Fluoride debate: Arguments Against Fluoridation Thread. Part 8. Paul

This is Paul Connett’s response to Ken Perrott’s last article Fluoride debate: Response to Paul’s 5th article

For Paul Connett’s original article see – Fluoride debate Part 1: Connett.


Ken’s response to my last posting once again is incomplete and evasive. Let me review what has happened here.

Ken was asked to present the case FOR fluoridation. After four attempts Ken has produced very little science to support such a case.  In part 6 of this thread I laid out what I felt would be the necessary components for such a scientific case and asked some very specific questions in the hope that Ken would present that case.  Ken’s response has been disappointing

Ken’s response in part 7 of this thread

Apart from further discussion on the theoretical mechanism of fluoride’s topical mechanism of action, a few citations on benefits, more criticisms of the opponents of fluoridation and more discussion on the ethical arguments Ken failed to present many primary scientific studies to support the case for fluoridation. Instead, he either ignored the questions I posed, was evasive or sought to obfuscate the key issues I presented. This meandering response may satisfy Ken’s urge to demonstrate his general distaste for opponents of fluoridation in NZ (based on the emails I have received this distaste cuts both ways) but it does not advance his scientific case for fluoridation one iota.

Instead of making a serious or even good faith effort to address the scientific questions I posed he attempted to dismiss my whole effort by claiming that I was unfairly throwing the kitchen sink at him (my words). His own words were new to me. He described my series of specific questions as follows,

 “It’s a real Gish gallop – suddenly demanding answers about arthritis, kidney function, thyroid function, osteosarcoma, individual sensitivity to fluoride, menstruation, effect on babies, monitoring bone concentrations and finally, all or any health concerns in New Zealand. Without any background to any of the issues.  (Wikipedia describes Gish gallopers as using ‘a rapid-fire approach during a debate, presenting arguments and changing topics quickly’). “

As far as Ken’s claim that I have failed to present the background to my questions he is wrong on two counts. First, I have raised several of these issues before in one or both of our threads – thus there is nothing sudden about many of these questions. Second, plenty of background was laid down on all of the issues in our book The Case Against Fluoride, a pdf copy of which was sent to Ken over a month ago.

If Ken was more familiar with the literature he would have known that the response to each question I posed was not difficult at all.

One sentence on most of these questions would have sufficed, for the simple reason that incredibly NO (or very few) studies on these topics have been undertaken in NZ or other fluoridated countries like Australia, Canada, Ireland, Israel, the US or the UK. More specifically:

1) There have been NO attempts to investigate arthritis rates in fluoridated communities in NZ or other fluoridated countries, even though it is known that the first symptoms of fluoride poisoning of the bone are identical to arthritic symptoms. I have given citations to some of these studies.

2) There have been NO attempts to investigate a possible relationship between fluoridation and an earlier onset of menstruation in young girls or puberty in boys in fluoridated communities in NZ or other fluoridated countries, even though there is some evidence that this maybe occurring (Schlesinger et al., 1956) as well as Luke’s work on the pineal gland (Luke, 1997, 2001).

3) Neither NZ nor any other fluoridating country has attempted to investigate the issue that some individuals report increased sensitivity to fluoride even though independent observers (e.g. Taves, discussed in chapter 13 of our book) and one governmental organization (Australia’s NHMRC, 1991) have recommended that this sensible measure be undertaken. Ken does not acknowledge this and misses the point by attacking the studies and numerous anecdotal reports that have waved “red flags” on this issue.

4) There have been NO systematic or comprehensive efforts by government health agencies to monitor the fluoride levels in the urine, blood or bones of any fluoridated community in NZ or any other fluoridated country.  Australia’s NHMRC in 1991 recommended bone levels be collected as a basis for epidemiological studies on fluoride’s impact on the bone but no attempt has been made there in the 22 years that have elapsed since this recommendation was made; nor in NZ.

5) There has been NO published study refuting Bassin’s finding of an age-related window of vulnerability (ages 6 through 8) for young boys being exposed to fluoridated water and succumbing to osteosarcoma. The promised study (Kim et al, 2011) miserably failed to refute this finding despite the promises made in 2006 that it would do so.

6) There has been little or no attempt to see if the current epidemic of hypothyroidism in NZ and other fluoridated countries has anything to do with exposure to fluoride even though doctors in Argentina, France and Germany used fluoride treatment to lower thyroid activity in hyperthyroid patients from the 1930s to the 1950s (See Galleti and Joyet, 1958).

7) There have been practically NO studies investigating possible health concerns in NZ possibly associated with fluoridation. Nor have there been attempts to reproduce studies that have found harm in countries with high natural fluoride levels. I was not aware of any studies in NZ other than a small IQ study from the 1980s but I thought it wise to find out if Ken knew of any. But he didn’t respond. I also asked him if he felt the absence of study was the same as the absence of harm but again he didn’t respond.

8) There have been a number of studies on teeth in NZ and other fluoridated communities as if this was the only tissue of concern in the baby’s developing body or of concern for adults with lifelong exposure. Ken has still yet to discuss the wisdom – or otherwise – of exposing a bottle-fed baby to about 200 times the level of fluoride that nature intended (0.7 ppm in fluoridated water versus 0.004 ppm in mothers’ milk).

9) In short. While the NZ government has poured over $1 million into the NZ Fluoridation Information Service, which is little more than a PR operation for fluoridation, they have taken little or no steps to fund any primary studies to see if this practice is harming anyone in NZ.

More Broad-brush dismissals

On the issue of fluoridation’s effectiveness Ken attempts to use the same broad-brush dismissal of the citations I offered in support of my case that evidence for swallowing fluoride reduces tooth decay was very weak. Ken responded:

“So, I am not impressed by Connett’s paragraph of about 30 unexplained citations – nor by a long reference list at the end of his article.”

I am baffled as to why he should describe these citations as “unexplained” when I made it clear that the citations were all discussed in three chapters of our book (chapters 6-8).  Ken had already explained that he had read up to chapter 9 in our book so his claim that the citations are unexplained is rather sloppy. As far as the number of citations is concerned it would be more understandable if Ken was complaining about my giving too few citations, not too many!

I ask the reader to consider for a moment, which is more convincing – my extensive list of references to the literature which suggest the ineffectiveness of fluoridation or the very sparse list of references provided by Ken which he claims support the effectiveness of fluoridation. However, at least he gave some references here; he gave none on the health concerns I raised.

Instead of responding scientifically – or at least conceding that the science has not been undertaken – Ken chose to either ignore or obfuscate most of the scientific issues I raised in the following ways:

1) His response is very familiar. He chose to attack the messenger and ignore the message. From Ken’s perspective there is nothing wrong with the practice and promotion of fluoridation – it is Paul Connett and other opponents of fluoridation who are the problem!

2) Really substantial issues I have raised are being ignored, in some cases for the second and even third time of asking. For example where are his comments on the

a) difference between dose and concentration;

b) the need for a margin of safety analysis when extrapolating from the doses that cause harm in animal and human studies and

c) the need for a weight of evidence approach to the scientific literature on this subject.

 3) Where Ken does address an issue his response has often been evasive and clouded with obfuscation. For example see his response to my reasonable scientific request for a list of studies that negate or balance out (i.e. weight of evidence analysis) the long list of studies that indicate that fluoride can damage animal brain and interfere with human behavior and intellectual development. His response was to classify such a request as “the IQ gambit” and to bring up the distraction of “Hitler using fluoride to control prisoners” when he knows full well that I have disowned such claims in public and in writing. See for example, these quotes from our book:

“It is true that a few people who oppose fluoridation do so based on claims that Nazi Germany and other totalitarian regimes used it as a method of mind control. There is little evidence that would satisfy a historian to support such claims. The vast majority of fluoridation opponents repudiate such views and base their opposition on science and ethics.” (pp. 256-7)

and

“Two speculations we reject outright are that fluoridation is (1) some sinister plot to“dumb down” the population or (2) part of some worldwide plan to reduce the size of the global population.” (p.258)

4) Thus, Ken has still to present a substantial case FOR fluoridation based upon the citation of primary studies.

5) Unfortunately, he is leaving it to others to present some of his case in the comments section. I made it clear to Ken when we discussing the format of this debate that I was not interested in these kind of blog comments which become very personal and sometimes insulting. I thought we had agreed that this was going to be a scientific exchange between the two of us. I am not prepared to sift through the insulting chaff in the comments section to get to the scientific wheat.

Someone has forwarded to me a recent personal attack on me by Steve Slott, DDS:

Steve Slott | December 19, 2013 at 1:40 pm |

You got it Stuart. Sarah Palin epitomizes the antifluoridationist. Being totally oblivious to her own ignorance she just blusters along, totally bewildered as to why she gets no respect from the mainstream.

Forgive me for straying off topic, Ken, but the most frustrating thing about antifluoridationists is their ignorance, and their total oblivion to it. Somebody like Connett comes along with just enough education and charisma to come across as being an “authority” on the issue, yet totally lacking understanding of basic facts, far overestimating of his own knowledge, and convinces the blind followers who crave any and all anti-authoritarian causes, that the establishment is corrupt, ignorant, and lacks the “knowledge” that only he possesses through his “study” of new “emerging science “. Being totally unaware that what is “new science” to him is nothing more than basic knowledge of which the true experts and authorities have long since been aware and have fully addressed, he blusters forward confident that he has the “truth” on his side. The worldwide body of respected healthcare is either “corrupt “, conspiracy laden, or ignorant of the “facts” that he is trying his utmost to bring to their attention. Dentists are running the fluoridation show, yet are all dumber than doorknobs and totally lacking in any knowledge of the human body outside of the portions of the teeth that are visible above the gum line, and decision makers are all unwittingly manipulated by big money interests. The people to whom he plays buy into his spiel, lock, stock, and barrel, thus becoming in their own minds far more knowledgeable about the issue than the dumb dentists, corrupt mainstream healthcare, and unwitting politicians who are stripping away personal freedoms and poisoning everyone in the process. Portland and Wichita are poster-children for the chaotic circus side-show that he creates by convincing a very active, very vocal, very ignorant few, of the “validity” of his own ignorance.

Steven D. Slott, DDS

Ken you are the moderator of the comments posted on your website, can you explain to me how this comment contributes to the science of this debate? Can you explain to me why you allow this kind of personal attack on your opponent – completely unrelated to any scientific argument that I have raised – to be part of the visible record on this matter? Just what purpose does it serve other than to muddy the waters and poison the minds of any independent observers?  Surely such a posting has no place in a debate that is supposed to be about the science of this controversial issue.

Now I will address some of the issues on which Ken offered a response.

1) On Randomized control studies (RCT).

 I complained that after 68 years no government promoting fluoridation has undertaken an RCT to demonstrate effectiveness. This is the gold standard in epidemiology. In response , Ken suggests that I should have done an RCT of my own!

As far as safety is concerned I agree that you cannot prove a negative, however such an argument neither explains nor excuses the lack of responsible attention to health concerns by fluoridating countries.  The absence of study on many very important health concerns is inexcusable and cannot be explained away with rhetoric.

2. The ethical argument.

 Ken claims that opponents of fluoridation merely focus on the violation of informed consent and ignore the social benefits of the program. However, that line of argument assumes that:

 a) such a benefit actually exists (and Ken hasn’t presented much of a case for that yet);

b) that very little – if any -risk is involved (Ken hasn’t presented much primary evidence to support that);

c) that the benefits greatly exceed the risks (not possible unless Ken has produced a strong case for both a) and b) which he has not;

d) that there are no practical and cost effective alternative social strategies which avoid the violation of the individual’s right to informed consent. In this respect it is very disappointing that Ken has yet to comment on the successful program being used in Scotland to fight tooth decay in children from low-income families there. Nor has he reviewed any of the other programs being used in the vast majority of European countries that don’t force people to drink fluoridated tap water.

 I would also hope that at some point Ken would address the Precautionary Principle as it applies to the ethics of this issue (see chapter 21, in The Case Against Fluoride…)

3) Does tooth decay go up when fluoridation is halted?

 In two of the four studies I cited (from Cuba, former East Germany, Finland and British Columbia) where tooth decay did not go up when fluoridation was stopped, Ken says that other measures were taken in two of those communities (Cuba and former East Germany). That’s a good point. However, it undermines his argument that water fluoridation is the only way to go as far as fighting tooth decay is concerned. If these communities have found alternative methods why aren’t fluoridating governments studying these alternative methods? Again I refer to the successful and cost-effective program with children in low-income families in Scotland.

 It is not clear if Ken believes that alternative methods were applied to explain the results in Finland and British Columbia.

In personal correspondence I have had with Rudolf Ziegelbecker, Jr., from Austria, who has studied this matter (and his father before him) for many years, he maintains that there has been no increases in tooth decay in any of the European countries that have stopped fluoridation.  Is Ken aware of any evidence to the contrary?

 4. Does fluoridated water deliver a significant topical benefit over and above that delivered by fluoridated toothpaste?

 I notice that Ken twice combines discussion of fluoride’s topical exposure via water and via food. He states:

 “So fluoride concentrations in saliva after drinking water or eating food containing fluoride can be quite variable.”

“Fluoride concentrations in saliva and plaque do reach a maximum after drinking water and eating food containing fluoride…” 

This is interesting because it goes back to my original skepticism about drinking fluoridated water doing much of anything in the oral cavity before it goes down the gullet – that is unless one swishes. On the other hand I can understand that any fluoride present in food is going to be made readily available to both the tooth surfaces and the saliva during the chewing of food and therefore may participate in the theoretical mechanisms that Ken discusses.

If, in fact, this mode of delivery (i.e. via food) is the relevant one then Ken would do better either a) to recommend making fluoridated salt available to those who want it in NZ or b) recommend that parents tell their children to swish the fluoridated water in their mouths before they swallow it. But there we are back to education again, and that is something that Ken wishes to avoid. We are also back to the potential harm from swallowing fluoride.

Beyond theoretical mechanisms

Whatever the theoretical mechanism for fluoride’s action (and I will leave it to the specialists in this field to fight that out), as a promoter of fluoridation, Ken still has to demonstrate that the weight of evidence from epidemiological studies indicates that there is a significant benefit from drinking fluoridated water over and above the use of fluoridated toothpaste. I don’t think he has done that.

He has also yet to explain why it is in the largest surveys there appears to be little difference in tooth decay in the permanent teeth between fluoridated and non-fluoridated communities, states and countries (see chapter 6 in The Case Against Fluoride…), with the one possible exception of the comparison between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland, that Ken has cited.

In short, in the majority of the large surveys the relationship between tooth decay and the presence or absence of fluoride in the drinking water does not appear to rise above background noise. However, the relationship between fluoride levels and dental fluorosis certainly does rise above background noise (see chapter 7 in The Case Against Fluoride…) as does the inverse relationship between tooth decay and income levels (see chapter 6 in The Case Against Fluoride…).

Nor has Ken addressed the fact that in the only study that has looked at tooth decay as a function of how much fluoride children were ingesting (from all sources) there was no significant relationship between the amount of fluoride ingested on a daily basis and the level of tooth decay (Warren et al, 2009).

Although the late Dr. David Locker was not opposed to water fluoridation, he did have the integrity to admit in the review of dental studies worldwide, which he performed for the Ontario government in 1999, that:

 “The magnitude of [fluoridation’s] effect is not large in absolute terms, is often not statistically significant, and may not be of clinical significance.”

My final challenge to Ken.

 Ken I have patiently tried to debate the scientific issues with you but apart from your interest in bioapatites and the theoretical mechanism of fluoride’s actions (both interesting subjects but insufficient to demonstrate the wisdom of forced fluoridation) I believe that you have offered little in the way of science to support the case for fluoridation. Meanwhile, as moderator you are allowing insulting and personal attacks on me by people like Steve Slott to be posted as part of this exchange. I am happy to engage in a rational scientific exchange on this issue but not happy for it to be an excuse for an unscientific attack on my integrity.

I would like to extend you one more shot at demonstrating that there is convincing primary scientific evidence, which shows:

 1) That the weight of evidence of the primary studies indicates that drinking fluoridated water provides a large and significant benefit to the permanent teeth.

 2) That the weight of evidence of the primary studies indicates that there is an adequate margin of safety to protect everyone drinking fluoridated water and getting fluoride from other sources from damage to the developing brain documented in areas of moderate to high natural levels of fluoride. Note: that margin of safety should protect for the bottle-fed infant.

 3) My preference would be for you to do the same with other health concerns that I have raised including those where we need to protect someone consuming uncontrolled quantities of fluoridated water over a whole lifetime – but if it simplifies matters for you, then for now I will settle for you just tackling the impacts on the brain (i.e. 2 above).

 4) That the benefits you demonstrate in 1) outweigh the risks I have presented in my book and in these threads.

And that the case you present in 1-4 is so strong that it justifies:

 a) overriding the individual’s right to informed consent to human treatment.

b) overriding the Precautionary Principle

c) ignoring the fact that there are alternative ways of fighting tooth decay which are universally available – and the successful programs that are reducing tooth decay in children from low-income families in countries like Scotland and most of the rest of Europe without forcing this practice on people who don’t want it.

As far as the Scottish program is concerned we can add a few more bones to the BBC report I included earlier. This is how my colleague Dr. Bruce Spittle summarized the situation in Scotland:

Instead of water fluoridation, the newly devolved Scottish Government opted, in its 2005 dental action plan (their Childsmile program), to pursue:

a) school-based toothbrushing schemes;

b) the offering of healthy snacks and drinks to children;

c) oral health advice to children and families on healthy weaning, diet, teething and toothbrushing;

d) annual dental check-ups and treatment if required, and

e) fluoride varnish applications  (The Scottish Government, 2005; Macpherson LMD et al., 2010; Turner S et al., 2010; Chestnutt, 2013; Healthier Scotland, Scottish Government, 2013).

Encouraging results have been reported from this national dental programme with the proportion of children in Primary 1 (aged 4–6 years) without obvious dental decay rising from 42.3% in 1996 to 67% in 2012 (Information Services Division  Scotland, 2012).

Similarly, the proportion of children in Primary 7 (aged 10–12 years) without obvious dental decay rose from 52.9% in 2005 to 69.4% in 2011 and 72.8% in 2013 (Information Services Division Scotland, 2013).

The introduction and uptake of nursery school toothbrushing is likely to have contributed to a large extent to the improved oral health in five-year-old Scottish children (Macpherson, 2013).

I know these are tough challenges but they are the kind of challenges that should have been tackled years ago by government agencies promoting the unusual (and I say unacceptable) practice of using the public water supply to deliver human treatment. But they weren’t. But for those who continue to support this practice like you the tasks above have to be addressed.

If you are not prepared to attempt this challenge in good faith then I will end my participation in this exchange forthwith.

Paul Connett,

Dec 22, 2013

References:

Bassin EB  et al. (2006). “Age-specific Fluoride Exposure in Drinking Water and Osteosarcoma (United States),” Cancer Causes and Control 17, no. 4: 421–28.

Connett, P., Beck, J and Micklem HS. The Case Against Fluoride. Chelsea Green, White River Junction, Vermont, 2010.

Galletti P. and G. Joyet (1958). “Effect of Fluorine on Thyroidal Iodine Metabolism in Hyperthyroidism,” Journal of Clinical Endocrinology 18, no. 10: 1102–10.

 Healthier Scotland, Scottish Government, NHS Scotland (2013). Childsmile: home, parents and professionals. Available from: http://www.child-smile.org.uk/sitemap/index.aspx

Information Services Division Scotland, NHS National Services Scotland (2012). National Dental Inspection Programme 2012 Report. Available from: https://isdscotland.scot.nhs.uk/Health-Topics/Dental Care/Publications/2012-11-27/2012-11-27-DentalNDIP-Summary.pdf?27395266295

Information Services Division Scotland, NHS National Services Scotland (2013). National Dental Inspection Programme 2013 Report. Available from: https://isdscotland.scot.nhs.uk/Health-Topics/Dental-Care/Publications/2013-10-29/2013-10-29-NDIP-Summary.pdf?27395266295

Jones CM, Woods K, Taylor GO (1997a). Social deprivation and tooth decay in Scottish schoolchildren. Health Bull (Edinb) 55:11-15.

Kim FM et al. (2011). “An assessment of bone fluoride and osteosarcoma.” J. Dent. Res 90(10): 1171-6.

Locker, D (1999). Benefits and Risks of Water Fluoridation: An Update of the 1996 Federal-Provincial Sub-committee Report, prepared under contract for Public Health Branch, Ontario Ministry of Health First Nations and Inuit Health Branch, Health Canada (Ottawa: Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care, 1999.

Luke, J, 1997, “The Effect of Fluoride on the Physiology of the Pineal Gland,” PhD thesis, University of Surrey, Guildford, UK, 1997. Excerpts at http://fluoridealert.org/studies/luke-1997/ and a complete copy of Dr. Luke’s dissertation can be downloaded at http://www.fluoridealert.org/wp-content/uploads/luke-1997.pdf  (with the author’s permission).

Luke, J, 2001.  “Fluoride Deposition in the Aged Human Pineal Gland,” Caries Research 35, no. 2 (2001): 125–28.

Macpherson LMD, Ball GE, Brewster L, Duane B, Hodges C-L, Wright W et al. (2010). Childsmile: the national child oral health improvement programme in Scotland. Part 1: establishment and development. Br Dent J 209:73-78.

Macpherson LM, Anopa Y, Conway DI, McMahon AD (2013). National supervised toothbrushing program and dental decay in Scotland. J Dent Res 92:109-113.

McMahon AD, Blair Y, McCall DR and Macpherson LMD (2010). The dental health of three-year-old children in Greater Glasgow, Scotland. Br Dent J 209:E5. doi: 10.1038/sj.bdj.2010.723.

NHMRC (1991). National Health and Medical Research Council, The Effectiveness of Water Fluoridation (Canberra: Australian Government Publishing Service, 1991), 109.

NRC (2006). Fluoride in Drinking Water: A Scientific Review of EPA’s Standards (2006) http://www.nap.edu/catalog.php?record_id=11571

Schlesinger ER, et al. (1956) “Newburgh-Kingston Caries-Fluorine Study XIII. Pediatric Findings After Ten Years,” Journal of the American Dental Association 52, no. 3: 296–306.

Warren, JJ et al. (2009) “Considerations on Optimal Fluoride Intake Using Dental Fluorosis and Dental Caries Outcomes—A Longitudinal Study,” Journal of Public Health Dentistry 69, no. 2: 111–15.


Anyone wanting to follow the debate and/or check back over previous articles in the debate can find the list of articles at Fluoride Debate.

See also:

Similar articles on fluoridation
Making sense of fluoride Facebook page

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183 responses to “Fluoride debate: Arguments Against Fluoridation Thread. Part 8. Paul

  1. If Mr Connett is offended by Mr Slott’s opinion, then tough, he should write a poem about it. The forum isn’t a touchy feelly mutual admiration exercise.

  2. And yes folks, he really did say his references have more gravitas because his list is longer.

  3. Ken was asked to present the case FOR fluoridation. After four attempts Ken has produced very little science to support such a case.

    Paul?
    Let me help you with that.

    “Ken was asked to present the case FOR Evolution. After four attempts Ken has produced very little science to support such a case.”

    “Ken was asked to present the case FOR vaccines. After four attempts Ken has produced very little science to support such a case.”

    “Ken was asked to present the case FOR germ theory. After four attempts Ken has produced very little science to support such a case.”

    Instead, he either ignored the questions I posed, was evasive or sought to obfuscate the key issues I presented.

    Oh you horrid little liar.
    You Gish Galloped. Ken did not respond to your Gish Gallop.
    That’s all there is to it.

    First, I have raised several of these issues before in one or both of our threads – thus there is nothing sudden about many of these questions.

    Why ask “many” questions at all? It’s called Gish Galloping.

    Second, plenty of background was laid down on all of the issues in our book The Case Against Fluoride….

    Nobody gives a dry turd about your book.
    Try to put your own self-promotion to one side.

    If Ken was more familiar with the literature he would have known that the response to each question I posed…

    “Each question”
    It’s called the Gish Gallop. Deal with it.
    When someone accuses you of Gish Galloping then it’s really simple.
    Don’t ask “each” question or “many” questions.
    Just ask one.
    A child could understand it.

    I ask the reader to consider for a moment, which is more convincing – my extensive list of references to the literature which suggest the ineffectiveness of fluoridation or the very sparse list of references provided by Ken which he claims support the effectiveness of fluoridation.

    Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha. :)
    Richard’s on the money.
    Paul is actually pointing to his list of references and going “See? SEE?? My list is longer. How convincing that is.”
    It’s not possible to parody such deranged thinking.

  4. Stuart Mathieson

    There is more than enough evidence from hundreds of studies and publications the demonstrate that F- ions are effective topically and fluoride ions in town water supplies that have low natural levels is a safe and effective way of delivering it.

    Additionally relentless logic tells us that a mineral that has always been available naturally for ingestion is unlikely to be toxic at appropriate levels.

    A glance at the link below reveals the game the anti F- fraternity are playing.

    http://books.google.co.nz/books?id=wGBQGDP9Kt4C&pg=PA92&lpg=PA92&dq=Alan+Musgrave+on+Lewis+Carroll&source=bl&ots=5P8f3Y3d7q&sig=nW1cm4mpzOeBOcRWqAtwKWJDed0&hl=en&sa=X&ei=fHS6UrDmIcXPlAWBvICYBw&ved=0CCgQ6AEwAA

    Whatever evidence you quote they will turn it into (and the conclusion that results), they will turn it into a hypothesis that doesn’t stand on its own.

  5. Saw this comment of Fluoride Free NZ Face book page:

    “Ken (who moderates all comments) has allowed people to post all sorts of nasty things attacking Paul’s character rather than discussing fluoridation. Now, even though this is pointed out in Paul’s article, Ken has allowed a really terrible, disgusting comment from someone called Cedric Katesby to be posted. I know Ken has also not allowed many comments from Paul’s supporters.”

    Not sure what it refers to – any idea Cedric?

    grapes

  6. Stuart Mathieson

    Paul and Bill. Endless recapitulation is not science, it’s scientific posturing for an audience that knows no better. I am familiar with enough of them. It’s so-called scepticism on global warming, or evolution. These are people who place faith above science and believe in miracles.

  7. Stuart Mathieson

    I cant believe the inanity of the comments on Fluoridefree.net. I know one or two of these people, university educated, qualified (retired) psychiatrists. You would think they would have a handle on madness wouldn’t you? Mind you also Sea of Faith which suggests a propensity (long discredited) that refuses science the ultimate authority.

  8. Stuart Mathieson

    The idea is to con the readers into thinking groundbreaking science is happening under their very noses and they are participating in a significant way even though they wouldn’t know the difference between hyper and hypo and frequent confuse the two. 

  9. Nice try, but no, Andy, I am not going to approve that comment. You are just attempting to cause trouble and in effect are in cahoots woith Mary Byrne’s attack.

  10. Stuart Mathieson

    Another trick they have is selectively copy and paste our comments to their little bubbles so they can paint pro F- folks as evil evil evil.
    I don’t think we should worry about that too much. After all a fair number of these people think flying saucers can travel from Alpha Centauri to Earth orbit in say, less than a week. Go figure!

  11. Stuart Mathieson

    Isnt Andy the climate change denying idiot from ChCh that was outed for writing under a whole host of nondeplumes some time ago. The one that wears a rediculous hairpiece? If that isn’t duplicitous I don’t know what is.

  12. I couldn’t possibly comment on the hairpiece.

  13. Isnt Andy the climate change denying idiot from ChCh that was outed for writing under a whole host of nondeplumes some time ago.

    Perhaps one day he will tell the truth and let us all know how many and which ones he fabricated. It would also be interesting to know what he though he was achieving by doing so.
    This is Andy Scrase getting all foamy.(The Daily Currant finale made it especially worthwhile).

  14. Ken has allowed a really terrible, disgusting comment from someone called Cedric Katesby to be posted.

    I take it these people don’t get out much?

    Let’s see….
    Called him a horrid, little liar with reference to the Gish Galloping nonsense.
    Check.
    Nobody gives a dry turd about his book.
    Check.
    Laughed at him for bragging about the size of his…references.
    Check.

    Yet this apparently got her knickers in a twist?
    Wierdo.

  15. Stuart Mathieson

    I s’pose I shouldn’t have said that. But after most of my working life in IT much of it in management and sales I can tell you it attracts narcissists like crazy, especially among the backroom boys. Most of the software that came down the stairs was a celebration of someone’s ego and incomprehensible to everyone else.

  16. Guys, it is best to lay off Andy. Not fair to discuss him when he is excluded and I don’t want to let him into the discussion because he can be so disruptive and provocative.

    >

  17. I wonder how many get sucked in by Connett’s first points (1-7), where he laments lack of studies associating fluoride with a list of ailments.

    It is an absurd argument. He frames it as if a lack of investigation into alleged association is justification for ceasing fluoridation, if not proof of causation itself.

  18. Stuart Mathieson

    Fair enough Ken.
    I’ll just ignore them. But the science is pretty much settled so that only leaves speculation about the motives for disputing the science, science they KNOW is settled. Ken, neither you nor anyone else has to justify the fluoride over and over. If they submitted them to a recognised journal they would simply be returned wouldn’t they?

    We ought to discuss the tactics. I have it on good authority their supporters have been given exclusive access to councillors to spin their tripe. Councillors having other things in mind don’t have time or inclination to run Independant checks on the literature. If they trot along with a petition signed by 450 halfwits they’ll cave!

  19. Stuart Mathieson

    The only place Mary Byrne gets published is Investigate Magazine.

  20. <Investigate Magazine

    Is Ian Wishart anti F?

  21. Stuart Mathieson

    Whatever sells mags. They claimed MV Rena was secretly owned by Mosad! How weirder does it get? Probably a phone call soon corrected that.

  22. Stuart Mathieson

    Same sort of people. Religious fundamentalists.

  23. Good idea tactics….would be good if we had F here in ChCh too

  24. Dr. Johnny Johnson

    Paul,

    It is quite interesting that you choose to attack the messengers of the credible information here, Steve Slott, & Ken Perrott. You chose to do the same with me in recent fluoridation challenges in the United States. You have also chosen to attack the messenger in Ireland, Dr. Joe Mullen, head of The Irish Expert Body on Fluoride and Science. Similarly, you chose to ignore the California Carcinogen Identification Committee that heard your charge that fluoride was a carcinogen (Proposition 65) when they listened to your testimony, along with that offered from true credible scientists They concluded that fluoride is NOT a carcinogen.
    http://www.ada.org/news/6533.aspx

    It may not bode well with you that respected scientific groups choose to hear your testimony and give the appropriate weight to it by dismissing it in toto, but facts are facts. The information that you present has been dissected 7 ways from Sunday for its credible scientific basis. The simplest of he facts are that you can not accept that your arguments don’t stand up to critical scientific validation. The most recent of these arguments was FAN staff member’s, Bill Hirzy to thwart fluoridation. His petition to the EPA was dismissed on solid scientific grounds.

    I appreciate your willingness to engage in dialogue with Ken in this forum. It does allow us all to better understand each other’s lines of reasoning.

    Johnny

  25. I just want to offer my thanks to Paul for including my comment in his latest promotional piece for his $25 per copy “book”, disguised as a response to Ken. The more exposure the better. I stand by every word of it. If he doesn’t like it…..wow, I’m just heartbroken.

    Paul, if you want to be taken seriously as a researcher, then do some valid research. If you want to understand healthcare, then go to medical or dental school. Citing your own non peer-reviewed “book” as evidence to support your claims is ridiculous beyond words.

    This latest commentary from Paul is nothing more than a meaningless rehash of the same “arguments” he’s been attempting for years.

  26. Kurt Ferre DDS, Portland, OR USA

    Bravo, Dr. Slott. My question is, “If Paul doesn’t have time to go through all the comments, how did he find yours, Steve?”

  27. Stuart Mathieson

    Kurt.
    I see you are from Portland O. My friends love your famous unipiper.

  28. Kurt, Paul has been in regular contact with his mates in New Zealand who passed on the information. They have also been climbing out of their tree over a comment made by Cedric.

    Personally, I think they have been unhappy about this exchange from the beginning and were advising Paul to withdraw anyway. The comments are an excuse.

  29. Vinnie, the chap conspiracy theorist, who initiated the debate, has been notable by his lack of participation in the comments.

  30. That’s a point.

    Can’t say I have missed him.

    Anyway, I have sent him a Facebook message to see of we can attract him.

    >

  31. Stuart Mathieson

    Vinnie – multiple pseudonym stirrer (sociopath)?

  32. Stuart Mathieson

    I remember when teachers used to teach us in Primary schools on healthy diet, personal hygiene, iodised salt etc. I wonder if there’s a place for science based education policy on oral hygiene including fluoridation and it’s history (including attempts to discredit it)?
    I don’t know but I’ll will check out my grandchildren’s schools. I was surprised to discover there are many people who no longer understand the need for trace elements in our food chain such as selenium and iodine. I imagine there will be hostility from some quarters were are familiar with. But if it isn’t education policy maybe the science community should be doing some lobbying. We’ve got a PhD in Dunedin North. Might pay him a visit.

  33. “Cedric Katesby”, we would love to see you over at the “Making Sense of Fluoride” facebook page. Maybe you could even schedule in a live discussion with Connett if you have the chance? See you soon.

  34. Hayden, do you have the ability to organise live discussions with Paul? No, of course not.

    You are another Walter Mitty who gets a kick out of challenging people to debates but are unwilling to participate in any discussion yourself.

    I would have thought you would have learned that such challenges only make you look a fool. You don’t have the ear to Connett that the conspiracy theorist Vinny Eastwood who arranged this current debate does. And I suspect that as Paul has bailed out of this exchange he does not want to get burned again so soon – even if you did have his ear.

    For the benefit of other readers here, Hayden is a troll who abuses and pesters people on the Making Sense of Fluoride Facebook page. He has obviously decided to attempt the same here. I challenge him to participate sensibly in discussion here – but I am not holding my breath.

    >

  35. Stuart Mathieson

    I’ve discovered the quintessential archetype of these denier twerps. A vindictive little bastard called Hunter Moore who resides in his parents basement in Sacromento. Google him and recognise the type.

  36. Maybe you could even schedule in a live discussion with Connett if you have the chance? See you soon.

    Claim CA340:
    “Evolutionists are unwilling to debate creationists.”

  37. Stuart Mathieson

    As you know I accept the case for fluoride is well and truly proven. I also believe the denial and contrarian postures know it as well. The real issue there, and here, is what then is the agenda? It may sell a few books but I think the issue is ideological. 

    The following quotation from an article in Alternet pretty much sums the ideology up. Here’s the passage and the complete link to the full article. 

    “But it seems even clearer that a “libertarian” in today’s political environment is almost always someone who ascribes to certain core philosophies: He abhors government, hates taxation, and is hostile to collective action on behalf of the less fortunate. Name any prominent modern libertarian—Ayn Rand, Paul Ryan, Ron Paul, Peter Thiel, Rand Paul—and they are likely to fit this description.”

    http://www.alternet.org/what-america-would-look-if-libertarians-got-their-way? akid=11325.278504.l_CFb3&rd=1&src=newsletter941183&t=6

  38. Oh Cedric, it would be nice to see you over at the “Making Sense of Fluoride” facebook page. Maybe you need a checkup of your intellectual faculties. You’ve make a logical fallacy of straw man, so it’s totally apparent that you’re a hypocrite and not qualified to discuss forced fluoridation. Logic and science seem to be too much for you Cedric, but a nice friendly chat on the M.S.O.F page may be able to help you on your way. See you soon over there “Cedric”. Or is that “Ken” ?

  39. You’ve make a logical fallacy of straw man….

    Strawman? You didn’t mention a strawman before.

  40. Kurt Ferre DDS, Portland, OR USA

    One can learn about an individual by who he or she associates with. One
    associate of Dr. Connett’s is Alex Jones. Dr. Connett has appeared on Jones’ TV/radio show several times.
    Alex Jones (radio host) – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alex_Jones_(radio_host
    And check out this video to see what a wack-job, Alex Jones is. If you are gay, beware!

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/01/21/alex-jones-gays-government-chemicals_n_2520280.html

    “Mainstream sources have described Jones as a conservative and as a right-wing conspiracy theorist. Jones has been the center of many controversies, and has accused the US government of being involved in the Oklahoma City bombing and September 11 attacks.

    Below is the “new” product called Fluoroshield. Have your barf bucket nearby and grab a pint to replenish your bodily fluids whilst you enjoy this video. The good parts begin around 4:50 minutes.

  41. Kurt Ferre DDS, Portland, OR USA

    I’d also like to add that Ed Group is a whack job, too. Just Google him.

  42. The guy being interviewed, Dr Ed Group…
    He has has a variety of degrees from many established institutions including a Doctor of Chiropractic (DC) from Texas Chiropractic College, a Naturopathic Physician (ND) degree from the Natural Healing Institute of Naturopathy, an Alternative Medical Practitioner (AMP) certification from the American Alternative Medical Association, and more.

    …………and more!

  43. Stuart Mathieson

    Kurt!
    You’ve done the folks out here a signal service by giving us these vivid examples of where the lunacy originates. I for one will be passing this stuff onto Dunedin mayor and councillors some of whom have been subjected to heavy lobbying.
    Thanks again.

  44. I thought we were debating F, obviously mistaken,

  45. I thought we were debating F, obviously mistaken,

    Not for the first time Ian, not for the first time.

  46. Yes, you are easily mistaken Ian

  47. It’s pretty much your thing, Ian.

  48. I’d also like to add that Ed Group is a whack job, too. Just Google him.

    (…googles…)

    Damn. It’s hypnotic. It starts off bad an then gets much, much worse so very quickly.
    It’s….
    Wow.

  49. Stuart Mathieson

    F- doesn’t need debating but the psychology of deniers does.

  50. yep dealing with a few of science deniers

  51. yep dealing with a few of science deniers

    Could you translate that into English?

  52. So is anyone here actually going to answer the questions posed by Paul or are you all so afraid of being shown up to have no answer that all you can do is throw insults… This is how school children behave.. you all need to put your big boy pants on and grow up, this is an important issue.. Kindly provide the requested research and safety studies and the evidence that proves that the results outweigh the risks and while we are at it, please provide some evidence that shows tooth decay to be such a life threatening public health emergency that its ok to violate my rights

  53. Kindly provide the requested research and safety studies and the evidence that proves that the results outweigh the risks and while we are at it, please provide some evidence that shows tooth decay to be such a life threatening public health emergency that its ok to violate my rights.

    (shrug)

    Kindly provide the requested research and studies and the evidence that proves that evolution is real.
    Kindly provide the requested research and studies and the evidence that proves that the Apollo Missions to the moon were real.
    Kindly provide the requested research and studies and the evidence that proves that the dangers of smoking tobacco is real.
    Kindly provide the requested research and studies and the evidence that proves that the efficacy of vaccines is real.

    The burden of proof. It will not shift.

    The burden of proof

  54. Lissa, there is mountains of evidence.
    Just because you haven’t bothered to look doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist.
    CDC (Center disease control and prevention) website is a reasonable place to begin, plenty of links to get you started.

  55. Hi Lissa,

    Big Boy Pants!
    Is this why you chose not to participate? …
    You could’ve/can jump right on in, anytime.
    Got something specific to say?

    Too busy putting on your Big Girls pants I suppose….

  56. Stuart Mathieson

    Lissa obviously hasn’t bothered to read the exchanges or the links sprinkled through this forum. No one is going to respond to Paul’s requests item by item because they won’t have any effect and hell just repost his “challenges” differently worded interminably. It’s obvious from the blogs your name crops up in you are just another “enthusiast”.

  57. I dont particularly care if you can prove its safe or not, if it works or not.. No one here can prove that tooth decay is such a public health threat to warrant the violation of my right to consent to treatment. My dentist can not give me a fluoride treatment against my will or without my consent. What makes it ok for the government to do it? A government body who is not qualified to administer such a treatment, a government body how has no clue of my dental needs, a government body who has no clue of what my daily dose is and a government body that can not and does not monitor my fluoride accumulation so that they know when my body has reached a toxic load level. But of course they can give me an unapproved drug (FDA) for the prevention of tooth decay without my consent and without informing me of the risks and side effects…. I dont care if its the best and safest treatment available.. the only point in this whole debate is that it is treatment against my will and no government.. NO GOVERNMENT has that right… ever, at all for any reason…. PERIOD

  58. Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results is a useless exercise. No doubt Paul Connett has better things to do with his time then continue to waste it battering his head on Ken’s brick wall.

  59. Doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results is a useless exercise. No doubt Paul Connett has better things to do with his time then continue to waste it by battering his head on Ken’s brick wall.

  60. Kindly provide the requested research and safety studies and the evidence that proves that the results outweigh the risks and while we are at it…

    But later…

    I dont particularly care if you can prove its safe or not, if it works or not..

    Make up your mind. Which is it?
    Or are you so scatty that you just contradict yourself out of habit?

    But of course they can give me an unapproved drug (FDA)…

    No.
    You need to stop being so gullible.
    Putting fluoride in the water is not giving you an “unapproved drug”.
    (…shakes head sadly at the stupid…)

    On the other hand, if you really believe that then…sue.
    Grab a lawyer and sue ‘em.
    Think of the skads of money you’d make off “them”.
    Think of the innocents you would stalwartly protect.
    International fame and hero status are waiting for you!
    Please. Do it.
    I’m sure that Attorney Deal fellow that was hanging around here would love represent you (pro bono of course).
    Do it.
    No time like the present.

    Put up or shut up.

  61. Stuart Mathieson

    It’s not a drug and what makes you think reticulation of water belongs to you? That was provided by a consensus decision of your community and you derived a benefit from it. Part of that social contract is the acceptance of the water subject to community agreed terms. You can always opt out in a number of ways. Further more you have no God given right to dicatate terms to others in your community. Your argument amounts to free riding. The community provides a Good, you dictate terms that degrades the full benefit to others. Buy a water tank and make a deal with God for rainwater and treat it yourself.

  62. Stuart Mathieson

    You could also drill for your own water but if the aquifer was contaminated by others, fracking contamination or other pollutants, you would have to seek personal redress. Your local community might also have issues with you drawing on a resource they are using and you might have issues disposing of your own waste water. You see if you want to accept the benefits of social and community life, you cannot disregard the social and community terms for that participation.

  63. Stuart Mathieson

    Your argument Lissa is predicated on the notion that we are all irreduciably, absolutely and essentially autonomous individuals. This is in fact a myth. We are irreduciably social animals and are accorded a degree of autonomy in restricted ways from inherited tradition and group consensus (by various political mechanisms). None of us would exist today in our present condition if it wasn’t for centuries of social and collective interaction. The individualistic myth is a relatively recent development and resulted from the Protestant Reformation and was a political and ideological response to the hegemony of the Church of Rome. Following that the Enlightenment could see the collective benefit of a degree of intellectual and political autonomy (casting votes for example) and certain choices within our individual lives, but these are by no means absolute (in spite of Thomas Hobbes and John Locke) and are frequently restricted in times of danger or if social harms become unacceptable and threaten the viability of the community. This is why appointed bodies and legal frameworks are established to direct the rules of the road and quality and treatment of shared resources such as reticulated water. Waste water is also subject to controls. The community even deems it it’s responsibility to dictate certain terms on the conditions within your household and the way you care for your children. That includes I would suggest ensuring their needs for education, health and other welfares including oral health which science tells us has vast implications for their life prospects. If, as an “informed” adult, you choose to opt out of these community arrangements don’t assume you can do so at a cost to others in the community.

  64. Reticulation of water was provided by engineers and plumbers and is something that is part of an advanced society. Many people on this planet do not have reticulated water, however.

    The term “plumber” is derived from the Latin “plumbum” which means lead. Originally, lead was deemed suitable for pipes for carrying water, presumably due it its malleability. Of course, the scientific consensus now is that lead piping is bad for human health, even though we retain the word plumber in common usage.

  65. Very well written, and enlightening Stuart.

    Lissa…”NO GOVERNMENT has that right… ever, at all for any reason…. PERIOD”

    So, would you lie to discuss this any further in a rational sense?

    And to put your mind at ease, I won’t mock, abuse or ignore you.

  66. Lissa, you ask a question, it is answered in good faith and then you turn around and announce you aren’t interested in any answers to the question at all.

    I wonder if you have any comprehension of how stupid and ill mannered that makes you appear.

    Now, it’s time for you to slink off to your cabin and bunker in the woods and count your ammo against the day that will surely come, when the noise of the black helicopters will wake you in the night.

  67. Stuart Mathieson

    “Reticulation of water was provided by engineers and plumbers and is something that is part of an advanced society. Many people on this planet do not have reticulated water, however.”

    Correct, that is why they share wells and streams and (usually) take pains to ensure its quality. Modern science (and philanthropy) has come to the aid of those communities. The WHO for example (quelle horror shades of Agenda 21!) has financed treated water schemes. In many third world countries iodised salt is available. This has done much to alleviate cretinism and hypothyroidism (nudge! nudge!). Positive and beneficial interventions are happening all over the planet. More could be done. This would be a great task for sceptics. There are various expense paid schemes available. VSA would do for a start or ring your nearest UN office. If you can’t do it do some fund raising. The Google machine will find many worthy causes.

  68. Wow, you troll profiles “Stuart Matheson”, “Richard Christie”, and “Stuart Atkinson” really have no science or ethics to support you. Having to resort to ridicule just proves it. Thanks for the mirth, and again confirming the stereotype of the typical fluoride pusher. If you have the capability to identify an intelligent argument for forced systemic fluoride treatment please refer me to it. I haven’t seen one yet. $20 prize, paid by me, to the first person who can provide one. Clearly it won’t be one of your comments, just refer me to one you find. (not necessarily on this blog).

  69. Thanks for the suggestions Stuart but I don’t have time for VSA or similar. However, a local tramping club (Geraldine) recently did some excellent work in Nepal installing some reticulated water in a village. They were some older Lions Club members who seem to do a lot of good work locally and overseas.

  70. Chlorine is put in the water too.
    It’s child’s play to take the anti-fluoridationist arguments and then enlist them in the service of “anti-chlorination”.

    Chlorine is dangerous.
    Chlorine is toxic.
    Yep, chlorine can kill you stone cold dead.
    True is that.
    Even used as a chemical weapon.
    (Scary, huh?)
    So….what’s it doing in our tap water?
    Why is “de gubbimnet” putting a chemical weapon in the water of our helpless babies blah, blah, blah…

    Well, there’s this little thing called cholera and typhoid fever and dysentry.
    Forget your history and you are doomed to repeat it.

    Science denial is the same.
    That’s why Peter is oh-so-shy about his stance on vaccination.
    That’s why there’s a stash of kooks with an oddball assortment of links to homeopathy, anti-GMO, chemtrails, HIV denial coming out of the woodwork on this anti-fluoridation issue. Check out their websites. Read the comments they make here. It’s all on display.

    Science denial comes in clusters because the logic, the paranoia and the methodology is the same.
    The scientific response of a supporter of science is the same too.
    More worky-worky, less talky-talky.

    Horrible History – Dr John Snow

  71. Wow, you troll profiles “Stuart Matheson”, “Richard Christie”, and “Stuart Atkinson” really have no science or ethics to support you.

    Hayden is observationally challenged. He hasn’t been following the play. It’s not “you troll profiles”, it’s every scientific and dental health community on the planet and countless public health authorities who support the scientific consensus on water fluoridation: as being a of safe and effective tool toward promoting good dental health and wellbeing.

    Now, don’t run away Hayden, the same challenge goes out to you, name a single scientific community that rejects this consensus.

  72. Hayden,

    Don’t be scared jump right in if you have something to say…
    And if you want to seriously argue the ethics of water fluoridation – I would love to!!

    As for your prize…(If you are referring to water fluoridation), I will quote Lord Upton in a judgment from the Highest Court in NZ (at that time);
    Attorney-General ex relatione Lewis and Another v Lower Hutt City – [1965] NZLR 116

    “At first instance the action came before McGregor J. and he examined the evidence with meticulous care. At one stage of his judgment he said this: “I have heard considerable evidence in the matter and I must say at the outset that I have never hitherto experienced evidence more impressive and cogent than that of the defendant establishing that it is, to use a neutral expression, most desirable that fluoride should be added to the water”

    So…Hayden, I know you are waiting with baited breath for the most impressive and cogent argument a High Court judge has ever experienced…and this argument was followed, yes FOLLOWED by a Law Lord meticulously.

    I will let the gravity of this statement sink in…

    (That $20 is mine, mine I say, I excitedly say)

  73. (I should’ve said referred to, not followed)

    Hayden, sunk in?

    The finest legal minds in the UK and Commonwealth, including of course NZ (at that time)

    …this must be an intelligent reason/argument…

  74. Hayden,

    You said;

    “If you have the capability to identify an intelligent argument for forced systemic fluoride treatment please refer me to it”

    Now…I object to the word “forced” but to be fair, we have to use YOUR definition as you made the rules here.

    I assume you mean fluoridation of public water supplies?

    Yes?

    So technically you already owe me $20 as I have already “identified an intelligent argument for (public water) systemic fluoride treatment”

    (You didn’t actually ask for the argument, you only said identify it….)

    Want my bank acct no?

  75. Ah, I can’t help myself…here it is…

    “”In the present case I was satisfied on the evidence (1) that there is a high incidence of dental caries in New Zealand generally, (2) there is almost a complete absence or at least a high deficiency in the fluoride content of the natural artesian well water supply of Lower Hutt, (3) that the absorption of fluoride has a substantial effect in reducing the in-cidence of dental caries especially in young children, (4) there are no deleterious or toxic effects on the human body from the absorption of fluoride more emphatically in the minute proportion of one part to a million, (5) that any surplus fluoride taken into the body is excreted without harmful effects, and (6) that tablets or other vehicles for the taking of fluoride are unsatisfactory in that the required regularity with children would not be achieved and that natural water is the only really satisfactory vehicle”

    Attorney-General ex relatione Lewis and Another v Lower Hutt City – [1965] NZLR 116

  76. Stuart Mathieson

    I see that Andy. Very good. I’ll mention it to our club. OTMC. We have members who would contribute funds.

  77. Hi Stuart
    You can read a bit more abut the Geraldine Nepal project here
    http://www.stuff.co.nz/timaru-herald/news/8073989/Group-back-from-Nepal-aid-mission

    Anyway, that’s enough for 2013, best to leave on a positive note

    Happy New Year to everyone here

  78. Thanks for your attempt “Christopher Atkinson”, however an appeal to authority full of factual errors, omissions, unsubstantiated claims, cherry picking and complete disregard for ethics does not constitute a convincing or intelligent argument. Further, it was hardly independent, coming from a government employee. Number (5) is an outright lie. Number (6) is a source of mild amusement, mainly due to the varying fanciful hypotheses sometimes provided in attempt to explain it.

  79. Stuart Mathieson

    Don’t bother responding Christopher to Hayden. His is simply a troll throw away. Even the anti fluoride sites acknowledge kidneys deal adequately with all but significantly elevated and of course toxic levels. They use that acknowledged fact to argue that poor kidney function won’t cope with fluoride. I would have thought fluoride would be the least of your worries if your kidneys were not too good. But this is typical. They use piecemeal arguments to conceal contradictions.

  80. Thanks for your attempt “Christopher Atkinson”, however an appeal to authority….

    Oops, Hayden doesn’t know what Appeal to Authority means.

    Google it. Find out what it means and how to correctly apply it. Read the fine print.

    (Hint: It’s not an Appeal to Authority to to get your teeth fixed based on the say so of…your dentist.)

  81. Let me clear a few things up. I didnt make the first request on my own behalf. I was speaking to the issue of this debate, one which was supposed to be about the science. Im personally not interested in the science. I was merely suggesting that Ken, if he claims has science on his side, actually put that science up instead of continuing to go off track. Just put the evidence up and it is all done with. It was not a request on behalf of myself. Im surprised that most of you failed to realise that. My second comment was my personal stand on the science of fluoride because it seemed obvious that once again, no one was going to post the science. Why continue down that line when none of the pro-fluoride team will produce it, but instead just try to dodge it. Hopefully that clears it up for you all.

    Im very surprised to see that the majority of pro-fluoride people on this discussion seem to be communists and don’t think the individual rights of a human being is an important part of a free society. Never really considered that pro-fluoride people were actually anti-human rights people until this eye opening discussion. And before you all go crying, communism places Social rights above individual rights.. something that you have all been touting… think about that and make sure that is the ideology you wish to represent.

    To anyone who claims that fluoride is not a medicine let me educate you just a little. There are many types of medicines listed in every country’s Regulatory bodies data base, two of the main ones are 1) Medicines, this is all of your pharmaceutical type medications. 2) Complimentary Medicines, this is everything else that is beneficial to health like vitamins, minerals, herbs, aromatherapy and homoeopathic products etc.

    With regard to complimentary medicines every single regulatory body in every free democratic country states in their regulatory guidelines that: “how a substance is presented to the public determines whether it will be treated as a food or a medicine.”

    “A clove of garlic is a food. However, if it is concentrated and marketed in capsule form with claims that it can be used to relieve cold and ‘flu symptoms it will be treated as a medicine. A product’s principal use is of primary consideration when determining whether it is a food or a medicine.” Therapeutic Goods Administration Australia. This is also stated in the MHRA regulations in the UK, the FDA regulations in the USA, and the list goes on. Look it up, every country has this determination in its regulatory acts/legislation.

    The TGA also goes on to clarify that: In relation to the evaluation, assessment and monitoring done by the TGA, therapeutic goods are broadly defined as products for use in humans in connection with:
    -preventing, diagnosing, curing or alleviating a disease, ailment, defect or injury
    -influencing inhibiting or modifying a physiological process
    -testing the susceptibility of persons to a disease or ailment
    -influencing, controlling or preventing conception
    -testing for pregnancy

    This includes things that are:
    -used as an ingredient or component in the manufacture of therapeutic goods; or
    -used to replace or modify of parts of the anatomy

    They also go on to explain: A complementary medicine is defined in the Therapeutic Goods Regulations 1990 as a therapeutic good consisting principally of one or more designated active ingredients mentioned in Schedule 14 of the Regulations, each of which has a clearly established identity and traditional use:

    Designated active ingredients
    1. an amino acid
    2. charcoal
    3. a choline salt
    4. an essential oil
    5. plant or herbal material (or a synthetically produced substitute for material of that kind), including plant fibres, enzymes, algae, fungi, cellulose and derivatives of cellulose and chlorophyll
    6. a homeopathic preparation
    7. a microorganism, whole or extracted, except a vaccine
    8. a mineral including a mineral salt and a naturally occurring mineral
    9. a mucopolysaccharide
    10. non human animal material (or a synthetically produced substitute for material of that kind) including dried material, bone and cartilage, fats and oils and other extracts or concentrates
    11. a lipid, including an essential fatty acid or phospholipid
    12. a substance produced by or obtained from bees, including royal jelly, bee pollen and propolis
    13. a sugar, polysaccharide or carbohydrate
    14. a vitamin or provitamin

    So, Question: how is fluoride presented?
    Answer: As a beneficial health measure for the prevention of tooth decay.

    Question: And what is its function:
    Answer: As a preventative treatment for tooth decay.

    Question: does it replace or modify parts of the anatomy?
    Answer: yes, it is claimed to strengthen tooth enamel

    Question: does it come under the list of designated active ingredients? Answer: Fluoride is a mineral … So yes to number 8.

    Well that is 4/4 .. its being presented as having a health benefit. Its function is preventative treatment. it modifies the tooth surface and its a mineral… by every guideline and definition it IS a complimentary medicine.

    The question here isnt IF fluoride is a medicinal substance or not, but why the TGA and other regulatory bodies do not have it listed and in the case of the FDA, listed as an unapproved drug but refuse to enforce the rules and guidelines all the rest of them have to adhere to. That in itself tells you that there is serious corruption within the governments of fluoridated countries.

    In queensland our Health Act states that no person can be forced to accept any.. ANY kind of treatment without their consent. Treatment is defined as anything from counselling to surgery, vitamin supplements to chemotherapy. Based on all the criteria, fluoride is a complimentary medicine. It is being used as a health treatment, and that is a violation of Queensland Health law.

    There is no argument on this.. the question is why and how are the government doing this and getting away with it.. well watch this space.. 2014 is going to see some hard hitting realities of law smack our government upside the head.

  82. Lissa, read the articles in the exchange. I have presented quite a lot of the science which shows Paul was wrong or being deceptive. The claim that I haven’t is his debating trick. It is his way of avoiding the points I have made and pretending I haven’t made them. I discussed this at the beginning of my last article.

    I have not gone off track at all – simply refused to restrict myself to Paul’s book as he was demanding.

    You need to read the articles. And if you disagree with my presentation. Of the science, discuss it.

    I think the other issues you have realised have been discussed at length here. Again, read the material.

    >

  83. Stuart Mathieson

    The science is all done and dusted Lissa, and endorsed in court after court. There are enough links scattered through this and other sites
    Don’t kid us you don’t know that. Your just posturing for an audience that couldn’t google their way round a marshmallow. We’re no longer interested in people feigning ignorance or bewilderment. You just like filling in spare moments winding people up. Standard MO for people who don’t have a real job.

  84. Stuart Mathieson

    Ken, we all know given enough drips you can wear away stone. God knows they’ve got enough drips.

  85. “Cedric” / Ken, you’re confused. To quote Chris “I will quote Lord Upton in a judgment from the Highest Court in NZ (at that time)” You appear to need a definition of Appeal to authority. Here it is “In the context of deductive arguments, the appeal to authority is a logical fallacy, though it can be properly used in the context of inductive reasoning. It is deductively fallacious because, while sound deductive arguments are necessarily true, authorities are not necessarily correct about judgments related to their field of expertise. Though reliable authorities are correct in judgments related to their area of expertise more often than laypersons, they can still come to the wrong judgements through error, bias or dishonesty.”

  86. Stuart Mathieson

    The appeal Hayden is to the published and peer reviewed science, not to “names”. Its an appeal to the science and the evidence. That is not fallacious.
    The anti F- arguments however are riddled with fallacies. the biggest fallacy of all is essentialism.
    1) That a mineral or element in any quantity is bad for us.
    2) that people always know what’s good for them (and their kids).
    3) all collective decisions are wrong and Communistic.

    Lissa I suggest you find a definition of Communism. Ring Rupert or Gina, they’ll have one off pat! Now there’s a good Aussie saying. And when are you going to re-legalise shooting Tasmanians Lissa? Or are they all dead already?

    Your stance on fluoride is just one front in the general campaign for Libertarianism. No collective or general welfare policy can be seen to be efficacious. This is just standard T-Party (read John Birch Society) rubbish.

  87. Lissa, might I suggest that you read up on communism, rather than declaring any social endeavour you don’t like to be evidence that people are communists. Wikipedia might be a decent place to start.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Communism

    I, conversely, might decide to label you a Libertarian based on your apparently warped view of what does or does not constitute a violation of your individual or human rights (handy hint: you are not being forced to consume water from the public supply). But then, your political leanings are not, strictly speaking, relevant to such a discussion.

    And let us be perfectly clear that you’re engaging in conspiracy theory style thinking with your insistence that, because you personally believe fluoridated water counts as a medicine and the authorities do not, the only possible explanation for this discrepancy is that the authorities are corrupt.

  88. Chris B, wikipedia was exactly where I got the information on Communism’s social rights vs individual rights. There are many forms of communism that is true, but for the most part, the ideology is that Society’s rights are more important than the individual.. an ideology I do not subscribe to but it seems that pro-fluoride people do. I guess to be technically correct I should of said Soviet Communism, but hey you had to find something to nit pick. Glad I could help give you something to focus on other than the fact fluoridation violates the human right to consent.

    It is also a human right to have access to clean fresh water. Which I do not, neither through the public water supply or through purchasing it. I love how you guys just go off on tangents.. im laughing at the attempt to call me an conspiracy theorist because I believe in informed consent… Im assuming you think the WWII crew were hard done by in the Nuremberg Trials too hey? How tin foil hat of them to actually determine that human beings have rights and no government or agency has the right to violate them… Im pretty sure the U.N would love to hear your stance on human rights. But I guess you just think that the U.N are conspiracy theorists too hey?…

    I do not have to personally think Fluoride counts as a medicine, government agencies around the world have already done that, the FDA has already established it is a drug, the European agencies have already established it is a drug, and by all the guidelines listed in the UK, NZ and AU regulations, it is a medicinal substance. But I digress.. regardless of its status, it doesnt need to be listed as a medicine to still be in violation of Queensland law and international human rights codes. There is to be no TREATMENT without consent … fluoride is a ‘treatment’ and it is occurring without my consent. Its pretty simple really…

  89. Oh and Chris B. If you are suggesting that because I suggest governments are corrupt that makes me a conspiracy theorist… just remember, its not a theory if its true… google government corruption.. its a fairly common practice… not really in the conspiracy theory realm mate.. but nice try.. though it was an ameture attempt at diversion

  90. Stuart Mathieson… which courts are you referring to… The only court case in australia has yet to be finalised so no judgement there. Could you be so kind as to link the court cases you say time after time have proven fluoride to be safe and effective? I have googled and I have not found the search to be fruitful.. actual case references of the cases you are referencing would be even better.. cheers

  91. Hello Lisa,

    Good to see that you’re giving it a go…

    “To anyone who claims that fluoride is not a medicine let me educate you just a little”

    I saw a long winded argument from you attempting to make the case that fluoridated water is somehow regulated by law.

    All of which have been covered before in this blog.

    So…can you please show me in where in Law, fluoridated water is a medicine, drug or otherwise regulated substance? Australian Law will do.

    Please educate me

  92. Hi Lissa,

    You appear not to understand what a Theory is;

    “… just remember, its not a theory if its true…”

    theory (ˈθɪərɪ)
    n, pl -ries
    1. a system of rules, procedures, and assumptions used to produce a result
    2. abstract knowledge or reasoning
    3. a speculative or conjectural view or idea: I have a theory about that.
    4. an ideal or hypothetical situation (esp in the phrase in theory)
    5. a set of hypotheses related by logical or mathematical arguments to explain and predict a wide variety of connected phenomena in general terms: the theory of relativity.
    6. a nontechnical name for hypothesis

    http://www.thefreedictionary.com/theory

    I presume you believe Germ Theory and the Theory of Gravity to be true?

    Lissa, you are obviously passionate about what you believe in.

    And you appear to value education.

    But could I suggest that you please check what you write before pushing the send button?

  93. Thanks Stuart, that explains the word salad at the beginning of his comment.

    I will answer Hayden, if only for my benefit.

    Hayden,

    “If you have the capability to identify an intelligent argument for forced systemic fluoride treatment please refer me to it”

    I satisfied every element/requirement of your wager.

    If you disagree with this, by all means show me which element of your wager I failed to satisfy.

    Now… I can hear the cogs grinding so I will pre-empt you.

    Your wager did not have any requirement that YOU AGREE with the argument.

    No…Nope. None. Zero.

    You see, if you had any sense you would’ve added something like;

    “… identify an intelligent argument THAT HAYDEN ACCEPTS…”

    That would’ve given you the escape hatch you so stupidly are trying to fumble open.

    Secondly, you appeared concerned with the independence of our judiciary.
    Mmm where do I start…I won’t, so just follow;

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Judicial_independence

    But worse still Hayden, you have not specified where this argument should come from.
    If you were clever you would’ve phrased your wager something like this;

    “….. identify an intelligent argument FROM (insert any source you wish)…”

    but alas you didn’t.

    So whether you think, hope, believe or even wish upon a star that I failed to meet your wager, this is well…irrelevant.

    You set the rules. Not me.

    I satisfied all of ‘em.

    Yep. Every…single…one.

    I did this in good faith.

    Now, I’m not concerned with the $20.

    But in lieu of the $20, I will simply accept an admission from you that I satisfied your wager.

  94. Lissa,

    (I apologise for spelling your name incorrectly in a previous post)

    I hope Stuart doesn’t mind answering on his behalf.

    “Could you be so kind as to link the court cases you say time after time have proven fluoride to be safe and effective? I have googled and I have not found the search to be fruitful.. actual case references of the cases you are referencing would be even better.. cheers”

    Firstly Lissa, you have made yet another silly mistake. Stuart didn’t say the courts have proven fluoride to be safe and effective. He said ” The science is all done and dusted Lissa, and endorsed in court after court”

    Get it right!

    The law, or judiciary to be more precise do not “prove” fluoride to be safe and effective. It’s not their job.
    I think you’re getting confused with science.

    But anyway…

    I am assuming you want Australian law?
    I live in NZ (can’t claim to be an Australian Lawyer or Law expert) but will give it a go… I have copied relevant sections for your reading pleasure, but feel free to read the entire Act.

    This is only for Queensland (I’m sure I could dig out a few more Statutes/case law – just ask me which jurisdiction)

    Water Fluoridation Act 2008

    Division 2, s4 Object of Act

    The object of this Act is to promote good oral health in Queensland by the safe fluoridation of public potable water supplies.

    https://www.legislation.qld.gov.au/LEGISLTN/CURRENT/W/WatrFluorA08.pdf

    Hope this clears it up for you!

  95. Complimentary Medicines, this is everything else that is beneficial to health like vitamins, minerals, herbs, aromatherapy and homoeopathic products etc.

    Ha ha ha ha ha.
    Spot the krazy.

    There is no argument on this.. the question is why and how are the government doing this and getting away with it.. well watch this space.. 2014 is going to see some hard hitting realities of law smack our government upside the head.

    No doubt. No doubt.
    The last 70 years have been a wash.
    But 2014?
    That’s when the big smack comes.
    Absolutely.
    Sure.
    Any minute now.
    Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.

    fluoride is a ‘treatment’ and it is occurring without my consent. Its pretty simple really…

    It’s pretty stupid really.
    Sue them then.
    Do it. Put up or shut up.
    We’re all waiting here.

    …… just remember, its not a theory if its true…

    Poor Lissa. How she struggles with the English language.

  96. “Cedric” / Ken, you’re confused.

    Hayden?
    Over here.
    Cedric.
    (…points to self…)
    Are you stoned or just dumb?

    You appear to need a definition of Appeal to authority.

    No, you appear to need a definition of an Appeal to Authority.
    Remember what you said…

    Thanks for your attempt “Christopher Atkinson”, however an appeal to authority…

    Read the fine print.

    (Hint: It’s not an Appeal to Authority to to get your teeth fixed based on the say so of…your dentist.)

    Hope that helps.

  97. Lissa Wekert,

    Likes Waters

    mmm…are you serious Lissa?

    “Im assuming you think the WWII crew were hard done by in the Nuremberg Trials too hey? How tin foil hat of them to actually determine that human beings have rights and no government or agency has the right to violate them…”

    You seem a little over excited and just more than a little muddled.

    Are you honestly saying that your “Human right” to drink unfluoridated water flows (forgive the pun) directly from The Nuremberg Trials, a series of Military Tribunals? Are you on this planet?

    Lissa, there is a quaint (if crude) expression where I live that explains your style of writing.; “all over the place like an old woman’s shit”

    (Please note this was not directed to you personally, but to your writing style)

  98. No, Lissa, I am suggesting you are a conspiracy theorist because you’ve taken a predetermined viewpoint which nobody, be it the judiciary, the politicians, public health organisations, the scientific community, whoever, agrees with, and concluded that they all have to be corrupt because they don’t agree with you.

    Not only that, this perceived corruption is common to every single country with fluoridated water supplies. Across international borders, the secret influence of the fertiliser industry (or Colgate or whoever) rears its ugly head. Think of all the bribe money which must be flowing about to finance all that corruption, and yet nobody seems able to trace it.

    And what do you base your ironclad legal opinion on? Why, legislation for the regulation of complementary (alternative/traditional) medicine products (ie items for sale). You know, concoctions which almost certainly don’t work (otherwise they’d be called ‘medicine’), but which people sell anyway.

    Now, a moment’s thought might suggest to you that, hang on a minute, if fluoridated water is not legally considered to be a medicine (complementary or otherwise), perhaps it might be specifically covered under other legislation. As indeed it is.

    But then, that’s not the answer you want, and so you seize on any broad definition you can find, ignoring the context, or the actual purpose of the law. And declaring, further, that your interpretation applies across multiple (in fact all) countries, irrespective of the fact they have their own separate legal systems.

    Might I suggest that, if you are so very confident in your interpretation of Australian law, you run it by a lawyer and then bring a court case against the government. Surely, that will be more effective than trying to convince a sceptical internet audience of your viewpoint.

  99. Additionally, Lissa, you really ought to grasp that the idea of the social good, as opposed to unfettered individual rights, is not unique to communism. I mean seriously, your first encounter with the idea of the social good cannot have been on the wikipedia page for communism.

    Unless, of course, you’re going to try and argue that taxation or the like is similarly communist in nature. Taxation, after all, is explicitly for the purpose of the social good. Do feel free to try and get out of it on the grounds that it infringes your individual rights though. Let us know how you get on.

  100. Stuart Mathieson

    Lissa. 
    The issue of court decsions in various jurisdictions is a vexed one. There are difficulties in extrapolating to other jurisdictions because legal, constitutional and political contexts differ quite markedly. It appears most jurisdictions while specifying standards for implementation are content to leave it to local communities to decide whether to implement the flouridation. This makes sense because courts would rather specify what you should not do rather than what you should, as much as possible for obvious reasons. The other reason is that a legalistic approach renders the situation vulnerable to litigious zealots and central authorities reserve the right to rapidly implement public health measures that might seem drastic most of the time and would be difficult to do if too many legal hurdles stood in the way. The other issue is political. As we have seen the topic is a vexed one in some quarters and politicians are not keen to have national electoral outcomes unduly influenced by relatively spurious issues. We know from historical experience how a nation’s destiny can be decided by a bunch of zealots. 

    The following link mentions cases in the US and Ireland that have found against challenges  against fluoridation on both the medical and human rights claims. The only case I can find that has endorsed the human rights/choice argument is the Netherlands which I understand was a decision based on the absence of an accessible alternative in the absence in the literature they consulted on the benefits. In other words they felt the benefits had to be overwhelming to compromise free choice. But other jurisdictions have ruled differently including New Zealand. Irish and Scottish courts have ruled against the anti lobbies and so have all US and State Courts of final appeal. To date, no federal appellate court or state court of last resort (i.e., state supreme court) in the US has found water fluoridation to be unlawful.
    If you can find one I would surprised. It would surely have excited international comment. In New Zealand a case in Taranaki is currently awaiting a ruling but according to reports in the Herald, spurious arguments presented by the plaintiffs do not look encouraging. 

    http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Water_fluoridation_controversy

    The following link gives a summary of the legal position in Scotland.

    http://www.bfsweb.org/documents/ethicsavebury.pdf

    In contrast to the absence of overwhelming legal and constitutional precedents against fluoridation the following list shows the widespread informed (scientific and medical) consensus at a regional and international level. I might add that most or all of the evidence that has been presented in court rooms to date has been found to be seriously wanting in some respect or another. 

    http://www.fluoridefacts.govt.nz/
    Lists the national and international agencies that endorse fluoridation. 
    http://www.fluoridefacts.govt.nz/Ministryof Health
    Local District Health Boards
    World Health Organization (WHO)
    The New Zealand Dental Association
    New Zealand Medical Association
    Public Health Association of New Zealand
    New Zealand Nurses Organisation
    Te Ao Marama – The Māori Dental Association
    Toi Te Ora – Public Health Service
    New Zealand College of Public Health Medicine
    NZ Dental and Oral Health Therapists Association
    NZ Oral Health Clinical Leadership Network Group
    New Zealand Society of Hospital and Community Dentistry
    New Zealand Rural General Practice Network
    Office of the Children’s Commissioner
    Royal New Zealand Plunket Society
    Paediatric Society of New Zealand
    Cancer Society of New Zealand
    Agencies for Nutrition Action
    The Royal Australasian College of Physicians
    Royal Australasian College of Dental Surgeons
    British Dental Association
    British Medical Association
    Australian Dental Association
    Australian National Health and Medical Research Council
    Department of Health, Victorian Government, Australia
    US Surgeon General
    American Dental Association
    Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (USA)
    FDI World Dental Federation

  101. Firstly Christopher… government legislation is not a court case.. nice try.. but FAIL. Over night I dug a little more diligently and actually found a few court cases where the ruling was against fluoride. Seems the court cases are actually being won by the opponents of fluoride. Secondly, when any normal person reads the comment… “the science is done and dusted and endorsed in court after court” … they would see that as meaning the courts have heard the case and been satisfied that it is safe and effective.. if that is not what it means then please educate me to what “the science is done and dusted and endorsed in court after court” means exactly.. Government legislation is not a court. Just because the government has an Act does not mean its been proven in a court of law.

    So here are a few court cases you can read up on.

    Paul Aitkenhead v. Borough of West View, No. GD-4585-78.
    Judge John P. Flaherty, now a Supreme Court Judge, presided over the trial in the case of Paul Aitkenhead v. Borough of West View, No. GD-4585-78. The city was sued over fluoridation.

    On November 16, 1978, Judge Flaherty handed down his decree. The critical parts of his opinion read as follows:
    “Over the course of five months, the court held periodic hearings, which consisted of extensive expert testimony from as far away as England. At issue was the most recent time-trend study of Dr. Burk and Dr. Yiamouyiannis, which compared cancer mortality in ten cities which fluoridated their water systems with ten cities which did not fluoridate over a period of twenty-eight years from 1940 to 1968. The study concluded that there was a significant increase in cancer mortality in the fluoridated cities.”

    Contrary to what has been said by promoters of artificial fluoridation of public water supplies, Judge Flaherty’s jurisdiction to make and enter his findings on November 16, 1978 was expressly sustained and upheld as appears in Aitkenhead v. West View, 397 Atl. 2d 878 (Pa. Cmwlth. 1979). Nor were his findings ever disturbed on appeal.

    In 1988, Justice Flaherty re-affirmed his convictions that fluoridation is a very dangerous practice. In a letter dated January 26, 1988 to Ms. Evelyn Hannan, he stated,

    “It has been years now since the case involving fluoridation was before me as a trial judge, but since that time nothing I have seen changes my view of the serious hazards occasioned by public fluoridation. To the contrary, what I have read convinces me all the more that indepth, serious, scientific effort should be undertaken before further expanding a questionable practice. Those who belittle critics of fluoridation do the public a mis-service, yet it seems in the face of strong, uncontradicted prima facie evidence, that is the tactic most often employed.

    Whether government has the right to force what it perceives as a benefit to the public was not directly before me in the case, but that also is to be pondered.

    Safe Water Foundation v. City of Houston
    Judge Anthony Farris presided over the trial in the case of Safe Water Foundation v. City of Houston, District Court of Texas, 151st Judicial District, No. 80-52271. On May 24, 1982, Judge Farris entered his findings of fact on the record of the case. His main findings were as follows:

    “That the artificial fluoridation of public water supplies, such as is contemplated by [Houston] City Ordinance No. 80-2530, may cause or may contribute to the cause of cancer, genetic damage, intolerant reactions, and chronic toxicity, including dental mottling, in man; that the said artificial fluoridation may aggravate malnutrition and existing illnesses in man; and that the value of said artificial fluoridation is in doubt as to the reduction of tooth decay in man.”

    Contrary to what has been said by promoters of artificial fluoridation of public water supplies, these findings of fact were specifically sustained and upheld as having been established at trial by a preponderance of the evidence, as appears in Safe Water Foundation v. Houston, 661 S.W. 2d 189 (Tex. App. 1983).

    “From the end of the 1960s until the beginning of the 1970s drinking water in various places in the Netherlands was fluoridated to prevent caries. However, in its judgement of 22 June 1973 in case No. 10683 (Budding and co. versus the City of Amsterdam) the Supreme Court (Hoge Road) ruled there was no legal basis for fluoridation. After that judgement, amendment to the Water Supply Act was prepared to provide a legal basis for fluoridation. During the process it became clear that there was not enough support from Parliament [sic] for this amendment and the proposal was withdrawn.” (Wilfred Reinhold, Legal Advisor, Directorate Drinking Water, Netherlands, January 15, 2000).

    As I have said, I do not need to think it is a medicine… the guidelines set out by every regulatory body clearly define fluoride as a medicine when added to water for the prevention of tooth decay for any logical thinking person who reads it. If fluoride isnt a medicine, then how come it has to be listed for the use in toothpaste? If it isnt a medicine then how can it work against tooth decay.. If its not a medicinal substance then what is it?

    Chris B says: “And what do you base your ironclad legal opinion on? Why, legislation for the regulation of complementary (alternative/traditional) medicine products (ie items for sale). You know, concoctions which almost certainly don’t work (otherwise they’d be called ‘medicine’), but which people sell anyway.” So what is fluoride Chris B .. its a mineral. Every other mineral in the world when used for the prevention of disease must be listed as a medicinal substance so explain to me how fluoride does not fall into that category. Or perhaps we should add fluoride to the list of “those concoctions that dont work” like vitamin C, vitamin D, vitamin B, magnesium, calcium, zinc .. .. surely you are not suggesting that all these vitamins and minerals have zero effect and do not work?.. Have you just exposed a massive scam in the world of preventative medicine?

  102. Stuart Mathieson

    Well Lissa, I haven’t checked the cases you have cited and in view of the misrepresentations your mob are adept at it might be worth investigating. How a judge can rule that a substance that occurs naturally in drinking water is harmful is perplexing indeed. If this ruling was “robust” as the antis are fond of saying, maybe we should rapidly install water evaporators in every household. It might come to that of course at the rate that some industries are polluting water sources.

    In the meantime readers might be interested in the following reported by people who actually work at the coal face.
    http://i.stuff.co.nz/dominion-post/news/9177309/Parental-neglect-of-kids-teeth-at-rotting-point

  103. Stuart Mathieson

    Lissa you are citing some rather old cases. The Netherlands case is interesting. I didn’t find a translation of the actual case record but I notice from your entry the decision hinged on a lack of a clear directive from the Dutch parliament the courts could act on. Given the contentious nature of the issue the Court made a ruling, basically kicking for touch and sending a signal to their parliament to legislate.
    Your other citations are rather dated and in any case there are many more at at least the appellate level who have ruled against the plaintiffs.
    In the absence of parliamentary directions it looks as if the issue will remain one to be decided community by community and perhaps that is a good thing. There are national guidelines but no national directions.

  104. Stuart Mathieson

    Lissa.
    Think someone should check out your case citations and I’ll tell you and everyone else why. There are holes in the “quotations” you have given a truck could be driven through. Many scholars have pointed out the problem with unidentified possible confounding variables. I mean for existence people on cities are exposed to a host of carcinogenic agents. Urban drift for example may be a major factor.
    You have a large hole in your argument on your medication claim. It is only your poor argument that suggests it do. We have seen plenty of evidence in these postings that the courts have rejected this argument and for good reason. F- occurs naturally in drinking water so adjusting its level to optimise its benefits does not make it a medication.
    It is interesting that when the simple facts are presented to the local community in a forum that hasn’t been hijacked by maniacs, common sense wins through as we are witnessing in Hamilton NZ.

  105. “Firstly Christopher… government legislation is not a court case.. nice try.. but FAIL”

    You ARE confused aren’t you! (wiping tears of laughter from my eyes!)

    You are not helping your cause here.

    Where to start…..where to start….

    So you dug a “little” more diligently?

    Were you diligent…?
    Really?

    Or was it more snip snippity snip, cut-and paste, cut-and paste…

    It took me all of 4 minutes to find a site, co-incidentally, mentioning the Nuremberg Trials…WoW, who woulda thought!

    So, how about, instead of throwing some irrelevant cases you pulled from;
    http://fluoridationqueensland.com/news/?p=14739 (Or other equally sad conspiracy site) you give me some relevant, up to date (Case or Statute) law from where you live…

    I took the time and effort to provide you with relevant Australian Legislation so please extend this courtesy to me.

    Can you find any?

    No?

    I didn’t think so.

    So Lissa, the law is not on your side here.

    The harder you try, the dumber you look.

  106. Lissa, I don’t think you quite grasp how the law works. The government makes legislation, the courts interpret it. In the absense of a court case deeming fluoridation unlawful (on whatever grounds the court sees fit to decide), the legislation stands.

    Again, if you think your interpretation of the legislation is ironclad, why exactly are you wasting your time arguing with us? Go forth and bring your court case. that will give you a solid legal precedent, and quite possibly settle the matter once and for all.

    Do bear in mind that fluoride does naturally occur in water, sometimes at concentrations greater than if artificially fluoridated, sometimes lesser. Now, if this is the case, what exactly is the distinction? Do we class water as a medicine if fluoride is naturally present in it? Or only if artificially added?

    On the toothpaste front, no doubt I could identify ‘alternative medicines’ which are naturally found (at reduced concentrations) in various food items. Does this make the food in question a medicine, and subject to regulation as such?

  107. Stuart Mathieson

    Re the US cases cited its worth bearing in mind state court judges can be appointed by the state legislature or by partisan election. Judge John P Flaherty eventually became a Supreme Court Judge but I have read there is a Monsanto friendly judge on that August body and given the character of some recent Federal administrations I would suggest anything is possible.

    In the meantime we hope to maintain faith in our own Judiciary and provided political interference (always a potential problem if the issue has significant political ramifications) is kept at bay I am confident our judges will not be swayed by zealots.

  108. Lissa.

    As you presented them your legal quotes mean nothing.

    Not without links to the judgments they are sourced from to provide context.

    Please supply the links, I’d be interested in reading them.

  109. Stuart Mathieson

    Individuals have sued municipalities for a number of illnesses that they believe were caused by fluoridation of the city’s water supply. So far, the majority of courts have held in favor of cities in such cases, finding no or only a tenuous connection between health problems and widespread water fluoridation. To date, no federal appellate court or state court of last resort (i.e., state supreme court) has found water fluoridation to be unlawful.

  110. Stuart Mathieson

    Richard.
    I get the impression the issue is more clear cut here in NZ partly because adjacent community comparisons have the same or few confounding variables. So data relating fluoridation to reduced cavities may be more reliable.

  111. Quite so Stuart, but I’m more interested in Lissa’s manner of presenting the quotes than their legal ramifications.

  112. Yep, Richards dead right…

    When it comes to water fluoridation, Science informs law, not the other way around.

    As one of squillions of examples… look at Dr John Snow’s work against Cholera…and the UK’s Parliament’s response to improve Public Health…and Science’s development of Germ Theory and all of the Global Public health initiatives and laws that followed and continue to. (see again Youtube clip below, Cedric recently posted on another thread)

    How much human life has been saved? How much human suffering avoided?
    Science. Then Law

    Repeat.
    How much human life has been saved? How much human suffering avoided?
    Science. Then Law

    Repeat.
    How much human life has been saved? How much human suffering avoided?
    Science. Then Law

    The dynamic between science and the law is important.
    Just look at the reasons put forward by the judges in the cases I have given and what have they looked to.

    The reasons they give. It is based upon….

    Science.

    It appears that poor ole Bill, Jamesrobertdeal and Lissa et al have the cart and horse back to front. Instead of focussing on legal loopholes and silly tautologies, they need to look at the science…

    …and the rest will follow as surely as the day follows the night, a dump follows a feed, two follows one, or as (Hu)Men landed on the moon….

  113. Stuart Mathieson

    I notice her cases are just copy and paste from one of the anti F- websites. That makes them highly questionable anyway. It’s becoming obvious the US is the home of quackery (always has been). Attracts people looking for streets “paved in gold!”

  114. Complimentary Medicines, this is everything else that is beneficial to health like vitamins, minerals, herbs, aromatherapy and homoeopathic products etc.

    Speaking of gold, homeopathy must be the best scam of the lot.
    Imagine how low the overheads are.
    All you have to do is take tap water and add it to sugar placeo pills and then get your local chemist shop to sell it on the same shelf as real medicines.
    A sweet deal.
    It’s a multi-billion dollar business and the suckers never once question how it’s possible to break the basic laws of chemisty like that.

    You know what I would like to see?
    Homeopathic birth control pills.
    That would sort out the sheep from the goats.

    Homeopathy – The Test (BBC Full Documentary)

  115. Stuart Mathieson

    Science is fundamental you say Christopher. I’m not sure I entirely agree. Conceptual issues need to be agreed on before we can appeal to science. The following thoughts are a bit disorganised but it should indicate where I’m coming from. 

    To begin with: We’ll never achieve unanimity in this matter because the basic divide is between those who make their theory fit the evidence and those who make the evidence fit their theory. A theory that doesn’t match the evidence (disconfirmation) must be rejected but these people reject the evidence that doesn’t fit their theory. I think we are agreed on that. This as we know is called “cherry picking” or “confirmation bias”. It is not good science. In fact it is not science at all. It is “quack quack”. So their “scientific” approach fails. 

    When the evidential strategy starts to loose traction they switch to legalistic or questionable ethical arguments. Anything that contravenes or inconveniences absolute individual freedom is slandered as “Communism” (i.e not pure unadulterated Social Darwinism). This is funny too, and ignorant because Darwin discussed altruism, religion and morality as attributes that can potentially advantage or strengthen a group. Evolution is as much about group, community or population characteristics as individual traits, perhaps more so particularly with division of labour and specialisation. This applies to both ants and humans.  

    Morality and ethics by definition involves curbing individual wants for the good of other(s) or the wider community. That’s where their ethical argument fails. Libertarian ethics and thus Libertarian rights i.e. individual rights are oxymoronic.
    Individual rights such as they are, are conclusions not premises, derivative not foundational. But, and this is important, “individual rights” can be permitted (to a degree) but as a useful fiction. “Individual rights” cannot exist on their own. They require the support of the community. Thus they cannot be foundational. This is a conceptual and thus a necessary truth. As necessary as 2 plus 2 equals 4, and bachelors are unmarried men (and spinsters unmarried women).
    Thus their ethical argument fails. 

    Their argument has two legs. Science and ethics. I maintain neither works for them. 

  116. I notice her cases are just copy and paste from one of the anti F- websites.

    I suspect the quotes are too. If so they probably well and truly quote-mined and dishonestly misleading.

    Lissa? Can we have links to the full judgment/s please.

  117. I don’t think libertarians argue for no cooperation between the species. Rather, that the cooperation should be voluntary and not by government coercion.

    If a top-down decision decides that Fluoride should be imposed on the people, it is coercion. If a referendum decides in favour, then it would appear to be voluntary

  118. Which species are you talking about Andy? How many libertarians are vegetarian?

  119. Which species are you talking about Andy?

    I was referring to humans.
    I am sorry if I didn’t make that clear.

    How many libertarians are vegetarian?

    I have no idea. What relevance does this have to dental decay?
    How many Marxists are meat-eaters?

  120. Just that you were talking about cooperation between species Andy (unless you think that humans compromise more than one species?).

    But given that was a mistake your “would appear” appears to leave the door open to the argument that a minority can dictate on fluoridation as they are attempting in Hamilton. Despite almost 70% referendum support for fluoridation the anti-F people keep talking about the rights of the 30% which is of course anti-democratic (but perhaps some libertarians agree?)

  121. I was specifically referring to intra-species cooperation. Stuart seem to think that “libertarians” want to exist in a vacuum and solely live for their own. I would argue that “libertarians” want less government intervention in their lives, not less cooperation.

    Presumably if the majority of the people thought that the minority should be dispatched to death camps, this would also be democratic, so we can stretch these definitions whichever way we want.

    If you don’t like Fluoridation in Hamilton’s water supply, move somewhere else. There are plenty of places in NZ that don’t put F in their water.

  122. Take your point about death camps, Andy – which is why arguments about democracy, government interferences and individual rights have to be moderated by reality and ethics.

    It would seem your “libertarianism” is not the same as some others. Which is good – I love to sea adherents of “isms” fighting among themselves.

  123. Stuart Mathieson

    I’m not saying that a collective decision, i.e a democratic decision (referendum) or democratically delegated decision (lawful authority) is the right decision by definition, but such a decision is lawful and authoritive. Whether it is the correct decision (achieves the desirable ends) is a scientific matter. That’s where Christopher’s point about science is paramount. Communities that make the correct or best decisions consistently will be communities that tend to flourish. This is Darwin’s point on effective group coordinated behaviour. It has to be a capacity for group coordinated behaviour that is open and empirical, not closed and dogmatic. Hence the slogan at the top of this blog site. Someone said recently that is why Athens flourished and inspired posterity and Sparta didn’t. I think it was Martin Nowak and Roger Highfield in “Supercooperators”. Athens knew when to close ranks in times of adversity and be open to change at other times. That of course was linked to their economic and intellectual success. Their greatest legacy from our point of view was the conceptialisation of knowledge (over sophistry and opinion) and of course science. This is where the benefits of individual and entrepreneurial innovation benefit the community. But there is always a necessary tension between the two.
    So it seems to me Libertarianism as a fundamental and absolute goal is deluded and policies justified on those grounds also. Empirical and epidemiological studies of societies and their approaches in this respect are interesting too. There is plenty of empirical evidence to show that Libertarian policies lead to iniquities that are associated with all sorts of social evils which I think will undermine the effectiveness and success of those societies. Great wealth and power and the engineering of enemies without may mask it for a time but societies that place too much emphasis on competition and not cooperation persist in making many mistakes according to William Edwards Deming, the man that engineered America’s WWII industry and subsequently Japan’s post war recovery. Deming famously maintained “cooperation always trumps competition”. The book “The Spirit Level” by Richard G. Wilkinson, comes to mind. The ruthless and short term exploitation of people, resources and environment also, the so-called “Tragedy of the Commons” by Garrett Hardin. The sacrifice of the (sustainable) common good including the environmental common good for free market and Libertarian dogma is a recipe for decline and failure. But so is the Soviet alternative. The correct and prudent path lies somewhere in between. This path led to the adoption of public health policies (such as fluoridation) that benefited and continue to benefit many communities. The Fox/Murdoch inspired or sustained surrealism that is Libertarianism wouldn’t do that. 

  124. I was unaware that Fox TV or Rupert Murdoch inspired Libertarianism, father than say, Ayn Rand
    However, i would agree that any polarised position is likely to be wrong. We need to be pragmatic about what works in a given time and place.

  125. father => rather

  126. Stuart Mathieson

    I might add that the doctrine of individuality and individualism is predicated of course on the belief in the eternal individual soul. This is why John Banks and other classical liberals are promoting charter schools and the implementation of theology in schools on a basis equal or even superior to the teaching of science and evolution. But that is a possible subject for another time. 

  127. Cooperation is great, but when the government puts a (figurative) gun to my head and says “cooperate, sucker”, then that is the bit some people object to.

    Why do we require governments to make us cooperate?
    If capitalism is the free exchange of goods and services, then surely this is the very definition of cooperation.

    If a government department decides that it is in the interests of a small percentage of the population to spend some of my money on putting chemicals in the water, then I might look at that with some suspicion especially if someone is moralising about it.

    Similarly, if someone tells me that carbon taxes are a good thing and they are personally making a large amount of money from such schemes, I will be somewhat sceptical of their sincerity

  128. I might add that the doctrine of individuality and individualism is predicated of course on the belief in the eternal individual soul

    meanwhile ..

    Faith is the worse curse of mankind, as the exact antithesis and enemy of thought.

    -Ayn Rand

  129. Stuart Mathieson

    Ah yes, Rand’s so-called “Objectivism”.
    You see she (from Hayek and other Austrian right wingers believed the only certainty you can have is your own thoughts and ideas. Descartes mad mental theatre idea associated With the Doctrine of Ideas and “scientificized” as the only (phenominal -thanks Immanuel) certainty we can possibly know. That’s the origin of methodological individualism. I’ve always known that right wing groups like the ACT party in NZ flourished originally from a single dog-eared copy of “Atlas Shrugged” doing the rounds of Manuera and Epsom. You see I was a very early fan of Roger Douglas and a member of the ACT party as an antidote to the Albanianism that once flourished here. I rapidly lost interest when I saw the crooks, robbers and misguided fruit cakes they harboured.
    Ayn Rand and her friends were certainly not the inspiration for so-called  “Libertarianism”. But she saw an opportunity to promote her own obnoxious and mad theories in the US because of the widespread myth of strong individualism and the opportunities for oligarchy there. A myth that satisfied originally the settler land acquisition aspirations and the exploitation of natural resources by the rich and powerful. 

    The term Libertarianism has varied over time and space. It has moved a long way since its Late Enlightenment origins. There have been Anarchist and even Communist Libertarians. (Lissa take note). The Murdoch global empire was encouraged to promote the recent US free market spin on the subject post war. 

    In the Stanford Encyclopaedia of Philosophy libertarianism is defined as the moral view that agents initially fully own themselves and have certain moral powers to acquire property rights in external things, a doctrine implicit in the scepticism entailed by the Doctrine of Ideas (Idea-ism – A. Musgrave). Hence Locke and the acquisition of large chunks of other peoples land on the grounds that communal ownership is no ownership at all. Very convenient for American settlers and other empire builders.  Libertarian philosopher Roderick Long defines libertarianism as “any political position that advocates a radical redistribution of power from the coercive state to voluntary associations of free individuals”, whether “voluntary association” takes the form of the free market or of communal co-cooperatives. 

    H. L. Mencken and Albert Jay Nock were the first prominent figures in the United States to call themselves libertarians. They believed FDR had co-opted the word liberal for his New Deal policies, which they opposed, and used libertarian to signify their allegiance to individualism and limited government. Mencken wrote in 1923: “My literary theory, like my politics, is based chiefly upon one idea, to wit, the idea of freedom. I am, in belief, a libertarian of the most extreme variety.” The idea has flourished in the Southern States where they are still fighting the Civil War and have only recently recognised creatures with dark skins as human. Australia is still some way behind, particularly in Queensland. 

    Even the Obama administration strokes the same bow. FDR applied Keynes theories with public works which started money circulating at the grass roots. Obama (quantitative easing) gave it to the Oligarchs which apparently is not “Communistic”. This explains the persistent demise of the American domestic economy. The trickle down theory doesn’t work. The trickle up theory does.

    US libertarianism has propagated beyond its borders since the 1970s via think tanks and political parties, and libertarianism is increasingly viewed worldwide as a free market position. This picture has been promulgated and popularised by the Murdoch empire. One of the implications is our old friend Divide and Rule. When individualism is preached to the struggling classes, it is easier for the oligarchs (Murdoch and the Koch family et al) to exploit them.

    This is the background I believe to the opposition toward fluoridation of water and in fact toward any policy that empowers any democratically delegated authority. 

    (selectively and freely quoted and edited in the best cavalier and Libertarian manner I can muster).
    http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Libertarianism)

  130. Stuart Mathieson

    Carbon (and Fluoride) in itself is not a bad thing. Life (on our planet and I suspect everywhere) is carbon based.
    It’s when you have too much that problems arise. Fluoride, even in toothpaste has to be regulated. Societies cannot operate without regulations. There’s plenty of room for discussion on fluoride levels, that isn’t the issue. There are some F- rich communities that have too much in its natural form. As for carbon, like fluoride, deniers claim there is no problem. Thus they lose credibility. They should, as with fluoride, be discussing ways of managing it appropriately. That us why the anti fluoride brigade have no credibility in scientific circles.

  131. Stuart Mathieson

    In the form of co2 I mean.

  132. As for carbon, like fluoride, deniers claim there is no problem. Thus they lose credibility

    Since you seem to think I am a “denier” (with a ridiculous hairpiece, apparently), maybe you would like to explain to me what the problem actually is, with either problem

    If you like, we could book a place on an Antarctic cruise. That is quite a good way to get some enforced time to ponder on the wonders of sea ice and nature.

  133. Stuart Mathieson

    I’d probably end up chucking you overboard.

  134. Stuart Mathieson

    Get your mate Alan Gibbs to pay for it and I’ll consider it. But I might still turf you overboard.

  135. My mate is not Alan Gibbs.You can go on an expedition funded by the Australian taxpayer, like this one, to investigate “cilimate change” and get stuck in the ice. Don’t need to stinkin’ Alan Gibbs

    Maybe you are unaware of this? Even The Guardian had a journalist onboard, who was furiously tweeting to the world.

  136. Stuart Mathieson

    I dont tweet im afraid but I could see what you were darkly hinting. But the Antarctic is big, isolated and complicated as is the worlds climate and weather systems. But of course you know that. It just gratifies whatever gratifies you to say otherwise. Others who are not game players will find the following enlightening. 

    https://www.sciencenews.org/article/taking-antarcticas-temperature

  137. Stuart Mathieson

    To others (who have open minds) you see the extraordinary high tide in Dunedin harbour at this moment. It will be even higher to morrow. Boat sheds are regularly having their bottoms wet and sea water is flowing up storm water drains and ponding Portobello, Tidewater and Portsmouth drives, even during calm settled weather.

  138. It must fascinate followers of the Fluoride debate to know how the tides are going in Dunedin NZ

  139. I’m sorry, I lost the connection between Fluoride and high tides in Dunedin somewhere.
    Is there a connection?

  140. There certainly is an ethical or non scientific aspect to this issue, however the arguments put forward by the anti’ movement as repeated in this blog endlessly appear not to be able to distinguish between the two therefore continually making inconsistent and nonsensical arguments.

    But focussing on the ethical perspective (rather than perceived harm(s), economics, or benefits) I can see that the ethical component shrinks the more closely you look a it.

    In nearly all examples I have seen, the…”Forced mass medication” argument repeated.

    Yet this simple phrase when dissected reveals two crucial elements;

    “Forced”
    “medication”

    The former belonging to ethical argument.
    The latter belonging to legal definition, which ultimately must be informed by science.
    Firstly I will explain why I believe that “medication” does not qualify as an ethical proposition.

    Simply put, “medication” is not the correct definition to describe water fluoridation.
    Anti fluoridationists muddy the water between legal definitions and their definition all the time.

    No. To be acceptable, the definition of “medication” must be recognised in law with regard to water fluoridation. It hasn’t.
    I have heard silly arguments such as fluoridated water “treats the person and not the water” (interestingly this appears regularly as counter argument pulled out of the hat whenever the Chlorine treatment is mentioned).
    These arguments are an irrelevant diversion and quite frankly, political rhetoric.
    As Richard has said “put up or shut up”

    But the power of realizing this definitional hurdle cannot be underestimated.
    If achieved, then “rights based” arguments (whether in law or the public mind) are relatively straightforward to promote; s11 Bill of Rights Act 1990.

    This may explain why opponents of fluoridation fanatically try to convince anyone and everyone that fluoridated water is a medicine or drug. Just take a look at jamesrobertdeal or Bill O’s obdurate assertion that fluoridated water is a medicine.
    Look too at Lissa (This is so common). But what invariably follows this assertion? Walah…the (individual’s) right to refuse medical treatment.
    But interestingly, once this definition is “fixed” in their particular schema, no amount of simple rational argument can sway them.
    They are implacable, immoveable.
    The have metaphorically put their fingers in their ears and are shouting Na Na Na Na Na….

    But take this precious definition from them and what do they have? An ingredient, additive or substance. However you try to spin it, the right to refuse medical treatment cannot be invoked. And as I have said before, the so called “ethical” argument falls like a pack of cards. And this, not due to ethics, but ultimately science (as the legal definition will be informed by the scientific community).

    The ethical argument therefore is significantly compacted. We are now dealing with a;

    “forced mass additive”

    I will replace “forced” with “State imposed”; “State imposed mass additive”.

    “Forced” is certainly a wrong descriptor. There is no “force” involved and alternatives do exist, albeit at greater cost. This is yet another example of political rhetoric.

    This I think is the most internally consistent argument (but still incredibly weak).
    That is to say, of an individual’s objection to State intervention in what is perceived as a public good. This was why I was so interested to find out whether Peter was a libertarian.

    This is also why I have been trying to find anyone who is opposed to fluoridation purely on the basis of “freedom of choice”; A “true” libertarian – if there is such a thing. I am not saying this libertarian may not also hold any concurrent views opposing fluoridation based on perceived harms (Look at Mary). However to maintain any semblance of internal consistency, this person can only ever say, “I object to water fluoridation because I object to the State’s interference of a Public good”.

    I have not seen anyone in this forum or elsewhere hold to this idea. Nonetheless, I have seen many people begin from this position. Yet this view quickly becomes adulterated through the addition of perceived harm contretemps. Just have a look at how Mary explains her position;

    “It wouldn’t matter if you had me believe that fluoride was some kind of amazing substance that had a huge amount of health benefits and no harm I would still be opposed if there were other people did not want it.”

    http://openparachute.wordpress.com/2013/12/02/fluoridation-debate-against-fluoridation-thread-part-6/

    This is the consistent libertarian I was talking about. But given her promotion of all manner of perceived harms I would suggest that a little more digging would expose a plethora of inconsistencies.

    So turning to the objection of State intervention.
    Firstly, as Stuart observed, ethically ““Individual rights” cannot exist on their own. They require the support of the community. Thus they cannot be foundational”

    And secondly when Stuart went on to say “Morality and ethics by definition involves curbing individual wants for the good of other(s) or the wider community”.

    Take another look at what Mary says;

    “I find the proclamation that this is being done for poor children whose parents do not make them brush their teeth, to be offensive” (Ibid)

    Although Mary makes the error that water fluoridation is “done for poor children” (it reaches all sections of the public, but it is true that those groups who are less likely to have the benefit of other oral health mechanisms surely receive a relative greater benefit)

    Why is Mary so offended?

    By the claim that water fluoridation is effective? or that the claim that some parents do not brush their teeth? Or that “poor children” are less likely to brush their teeth?

    So how does she square her libertarian views with those individuals incapable of making informed decisions?

    Does she refuse them, to use her words, access to all initiatives that have a “… huge amount of health benefits and no harm…”? (Ibid)

    You can decide how “ethical” you believe this position is.

    But to continue, the “Good” here must be determined by Science.

    In the case of water fluoridation, as has been shown (scientifically) in this forum conclusively that many benefits (Good) occur to the wider community.

    The Ethical element therefore becomes more apparent when the decision is made not to fluoridate.

  141. Stuart Mathieson

    Yes there is a connection Andy, you!

  142. How am I connected to the tides in Dunedin?

    Tides->Andy->Fluoridation of water.

  143. Stuart Mathieson

    Your task for the year Andy.

  144. There are three possibilties:
    1) Ice in the Antarctic is increasing.
    2) Ice in the Antarctic is decreasing.
    3) Ice in the Antarctic is about the same.

    To find out, you have to….measure the ice.
    There’s no other way.

    It’s like counting tigers in Andhra Pradesh.
    There are three possibilities:
    1) The tiger population in Andhra Pradesh is increasing.
    2) The tiger population in Andhra Pradesh is decreasing.
    3) The tiger population in Andhra Pradesh is about the same.

    To find out, you have to do work and….measure the tiger population.
    There’s no other way.

    Sending out a survey team and having the misfortune of having a survey team member mauled by a tiger tells you nothing about the tiger population overall.
    It would be nice if it did.
    It would save a lot of time and effort.
    But, sadly, that’s not the way it works.

    It doesn’t tell you if the tiger population is increasing.
    It doesn’t tell you if the tiger population decreasing.
    It doesn’t tell you if the tiger population is about the same.

    It’s not a substitute to actually counting the tigers and doing a proper survey.
    In science, only the work counts.

    It’s the same for gauging the viability of a business.
    There are three possibilties:
    1) The business is making money.
    2) The business is losing money.
    3) The business is treading water.

    To find out, you have to….check the accounts over the past year or so.
    There’s no other way.

    Having your accountant show up at the business to check the books but be swamped by shoppers that day tells you nothing about the financial health of the business overall.
    It’s not a substitute to actually checking the books and doing a proper audit.
    In business, only the numbers count.

  145. Interesting diversion from the Flouride debate

    I’d hate to hijack this discussion to prattle on about Antarctic sea ice and Dunedin tidal levels.

    Maybe someone can suggest a suitable venue for said important issues?
    I.e another thread ?

  146. Lissa isn’t very bright.
    The same can be said for all the anti-fluoridationists but Lissa is the current special snowflake.
    Just checked out her Facebook page.
    This is what I found.

    http://www.myfbjokes.com/gods-pharmacy-is-amazing/

    We really are dealing with morons here.

  147. Stuart Mathieson

    Just ignore him and he’ll eventually go away.
    Now Lissa. There’s an interesting one. Magicing by similarity or analogy. Cave drawings. Still widespread among the FB and twittering classes I suspect.
    Explains paranoia about fluoride. It carries it’s ancestry with it you see.

  148. Stuart Mathieson

    Using this logic if a brain looks like a walnut we should eat them!

    Ditto if the millennium meltdown failed to materialise neither will the oceans boil.

    This is great fun. We could move mountains metaphorically and literally!

  149. Why are you discussing a web page called Facebook jokes? If I was taken in by a satire site it was because it at least sounded plausible.

  150. Stuart Mathieson

    On the topic of this thread (fluoride) as with others (climate change) we are finding, I’m sure most of you will agree, polarisation of opinion occurs not because of the “facts” but in spite of the “facts”. The “facts” are disputed and when that fails to convince, adversaries resort to legal, semantic and ethical arguments. The scholarly work on Cultural Cognition seems to throw some light on this. 
    Here’s a quote from a Wiki article. 

    “In an experimental study, the researchers found that subjects were substantially more likely to count a scientist (of elite credentials) as an “expert” in his field of study when the scientist was depicted as taking a position consistent with the one associated with the subjects’ cultural predispositions than when that scientist took a contrary position. A related survey showed that members of opposed cultural groups hold highly divergent impressions of what most scientific experts believe on various matters, a finding consistent with the ubiquity of culturally biased recognition of who counts as an “expert.”

    http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cultural_cognition

  151. Stuart Mathieson

    That being the case it is likely a shift of opinion requires “shock treatment”.
    By “shock treatment” I mean traumatic encounter with the consequences of a state of affairs, development or disaster. Examples of such experiences in the 20th Century would be the two World Wars, the 1929 share market crash and the European Holocaust. A number of other issues changed and polarised positions too of course. The conflicts around the formation of the State of Israel and the displacement of Palestinians. More recently Superstorms are beginning to shift opinion and Ice melt and sea level rises are starting to intrude on public awareness. There may even be quite a violent backlash against the denial fraternity and their political representatives.

  152. Yep, Krazy.

    I shouldn’t have joined facebook…It’s far worse than I thought…

    Microwaves, House wiring, and a special category reserved for smart meters. and much much more…

    A flavour for every shade of crazy, roll up and take your pick…pick ‘em all

  153. Stuart Mathieson

    I forgot to mention the very obvious Vietnam War which radicalised my generation.
    What then of the issue of fluoridation?
    It’s a bit much to suggest a catastrophic loss of teeth will suddenly happen galvanising a rethink. Most people I think have a reasonably open and scientifically or at least medically informed view on this matter. When the issue is well publicised voters seem to support fluoridation in one form or another. The dispute ought to be about methods and management. The contrarians seem to be a relatively small but effective group of zealots who know how to position themselves and lobby descision makers in the face of a widespread lack of awareness of their machinations.

    I think the appropriate strategy for the proponents of good oral health need to formulate an approach from the general to the particular couched in terms that are not restricted to the one issue: fluoridation of the water supply. Getting fluoride to teeth is an important issue but so is good diet and oral hygiene. Effective teeth cleaning habits must be tought to young parents and a personal tooth brush and using it ought to be a significant milestone in the teaching of personal hygiene to young children. It must be tought at home and must be reinforced in child care and infant schooling. It should be reinforced wherever parents and grandparents formally socialise. The media particularly television has a role to play here too. Tragically children are starting at school with teeth already requiring extraction. The practice of using sugary drinks as pacifiers in baby bottles has to stop. The fact that coke is cheaper than milk is a major factor here.

  154. You could view FB as a very convenient window to the Internet, Christopher :)

  155. Stuart Mathieson

    Alison, I realise you were directing your remarks at Christopher but I don’t believe in making it too easy for people I don’t know to pry into my life. I haven’t tried it out and I can see advantages for young professionals. They seem to think so anyway. I and I think quite a few others just restrict themselves to private email networks and a few websites like this. Even that permits profiling hence the weight loss junk mail I get occasionally. My issue is the scope for Internet bullying and stalking, particularly on young people and others with issues.

  156. I use Facebook as a news aggregator, and use it as a kicking off point for lots of interesting readings. I stay away from the dross and the LolCatz. If you are picky you can form quite a useful resource. I don’t post much personally though,

  157. Stuart,

    Would you have any ideas on the best strategy to have fluoride introduced here to ChCh?

    Lobby the Mayor/CCC?

  158. Hi Christopher,
    As an ex resident of a ChCh I think you might find that most people in this somewhat damaged city have other issues to deal with than Fluoridating the water supply.

    It wasn’t that long ago that residents were advised to boil all water due to faecal contamination, and I don’t think it has really got a lot better as the infrastructure is still quite badly damaged.

    However, if this is a cause that you wish to promote, then good luck to you

  159. Stuart Mathieson

    Ken. If you could pass my contact details onto Christopher and we can discuss privately. Thanks.
    Stuart.

  160. Ooh a secret plot against the people of Chch ,
    How exciting.

  161. Thank you for your wonderful insight into the political situation in ChCh, I will file it next to all your other nuggets of wisdom Andy

  162. Well, Christopher, having spent 3 years trying (successfully, I might add) getting money from our insurance company, watch every building I have worked in over the last 20 years be demolished, endured 10,000 earthquakes or thereabouts, it is *possible* that water fluoridation is not the highest priority project in town.

  163. Yep I agree Andy, the council has many priorities, but it doesn’t need to be at the top of the pile to be implemented – a logical fallacy to set up fluoridation as a binary opposite to the earthquake, don’t you think?

  164. Absolutely, water fluoridation needs to be prioritised along with rebuilding the infrastructure, the city centre, the thousands of damaged homes, and then there is the elephant in the room ….. “climate change…” which tells us that we are wasting our time building a city at sea level, but we can do that anyway because no one actually believes that stuff, they just prattle on about carbon budgets and sustainability.

    So when you have booked your 5 min pitch to the council in 2018, let us know how it goes.

  165. If I didn’t know any better Andy, I would say you sound skeptical!

    Anyway, appreciated the support…perhaps I can get help from somewhere else, rather than as you say, a 5min pitch

  166. Cynical rather than sceptical.
    However, I see you have elevated yourself to a biblical status “Christ Atkinson” so maybe anything is possible?

  167. Not elevated, abbreviated

  168. Stuart Mathieson

    Christopher re Chch. The city and infrastructure is being reconceived and rebuilt. This is precisely the right time time to consider the welfare of inhabitants into the future. Public health experts should be involved in the planning. A move to low carbon transport, low energy housing, a modular approach to services with built in redundancy and flexability should feature in my opinion. Chch needs to ensure disrupts events like EQs, draughts, fires and flooding, increasingly likely with climate change are restricted and localised in their effects. An accurate assessment of oral health and the availability (and delivery) of fluoride needs to be assessed. We have to be realistic about the incapacity of vulnerable demographics to consistently manage many matters at the household level. Many Christchurch people have enough on their minds without facing the cost of expensive dental care and the health ramifications of ignorance and bad diet practices. Now would be the time for community leaders to discuss these matters. I don’t think fluoridation should be treated as a single issue. The science is undeniable but it should be considered with other healthy lifestyle policies. Now would also be the time to discuss antenatal education, standards of housing particularly rental housing and health and welfare monitoring of children in the schools. The condition of children in schools is a valuable cue to problems in the home. I think the new mayor of Christchurch would be very open to setting up an advisory council on such matters. I actually think the state as a central agency of human welfare has not done a very good job, particularly since the shift in political philosophy in the 1980s. Perhaps the time has come for a shift back to more local and provincial governance. Wellington is nominally the capital but it is really Auckland that calls the shots. People in the southern regions are not happy with that and the convoys of trucks streaming south hardly reduces our carbon footprint or promotes regional development and local employment. It is also dumb strategically. The “just in time” philosophy makes us vulnerable to geoclimatic events. We have seen ports, tunnels, roads and rail seriously damaged. It’s hard to know whether an existing body should be approached or a new one established interested citizens. Christchurch people would know best and there is no shortage of fine people in that city who would put their hands ups. If such a group demonstrated they had enough support, I am sure local politicians and officials would listen. I think such a group should be across part lines.

  169. Stuart Mathieson

    Christopher:
    Editing: across political party lines.

  170. Stuart, you seem to be missing the point that a lot of Christchurch is around
    sea level and therefore should not be rebuilt on the same site, according to The Scientists.

    I have followed the advice of The Scientists and plan to rebuild at 700 m above sea level.

    Don’t you think that dental health of the population is of little relevance when The Scientists tell us that the city is doomed?

    Just a thought.

  171. I see the nut cases are at it in The Waikato Times, letters column…rat poisen, Nazi’s dumming down populations, trained people never being trained in the harm chemicals cause..

    So, where is Hamilton re: fluoride…still waiting for…?

  172. Not for the first time I am disturbed by newspaper editorial policy.
    The claims above are pure bull yet the paper freely prints them in a forum where it may exercise discretion as what gets published. Sincere opinion is one thing but outright misinformation another.
    It merits discussion on the responsibility of the newspapers.

  173. It merits discussion on the responsibility of the newspapers.

    All opinions are not equal.
    A newspaper should call out a politician when they try and mislead the public. Same deal goes for any special interest group. A robust defence of science and exposure of conspiracy thinking benefits the entire community.

    ABC Media Watch – WIN News ACMA breach over vaccination false

  174. Stuart Mathieson

    On a different topic (climate change) I have crossed swords a number of times in the Otago Daily Times with Jock Allison. Jock is a retired scientist from Invermay. He did his PhD on sheep fecundity (no anti kiwi sniggers please). My last effort concluded by pointing out his statements were a copy and paste from an English source edited by a well known climate sceptic. The paper published my letter and then closed correspondence on the subject. Presumably this is just for a break.
    But I have it on good authority (my own) that newspaper proprietors do meddle in issues. I have seen letters on desks when the MMP issues was being debated. The ODT was reputedly orchestrating letter writing against MMP and using “names” in the community to do so. I put two and two together.

    But back to the fluoride issue. For those who didn’t see the Campbell Live program on the Byron Bay (Australia) decision, here’s the link. I have it on good authority (Professor Evans) that some of the most cogent material he provided was edited out. But my impression is the program is pretty fair to the scientific case given the format and time constraints. Did Third Degree ever discuss the issue? If they didn’t they should. It might take two or three episodes. Here’s the link.

    http://www.3news.co.nz/Australia-also-struggling-with-fluoride-debate/tabid/817/articleID/323278/Default.aspx

  175. A newspaper should call out a politician when they try and mislead the public

    That would make the newspapers a pretty busy place then, because that is pretty much all the politicians do .

  176. In the Byron Bay piece, Rose Wanchap says;

    “It seems crazy in our Shire where we’ve got 30,000 people to “medicate” 30,000 people to reach four or five hundred children who are from the lower income or are of aboriginal decent ’cause it’s harder for them”

    Yep, Crazy.

  177. Not really crazy. There may be better ways to deal with the 500 children in the lower income bracket than fluoridation. I guess that social services in the area are already in contact with a good number of these families already, who can offer general health advice that may provide a better outcome overall.

    It doesn’t preclude fluoridation however.

  178. “It seems crazy in our Shire where we’ve got 30,000 people to immunize from whooping cough 30,000 people to reach four or five hundred children who are from the lower income or are of aboriginal decent ’cause it’s harder for them”

    “It seems crazy in our Shire where we’ve got 30,000 people to make seatbelts compulsory for 30,000 people to reach four or five hundred children who are from the lower income or are of aboriginal decent ’cause it’s harder for them”

    “It seems crazy in our Shire where we’ve got 30,000 people to put iodine in salt affecting 30,000 people to reach four or five hundred children who are from the lower income or are of aboriginal decent ’cause it’s harder for them”

    There may be better ways to deal with the 500 children in the lower income bracket than vaccination/compulsory seatbelt wearing/iodised salt. I guess that social services in the area are already in contact with a good number of these families already, who can offer general health and seatbelt wearing advice that may provide a better outcome overall.

  179. Stuart Mathieson

    Here’s an interesting posting on a GOP site called ” The Daily Courier” on social responsibility.

    http://www.dcourier.com/main.asp?SectionID=36&SubsectionID=73&ArticleID=126008

    One “Charles Darwin” opined that
    “Repeating a lie does NOT make the statement true.
    Taking someone’s property by force to redistribute to someone IS SOCIALISM. 
    Socialism is the system in the USA. It HAS BEEN the system for decades! 
    Poor people have no RIGHT to anyone’s property. 
    Poor people are responsible for themselves. 
    Disabled and retarded people are the responsibility of their families. 
    Stop the tyranny!”
    Posted: Friday, December 06, 2013.

    Sound familiar?

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