit
    December 2, 2010

    Dr. Strangelove? Really? The level of science at which this blog functions astonishes.

  5. #5 Jarred C
    December 2, 2010

    Hey Orac,

    In case you missed it, Coby posted a link to all the book’s references:

    http://fluoridealert.org/caseagainstfluoride.refs.html

    It’s easily missed, because he posted it in the comments.

  6. #6 Sid Offit
    December 2, 2010

    If there’s one very strong indicator of a crank, it’s the production of lists of scientists signing “statements” like the one above. If there’s one one major red flag indicating crankitude, it’s compiling lists like this.

    Sounds like one of your fluoride defenders who had this to say:

    It’s funny that over 90 professional health organizations around the world, such as the WHO, US FDA and Health Canada, promote the use of fluoridation for the safe prevention of dental cavities.

    Wait a minute…138 naturopaths?

    Naturopaths or public health functionaries. Oh whom do I believe?

    As to efficacy

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11021861
    OBJECTIVE: To review the safety and efficacy of fluoridation of drinking water.
    RESULTS: 214 studies were included. The quality of studies was low to moderate.

  7. #7 Sid Offit
    December 2, 2010

    Among persons aged 6-49, 16.0% had very mild fluorosis, 4.8% had mild fluorosis, 2.0% had moderate fluorosis, and less than 1% had severe fluorosis (Figure 1).
    http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/databriefs/db53.htm

    Assuming a birth cohort of 3-4 million and eliminating very mild fluorosis – because those with that condition don’t even know they have it – we have millions of Americans with irreversibly damaged teeth. A small sacrifice to the god of public health.

    Also from the CDC

    Adolescents aged 12-15 had the highest prevalence of dental fluorosis (40.6%)

    —————-
    I’m astonished at your cavalier attitude regarding the state’s damaging children’s teeth. Bring yourself back to reality and ask yourself how you’d like it it someone did this to one of your children

    —————-

    One wonders why Dr. Beck and his co-authors don’t appear to be similarly worked up by the fact that most municipal water systems use chlorine in the water supplies as a disinfectant.

    Err, because the water is undrinkable without the chlorine.

    Chlorination is the process of adding the element chlorine to water as a method of water purification to make it fit for human consumption as drinking water.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chlorination

    —————

    Dr. Joe Mercola, who asserts that the real cause of dental caries is high fructose corn syrup.

    Sugar associated with carries? Outrageous!

  8. #8 MarkW
    December 2, 2010

    In the last UK general election, my local Green Party candidate had an anti-fluoride statement in her election material. I was quite surprised that anti-fluoride-ism still has any currency, and I had been considering voting for her until I saw it.

    Incidentally, isn’t it usually “flouride” in most of the crank material? lol

  9. #9 Beaker
    December 2, 2010

    “Naturopaths or public health functionaries.”
    No, Naturopaths are cranks. As are chiropractors.

    “As to efficacy http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11021861
    OBJECTIVE: To review the safety and efficacy of fluoridation of drinking water.
    RESULTS: 214 studies were included. The quality of studies was low to moderate.”

    I’ll cite the parts that you omitted:
    “Water fluoridation was associated with an increased proportion of children without caries and a reduction in the number of teeth affected by caries.”
    And:
    “A dose-dependent increase in dental fluorosis was found. At a fluoride level of 1 ppm an estimated 12.5% (95% confidence interval 7.0% to 21.5%) of exposed people would have fluorosis that they would find aesthetically concerning.”

    And the conclusion:
    “The evidence of a beneficial reduction in caries should be considered together with the increased prevalence of dental fluorosis. There was no clear evidence of other potential adverse effects.”

    In case you missed it, this is exactly what Orac wrote.

  10. #10 David Marjanović
    December 2, 2010

    Drinking water isn’t fluoridated over here, but every single toothpaste contains fluoride, and I can’t see why fluoridating drinking water should be a problem (except, perhaps, a slight waste of money).

    US drinking water has much, much, much bigger problems! Arsenic levels, for instance, are crazily high in many places. And half of the American drinking water I’ve tasted tastes horrible.

  11. #11 Ex-drone
    December 2, 2010

    Sid Offit@5:

    I left the comment about the number of professional health organizations on A Few Things Ill-Considered. It was intended to be a quick observation, not a compelling argument. Nonetheless, there is a difference between that observation and Orac’s comment about how cranks compile lists of professional dissenters. In both cases, the simple argument-from-authority angle is, indeed, a logical fallacy. However, public health organizations usually develop policy recommendations based on medical/scientific consensus, which is the outcome of the scientific process, whereas crank lists, as Orac notes, are usually comprised of people whose opinion or belief is outside of their area of expertise or study, with no deference to the scientific process. I meant by my comment that the scientific process has informed a medical consensus that fluoridation is a safe and effective public policy, not that the policy is simply supported by authorities. I guess that I should not have short-handed it.

    Orac:

    Thanks for the rebuttal post. When I read A Few Things Ill-Considered, I thought at first that the article was an April Fools Day type post or a catchy way to do a book review, but I was saddened to conclude that the article was serious.

  12. #12 iamnothouse.com
    December 2, 2010

    You can’t fight here! It’s the war room!

    On a serious note, thanks for posting the meta-analysis of fluoride’s efficacy (I hadn’t seen it before). It still surprises me how some people don’t quite grasp the importance of dosing, but rather that ALL TEH FLUORIDEZ ARE BAD. Though it didn’t take long for the trolls to come out from under the bridge, it’s logical, calm rebuttal like this which ultimately bears out in the end.

  13. #13 Joseph
    December 2, 2010

    @Sid: See, cranks compile lists of professionals, which are typically small lists, given the number of professionals in the pertinent professions. Science-based people often compile lists of scientific organizations. This is very different (although still an argument from authority.)

    BTW, I’m very dissapointed at Coby. I’ve frequented his blog from time to time for the AGW discussions.

    At least they didn’t say fluoride causes autism!

  14. #14 captainahags
    December 2, 2010

    @ Idiot at #2. Yes, fluorine is a powerfully electronegative element. This does not mean that in small concentrations it can’t do something useful (and no, not homeopathic concentrations, just to get that out of the way) Your point about sewage is a complete non sequitur, and I would hazard a guess that you have absolutely no scientific expertise, other than “I read something like this somewhere on the internet”. Had you actually read the post, you would have realized that orac posted plenty of links and cites that completely debunk your arguments. But, you were probably too busy chanting “natural, good! Fluoride, bad!” And yes, it’s an animal farm reference.

  15. #15 Ender
    December 2, 2010

    Ha! I see that everyone else has simply put Noddin down as an idiot crank (correctly) with no understanding of even basic science and passed right over him, but I’m bored so I may as well:

    I’m not sure you’ve had much contact with the rest of the ‘sane world’, nor apparently with ‘science education’. Pure fluorine is not the same thing as flouridation at lower concentrations. The dangers of pure fluorine are indeed well known, the evidence suggests that flouridation of drinking water is safe and beneficial*

    That’s the only thing in your entire post that comes anywhere close to making a relevant point, even if it’s a stupid point a child would know better than to write, so the rest can be safely ignored. Having said that, it’s best not to come in swinging, throwing out ad-homs and insults when you can’t even spell.
    I’m sure Orac is terrified that people will find out he’s a ‘hippocrite’ (A hippogryph that criticises a lot)

    *Not for the nutters out there who can’t understand evidence and risk, but there is a non-zero chance that evidence will acumulate and show that fluoridisation is not a good idea. As it is however, the evidence is not there, and scaremongering and crankery over hypotheticals is not warranted.

  16. #16 Orac
    December 2, 2010

    At least they didn’t say fluoride causes autism!

    Yet.

    If course, with Dr. Connett showing up on Autism One radio, you do realize that it probably isn’t long before he does say something like that, don’t you?

    In any case, big surprise that Sid Offit is not just an anti-vaccine crank, but an anti-fluoridation crank as well. Crank magnetism in action.

  17. #17 coby
    December 2, 2010

    Orac, it really pains me to see what an unfair approach you have taken in this post, it is a diservice to your readers. I don’t know what to say, especially after your kind words about my How to talk to a Sceptic guide. But what a crock of ad hominem, guilt by association, and irrationality!

    Anyway, for any of your readers who want to think about it for themselves I will make a few specific points. A major thrust of Orac’s attack on this post is pure, unabashed ad hominem. “Paul Connett is a crank”. What did he say? Apparently it is uttterly irrelevant because he allowed himself to be interviewed by someone that we, at least, know to be a hard core conspiracy theorist crank. So I guess the argument is not even actually that Paul Connett himself is a crank, but he has been seen with a crank. Close enough for jazz and blogging!

    We also have a more than healthy dose of argument by ridicule. You see, this crazy character in “Dr Stranglove” thought commies put fluoride in the water to control our minds, so …um…so what? So fluoridation is safe, I guess, or at least we don’t need to examine the science of the issue. Saves lots of time and effort, I like it!

    What’s next on the logical fallacies list today…hmm. How about a nice strawman. The post being attacked mentions no list of people opposed to fluoridation. Orac does not know if the book mentions a list of people opposed to fluoridation (I don’t either). Yet we are treated to three paragraphs about a list of people opposed to fluoridation that appears on the advocacy site associated with the book and at least one of the authors. Apparently some chiropractors and naturopaths signed this list. Slam dunk! If a single chiropractor anywhere believes it, it must be wrong. We have 458 here, it will take 459 peer reviewed papers to make up for that one!

    Next we are finally presented with something concrete, a review of 77 studies that apparently recommends fluoridation. But this is cherry picked because there have been many such reviews and they do not all agree. “The issues surrounding the benefits and risks of water fluoridation are not straightforward. They never have been.” said Orac. Why is his argument so straightforward then?

    This I find baffling. According to Orac “There’s also the issue of better dental care. Dr. Beck seems to ignore the fact that better dental care is also associated with decreases in dental caries; it’s quite likely that better access to dentists and better self-dental care could have contributed to the decline in dental caries. Dr. Beck’s argument is as simplistic as he accuses fluoridation boosters’ arguments of being.” ?? Aside from the fact that the post being examined is a synopsis of a full length book, so how can Orac characterize what the whole argument is, I really don’t know what he means by this. The argument presented in the post on this aspect was:

    Fluoridation of public water supplies has been in effect somewhere in the world for seven decades now. Over that time the prevalence of dental caries has fallen in industrialized countries. This has been taken by many to indicate efficacy. But research has consistently shown that the decrease has occurred in countries without fluoridation to the same or greater degree as in those with fluoridation. Furthermore it is observed that in jurisdictions where fluoridation has been discontinued the incidence of caries has not risen. And studies comparing caries experience of cities fluoridated with cities not fluoridated have shown no difference, except where the nonfluoridated cities do better.

    If anything, the argument does imply other causes for the drop in dental caries, such as improved dental care, and not fluoridation, that is kind of the point.

    The next point is about harmful effects. Orac includes this quote “evidence uncovered over the last two decades has shown an association of fluoride in drinking water with lower IQ in children. There are over twenty published studies showing this association.” and then, again I am baffled, he says this “it wasn’t too hard to find the study claiming lower IQ, which appears to be this one.” WTF? “There are over 20” What does he mean it “appears to be this one”. I will be more charitable to him than others have been to the post in question and not make an accusation of dishonesty here, but I will call foul. Orac expresses his frustration at not having the citations for the book, but actually they have been in the post as an update for over a day and they did appear in two places in the comments and I could have provided them if asked.

    http://fluoridealert.org/caseagainstfluoride.refs.html

    Next is more disappointment. The Li et al paper is mentioned again and the same presentation of that U shaped curve showing “optimum” fluoride levels at 1 ppm. But it was pointed out at least four times that Beck was referring to the portion of the paper about *hip* fractures, that graph is not about hip fractures. See here for a very substantive treatment of the Li et al paper, a comment that Orac should have been aware of. There was another from James Beck here also noting the distinction. Why does Orac put the U graph, irrelevant to the claims he is supposedly debunking, front and center? Yes, the next paragraph “to be fair” acknowledges that, but too late, he has already been unfair.

    I thought I was done, but really the next bit needs addressing. On the ethics of this issue his answer is: “One wonders why Dr. Beck and his co-authors don’t appear to be similarly worked up by the fact that most municipal water systems use chlorine in the water supplies as a disinfectant” This would be a red herring, no? Yes it may or may not be another health issue to think about, but the ethical issues raised are those around administering medication, which is what fluoride is being treated as, this has nothing to do with chlorine for disinfection or tang powder for flavour. Can’t Orac even acknowledge the very straightforward and correct argument that is actually there?

    Overall, I am a bit saddened by this post, I had hoped to read reason and supporting evidence. If anti-fluoridation is such an easy debunk, why all the flawed reasoning and logical fallacies? That is not a rhetorical question.

    Yes, this cpncerns my Dad, which is why, unfamiliar as I am to this issue, I am starting from the assumption that the book is sincere and careful. But it does not mean I am impervious to sound counter arguments. So let’s hear one.

    Orac, would you read the book if given to you? I would take your criticisms much more seriously if you did, assuming of course they would finally be substantive.

  18. #18 Greg Fish
    December 2, 2010

    Wow, the post is just hours old and the idiots are already out in full force…

    For example, here’s Noddin, #2…

    Fluorine is harmful as hell. Try drinking even an ounce of fluoride, then tell me you feel OK.

    Guess what brainiac, we’re talking about PPMs. Would you like to google that? It stands for parts per million, so to drink an ounce of flouride in your water supply, you’d need to drink gallons and gallons. You’d be dead from the quantity of water in your system before that. On and by the way, those PPMs? They’re generally out of your system before you get exposed again.

    According to your imbecilic excuse for logic, because you can’t consume anything that would be harmful to you in quantities which you’re not supposed to consume it, it must be a horrifically harmful poison. But guess what? No asks you to overdose on flouride or drink bleach. In fact, there are warning labels that tell you not to do that! Are you aware of those? Have you actually read the warnings on your household cleaners and detergents? Or did you skip that part because it’s harder than just throwing a temper tantrum?

    Tell me, when you have a headache, do you take two pills of Motrin or Aspirin, or do you swallow the whole bottle? Since you’re apparently alive enough to belch furious tripe here, I’m assuming it’s the former, and if you have enough reasoning capacity to do that, why the hell are you talking about gulping sewer water you idiot?

    And here’s good, old, Sid “Forgot To Take My Rabies Shot” Offit…

    Orac, too bad your here rather than at the beat-down I’m administering to you at…

    Really Sid? You’re “administering a beatdown” to someone without the person present? Congratualtions, you’s just branded yourself both a braggard with an over-inflated ego, and a coward. Oh and your “beat down?” Yeah, not very impressive, just posturing, and repetitions of claims that have long been addressed. One of them managed to be somewhat valid though (the one about toothpaste negating the need for flouride in water), and was noted by Orac as something to consider in this very post.

    Really, start paying attention and read the damn posts before you start spouting off as usual. Maybe you’ll even learn something, though with your track record, I doubt it.

  19. #19 René Najera
    December 2, 2010

    Noddin:

    You seriously believe all you’re years writing essays for comfortable professors means anything.

    Sid Offit:

    Orac, too bad your here rather than at the beat-down I’m administering to you at…

    There, did you notice it? I now have compelling evidence that Noddin and Sid Offit are one and the same… Let’s face it, this evidence far outweighs their crazy ideas.

  20. #20 Orac
    December 2, 2010

    A major thrust of Orac’s attack on this post is pure, unabashed ad hominem. “Paul Connett is a crank”. What did he say? Apparently it is uttterly irrelevant because he allowed himself to be interviewed by someone that we, at least, know to be a hard core conspiracy theorist crank. So I guess the argument is not even actually that Paul Connett himself is a crank, but he has been seen with a crank. Close enough for jazz and blogging!

    I don’t have time to address all your points, because I have to run off for clinic, but I find it telling that you only focus on Alex Jones. I’m afraid it was not just one crank, but many cranks, including Alex Jones, Joe Mercola, Mike Adams, and the woman (whose name escapes me) from Autism One Radio. I’m sorry, but when you associate with such people so regularly there’s usually a reason. Would you spare an anti-AGW crank or fail to mention it if he showed up on numerous conspiracy crank sites, like Prison Planet, for interviews? I highly doubt it. In any case, the major thrust is not “ad hominem.” It’s simply pointing out that this guy’s ideas are so cranky that the real cranks like him a lot.

    As for the study, let’s just put it this way. Medical studies are what I know and what I do, and this fracture study does not provide particularly compelling evidence. Indeed, the second graph is what we in the biz call a “subgroup analysis.” My guess is that the authors didn’t like the first graph because it didn’t show an association, at least not one that they liked; so they started looking for subgroups in which they could find a statistically significant result that they did like. This is, unfortunately, how a lot of medical research “finds” statistically significant results, particularly in retrospective studies. (Damn. I should have put this paragraph in my post. Maybe I’ll update it.) Also note that this is an ecological study, and ecological studies are well known in epidemiology for producing false positives. I’ve even blogged about this.

    Let’s just say that I’m just as disappointed in you for publishing such bad arguments as you are with me for doing what I normally do when I encounter bad arguments. I can live with that. More after clinic, perhaps, if I have time…

  21. #21 fenton fomite
    December 2, 2010

    Why can loons never learn “the dose makes the poison”? TEK 2000 ASPRINS N TELL ME HOW U FEELZ!!!!one!ONE!eleventy-leven!!! LOL. Um, yes, 2 aspirin may help your aches and pains. 2000 will kill you. It’s only in your heads that anyone is claiming any medication is safe at any and all doses. It makes me suspect a small but significant percentage of the population (those who are conspiracy mongers, natch) takes daily lead supplements.

  22. #22 Peter
    December 2, 2010

    I would consider your equating fluoridation and chlorination of municipal water systems a false dichotomy. Chlorine is used as a disinfectant specifically to avert an acute health risk from pathogenic microorganisms. The effectiveness of chlorination (as well as the health risks, e.g., from disinfection byproducts) has been well established in the scientific literature. The same applies to the use of coagulants in water treatment. There is no looming public health disaster if water fluoridation were to be discontinued.

  23. #23 Peter
    December 2, 2010

    I would consider your equating fluoridation and chlorination of municipal water systems a false dichotomy. Chlorine is used as a disinfectant specifically to avert an acute health risk from pathogenic microorganisms. The effectiveness of chlorination (as well as the health risks, e.g., from disinfection byproducts) has been well established in the scientific literature. The same applies to the use of coagulants in water treatment. There is no looming public health disaster if water fluoridation were to be discontinued. In my opinion, the ethical issue is that a consumer is forced to use a nutrional supplement without regard to the daily intake from other sources. I guess the CDC has already recognized this dilemma, since they now recommend preparing infant formula from non-fluoridated water.

  24. #24 Terry
    December 2, 2010

    I have no dog in this fight either – my township doesn’t flouridate, my kids don’t have cavities and finally the kids in the next county that does flouridate don’t seem any dumber or have extra arms growing out of them.

    But, I come to blog for well reasoned and researched posts on issues that I have no expertise in. And, let’s be honest, Orac is pretty funny :)

    But, I kept reading this post looking for the smoking gun. I think that coby is right and you blew this one. If it was my father, I’d also defend him, but I came to the same conclusions that coby did (with one exception) that most of these arguments were ad-hominem and strawmen.

    But, coby, I think you also missed a point. The monkey graph led the argument because the point was to discredit the overall quality of the study.

    And finally – @noddin – dude, get a life. Just because you imagine orac with a bottle of Disani doesn’t mean he actually has one. And the same goes for the rest of your post – just because you imagine a bunch of stuff doesn’t mean it’s real. You are right about the real world actually meaning something, though: open your mouth and tell me how many fillings you have.

  25. #25 SteveF
    December 2, 2010

    Coby, some of what Orac writes here may be guilt by association. However, familiarity with the world of medical crankery actually reveals that guilt by association can be a pretty powerful indicator of crankdom.

    Indeed, this kind of thing often applies elsewhere. In an area you may be more familiar with, George Monbiot recently showed how global warming deniers are often people with pretty whacky views in other areas of science.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/georgemonbiot/2010/sep/21/climate-sceptics-evidence-gullible

  26. #26 Orac
    December 2, 2010

    I would consider your equating fluoridation and chlorination of municipal water systems a false dichotomy.

    No it’s not, at least not in the context I was using it. Dr. Beck was arguing that fluoridation is a grave offense against medical ethics because it violates informed consent. Whatever the purpose of chlorination, the very same argument can be made against chlorinating drinking water. No one tells each and every user what the potential benefits and risks of chlorination are. Let me repeat his very own words:

    It is unethical to administer a substance or procedure to a person without the consent of that person, consent informed by a qualified professional who must answer questions from that person and who must inform the recipient of the reasons for the administration and of possible side effects. Such consent has never been sought from, much less given by, those whose tap water is fluoridated.

    Exactly the same thing can be said about putting chlorine in drinking water; yet Dr. Beck and friends appear not to be the least bit concerned on an ethical basis.

  27. #27 Dangerous Bacon
    December 2, 2010

    Actually, the “fluoride causes autism” cranks have been at it for quite awhile. Plenty of diatribes on this subject are available online – here’s one example (with a link to (surprise!) naturalnews.com).

    I’m glad Orac has addressed anti-fluoridation rearing its crazy head on scienceblogs. I have to say though, that I’m puzzled by this Oracian statement:

    “in the case of a situation where, when trying to weigh the risks of fluorosis versus the benefit against dental caries, there actually is probably a case to be made that a one-size-fits-all approach to water fluoridation may not even be necessary anymore.”

    Is there a scientific consensus I’ve missed that argues against the need for fluoridation of municipal water supplies? Or that we need to remove fluoride from the water of communities where it naturally occurs at typical treatment levels or in excess of them (remember, this is how fluoridation got its start – the discovery that naturally fluoridated towns and cities had markedly lower levels of dental caries).
    What does “a one size fits all approach” mean?

    I see striking similarities between the antivax and antifluoridation movements. In both situations a proven, safe, highly valuable public health intervention that primarily benefits children is under persistent attack by groups that cherry-pick their “science”, compile lists of health profession-associated/sciency people who agree with them (heavily made up of those in quack professions or who are speaking outside their areas of expertise) and promote conspiracy theory garbage.

  28. #28 nyscof
    December 2, 2010

    It’s clear that Orac just likes attention because he makes no sense whatsoever in his rambling post which I’m sure he hoped would incite much activity on his blog. It takes so little to make some people happy; but he shouldn’t be taken seriously.

    Scientific American: Second Thoughts about Fluoride

    “Some recent studies suggest that over-
    consumption of fluoride can raise the risks of disorders affecting
    teeth, bones, the brain and the thyroid gland,” reports Scientific
    American editors (January 2008). “Scientific attitudes toward
    fluoridation may be starting to shift,” writes author Dan Fagin.

    Fagin, award-wining environmental reporter and Director of New York
    University’s Science, Health and Environmental Reporting Program,
    writes, “There is no universally accepted optimal level for daily
    intake of fluoride.” Some researchers even wonder whether the 1 mg/L
    added into drinking water is too much, reports Fagin.

    After 3 years of scrutinizing hundreds of studies, a National Research
    Council (NRC) committee “concluded that fluoride can subtly alter
    endocrine function, especially in the thyroid – the gland that
    produces hormones regulating growth and metabolism,” reports Fagin.

    Fagin quotes John Doull, professor emeritus of pharmacology and
    toxicology at the University of Kansas Medical Center, who chaired the
    NRC committee, “The thyroid changes do worry me.”

    Fluoride in foods, beverages, medicines and dental products can result
    in fluoride over-consumption, visible in young children as dental
    fluorosis – white spotted, yellow, brown and/or pitted teeth. We can’t
    normally see fluoride’s effects to the rest of the body.

    Reports Fagin, “a series of epidemiological studies in China have
    associated high fluoride exposures with lower IQ.”

    “(E)pidemiological studies and tests on lab animals suggest that high
    fluoride exposure increases the risk of bone fracture, especially in
    vulnerable populations such as the elderly and diabetics,” writes
    Fagin.

    Fagin interviewed Steven Levy, director of the Iowa Fluoride Study
    which tracked about 700 Iowa children for sixteen years. Nine-year-old
    “Iowa children who lived in communities where the water was
    fluoridated were 50 percent more likely to have mild fluorosis… than
    [nine-year-old] children living in nonfluoridated areas of the state,”
    writes Fagin. Levy will study fluoride’s effects on their bones.

    “(G)enetic, environmental and even cultural factors appear to leave
    some people much more susceptible to the effects of fluoride,” writes
    Fagin

    “What the [NRC] committee found is that we’ve gone with the status quo
    regarding fluoride … for too long… and now we need to take a fresh
    look,” Doull says, ” In the scientific community, people tend to think
    that its settled… But when we looked at the studies that have been
    done, we found that many of these questions are unsettled and we have
    much less information than we should, considering how long this
    [fluoridation] has been going on. I think that’s why fluoridation is
    still being challenged so many years after it began, In the face of
    ignorance, controversy is rampant.”

  29. #29 dean
    December 2, 2010

    Is there anything sid won’t lie or otherwise demonstrate his dishonesty and ignorance over? If you seek the modern definition of cretin, look at him.

    Try reading, and discussing, [b] all [/b] of the points of the articles you reference sid – you’ve been taking things out of context so long it’s become very easy to proof check.

  30. #30 Greg Fish
    December 2, 2010

    So I guess the argument is not even actually that Paul Connett himself is a crank, but he has been seen with a crank. Close enough for jazz and blogging!

    Coby, I know the book was co-written by your dad and all, but just because your dad is involved doesn’t mean you get to avoid reading the posts and rationalizing them away. If you actually read Orac’s description of Connett, you’d find that he is in fact a crank, and that he spends his time saying scientifically unproven things and promoting his crank theories on shows ran by other cranks. In fact, Orac specifically says that interviewing with a crank does not make you a crank, then justifies why Connett does fall into that category. Again, reading is good. It’s important.

    You see, this crazy character in “Dr Stranglove” thought commies put fluoride in the water to control our minds, so …um…so what?

    Ok, so no jokes allowed when making a blog post? Please do us a favor and remove the proverbial stick from its implied location. You and your dad are thin-skinned enough to take such terrible offense to a little humor?

    The post being attacked mentions no list of people opposed to fluoridation.

    And again, at least pretending to pay attention would’ve been nice. The post mentions the list because Orac was talking about Connett’s personal crusade, not the book itself.

    Apparently some chiropractors and naturopaths signed this list. Slam dunk! If a single chiropractor anywhere believes it, it must be wrong.

    No, but when you use them as an authority to uphold an idea that’s well known to be based more on an anti-Establishment mentality than actual science, you’re shooting blanks. That was the point.

    Next we are finally presented with something concrete, a review of 77 studies that apparently recommends fluoridation. But this is cherry picked because there have been many such reviews and they do not all agree.

    But most such studies tend to agree that flouridation is at least not making things any worse and is in fact effective at some level. Oh and by the way, you know that there are a lot of reviews about anthropogenic climate change studies that don’t all agree. Does that mean anthropogenic global warming is made up and we can just disregard the concept? Oh wait, your blog says not to do that and look at the direct evidence, not big reviews that may be done by who knows who! Gee, I wonder why that’s ok for climate change science but not flouridation?

    again I am baffled, he says this “it wasn’t too hard to find the study claiming lower IQ, which appears to be this one.” WTF? “There are over 20″

    I can find you more than twenty terrible studies on anything and then distort them by better fit my argument. Number of citations does not equal quality of citations. Again, you should know this.

    The Li et al paper is mentioned again and the same presentation of that U shaped curve showing “optimum” fluoride levels at 1 ppm. But it was pointed out at least four times that Beck was referring to the portion of the paper about *hip* fractures, that graph is not about hip fractures.

    Which is why the graph about hip fractures was then introduced and discussed when Orac was trying to explain the odd overal at 1 ppm. Read. The. Content. Please.

    Yes it may or may not be another health issue to think about, but the ethical issues raised are those around administering medication, which is what fluoride is being treated as, this has nothing to do with chlorine for disinfection or tang powder for flavour.

    But you’re consuming that chlorine. So when someone advertises a health benefit to adding something into the water, it’s a valid thing to discuss and when someone brings up that there’s more stuff being added into the water than just flouride, it’s a red herring? Chloride is certainly being used for your health here.

    Overall, I am a bit saddened by this post, I had hoped to read reason and supporting evidence.

    Funny. That’s what I was expecting form your blog too. Instead I got “my dad is so smart, he wrote a book about why flouride is really, really bad and is a giant conspiracy for companies to dump their toxic waste into our water, then make us drink it and think it’s good.”

    If anti-fluoridation is such an easy debunk, why all the flawed reasoning and logical fallacies? That is not a rhetorical question.

    Wow. Just wow. This is sad. So you seem to be unable to follow the post, call logical fallacies on arguments you haven’t read, then say that your favorite woo is hard to debunk, therefore it must be sound. Oh, here, I got one for you. If global warming is so easy to prove, why are there so many skeptics, and why all the passionate ads from environmentalist groups about AGW?

    But it does not mean I am impervious to sound counter arguments. So let’s hear one.

    Says the guy who ignored dozens and dozens of them and cherry-picked or dismissed his way out of every link he was given on the topic. You know, just like Harum Yahuna, aka Adnan Oktar, is willing to part with trillions of dollars if he’s shown one piece of evidence for evolution…

  31. #31 Orac
    December 2, 2010

    Oh, here, I got one for you. If global warming is so easy to prove, why are there so many skeptics, and why all the passionate ads from environmentalist groups about AGW?

    Darn. I wish I had thought of that one…

  32. #32 Dunc
    December 2, 2010

    Well, I don’t really have a dog in this fight either, but anyway…

    I suppose you could argue that the consent argument applies to various other things, and you’d technically be correct. But what so often seems to get lost in these debates is the nuance of the nature and scale of the benefits delivered. One could argue that the absolutely massive benefit delivered by chlorination (and not achievable by any other means) is sufficient to justify the derogation of certain ethical principles, but that the benefits of fluoridation are not sufficiently great to justify the same, given that the same benefits can be derived by other means.

    Questions of ethics are rarely as simple as we might like.

  33. #33 Typical
    December 2, 2010

    Once again Orac proving himself not to be a truth-teller interested in “science”, but instead a mouthpiece for the idiots in charge of dumping toxic chemicals into our water supplies. Add that to his defense of injecting newborns with mercury and well… It shows what a tool Orac continues to be….

  34. #34 Lawrence
    December 2, 2010

    LOL – typical is being “typical.”

  35. #35 mikerattlesnake
    December 2, 2010

    @2

    Yeah! And lets stop all those trees (and the oft-overlooked algae) from oxidizing our air! Oxygen is a potentially toxic chemical! Why is the government allowing this crap in the air?!? All you suckers and shills can keep on breathing, but I’m gonna hold my breath until you all look like fools!

  36. #36 Greg Fish
    December 2, 2010

    Nyscof,

    The thing about cut and paste arguments is that they’re probably not your best bet to counter an argument. If you knew the subject matter yourself, you could’ve written something other than a blithe dismissal followed by a Ctrl+V.

    “Some recent studies suggest that over-consumption of fluoride can raise the risks of disorders affecting teeth, bones, the brain and the thyroid gland,” reports Scientific
    American…”

    Which is the same kind of science journalism that reports that a study that found a key acid or protein in tomatoes can help treat cancer means that you just need to eat lots of tomatoes to avoid cancer, and so on and so forth. Reports of studies are not the same thing as actual studies we can review. You have no idea how much dreck from arXiv I see being praised in the media as The Next General Relativity to End All Relativities.

    “After 3 years of scrutinizing hundreds of studies, a National Research Council (NRC) committee ‘concluded that fluoride can subtly alter endocrine function, especially in the thyroid – the gland that produces hormones regulating growth and metabolism,’ reports Fagin.”

    Oh God! Subtle changes in endocrine function! Get a worried toxicologist in here stat! Everybody, start losing your crap! Mysterious, unexplained subtle changes on which we’re given no elaboration?! Call the Army! Call the Navy! Get the Air Force! Declare war on flouride lest we all experience unknown subtle changes that “worry” a toxicologist randomly chosen to comment for the story!

    “Fluoride in foods, beverages, medicines and dental products can result in fluoride over-consumption, visible in young children as dental fluorosis…”

    Ok, that one’s actually a valid and reasonable point. We may be getting a little too much flouride exposure with so much flouridated toothpaste being used nowadays. But here’s the thing. Fluorosis isn’t that dangerous or that terribly bad. We may want to lower flouride concentrations to reflect the changes in our oral hygene regimens. But does this prove that flouride is dangerous and must be purged from our water? Absolutely no.

    “Reports Fagin, ‘a series of epidemiological studies in China have associated high fluoride exposures with lower IQ.'”

    Again, where are the studies? Also, you know, there’s a whole lot of industrial pollution in China and their flouride exposure levels could be well beyond what we mandate as safe here. Without a concrete study, this quote is a meaningless excercise in fear-mongering.

    “Iowa children who lived in communities where the water was fluoridated were 50 percent more likely to have mild fluorosis… than [nine-year-old] children living in nonfluoridated areas of the state,”

    Mild fluorosis that can be easily treatd in kids who get too much flouride from water and toothpaste? To the fainting couches and panic rooms everybody! The flouride menace must be stopped before it’s too late!

    “I think that’s why fluoridation is still being challenged so many years after it began, In the face of
    ignorance, controversy is rampant.”

    It absolutely is. Hence the ominous quote in an overblown and porrly written newsbit, copied and pasted with no thought or critical analysis at all…

  37. #37 Typical
    December 2, 2010

    LOL! @ #33 and #34…

    Thanks for proving the point. This blog is a hilarious joke. The minute someone comes out and has a different point of view (ie Coby, James Beck, Paul Connett, etc), it is met with instant criticism despite the fact that admittedly many of the “skeptics” haven’t read the book, haven’t researched the topic fully, etc. Sad state of affairs. There is no “science” here… What a misrepresentation of term.

  38. #38 Greg Fish
    December 2, 2010

    @Orac. #30

    Darn. I wish I had thought of that one…

    Well, feel free to use it at no charge for the first five usages. Think of it as a gift from a fellow skeptic. =P

  39. #39 madcapmachinations
    December 2, 2010

    Figured I throw this fact out there but a lot of fluoridation programs entail removing flourine from the water supply. Its a naturally occuring mineral.

  40. #40 Old Rockin' Dave
    December 2, 2010

    I am a former physician assistant and for 10 years I did pre-anesthesia assessments. Because patients receiving general anesthesia are going to be intubated, and those planned for sedation may require intubation, it was part of my job to assess every patient’s dentition. I know this is not scientific proof, but after a short time I could see a clear divide in the condition of the teeth of patients born in the US before or after about 1960, when fluoridation began to become widespread. I know the plural of anecdote is not data, but I saw this day after day, a dozen or more patients daily, for a full decade.

  41. #41 mikerattlesnake
    December 2, 2010

    @36

    I wasn’t responding to you but to the person at post #2 (hence the “@2″ conveniently included at the top of the post), and my post was a concise rebuttal of his “IF YOU LIKE FLOURINE SO MUCH WHY DON’T YOU EAT ALL OF IT” argument. It says nothing of the totality of research on the subject, just the stupidity of that particular argument.

    As for your “if you don’t read (book x) you can’t comment on (issue y)” argument, that’s a whole ‘nother kettle of stupid, but you don’t seem particularly worth much of a rebuttal. Just another whiney doofus.

  42. #42 f
    December 2, 2010

    Probably the saddest part is that Coby actually cited (in the comments) a website called Fluoridealert that actually has (among others) articles posted by known pseudoscience peddling fraudster Joseph Mercola. Basically, Coby’s standards of evidence are appallingly low.

  43. #43 Lawrence
    December 2, 2010

    So typical – what part of your post involved a scientific argument again?

  44. #44 Gizmo
    December 2, 2010

    Orac, I really like your blog, but I sense that you’re not too wild about those of us that lean right of center (as exhibited in this post). I’ve also seen attempts here to pin anti-vaccine lunacy as some right-wing manifestation. Again, anti-fluoridation lunacy is also a bi-partisan endeavor. In fact most of the anti-fluoridation folks that I have personally encountered are from the left-of-center Mothering.com “crunchy” mother crowd who would prefer to live in a yurt off the grid and breastfeed their kids until they’re 8 or 9.. and then switch them to raw milk. I don’t think there are a lot of Freepers in that group.

  45. #45 Lise
    December 2, 2010

    “… He’s been showing up around Autism One. Yes, that’s right. Paul Connett appears to be associating with anti-vaccine cranks…”

    And speaking of anti-vaccine cranks, remember how a lot of the opposition to them is anti-polio, anti-measles, etc. and a small faction of the opposition to them is pro-autism (this faction I’d expect to turn antivaxer themselves if someone ever comes up with a vaccine for autism)? The other day I saw a member of that opposition promoting woo too:

    http://cheetahchottah.blogspot.com/2010/11/loudmouthed-youtuber.html

    “…It is a New Jersey mother with at least one severely autistic adult son. Now, I have no doubt that she is in tremendous need of help, and that could be why she acts the way she does…

    “…[that same New Jersey mother] mentioned that her son still carried a stuffed bear and believed in Santa Claus, implying that it was a tragedy. Generally these are seen as child phases, and when people do not outgrow them, they are stigmatized. However, it is irrelevant to functional ability, and as a mother, she needs to be less judgmental. She could be fighting for the acceptance of harmless behaviors like these…”

    So there you have it: how-dare-you-think-belief-in-antivaxers-reduces-one’s-credibility woo vs. how-dare-you-think-belief-in-Santa-Clause-reduces-one’s-credibility woo. o_O

  46. #46 Todd W.
    December 2, 2010

    @Gizmo

    Orac has been pretty clear in the past that crankery (at least, anti-vaccine crankery) knows know political boundaries. He has stated that it is about as common on the left as on the right, whether it’s left-leaning crunchy granola types or right-leaning anti-government sorts. I didn’t see anything in his post pointing fingers at one side or the other here.

  47. #47 Daniel J. Andrews
    December 2, 2010

    Well argued and rebutted, Greg Fish. I’ll have to start following your blog.

  48. #48 davep
    December 2, 2010

    Dunc @ 31 “I suppose you could argue that the consent argument applies to various other things, and you’d technically be correct. But what so often seems to get lost in these debates is the nuance of the nature and scale of the benefits delivered. One could argue that the absolutely massive benefit delivered by chlorination (and not achievable by any other means) is sufficient to justify the derogation of certain ethical principles, but that the benefits of fluoridation are not sufficiently great to justify the same, given that the same benefits can be derived by other means.

    Questions of ethics are rarely as simple as we might like.”

    While one could make this argument, Dr. Beck is not doing so.

    He is saying that it’s unethical regardless of the benefit.

    That means being concerned about fluoride and not concerned (it seems) about chlorine is logically inconsistent. It’s this inconsistency that Orac was commenting on.

  49. #49 Gizmo
    December 2, 2010

    @Todd W.
    I see Orac only commenting that the anti-flouridation lunacy will find fertile soil with “right-wingers” and those with anti-government leanings in this post as well as its roots in Bircher-types.

    My other thoughts were more towards Orac’s post-election comment about his fear of “people like this” that will now be running the House of Representatives. Now perhaps I’m taking him out of context and Orac was just making a personal comment outside of the normal subject area of his blog, but I interpreted the comment as him lamenting the new page being turned in the presumed Congressional political wars surrounding science.

  50. #50 Chris
    December 2, 2010

    Noddin, your brilliance and rhetoric is still underwhelming.

  51. #51 nejishiki
    December 2, 2010

    My first though wasn’t Dr. Strangelove, but this:

    “And I say unto you, brothers and sisters of the Anti- Fluoride movement, we have this day struck such a blow for purity as will never call a retreat…. Out, I say, with the filthy foreign fluorides! We will sweep this fair land sweet and clean as a young boy’s tensed Hank. …I will now lead you in our theme song The Old Oaken Bucket.”

    A well head is lighted by fluorescent lights that play over it in hideous juke-box colors. The Anti-Fluorides file past the well singing as each dips up a drink from the oaken bucket….
    “The old oaken bucket, the gold oaken bucket

    The glublthulunnubbeth…”

    A. J. had tampered with the water, inserting a South American vine that turns the gums to mush.

    — W. S. Burroughs, Naked Lunch

  52. #52 Chris
    December 2, 2010

    So do the fluoride cranks check their well water for fluoride? Or know that several municipalities in the western USA actually remove the naturally occurring fluoride in the public water supply, or know how its effect was discovered in Colorado?

  53. #53 Mu
    December 2, 2010

    Gizmo, if you consider Orac left leaning, than of course being interviewed for prisonplanet is not a problem, that must be a middle of the road website for you.

  54. #54 Mu
    December 2, 2010

    I looked over at the comment thread on AFTIC, Cody got Jen’s endorsement. Game, set and match.

  55. #55 Dave
    December 2, 2010

    Try drinking even an ounce of fluoride, then tell me you feel OK. No; you won’t.

    On ounce? An OUNCE?!?

    If you drink the reccomended 8 glasses of water a day, it will take you almost 43 years to consume an oz of flouride.

  56. #56 Denice Walter
    December 2, 2010

    @ Dave : so I guess that means that some of us ( over age 43) *have* actually ingested an ounce of fluoride ( OMFG!!!!!) no wonder I consistently vote democratic!

  57. #57 MikeMa
    December 2, 2010

    I’m afraid I might have to buy the idea that lowered IQ is linked to flouride. There seem to be a huge number of people (in the US at least) unable to grasp even the simplest of arguments or or enjoy the least level of self-awareness. They are easily swayed by lies and often support causes not in their own self interest. I must now assume that flouride causes teabaggers.

  58. #58 jre
    December 2, 2010

    PBF!

  59. #59 Anti Flo
    December 2, 2010

    So you think it’s alright to force people to drink toxic industrial waste then?

  60. #60 viner
    December 2, 2010

    So which part of consuming toxic waste appeals to people? What is it about these “pro-fluoride” people that drives them out of the woodwork to attack any criticism? They don’t even want to talk about it. Are they just concerned citizens that don’t like change? Are they jingoistic flag wavers defending the official story, as it has been sold/ingrained for so long? Will admitting they were lied to be so hard, so embarrassing? As they are obviously of parenting age or older – they have been telling children of the apparent safety of the water – all the while praying they don’t swallow the fluoride toothpaste – as it will kill them. Are they dentists or elected official? They too have been selling us on the idea of fluoridation for so long, all the while not informed of its effects on our bodies. Imagine the backlash from patients & citizens. Its like when doctors were selling cigarettes. Today we see though that smoke. What kind of person can see the absolutely no problem with adding toxic waste to drinking water?
    (yes – toxic waste, as testified before Congress: http://www.fluoridealert.org/testimony.htm )
    No need for a peer-reviewed double blind study to see the truth here.
    Oh sure, there is a percentage of “fluoride” in it – (sodium fluoride or fluorosilicic acid) that is 85 times more toxic than the naturally occurring calcium fluoride found in some well water. Both of them contain fluoride, but they are totally different compounds. What loving parent would want deprive our children of this or cigarette smoke for that matter?
    -v

  61. #61 Jim
    December 2, 2010

    viner, what offends me even more is the promotion – no, not just promotion, but subsidy – of another hazardous waste: acetic acid. When will we learn that Florida’s peddlers of death and their powerful pro-orange lobby are a threat to us all? Drink an ounce of acetic acid and tell me how you feel.

  62. #62 Raging Bee
    December 2, 2010

    Just two quick points:

    First, the anti-flouridation hysteria dates back to the McCarthy era, when flouridation was denounced in the screechiest possible tones as a commie plot and the first steps toward “socialized medicine.” It’s been a radical-right shrieking-point ever since then, and the reasons for the hysteria are psychiatric, not based on any actual science.

    And second, if flouride is either ineffective or dangerous in our drinking water, wouldn’t it also be ineffective or dangerous in toothpaste? And if putting it in water violates informed consent, what about putting it in nearly every brand of toothpaste available in stores?

    “Reports Fagin, ‘a series of epidemiological studies in China have associated high fluoride exposures with lower IQ.'”

    China is one of the most polluted countries on Earth. Are they sure it’s the flouride causing the low IQs, or something else they’re breathing or drinking every damn day? And with all the flouridation going on in the US since the 1950s, why did they have to go to China to find low IQs?

  63. #63 Beaker
    December 2, 2010

    “So which part of consuming toxic waste appeals to people?”
    That something is the rest product of another production process, does not mean it is toxic. Furthermore, as has already been pointed out, the dose makes the poison and there is very little to no evidence that fluoride is poisonous at the levels in drinking water.

    “Will admitting they were lied to be so hard, so embarrassing? As they are obviously of parenting age or older – they have been telling children of the apparent safety of the water – all the while praying they don’t swallow the fluoride toothpaste – as it will kill them.”
    No it won’t.

    So far for the parts of Viner’s scare mongering that deserves some kind of an answer.

  64. #64 joi
    December 2, 2010

    “That something is the rest product of another production process, does not mean it is toxic.”

    I think you’re confusing the anti-fluoride crowd with sane, critically thinking people. After all, a lot of them are in the same group of people who think things like vaccines cause autism, MSG is ‘poisonous’ (despite the fact that it dissociates into plain old sodium and glutamate ions in water or saliva), and that anything synthetic is pure evil (regardless of whether or not it is chemically identical to a natural source).

  65. #65 Marilyn Mann
    December 2, 2010

    What a coincidence. Just yesterday I came across this blog, which contains several anti-fluoridation posts.

    http://healthjournalclub.blogspot.com/2010/01/book-review-fluoride-deception-by.html

  66. #66 dt
    December 2, 2010

    “And with all the flouridation going on in the US since the 1950s, why did they have to go to China to find low IQs?”

    I thought the same thing myself.
    My years of web browsing has convinced me that the US is the home of dumb. Plently of research material in some parts, I’d have thought.

  67. #67 Triskelethecat Midwife of Death
    December 2, 2010

    I snickered at Viner, Anti Flo, and others. I bet they drink absolutely pure well water (which probably has natural fluoride in it) or, even better, go spend lots of money on bottled water.

    And yeah, I remember hearing the stories about how the benefit of fluoride in the water was found: those who lived in areas with natural fluoride in the water had far fewer cavities than their neighbors.

    I know there must be others here who are old enough to remember the days they came to the schools and painted fluoride on your teeth. My parents always refused it because our water was fluoridated and they didn’t see any reason to spend the money for this. Kids on the other side of town, where water wasn’t fluoridated, had it done and would complain all day at how foul the stuff tasted.

  68. #68 Minnesota
    December 2, 2010

    @cody – I would think you would know your good buddy Orac much better by now.

    Orac’s 30 minutes of research on fluoride is going to trump anything a decade or more of research by your father or Connett has done. He IS that smart you know, pick a topic – Orac knows all.

    Your father or Connett should put up a challenge to Orac to debate and discuss. That would pull the wizard out from behind his curtain, something we all know he would never do.

  69. #69 Dangerous Bacon
    December 2, 2010

    “So you think it’s alright to force people to drink toxic industrial waste then?”
    “So which part of consuming toxic waste appeals to people?”

    Even worse, that “toxic waste” is dissolved in…TOXIC WASTE! WATER!!!!!$! Yes, WATER itself is toxic!!*! Now some of you “smarty-pants” will argue that it’s the dose that’s important, but we know better. A POISON is a POISON!!^*!#!

    Hope none of you are drinking that stuff. If you drink the recommended* 8 glasses of water per day, by the time you’re 70 you’ll have easily drunk a tanker truck full of the stuff. A chilling thought!!!

    *a recommendation undoubtedly formulated by Big Water. Think about it. Why are the “medical gurus” suddenly so high on water? Hmmm?

  70. #70 Vicki, Chief Assistant to the Assistant Chief
    December 2, 2010

    So which part of consuming toxic waste appeals to people?

    I use it occasionally as a muscle relaxant (when the NSAIDs aren’t helping). The effects on the brain (including lowered inhibition) also seem popular, but you might do better asking someone who doesn’t sometimes go months between drinks.

  71. #71 fenton fomite
    December 2, 2010

    @Minnesota

    You seem to think you’ve scored points chiding this blog’s author for his anonymity. You’re very wrong. The name of the man behind the blinking box of lights is a very badly kept secret. With your Google University education (that being a B.S. degree) it should be a snap for you to discover.

  72. #72 jre
    December 2, 2010

    I use killfile for those few whose comments consistently subtract value from a thread. Noddin is one such, yet the familiar [kill] option does not appear under that comment. Does anyone here know why not?

  73. #73 Joseph
    December 2, 2010

    (yes – toxic waste, as testified before Congress: http://www.fluoridealert.org/testimony.htm )

    I briefly scanned that document and didn’t find the reference. Can you cite the specific quote?

    Just the other day I found an EPA document that said Selenium is considered toxic in solid wastes, if it exceeds 1 ppm. (I was arguing the “200 times more toxic than toxic waste” gambit with anti-vaxers.) Fluoride in water occurs at just about 1 ppm, so I find it highly doubtful that the standard for fluoride toxicity would be the same as that of a heavy metal.

  74. #74 Minnesota
    December 2, 2010

    @fenton fomite – Thanks for the tip, yes I know all about Orac and Barrett. Ghostbusters – err, I mean Quackbusters. Very scientific and unbiased indeed, when I want information on fluoride I think of Orac… yeah that’s the ticket – looks like he also received his education on fluoride at Google U – unless I missed something in his experience about fluoride research.

    Judging from the timing of his post, and self admission to having little time for this – maybe he did spend an hour on the topic. So who to trust, PhD with years researching referencing pages of studies or… ORAC yes of course!

  75. #75 Azkyroth
    December 2, 2010

    It makes me suspect a small but significant percentage of the population (those who are conspiracy mongers, natch) takes daily lead supplements.

    They should try *activated* lead supplements. It’ll cure what’s wrong with them!

  76. #76 Rose
    December 2, 2010

    Science is science. Isn’t that the point of this blog? So what if you are left-wing or right, it takes all sorts to be a crank! I know as many Tea Party cranks as I know Liberal Earth-Muncher cranks (well, I know slightly more LEM cranks due to living in a Democratic state next to the biggest wad of granola in the NE (VERMONT!)). They all pretty much talk the same line of quackery when you get right down to it.

  77. #77 Rose
    December 2, 2010

    Science is science. Isn’t that the point of this blog? — To defend science from pseudoscience. So what if you are left-wing or right, it takes all sorts to be a crank! I know as many Tea Party cranks as I know Liberal Earth-Muncher cranks (well, I know slightly more LEM cranks due to living in a Democratic state next to the biggest wad of granola in the NE (VERMONT!)). They all pretty much talk the same line of quackery when you get right down to it.

  78. #78 Travis
    December 2, 2010

    Rose, that is true but who is saying otherwise?
    Orac has made the same point a number of times, if my memory is correct. In fact I believe he did so recently in one his posts. Perhaps someone else knows where exactly that was done. I have to get back to work and do not have time to track it down.

  79. #79 Traveler
    December 2, 2010

    Perhaps we could have a contest: Which cranks are most persistent, tobacco/smoking denialists, AGW denialists, anti-vaccine loons, or anti-fluoridation activists?

    What? No love for the free energy cranks?

  80. #80 viner
    December 2, 2010

    as testified before congress:

    2) We ask that you order that the two waste products http://www.fluoridealert.org/phosphate/overview.htm of the fertilizer industry that are now used in 90% of fluoridation programs, for which EPA states they are not able to identify any chronic studies, be used in any future toxicity studies, rather than a substitute chemical. Further, since federal agencies are actively advocating that each man woman and child drink, eat and bathe in these chemicals, silicofluorides should be placed at the head of the list for establishing a MCL that complies with the Safe Drinking Water Act. This means that the MCL be protective of the most sensitive of our population, including infants, with an appropriate margin of safety for ingestion over an entire lifetime.

  81. #81 JP
    December 2, 2010

    There definitely people against the chlorination of water:
    http://www.anh-europe.org/campaigns/clean-drinking-water/chlorine

    It seems to be more of a European phenomenon. Anecdotally, I know several people from Holland who, on a recent visit to North America, refused to even have ice cubes in their soft drinks because of the chlorine in our tap water.

  82. #82 WScott
    December 2, 2010

    @Bee #62:

    And if putting it in water violates informed consent, what about putting it in nearly every brand of toothpaste available in stores?

    To be fair, toothpaste tubes are clearly labeled – indeed marketed – as containing fluoride; tap water is not. I’m not defending the anti-fluoridization folks, and I agree with the rest of your post. But this one argument doesn’t really hold water. (Sorry for the pun.)

  83. #83 Militant Agnostic
    December 2, 2010

    as testified before congress:

    As a lame argument from authority this has to rank right up there with invoking the British royal family (especially the flap eared twit) in support of homeopathy or some other woo.

  84. #84 Pareidolius
    December 2, 2010

    As I posted over at Ill-Considered:

    I’m no scientist, so all the meta-whatevers and acronyms being bandied about by scientifically educated folk are of no use to me. Where I am an expert is magical-thinking. As a non-scientist and former magical-thinker, I was often swayed by the writings of “maverick” scientists, including their Lord God King, Peter Duesberg (to my eternal shame). I would eagerly lap up their twisted science, their interpretations of studies and their elaborate, sciency-sounding theories (after all, they were scientists). There was, however, one thing that always made me stick my fingers in my ears, close my eyes tightly and yell “La, La, La, La”, and that was troubling issue of conspiracy. It was the red flag I tried mightily to ignore.

    Well I may have had trouble ignoring it then, but I don’t now. How can all the water agencies, all the dental and medical sciences and governments around the world be “wrong” on what has been settled science for sixty years? How can this conspiracy be maintained in the age of Wikileaks? How could you not be able to follow the money? And what’s in it for the purveyors of this nefarious plot to, what . . . break old ladies hips?

    Maybe fluoride really is useless in drinking water. Maybe we get enough from toothpaste. Maybe Lord Draconis is putting it in Teh Kemtraylz™ to make us into a vast army of slave monkeys for the Glaxxon Reptilian Corpus . . . or not.

    I really don’t know the science well enough to comment intelligently on it, but as someone working on improving my critical thinking skills, the whole “everybody in the world is wrong except me” thing gives me pause.

  85. #85 trrll
    December 2, 2010

    One of the things that distinguishes cranks is their boundless faith in coincidence.

    HIV/AIDS cranks believe that HIV does not cause AIDS, and that anti-HIV drugs do. Why then has the incidence of classic AIDS diminished since the introduction of anti-HIV drugs? It happened for other reasons, coincidentally at the same time.

    Vaccine cranks believe that vaccines are ineffective in preventing disease. Why have the incidence of polio, measles, whooping cough, and numerous other dangerous diseases diminished to zero or nearly zero everywhere that widespread vaccination has been instituted? Coincidence–they were just about to go down at that time of their own accord.

    Global warming cranks believe that CO2 has no effect on climate. Why have temperatures climbed as human CO2 releases and atmospheric CO2 have increased? Coincidence–it is due to some form of “natural variability” from an unknown mechanism which just happened to occur at the same time.

    DDT cranks believe that DDT did not impair the reproduction of raptors. Why did populations of many endangered raptors rebound after wholesale agricultural use of DDT was stopped? Coincidence–they were going to rebound anyway for some other reason.

    And fluoride cranks don’t believe that fluoride reduces dental caries. Why has the incidence of dental caries decreased dramatically since fluoride was introduced? Coincidence–it was going to happen anyway.

  86. #86 jre
    December 2, 2010

    What? No love for the free energy cranks?

    Fairness requires that we try to round out Orac’s list.

    At a minimum, this must include:

    1) Tobacky / 2nd-hand smoke denialists
    2) Climate septics
    3) Anti-vaxers
    4) Anti-fluor / Precious bodily fluids defenders
    5) Free energy / perpetual motion advocates
    6) 9/11 troofers
    7) Carson=Hitler DDT boosters
    8) Moon landing revisionists
    9) HIV deniers

    Holocaust denial is off the map; sorry.
    There are some things even a crank won’t go near.

  87. #87 j
    December 2, 2010

    I’m think that “I don’t have a dog in this fight” is overused as far as clichéd phrases go.

  88. #88 Todd W.
    December 2, 2010

    @j

    I’m think that “I don’t have a dog in this fight” is overused as far as clichéd phrases go.

    Agreed. I hereby propose a new list of clichés:

    1) I don’t have a cat in this fight.
    2) I don’t have a cock in this fight. (keep your minds outta the gutters, people)
    3) I don’t have a horse in this race.

    Add your own.

  89. #89 Just Sayin'
    December 2, 2010

    Add your own.

    I don’t have any fluoride in this water.

  90. #90 Tobinius
    December 2, 2010

    viner:

    What kind of person can see the absolutely no problem with adding toxic waste to drinking water?(yes – toxic waste, as testified before Congress: http://www.fluoridealert.org/testimony.htm)

    Joseph:

    briefly scanned that document and didn’t find the reference. Can you cite the specific quote?

    viner:

    We ask that you order that the two waste products http://www.fluoridealert.org/phosphate/overview.htm of the fertilizer industry that are now used in 90% of fluoridation programs, for which EPA states they are not able to identify any chronic studies, be used in any future toxicity studies, rather than a substitute chemical.

    No where does it say toxic waste. It says waste products need to be tested to see if they are toxic, thus the “future toxicity studies,” because they couldn’t “identify any chronic studies.” You’re not helping your cause, but I don’t think that will surprise anyone.

  91. #91 viner
    December 2, 2010

    “no it wont”???? kill your kid – right
    http://www.fluoridealert.org/toothpaste.html
    Half a tube can kill a 2 year old. I hope your kids do not use the candy flavors. But keep telling them it is safe.
    -v

  92. #92 T. Bruce McNeely
    December 2, 2010

    Yes, this cpncerns my Dad, which is why, unfamiliar as I am to this issue, I am starting from the assumption that the book is sincere and careful.

    This sentence baffles me, for several reasons. Your father is obviously deeply involved in a very controversial area, and you are that unfamiliar with the issue? What do you guys talk about at Thanksgiving?

    Secondly, if you are that unfamiliar, why didn’t you run it past someone with a little more familiarity, like a faculty member at a dental school? That’s kind of the usual procedure when writing about something I don’t know a whole lot about.

  93. #93 Sid Offit
    December 2, 2010

    @Coby

    Apparently some chiropractors and naturopaths signed this list. Slam dunk! If a single chiropractor anywhere believes it, it must be wrong

    Reminds me of Tom Friedman’s great line, “Some things are true even if George Bush believes them

  94. #94 Todd W.
    December 2, 2010

    @viner

    Swallowing the amount of toothpaste used for brushing one’s teeth will not kill the child. The link you provided suggests that swallowing about half the tube in one go would be bad. Beaker was likely referring to the former, while you, apparently are conflating the two.

  95. #95 Kevin
    December 2, 2010

    “Half a tube can kill a 2 year old. I hope your kids do not use the candy flavors. But keep telling them it is safe.”

    How is this different from children’s tylenol?

  96. #96 Scottynuke
    December 2, 2010

    Thank goodness the Mono Lake bacteria haven’t learned to use fluorine, else the conspriacy would make sense…

    Sort of.

  97. #97 Todd W.
    December 2, 2010

    @Kevin

    viner is yet another example of someone who does not understand the concept of “the dose makes the poison”.

  98. #98 Pareidolius
    December 2, 2010

    MESSAGE BEGINS—————–

    Shills and Minions,

    Two troublesome humans have stumbled across our plans for Operation: Brittle Monkey Servant. As our loyal minions, you are well aware that we have, for some sixty Earth years, been sneaking flouride into the human water supply to make their bones snap and their minds pliable.

    This has been accomplished through our tireless network of Quislings who know their place, and welcome their reptilian overlords with open arms.

    These delightfully, unscrupulously traitorous scientists, dentists, doctors and municipal water treatment plant workers have been secretly doing our nefarious bidding and have been rewarded with unimaginable riches.

    But now our plan is in jeopardy, and we rely on you to get to these pesky whistleblowers and silence them with mockery and snark until we can come up with a more “permanent” solution.

    As you know, the Hive Queen of the Gliesen Insectoid Dominion has had her drones working ceaselessly to fill the monkeys with high-fructose corn syrup to make them fat and somnolent. Though this does make humans more delicious, this plan to make them bloated and soft will allow the Dominion to take the planet before our plans to make them servile and brittle can come to fruition. We reptilians have certainly never shied away from a fight, but I’d bet my hind battleclaw that a war between us and the Insectoids would render this pretty little planet uninhabitable and then nobody wins.

    Let’s get this done shills and minions! New Porsche Panamera Turbos for the shills that capture Beck and Corbett first. And while you’re at it, pick up this “Viner” too, can’t be too careful now can we? We shall see how they like playtime with the hatchlings . . .

    ——————–MESSAGE ENDS

    Lord Draconis Zeneca,
    VCiH7L
PharmaCOM Orbital HQ
0010101101001

  99. #99 Travis
    December 2, 2010

    Drinking large amounts of water can result in hyperhydration and can kill a 2 year old. Obviously water should not be given to children.

  100. #100 Lynxreign
    December 2, 2010

    Traveler @78

    What? No love for the free energy cranks?

    Cranks! Just because some people think energy is fundemental enough to life in modern society that government should provide it free of charge doesn’t make them cranks!

    Oh, wait, you mean people who think you can create energy from nothing…

    Carry on.

  101. #101 Todd W.
    December 2, 2010

    @Lord Draconis

    I have my cage with some OSR#1 as bait.

  102. #102 Philip
    December 2, 2010

    Interesting write-up at the Health Journal Club on the CDC’s latest estimate of dental fluorosis prevalence

    http://healthjournalclub.blogspot.com/2010/12/cdc-update-on-dental-fluorosis.html

    Over 40% of 12-15 year olds now have signs of dental fluorosis, at least according to the CDC.

  103. #103 Composer99
    December 2, 2010

    viner,

    There are many commonplace products which can kill a 2-year-old if used improperly, but which are generally considered to be safe in other contexts.

    On what basis do you justify treating toothpaste differently?

  104. #104 Kat
    December 2, 2010

    It doesn’t surprise me that the fluoridation loonies are still out there – I used to take tours of Melbourne’s water treatment plants, and would encounter these things from time to time. It is disappointing though.

    My dad grew up before fluoridated water. No teeth left. My sister and I have consumed nothing but fluoridated water – not a cavity between us. Correlation does not equal causation, except of course when the scientific evidence shows that it is so (as it does here). We are not retarded, deformed, or in any way disbenefited from the water we have consumed.

    The major ‘arguments’ confuse ppm with massive doses, misunderstand the risk of fluorosis, or throw out emotive statements about ‘toxic by-products’. ‘Toxic’ still just relates to dosage, which in this case has been reliably shown to be safe. ‘By-products’ are a matter of opinion – cream is a by-product of milk, but you will never take that away from me!

    BTW, I’m a long-time lurker – love this blog.

  105. #105 Chris
    December 2, 2010

    Philip, why link to the blog posting instead of the actual CDC page? Not quite as dire, is it? Especially with this kind of paragraph:

    In the analyses of changes in prevalence between both national surveys, moderate and severe dental fluorosis were aggregated into one category because all estimates of severe fluorosis were statistically unreliable after stratification (standard error of the percentage was greater than 30% the value of the percentage).

  106. #106 Sid Offit
    December 2, 2010

    Orac

    Also note that this is an ecological study, and ecological studies are well known in epidemiology for producing false positives

    I’ll take note of that when reviewing the original ECOLOGICAl “studies” upon which fluoridation was based

  107. #107 Dangerous Bacon
    December 2, 2010

    Coby: “Yes, this c(o)ncerns my Dad, which is why, unfamiliar as I am to this issue, I am starting from the assumption that the book is sincere and careful.”

    The parallels with Mel Gibson and his conspiracy-bigot father Hutton are depressing.

  108. #108 Sean O'Doherty
    December 2, 2010

    I don’t have a Cthulhu in this Armageddon.

  109. #109 Composer99
    December 2, 2010

    Sid,

    Your statement in #106 presupposes that your reviews of any scientific study, ecological or otherwise, are to be taken seriously, when analysis of your claims on this topic or on vaccines strongly suggest that ridicule is more appropriate.

  110. #110 Sean O'Doherty
    December 2, 2010

    Sid, please lay off the meth. The other tweakers can’t find any…

  111. #111 Sid Offit
    December 2, 2010

    @Fishy

    Mild fluorosis that can be easily treatd in kids who get too much flouride from water and toothpaste?

    What might those be?

  112. #112 Dave
    December 2, 2010

    Half a tube can kill a 2 year old. I hope your kids do not use the candy flavors. But keep telling them it is safe.

    Did you know bread is made from a substance called dough? It has been shown that a mere one pound of dough can be used to suffocate a mouse. The average American eats more bread than that in one month!

    And newborn babys can choke on bread!

    I really hope you dont have any of this toxic industrially produced product in your house.

  113. #113 Sid Offit
    December 2, 2010

    @Ragin’ Bee

    And second, if flouride is either ineffective or dangerous in our drinking water, wouldn’t it also be ineffective or dangerous in toothpaste?

    Toothpaste efficacy is a different issue, but as to your question, toothpaste is a topical application as opposed to an ingested one. Topical is now believed to be the only protective route

  114. #114 Sid Offit
    December 2, 2010

    @Beaker

    Furthermore, as has already been pointed out, the dose makes the poison and there is very little to no evidence that fluoride is poisonous at the levels in drinking water.

    ———–

    In the context of biology, poisons are substances that can cause disturbances to organisms, usually by chemical reaction or other activity on the molecular scale, when a sufficient quantity is absorbed by an organism. …
    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poison

    40% kids with some form of fluorosis

    Fluoroiss = disturbace during tooth formation

    Disturbance = poisoning

    Fluoride = poison

  115. #115 Chris
    December 2, 2010

    Sid: “40% kids with some form of fluorosis”

    Oooh, scary! How bad was it?

  116. #116 Matt
    December 2, 2010

    Fluoridation is obviously one of them illuminati mind-control experiments… back in the day we had none of this fancy fluoride and I done only lost 3 teeth. So you don’t you give me none of this fluoride nonsense.

    Now have any of you kind folks seen my tinfoil hat anywhere?

  117. #117 Beaker
    December 2, 2010

    “”no it wont”???? kill your kid – right
    http://www.fluoridealert.org/toothpaste.html
    Half a tube can kill a 2 year old. I hope your kids do not use the candy flavors. But keep telling them it is safe.
    -v”

    And swallowing 6 liters of water within 2 hours kills an adult. OMG!!! WE NEED TO STOP DRINKING WATER, IT’S TOXIC!!!111ONEONEONE

    A kid doesn’t swallow half a tube of toothpaste within a short amount of time. You’re talking about a high dose in a short time, not small amounts over a long time period. A kid brushes his/her teeth with it, swallowing a tiny amount. This amount will be removed from the body way before it becomes toxic.

  118. #118 Prometheus
    December 2, 2010

    From “Sid Offit”:

    “40% kids with some form of fluorosis

    Fluoroiss [sic] = disturbace [sic] during tooth formation
    Disturbance = poisoning [weak link in argument]
    Fluoride = poison”

    Is there any form of crankery that “Sid” doesn’t support? I’m beginning to suspect that he’s just a contrarian (or a teenage boy – pretty much the same thing).

    Prometheus

  119. #119 Tobinius
    December 2, 2010

    Sid Offit:

    40% kids with some form of fluorosis
    Fluoroiss = disturbace during tooth formation
    Disturbance = poisoning
    Fluoride = poison

    Oh, oh, can I play this game too? How about:

    15 to 20 percent of the population suffer from hay fever, with pollen as one cause.
    pollen = seasonal disturbance in breathing.
    Disturbance = poisoning
    pollen = poison

    Yeah, that was fun, pointless, but fun.

  120. #120 Tobinius
    December 2, 2010

    I meant to say: “with pollen as one cause.”

  121. #121 Enkidu
    December 2, 2010

    My pedi prescribed my daughter fluoride drops after she turned one because our water is not fluoridated. Oh the humanity!!!!

  122. #122 rob
    December 2, 2010

    looking at the first graph, i noticed that a zero slope linear fit is consistent with the data. which means that the prevalence of overall fractures does not increase or decrease with flouride concentration.

    i.e. flouride has nothing to do with fractures.

    some annoying things about that plot is that they played connect-the-dots with it and it looks like the kind of crappy plot excel would shit out.

  123. #123 SES
    December 2, 2010
    …Dr. Joe Mercola, who asserts that the real cause of dental caries is high fructose corn syrup.

    Sugar associated with carries? Outrageous!

    If Offit knew anything about chemistry and/or cariology he would understand that (1) not all sugars are alike and (2) while any sugar can be a substrate for acid production in Strep. mutans the real culprit in smooth surface caries is sucrose – not fructose.

    Sucrose allows the bugs to make not only acid, but also sticky glucans which allow them to stick to the teeth. Fructose doesn’t do that.

  124. #124 rob
    December 2, 2010

    oh, and to the people that say that flourine is a poison and you shouldn’t put it in water. the compounds they use are sodium fluoride, fluorosilicic acid, or sodium fluorosilicate. it is not elemental flourine they add, but a compound. the compounds behave differently that pure floruine.

    if you get all freaked out by NaF in your water you should get equally crazy about NaCl on your popcorn. cuz, you know, Na explodes in water and Cl is a poisonous gas.

  125. #125 Sid Offit
    December 2, 2010

    @rob

    oh, and to the people that say that flourine is a poison and you shouldn’t put it in water. the compounds they use are sodium fluoride, fluorosilicic acid, or sodium fluorosilicate. it is not elemental flourine they add, but a compound. the compounds behave differently that pure floruine.

    From the “Introduction” to Chapter 7, “Fluorine-containing insecticides”, by R. L. Metcalf (Handb. exp. Pharmacol. XX.1, pp. 355-386, Springer, Berlin-Heidelberg-New York, 1966):

    “Fluorine has played a significant role in insect control since about 1896 when sodium fluoride and various iron fluorides were patented in England as insecticides. Sodium fluoride was used in the United States for cockroach control before 1900 and was introduced in 1915 for the control of poultry lice

    Seems that sodium fluoride works real good on dem bugs.

    —————————-

    @ Tobinius

    Yeah, lets pay some public health offical to blow pollen into the face of an allergic child every day. Brilliant!

    ——————

    @SES

    Sid knows caries

    if Offit knew anything about chemistry and/or cariology he would understand that (1) not all sugars are alike and (2) while any sugar can be a substrate for acid production in Strep. mutans the real culprit in smooth surface caries is sucrose – not fructose.

    Sucrose allows the bugs to make not only acid, but also sticky glucans which allow them to stick to the teeth. Fructose doesn’t do that.

    animal studies have show fructose to be as cariogenic as sucrose

    pediatric dentistry 4th ed p474

  126. #126 Composer99
    December 2, 2010

    I smell a quote-mine. Or two.

  127. #127 DaveD
    December 2, 2010

    Sid: “40% kids with some form of fluorosis”

    Oooh, scary! How bad was it?

    Exactly. “Some” form of fluorosis. If you go look at that nitwit blogspot page where they are bemoaning this horrible epidemic of fluorosis, and you look carefully at the captions of the charts, you’ll notice that it they cover all types of fluorosis, including very mild and mild. And if you investigate a little further, you’ll find that most cases are indeed either very mild or mild, not even of any real cosmetic significance, much less structural.

  128. #128 Beaker
    December 2, 2010

    @Composer99:
    Well, I mainly smell a complete neglection of the dose use. Something tells me that, when they were spraying, it wasn’t with fluoridated water.

  129. #129 JohnV
    December 2, 2010

    @Minnesota

    “Thanks for the tip, yes I know all about Orac and Barrett. ”

    You are such an idiotic miserable excuse for a crank, you make our regular idiot cranks look merely stupid by comparison.

    Thank you for the laugh. Please don’t get distracted by any shiny objects or loud noises tonight, we’d like more of your wit and wisdom in this thread please.

  130. #130 Drivebyposter
    December 2, 2010

    Doing a google search of sid’s

    Fluorine has played a significant role in insect control since about 1896 when sodium fluoride and various iron fluorides were patented in England as insecticides. Sodium fluoride was used in the United States for cockroach control before 1900 and was introduced in 1915 for the control of poultry lice

    I found nothing scholarly on the internet. I did find that it was used by Nyscof before in a comments section on a blog.
    I found where Sid most likely got the citation though.
    The comments of this blog
    http://covertress.blogspot.com/2010/02/fluoride-and-pineal-gland.html

  131. #131 Drivebyposter
    December 2, 2010

    Oh and I forgot to mention that the book isn’t mentioned on the internet anywhere except where flouride kooks are involved.

    Hell….it may not even exist. Might be like Nixon’s welfare queen; made up entirely and propagated eternally by morons.

  132. #132 novalox
    December 2, 2010

    More conspiracy theories from minnesota, more out of place quotes and posing by sid, and more misunderstanding of basic science by viner.

    I see that the usual suspects are here….

  133. #133 DW
    December 2, 2010

    My dearest Lord Draconis:

    My, these whistleblowers are certainly getting out of hand ( or claw, as the case may be)! I am hoping that my past service in the Ministry of (Mis)Information has had some small effect in defusing their “Truth Telling” to the “People” via the internet. I am happy to report that my new assignment in the Ministry of Acquisitions has been very successful on both fronts : I am scooping up prestigious properties on both coasts ( who says recessions aren’t fun! well, for *us* anyways!) *and* acquiring new shills and minions for *you*- fresh from the ivy-covered halls of elitism – lovely young people, trained in science, enthusiastic and motivated by the lure of fine autos and luxury goods, eager to come on over to the dark side. However, I’m sure you’ll agree that some of our most promising newcomers are not new grads but “finds” recruited right here @ RI!

    That’s all for now, I must fly! ( BTW, thank you for the shoes! such an interesting skin- is it li…, I mean, gecko?- on second thought, maybe I better not ask what it is), most sincerely yours, DW

  134. #134 Sid Offit
    December 2, 2010

    What’s your point? Are you saying sodium fluoride isn’t a pesticide. And yes dose makes the poison and all that and no they weren’t killing bug with a fluoradated garden hose. The post was meant to show the irelevance of soduim fluoride not being a fluorine raised by rob:

    the compounds they use are sodium fluoride, fluorosilicic acid, or sodium fluorosilicate. it is not elemental flourine they add, but a compound. the compounds behave differently that pure floruine.

    this is the actual source from the 1st post. I’m sure its all made up. Like the moon landing

    http://www.fluoride-history.de/p-insecticides.htm

    If the issue is fluoride pesticides, perhaps this ref is more to your liking

    Handbook of Pesticide Toxicology: Principles By Robert Irving Krieger P1407 – Google Books

  135. #135 Johnny
    December 2, 2010

    My Unca Cecil, who has *never* been wrong, addresses fluoridation at

    http://www.straightdope.com/columns/read/2692/is-fluoride-in-water-a-good-thing-or-a-danger

    It dates from early 2007.

  136. #136 Drivebyposter
    December 2, 2010

    I wasn’t denying pesticides using fluoride. My point was, why bother with sources if they are 2nd,3rd,4th,5th,nth hand sources?
    You just copy and paste a quote and a citation without reading the actual thing being quoted?
    That is completely reliable. Its no wonder you come up such bullshit.

    Your source (the Handbook of Pesticide Toxicology) states (on 1407) that fluoridation “is essentially to human health if not human life.” It also states that the only risk of fluoridation is mottling of teeth.
    Your source is very pro-fluoride.

  137. #137 T. Bruce McNeely
    December 2, 2010

    Sodium fluoride is a pesticide! And a rat poison, too!

    So why are we still pissing around with Warfarin and DDT?

    Oh, yeah, another sodium halide that is a pesticide is NaCl – salt. It works like a damn on slugs. It’s also poisonous. Just try drinking seawater.

  138. #138 Lynxreign
    December 2, 2010

    Sid @134

    The post was meant to show the irelevance of soduim fluoride not being a fluorine raised by rob

    Well, that was a failure since it showed no such thing.

  139. #139 Chris
    December 2, 2010

    Sid: “If the issue is fluoride pesticides, perhaps this ref is more to your liking”

    Dude, I use soapy water to kill aphids. If I put baking soda in with the soap water in my sprayer, I also manage to fight black spot and mildew on my roses.

    Are you now going to avoid using soap? (which is made with sodium hydroxide, which is NaOH) Or you also going to avoid all baked goods with baking soda.

    T. Bruce McNeely, beer is also good for slugs. They crawl in and drown. Beer is a pesticide!

  140. #140 isles
    December 2, 2010

    tl;dr

    All I needed to see was that the original post read “The Case Against Flouride.” You corrected it in your text (perhaps without even noticing) but for the love of Christ, if they can’t even *spell* fluoride…

  141. #141 Marsch
    December 2, 2010

    Any one who thinks they are immune from alzheimer’s is a fool. Alzheimer’s is a combination of fluoride and dehydration. Fluoride is every where. A person can not avoid it. It is a known poison and it is accumulative. The more ingested the more accumulation. The fluoride warehouse in the body gets fuller and fuller. No one can control or even knows their bodies dehydration point. As people get older they drink less water as their body starts to shrink. The brain has water priority and how much fluoride is in the water that the brain will use or where in the body will it come from — Only God Knows—–
    The most important part of water fluoridation that no one pays attention to is the fact that the fluoride put in drinking water is hydrofluorosilicic acid and is ( 100 % soluble. Once in the water it is every where. It is impossible to avoid it.
    He who thinks they can avoid fluoride is a bigger fool than he who thinks they are immune from alzheimer’s.

    Gerald Marsch

  142. #142 Noddin
    December 2, 2010

    LOL, pretty much expected some of your reply’s. If you clowns want to have a ration debate, by all means stop throwing your add hominems and make a point i can tackle. Otherwise you come off looking retarted. Do you drink tap water? No? Then shut your god damn mouth. Big surprise; not really…..! You all are FULLY AWARE of the perils of fluoride but you get checks from the USDA or whatever the hell it is so you have to keep shilling. Then you try to seem clever by throwing crap around so people think your just “regular” guy’s. I have been alive long enough to see right threw it all. Find some peace in your conscious and stop selling poison water to kids around the country…. thanks but no thanks, PEACE.

  143. #143 Marsch
    December 2, 2010

    You are all getting one hell of a snow job. I had cigarette tobacco tested for fluoride. Cigarette Tobacco,pipe, snuff, tobacco is tobacco. Do your research and read the material safety data sheet for fluoride. It will blow your socks off.
    My test results were ( 1.50 ppm ) You are consuming way over 1.50 ppm when you add up smoke, food. and even booze. This is the biggest cover up in history.

    We were born to die but please let us do it in our own way.

  144. #144 coby
    December 2, 2010

    Sorry I have not and will not be able to keep up with all the comments, I find myself a little over my head in terms of the number of responses required and the actual subject matter. I did want to reiterate that the misspelling just mentioned was mine, not the authors of the book.

    Li et al keeps coming up, and perhaps this will illustrate just why I am so disappointed with the quality of the argument in Orac’s post. Over at the original post, this was presented by “Greenman” regarding that paper (reproduced in its entirety):

    Some comments on the Li et al 2001 bone fracture study which Didactylos, Paul Connett, and others have been discussing.

    The Li study is important. The 2006 US National Research Council report on fluoride identified it as one of the strongest studies on the question of bone fractures.

    Didactylos is selectively quoting from the abstract of the paper, and it is not clear whether he/she has read the paper itself. The full paper is available online for free at this URL:

    http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1359/jbmr.2001.16.5.932/pdf

    I won’t go into all the strengths and weaknesses of the Li study, but I will try to clarify it so people will understand why Connett and Beck senior have concluded it contains evidence that fluoride levels in drinking water which occur during artificial fluoridation may lead to higher rates of ***hip fractures*** in the elderly.

    Li studied more than 8000 rural Chinese people, age 50 or older, who lived in six nearby villages. The villages were very similar in most characteristics, but their wells had different levels of fluoride. The subjects were asked whether they had ever broken any bones, at what age, and the bone broken. Interview responses for broken bones were checked against their medical records and X-rays, and generally the self-reporting proved reliable.

    It is critical to understand that Li had two main analyses: One was for ***all types of bone fractures*** which he called “overall bone fractures” and the other analysis looked only at ***hip fractures***. There was a good reason for looking at hip fractures separately from all bone fractures. Hip fractures are very common in the elderly and often have poor prognosis. In the US, complications from hip fractures in the elderly often lead to long convalescence and death. Contrast that to a broken arm in a 25 year old. The 25 year old gets a cast and after several weeks or months the arm is usually as good as new. Another reason hip fractures were singled out for special consideration was because fluoride accumulates in bones over time, with most people having steadily higher bone F concentrations the older they get. So, there is special concern that the elderly will have the highest levels of F in their bones and would be most at risk for any weakening effect it might have.

    The Li study found, in its analysis of ***all types of bone fractures*** that there was a roughly “U-shaped” relationship between water F level and rates of fracture. The village with about 1 mg/L fluoride had the lowest rate, while the villages with less than 1 mg/L had somewhat higher rates and the villages with levels above 1 mg/L also had higher rates of all bone fractures.

    But, the analysis of ***hip fractures*** showed a different picture. There was no “U-shaped” curve. Instead, the villages with water F at or below 1 mg/L all had similar rates of hip fracture, but as the water F concentration increased above 1 mg/L the hip fracture rates also increased. Here is how Li describes these results in the paper:

    “After adjusting for age and BMI, the risk of hip fracture was significantly higher in the highest fluoride group (4.32–7.97) than the population with 1.00 –1.06 ppm of water fluoride, which had the lowest prevalence. In general, the hip fracture prevalence was stable up to 1.06 ppm of fluoride and then appeared to rise, although it did not attain statistical significance until the water fluoride concentration reached 4.32–7.97 ppm (Fig. 3).”

    Li summarizes this information in his Figure 3. But as a scientist, my “suspicion antennae” are raised when I notice that the X axis of this graph, which appears to be a scatterplot, is not a continuous scale but is actually a category scale. Thus, the lines drawn connecting the points do not show the true quantitative relationship between the F concentrations and the hip fracture rates. Li’s graph makes the three lowest F villages appear to all have equal sized increments of F between them, when in fact they are closely bunched together. Therefore, the fact that they have similar hip fracture rates can be explained by the fact that they have similar F rates. There may not be any threshold at 1 mg/L F.

    Of course, even if such a threshold existed, artificial fluoridation typically adds F to yield a concentration of 1 mg/L so we are right at the hinge of the threshold. Furthermore, in the US population there is roughly a 10 fold range in how much water people drink. So, some people drinking 1 mg/L F water will get doses of F four times higher than the person who drinks the average quantity of water. There is another way of comparing the Li study to people’s F exposure in the US. Li estimated not only the concentration of F in the drinking water, but also the quantity of water people drank, and then calculated the actual doses. Li’s Figure 1 shows these values and reveals that the Chinese villagers with 1 mg/L F water were ingesting about 3.4 mg/day of F. The NRC 2006 report included detailed estimates of the range of total F exposure for various sub-groups in the US, including for those who drank greater than average amounts of water. It found many adults in the US ingest more than 3.4 mg/day of F. Based on the Li study findings, these people might have an increased risk of hip fractures. Notice from Li’s Figure 3 that the village with about 2 mg/L F had about twice the rates of hip fractures as the village with 1 mg/L F. That is a very steep rise which provides zero margin of safety for artificial fluoridation. When fluoridation defenders say that adverse effects only occur at exposures much higher than can occur to people drinking water with 1 mg/L, they are directly contradicted by the findings of this Li study.

    Incidentally, the Connett, Beck, Micklem book takes the data from Li’s Table 4 and graphs them as a true scatterplot with the X axis a continuous variable, rather than as 6 categories. This graph gives a more accurate visual understanding of the data. For those who would like to read the book, but don’t want to pay for it, just go to your local library. It is amazing what you can find for free in a library which is not available for free online.

    Sorry if this was too detailed and technical for some. It is intended for those who want to discuss the scientific evidence, rather than for those who wish to debate the “extra-scientific” issues.

    When I compare that to Orac’s treatment of Li et all in this post, as I said, I am somewhat underwhelmed. Nor have any of the detractors over at my place made any sort of answer to that. I don’t feel qualified to assure any readers that the above is a water tight argument but surely it rises above the level deserving such ridicule?

    I freely admit that blog-mobbing and name calling is much more fun but can’t someone match their strong convictions with an honest critique of this?

  145. #145 Marsch
    December 2, 2010

    You are all getting one hell of a snow job. I had cigarette tobacco tested for fluoride. Cigarette Tobacco,pipe, snuff, tobacco is tobacco. Do your research and read the material safety data sheet for fluoride. It will blow your socks off.
    My test results were ( 1.50 ppm ) You are consuming way over 1.50 ppm when you add up smoke, food. and even booze. This is the biggest cover up in history.

    We were born to die but please let us do it in our own way.

  146. #146 Drivebyposter
    December 2, 2010

    Noddin, no one is debating rations. go elsewhere for that.
    How do you add hominems?
    A point has been made. Fluoride is useful for keeping teeth healthy and it isn’t poisonous in the doses being delivered in tapwater. Try tackling that.
    Ironic that you accuse someone of being “retarted”
    How do you know we don’t drink tapwater? You don’t? You say you’re a fucking dumbass? We are shocked.
    Perhaps you’ve been alive TOO long and you developed some sort of dementia. Go get checked out by a psychiatrist.
    So….we all get checks from the USDA and sell tapwater to children….?
    Tell me what drugs you do. Please. I want to be able to avoid something that fucks minds up the way whatever it was that fucked yours up.

  147. #147 eliteman
    December 2, 2010

    Orac, a supposed champion of critical thinking makes huge logical fallacies. I’m sure those people who signed the fluoride petition also would say in 2003 that IRAQ was not a threat had no WMD’s. Therefore since Orac believes they are not credible, there must be WMD’s in Iraq and Iraq is a threat to the USA, since these non- credible people can’t be right about anything. If someone is wrong about one thing, does not mean they are wrong about everything.

    If something is true or not only depends on compelling evidence or lack thereof, so you should only debate this matter on this issue. I mean I can’t believe Orac is making logical fallacies that undergrad freshman learn about on Logic classes.

  148. #148 Militant Agnostic
    December 2, 2010

    you get checks from the USDA

    So that is why I haven’t received any cheques. I sent my application for shill payments to Big Pharma when I should have sent it to Big Farmer

    I always like it when trolls end a comment filled with the vilest of insults and accusations with PEACE

    I assume they do this in order to remove any lingering doubts we might have about them being deranged idiots.

  149. #149 coby
    December 2, 2010

    #84: “I really don’t know the science well enough to comment intelligently on it, but as someone working on improving my critical thinking skills, the whole “everybody in the world is wrong except me” thing gives me pause.”

    This is the very reason advocacy groups, regardless of what they advocate, present lists of “experts” who agree. But according to a major portion of this post that is evidence of being wrong.

    My personal opinion is that there is probably about 0 correlation between the correctness of an argument and the presence of a “look these people agree!” list. I would suggest that people who decide to believe in something because of an impressive list of experts are just as ill-advised as those who decide it must be crackpottery on the same basis.

    To the commenter somewhere above who felt I weakened my argument by linking to fluoridealert this is just where the books references can be found.

  150. #150 Orac
    December 2, 2010

    @Coby

    Amazing. It’s almost as though you didn’t actually read my reply in the comments or the more detailed paragraph based on it that I added to the section on Li et al. You also didn’t even address the issue of ecological studies and false positives or, even more importantly, the concept of subgroup analysis and how it is used and abused in studies like Li et al. Neither did greenman. It’s as though you don’t understand the importance of these concepts when looking at this paper.

    Oh, that’s right. You don’t.

    That’s why I’m not impressed by greenman’s analysis either. The reason is that he doesn’t appear to understand the problems of ecological analysis or the problems and pitfalls that are inherent in ecological epidemiological studies any more than you do. Or, if he does, he sure doesn’t demonstrate it in his response. Let’s put it this way. The authors of the book can graph the data any way they want to make the graph “look prettier” or to get a “more accurate visual understanding of the data.” Except that a visual understanding is meaningless, given the study design. It quite literally does not matter, other than to convince the rubes that something more is going on than is going on. Making the graph into a scatterplot doesn’t change the inherent weaknesses of the ecological study design and its tendency to find false positives, nor does it change the problems of doing subgroup analyses on a such a small number of hip fractures, although I suppose it would scrunch up all the fluoride concentrations below 1 ppm to make it look as though the range of “safe” concentrations is much lower. Doing so would definitely make the U-shaped plot in Figure 3 look worse, though, at least as far as correlating fractures with rising fluoride exposure.

    Quite honestly, for purposes of whether this study shows anything, it doesn’t matter if the data are graphed as a scatterplot or a category graph, because we are looking at population-level data (which is what an ecological study is, after all) based on defined ranges of fluoride concentration in the water being correlated with fractures, not individual-level data that includes fluoride exposure for each subject and the fracture history for each subject.

    Be that as it may, let’s, for the sake of argument, say both of these graphs are accurate, and that there is indeed a U-shaped curve describing overall fracture prevalence with a minimum at around 1 ppm and a curve where prevalence appears to start to increase after 1 ppm. What would be the biological mechanism for that? Presumably, because osteoporosis is associated with hip and vertebral fractures, the authors were looking for these kinds of fractures associated with fluoride. However, there was no association whatsoever detected between the different fluoride groups. These two fractures usually rise and fall in parallel with rates of osteoporosis, the most significant risk factor for these fractures in the elderly. One had a weak assocation with the highest levels of fluoride; one had zero. The explanation is most likely to be one or both of the following: Either the hip fracture association detected was spurious, or there weren’t enough fractures to analyze in the subgroups to make meaningful conclusions–or, more likely, both.

    Either way, this study is very thin gruel indeed to base such bold claims regarding hip fractures on.

  151. #151 fk
    December 2, 2010

    “To the commenter somewhere above who felt I weakened my argument by linking to fluoridealert this is just where the books references can be found.”

    Perhaps you should attempt what real scientists do and link to citations that aren’t hosted on websites associating themselves with pseudoscience peddling morons.

    Oh, and thanks a lot coby; as if scienceblogs didn’t have enough morons, you’ve managed to attract the attention of anti-fluoridists and anti-vaxxers. It’s about as nice to see as contracting crabs. Hope you’re proud of yourself.

  152. #152 Chris
    December 2, 2010

    Noddin:

    If you clowns want to have a ration debate, by all means stop throwing your add hominems and make a point i can tackle. Otherwise you come off looking retarted.

    I have seen three posts by Noddin on this blog, they are all the same. A series of insults that he/she somehow thinks can substitute for actual data. Not much of an argument.

    So where to we apply for these checks from the US Department of Agriculture?

    Gerald Marsch:

    Alzheimer’s is a combination of fluoride and dehydration.

    When you make a claim you need to back it up with real evidence. Do try better next time.

  153. #153 Drivebyposter
    December 2, 2010

    Orac, a supposed champion of critical thinking makes huge logical fallacies

    Point them out. Do it. Please. Make sure to explain why these things are what you say they are.
    I await your brillian response.

    Oh and speaking of logical fallacies…

    I’m sure those people who signed the fluoride petition also would say in 2003 that IRAQ was not a threat had no WMD’s. Therefore since Orac believes they are not credible, there must be WMD’s in Iraq and Iraq is a threat to the USA, since these non- credible people can’t be right about anything. If someone is wrong about one thing, does not mean they are wrong about everything.

    This is just fucking retarded. It’s a huge goddamn strawman.
    Orac never said that everyone who signed the fluoride petition were all immediately always wrong.

  154. #154 Mandos
    December 3, 2010

    What about hexapodia? I think they are the key insight.

  155. #155 Tobinius
    December 3, 2010

    Marsch @141

    Alzheimer’s is a combination of fluoride and dehydration

    You might want to let the people who manage the Alzheimer’s Association know about this, as they seem to be completely clueless about this cause for Alzheimer’s. Or maybe they are part of the great conspiracy.

  156. #156 Orac
    December 3, 2010

    My personal opinion is that there is probably about 0 correlation between the correctness of an argument and the presence of a “look these people agree!” list.

    May I then expect that you will be suggesting that your dad tell Dr. Connett that he should take down the list of “3209 scientists” who oppose fluoridation, you know, the list that includes all the naturopaths and chiropractors as “scientists”?

  157. #157 Pareidolius
    December 3, 2010

    It’s got to be rather devastating when you post an article and most of your critics are scientists and the majority of your defenders are pretty much conspiracy wingnuts who can barely string together coherent sentences.

    Miss, this lemonade is too sweet, could you add hominems to it and see if you can retart it? And please fill it to the brim this time so we don’t have to get into a ration debate.

  158. #158 coby
    December 3, 2010

    Orac, no I had not seen the updated text in your post. These at least seem to be thoughtful objections on which I can’t really comment.

    A couple of other relevant references from the Chapter 7 section follow:
    Y. Li, C. Liang, C. W. Slemenda, et al., “Effect of Long-Term Exposure to Fluoride in Drinking Water on Risks of Bone Fractures,” Journal of Bone and Mineral Research 16, no. 5 (2001): 932–39

    M. P. Whyte, W. G. Totty, V. T. Lim, and G. M. Whitford, “Skeletal Fluorosis from Instant Tea,” Journal of Bone and Mineral Research 23, no. 5 (2008): 759–69

    They may well be similarily flawed, I don’t know.

  159. #159 coby
    December 3, 2010

    BTW, those references are from here: http://fluoridealert.org/caseagainstfluoride.refs.html under the Chapter 17 – Fluoride and Bone section, I don’t mean to cherry pick them. BTW, it was stated on the other thread in passing by the authors that they tried to cover all the evidence, not just one side, so please, no accusations of misrepresentation if some of the references do not indicate negative effects of fluoride. These are just references, I do not know in support of what specific statements from the chapter text.

  160. #160 NZ Sceptic
    December 3, 2010

    My husband grew up on a farm with tank water so his mother (who lost her own teeth as child as a result of measles, that fun, harmless merry-making disease anti-vaxers wish on their children) gave him and his siblings fluoride tablets daily. Now in their 40s they have only 3 fillings between them, and my husband (who has NO fillings) has had 2 sick days in the 25 years we’ve been together. Some poison huh?

  161. #161 Travis
    December 3, 2010

    I would be curious what point they were making with the paper about tea.

    A quick look at the abstract, intro etc for
    M. P. Whyte, W. G. Totty, V. T. Lim, and G. M. Whitford, “Skeletal Fluorosis from Instant Tea,” Journal of Bone and Mineral Research 23, no. 5 (2008): 759–69
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18179362

    shows that this is a case study involving a woman who consumed extremely large amounts of double strength tea (1-2 gallons a day throughout her adult life). The results conclude that

    “The instant tea beverage, prepared as usual extra strength using tap water with approximately 1.2 ppm F(-), contained 5.8 ppm F(-). Therefore, the tea powder contributed approximately 35 mg of the 44 mg daily F(-) exposure from her beverage. Fluoxetine provided at most 3.3 mg of F(-) daily.”

    so the majority of her exposure comes not from water but from her extreme tea consumption (though this does give me pause, I drink a lot of tea as well though not this much).

    And the conclusion given is:
    “SF from habitual consumption of large volumes of extra strength instant tea calls for recognition and better understanding of a skeletal safety limit for this modern preparation of the world’s most popular beverage.”

    In this case it appears to have little to do with fluoridation of water, which is a pretty minimal factor in her exposure, but highlights concerns over how the tea is prepared, especially with this extra strength form. But it appears she is a pretty extreme case.

  162. #162 Hank Roberts
    December 3, 2010

    > thoughtful objections on which I can’t really comment….
    > other relevant references … may well be similarily flawed

    I recall in my 300 baud days being told that the way to get good information on Usenet was to post what you thought, and await correction.

    Ya know, it may still work, if you listen to the right people.
    Coby’s listening. Good approach.

  163. #163 MadScientist
    December 3, 2010

    Dang! You even put the Purity of Essence video into the post. Stan Kubrick really knew how to poke fun at loony groups. General Jack D. Ripper was a bizarre combination of Joe McCarthy, the anti-fluoridation mobs, and half a dozen other idiots and idiot groups of the era.

    Within the past 5 years I’ve even seen anti-fluoridation campaigns in regions which have had fluoride in the water for over 40 years. I was even more surprised though to discover that there were still places in the developed world with non-fluorinated water.

  164. #164 MadScientist
    December 3, 2010

    Just 1 little comment on the amount of fluoride in the water: it is extremely small. You’d die of drinking too much water long before you had enough free fluorine to show any of the nasty symptoms of overexposure, but we humans don’t need much of it at all. The toothpaste argument doesn’t work – unless you swallow your toothpaste. The effect of the fluoridation on the dental health of the population is amazing. Unfortunately I grew up with ‘pure’ water, and I can assure the younger folks that their generation has much better teeth than mine, and it’s not because my generation brushed less.

  165. #165 Chris
    December 3, 2010

    Coby:

    These are just references, I do not know in support of what specific statements from the chapter text.

    There are these things called “scientific journals.” Have you ever heard of them? There is an index of most of this planet’s medical journals, it is accessible through a very easy to remember URL: http://www.pubmed.gov .

    Coby, why don’t you try the tactic of actually posting scientific papers to support your contentions instead of a random website address (which usually uses the tried but failed “cherry picking” method). I know, I know… it is a radical concept! But it is worth a try.

  166. #166 eliteman
    December 3, 2010

    @drivebyposter
    Well Orac did spend a whole lot of time attacking the messenger and not the message, implying that an issue should be debated not on evidence but on how “cranky” the messenger is. But drive by and ORAC et al, lets just stick to the evidence.

    The argument for fluoride in the water is it helps our teeth, (why would you ingest it? But that’s another argument)

    So all you have to do is provide evidence that fluoride does that. Please show the studies where people who use toothpaste with flouride is superior to toothpaste without fluoride (of course these people should be matched so the only difference should be flouride).

    Please describe these experiments, since your all about only supporting theories that are backed by evidence.

  167. #167 Drivebyposter
    December 3, 2010

    Orac, no I had not seen the updated text in your post. These at least seem to be thoughtful objections on which I can’t really comment.

    Why not?

  168. #168 coby
    December 3, 2010

    Chris, most of the references at the URL I provided are peer reviewed papers or surveys of the medical literature by scientific bodies.

    But I am actually in the uncomfortable position of defending another’s views against accusations of dishonesty and crackpottery rather than trying to support a contention of my own, which would be easier.

  169. #169 coby
    December 3, 2010

    MadScientist: “Just 1 little comment on the amount of fluoride in the water: it is extremely small. You’d die of drinking too much water long before you had enough free fluorine to show any of the nasty symptoms of overexposure”

    If I understand things correctly, fluoride accumulates in your body over your life time. So this reassurance you offer is incorrect.

  170. #170 Drivebyposter
    December 3, 2010

    Wow eliteman…that was so extensive. Tons of logical fallacies were pointed out.

    http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1600-0528.1995.tb00192.x/abstract

    There. There’s an abstract for a study with positive benefits of fluorine. The study is fluorine in water…but same kind of idea.
    Heres one for toothpaste
    http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/store/mrw_content/cochrane/clsysrev/articles/CD002278/image_n/CD002278_abstract.pdf?v=1&t=gh8rj2vm&s=dce78554a480c700cd1f16cd4aa2997c843a7013

    Took me about 3 minutes. My internet is working poorly tonight.

    Fluoride is in the water because…you know….its widely available, people are already consuming it….doesn’t take much thought to figure out why theyd add it to water. It isn’t consumed because it needs to be…just out of convenience in putting it in water. Pointing out crankiness wasn’t the only thing in Orac’s post. Nice strawman.

    Now show me evidence that fluorine is soooooooooooooooooooo dangerous as is apparently the position that the antifluoridians have.

  171. #171 Chris
    December 3, 2010

    Coby:

    Chris, most of the references at the URL I provided are peer reviewed papers or surveys of the medical literature by scientific bodies.

    Not actually. I actually looked. You should do the same, and really truly only post the real papers by citing the journal, title, date, and authors.

    Funny how you skipped that step.

    If you make a claim, you must provide the evidence that supports that claim. Citing a website that uses only cherry picked cites is not sufficient, you need to do better.

    Do you even know that major cities in the USA (like Austin, TX) actually remove fluoride from their public water system? Please explain. Provide cites.

  172. #172 scienceelite
    December 3, 2010

    Biol Trace Elem Res. 2008 Winter;126(1-3):115-20. Epub 2008 Aug 10.
    Fluoride and children’s intelligence: a meta-analysis.

    Tang QQ, Du J, Ma HH, Jiang SJ, Zhou XJ.

    Department of Pathology, Nanjing University School of Medicine, Nanjing Jinling Hospital, Nanjing, Jiangsu 210002, People’s Republic of China.
    Abstract

    This paper presents a systematic review of the literature concerning fluoride that was carried out to investigate whether fluoride exposure increases the risk of low intelligence quotient (IQ) in China over the past 20 years. MEDLINE, SCI, and CNKI search were organized for all documents published, in English and Chinese, between 1988 and 2008 using the following keywords: fluorosis, fluoride, intelligence, and IQ. Further search was undertaken in the website http://www.fluorideresearch.org because this is a professional website concerning research on fluoride. Sixteen case-control studies that assessed the development of low IQ in children who had been exposed to fluoride earlier in their life were included in this review. A qualitative review of the studies found a consistent and strong association between the exposure to fluoride and low IQ. The meta-analyses of the case-control studies estimated that the odds ratio of IQ in endemic fluoride areas compared with nonfluoride areas or slight fluoride areas. The summarized weighted mean difference is -4.97 (95%confidence interval [CI] = -5.58 to -4.36; p < 0.01) using a fixed-effect model and -5.03 (95%CI = -6.51 to 3.55; p < 0.01) using a random-effect model, which means that children who live in a fluorosis area have five times higher odds of developing low IQ than those who live in a nonfluorosis area or a slight fluorosis area.

    PMID: 18695947 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    LOL 5 times higher odds of a lower IQ, damn driveby moron you’ve been owned. The second link you sent me didn’t work the first no benefit was seen less then 4 years of fluoride use, after the benefit was very small one would have to see the difference in absolute numbers to see if anything could be made of that pathetic study.

  173. #173 science elite
    December 3, 2010

    “which means that children who live in a fluorosis area have five times higher odds of developing low IQ than those who live in a nonfluorosis area or a slight fluorosis area.”

    This line was cut from my last post, from the abstract of Tang et al.

  174. #174 Tobinius
    December 3, 2010

    science elite

    A qualitative review of the studies found a consistent and strong association between the exposure to fluoride and low IQ.

    Interesting, but curious that they didn’t say that there was a statistically significant difference between exposure, non-exposure, and IQ. I wonder why that was? Could it be that none was observed, only a trend? And what level of exposure to fluoride caused this association? Finally, as an aside, has this association been observed in N.A. where fluoridated water has been used for over 40 years?

  175. #175 Didactylos
    December 3, 2010

    If you haven’t quite made up your mind whether the Fluoride Action Network are a load of cranks or not, have a look at how they completely fail to correctly classify cases of fluorosis.

    If they need to lie and call pictures of severe fluorosis “mild” to make their case, is it likely that they tell the truth about anything?

    As to the hyperbolic babble about children dying after eating toothpaste: nobody has died yet, despite vast numbers of children eating “potentially toxic doses”. The same cannot be said of, say, crossing the road. Why do we have such completely different criteria for acceptable risk? Because morons like the Fluoride Action Network try to scare us, that’s why.

  176. #176 Douglas Yates
    December 3, 2010

    @Tobinius
    “…has this association been observed in N.A. where fluoridated water has been used for over 40 years?”

    The answer is found, perhaps, in fewer students graduating from high school, declining proficiency in math, chemistry among those that do, increasing rates of functional illiteracy, 70-80 percent non-participation in voting as well as a general dismissal of the value of science.

  177. #177 Beaker
    December 3, 2010

    @Tobinius:
    “Interesting, but curious that they didn’t say that there was a statistically significant difference between exposure, non-exposure, and IQ. I wonder why that was? Could it be that none was observed, only a trend? And what level of exposure to fluoride caused this association? Finally, as an aside, has this association been observed in N.A. where fluoridated water has been used for over 40 years? ”

    According to the abstract the difference was significant. The p-value was apparantly cut off in the post, but if you look at the 95% confidence interval you’ll see it doesn’t include the 0. Given how far the confidence interval deviates from 0, it probably was strongly significant. However, what isn’t clear from the abstract is what levels of fluoride they are talking about. Since they are talking about naturally occurring fluoride, my guess is the levels will be quite high (4 – 8 ppm).

    Unfortunately I don’t have access to the article at my institution, so I can’t check on that (or other issues).

  178. #178 Dunc
    December 3, 2010

    @48:

    While one could make this argument, Dr. Beck is not doing so.

    He is saying that it’s unethical regardless of the benefit.

    That means being concerned about fluoride and not concerned (it seems) about chlorine is logically inconsistent. It’s this inconsistency that Orac was commenting on.

    Oh yeah, no disagreement there at all. My comment was more of a “pox on both your houses” – neither side seems to be making particularly good arguments on this issue. There’s an interesting and entirely legitimate argument to be had about how much of a benefit would be required to justify a course of action that you might regard as ethically questionable, but nobody seems interested in having it.

  179. #179 Beaker
    December 3, 2010

    @Coby:
    “If I understand things correctly, fluoride accumulates in your body over your life time. So this reassurance you offer is incorrect.”

    I find that claim suspicious. Fluoride drinking water is water soluble and will be expelled quite easily through urine. Safety levels are based on measurements of the expulsion rate through urine (amongst others).

  180. #180 Composer99
    December 3, 2010

    science elite:

    In the study you cite in comment #172, there is some rather telling text:

    The meta-analyses of the case-control studies estimated that the odds ratio of IQ in endemic fluoride areas compared with nonfluoride areas or slight fluoride areas.

    Emphasis mine.

    The study appears to be examining the effects of endemic, naturally-occuring fluoride at levels more likely to match those noted by Beaker in #177.

    As such, the study does not appear to support your assertion that fluoridation of water to approximately 1 ppm carries anything like the same risk of harm.

  181. #181 MartinM
    December 3, 2010

    The study science elite cites is freely available online. The one point that immediately jumps out is that there doesn’t appear to be any mention of quality control; the only reasons given for exclusion of studies was insufficient data. Additionally, their study selection is in part based on a search of the website of the International Society for Fluoride Research; 8 of the 16 papers used in the meta-analysis are from the ISFR’s journal, Fluoride. Quackwatch describes the ISFR as ‘an antifluoridation group.’

  182. #182 Lynxreign
    December 3, 2010

    @eliteman

    You seem to have a very binary way of thinking. If people aren’t to be trusted on something, the opposite of what they say must be true. You make no allowances for the idea that they could be right by accident or that something entirely different from the opposite might be true. You also seem to have trouble telling the difference between someone stating X is true and someone stating others haven’t shown X to be true.

    Alternatives to “flouride in the water help our teeth” include. It hasn’t been studied well enough yet, results are inconclusive and flouride in the water helps some and doesn’t affect others. There are likely other possibilities, all of which oppose stating flatly that flouride hurts people.

    Also, people have already posted quite a few links to papers showing flouride in the water helps people’s teeth here and in the Ill Considered thread that started this.

  183. #183 Drivebyposter
    December 3, 2010

    eliteman. or scienceelite as you like you call yourself now:

    Im not sure you even read the abstract for the first one.

    How is a 35% decrease in dental caries (2.9 standard deviations from the norm) insignificant? It does say people using fluoride supplements for less than 4 years didnt show much benefit. So what? That supports the idea that fluoride use helps, if you have minimal exposure, you’ll get minimal benefit. Also, it mentions people using fluoride supplements for 4 years or more. they DID show benefit, a 26% reduction in caries when compared to children with no fluoride exposure.
    Fluoridated water would appear to be MORE effective than the fluoride supplement.

    Others have pointed out problems with your sources. I’d also have to wonder how accurate it is. If the fluoride was naturally occurring, what else was naturally occurring in the water? What other factors than the fluoride could have effected the outcomes of the IQ test? These are just questions I have, not necessarily actual refutations of mine.

    And I’m Still waiting for that long list of logical fallacies Orac used in his post. Don’t forget that. (Mentioning that he called someone a crank doesn’t count as a list)

  184. #184 locklin
    December 3, 2010

    Wow. Cranky cranks! Thanks for hitting this topic Orac, having just lost a municipal referendum to these people, it’s great to see some reason.

    Had these authors provided a dispassionate argument that the current research provides an indication that fluoride levels should be refined, even drastically, I could have given theme some credence. Unfortunately, like all cranks, they scream alarmist nonsense, cling to any suggestion of danger or outrageous conspiracy theories. If it walks like a quack, talks like a quack, well, then…

  185. #185 Raging Bee
    December 3, 2010

    Toothpaste efficacy is a different issue…

    No, you stupid troll, it’s the same issue: is flouride safe and effective, or is it not?

    …but as to your question, toothpaste is a topical application as opposed to an ingested one. Topical is now believed to be the only protective route

    “Believed” by whom? Has it actually been proven? Got a reference? You know, a reference comparable to the body of work cited by Orac and everyone else who have already proven you dead wrong?

  186. #186 rob
    December 3, 2010

    i was curious about NaF and how poisonous it is. this is from the MSDS:

    LD50, oral (goat, sheep) 100 mg/kg; LD50, oral (wild bird) 110 mg/kg. Oral rat LD50: 52 mg/kg

    so, if you are a goat you can eat about 10 kilos of the stuff and have a 50/50 chance of survival.

    since flouridation of water is in the ppm range, it is hard to see how you could get a lethal dose. what is the half-life in the human body? how long would it take to retain 10 kilos of NaF in your body? i suspect you should worry more about getting killed by a chunk of satellite.

    dental health tip of the day:

    gargling with HF is *not* recommended as a viable alternative to standard flouridation. no. really. don’t do it.

  187. #187 Ash
    December 3, 2010

    On the whole I agree with Orac – there doesn’t appear to be any good evidence of significant effects until you start getting higher concentrations than are added to drinking water (and incidentally those higher concentrations are natural). My own take on the issue, focusing on potential toxicity only: http://ashartus.wordpress.com/2010/12/03/fluoride-toxicity/

  188. #188 Calli Arcale
    December 3, 2010

    Regarding topical versus ingested fluoride, it’s worth noting that the vast majority (indeed, for most people, the entirety) of fluid intake is via the mouth. If you’re drinking fluoridated water, you are getting at least some topical application of it.

    If you’re ingesting fluoride, I bet it also winds up in your saliva, and then it would be getting topically applied to your teeth in low concentration over a long period of time.

  189. #189 Sid Offit
    December 3, 2010

    @136
    It also states that the only risk of fluoridation is mottling of teeth.

    Gotta love those mottled teeth
    ————
    @146
    Fluoride is useful for keeping teeth healthy and it isn’t poisonous in the doses being delivered in tapwater

    Based on weak and biased studies and even if true irrelevant to those not brushing their teeth and subsisting on sugar and white flour
    ————-
    @160

    (who lost her own teeth as child as a result of measles

    New measles side effect. I’ll have to reconsider my position on vaccination

    ————-
    Mad Scientist
    The toothpaste argument doesn’t work – unless you swallow your toothpaste

    Kids younger than 6 may swallow too much toothpaste while brushing,
    http://kidshealth.org/parent/growth/feeding/fluoride_water.html#

    Oppps. Poor kid

    ——————
    driveby
    Your source (the Handbook of Pesticide Toxicology) states (on 1407) that fluoridation “is essentially to human health if not human life.” It also states that the only risk of fluoridation is mottling of teeth.
    Your source is very pro-fluoride.

    His statements on fluoride are absurd boardering on the delusional. Can you help him substantiate the claim Fl is needed to live. You did say you know how to use the internet
    ————–
    @179
    I find that claim suspicious. Fluoride drinking water is water soluble and will be expelled quite easily through urine.

    Fluoride Concentrations in Human and Rat Bone
    Dennis M. Eble, et al
    For ash from whole bone, the lowest value was 378 ppm in a 16-year-old subject, and the highest value was 3,708 ppm in a 79-year-old person.

    Fluoride concentrations in bone were significantly
    correlated with age (r=.62).

    INCHEM
    http://www.inchem.org/documents/ehc/ehc/ehc36.htm
    The concentration of fluoride in bone increases with age
    (Smith et al., 1953; Jackson & Weidmann, 1958). For example, in
    cortical bone from midshaft diaphysis of human femora from areas
    supplied with drinking-water containing less than 0.5 mg/litre,
    Weatherell (1966) found fluoride concentrations ranging from 200 to
    800 mg/kg (ash) in the age group 20 – 30 years and from 1000 to
    2500 mg/kg (ash) in the age group 70 – 80 years, respectively.

  190. #190 eliteman
    December 3, 2010

    Here are the 23 studies that Tang et al was based on. Lots of the exposure for fluoride was from water and grain etc, just like Americans who have lots of exposure from different sources, which is why the precautionary principle should be used.

    http://www.fluoridealert.org/iq.studies.html

    Lol @ driveby did you ever think that something else besides fluoride might be causing the dental benefit such as better hygiene, more trips to the dentist, less sugary products consumed in your study? I mean Europe has taken fluoride out of the water and they are not suffering from a dental epidemic.

  191. #191 Sid Offit
    December 3, 2010

    @183
    How is a 35% decrease in dental caries (2.9 standard deviations from the norm) insignificant?

    Because as has been pointed out before it’s measured by tooth surfaces and not teeth
    ——————-
    Raging Bee
    Toothpaste efficacy is a different issue…

    No, you stupid troll, it’s the same issue: is flouride safe and effective, or is it not?

    …but as to your question, toothpaste is a topical application as opposed to an ingested one. Topical is now believed to be the only protective route

    “Believed” by whom? Has it actually been proven? Got a reference? You know, a reference comparable to the body of work cited by Orac and everyone else who have already proven you dead wrong?

    Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2001). Recommendations for Using Fluoride to Prevent and Control Dental Caries in the United States. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report 50(RR14): 1-42.

    The laboratory and epidemiologic research that has led to the better understanding of how fluoride prevents dental caries indicates that fluoride’s predominant effect is posteruptive and topical

    and

    Caries Research. 2004 May-Jun;38(3):258-62.
    Systemic versus topical fluoride.

    Hellwig E, Lennon AM.

    The actual mechanism of fluoride action is still a subject of debate. A dogma has existed for many decades, that fluoride has to be ingested and acts mainly pre-eruptively. However, recent studies concerning the systemic effect of fluoride supplementation concluded that the caries-preventive effect of fluoride is almost exclusively posteruptive.

    ———————
    @Calli
    http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/pdf/rr/rr5014.pdf
    Saliva is a major carrier of topical fluoride. The concentration of fluoride in ductal saliva, as it is secreted from salivary glands, is low — approximately 0.016 parts per million (ppm) in areas where drinking water is fluoridated and 0.006 ppm in nonfluoridated areas (27). This concentration of fluoride is not likely to affect cariogenic activity.

  192. #192 rick
    December 3, 2010

    Seems like some posters are missing some basics.

    First as a chemist: Fluorine and chlorine are the names of elements. Both occur as elements only as diatomic molecules and are not really naturally occuring in elemental form because both are highly reactive oxidizing agents. Chlorine is relatively cheaply obtained and is used in water purification, sometimes in its elemental form, (Cl2 gas is bubbled into the treatment stream), sometimes in the form of an ionic salt which contains chlorine in an oxidation state where it still has potent disinfection power. Chlorine gas, in its elemental state, was used as a chemical weapon in WWI. Fluorine gas would be just as potent a disinfectant or chemical weapon but chlorine is at least 20 times more abundant than fluorine.
    (ITO chemical weapons fluorine is just slightly more dense than air while chlorine is more than twice, so chlorine is a better choice)

    Chloride and fluoride are ions, are in the most stable oxidation state for those elements, and are not reactive in aqueous solution; both are present in natural waters. The fluoride ion has an established toxic dose, cited in literature, chloride does not, often is it the metal cation associated with the chloride in a salt that is the threat (e.g. lead and mercury). Fluoride is added to water supplies in a number of different compounds, but in all of these the only active ingredient is the F- ion. Fluorine is listed in many references as a trace element necessary for life. As far as ingesting “toxic waste” goes, many industrial by-products are the raw stuff for further production. There are communities in California where a large fraction of the water in municipal systems is recylcled from waste water. The testing standards for this water are more stringent than for bottled waters.

    Most biochemical processes are equilibrium processes, reactions go both ways, with a trend in one direction easily reversed by a disturbance in the equilibrium concentrations. The dental effects of fluoride are an equilibrium process, the higher the concentration of fluoride, the more ends up in enamel. Likewise, one dental treatment of fluoride will not produce a lifetime effect because the lack of fluoride in the environment of the enamel will result in gradual equilibrium loss of the incorporated fluoride. Elevated fluoride concentration is the direct cause of fluorosis. Fluorosis is cited by the JADA as a “cosmetic” issue, but it has also cited structural damage to developing teeth, but only at high fluoride concentrations. The level of fluoride in water where it is added to “optimal level” is about 1 ppm. The JADA found this level correlated to a slightly increased risk of fluorosis, but a big reduction in caries, even when the fluoride causes fluorosis. See the cite below for the JADA take on fluorosis vs caries reduction.

    The similarity between tooth enamel and bone tissue would allow the same kind of equilibrium process to occur in bone structure. But, like in tooth enamel, this is an equilibrium process, and a decrease in fluoride concentration should produce a decrease in fluoride incorporation into bone. I do not know of any bioaccumulation mechanism for a halide ion like those for metal cations. Except for the thyroid, where iodide ion is accumulated; it can accumulate fluoride in situations where fluoride concentrations are high and there is an iodide deficiency.

    J Am Dent Assoc, Vol 133, No 2 (2002), 157-165.
    Prevalence and trends in enamel fluorosis in the United States from the 1930s to the 1980s
    EUGENIO D. BELTRÁN-AGUILAR, D.M.D., M.P.H., M.S., Dr.P.H., SUSAN O. GRIFFIN, Ph.D. and STUART A. LOCKWOOD, D.M.D., M.P.H.
    “Therefore, we know there has always been a trade-off in regard to fluoride use—namely, we expect that a small proportion of the population will develop milder forms of enamel fluorosis in exchange for a vast majority (including those with such fluorosis) benefiting from its preventive effect in regard to dental caries. This trade-off is not unique to fluorides. Other public health preventive interventions, such as vaccines, carry specific side effects. The advantage of community water fluoridation over some other public health preventive interventions is that its only known side effect (enamel fluorosis) is a possible cosmetic problem, with no functional implications or associated morbidity.18
    Therefore, when discussing enamel fluorosis, we cannot ignore the caries-preventive benefits achieved after more than 50 years of fluoride use in general and water fluoridation in particular. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention19 has identified fluoridation of the drinking water as one of 10 great achievements in public health during the 20th century.”

  193. #193 rick
    December 3, 2010

    had not seen the bone studies above at the time of this post. will correct that.

  194. #194 Joseph Hertzlinger
    December 3, 2010

    I’ve been complaining about truth by petition for years.

    I have noticed that kind of collective thinking is much rarer when there is enough real evidence behind a theory—even when the theory has been politicized. We hardly ever hear of pro-evolution petitions and never hear of petitions against cigarette smoking or lead gasoline additives. (Lead can cause brain damage and exposure to lead is positively correlated with voting for Democrats.)

    I have a theory that when scientists sign petitions instead of stating their beliefs individually, it is because they are trying to hide behind each other. If the petition turns out to be nonsense, they can blame somebody else.

  195. #195 Jim Schuiltz
    December 3, 2010

    The EPA Headquarters union in Washington Dc has t5ried to get management and congress to have a moratorium on fluoridation.This is based upon fraud of alt4ered documents and 90% of the documents being ignored when showing risk.. This started in 1985 and they filed a amicus curie brief in 1986 which the federal courts refused to hear. By 2005 11 EPa unions asked congress to have the moratorium based upon cancer risk concerns. By 29 Feb 2008 it was 19 EPa unions asking to halt.
    http://www.nteu280.org is the union website posting 8 position papers on fluoridation and a history of their actions. Just click on the fluoride link. Seems like they have the skill sets to determine risk. They have a long history of speaking out on this issue.

  196. #196 euio3hruioh
    December 3, 2010

    “If they need to lie and call pictures of severe fluorosis “mild” to make their case, is it likely that they tell the truth about anything?”

    It gets worse – Fluoridealert recently posted this:

    Nov. 23: OUTRAGEOUS HEALTH POLICY IN MIDLAND, TEXAS

    What exactly is this “outrageous health policy”? Turns out, just a mildly elevated level of fluoride due to construction on a water plant combined with high levels of natural fluoride in the area’s well water.

    The construction that is currently taking place at the Water Purification Plant will provide for a blending of water from the well fields and surface water. The elevated fluoride is in the well water and by blending with the surface water, the fluoride levels will be lowered. Construction began in February 2008 and will be completed in approximately two years.

    So yeah, Fluoridealert is more than happy to scaremonger by implying with its headlines that these fluoride levels are a result of added fluoride (when upon reading the article, you discover it’s the exact opposite case).

    Too bad Coby still hasn’t noticed that it’s a bullshit website (and from what I’ve seen, I wouldn’t be surprised if he never does).

  197. #197 NZ Sceptic
    December 3, 2010

    #189: Dental Hypoplasia is a well known and documented side effect of measles. In her case the damage was so bad, all her teeth had to be removed. I know you believe vaccine preventable childhood diseases are simply a joyous rite of passage but in reality they are not.

  198. #198 trrll
    December 3, 2010

    The main role of petitions is use by advocates of fringe scientific beliefs to deceive the public and create the illusion of a scientific controversy. The average person has no idea of just how many scientists there are, so a few hundred (often padded to a few thousand with not-quite-scientists like engineers, physicians, “alternative” medicine therapists, etc.) can sound pretty impressive even though it is a minute percentage (in my own somewhat specialized field, neuroscience, the major annual meeting routinely draws attendance on the order of 35,000).

    Scientists who endorse the consensus generally don’t feel the need to organize petition drives, because they are well represented by professional scientific societies. An amusing exception is the pro-evolution petition, “Project Steve,” which counterbalances an anti-evolution petition–but as a kind of “handicap” to illustrate just how much larger is the group that supports evolution (and in honor of Steven J. Gould, a noted evolutionary biologist and evolution popularizer), it only accepts signees whose first name is some variant of “Steven”

  199. #199 Big Blue
    December 3, 2010

    Thanks so much for posting this. Seriously, it inspired me to find out why the hell I have had so many cavities all of a sudden–turns out the local water municipality compromised with the anti-F brigade, and put only a teensy-weensy little bit of fluoride in the water. Had two cavities in forty years, then I moved here and within five years had about ten. Where I grew up, and where I used to live, fluoride levels were 3-8 ppm. Thought, I am getting old, these things happen, and then I saw this post. Now I know I have conspiracy nutters to shout at in the town hall meetings, which warms the cockles of my heart. I love watching the town meeting stenographer write insults into the official record.

    Plus, we are graced with a visit from Lord Draconis. Please give my regards to Lady Astra, we at BigBlue MegaPharma wanted to send her a thank-you card for her delightful guest lecture and symposium on the metabolic processes of xenobiotic organisms, but sadly the intern did not have enough blood for everyone to sign it. In any case, we hope you enjoy the matching Viking hats and Dala horses–our Mikey picked them out himself.

  200. #200 Jim Schultz
    December 3, 2010

    Nov 1 2000 Washington Dc switched to chloramine from chlorine after months of double dosing. Lead blisters blasted off pipes skyrocketing lead levels hundreds and thousands of times over the 15ppb max. The public was not informed for almost three years. They hired Marc Edwards of Virginia tech who with 3 grad students documented the cause and levels. He refused to assist in a cover up so was never paid for the work.
    When the story broke free bottled water and filters were given to 25,000 homes with warnings to not let kids drink the water. The other 100,000 homes with out lead pipes often had the same lead levels but were never warned.
    Masters and Coplan Dartmouth 1999 had warned of this lead leaching issue. Chloramine makes Siliofluorides more corrosive and leaching. Maas 2007 and Coplan 2007 documented this in bench testing and Maas had also tested for lead in over 150,000 homes as a contractor for the EPA.
    RFluoride also seems to have the ability to help toxic metals cross the blood brain barrier. This barrier is not fully formed in babies. Babies have by far the greatest intake for fluoride per body weight in the population when formula is made with fluoridated water. Intake about 2.5 oz per pound body weight. Or about 2 gal per 100 pounds.
    Babies and infants are at greatest risk for lead toxicity also for IQ and violence problems. The Dartmouth study had shown double the kids in the risk level for lead in silio fluoride fluoridated cities.
    DC Watch did report on the DC lead disaster and the Washington Post did have the story for 30 days when it broke. The EPA is now pushing chloramines over chlorine. They do make the water more corrosive and Marc Edwards stated might do tens of billions in damage to US water systems and in homes and business from leaking pipes.

  201. #201 Hank Roberts
    December 3, 2010

    > D.C., chloramine, lead levels extremely high.

    Well, that’s right. Real scandal. Likely many places.

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1817676/

  202. #202 Enkidu
    December 3, 2010

    My collie mix has eaten several tubes of toothpaste, and still lives to cause further mischief (although, he’s eaten a bunch of stuff that aren’t exactly good for anyone’s health). We had to start buying toothpaste in hard plastic casing to keep him from getting into it. He just loves fresh, minty breath I suppose!

  203. #203 Drivebyposter
    December 4, 2010

    Have you tried putting chili powder on teh tube? or really near it?
    My grandmother’s cat used to eat her houseplants until i sprinkled some of that stuff around. Apparently animals don’t like the smell. I’m sure anything spicy would work.

  204. #204 Militant Agnostic
    December 4, 2010

    @203 I tried that using tabasco sauce with a dog – big mistake. When he tried to chew on the forbidden object the result was instant diarrhea.

  205. #205 Rainborowe Spence
    December 4, 2010

    Coby, you might want to read this if you want to understand why subgroup analysis is a problem:

    http://www.badscience.net/2009/04/a-frankly-thin-contrivance-for-writing-on-the-fascinating-issue-of-subgroup-analysis/

  206. #206 Jim Schultz
    December 4, 2010

    To Hank post 201,Fluoridation with siliofluorides makes water more corrosive and leaching of lead from brass, solder, and copper. Lead is only tested for every three years in homes by a sampling method knowing th4e combination of pipe types and connections between different metals makes it difficult to determine which homes will have the problem. This is a huge problem in old schools especially the water fountains. The aerators catch the lead particles the grind them up into smaller particles. The method of testing determines if this is discovered or not.The DC method was to do a high pressure flush after removing all aerators the night before the test. Then do a low pressure slow draw the next morning. This violates protocall and would never report even a severe problem of lead toxicity.
    DC also discovered this lead problem in 2001 but failed to report it in 2001 or 2002 or 2003. They did try to determine the cause and fired Seema Bhat who actually leaked the problem to the press.
    They started a 300 million dollar fix of replacing all lead lateral lines to homes. After 100 million in repairs they tested the results and had greater lead problems. They had combined new copper directly to the old lead line in the home. It was very predicatable to cause more leaching.
    Ph control and exact chemicals and sequence make the differences besides each water is unique. Many plants have no flow control valves so chemical levels change as flow changes. Small cities often let the plant go on autopilot and sometimes discover the problems.
    Ortho, poly or tri phosphate can reduce corrosion and leaching which is what DC ended up doing.
    All of these risks are increased with fluoridation and many times worse with chloramines which most cities now use.
    Is it a risk worth taking and is informed consent given. Do dentists and doctors consider this or are they even aware of this new proven greater risk?
    Again the in home sampling is only done every three years.Even an honest person can miss finding it. A dishonest person can fail to report it. That is what happened in DC. Then they did their best to make the problem go away. The Washington DC health department even claimed to have lost their lead test results after a pubic records request was made. only 201 kids were reported on in a CDC study looking at kids on filtered or bottled water. Lead blood levels decline 50% per month after the exposure. Some were tested up to a year later. This made the study invalid as proof of safety.
    Now most cities use chloramines so the risks have increased for corrosion and lead leaching.
    Marc Edwards ended up proving hundreds if not thousands of kids were made lead toxic with another data base several years later in a peer reviewed study.
    So many cities have had the lead in the water fountain problem. Fluoridation chemical combined with chlorimine is a often ignored proven risk.
    My own cities water plant was almost taken over by the state after not taking actions required for 33 problems. This went on for years with the citizens unaware. Then the commission claimed they were not informed but had paid the fine the year before. Failure is a stepchild. So they fired another water plant guy like they did before.

  207. #207 Jim Schultz
    December 4, 2010

    Thanks Hank for the excellent link for lead leaching from fluoridation and chloramines. It does give some specifics on the DC problem and the three years before telling the public.

  208. #208 Militant Agnostic
    December 4, 2010

    I just notice what Coby’s post previous to the anti-fluoride fiasco was.

    My irony meter just melted.

    Coby is definitely Hard on Equipment

  209. #209 Enkidu
    December 4, 2010

    Drivebyposter: Two of my dogs will eat anything, including chili powder. They think that I’ve just seasoned it for them.

  210. #210 Militant Agnostic
    December 4, 2010

    Enkidu – I am definitely not going to break into your house.

  211. #211 c0nc0rdance
    December 4, 2010

    The comments here and on Colby’s blog exceed my capacity to process in a single sitting. However, I’ve been doing a “lit dive” lately for a video on the topic of water fluoridation.

    What I found was not at all shocking:
    1. Over 80% of the well-published studies show efficacy is well-supported.
    2. While fluorosis is a real health threat, there’s little to no correlation between dosage and outcomes below a floating threshold. Bioaccumulation is not linear or permanent by any means. I see some support for lowering recommended levels by half (0.25-0.5 ppm).
    3. Fluoride in drinking water has multiple modes of action, distinct from fluoridated toothpaste. It inhibits bacterial growth when secreted in saliva, it promotes remineralization, and it replaces hydroxyapatite with fluoroapatite. Some of these are NOT measurable in topical-alone (toothpaste) administration.

    Some example studies:
    1. Cochrane Review: Eur Arch Paediatr Dent. 2009 Sep;10(3):183-91.
    2. Irish pan-lit review: Eur Arch Paediatr Dent. 2009 Sep;10(3):141-8.
    3. CDC study: J Dent Res. 2007 May;86(5):410-5.

    I have no dog in this fight, either, but I can spot the signs of pseudoscience when I see it, so my guard is up.

    I think there is room for serious discussion of policy on the ethics of fluoridated water. It seems a little haphazard and intrusive, and I can see the policy discussion having good points on both sides. On the science, though, I don’t see how you can read the body of literature and come up with a conclusion that water fluoridation is ineffective or uniformly unsafe at recommended levels.

  212. #212 trrll
    December 4, 2010

    The ironic thing, as Orac implies in passing, is that it is possible that a reasonable argument could be made that most people are now getting adequate fluoride from toothpastes and topical dental treatments, and that fluoridation of water is largely superfluous and unjustified given even the minor cosmetic issue of fluorosis. But the antifluoridation zealots are so tied into crazy arguments like asserting that fluoride is “industrial waste” that nobody will ever take them seriously.

  213. #213 Jim Schultz
    December 4, 2010

    To post 210 cOncOrdance, What about collateral damage as post 201 by Hank gives link to. Lead is leached by siliofluorides and new chloramines sharply increase this leaching. Washington Dc is a perfect example from 2001 until past 2003 with out of control lead leaching. Siliofluorides are used in industry to surface treat brass for lead removal. The EPA has known this for years. They did not warn cities of the additional risk of changing disinfectants. Many found out the hard way. Corrosion and lead problems in homes. Not every home but often older homes with several types of metals connected in plumbing. All plumbers known what happens. leaks when fittings are eaten away or rusted. Water plants often have to replace equipment around fluoride injection points. Often the plant design is improper and PH balance is difficult to maintain. PH and temp are big issues.
    Is this side issue of damaging water quality a issue? Marc Edwards of Virginia tech thought this could damage pipes and homes in the tens of billions. He assists in lawsuits in this area. I have seen total pipe replacement required in years from poor water treatment. Every unit of 200 in a Florida condo I worked on when it was built. Then when it was done again years later with plastic CPVC.
    This is not just about teeth. Far from it.
    There are so many other new sources of fluoride exposure then the water anyway. Many foods have far more from processing and pesticides. This was not true years ago. Profume is even used to fluoride fumigant of 200 foods in storage and processing. 900ppm is max allowed for dried eggs and 70-130 for grains and nuts 20-30ppm max. Most things less but this requires no posting on label.

  214. #214 Jim Schultz
    December 5, 2010

    Washington Post just carried an article on the lead Debacle in DC. Sat Dec 4 article. As bad as this article shows they behaved, it was much worse. They did not just ignore health risks of sky high lead levels. They aided in a multifaceted cover up. They even altered the standards to ignore looking for lead in water by design. To shift focus.
    It is government at its very worst. The only person fired back then was the lady who told the press. I read some of the transcripts of the investigations several years ago.
    They screwed up so many things and then did a cover up to allow people to remain at risk. This started on Nov 1 2000 when they switched to chloramine. They were in the middle of the three year lead testing and did not report the off the chart lead levels they discovered. They let people be poisoned for 3 years with no warning. This was criminal behavior. The the EPA ,CDC and Dc health department all conspired to do a cover up to protect themselves and policy. Fluoridation is the lynch pin for this very real lead risk. Faked reporting of test results is not that uncommon. Helps your job evaluation and pay raises.
    Read the Post article for some insight into the CDC and EPA management. This type of honesty issue is why the EPa professional unions say fraud has made fluoride the protected pollutant. Bill Hirzy PHD EPA senior toxicologist told congress this June 29 2000 in Calvert hearings. Robert Carton PHD toxicologist first said this in 1985 as Headquarter EPA union president. He said it was clear cut fraud of altered reports and ignored data.

  215. #215 Pablo
    December 5, 2010

    The ironic thing, as Orac implies in passing, is that it is possible that a reasonable argument could be made that most people are now getting adequate fluoride from toothpastes and topical dental treatments, and that fluoridation of water is largely superfluous and unjustified given even the minor cosmetic issue of fluorosis. But the antifluoridation zealots are so tied into crazy arguments like asserting that fluoride is “industrial waste” that nobody will ever take them seriously.

    I’ve often said the same thing about the “pro-hemp” movement. There might actually be some legitimate arguments, but no one is going to pay attention when they all come from major stoners like Woody Harrelson.

    He doesn’t care a rat’s twit about all the uses of hemp, but one…

  216. #216 Jim Schultz
    December 5, 2010

    Post 214 response, So Pablo believes until we have a better class of opposition we should promote this policy? Ingested and topical exposures are increasing. The goal in 1945 was 1mg per day ingestion for young kids as the theory was pre eruption by ingestion. Now every researcher knows primary benefit is topical but very likely the only measurable benefit. Multiple sources of dental products now handle that many times over in most cases.Even third world has toothpaste.
    Good dental health has at its foundation better nutrition as was documented by Weston A Price in his 1938 book on dental health around the world not yet eating highly processed foods. Dental caries were rare and strong wide jaws with straight teeth were nearly universal. Dentists were rarer. Breads and jams etc bring on the cavities in less then a generation. http://www.westonaprice.org has the study if interested.
    Even Burt at U of Michigan in a 2007 study showed almost 100% with cavities by age 5 in the Detroit study. Cavities have increased in these big city poor minority groups by 12% this last decade. Nearly every one has been fluoridated for several decades. This is not the magic bullet once believed possible.
    Baby bottle tooth is a huge problem often causing a ugly start in life. Rotted black nubs result from sippy cups and bottle with sugar drinks bathing teeth all day or for naps. This is 100% preventable by giving water instead by is epidemic in some population segments. It varies by ethnic groups greatly. Better education prevents this not fluoridation.
    The EPA science unions have taken positions against fluoridation. The first in 1985 in Washington Dc under Bob Carton PHD toxicologist risk specialist. A panel vote had been altered to allow the Max to be raised from 2.0ppm to 4.0ppm under strong lobby from South Carolina. They did not want to install expensive fluoride removal equipment where they violated in several cities. The review panel voted 7-2 not science existed to prove the increase safe even for the one medical effect they considered of third stage skeletal fluorosis. Their advise was altered to say they thought even 8ppm would be safe and on that advise the Max was changed to 4ppm. All the experts signed a letter and tried to get dental journals to publish their concerns. They went to the EPA union who did listen. They thought this was a ethics issue for scientists.
    In ever growing numbers EPA science unions have asked for a moratorium on fluoridation . Congress and EPA management have not taken action. By 2005 11 EPa unions were on the record asking congress to halt. Feb 29 2008 it was 19 Unions representing 10,000 skilled professionals. http://www.nteu280.org is the site with their early position papers and the history of fluoridation and the EPA unions from their perspective. It seems reasonable to consider their position as they are the ranks qualified to make the science based safety and benefit analysis. They have identified risks many also in the 2006 NRC Report of 507 pages. They believe a moratorium is needed and the proper goal for fluoride should have been determined like arsenic and lead as cumulative toxins. A goal of ZERO in the theory and then the real world number. Currently it is 15ppb for lead and 10ppb for arsenic and 4000ppb for fluoride. Bob Carton and Bill Hirzy are the two EPA union spokesmen who handled this issue to the public. Both have articles and videos for the details. Both are in private life now but still very outspoken against EPA policy on fluoridation.
    Must we keep fluoridation until the zealots with their crazy arguments are silenced? Should science be about skill in branding?

  217. #217 Kemist
    December 5, 2010

    I know there must be others here who are old enough to remember the days they came to the schools and painted fluoride on your teeth.

    Weird.

    For us it was a foul-tasting (they called it “strawberry”) paste applied after the yearly dentist teeth cleaning.

  218. #218 rtj
    December 5, 2010

    “Must we keep fluoridation until the zealots with their crazy arguments are silenced?”

    You owe me a new irony meter. Oh, and Coby? You owe scienceblogs an apology for attracting more of these nutjobs out of the woodwork like roaches.

  219. #219 defides
    December 5, 2010

    “Both CAM specialties tend to be anti-vaccine and anti-pharmaceutical to the core and can be reliably expected to be against fluoridation just on the basis of its not being “natural” or because it’s adding a chemical to water, regardless of what the evidence shows. Neither are lawyers.”
    Grammar fail, sorry. ‘Neither are lawyers’ what?

  220. #220 Hank Roberts
    December 6, 2010

    > lead debacle

    Not just DC.
    Not just from water treatment.
    Not over yet.
    Not handled by the current lead level regulations.

    Who knew?

    http://www.vtnews.vt.edu/articles/2010/11/111710-engineering-edwardsunc.html

    “One thing to remember is that Congress usually acts to mobilize the Government’s efforts well after the need for it has become apparent. It usually takes a crisis atmosphere to get them to act, and it usually comes on the heels of demand for more and better Government action. ”
    http://www.epa.gov/history/topics/epa/10c.htm
    Interview With Douglas M. Costle [EPA Journal - Nov./Dec. 1980]

  221. #221 Samantha Vimes
    December 6, 2010

    … I’m *sure* I’ve read that the average IQ measurement keeps creeping upwards. Maybe he’s got it backwards, and flouride is making kids smarter. (I don’t mean that, btw, it’s just a marginally less stupid claim)

  222. #222 Jim Schultz
    December 6, 2010

    Post 220 , Thanks again Hank , This new peer reviewed case study by Marc Edwards proves new buildings with lead free brass valves can still be very lead toxic. Lead free only means 8% lead or less in the brass. Sometimes the lead on the surface is much ,much higher. Just like all the old 30% lead brass. It is rare these newer buildings are tested. Most believe the problem is only in very old buildings. It is most common in the older buildings and most cities only test every three years for lead and only in a small sample.
    Fluoridation increases this leaching greatly. Chloramines increase it more and the EPA strongly pushes their use.
    Common sense is not so common in government.
    Fluoridation increases this collateral damage in other toxins like lead. Poor in inner cities are at greatest risk. The least likely to be aware to protect themselves also. The least like to use a filter even for the baby.

  223. #223 c0nc0rdance
    December 6, 2010

    213, Jim Schultz. I was completely unaware of the lead issue, which shows a weakness in my own research. However, as I search PubMed for fluoride and lead toxicity, I don’t see many health studies of good quality. I would much prefer to make decisions where data exists.

    Here is one slightly alarming paper that might be used to support your assertions:
    Toxicology. 2010 Apr 30;271(1-2):21-6.
    Can you suggest others?

    I know large swaths of Europe still possess lead pipes, and their drinking water is naturally fluoridated at or above 1 ppm. Any data on lead toxicity in eastern France, for example, that you are aware of? It seems like an obvious testbed.

    As I say, I remain truly skeptical on the issue. That is, open minded until I can find adequate evidence either way. Research is a pain, but I care if my beliefs/knowledge are true. I have no vested interest except my own health and that of my family and neighbors.

    The one very large concern I have with the scientific arguments against water fluoridation is the assumption of linear, non threshold models of toxicity. Animal studies on 10 mg/L are less convincing that cumulative large cohort studies at real dosages. I hope you agree.

    You can find me on YouTube if you prefer an offline discussion.

  224. #224 Mu
    December 6, 2010

    Washington Dc switched to chloramine from chlorine after months of double dosing. Lead blisters blasted off pipes skyrocketing lead levels hundreds and thousands of times over the 15ppb max.
    Thousand time 15 ppb is 1.5% (above the solubility limit for most lead compounds) and also lethal with a single glass. I somehow missed the reports of thousands of people in DC dying after their morning coffee in 2000, but it does explain some of the actions of congress at the time.

  225. #225 Mu
    December 6, 2010

    Bah, mixed up ppb and ppm for solubility, still close enough on the lethality so.

  226. #226 Trish Gannon
    December 6, 2010

    Hmm. I am an anti-fluoride crank. Although I came to it only recently – I was a water fluoridation supporter until our community began debating whether or not to remove fluoride from the water, and I took a fresh look at the issue. I came out of it with these thoughts:

    1. Fluoride is beneficial to public health due to its ability to reduce dental caries.
    2. Dental caries carries a health risk – untreated, severe caries can cause death.
    3. Fluoride can be added to municipal water systems at a relatively low cost.

    Those were the pros. Then the cons.
    1. Fluorosis caused by over-fluoridation is an increasing public health issue, though the effects appear to be mainly cosmetic (I could find no studies indicating a health threat due to fluorosis.)It can be quite expensive to treat. (Both my younger children have mild cases of fluorosis, which their dentist offered to ‘fix’ at a cost of thousands of dollars worth of veneers.)
    2. A relatively small portion of the population is allergic to fluoride.
    3. Fluoride must be removed from the water used for dialysis patients.
    4. Fluoridated water is not recommended for use in preparing infant formula.
    5. There is information suggestive that fluoride intake is related to issues with bone density.
    6. We typically fluoridate water to 1.0 mg/L. In 1994 a World Health Organization expert committee on fluoride use stated that 1.0 mg/L should be an “absolute upper bound, even in cold climates, and that 0.5 mg/L may be an appropriate lower limit.”
    7. Studies have shown a decrease in dental caries in areas where the decrease cannot be explained by water fluoridation (with supposition that the decrease may be due to better diets, better dental care and/or increased access to fluoride from other sources.)
    8. In the US, we routinely add fluoride not just to dental products, but to a wide variety of processed foods.
    9. The CDC states that the best use of fluoride to prevent dental caries is topical.

    In our area specifically, we have a population of around 50,000 people. Water fluoridation was only provided within the city limits (pop. 5,000) and only in a system that provided water to about half of that population.

    Given the above, it appeared to me that fluoridating our water provided relatively little benefit (how many of the 2,500 receiving it were children in the age range in which it is beneficial?), and that the benefit of fluoride is rather easily obtained (through dental products, food and, in our area, fluoride tablets provided free of charge) as opposed to an unknown potentially severe risk (potential allergies, a large population of elderly people generally more at risk for bone fractures), mild(?) risk (uneducated parents preparing formula with fluoridated water) and some level of increased costs (cosmetically repairing fluorosis, and the removal of fluoride for dialysis treatments in an area with a high prevalence of kidney disease – we recently opened our SECOND dialysis center here.) And while the cost to add fluoride to the water is relatively minimal, at a time of budgets so tight cities are turning off street lights, any savings can be a benefit.

    It’s unfortunate that many ‘cranks’ also support an end to the addition of fluoride to water, because their presence seems to prevent people from honestly considering the merits of an opposing viewpoint.

    Trish

  227. #227 Vicki
    December 6, 2010

    Trish,

    You make some good points, but to be fair, you should also ask what percentage of those 2,500 people are formula-fed infants, and what percentage of them are elderly people. Either it’s a population of 50,000, or a subgroup of 2,500: it isn’t 50,000 at risk from drinking water that can only benefit the 2,500 who are actually drinking it.

    (There are other questions worth asking, to do with things like the actual uptake of those fluoride tablets, but I just wanted to point out that you seem to be using different populations in different parts of your discussion.)

  228. #228 Jim Schultz
    December 6, 2010

    One would never expect death at the fountain from lead. It is a developmental risk to kids for neurotoxic issues and also kidney damage. And so on.
    My point is siliofluorides and even worse with chloramines can blast off lead from brass old solder and even worse lead pipe. The recent Virginia Tech new building issue had them with 300ppb lead in fountains from lead free shut offs. Even lead free has up to 8% lead. They spent 30,000 to find this problem but then most never test so would never discover. This is more thyical then rare especially in old buildings. Often ignored or faked by high pressure flush after cleaning out lead filled aeriators. Fake security, fake safety. They did this in Dc , they faked every safe report by bad method of test. It proved nothing.
    I really have not researched the lead issue that much. But the DC debacle seems the most glaring for many reasons. It was ignored for 3 years. the did 97 million in repairs that made it worse not better. The CDC and EPA assisted in the cover up with the DC health department. There are no winners in this debacle. I believe it was criminal activity.
    The investigation is sort of like the Wrangle one but slow motion with no final outcome quite yet.
    Water treatment is complex using 40 toxic chemicals and each water is different and each plant is different. Sometimes one batch of chemical gives different results then the last.
    This is a learning experience for everyone as so much data exists. Much of it very poor quality.
    Any benefit seems topical in nature which is the opposite of fluoridation old theory. Yoder K.M. 2007 shows most dentists still believe the old pre eruptive ingestion theory. 85% in Illinois and slightly less in Indiana when tested. Old beliefs die slowly. Study on Pub med.com

  229. #229 Trish Gannon
    December 6, 2010

    Actually Vicki, I wasn’t, though your point is good as I wasn’t clear. I mentioned the greater area population because that’s who pays for the fluoridation. In addition, the dialysis centers are in the fluoridation area and draw from the full population.

    I don’t know the actual uptake of fluoride tablets (the pharmacists say they give away a lot). The incident of dental caries (I know this is a science blog, but can I just say cavities?) is higher in poorer populations… who are less likely to get dental treatment. (Almost completely unlikely here – three years ago we had one dentist who would accept Medicaid payments… now we have none.) They also tend to be less educated in the need for fluoride supplements. However, I’ve been told the surrounding area has a fairly high fluoride concentration in the water. And the poor generally eat a diet high in processed foods, which contains a lot of fluoride.

    So I remain opposed to supplemental fluoridation of our water… but that’s based on our specific situation here. I’m not sure that’s the best choice for other areas, but when other areas oppose it, I would be willing to look at their reasons.

  230. #230 Trish Gannon
    December 6, 2010

    ugh! *incidence*

  231. #231 Jim Schultz
    December 7, 2010

    226 ,229 Trish, On the cavity issue. Most dentists refuse to treat the poor kids on medicaid. It is often claimed 20% do but often it is far fewer. My county in Florida, Volusia has 4 out of over 200 dentists willing to treat poor kids on medicaid. Most only allow them in the office one day a week even then. Florida pays the least 30 cents on the dollar of normal fees. We are number 49 th in providing dental access to the poor said the recent PEW center review. We did not have even one public health dentist for years. Then one who only treated 6 kids a day after treating not one while the office was remodeled for 18 months. This was with a staff of 4 sitting idle. They he quit and they sit idle for one year. The new dentist is paid per kid at 45 dollars and treats 30 a day. The other was paid a flat salary.
    A dentist could go broke treating poor kids. Is fluoridation the smokescreen to make it look like the poor are cared for? Real care involves dentist treatment and education with the foundation of better nutrition. Fluoridation is no replacement in the real world.

  232. #232 Kate
    December 7, 2010

    ProTip of the day:

    When Sid Offit *defends* your position vociferously, it’s a very good indication that your position is probably untenable in the real world. Re-evaluate your hypothesis by going back to first principles and work forward from there as it’s likely you’ve made a glaringly large error in your line of reasoning.

    2nd ProTip of the day:

    Homeopathy is utter clap-trap. Trying to pin the blame for fluoride “poisoning” on a concentration in the range of 1’s or 10’s of ppm makes you seem as though you can’t do simple multiplication, addition, subtraction and division.

    coby:

    You, sir, are an idiot. (That’s not an ad hominem, by the way. I think your ideas are ludicrous because they have no basis in reality. Your apparent idiocy is beside the point.)

    Pablo: How nice for you that you can read Woody Harrelson’s mind! What an AMAZING feat! How utterly FASCINATING that you, and only you, have this magical ability to tell what he REALLY means. … Can you guess what I’m thinking right now about *you*? Bet you can’t!

    …and lastly: if you are such a terrible parent that you can’t find a way to supervise your young children while they brush their teeth to ensure they don’t swallow their toothpaste you ought not to be surprised when the little dear turns out to me a mouth-breathing drool-factory, as you’re also unlikely to supervise their other activities or provide adequate protection from things like lead paint, weird fungi, mold spores, household cleaning products, hanging cords from blinds and drapery, wild animals or the elements. So just give up now, and admit you fail as a loving parent and human being.

  233. #233 T. Bruce McNeely
    December 7, 2010

    This stuff about kids swallowing toothpaste is pretty funny to a parent like me. Kids LOVE to spit! Brushing teeth is one of the few chances they get to do it.

  234. #234 ferp
    December 7, 2010

    The best part is how the title of the book just screams fearmongering. “Hazardous waste” in our water? OHNOES! Of course “industrial byproduct that’s being recycled instead of being dumped” doesn’t quite have the same ring, does it?

    I find it odd that coby does not seem to recognize the tactics being used here are pretty much the same that anti-vaxers and such have used (“THIOMERSAL IS TOXIC WASTE/YOU’RE INJECTING MERCURY IN YOUR FETUSES”).

  235. #235 Jim Schultz
    December 8, 2010

    One would think that Bruce. But the ADA position is fluoridation causes very little dental fluorosis(13%) and young kids swallowing toothpaste most of the rest. And especially th3e worst damage as most agree many of the youngest do swallow about half on the brush. Many also love the taste and eat it. Some brush just for the taste. The Brits and Aussies just both in the last year produced data showing no benefit below 1000ppm. They are now advising 5000ppm for at risk kids admitting more dental fluorosis will happen. The biggest Us study published in 1990 on 39,207 kids showed 66.4% had evidence of fluoride toxicity on teeth. Because the study also showed no measurable benefit they changed the reporting method to show a slight benefit in 5 to 7 year olds. This actually was a delayed eruption shift of cavity curve. Not a actual decrease.

  236. #236 Jim Schultz
    December 9, 2010

    To Ferp post 234, The EPA ordered smokestack pollution scrubbers installed on the Florida fertilizer plants in 1972. Large sections of groves, crops and cattle downwind had been destroyed over decades by airborne fluorides.About 4% of the phosphate rock is fluoride which must be driven off as it is very toxic to plants.
    The US government had admitted that airborne fluorides had done more damage then all other airborne contaminates combined from 1957-68. Most of the settlements had been sealed and many were against aluminum plants.
    George Glasser had written many articles about this toxic brew and human exposures at the phosphate plants. He also got the EPa for Florida to admit this co product risk and that it existed. We have huge radioactive gypsum mountains of forever toxic waste topped by cooling ponds of billions of gallons of very toxic acidic water.This used to all just go in the rivers before 1972.
    In a FOI request George did discover the fact that it was common for this co product to be called scrubber liquor by those claiming it was not. They discussed how to stop this as they knew it was common.
    NSF is not a government agency but was formed in 1988 by the EPA to test and establish standards for this product. To date they refuse to state it is safe for human consumption or has any benefit. They also refuse to provide the specification sheets as regulation requires for each batch d3elivered. H2SiF6 has a AWWA standard of b703-06 but it ends up only being tested for fluoride content. The mines also had produced up to 75% of all US uranium needs in solvent uranium recovery from the phosphoric acid. The last of the 7 units was closed in Lake Wales about 1999. Mosaic has discussed building a new uranium recovery plant for 200 million in Plant City. That is on hold now as the market price of yellow cake is down below 100 dollars a pound. So purchasers get free bonus uranium unknown to them. Phosphate mines create huge long term contamination. Cattle still die when grazing grass for too long around mines long closed. Subdivisions sit on top of many of the old strip mines. I have many family in the area so have visited from the 50’s and lived their myself for a short while.
    A rose is a rose by any name.
    http://www.fluoridealert.org/health/epa/nrc/index.html This should link to the EPA NRC 2006 review.
    The EPA has missed another deadline for new contaminate levels so a notice to litigate was just served to them. This is both for water and Dow fluoride fumigant for foods. Profume which has been used from 2004 on up to 200 food products is called Vikane and has been used to kill termites for decades. Now bedbugs are on the list with strawberries and eggs, nuts and grains, cheese ,cereals and ham.
    Relax your dentist said it is safe and might protect your teeth.

  237. #237 ferp
    December 9, 2010

    It doesn’t concern you slightly that you jump from topic to topic a million miles a minute while citing information on a website that actively supports, of all the people, Joseph Mercola’s work?

    And what is “fluoride toxicity on teeth.”? If you have a toxic level of something in your mouth, by definition, you would be dying. I have an unpleasant feeling that’s what you’re using to describe dental fluorosis…

  238. #238 Jim Schultz
    December 10, 2010

    Silly boy. Chronic long term toxicity is very a different issue from acute such as the LD 50 scale for killing 50% of rats at a certain dose.
    The chronic issue is more about effects on thyroid or para thyroid as the NRC 2006 admitted can happen as low as .7mg daily dose when iodine deficient.
    Do you always insult when you have nothing of value to say?
    In lawsuit fluoridation was proven a risk with no benefit in Texas 1988 Farris and 1980 Pennsylvania, Illinois 1982. The findings of fact still stand untouched. The federal courts did over rule on jurisdiction.

  239. #239 lordsetar
    December 10, 2010

    Jim Schultz #235:

    The Brits and Aussies just both in the last year produced data showing no benefit below 1000ppm. They are now advising 5000ppm for at risk kids admitting more dental fluorosis will happen. The biggest Us study published in 1990 on 39,207 kids showed 66.4% had evidence of fluoride toxicity on teeth. Because the study also showed no measurable benefit they changed the reporting method to show a slight benefit in 5 to 7 year olds. This actually was a delayed eruption shift of cavity curve. Not a actual decrease.

    Are you going to talk about the studies or are you going to cite them?

  240. #240 Cerise
    December 10, 2010

    I grew up in a state that didn’t fluoridate water. I brush my teeth everyday, floss and use mouthwash. I have always had caries and have some now despite visits to the dentist. My fiance eats sugar almost constantly and quite frankly is terrible at brushing his teeth, never flosses nor uses mouthwash. He also rarely goes to the dentist. I was disgusted when he last went the dentist because despite this he does not have a single cavity nor even warning signs of one. When I mentioned it to his mum, she pointed out he grew up with fluoridated water. As for fluoridation being linked to lower IQ, he’s currently working on his PhD after earning class 1A honours. His sister who missed out on the fluoridated water has the same issues I do despite taking care of her teeth with topical fluoride. She’s also not as academic as he is. Needless to say, I was relieved when they recently started fluoridating water in my area. The limitation of fluoride tablets is that people aren’t always going to be consistent with taking them. Fluoridating water is convenient really much like vaccinating newborns for HepB, a blood borne virus they are unlikely to encounter until sexually active.

  241. #241 Cerise
    December 10, 2010

    As for the anti-vaxers, I’m just waiting for the day that an epidemic of measles, mumps or Rubella rips through their ranks. The true tragedy of it will be that immunocompromised people, infants, people who can’t be vaccinated due to allergy and nonresponders to Rubella for example such as myself will also be in the firing line. But hey provaxers are the selfish ones for wanting them to vaccinate for the greater good. Sorry for getting off topic. I’ve spent the better part of this week feeling sick over someone promoting the AVN as a good source of unbiased information. Never mind the basic facts not even related to vaccination that the organization has gotten wrong.

  242. #242 Luna_the_cat
    December 10, 2010

    im Schultz #235:
    The Brits and Aussies just both in the last year produced data showing no benefit below 1000ppm. They are now advising 5000ppm for at risk kids admitting more dental fluorosis will happen.

    I live in the UK, and I call bullshit. What data? Citations, please!

    I’m also going to throw this into the mix:
    http://www.bma.org.uk/health_promotion_ethics/environmental_health/Fluoriwater.jsp

  243. #243 Sid Offit
    December 10, 2010

    Luna, I posted this over on the other blog

    @ Luna

    So you are upset about what fluoride is potentially doing to people, on the one hand, and you hang out with people who advocate using treatments which are far more dangerous, on autistic children, on the other?

    I find it bizarre you believe a books credibility is determined by the harmful ideas espoused by a program used for the promotion of said book. If I’m promoting a book should I avoid avowed socilst Lawrence O’donnels msnbc show even those his socialism has done more damge that even chelation. Should I avoid the progressives on the View as well as uber-liberal Larry King?
    ———————

    It’s probably safe to say that fluoridation of the water has the largest dental-caries-prevention effects in lower-income populations with low rates of compliance with dental recommendations for toothbrushing and regular cleanings

    Yes lets all give our children dental fluorosis so we can help those feeding their kids lolly pops

    PS – Kids don’t get regular cleanings at the dentist

    ——————-

    Results: For 5/6-yr-olds, mean primary caries scores were 96.0% less in fluoridated than nonfluoridated subjects – In 8–12-yr-olds, DMFT values favoured water-fluoridated subjects; their caries-free trend was significant

    I don’t have access to the entire study – only the abstract, but the author makes no mention regarding delayed eruption in the primary dentition (where he/they cite 96% impact) He does mention it having no effect in the permanent dentition but fails to put an efficacy number on the 8-12 year old group. Maybe delayed eruption accounts for such splendid results. Interesting we go from 96% to just “significant”

    —————————

    Colleagues at a nearby mouse lab were unable to confirm your assertion that “It is well known that a rat needs to receive a dose 5-10 times as high so as to reach the same plasma levels as a human”

    The Textbook of Pharmaceutical Medicine By John P. Griffin P132 – goes into some detail on rats vs. humans

    Also google “rats typically require higher doses of drugs than humans to observe an effect” (the web address is quite long)
    ———————–

  244. #244 Luna_the_cat
    December 10, 2010

    Sid, I replied over on the other blog. Your reference is irrelevant to the question, as it does not refer to fluoride absorption. Sadly, most of your post is equally composed of misunderstanding and irrelevance.

  245. #245 Vicki
    December 10, 2010

    Jim,

    A jury verdict on a finding of fact means that a group of six or twelve people, with limited resources, decided that one argument was more persuasive than the other. The jurors not only aren’t allowed to do their own research, in the United States they aren’t allowed to question the witnesses (e.g. to follow up on testimony) or to take notes on what they hear. The lawyers also get the opportunity to disqualify potential jurors for, among other things, previous experience in the area.

    If jury verdicts always reflected physical reality, O.J. Simpson would be both guilty and not guilty of two murders: the civil and criminal juries reached different verdicts, possibly because they were using different standards of proof.

  246. #246 ferp
    December 11, 2010

    “If jury verdicts always reflected physical reality, O.J. Simpson would be both guilty and not guilty of two murders: the civil and criminal juries reached different verdicts, possibly because they were using different standards of proof.”

    Civil lawsuits basically have reduced requirements for proving one’s guilt as far as I’m aware, so yeah, that was pretty much the reason why criminally he was not found responsible, but civilly he was.

  247. #247 Hank Roberts
    December 13, 2010

    http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2010-12/fsu-rda120910.php
    “Public Release: 9-Dec-2010
    Journal of the American Chemical Society
    Researcher develops accurate method for detecting dangerous fluoride
    Used in the proper amounts, it can make teeth stronger and aid in the treatment of osteoporosis. When excessive amounts are consumed, however, it can be a killer ….”

  248. #248 Hank Roberts
    December 13, 2010

    And before anyone goes ballistic over that, it’s not my opinion; odds are good it’s not the opinion of the researcher or the American Chemical Society. It’s a press release, dammit. Someone should check it out.

  249. #249 Pablo
    December 13, 2010

    Hank Roberts – maybe YOU should read the paper.

    Jesus, just looking at the title I can tell you it says NOTHING about whether municipal water should be fluorinated.

    That comment is pulled, at best, from the introduction. Moreover, it’s true – excessive amounts of fluoride can be dangerous. The question is, what is excessive? This paper certainly doesn’t address that, but does describe a nice new analytical procedure for measuring fluoride concentration.

    Man, talk about a non sequitor.

  250. #250 Humane Sorrows
    December 4, 2011

    Since WHEN did drinking lead, arsenic, mercury, aluminum in ANY amount, along with the industrial waste grade chemicals of sodium fluoride, sodium fluorosilicate, Fluorosilic Acid ever become SAFE?

    Read this: http://sapphireeyesproductions.blogspot.com/

    Then BOTHER to READ Professor Paul Connett’s book.

    You might be considered useful to this debate AFTER doing these two fundamental actions (ie. Actually READ the book, before you spit lies and vitriole). Until then, the ‘Pro Fluoride’ bunch are just regurgitating the same tired old garbage they’ve spouted to keep their personal pockets lined and people fooled.

    Little babies deserve better than a soup of heavy metals pumped into their bloodstream and traversing the blood brain barrier. And everyone else too.

    The vitriole and fear-mongering towards one well written, extremely well referenced book, shows the power the Truth has to shine on the lies of ignorance.

  251. #251 Robert G
    December 4, 2011

    This article cites the Fluoride Action Network’s website and decides to hone in on a single feature – a list of professionals opposed to fluoridation. But, what about the rest of the site? How about reviewing, for example, the Health Effects Database ( http://www.fluoridealert.org/fluoride-health.aspx )? Also contained on the website is a full list of online references, which supplement the book in question ( http://www.fluoridealert.org/caseagainstfluoride-refs.html ). This would be a far more productive approach.

  252. #252 Common Sense
    December 4, 2011

    Since figures show Tasmania which has had fluoridation for upwards of 50years has the worst dental fluorosis in Australia. Melbourne is complaining that thyroid, diabetes,obesity, heart probs in babies and cancer figures are up. Could it be chemicals causing these problems? Australia buys in Chinese “hydrofluorosilicic acid” and dumps it in Queenslands water, I would like there to be chemical toxicity tests made available. Since the only blood tests are those carried out by the very people who inject this stuff into the water, how can we see integrity or indeed, have trust in our governments?? If it is so good for us, what is the need for governments to safeguard themselves against litigation? Who pays, Who gains? Follow the dollars. Stop bickering children, the above blogs would cause anyone to vomit.

  253. #253 Humane Sorrows
    December 4, 2011

    It’s interesting to see that those so adamant they won’t read Paul’s book, are so quick to throw vitrole on a Professor with a PhD in Chemistry http://www.chelseagreen.com/authors/paul_connett And yet these same arrogant, spiteful tongued folk give few references to their opionionated views. ‘The Case Against Fluoride’ gives more than EIGHTY TWO pages of Scientific references ie. http://www.fluoridealert.org/caseagainstfluoride-refs.html

  254. #254 Connie
    December 4, 2011

    is this supposed to be a science blog? of course fluoridation is damaging people’s health! and what is more, you have no say in whether you want to be medicated or not! all water fluoridation should cease immediately, and those that do believe in fluoridation should be provided with the poison at no cost, so they can freely poison themselves and their families, but let the rest of us have the choice to NOT ingest waste products from aluminum and fertilizer production.

  255. #255 Sandy
    December 4, 2011

    This article is clearly designed to ridicule scientists and doctors and established scientific studies which prove fluoridation is harmful, so people are deterred from looking at the truth. But there is a mountain of credible evidence showing ingestion of fluoride is harmful to health… Fluoride inhibits enzyme activity in every cell of your body, affecting digestion, proper bone formation, brain function, endocrine function… and it creates nervous system disturbances… That’s why they use fluoride to fumigate produce and kill insects, to kill rats and mice etc. It attacks their central nervous system. That is what fluoride does. FACT. It is an S6-S7 poison. Look up the chemcistry for yourself. Ingesting small amounts of fluoride over time ends up being more toxic than if you were to have one high dose, because fluoride accumulates. The older you get the more your body tissues (the calcified parts) absorb and store fluoride. There is a reason that in the 40’s they used to call it ‘The Devil’s Element’. The writer of this article obviously is also not aware that practitioners of naturopathy and chiropractic have to study longer than allopathic (drug) doctors in the area of anatomy, toxic elements and nutrition. Just to educate the writer,these disciplines are taught in university degree courses: Chiropractic Science Degree – Macquarie University: http://courses.mq.edu.au/2012/Undergraduate/Degree/Bachelor+of+Chiropractic+Science

    Bachelor of Clinical Sciences (Naturopathy) Degree – Southern Cross University: http://www.scu.edu.au/schools/hahs/index.php/4/

    I believe the correct term for this article writer is a ‘shill’. They are paid to spread disinformation for the benefit of vested commercial interests, and usually use techniques such as ridicule, but with no scientific backup or proof in their statements. Don’t give them any credence. Just understand how ridiculous their comments really are… and move on.

  256. #256 NJ
    December 4, 2011

    Oh, dear, someone left the gate open over the asylum again…

  257. #257 Alison
    December 4, 2011

    of course fluoridation is damaging people’s health
    citations needed…

  258. #258 Krebiozen
    December 4, 2011

    Humane Sorrows #250,

    You linked to a blog that helpfully shows a lot of analyses of the concentrated sodium fluoride and hydrofluorosilicic acid that is added to the water supply in Adelaide. This interested me as I spent several years working in labs that measured heavy metal concentrations, among other things, in human blood and urine.

    The amount of heavy metals and other contaminants they found in the fluoride concentrate is tiny, and once it had been diluted 1 in 200,000 in tap water to give a fluoride concentration of 1 mg/L, heavy metal concentrations would be well below the safety limits for drinking water, as shown on the analysis sheets themselves. For example the first set of results shows total heavy metals in the concentrate of 26.58 milligrams per liter with a safety limit of less than 200 milligrams per liter. In the final drinking water this would give a concentration of 0.1329 micrograms per liter (there are 1000 micrograms to a milligram) with a safety limit of 1 microgram per liter.

    The highest level of mercury found was is 7.9 milligrams per liter in the concentrate (most were much lower), which when diluted would be 0.0395 micrograms per liter. An average kilogram of tuna contains 760 micrograms of mercury (the EPA safety limit is 1000 micrograms mercury per kilogram of fish, though there have been calls for it to be lowered to 300 micrograms per kilogram), so there is nearly 20,000 times as much mercury in tuna as there is in the same weight of Adelaide drinking water due to fluoridation. To put this into perspective, you would have to drink 2000 liters of Adelaide water to ingest as much mercury as there is in 100 grams (about 4 ounces) of tuna.

    I can’t see any level of contamination of any contaminant on any of the analysis sheets that exceeds or even comes close to the safety limits. When you consider that such safety limits usually have a factor of at least 10 and sometimes more built into them, I would suggest that the drinking water in Adelaide is perfectly safe to drink.

    I honestly don’t understand what you are so concerned about.

  259. #259 humane sorrows
    December 4, 2011

    NJ – Oh, what – is the NHMRC here?! And I concur — yes, you personally are showing your true asylum colours, eh! The Asylum of spiteful words, of lies and propaganda is alive and well. If you wish to heap scorn, and point your fingers, go ahead. You know, sticks and stones and all that…. But we can see clearly that you have not demonstrated any solid, factual, evidence of the peer reviewed papers of longterm SAFETY DATA of ingesting an S7 poison, a known, banned neurotoxin – no, you’ve not provided anything of note with proper sources, references and SCIENCE. All you’ve personally shown everyone, is your ability to write immaturely with a spiteful, arrogant and nasty tone. Grow up – go get a set of balls; and, show us how rational – not dumb – you could be. Those who have written with sources, are to be commended, for at the very least, being scientific (which is of course, what this article writer is
    whining about).

  260. #260 Mephistopheles O'Brien
    December 4, 2011

    Golly, humane sorrows, that seems like an awfully nasty, spiteful response.

    I took a quick look through several of the references cited in ‘The Case Against Fluoridation’ – none of the ones I looked at said that water fluoridation was dangerous. Could you take a second to comment on which of those supports the anti-fluoride thesis? Thanks.

  261. #261 Lawrence
    December 4, 2011

    Wow – Australia does have its share of nuts, doesn’t it?

  262. #262 NJ
    December 4, 2011

    humane sorrows @ 258:

    Grow up – go get a set of balls

    Mine are in their biologically evolved place; the same cannot be said for your brains.

    As the movie clips above illustrate (in this year old post), anti-fluoridation crankery was a staple of 1950’s John Birchery. And as the text of the post demonstrated, there has been no serious challenge to the utility of water fluoridation in the more than half-century since.

    What there has been is the low background noise of a few conspiracy nuts. As illustrated by the posts that reactivated this thread and, well, you.

    So, go back to playing with your beads, child, and leave the science understanding to those of us who can do so. There’s a good chap now.

  263. #263 Chris
    December 4, 2011

    In the American Southwest there is lots of natural fluoride in the ground water. Many municipal water systems actually remove some of it to a level that will not cause brown stains on teeth.

    Since much of Australia has similar dry areas, I wonder how much fluoride is in their ground water?

  264. #264 Krebiozen
    December 4, 2011

    I have a comment in moderation pointing out that the analyses on the blog Humane Sorrows links to shows that levels of heavy metals and other contaminants in Adelaide water due to added fluoride are all well within safety limits.

  265. #265 Common Sense
    December 4, 2011

    Forget all the sciences on both sides, answer me this question, why do we have to pay for and be medicated with a neurotoxic waste product if it isn’t all about lining someones’s pockets? Spillages and overdosing has been documented. When it was first placed in our watersupply, when it was possible to get an unbiased reading. 250mls in a cup of tea which I sent for testing independently came back at 2ppm. I don’t think this was ideal!

  266. #266 Narad
    December 4, 2011

    250mls in a cup of tea which I sent for testing independently came back at 2ppm. I don’t think this was ideal!

    And why, pray tell, would you send brewed tea for “testing independently”? Oh, right.

  267. #267 Andrew
    December 4, 2011

    “Forget all the sciences on both sides”

    No, thank you.

  268. #268 Humane Sorrows
    December 4, 2011

    Regarding the Australian Government documents from the blog, the ‘safety’ dose on ingesting Mercury on a daily basis is 0.002mg/l http://water.epa.gov/drink/contaminants/basicinformation/mercury.cfm#four – the FOI documents show ranges from .067 to 7.9 mg/l And, come to think of it, since when was there a ‘safety’ limit on drinking Uranium? And does one still wonder why we are in epidemic proportions of Alzheimers, given the high analyses of Aluminium per litre? As for the ‘science’ angle – I think you will find, if you read the book written by Professor Paul Connett (who holds a PhD in Chemistry), that it is rooted in Science. So hold off your comments, until you can provide a written Scientific response to that said book. As for the comment of ‘no serious challenge’ to the utility of water fluoridation… LOL! China, Belgium (who don’t fluoridate their own water), sell their waste to the (now dumber) Aussies to drink; most of Europe have banned fluoridation; and the USA is removing fluoridation schemes at a rate of one to three cities/towns a WEEK http://www.fluoridealert.org/ Why? It’s an archaic, undemocratic, and dangerous practice. Additionally, caries can not be prevented by ingesting an industrial waste product – but stop eating white sugar and flour in the vast quantities people lazily choose to ingest, and dental health improves dramatically – NOT dependent on how rich or poor one is. But, until a written Scientific response is given by all those who have not bothered to read Professor Connett’s book, I’m wasting my cyber chat time. But good luck – you’re still going to have to handle the fact that you’re not on the right side of history any longer. Science has proven that, time and again. Truth is, truth, no matter how unpalatable. Upholding the industrial revolution’s solution to how to cheaply dump waste chemical products, by putting them into our drinking water – well, that’s not a very clever solution at all considering all the damage it is doing to our species, and the environment. Why, the Australian TGA cannot even provide safety data (as there is none) on ‘fluoride’ (a known neurotoxin, an S7 poison); and have never approved ‘fluoride’ for human consumption. Smacks of corruption don’t you think? But for all of you who still go on about the merits of S7 in our drinking water, turn a blind eye. Go back to sleep. When the whole planet has been chemically poisoned, the air, water and earth no longer livable, maybe our grandchildren might finally ‘get it’. And curse those who did nothing but uphold the chemical company agenda’s.

  269. #269 Krebiozen
    December 4, 2011

    Narad,

    And why, pray tell, would you send brewed tea for “testing independently”?

    It’s not as if tea naturally contains high concentrations of fluoride, is it? What’s that? Brewed black tea may contain up to 9 milligrams of fluoride per liter?

    I’d say 2ppm, which is the same as 2 milligrams per liter, is a low value for brewed tea. I prefer high-fluoride tea myself, as I live in an area with low natural fluoride levels in the water and no fluoridation.

    By all means argue the evidence about of fluoride and dental caries, possible toxicity and the ethics of mass medication, but please don’t invent heavy metal poisoning, or claim that your water has too much fluoride in it when you have contaminated it with fluoride-containing tea.

  270. #270 Humane Sorrows
    December 4, 2011

    Heavy metals ACCUMULATE, even in tiny amounts (since when did any heavy metal be ‘healthy’ or safe’ to ingest?) – these build up in the body. Disease rates in Australia are through-the-roof, rampant. USA is off the charts full of disease. Join the dots. Melbourne’s drinking water is both unpalatable and, highly chemicalised: http://www.jaymahcreationsaustralia.com/healthwarnings.htm
    The bottom line is, ‘follow the money trail’. The governments that continue to put chemicals in water to dispose of waste products cheaply, cannot provide the long-term safety data. Full, stop. And, why should I be forced to drink an S7, with mercury, aluminium, cadmium, uranium and lead – in ANY quantity? Explain to me this as being a ‘good thing’??? And if it’s hot weather, I might drink twice or thrice or more, the advised ‘safe’ limit of 1mg/l fluoride a day ie. the DOSE cannot be measured or monitored adequately. Those drinking more water, get bigger doses of this toxin. And, who is checking the population anyway? Too much of a ‘one size fits all’ plan of attack; but lots of pandering to those who are too lazy to clean up their diet, and not take any care to what they put in their mouths. Answer these questions scientifically, and you may have a case that is credible. Until then, the lack of ethics and lack of safety data does not stack up, credibly. And just because something has been done for fifty years, does not mean it is ‘safe’, or, ‘effective’, when so much of the Science says, otherwise. Bring back the ‘Precautionary Principle’. Our children’s brains, deserve better than a daily dose from tap water (and all things made of tap water) of known neuro-toxins.

  271. #271 Narad
    December 4, 2011

    Heavy metals ACCUMULATE, even in tiny amounts (since when did any heavy metal be ‘healthy’ or safe’ to ingest?) – these build up in the body. Disease rates in Australia are through-the-roof, rampant.

    Yah, that fourth-highest life expectancy in the world is a veritable Götterdämmerung. Are you peddling something or just lonely?

  272. #272 Lawrence
    December 4, 2011

    Deja Vu all over again – didn’t we go through all of this last year at some point (need to use the search function).

    Not only in the Science there, but it has been done to death – it really is just a few cranks that keep this thing alive.

  273. #273 novalox
    December 4, 2011

    @(in)humane sorrow

    [citation please] from a journal, not a crank website, or you are just an idiot crank.

    Actually, you probably are, by necroing a year-old thread.

  274. #274 The Very Reverend Battleaxe of Knowledge
    December 4, 2011

    You know you’re dealing with totally ignorant morons when they call aluminum a “heavy metal”, or think there’s any way to avoid drinking the third most common element in the earth’s crust after it’s filtered through clay (largely aluminum), or breathing it as part of the trillions of dust (largely clay) particles you take in with each lungful.

    And the argument is really only a little less stupid with most of the other elements they want to demonize. Yes, cadmium is bad and so is lead—and we try our best to keep them out of the air and water. What percentage of antifluoridation nutjobs buy tetraethyl lead additives to put in their gasoline? A higher percentage than the general population, I’ll bet—unleaded gasoline is a wimpy liberal commie plot, just like phasing out incandescent light bulbs….

  275. #275 Narad
    December 4, 2011

    Oh, I’ll defend incandescent bulbs on a churlish level. I’m so f*cking energy-efficient that I feel perfectly entitled to choose my own illumination source. What we need is LICENSES! Yah, that’s it. You have to earn your bulbs.

  276. #276 herr doktor bimler
    December 4, 2011

    when it was possible to get an unbiased reading. 250mls in a cup of tea which I sent for testing independently came back at 2ppm

    So it’s not possible to get “an unbiased reading” now?
    There are mail-order testing scams who can be trusted to report a scary list of high levels of toxins in whatever sample is sent to them (+ $$$). But such companies close down; or are Suppressed by the Authorities (take your pick).

    lots of pandering to those who are too lazy to clean up their diet, and not take any care to what they put in their mouths

    This contempt for the non-phobic majority of the population comes from someone who is too lazy to catch rainwater, and instead expects the municipal authorities to provide tap-water that meet his or her exact specifications.

  277. #277 alison
    December 4, 2011

    @265 – er, you do know that tea (Camellia sinensis)contains small but measurable amounts of fluoride, don’t you? (In the form of sodium monofluoroacetate…)

  278. #278 Chemmomo
    December 4, 2011

    Humane Sorrows

    Heavy metals ACCUMULATE

    I thought we were talking about FLUORIDE.

    Since when is fluoride a metal?

    Please check your periodic table.

  279. #279 Narad
    December 4, 2011

    This contempt for the non-phobic majority of the population comes from someone who is too lazy to catch rainwater

    I think all non-brainwashed people are well aware of how easy it is to mix fluoride into jet fuel and thus use chemtrails as a dispersal mechanism to eliminate this freedom vector.

  280. #280 herr doktor bimler
    December 4, 2011

    you do know that tea (Camellia sinensis)contains small but measurable amounts of fluoride, don’t you? (In the form of sodium monofluoroacetate…)

    Nonsense! Next Alison will be telling us that 1080 poison is natural and biodegradable.

  281. #281 Robert G
    December 4, 2011

    RE: Water fluoridation chemicals –

    Despite many attempts by researchers to acquire the evidence from health authorities that the industrial-grade silicofluoride chemicals used to fluoridate water supplies have been adequately tested for safety for long-term ingestion by humans, they have been unable to do so. The chemical manufacturers (such as Incitec Pivot Limited) have also failed to provide this data, instead shifting the issue to third parties, who in turn cannot provide the data, thus maintaining a cycle of “oh, we don’t have it, try those guys; maybe they have it… oh, no, we don’t have it; ask these guys… and so on.” Here are some quotes and links below that shed some light on the issue:

    “Hydrofluorosilicic acid is recovered from the smokestack scrubbers during the production of phosphate fertilizer […] Fluorosilicates have never been tested for safety in humans. Furthermore, these industrial-grade chemicals are contaminated with trace amounts of heavy metals such as lead, arsenic and radium that accumulate in humans […] Long-term ingestion of these harmful elements should be avoided altogether.”
    http://www.slweb.org/limeback.html

    The EPA admits to having no studies on the long-term Health Effects of Silicofluorides:
    http://www.fluoridealert.org/images/letters/EPA-Masters.jpg

    Further reading:

    Dr. Connett et al cover the silicofluoride issue in The Case Against Fluoride ( ISBN: 9781603582872 ). See: pp. 16–22
    http://books.google.com.au/books?id=DEqDaoNTo2IC&lpg=PP1&pg=PA16#v=onepage&q&f=false

    Also see:

    http://www.fluoridealert.org/chemicals-in-fluoridate-water.aspx
    http://www.fluoride-journal.com/01-34-3/343-161.pdf
    http://www.nteu280.org/Issues/Fluoride/flouridestatement.htm
    http://dianabuckland.webs.com/nosafetydatafl.htm

    Potential effects of extremely low doses of toxins on the brain:

    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4072416559052593081

  282. #282 NJ
    December 4, 2011

    Yeah, if you follow the link that ‘Humane Sorrows’ has, it leads to a Website that includes (in addition to the fluoride crankdom) a whole section on…you guessed it…mercury in vaccines and autism.

    Crank magnetism. Shocked, shocked we all are!

  283. #283 Denice Walter
    December 4, 2011

    Let me see if I have this straight, according to alt med, vaccines are loaded with Hg and Al, chicken drenched with arsenic, and tea has (( shudder)) fluoride. Based on my patterns of consumption, I should be dead.

  284. #284 Humane Sorrows
    December 4, 2011

    Krebiozen #258 & 264
    Chemmomo #276

    Where are your source references to your Mercury statement ? We’d love to see them.

    The EPA safety limit for Arsenic is ZERO for human consumption: http://books.google.com.au/books?id=DEqDaoNTo2IC&lpg=PP1&pg=PA22#v=onepage&q&f=false p.22

    As for Lead? Fluoride increases the uptake of lead into children’s brains: http://books.google.com.au/books?id=DEqDaoNTo2IC&lpg=PP1&pg=PA22#v=onepage&q&f=false p. 22

    Fluoride has a known link to Alzheimers ( http://www.fluoridealert.org/health/brain/ pt.6 ) as it increases the uptake of aluminium (and I never said specifically, that Aluminium was a ‘heavy metal’ – I made a generalised comment about all of the heavy metals found within the analyses).

    The point is, to be DELIBERATELY ADDING these heavy (or otherwise) metals to our drinking water supplies, is, WRONG.

    Until the safety data for long term ingestion of sodium silicofluoride, sodium fluoride and hydrofluorosilic acid is done and transparently disseminated, along with approval by the (Australian) TGA for human consumption (which currently, fluoride has not been), we are deeply deluded to the lie perpetuated, that fluoride is ‘safe’.

  285. #285 Humane Sorrows
    December 4, 2011

    Tell us all herr doktor bimler, please, we’re all itching to see YOUR REFERENCES that vaccines are entirely ‘safe’. The website you mention gives articles of interest. It does not state either way, what a person must think – only gives information for further research. So, your shilldom, doesn’t wash for any sensible discussion. Give us YOUR peer reviewed sources that mercury (Thimersirol ), and all vaccines, are safe for all (see, http://www.jpands.org/vol8no1/geier.pdf p.10 ). Until then, you don’t make any sense at all. What credentials do you have, to make such statements? Are you a Toxicologist? Better still, give us a written Scientific response to this: http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4072416559052593081

  286. #286 Narad
    December 4, 2011

    Based on my patterns of consumption, I should be dead.

    Have you contemplated the possibility that you already are, but the worldly fluoride poisoning of your pineal gland and resulting vibratory toxicity* are impeding your ability to effectively travel astrally to your final destination with the Star Beings? We all know what happened to Bill Bixby in Steambath.

    * PDF warning.

  287. #287 Humane Sorrows
    December 4, 2011

    Page one, only: http://www.fluoridealert.org/health/biblio.html

    Have any of the ‘pro’s, looked over this (first page) and made written Scientific responses?

    mmmmmm……

  288. #288 Narad
    December 4, 2011

    Did someone order a backhoe?

  289. #289 Lawrence
    December 4, 2011

    Wow – another one of these wackos – referencing the Geiers no less….the search function on here is a wonderful thing.

  290. #290 Militant Agnostic
    December 4, 2011

    Humane Sorryass @281 gives us a reference to JPANDS (a reich wing fundamentalist christian crank journal) and a google video in one comment. Someone must have whackaloon bingo by now unless we are playing to blackout.

  291. #291 Krebiozen
    December 4, 2011

    Humane Sorrows,

    the ‘safety’ dose on ingesting Mercury on a daily basis is 0.002mg/l – the FOI documents show ranges from .067 to 7.9 mg/l

    You have misunderstood this – there is 7.9 mg/L mercury in the fluoride concentrate that is then diluted 1 part in 200,000 parts of water. No one is going to drink 20% hydrofluorosilicic acid! So the water that comes out of your tap will have 0.00004 mg/L of mercury in it, 50 times lower than the EPA safety limit.

    Where are your source references to your Mercury statement ? We’d love to see them.

    They are on the analyses of the fluoride concentrates you linked to, on the right hand side of the page as I explained – for mercury that limit is less than 200 mg/L in the concentrate, equating to 0.001 mg/L once diluted in tap water – they clearly use safety levels standards lower than the EPA does. The numbers on the right are the safety limits, the numbers on the left are the actual concentrations found. Notice that they are all well within the safety limits.

    You can check the safe limits on the EPA website if you want. EPA action limits in drinking water are 2 micrograms per liter for mercury as you stated above – maximum in fluoridated tap water from your figures is 0.04 micrograms per liter.

    The other heavy metals and other contaminants are also well within safety limits once diluted.

  292. #292 Chemmomo
    December 4, 2011

    Humane Sorrows,
    you missed my point. How can I take any of your science seriously when you persist in calling fluoride a metal? Do you expect me to believe that you understand how the EPA sets safety limits for human consumption when you clearly don’t understand one of the simplest concepts in chemistry?

  293. #293 Krebiozen
    December 4, 2011

    Humane Sorrows,

    The EPA safety limit for Arsenic is ZERO for human consumption:

    Not according to the EPA on their website:

    EPA has set the arsenic standard for drinking water at .010 parts per million (10 parts per billion) to protect consumers served by public water systems from the effects of long-term, chronic exposure to arsenic.

    Highest concentration in the fluoride concentrate in the FOI documents was 5.2 mg/L which once diluted in tap water equates to 0.000026 parts per million, or 0.026 parts per billion, again well within EPA safety limits.

  294. #294 Conspiracy is Everywhere
    December 4, 2011

    It’s awfully convenient that a supposedly anti-fluoride activist makes such weak arguments for the cause – almost as if Orac is paying someone to make anti-fluoride folks look foolish. If “Human Sorrows” keeps coming back with unconvincing arguments, we’ll know for sure that she’s an undercover pro-fluoride shill (the alternative – that there are no convincing anti-fluoride arguments is technically possible, but how likely is that?)

  295. #295 Narad
    December 4, 2011

    How can I take any of your science seriously when you persist in calling fluoride a metal?

    Perhaps it’s the astronomical sense. Pardon me for a moment. (BWAAAHAHAA. Ooh. No, wait, no… AAAAHAHAHA AIYEEEEEEE… heh, phew, pant. In, out, in out.) This really does have Flaky Foont vs. Mr. Natural written all over it.

  296. #296 Denice Walter
    December 4, 2011

    @ Narad:
    Not dead but remarkably well-preserved.
    One of the benefits of shill-dom ( minion-hood?)- they can’t have *us* going around dying now, could they: it would be bad for business.

  297. #297 herr doktor bimler
    December 4, 2011

    Tell us all herr doktor bimler, please, we’re all itching to see YOUR REFERENCES that vaccines are entirely ‘safe’. The website you mention gives articles of interest.

    Possibly you are confusing me with Krebiozen. I grant that the names are similar.

  298. #298 lilady
    December 5, 2011

    @ Human Sorrows: Why don’t you “Google” Mark and David Geier and tell us what you think of their treatment of children with autism. What suggestions would you make for “natural” chelation…instead of that nasty chemical that chemically castrated the kids.

    Maybe you want to consult the JPANDS site…after all there is an interesting article about the Fuehrer’s doctor who was executed after the war. It’s a very interesting analogy, claiming that physicians who are for a national health care plan and care for patients on Medicare are on a par with the Third Reich physicians, found guilty of crimes against humanity.

  299. #299 Alison
    December 5, 2011

    Herr Doktor @ 280: you know me too well… http://sci.waikato.ac.nz/bioblog/2009/11/topical-1080.shtml

  300. #300 Krebiozen
    December 5, 2011

    Some of you may have missed the link posted by Humane Sorrows at #250. It is to a blog where someone has posted scans of chemical analysis reports of contaminants including heavy metals found in the hydrofluorosilicic acid and sodium fluoride that are used to fluoridate water in Adelaide. These were obtained under a freedom of information request. The highest values found were 7.9 mg/L mercury, 5.2 mg/L arsenic and less than 2 mg/L lead, with a maximum total heavy metals of 65.9 mg/L.

    Humane Sorrows appears to have mistaken these reports for reports of actual water quality, as s/he has compared them to the EPA limits for drinking water. For example the highest amount of mercury was 7.9 mg/L in the concentrate, and the EPA drinking water safety limit is 0.001 mg/L mercury. In fact this material is greatly diluted before reaching anyone’s tap. The hydrofluorosilicic acid is 20% (20 grams per 100 mL = 200 g/L = 200,000 mg/L), so it has to be diluted 1 in 200,000 to get the required 1 mg/L fluoride. The sodium fluoride requires a similar level of dilution. Once diluted all the contaminants are at a concentration far below the safety limits.

    I thought it was interesting to see how a fluoridation myth appears to have started. Someone has made a FOI request and then misinterpreted the data they obtained, believing they have uncovered an evil plot to poison the citizens of Adelaide with heavy metals. I am sure this misinformation has been spread far and wide and we will continue to see it resurface for years to come.

    The truth is they are a factor of 200,000 out. You can see an analysis of the actual water that comes out of the taps in Adelaide in a spreadsheet here. The heavy metal levels look very similar to those in my drinking water in London UK, which is not fluoridated.

  301. #301 David Marjanović
    December 5, 2011

    Fluoride inhibits enzyme activity in every cell of your body, affecting digestion, proper bone formation, brain function, endocrine function… and it creates nervous system disturbances… That’s why they use fluoride to fumigate produce and kill insects, to kill rats and mice etc.

    That’s fluorine, not fluoride.

    By your logic, salt (sodium chloride) is a poison gas (chlorine), and burnt limestone (calcium oxide) is air (oxygen).

    Humane Sorrows,
    you missed my point. How can I take any of your science seriously when you persist in calling fluoride a metal? Do you expect me to believe that you understand how the EPA sets safety limits for human consumption when you clearly don’t understand one of the simplest concepts in chemistry?

    Seconded.

  302. #302 Prometheus
    December 5, 2011

    David Marjanovic (#301):

    “That’s fluorine, not fluoride.”

    Fluoride ion is a pretty broad-spectrum enzyme inhibitor, which is why it is used in certain blood collection vials. That’s also why sodium fluoride is a potent insecticide, rat poison, etc. Even fluoridated toothpaste can be deadly, if you can gag down enough of it.

    Fluorine isn’t used as much, since it is a highly reactive gas and dangerous to transport and work with.

    Of course, at low levels, like what you might receive from fluoridated tap water, it has no significant effect on enzyme function (all life on the planet has evolved to tolerate low levels of fluoride, not to mention mercury, arsenic and lead, as they are all widely distributed).

    At these low levels, fluoride can substitute for hydroxyl in the hydroxyapatite of bones and teeth, converting them partially to fluoroapatite, which is a bit harder and denser. Fluoroapatite also has the useful property – for teeth – of resisting attack by acid better than hydroxyapatite.

    As is typical, the anti-fluoridation crowd has missed the vital point that “poison” depends on the dose. Water, salt, even oxygen can be toxic in high doses.

    Prometheus

  303. #303 Krebiozen
    December 5, 2011

    David Marjanović,

    That’s fluorine, not fluoride.

    To be fair to Humane Sorrows, fluoride is an enzyme inhibitor, but in higher concentrations than you find in tap water. It’s used in blood collection bottles for glucose measurement, as it inhibits enolase, thus preventing glycolysis by blood cells. There is 10 mg of potassium fluoride in a 5 ml blood bottle, giving a fluoride concentration of 2000 mg/L, which is 2000 times the tap water fluoridation target of 1 mg/L.

    I can’t find any experiments showing that any enzyme is inhibited by the levels of fluoride found in the serum of rats given even 200 mg/L fluoride in their drinking water (about 0.6 mg/L). Clearly serum levels in humans drinking fluoridated water at 1 mg/L will be much lower. Maybe Humane Sorrows can enlighten me.

  304. #304 Humane Sorrows
    December 6, 2011

    David Marjanović – You have CLEARLY NOT READ my posts CORRECTLY. I’ve never once said fluoride was a ‘heavy metal’. BUT, Fluoride, what I have said is, that when bagged/scraped from the phosphate smoke stacks, fluoride comes mixed with many heavy metals, as indicated in the blog post here:http://sapphireeyesproductions.blogspot.com/ If you still feel that ‘fluoride’ is somehow ‘pure’, and good for everyone (as if we’re just walking sets of teeth only, without any other soft tissues this stuff will be absorbed into) well, YOUR ‘science’, is pure quackery! LOL!

    “Hydrofluorosilicic acid is recovered from the smokestack scrubbers during the production of phosphate fertilizer […] Fluorosilicates have never been tested for safety in humans. Furthermore, these industrial-grade chemicals are contaminated with trace amounts of heavy metals such as lead, arsenic and radium that accumulate in humans […] Long-term ingestion of these harmful elements should be avoided altogether.”
    http://www.slweb.org/limeback.html

    The EPA admits to having no studies on the long-term Health Effects of Silicofluorides:
    http://www.fluoridealert.org/images/letters/EPA-Masters.jpg

    Krebiozen – By the way, this comment, “Someone has made a FOI request and then misinterpreted the data they obtained, believing they have uncovered an evil plot to poison the citizens of Adelaide with heavy metals. I am sure this misinformation has been spread far and wide and we will continue to see it resurface for years to come” is a very misplaced comment ie. the FOI documents were obtained by Independent politician, the Hon. Ann Bressington, MLC (SA), and, Dr Andrew Harms (Ex President of the SA Dental Association) – and the ‘interpretation’ is very clear ie. this stuff IS in our drinking water, as part of the mix from the bagged chemicals of ‘fluoride’ coming from either Incitec Pivot, or, Shanghai Chemicals (China) – this is not some ‘mistaken’ interpretation. AND, where, anywhere, is there a written ‘comparison’ to the EPA standards? ?? WHAT? Where? You are making this stuff up now.

    And don’t you love how each month the water was tested, the chemical levels VARY WIDELY ie. we are being dosed inconsistently, each month. So, what will the doses be each day, for everyone ie. including little babies, kidney patients, etc, etc, etc, etc.

    I’m sure many people would be disgusted to be drinking ANY quantities of Aluminium, Arsenic, Mercury, Lead and URANIUM in small quantities, knowing that this stuff is culmulative poison – for that IS what we are being forced to deal with as ‘water quality’ (putrid, eh!) on a daily basis. And if you still have a problem with these FACTS, I suggest you deal with both these reputable people.

    No, there is no ‘conspiracy’. Just plain FACTS. And just in case you cannot see the wood for the trees, most people who have come into this issue have done their research to find out the Truth of this chemical mix, and don’t get paid to promote such poisons like the industries. The people who are ‘anti’, have done hard research to seek to find out the Truth which is done in their own time, unpaid, with no vested interests.

    FACT: Big Industry is dumping their phosphate/fluoride wastes into our drinking water, despite it being illegal to dump it in the ocean, rivers, or, land. But bag up the smokestack chemicals, and sell it, and it magically becomes a ‘product, to be processed by our kidneys. Sheesh.

    You might like to read the following, from another poster, on another thread:

    Despite many attempts by researchers to acquire the evidence from health authorities that the industrial-grade silicofluoride chemicals used to fluoridate water supplies have been adequately tested for safety for long-term ingestion by humans, they have been unable to do so. The chemical manufacturers (such as Incitec Pivot Limited) have also failed to provide this data, instead shifting the issue to third parties, who in turn cannot provide the data, thus maintaining a cycle of “oh, we don’t have it, try those guys; maybe they have it… oh, no, we don’t have it; ask these guys… and so on.” Here are some quotes and links below that shed some light on the issue:

    Further reading:

    Dr. Connett et al cover the silicofluoride issue in The Case Against Fluoride ( ISBN: 9781603582872 ). See: pp. 16–22
    http://books.google.com.au/books?id=DEqDaoNTo2IC&lpg=PP1&pg=PA16#v=onepage&q&f=false

    Also see:

    http://www.fluoridealert.org/chemicals-in-fluoridate-water.aspx
    http://www.fluoride-journal.com/01-34-3/343-161.pdf
    http://www.nteu280.org/Issues/Fluoride/flouridestatement.htm
    http://dianabuckland.webs.com/nosafetydatafl.htm

    Potential effects of extremely low doses of toxins on the brain:

    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4072416559052593081

    Posted by: Robert G | December 4, 2011 4:50 PM
    SOURCE thread: http://scienceblogs.com/illconsidered/2010/11/the_case_against_flouride.php

  305. #305 Humane Sorrows
    December 6, 2011
  306. #306 Gray Falcon
    December 6, 2011

    Humane Sorrows, you’ve misidentified a halide as a metal, and confused compounds with their elemental components. For comparison purposes, that’s equivalent to getting advice on auto repair from someone who doesn’t know what an engine is.

  307. #307 Prometheus
    December 6, 2011

    “Humane Sorrows” (#304):

    “The chemicals used in fluoridation are:

    Yes, we know – all very scary chemical names, but did you notice the concentrations as discussed above? Here’s a hint: very few people on this ‘blog are going to run shrieking to the bottled water because you link to a list of chemicals.

    Next, I expect we’ll hear a lecture on “purity of essence”.

    Back to you, General Ripper.

    Prometheus

  308. #308 Humane Sorrows
    December 6, 2011

    You know, anyone who still thinks S7 (HYDROFLUOROSILICIC ACID) is good for you… in any form, name, colour of the bag, is simply, mad:

    http://data.rmt.com.au/msds/3082468.pdf

  309. #309 Gray Falcon
    December 6, 2011

    You mistook a gas for a metal. You don’t get madder than that.

  310. #310 Humane Sorrows
    December 6, 2011

    ‘concentrations’ Do you forget, that fluoride is not eliminated at all in children; and only 50% in a healthy adult? So, if the dose is not able to be adequately monitored from drinks, foods, showering (absorbing via the skin transdermally), etc in this stuff, how can you be such experts in all people being kept, ‘safe’? Pure, nonsense. This stuff is no good at all, for babies: http://www.fluoridealert.org/health/infant/index.html

    Further reading: http://www.fluoridealert.org/health/accidents/acute.aspx

  311. #311 Gray Falcon
    December 6, 2011

    So, by your logic, we should all be dead now. Fluoride salts exist in nature.

  312. #312 Prometheus
    December 6, 2011

    Anyone who still thinks cobalt chloride is good for you …

    http://www.inchem.org/documents/icsc/icsc/eics0783.htm

    may be “simply mad”, although it is required (the cobalt, at least, in micronutrient amounts) by all organisms on the planet.

    The dose makes the poison: too much cobalt = dead; not enough cobalt = just as dead.

    Prometheus

  313. #313 Humane Sorrows
    December 6, 2011

    “Fluoride salts exist in nature.”

    Hydrofluoroslicic acid does not exist in nature – it is scrubbed from the smokestacks of the Aluminium/Phosphate industry. Neither, Silicofluorides. Or, sodium fluoride.

    Calcium fluoride does exist ‘in nature’, but causes great misery:http://www.fluoridealert.org/health/bone/fluorosis/index.html

    Why are you all upholding the dosing of the masses with S7? Have you pockets to line by upholding these lazy chemical companies that care not a hoot for anyone but themselves?

    Guess you’ll be telling us all that fluorosis is ok, and that it’s ‘only cosmetic’ (would you like it on your teeth?) – instead of the tell-tale sign one has overdosed on fluoride? http://www.fluoridealert.org/health/teeth/fluorosis/mild.html

  314. #314 Gray Falcon
    December 6, 2011

    I’m more willing to trust scientists who know what they’re doing over someone who consistently fails to understand the most basic of concepts. Seriously, if dosage doesn’t matter, then stop breathing. At the right concentration, oxygen can be toxic.

  315. #315 Narad
    December 6, 2011

    Hydrofluoroslicic acid does not exist in nature – it is scrubbed from the smokestacks of the Aluminium/Phosphate industry. Neither, Silicofluorides. Or, sodium fluoride.

    Leaving aside the issue of what you think “in nature” means, what do you think villiaumite is?

  316. #316 herr doktor bimler
    December 6, 2011

    Has Humane Sorrows linked to *any* source outside the hermetic confines of ‘fluoridealert’?

  317. #317 Humane Sorrows
    December 6, 2011

    herr doktor bimler Disputing the links from credible sources in a single site is no crime. Firstly, you will have to discredit the Science from the varied sources. Just because the database is extensive, and it is easier to find in one spot, does not make the information ‘wrong’ – you poor lad, you are really clutching at straws if this is your pathetic argument. Fluoride Alert is a vast compilation of reputable websites, articles, links, etc, to MANY other sites – and many people use the ease of the collations on this one site to find other many sites. Keeps life simple.

    But if you must, how about a just a few of these for more research:
    #1 is one of FAN’S compilations (oooooooooooo!) of MANY sites:
    http://www.fluoridealert.org/pesticides/links.htm

    http://www.slweb.org/bibliography.html

    http://www.nteu280.org/Issues/Fluoride/fluoridesummary.htm

    http://muse.jhu.edu/search/results?search_id=2032197779&action=reload

  318. #318 Humane Sorrows
    December 6, 2011

    It’s interesting how righteous most of the ‘pro’s are on this forum, to holding onto their opinions – amassing nit picking, instead of wholistic views. We are more than walking sets of teeth. Or are you all, toxicologists too?

    The bottom line is, fluoridation is banned in most other countries in Europe and China (these millions of people MUST all be ‘wrong’ though, eh?) due to a variety of reasons:

    http://www.fluoridealert.org/govt-statements.aspx

    http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1600-0528.2007.00373.x/abstract;jsessionid=C9FAE58D64026DF0D5CC2C820389F025.d03t01

    The USA is VOTING (but we don’t have that luxury in Australia – no, it’s forced). In the Government’s infinite wisdom, they introduced legislation to protect themselves from litigation! Why, if fluoridation is so “safe and effective”?

    VICTORIA

    No person has any right of action against-

    (a) a water supply authority; or

    (b) a member of a water supply authority; or

    (c) a person acting under the direction of a water supply authority; or

    (d) a person acting on behalf of a water supply authority under a contract
    made between that authority and the person-

    in respect of anything done in regard to the fluoridation of a public water
    supply in accordance with the provisions of this Act.

    QUEENSLAND

    (1) This Act binds all persons, including the State.

    (2) However, nothing in this Act makes the State liable to be prosecuted for an offence.

    Just as well! With ALL THE spills, leaks, malfunctions and subsequent overdoses throughout the years, legal bills could easily skyrocket if anyone – heaven forbid – had to take ‘responsibility’ for an accident.) and tipping fluoridation out of their water, at a rapid rate (one to three cities a WEEK!): http://www.fluoridealert.org/

    Further reading: http://www.fluoridealert.org/rfw-nations.htm

    But of course, these links are found in one spot – the huge database at FluorideAlert.org. Collates most information, links, research, that is found worldwide, into one spot – oh, but that is such a sin, eh!

    Hang on to your fluoridation jobs ‘pro’s’ – whilst you can – the people don’t want fluoridation and the Science gives good reasons why not to support it.

    Sorry, fluoridation is outdated, based on fraudulent Science, and barbaric (forcing this, is unethical to say the least. If YOU want fluoride, go purchase some pharmaceutical grade fluoride pills for a few cents a bottle; but better still, I’m sure the fluoridation plants would be willing to sell you a bag or two of the industrial grade powder that we are currently drinking, that you can mix into your food and water – I believe Chinese fluoride is going cheap!). Forced ‘medication’ of industrial waste is unwanted by most people (ie. ‘fluoride is safe and effective’ is the line parroted by most pro’s, despite there being no long-term safety data ANYWHERE in the world).

    Another great article to read and debate with Dr Connett (IF you have the guts): http://www.fluoridealert.org/absurdity.htm

    Until then, I’m waiting for one of you ‘pro’s’, to provide a written, Scientific, peer reviewed response to Professor Paul Connett’s book with the 88 pages of Scientific references: http://www.fluoridealert.org/caseagainstfluoride-appendices.html It’s a painstakingly collated book. Let’s see you do the same, and painstakingly write your written response; or better still, publicly debate Professor Connett. We’ll have our camera’s waiting (or will you all get shy, and state that camera’s are somehow unscientific too? Put your faces to your names, and debate this issue, ethically, scientifically. Name your date and place, and I’m sure Professor Connett (with a PhD in Chemistry), amongst others, will show up). Or perhaps you’d like this guy instead: http://nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/medicine/laureates/2000/carlsson-cv.html

    Until then, there really is little left to say to all you pro’s – and you are welcome to nit-pick all you like; the fact remains, you are outnumbered and outclassed by those who have done their research, unpaid, and have decided for themselves, they don’t want rat poison in their drinking water. Dispute and nitpick that fact, now!

  319. #319 Humane Sorrows
    December 6, 2011

    Some more external sources for you:

    “We were unable to discover any reliable good-quality evidence in the fluoridation literature world-wide.”
    http://www.york.ac.uk/inst/crd/fluoridnew.htm

    http://www.nap.edu/catalog.php?record_id=11571

    And specifically,

    Page 102: “Research is needed on fluoride plasma and bone concentrations in people with small to moderate changes in renal function as well as patients with serious renal deficiency. Other potentially sensitive populations should be evaluated, including the elderly, postmenopausal women, and people with altered acid-base balance.”
    http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?record_id=11571&page=102

    Page 130: “More research is needed on the relation between fluoride exposure and dentin fluorosis and delayed tooth eruption patterns.”
    http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?record_id=11571&page=130

    Page 180: “More research is needed on bone concentrations of fluoride in people with altered renal function, as well as other potentially sensitive populations… to better understand the risks of musculoskeletal effects in these populations.”
    http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?record_id=11571&page=180

    Page 204: “A case-control study of the incidence of Downʼs syndrome in young women and fluoride exposure would be useful.”
    http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?record_id=11571&page=204

    Page 223: “Additional studies of the relationship of the changes in the brain as they affect the hormonal and neuropeptide status of the body are needed. Such relationships should be studied in greater detail and under different environmental conditions.”
    http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?record_id=11571&page=223

    “Studies of populations exposed to different concentrations of fluoride should be undertaken to evaluate neurochemical changes that may be associated with dementia.”
    http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?record_id=11571&page=223

    “Studies of populations exposed to different concentrations of fluoride in drinking water should include measurements of reasoning ability, problem solving, IQ, and short-and long-term memory.”
    http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?record_id=11571&page=223

    Page 267: “The effects of fluoride on various aspects of endocrine function should be examined further, particularly with respect to a possible role in the development of several diseases or mental states.”
    http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?record_id=11571&page=267

    Page 303: “It is paramount that careful biochemical studies be conducted to determine what fluoride concentrations occur in the bone and surrounding interstitial fluids from exposure to fluoride in drinking water.”
    http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?record_id=11571&page=303

    “Epidemiologic studies should be carried out to determine whether there is a higher prevalence of hypersensitivity reactions… studies could be conducted to determine what percentage of immunocompromised subjects have adverse reactions when exposed to fluoride… in drinking water.”
    http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?record_id=11571&page=303

    “The effect of low doses of fluoride on kidney and liver enzyme functions in humans needs to be carefully documented in communities exposed to different concentrations of fluoride in drinking water.”
    http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?record_id=11571&page=303

    Page 338: “Further research on a possible effect of fluoride on bladder cancer risk should be conducted.”
    http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?record_id=11571&page=338

    Now, if anyone feels they would like to take on the research gaps for all the above, from the National Academies of Sciences, they are welcome to do so. However, claiming fluoridation is completely ‘safe’, is deeply unethical until all these research gaps are filled. Until they are, fluoridation should be halted immediately due to these unknown factors.

    And please note, the above review calls for studies to be done down to one milligram per litre.

    (ps. I can’t see fluoridealert in sight! LOL! – but, if you are really interested in learning more about this report, I can’t help myself, http://www.fluoridealert.org/health/epa/nrc/index.html [chuckle!])

    Stick this in your pipes and smoke away! Or perhaps, steam a little? LOL!

  320. #320 Humane Sorrows
    December 6, 2011

    Gray Falcon – mistaken ‘gas for a metal’? What on earth are you ranting on about? Some generalised comment; or, are you just nit-picking because you are bored?

  321. #321 Narad
    December 6, 2011

    Tell us all again how NaF doesn’t occur in nature. The thoroughness of your research makes me quiver with anticipation.

  322. #322 Humane Sorrows
    December 6, 2011

    Gray Falcon – mistaken ‘gas for a metal’? What on earth are you ranting on about? Some generalised comment; or, are you just nit-picking because you are bored?

    Prometheus – scary names don’t bother me (though your comment is very condescending – I am guessing you must be a toxicologist, with how you are assuming to know all about fluoride?).

    No, what definites’scares’ me, is ignorant, arrogant folk, inflicting their poisonous minds and actions, on the innocent. Stay out of MY water, as I didn’t want, don’t want, and never will want, your inflictions. And personally, if my teeth rot due to too much sugar and poor dental habits, that is my business (though all fillings I do have – poisonous mercury amalgam that I’ve slowly been replacing from a poor dentist I once had; the cavities formed despite over 30 years of drinking and ingesting fluoride, and an excellent healthy diet – this S7 IS corrosive to everything, and does NOT work).

    But, if you wish to debate Scientifically, or Ethically, cut out the sarcasm, and give us all your written Scientific response to Professor Paul Connett’s book, The Case Against Fluoride.

    Until you read the book and write your responses, whilst you are on this forum attacking those who have read the book, you are showing your shilldom, ignorance, arrogance and not much more – as far as I can see, very few of you have answered direct questions or research – just diverted away to small-minded pettiness.

    There are bigger men out there than most on this forum, doing their best to protect the vast majority of people – those that are unable to defend themselves from Big Industry corruption.

    I can see by your sarcasms, many of you are terrified you might lose your jobs IF someone tests your research, as humanity finally IS WAKING UP to the fraud of water fluoridation, aka, silicofluoride poisoning of our water supplies. Cheers, Humane.

  323. #323 Narad
    December 6, 2011

    Until you read the book and write your responses, whilst you are on this forum attacking those who have read the book, you are showing your shilldom, ignorance, arrogance and not much more – as far as I can see, very few of you have answered direct questions or research

    Wow, at least MJD had the poetry. Let’s see… direct questions, direct questions…. Oh, yeah, what happened to this joint?

    Heavy metals ACCUMULATE, even in tiny amounts (since when did any heavy metal be ‘healthy’ or safe’ to ingest?) – these build up in the body. Disease rates in Australia are through-the-roof, rampant.

    Fourth-highest what expectancy in the world, again?

    (In other news, yes, Nature also knows how to make H2SiF6 all by her lonesome, right where you’d expect it.)

  324. #324 Gray Falcon
    December 6, 2011

    You kept talking about “heavy metals” when our discussion was about fluoride, also, you explicitly tried to convince us that fluoride compounds were equivalent to fluorine gas in 255, which suggests gross incompetence or dishonesty. Your pick.

  325. #325 Humane Sorrows
    December 6, 2011

    Gray Falcon – If you are responding to my comment #322 or, any of my other comments, personally, I have never mentioned ‘gas’. And if I personally mentioned heavy metals, it was (in context), mentioned alongside water fluoride compounds, as per the FOI documents given in the link here: http://sapphireeyesproductions.blogspot.com/ ie. heavy metals ARE found in the mix, along with water fluoridation chemicals.

    Comment 255, is another person. I suggest you stop calling me a liar, and grossly incompetent when I have not been with my comments. Get your facts right if you are going to say such things, as you show yourself to be truly, small, when wrong (but of course, will you apologise? Might be a big ‘big’ of you). cheers, Humane.

  326. #326 novalox
    December 6, 2011

    @(in)humane sorriness

    You definitely have provided some good laughs for me with your through incomprehension of basic chemistry, physiology, biology, basic reading comprehension, and lack of logic.

    Thanks for the unintentional comedy.

  327. #327 Humane Sorrows
    December 7, 2011

    novalox – glad you liked my postings…. but, specifics would be best.

  328. #328 novalox
    December 7, 2011

    Laughing…so….hard…. at (in)humane……..
    sorriness….idiocy….need…to…breathe….

  329. #329 Humane Sorrows
    December 7, 2011

    Novalox, you must be a ‘big’ man indeed, to laugh so hard at my efforts. Sources to your knowledge of my lack? Your credentials?

  330. #330 Humane Sorrows
    December 7, 2011

    Falcon Gray – “You kept talking about “heavy metals” when our discussion was about fluoride, also, you explicitly tried to convince us that fluoride compounds were equivalent to fluorine gas in 255, which suggests gross incompetence or dishonesty. Your pick.”

    Firstly, I think you’re confusing my post with someone else’s above, re: Gas.

    However, to re-state MY POINTS:

    – The most widely-used fluoridation chemicals are sodium fluorosilicate (NaSiF); and fluorosilicic acid (HSiF). Both pro and anti sources acknowledge this.
    http://www.health.vic.gov.au/environment/downloads/fluori_qa07.pdf (p. 9)
    http://www.fluoridealert.org/chemicals-in-fluoridate-water.aspx

    – These chemicals contain fluoride and other toxic contaminants, which I don’t believe should be added to water supplies in ANY AMOUNT.
    http://www.nteu280.org/Issues/Fluoride/flouridestatement.htm

    – These chemicals are industrial-grade, scrubbed from pollution control devices. So, they are literally industrial, hazardous waste products from industrial chemical companies.
    http://www.orica-chloralkali.com/index.asp?page=19
    http://www.incitecpivot.com.au/products_1.cfm

    – Health authorities, water authorities and the chemical manufacturers have been unable to provide adequate long-term health studies to prove the safety of these chemicals.

    These are my points in a nutshell.

  331. #331 Narad
    December 7, 2011

    Some more external sources for you:
    [...]
    http://www.nap.edu/catalog.php?record_id=11571

    And specifically, [a 13-course copypasta degustation]

    Overlooked in this case of explosive quotarrhea is the simple observation that none of appears to really be apropos to fluoridated municipal water supplies at 0.7-1.2 mg/L. Oh, and as for this bit,

    And please note, the above review calls for studies to be done down to one milligram per litre.

    The relevant remark is

    The following research will be useful for filling those gaps and guiding revisions to the MCLG and SMCL for fluoride….

    • Studies of enamel fluorosis
    — Additional studies, including longitudinal studies, should be done in U.S. communities with water fluoride concentrations greater than 1 mg/L. These studies should focus on moderate and severe enamel fluorosis in relation to caries and in relation to psychological, behavioral, and social effects among affected children, their parents, and affected children after they become adults.

    Fluorosis. That’s it, not the unqualified grab-bag that H.S. happily attempted to insinuate.

  332. #332 Common Sense
    December 7, 2011

    http://jdr.sagepub.com/content/53/2/246.full.pdf+html

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/12/101215121918.htm
    Perhaps these links may help those who are wavering in their belief that “hydrofluorosilicic acid” is good for teeth. I do know we get ours from the chimney stacks of our fertiliser industry and it tears my skin about. I buy in drinking.cooking water, cannot afford whole house filter. Which is the problem for many people, we have to suffer the consequences.

  333. #333 novalox
    December 7, 2011

    Eeyup, I’m a bigger man/woman than (in)humane sorriness, that’s for certain.

    At least I know that fluorine isn’t a metal. That was an utter hoot.

    Your continual unintentional humor amuses me.

  334. #334 lilady
    December 7, 2011

    “– Health authorities, water authorities and the chemical manufacturers have been unable to provide adequate long-term health studies to prove the safety of these chemicals.

    These are my points in a nutshell.”

    @ Humane Sorrows: I read your first link “Water Fluoridation Questions & Answers” published by the Victoria, Australia government. The report you provided is replete with long-term health studies that PROVE the safety of these chemicals in the water supply.

    So, just because you have skewed thinking processes and a lively imagination about “conspiracies” regarding the role of government in public health initiatives…what, pray tell, makes you an expert?

  335. #335 lilady
    December 7, 2011

    I also perused Humane Sorrows second link to FAN (Fluoride Action Network) which is a crank anti-fluoride website run by Michael Connett…the son of Sorrow’s academia guru Professor Paul Connett. (Craziness doesn’t run in that family…it gallops)

  336. #336 Narad
    December 7, 2011

    These are my points in a nutshell.

    It’s amazing that you managed to expand this into four wordy items when you have exactly two points: (1) FLUORIDE IS TEH EVILZZ! (2) AND TOXINZZZ!

    Get over yourself. You hate water fluoridation, realize that almost nobody will take you seriously if you present this in its naked form, and thus tart it up with random blab about anything else scary-sounding you can lay your hands on.

  337. #337 Darryl Turner
    December 7, 2011

    This is how the proponents of fluoridaion work.

    http://www.dentalwatch.org/fl/opposition.pdf

  338. #338 lilady
    December 7, 2011

    Quite an interesting link that you provided, Daryll Turner.

    I suppose “Sorrows” is the newly elected chapter president/media director of the Fluorophobics Society…hence the necromancing comments here.

  339. #339 Humane Sorrows
    December 7, 2011

    The TGA in Australia has never approved ‘fluoride’ for human consumption. Write to them yourselves – this task has already been done by other researchers in Australia – there is no data, anywhere, of longterm safety; or, approval for human consumption. See: http://dianabuckland.webs.com/nosafetydatafl.htm

    As for me – you have attempted to ridicule me personally, which is most unprofessional, no matter which side you are on. Whatever. Your scorn, won’t change the facts of the matter of S7 as a poison none of us can avoid – it is in everything made with, tap water (dosage cannot be monitored, and fluoride concentrates when boiled).

    However, know this: you lot, worldwide, are in the minority now – that is why fluoridation is falling so fast in the USA – people do not wish to be dosed with S7 industrial waste, no matter how you spin it.

    Attempting to denounce those who have done the Science, are researching the Science and uphold Science, will overcome all those upholding the chemical companies who act as if they have the God given right to continue to pollute the water supplies, the environment and all life that comes in contact with these poisons, without penalty.

    So, from me, you will hear no more – you are not worth my time. But a good thing to come out of this forum is, you have just shown all who are reading, the kind of people you are – and I’m sure I don’t need to say a single thing more — you’ve done that task quite nicely, all by yourselves, without my further comment.

    But one last reminder: you ‘pro fluoridites’ are still to complete the simple request of 1) firstly, reading Professor Connett’s book, and 2) write a Scientific review on that book.

    Until then, not reading, but denouncing, would get you kicked out of any Uni in the world. Funny how here, on this forum, you act like you’re the ‘big men’, but in truth, are little boys, who have yet to do their research on a single book. And people look up to you?? How very, very, sad.

    So for me, no more laughs will I give you (I hear a collective sigh of relief). Find another person to deride, without substantiating the evidence you are given, and requested to give. Bully boys, you will always be. Pseudo Scientists, you ARE. You will take those qualities with you, to your graves.

    I’m sure you will continue to destroy life by upholding, like some golden egg of magical powers, the silicofluoride poisons that corrode all they touches – including human soft tissue, and, teeth funnily enough).

    And let’s just forget the suffering of animals too, whilst you’re at it:

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2010/02/23/2827687.htm?site=ballarat

    Cheers, it’s been fun. Out. Humane Sorrows

  340. #340 lilady
    December 7, 2011

    “Until then, not reading, but denouncing, would get you kicked out of any Uni in the world. Funny how here, on this forum, you act like you’re the ‘big men’, but in truth, are little boys, who have yet to do their research on a single book. And people look up to you?? How very, very, sad.

    So for me, no more laughs will I give you (I hear a collective sigh of relief). Find another person to deride, without substantiating the evidence you are given, and requested to give. Bully boys, you will always be. Pseudo Scientists, you ARE. You will take those qualities with you, to your graves.”

    Sexist…I’m not a big man acting as a little boy…or a bully boy. I also never attended Google U…from whence you get all your education and I was never kicked out of university, either.

    I hope our discussions here didn’t contaminate your precious bodily fluids and perhaps they penetrated your anti-intellectual brain barrier.

    Try and get a life, first by getting an education so that you can begin to understand what real science is about and drop the attitude.

    Your last post about kangaroos being affected by industrial waste is a gem…it filled in my conspiracy bingo card.

  341. #341 herr doktor bimler
    December 7, 2011

    Humane Sorrows at #322:
    fluoridation is banned in most other countries in Europe and China

    I am pretty sure that even in parts of Europe where fluoridation is not mandatory, it is not actually banned and you are free to fluoridate your own water if you choose.

    Stay out of MY water
    Here’s the problem. You are living in Australia, an arid country where there are way too people living than the environment can possibly sustain. Consequently, tap water in cities like Melbourne must be treated to make it drinkable. Making the water drinkable is part of the public-health responsibilities of the municipal, state and federal governments, because without treatment it would be someone else’s urine from up-stream. You with me so far?

    What I’m saying is that the water is NOT YOURS. If you want your own water, collect feckin’ rain-water. Otherwise, shut the feck up.

    Another of the public-health responsibilities of the various governments is to minimise the money they spend on dental health. To this purpose, they have done various cost/benefit calculations and decided to add fluoride salts to the water supply.

    If you want them to change that policy, show them better calculations. Failing that, offer suggestions as to who will pay the bills for higher dental-health expenses. But stop complaining about “YOUR water”, because if it comes out of a tap then it’s communal water and subject to communal cost-minimising decisions.

  342. #342 trish
    December 7, 2011

    most of the scienceblogs are great. but
    one look at your little bio tells me all I need to know about your inflated sense of yourself…what pretentiousness:
    “nom de blog (please!)of a (not so- obviously) humble pseudonymous surgeon/scientist (gotta put in surgeon- though surgeons are really nothing more than vastly over-payed skilled techs of a sort with giant egos, often with severe social deficiencies) with an ego just big enough to delude himself that someone, somewhere might actually give a rodent’s posterior about his miscellaneous verbal meanderings (can you put in a few more carefully crafted words- god, this is nauseating), but just barely small enough to admit to himself that few will (yeah, right- NYT?.”
    Look at the history of fluoride- how it ended up in our drinking water. Less about public health than (once again) government working as corporate hacks.

  343. #343 Gray Falcon
    December 7, 2011

    Tell me, does repeating a claim make it true?

  344. #344 Lawrence
    December 7, 2011

    Says the internet troll of a dedicated Cancer Surgeon & Researcher with a couple of decades of work behind him…..wow.

    Would love to see a list of your qualifications….but somehow I don’t think that’ll happen.

  345. #345 novalox
    December 7, 2011

    So (in)humane sorriness left? I was enjoying the antics of the uneducated clown, but I guess all things must come to an end.

    At least I had a few good laughs at his/her/its expense.

  346. #346 Heliantus
    December 7, 2011

    fluoridation is banned in most other countries in Europe and China

    Don’t know about China, but in Europe, fluoridation is indeed not done in water. Sodium fluoride is added to table salt.
    Doesn’t look like “banned” to me.

  347. #347 Chris
    December 7, 2011

    trish:

    Look at the history of fluoride- how it ended up in our drinking water. Less about public health than (once again) government working as corporate hacks.

    I have. It was in the ground water in Colorado, and was causing children to have Colorado Brown Stain on their teeth. But was also noticed by Dr. McKay is that they had much fewer cavities.

    It naturally occurs in ground water in many parts of this planet. As I said before, some municipal water suppliers actually remove some fluoride to a level that protects teeth, but does not cause Colorado Brown Stain (dental fluorosis).

  348. #348 Narad
    December 7, 2011

    The brave demander of answers to direct questions got on its huffalump and rode of without providing answers to direct questions? I’m shocked.

  349. #349 Narad
    December 7, 2011

    Just for the record, H.S.’s “external sources” post is a direct lifting from here. This is lazy enough, cherry-picking quotes from the end-of-chapter summaries, but if H.S. isn’t Zalec, it’s really lazy.

  350. #350 herr doktor bimler
    December 7, 2011

    Look at the history of fluoride- how it ended up in our drinking water.
    Some sources say that the idea of fluoridating water was partly inspired as a way of using a by-product of the aluminium industry. In itself, this wouldn’t a strike against it. The field of organic chemistry started out as a search for uses for the by-products of the coking industry.

    So technocrats in local authorities around the world looked at the evidence, discounted any press releases from industries, and found it convincing enough to pay for the water additive.

    Except people like Trish @ 342refuse to believe that the officials were convinced on the evidence, and maintain that they were “government working as corporate hacks”; also maintaining that they themselves are NOT CONSPIRACY THEORISTS. They merely have theories. About a conspiracy. And it is purely a coincidence that the anti-fluoridation campaign began with the John Birch society, epicentre of “The Paranoid Style in American Politics”.

    Humane Sorrows: So, from me, you will hear no more

    A pity. I had hoped for clarification of the Libertarian principle that it’s “MY water”, which local authorities have an obligation to purify and supply in exactly the form of purity that Humane Sorrows prefers.

    I also enjoyed the claims to be driven purely by altruistic concern for the innocent children, interspersed with sneers at the stupidity of children who are too poor to follow Humane Sorrows’ own virtuously healthy diet.

  351. #351 Narad
    December 7, 2011

    And, given that H.S. was flopping around over at David Icke’s forum trying to get people to show up here, I’ll note that, sure enough, it’s on the chemtrail bandwagon. And the Illuminati. And mind control through pop music. Katy Perry has something to do with MK-Ultra. Etc.

  352. #352 NJ
    December 7, 2011

    Narad @ 351:

    Katy Perry has something to do with MK-Ultra.

    I thought it was the Trilateral Commission. Damn! I’m always a week behind on the memos!

  353. #353 VikingWarriorPrincess
    December 7, 2011

    “fluoridation is banned in most other countries in Europe and China”

    The corner of Northern Europe where I live is an anomaly then since fluoridation isn’t banned here. We’ve got enough of it naturally occurring in the ground water so we don’t need to add any, in some places they even have to remove fluoride since the levels are a bit too high.
    And to add to the horror when I was a kid we used to get visits every second week by a dental nurse that distributed fluoride dental wash. The school was collaborating with Big Chemical and Big Dental to poison all the kiddies!!!OH NOEZ!!!!elebenty!!!!

  354. #354 Militant Agnostic
    December 7, 2011

    Narad @352 – Don’t worry about it. They all just front groups for the Masonic Communist Underpants Lizards.

  355. #355 MI Dawn
    December 7, 2011

    My parents have a place in northern Michigan. When they drilled the first well, the water had such a high iron content, we were told not to drink it, and they had to drill deeper. Yeah, natural water is just SO safe…

    I recall one friend whose parents had problems with their well; when tested it showed very high arsenic levels (natural). They had to also drill another well, and had a very difficult time getting water good enough to drink. I don’t recall the exact story, as we were kids, just that they had to live in a hotel for a while as the water was considered so unsafe and I was jealous as I’d never been in a hotel!

  356. #356 Krebiozen
    December 7, 2011

    Human Sorrows,
    In case you are still here, I am referring to the link you posted at #250 which is to analyses of 20% hydrofluorosilicic acid concentrate that is added to Adelaide tap water at a dilution of 1 in 200,000 to achieve a fluoride concentration of 1 mg/L.

    this is not some ‘mistaken’ interpretation. AND, where, anywhere, is there a written ‘comparison’ to the EPA standards? ?? WHAT? Where? You are making this stuff up now.

    It is most certainly a mistaken interpretation. Your safety levels are a factor of 200,000 out! Work it out for yourself, or refer to the safety levels on the right hand side of the analysis sheets you link to which refer to the EPA safety levels (or Australian equivalent) multiplied by 200,000 to account for the dilution factor. Or divide the concentrations of mercury, lead etc by 200,000 to get the concentrations that will end up in tap water, and compare them with the EPA safety standards.

    As I have repeatedly explained, the hydrofluorosilicic acid is a 20% concentrate that is diluted 1 part in 200,000 parts of water. You, or someone, have compared the undiluted concentrations of lead, mercury etc in the concentrate to the safety levels for tap water, which is a huge, and very serious mistake. How can I explain this any more simply? It’s not my fault that someone has grossly misinterpreted this information, whoever they are. The very least you could do is acknowledge the error and put it right instead of indignantly accusing me of making it up!

    You might as well accuse the water company of trying to kill everyone with poison gas because the chlorine gas they put in the water would kill you if you inhaled it neat before it is diluted in the water.

  357. #357 Robert G
    December 11, 2011

    “Dilution is no defense.” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JkRUlHrjz8s

  358. #358 Chris
    December 11, 2011

    And youtube videos are not scientific evidence.

  359. #359 NJ
    December 11, 2011

    Robert G @ 357:

    “Dilution is no defense.”

    But mental illness is. A good thing, in your case.

  360. #360 Krebiozen
    December 11, 2011

    “Dilution is no defense.”
    In Canadian law perhaps not, but in common sense it is.

    Mercury, lead and arsenic concentration in Adelaide tap water have been within EPA limits for the past 5 years, according to Humane Sorrows’ figures. Doing a bit of math using the same figures I find that less than 10% of the mercury in Adelaide tap water is due to fluoridation. Less than 1% of the lead and arsenic is due to fluoridation. The large majority of it is natural, or perhaps from industrial pollution, which might be a cause worth getting excited about. Given the safety margins added to the EPA limits, I still don’t see why you guys are worried.

  361. #361 Anonymous
    May 1, 2012

    First, I would like you to say thank you for opening up comments and leaving it open. You guys have guts.

    Secondly, Fluoride is the worst. It’s the same toxicity as lead, it’s used in rat-poison, it’s a waste and it’s added.

    So basically, this report is bogus.

    There’s no proof of naturally occurring fluoride either. It’s all talk and no proof. I know how bad fluoride is because I swallowed it before when brushing, and apart from headaches, I felt like crap, like depression, but feeling heavy and cramps and pain in my back and my body. Tropically is understood (like in toothpaste, dentist products, things that can be brought and can be chosen), but if it’s forced without a real investigation, then it’s bogus. Obviously the best thing to do is just to find alternatives.

    There’s no safe level, I repeat, no safe level.

The site is currently under maintenance and will be back shortly. New comments have been disabled during this time, please check back soon.