-- Will we say goodbye to free speech?
Reality bites – especially in a war
Disinformation – what it is, who promotes it, and how to combat it.
Nord Stream terrorism, UN failure, and “Official Secrets”
Secret “war-crime” warrants by International Criminal Court is mischief-making
Getting the full story about Ukraine
The west vs the rest – the world is changing
Ukraine commemorates Nazi collaborators
Do New Zealanders no longer support Ukraine?
The subtlety of neo-Nazi influence in Ukraine – ignored by our media
Where are Ukrainian refugees going? – an update
Is New Zealand covertly supporting the glorification of neo-Nazism?
Following the war in Ukraine – an update
Russian anti-war protester goes to see for herself
You can’t understand Ukraine without acknowledging its deep divisions
Once again, those Russian neo-Nazis – the Wagner group
A heartwarming story about a Ukrainian prisoner of war
Over 50 POWs killed. A military accident or a cynical war crime?
Ukraine/Russia war, an intelligence operation or a sting, Ukrainian and UK spies, and Bellingcat
Mainstream media defends poor journalism by smearing good journalism
Ukraine war – a shocking failure of our mainstream media
How is the war going?
Why should Ukraine listen to lame duck Boris Johnson?
Ukraine war – a failure of honest diplomacy and reason
British volunteer soldier in Ukraine speaks up
What about those Russian neo-Nazis?
Neo-Nazis in Ukraine – stages of denial
Confusion about neo-Nazis in Ukraine-Russia war
Neo-Nazis in Ukraine. Comedians are often more truthful than politicians.
Ukraine – a beginner’s guide
Why the silence on censorship?
Everything You Know About Ukraine Is WRONG
Some sense on the Russia-Ukraine war
British volunteer soldier in Ukraine tells his story
Virtue signaling over Ukraine
Fluoridation and child IQ – the problem of counting chickens before they hatch
August ’21 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
July ’21 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
June ’21 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Anti-fluoridation group tells porkies about NZ fluoridation review
Opponents of fluoridation all at sea with new legislation
Update of NZ fluoridation review timely and useful
May ’21 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Fluoridation contribution to heavy metals in drinking water is too low to measure
April ’21 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Hip fractures in the elderly and fluoride – contradictory evidence
March ’21 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
An open letter to Paul Connet and the anti-fluoride movement
February ’21 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Data dredging, p-hacking and motivated discussion in anti-fluoride paper
Censorship: Thinking you are right – even if you’re wrong
Embarrassing knock-back of second draft review of possible cognitive health effects of fluoride
The promotion of weak statistical relationships in science
Can we trust science?
January ’21 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
I don’t “believe” in science – and neither should you
December ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Science is often wrong – be critical
November ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Hyping it up over fluoridation
September ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
August ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
July ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Even studies from endemic fluorosis areas show fluoride is not harmful at levels used in fluoridation
Canadian studies confirm findings of Broadbent et al (2015) – fluoridation has no effect on child IQ
Child IQ in countries with endemic fluorosis imply fluoridation is safe.
Anti-fluoride 65 brain-fluoride studies not evidence against fluoridation
June ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking delayed
Another study used by anti-fluoride activists actually shows community water fluoridation OK
May ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
When scientists get political: Lead fluoride-IQ researcher launches emotional attack on her scientific critics
New study touted by anti-fluoridation campaigners actually indicates fluoridation is safe
No relationship of bone cancer to fluoridation – another new study the anti-fluoride brigade will attempt to ignore
New review finds fluoride is not a developmental neurotoxicant at exposure levels relevant to fluoridation
April ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Anti-fluoride campaigners still rely on irrelevant studies
Author confirms anti-fluoridation activist misrepresentation of her work
Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 6: Incestuous relationship of these studies
Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 5: Don’t censor yourself
Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 4: Till et al (2020)
Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 3: Riddell et al (2019)
Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 2: Green et al (2019)
Anti-fluoridation propaganda now relies on only four studies. 1: Bashash et al (2018)
March ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
No; a new study from Ethiopia does not indicate fluoridation is bad for your bones
Anti-fluoridationists put faith in new “strong” studies to provide evidence missing in draft NTP review
Industry-funded translation can introduce bias in selection of studies for scientific review
Another embarrassment for anti-fluoride campaigners as neurotoxic claim found not to be justified
February ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Beware of scientific paper abstracts – read the full text to avoid being fooled
January ’20 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Fluoridation and sex steroid hormones – or the mouse that roared
What are the recent fluoride-IQ studies really saying about community water fluoridation?
December ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Fluoridation science and political advocacy – who is fooling who?
Scientific integrity & fluoridation – Dr Ghali responds
Sleep disorders and fluoride: dredging data to confirm a bias
Some fluoride-IQ researchers seem to be taking in each other’s laundry
Statistical manipulation to get publishable results
Scientific integrity requires critical investigation – not blind acceptance
November ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Anti-fluoride propagandists appear not to read the articles they promote
The anti-fluoride brigade won’t be erecting billboards about this study
October ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
ADHD and fluoride – wishful thinking supported by statistical manipulation?
Experts complain to funding body about quality of fluoride-IQ research
What do these mother-child studies really say about fluoridation?
September ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Biostatistical problems with the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
Fluoridation – A new fight against scientific misinformation
An evidence-based discussion of the Canadian fluoride/IQ study
More expert comments on the Canadian fluoride-IQ paper
Politics of science – making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear
August ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Bye, bye to the collusion lie
If at first you don’t succeed . . . statistical manipulation might help
Anti-fluoride activists misrepresent a new kidney/liver study
July ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
MH17 tragedy- 5 years on
June ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Chemical watchdog confirms suppressed report but justifies the suppression
May ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Does international chemical watchdog cherry-pick evidence to confirm a bias?
Psychology of Russiagate – an adult discussion for a change
April ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Russiagate – Some insights into its origins and results
Russiagate: Lessons for the media. But will they listen?
March ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Aftermath of the Mueller report – the media starts looking at itself
Mueller report to be released mid April – but it will be redacted
Collapse of the “Russiagate ” myth exposes how corporate media has failed
Getting out alive – why we should always demand evidence
Terrorism in Christchurch – some thoughts
“Disinformation” and the mainstream media
February ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
January ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Preempting the annual misrepresentation of NZ dental health data by anti-fluoride activists
December ’18 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Fluoridation: Another study shows stopping fluoridation bad for child tooth decay
November ’18 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Media manipulation – the tail wags the dog
Protection of teeth by fluoride confirmed – yet again
And you thought Russiagate could not get sillier.
Trump and the media – codependents wallowing in the mud
Julian Assange’s mother appeals for her son’s freedom
October ’18 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Nuclear dangers if INF treaty abandoned could be worse than in the 1980s
Fluoridation and ADHD: A new round of statistical straw clutching
September ’18 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
September ’18 NZ blog ranking – delayed
Flight MH17 tragedy in Ukraine – new evidence
Novichock detection and the Salisbury tourists
A more convincing take on prenatal maternal dietary effects on child IQ
Fluoridation: “debating” the science?
Opportunities and problems for grassroots activism offered by the internet
August ’18 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Who is weaponising the vaccination debate?
Another BUK accident in Ukraine
Policing social media – who is coming next and who is behind it?
Political interference prevents investigators from considering the “bleeding obvious”
July ’18 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Mainstream media “mob violence” over Helsinki summit
Blatant misreporting of latest OPCW report on chemical weapons in Syria
Time for a serious auditing of Porton Down’s nerve agent stocks?
June ’18 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Anti-fluoride campaigners exhaust their legal channels with another loss
Magical World Cup Gala Concert
May ’18 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Anti-fluoridation activists buy scientific credibility using a predatory publisher
Another shonky OPCW chemical incident report on Syria
Not just another rat study
Russian sports doping scandal looking like an illusion?
April ’18 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Mainstream media-political alliance gets vindictive
Novichock – a marketing ploy?
The “heart of the Syrian chemical weapons programme” destroyed?
OPCW on Salisbury poisoning – one step forward, two back?
Anti-fluoridationist Paul Connett misrepresents NZ data
Anti-fluoridationists rejection of IQ studies in fluoridated area.
March ’18 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
A conference paper on the maternal prenatal urinary fluoride/child IQ study has problems
The 52 IQ studies used by anti-fluoride campaigners
The real lessons from Vladimir Putin’s re-election
Why is it so difficult to get an open discussion on fluoridation?
Mary Byrne’s criticism is misplaced and avoids the real issues
Anti-fluoride group coordinator responds to my article
Where could you get a nerve agent in Salisbury?
The first casualty . .
Paul Connett’s misrepresentation of maternal F exposure study debunked
February ’18 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Anti-fluoride activist commits “Death by PowerPoint”
Paul Connett “updates” NZ MPs about fluoride?
Anti-fluoride activists misrepresent another thyroid study
Fake news from the White Helmets returns
RT election subversion – yet again?
January ’18 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Yet another fluoride-IQ study
So you are saying . . . . . !
Jordan Peterson demonstrates the importance of free speech
Select your conspiracy theory and connect the dots
Whose who in the Russiagate affair – an infographic
A week of good news in New Zealand
Is “Russiagate” another deception like Iraqi WMDs?
“Fire and Fury” exposes the fundamental problems of the anti-Trump movement
Confirmation bias – we all suffer from it but how can we reduce its effect?
December ’17 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Yet another way Russia is undermining our society
Anti-fluoridationists misrepresent New Zealand dental data – an annual event
Fluoridation means money in the pocket
Anti-fluoridation campaigners often use statistical significance to confirm bias
November ’17 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
The problem with scepticism
Chemical weapons use in Syria UN report flawed by political bias
Anti-fluoride “expert” finds the real reason oral health has improved – and it’s not fluoride
Meat substitutes – prospects and new ethical questions
October ’17 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
New fluoride debate falters
Political maturity in New Zealand – at least compared to the US
Flaw and porkie in anti-fluoride report claiming a flaw in Canadian study
Do we need a new fluoride debate?
September ’17 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Endemic fluorosis and its health effects
Maternal urinary fluoride/IQ study – an update
Fluoride, pregnancy and the IQ of offspring
Facts about fluorosis – not a worry in New Zealand
We need more post-publication peer review
Cassini plunges into Saturn tonight – a grand finale
What’s with the anti-fluoridationist promotion of dental health programmes?
Non-violence in the defence of free speech
August ’17 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Fluoridation not associated with ADHD – a myth put to rest
From Charlottesville to Boston – a lesson
Hypocrisy, irrationality and wise words from Monty Python
Are we all anti-fascist now?
Are fluoride researchers sacked for their findings?
Fluoridation and cancer
Local anti-fluoride activists tell porkies yet again
July ’17 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
The main stream media is out of touch
Don’t rely on sources – follow the evidence
Stovepiping to produce fake news
June ’17 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Darwin, sexual selection and Putin
Fluoridation: Open letter to Democrats for Social Credit
Fluoridation: What’s happening with the New Zealand legislation?
May ’17 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
The “information war” and social media, or how to tell if you are a Kremlin troll
Anti-fluoridationists commonly misrepresent Ministry of Health data
ChildSmile – a complement, not an alternative, to fluoridation
Fluoridation helps protect adult teeth as well as children’s
Fluoridation: the truth about heavy metal contamination
Visualising the numbers – The Fallen of World War II
Bottle fed infants: fluoridated water not a problem
April ’17 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Citing scientific studies and the arrogance of ignorance
No, fluoridation is not associated with leading causes of death
Anti-fluoridationists exploit infant deaths by fiddling statistics
Here we go again
The Putin Derangement Syndrome
Bottle fed infants: fluoridated water not a problem.
March ’17 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Another anti-fluoridation whopper
2018 Global Atheist Convention
Fluoridation: Making sense of the Ministry of Health data
Fluoride, coffee and activist confusion
Trump didn’t invent the problems – and his opponents didn’t invent protest
Anti-fluoride authors indulge in data manipulation and statistical porkies
Be careful what you wish for
An Oscar for Al Qaeda?
February ’17 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
EPA comprehensively debunks anti-fluoride claims of a fluoride-IQ effect
Anti-fluoridationists go to Supreme Court – who is paying for this?
Debunking a “classic” fluoride-IQ paper by leading anti-fluoride propagandists
Islamophobia or mental illness?
Tha Amnesty report – and a response from Syria
Non-fluoridated Christchurch does not have better teeth than fluoridated Auckland
January ’17 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Debunking anti-fluoridationist’s remaining 12 reasons for opposing fluoridation
Madonna teaches us a lesson in critical thinking
New research confirms adults benefit from community water fluoridation as well as children
Premature births a factor in cognitive deficits observed in areas of endemic fluorosis?
Sources our mainstream media uses to promote their narrative about Syria
More nails in the coffin of the anti-fluoridation myths around IQ and hypothyroidism
Water fluoridation – what to expect in the near future
Fluoridation: New scientific review of fluoride and oral health
Critical thinking, not censorship, is the solution to fake news
Anti-fluoride IQ claims are false
December ’16 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Large Swedish study finds no effect of fluoride on IQ
Fake news and the new fact-free reporting paradigm
Fluoridation: New research confirms it is cost effective – yet again
Fluoridation: members of parliament call from submissions from scientific and health experts
Fake news, human suffering and the fight against terrorism
November ’16 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Sometimes I think the world has gone mad
Leader of flawed fluoridation study gets money for another go
White Helmets confirm authenticity of acted “rescue” video
Manufacturing news, and opinion, about Syria
Why should we subsidise religious leaders and their silly statements?
Warriors, scouts, Trump’s election and your news media
US elections – who should you be angry with?
Trump’s victory – why the surprise, why the anger?
Anti-fluoride claims often not relevant to New Zealand
October ’16 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
White Helmets dupes New Zealand government?
Voluntary media censorship is ethically wrong
Fluoridation not associated with hip fracture, heart attacks of osteosarcoma – new study
Anti-fluoridation activist Paul Connett has a senior moment about our debate
“Humanitarian” intervention and war crimes
Crocodile tears over Syria at UN security council
Anti-Syrian propaganda and the White Helmets
Shyness of anti-fluoride election candidates
Syria & the fog of war
September ’16 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
But will it stand up in court?
Flogging a dead horse – anti-fluoridationists lose in court again
Syria UN Ambassador makes sense of the war in Syria
The shaky Syrian ceasefire agreement staggers on – or does it?
Fluoridation & democracy: Open letter to DHB candidate Andrew Buckley
When will they ever learn?
Ceasefire in Syria is exposing real nature of “moderate” rebels
What do Syrians think of the new cessation of hostilities agreement?
Dissecting pseudoscientific and political propaganda
August ’16 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
An anti-fluoride trick: Impressing the naive with citations
Does community water fluoridation reduce diabetes prevalence?
“Filtering” out fluoride
Rio Olympics – what are those gold medals worth?
Fluoridation – freedom of choice
Is water fluoridation better than salt fluoridation?
Ethics and the doping scandal – a response to Guest Work
Being better informed – unexpected advice from The Guardian
July ’16 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Quantifying the problem of international sports doping
Dental health – it’s not all about fluoride
The Putin diversion
The insult of low expectations
MH17 tragedy – 2 years on
Misrepresenting fluoride science – an open letter to Paul Connett
Are you really right?
June ’16 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Why don’t feminists fight for Muslim women?
Permission to have that conversation
A cynical take on effective speakers
Richard Dawkins – speech to Reason Rally, 2016
Chemophobic scaremongering: Much ado about absolutely nothing
MH17 tragedy – new investigation launched
Fluoridation: News media should check press releases from anti-fluoridationists
Fluoridation debate: Responding to Tom O’Connor
May ’16 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
New review shows clear economic benefits from community water fluoridation
Debating fluoridation and tyranny – Tom O’Connor responds
Attempting a tyranny of the minority on fluoridation
Writing to please the reader’s ear
Fluoridation: One small step sideways?
New research confirms water fluoridation does not cause bone cancers
Public discussion of science can be toxic
Fluoridation cessation studies reviewed – overall increase in tooth decay noted
Mistakes were made – but by who?
Don’t be fooled by simple media “science”
“Do the math” – a bit like “Do the research!”
Victory Day celebration of defeat of terrorism in Palmyra
Will we be using contact lens cameras in future?
Barrel bombs, hell cannons, Aleppo and media bias
April ’16 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Korean community water fluoridation supported by new evidence
Science and management – a clash of cultures
Anti-fluoride campaigners cherry-pick irrelevant overseas research but can’t find relevant New Zealand research
Cochrane fluoridation review described as “empty”
Anti-fluoridationists misrepresent new dental data for New Zealand children
A challenge to anti-fluoridationers to justify their misrepresentation of New Zealand research
Fluoridation decisions to be made by District Health Boards
Nadine gives a necessary message to her fellow Muslims
Anti-fluoridationists now scaremonger about silica in your drinking water
Reversed responsibility and the burden of proof
Anti-fluoridation cherry-pickers at it again
March ’16 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Fluoridation: My podcast with with Howard Farran
Why is Donald Trump so successful – and will he win?
Why are our politicians so silent on Palmyra’s liberation from clutches of Daesh?
The US speaks in two tongues on terrorism
Chemistry is everywhere – even in those natural products
Life for women under Daesh (ISIS)
The toxicity of chemophobia
Anti-fluoridation campaigner, Stan Litras, misrepresents WHO
Hiding behind “experts”
The “interfaith” trap – particularly for atheists
A Chinese study the anti-fluoridation crowd won’t be citing
Misrepresentation, misogyny and misandry – these should concern sceptics
Searching articles on fluoride
February ’16 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Big business funding of anti-science propaganda on health
Anti-fluoridationist’s flawed attacks on Calgary study
Media misleading on Syria
Stephen Fry on Twitter
Richard Dawkins and the Skeptics Conference controversy.
Is the media lying to you about Syria?
Fluoridation: Whakatane teaches us something we should already know
Chemistry – “to dupe, to cheat?”
What a pleasant surprise!
Censorship by demonisation
Once more on the IQ and fluoride myth – why ignore other factors?
January ’16 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Fluoridation: Whakatane District Council makes the Hamilton mistake
New study finds community water fluoridation still cost effective
“Crusade Against Multiple Regression Analysis” – don’t throw baby out with bathwater
Fluoridation: Some simple chemistry
The danger of insisting on your own facts
Flight MH17 in Ukraine – what do intelligence services know?
Iron and fluoride in human milk
Hubris of the google researcher
The Harvard study and the Lancet paper
Cultural and ideological bias in scientific literature reviews
Facts, beliefs and delusions
Science – a method of investigation, not a belief system
Yet another misrepresentation of a dental health study
December ’15 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Peer review – the “tyranny” of the third reviewer
Christmas – “White Wine In The Sun”
Community water fluoridation still cost-effective
Democracy and expert advice on scientific issues
Fluoride and IQ – another study coming up
The hardest thing in life . .
Climate deal signed – now for the hard bit: action
Traditions and social arrangements out of step with social diversity
“Natural News” on trial in The Hague for crimes against science
Rejection of scientific studies in online discussions
Another defeat for anti-fluoridation claims about arsenic
November ’15 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
The problem with reasoned discussion
John Pilger on Paris, ISIS and Media Propaganda
Science is never done – some scientific terms explained
Studies show – or do they?
Should we trust science? – Wellington talk
Can world leaders learn from the Paris terror attacks?
Anti-fluoride hypothyroidism paper slammed yet again
Cyberchondria and similar “illnesses”
Onehunga and the “fluoride-free” myth
Thames voters decisively support fluoridation
Why doesn’t Putin shirtfront someone?
October ’15 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Scientific papers, civil disobedience and personal networks
The quackery of anti-fluoride internet trolls
Our beautiful planet: Astronaut art works
Christian co-option of karakia
Combatting anti-fluoride Gish gallopers
MH17: Final technical report
Responding to Tracey Brown on fluoridation
“The ugly truth” – Tracey Brown ticks me off
MH17 – another Boeing sacrificed for investigation.
The ugly truth about critics of “the ugly truth” in science
Many Syrians see Russians as saviours
Door knockers should pay to interrupt us
September ’15 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Fluoride: More scaremongering using drug warnings
Putin’s UN address: “Do you realise what you’ve done?”
Obama’s United Nations address: “We Must Stamp Out ‘Apocalyptic Cult’ ISIS”
European and Māori major non-believers in NZ
Cochrane responds to misrepresentation of their fluoridation review
ChildSmile dental health – its pros and cons
Should all scientists really be militant atheists?
The Alternative Medicine Racket
The chemical party
A job with a view – but not for the clumsy
Fluoridation: Freedom of choice – and responsibility
My talk to the Reason & Science Society – an invite
Why the internet annoys chemists
Freedom of religion and belief – not a license to interfere with others
Humanitarian intervention – but when & how?
Discussing science on social media
August ’15 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Australian census religion question – progress
In the end, it came down to the science in Denver
Subverting democratic consultation on the fluoride issue
Religious instruction scrapped from school curriculum in Victoria
Alternative reality of anti-fluoride “science”
What is life?
Anti-fluoride propagandists get creative with statistics
Fluoridation: Connett’s criticism of New Zealand research debunked
Fluoridation: Connett’s naive use of WHO data debunked
Time to give up on Sitemeter
70th anniversary of first use of atomic weapon against civilians
Connett misrepresents the fluoride and IQ data yet again
Fluoridation: Newsweek science journalism bottoms out
July ’15 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
The bureaucratic solution to a problem
Fluoridation: “Sciencey” sounding claims ruled unacceptable
Comparing the Cochrane and NZ Fluoridation Reviews
Rapid change in attitudes to marriage equality
Scaremongering and chemophobia
MH17 tragedy: 1 year on
Talk of “mini ice age” bunkum
Progress in removing religious instruction from public schools?
Fluoridation: Beliefs about safety and benefits
Climate change: Our time really is running out
Cochrane fluoridation review. III: Misleading section on dental fluorosis
June ’15 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Cochrane fluoridation review. II: “Biased” and poor quality research?
Cochrane fluoridation review. I: Most research ignored
What is causing warming of the earth?
New science bloggers wanted for Sciblogs 2.0
Gagging of scientists – a common problem?
I wish more people were aware of this
Misrepresentation of the new Cochrane fluoridation review
News media – telling us how to think
Misrepresenting the York fluoride review
Fluoridation: Misrepresenting the “saliva theory”
Something to consider
Fluoridation and horses – another myth
Science and social media in new Zealand
Monday morning proverb
Fake weight-loss study example of wider problem
Calcium fluoride and the “soft” water anti-fluoridation myth
May ’15 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Connett & Hirzy do a shonky risk assesment for fluoride
Making mountains out of scientific mole hills
Don’t expect to see chemical safety data sheets in restaurants
RSNZ Science Book Prize winner – Tangata Whenua
Don’t put all the blame on the Germans – a lesson from World War II
The problem of “Fact-Resistant Humans”
What a nice idea
Water fluoridation effective – new study
Follow the money?
The distrust of science – a task for science communication
We always seem to ignore the causes
April ’15 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Wise words from Carl Sagan
Poor peer review – and its consequences
Connett fiddles the data on fluoride
ADHD link to fluoridation claim undermined again
Commercial and ideological support of anti-fluoride activity
Why is Vladimir Putin so popular in the USA?
Is comfirmation bias essential to anti-fluoride “research?”
The will to find out
IQ not influenced by water fluoridation
Making sense of scientific research
The frustrations of modern technology
March ’15 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Poor peer-review – a case study
The arrogance of science?
New Zealand science book prize – 2015 Short list
ADHD linked to elevation not fluoridation
Anonymous comments on social media
More poor-quality research promoted by anti-fluoride activists
Free download – “Severe dental fluorosis and cognitive deficits”
Are submissions on fluoridation worth it?
Social media and science – the problems and the challenge
A couple of “oldies” inject some sense into international politics
Open letter to Lisa Hansen on NZ Fluoridation Review
February ’15 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Paper claiming water fluoridation linked to hypothyroidism slammed by experts
Dirty tactics by anti-fluoride activists in Taupo
NZ Fluoridation review – Response to Micklen
NZ Fluoridation review – HS Micklen responds to critique
Did business interests interfere with Hamilton’s fluoride tribunal process?
A perspective of distances in space
Download report analysing anti-fluoride attacks on NZ Fluoridation Review
Social health policies, freedom of choice and responsibility
Reality of war for civilians
Stephen Fry not pulling any punches
January ’15 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
US meddling in Ukraine behind coup
Sunday reading – Richard Dawkins reads some of his “fan mail”
Is debating with anti-science activists worth the effort?
Six months on – concerns about MH17 investigation
Severe dental fluorosis and cognitive deficits – now peer reviewed
Those evil chemicals
“Internet and social media misinform thousands daily”
“I just know”
The victims of terror
Fluoride Free NZ report disingenuous – conclusion
Spotting Bad Science
October ’14 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
December ’14 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
The MH17 blame game
Science never claimed to know everything
Special pleading by Philippe Grandjean on fluoride
The inverted ethics of doxxing?
Fascinating and painless chemistry lessons
Did the Royal Society get it wrong about fluoridation?
“Do your own research!”
Dirty politics over MH17?
Cherry-picking and misinformation in Stan Litras’s anti-fluoride article
Today’s fantasy, tomorrow’s possibility
The farce of a “sciency” anti-fluoride report
November ’14 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Creationist ‘audits’ science museum
“Real” experts’ on climate change? Really?
Water fluoridation and dental fluorosis – debunking some myths
Proving anecdotes are reliable
Declan Waugh pushes another anti-fluoride myth
Severe dental fluorosis the real cause of IQ deficits?
Catch 22 in Ukraine
Let’s rely on anecdotes instead!
Standing up to junk science in New Zealand
Declan Waugh claims it’s “clear as day”
Unusual photo of Moon and Earth.
Criminal investigation of MH17 tragedy – where is it at?
There is something about those climate records that keep getting broken
Putting politicans in their place on climate change
Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 – what really happened?
Fluoridation – a racist conspiracy?
Curiosity’s historic comet photo
When science deniers turn to science
Fluoride debate: Second response to Rita Barnett-Rose – Daniel Ryan
Fluoride debate: Response to Daniel Ryan’s critique – Rita Bartlett-Rose
Fluoride debate: A response to Rita Barnett-Rose – Daniel Ryan
Fluoride debate: The scientific evidence against fluoridation – Rita F. Barnett
Another legal defeat for NZ anti-fluoridation activists
Anti-fluoridation propagandists promoting shonky “review”
How to change your Mind – and why it is good for you
The science and politics of climate change
Science and belief
September ’14 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Peer review of an anti-fluoride “peer review”
The information war – The NZ Listener takes up arms
MOM “a thousand times better than cricket”
Activist’s anti-science adverts found misleading – again
Don’t you get tired of this?
It’s time we did something about sugar
Crude dredging of the scientific literature
Anti-fluoride activists define kangaroo court as “independent”
MH17 – Preliminary report leaves most conspiracy theories intact
Do you prefer dental fluorosis or tooth decay?
Emotion Drives Decision
Ingested fluoride, dental health and old age
August ’14 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Sad news – Victor Stenger has died
Making money out of fanatics
Dirty politics on the Royal Society fluoride review
Review finds community water fluoridation safe and effective
Anti-fluoride activists unhappy about scientific research
The Mind of the Science Denier
Open letter to Jane Nielson – a “fluoridation convert.”
Accidental Renaissance – or intuition?
Tactics for science denial
Natural News comes out with a load of heavy metal rubbish on fluoride
July ’14 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Declan Waugh continues his distortion of Finnish fluoride research
Another fluoridation whopper from Declan Waugh
I am still waiting for my cheque
An answer to the anti-fluoride critics – in one image
Some answers to the confusion about the #MH17 crash site
Informed parents know water fluoridation is good for their children
Making political capital out of the deaths of innocents
Elected officials must ignore activists and listen to own voters
The irony of some peer-review and citation complaints
Ken Ring pontificates on climate change
Anti-science US Congressman on House science Committee!
“Creative” reporting of fluoridation science
What happens when fluoridation is stopped?
June ’14 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Controversial IQ study hammered in The Lancet
New group challenging the anti-science brigade
Fluoridation: what about reports it is ineffective?
Approaching scientific literature sensibly
Declan Waugh’s misinformation on fluorosilicic acid
A healthy attitude towards quantum mechanics
An open letter to Declan Waugh – new mechanism for fluoride toxicity?
Toxicity is in the dose or concentration of fluoride
Councils and scientists targeted by anti-fluoride activists
Lugansk – a modern Guernica?
Inna Kukuruza – “her eyes spoke to the whole world”
Connett’s hypocrisy on fluoride & IQ
May ’14 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Confirmation blindness on the fluoride-IQ issue
Where do teeth come from? The stork theory
There is research and there is “research”
Fluoridating water does not lower IQ – New Zealand research
Fluoride and IQ – once more
Another anti-fluoride myth in the making
A balanced debate
It’s all the fashion in Ukraine
Fluoridation: What a difference a year makes?
Wishart misrepresents fluoride science to advance his extreme ideology
Fluoridation: emotionally misrepresenting contamination
April ’14 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Peer review, shonky journals and misrepresenting fluoride science
Ingested fluoride is beneficial to dental health.
Anti-fluoridation advertising deceptive
Fluoridation: putting chemical contamination in context
The first victim!
An outdated tax anomaly – charitable status of relgion
Declan Waugh scaremongers over fluoride – again
Arrogance of ignorance?
Pandering to anti-fluoridation campaigners
International cooperation in space serving humanity
Is anyone listening?
March ’14 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Scientific cooperation despite political posturing
Fluoridation returns to Hamilton City.
European border changes over 5000 years
Dental fluorosis: badly misrepresented by FANNZ
What makes something right or wrong?
How do we know what is true?
Cherry-picking and ring-fencing the scientific literature
Fluoride and heart disease – another myth
Graphic information in science
Corporate backers of anti-fluoride movement lose in NZ High Court.
Terry Pratchett making sense
Fluoride and the 5 easy steps of a conspiracy theory
February ’14 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Pseudoscience in your supermarket
Another god debate
Repeating bad science on fluoride
Truth about those science fairs
Quality and selection counts in fluoride research
The precautionary principle
How can scientists use social media?
Curiosity sees a familiar “evening star.”
The fluoride debate – what do the experts say?
January ’14 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Entertainment is brain exercise
Download The Fluoride Debate
Determining scientific knowledge by petition
Fluoride debate: Final article – Ken Perrott
Fluoride debate: Paul Connett’s Closing statement
The good(?) old days of scientific writing
Most of us missed this one
False balance and straw clutching on fluoridation
Who is funding anti-fluoridation High Court action?
Astro-turfing for scientific credibility
Losing trust in religious leaders
Conspiracy theorists misuse analytical evidence
All things bright and beautiful
December ’13 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Fluoride debate: Ken Perrott’s closing response to Paul Connett?
Putting vaccination risks into context
Fluoride debate: Arguments Against Fluoridation Thread. Part 8. Paul
Alan Turing receives royal pardon
The true meaning of Christmas
Where is the heat going?
Fluoride debate: Response to Paul’s 5th article
Back to the moon!
Fluoride debate: Arguments Against Fluoridation Thread. Part 5. Paul
Census 2013 – religious diversity
Fluoride debate: Response to Paul’s 6th article.
Testing the God theory
Fluoridation debate: Against Fluoridation Thread. Part 6.
November ’13 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
‘The particle at the end of the universe’ wins Winton Prize
Fluoridation debate: Why I support fluoridation – 2nd reply to Connett
Psychics have it easy these days
Fluoride Debate: Why I support fluoridation – 2nd response from Connett
From dental neglect to child abuse?
Fluoride Debate: Why I support fluoridation – response to Connett
Fluoride debate: Why I support fluoridation – Response from Connett
Word of wisdom, and otherwise
Have local climate pseudosceptics come to the end of the road?
Fluoride debate: Why I support fluoridation
Sin is relative
Fluoride debate – I get email
Fluoride debate Part 1a – response to Connet’s response: Perrott
Fluoride debate – some housekeeping
Fluoride debate Part 1a – response: Connett
October ’13 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Fluoride debate Part 1: Perrott
Fluoride debate Part 1: Connett
The fluoride debate – introduction
The origins of ethics and violence
What’s really true?
Anti-fluoridation porkies – Mullinex’s rats
Science and faith
NZ climate change “sceptics” abandon appeal
Christianity has hijacked human values
Fluoridation: Hangout with the University of Waikato
The universe – it is bigger than you think
Our Far South – time we learned about it
Christian ethics and Peter Singer
Fluoride – friend or foe: a lecture
Cyber bullying of science
Fluoridation: the hip fracture deception
September ’13 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Tim Minchin – an inspirational speech to graduates
Jon Stewart interviews Richard Dawkins
Anatomy of an anti-fluoridation myth
NZ experts deplore anti-fluoridation misrepresentation of science
Helping kids to wonder
Fluoridation – the IQ myth
When politicians and bureaucrats decide the science
Welcome counter to scientific and health misinformation
New “evidence” for global cooling?
Phobos eclipses the sun – as seen by Curiosity
Dentists you can trust?
Activists peddle chemical misinformation for fluoridation referenda
August ’13 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Cherry picking fluoridation data
Anti-fluoridationist astro-turfing and media manipulation
Anti-fluoride activists attempt to silence science
Crazy ideas and “supernatural” phenomena
Experts speak out on fluoridation
Fluoride sensitivity – all in the mind?
Earthquakes and twitter
Cyber-bullying – what’s with sunscreen?
Anti-fluoridation study flawed – petition rejected
News media influences public trust in science
The “consensus message” in communicating science
Hamilton – the water is the problem, not the fluoride!
Topical confusion persists
Celebrate your curiosity – one year on
July ’13 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Is this the way to reorganise science?
The limits of science and a world record
Water treatment chemicals – why pick on fluoride?
Are you qualified to discuss God, Heaven and Hell?
The Galileo fallacy and denigration of scientific consensus
A new Cosmos
Michael Mann’s defamation lawsuit on track
Is fluoridated water a medicine?
Debunking anti-fluoridation myths
Source of moral authority has shifted
Fluoridation – an organised campaign to misinform.
Hamilton gets its fluoridation referendum
Not your usual rocket launch
Fluoridation – topical confusion
Communicating climate science – Michael Mann comments
Fluoridation and conspiracy theories
Richard Dawkins learns about the Bible
Fluoridation – the violation of rights argument.
June ’13 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
The victim mentality of conspiracy theorists
Poisoning the well with a caricature of science
Fluoridation petition – for Hamilton citizens
The importance of books for kids
Fluoridation – it does reduce tooth decay
Stop feeling guilty
Getting a grip on the science behind claims about fluoridation
Is fluoride an essential dietary mineral?
Will Hamiltonians finally get a voice on fluoridation?
Scientists, political activism and the scientific ethos
Fluoridation – are we dumping toxic metals into our water supplies?
When science is under attack
Tactics and common arguments of the anti-fluoridationists
Hamilton City Council reverses referendum fluoridation decision
Global warning in science fiction
May ’13 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Peter Singer on effective charity
The science of consciousness
Collapse of Arctic sea ice
An eReader breakthrough?
Singing about the periodic table
Black cat in a dark room – and the role of science
A New Zealand climate change pseudosceptic apologises!
Pseudosceptics are at it again – misrepresenting and attacking climate scientists
Chris Hadfield’s 5-month Space Mission in 90 Seconds
Confusion and distortion – has global warming stopped?
“Incontrovertible” is it, Rodney?
Video coverage of astronauts’ return to earth next Tuesday morning
A beggar’s market?
The limits of philosophy
April ’13 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
‘The Unbelievers’ and science
A global warming hoax meme is born – in New Zealand too!
Friday follies – what happened to the “official AGW hypothesis?”
Fiddling with census figures for religion in New Zealand
The beginning (of the universe) for beginners
Terrorism and the West’s obsession with oil
Marriage equality, retribution and moral progress
A sombre night in Boston
Moving into the mainstream – on the coat tails of the “New Atheists”
Thatcher, Monckton and Pinochet
Potty Peer in Waikato
New Zealand Blog ranking Montage
What is global temperature?
I was wrong about Lord Monckton
New “Hockey Stick” but same tired old denial
March ’13 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
April Fools and Agenda 21
Christchurch from space
A war between religion and science?
Climate contrarians/deniers are cherry picking again
Dishonesty of intelligent design “research”
Something for all those lapsed catholics
Dawkins’ new book
Our world from the International Space Station
Creationists prefer numerology to real scientific research
Talking sense about morality
Extreme confirmation bias in action
Greedy Lying Bastards
Those arguments against marriage equality
Census 2013: That religion question
Climate change is not simple
February ’13 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
A sensible Christian perspective on Peter Singer
No immutable truths, no eternal dogmas
Global climate – and your grandchildren
Entertaining – and the science is good
The truth about the hockey stick
Origins of religious ethics and violence
Sean Faircloth, Director of Richard Dawkins Foundation, visiting NZ
The Russian meteor – what we know
Should we be prepared?
Does religion blur understanding of evolution?
The “dynamic duo” of science?
A day for cheap shots
Science as the best, possibly only, way to truth
The reality of cancer
Education should never validate ignorance
“Divine commands” and personal conscience
January ’13 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Is your region warming?
No cause for alarm – if you cherry pick
The political alarmism behind climate change denial
Can philosophers, or anyone, tell us what is “right” and “wrong”?
History of science – for Kiwis
What a shock!
Who is guilty of misusing science?
Deconstructing climate change, and its deniers
Amazing photos of Shuttle Endeavour flight deck
Australia’s “New Normal?”
Going beyond the evidence
A time for hypocrisy
Historians and sociologists just as human as scientists
December ’12 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
A problem with logic
Historians and sociologists lecture scientists – about science
Wonders of Life coming – we hope
A dose of reality
Pulling the wool over the eyes of the faithful
Scientists and philosophers discuss morality and meaning
Christmas present from NASA
At last – Moving Naturalism Forward videos
Getting the Book Invented
Sense on evolutionary psychology.
Does science have a cognitive privilege?
Sceptical humility and peer review in science
Cancer – an emotional rollercoaster
Sceptical arrogance and evolutionary psychology
And now for a bit of drama
Agreement polar ice sheets are melting
November ’12 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Regarding women as animals
Christmas present for nerds – what about science books?
Time for philosophical honesty about Darwin
Religion in schools – a sensible approach
Climate change deniers don’t understand expertise
The arrogance of supernatural privilege
Morality and non-human animals
More damage from megastorm Sandy
Capturing kid’s minds with emotions
That particle again
Who were Stalin’s victims?
Reports from the Moving Naturalism Forward workshop
The elephant in the US elections
October ’12 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Sex, Death And The Meaning Of Life. Episode 3: Meaning
Who are these “credible experts”?
The mini-iPad and original sin
Death – part 2 of a series
Beer, anxiety and depression – their origins
Why (some) Christians support discrimination
Sex, Death And The Meaning Of Life – Sin
Moving Naturalism Forward
A concise summary of climate change – science and politics
From evolution to belief
Are you offended yet?
This has to stop
Sneaking in the magic man
Naturalism and science are incompatible
None so blind
A Kiwi makes it to Mars!
September ’12 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
The most important place you didn’t know about
A useful map of the human body
The paradoxes of theological gullibility
The internet – Yeah, right!
US air traffic on a typical day and on September 11, 2001
Finish the sentence . . .
People saying stupid things on the Internet
Another anti-science attack on Mann fails – but the lies continue
Secularism – its internal problems
Politics and economics of Arctic ice loss
Internet silos become ideological ghettos
Climate change denier’s false “deep distress” fools no-one
Changing that light bulb while in denial
High Court ruled on integrity – not science
New Zealand climate change denial defeated
I don’t know!
Making giant flowers out of fireworks
Moral evolution in today’s society
August ’12 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Drifting moral values
Subjective morality – not what it seems?
Objective or subjective laws and lawgivers
Neil Armstrong by Buz Aldrin
The science philosophy “conflict”
Making sense of religion, science, and morality
Kiwi science fiction with a message
Science – the greatest story ever told
A sundial on Curiosity?
Scientific shift work
Cynical evangelisation of children
Curiosity requires patience
Going for gold – on Mars
A load of science
July ’12 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
NZ Blog Rankings FAQ
So scientism = non-theism?
Saying it with flowers
What really happens in religious instruction classes?
What Is Life? From Schrödinger to Watson to Venter
Their mission – values or advancement of religion?
The story behind the High Court action
Ethical enquiry or moral instruction?
Scepticism, denial and the high court
William Lane Craig’s philosophy – the condensed version
So you think science has a problem?
Peter Singer on the misrepresentation of Peter Singer
Human values are secular
End of life decisions
Why the Higgsteria?
Cost of scientific research – and political naivity
The creationism controversy – a summary
Is there room for religion in science?
June ’12 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Scientific knowledge should trump “belief”
Seven Minutes of Terror
Australian census confirms healthy trend
Science is messy – for girls too!
Print-on-demand books – what’s the hold-up?
How to write a best-seller!
Sharp increase in “nones”
A disciplined discussion
What did Galileo ever do to you?
Gnu bashing once again
The prejudiced journalist
Do atheists need religion?
Mixing values and Jesus in secular education
The Scamtific Method
May ’12 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Scientific knowledge – reliable but not certain
Weather extremes and climate change
“Web monkeys” and science presentation
Dementia – There’s an app for that!
Give them enough rope . . .
Why won’t Inland Revenue subsidise my life expenses?
Human morality is evolving
So you’re considering switching to eBooks?
Welcome to the Anthropocene
Naturalism in science
“Lose” your faith, gain your life?
What’s in store for eBook readers
Heartland ignorant of public relations – let alone science
Belief and morality
What has science ever done for us?
April ’12 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
The problem with philosophy
Puddles and “fine-tuning”
Great science talks in Auckland
Science denial is a diversion from the real problems
When the “best explanation” is the worst explanation
Toss out the moderator for a better discussion
Jesus heals – but not cancer!
Emotional time for Shuttle fans
Catholic popes victims of sexual abuse!
Who is committing fraud here?
Morality and the “worship” of reason
The silliness of a self-proclaimed “investigative journalist”
Moral behavior in animals
Conservatives, liberals and purity
The trouble with physics?
Is God incredible – or what?
Science and the folly of faith
March ’12 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Another lousy photo of the sun?
The Sand Creatures
A fuzzy photo of the sun
The “public square” myth
Yes, please try this at home!
Whanganui District Council comes to senses
“Good faith” science – and its enemies
Climate change controversy in context
Shy climate denier in “science team” reveals himself.
The chickens are hatching
February ’12 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
The size of things
Theological pretzel twisting
A universe in an eBook (or app)
Souvenirs for scientists
Heartland Insitute gets mail
Heartland’s climategate – and Mann’s book
Bioluminescence in space!
Defeat for imposed prayer
ID research and publications
Theological mental gymnastics over evolution
“What, me worry?” – distorting climate change data
Free will – problems of definition
January ’12 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
The scientific method – what about the philosophical method?
In the front lines of the “climate wars”
Who is funding the climate change denial groups?
Our fingerprints are all over it!
The [in]compatibility of science and religion
Comprehending reality – Should we give up so easily?
Nothing is something
Who drives the science/religion conflict?
Choosing your religion
Open letter across the barricade
New book formats
The argument from authority (or lack thereof)
December ’11 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Peter Jackson – Satan’s Little Helper”
“Other ways of knowing” and their result.
Slaughtering some sacred seasonal cows
Reacting to a death with respect and hatred
Christmas present ideas: This Hell would be useful!
Higgs and homeopathy
Christmas gift ideas: Aussie wisdom
Christmas gift ideas: The human mind – a history
Christmas gift ideas: Evolution of gods, morals and violence
Christmas gift ideas: Working on Mars
Christmas gift ideas: One for the kids
Christmas gift ideas: Why we deny climate change
Christmas gift ideas: Thinking of our grandchildren
Christmas gift ideas: How We Know What’s Really True
Christmas gift ideas: Kids – it’s OK to be different!
A debunking handbook provides lessons in science communication
November ’11 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Finding out about the astronomers who found the universe
Climategate 2.0 and “toecurling” journalism
It’s crowded up there
Creative science writing
Royal Society’s science book of year Winton Prize winner.
Reclaiming ‘intelligent design’
A lesson in human logic
Is Keith Ward really that naive about science?
Demolishing Craig on morality
Cultural effect of The Big Bang Theory
Answer simple question – win an iPad
New Zealand in good company. Pity about the USA
October ’11 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
What’s your number?
Concern over William Lane Craig’s justification of biblical genocide
Outsourcing moral decisions to justify genocide
New Zealand happy – some preachers upset!
The never ending battle
Having it both ways
Ranking human conflicts and tyrannies
Dawkins responds to a stalker – Craig gets his debate
Avoiding possible catastrophe – even if you are confused
You CAN be good with God!
Big money behind local climate change deniers?
Historians of science sometimes miss the wood for the trees
Approaching morality scientifically
Ethicists have problems with ethics!
The climate change denial machine
How do you know that?
How We Know What’s Really True
Problems with pdf eBooks – metadata issues
September’11 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Compulsory payments for advancement of religion – let’s get rid of that.
Some recent recommended science books
Art in science
Where have we been?
Rings around Uranus
William Lane Craig’s “logic”
Science and the “supernatural”
Empathy for colleagues
Approaching a Middle East peace
Atheists aren’t shrill – just disgusting?
What’s this about cosmic rays and global warming?
Making life from the primordial soup
A fight-back – or simply spite?
Evolution and education – advice for teachers
That’s what I like to see in a young woman!
A reminder of reality’s magic
August ’11 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Religious theology of secularism
Martydom of the priveliged
Another book for the kids
Secular democracy and its critics
2012 Global Atheist Convention – Melbourne
Hitler objects to atheist charge
440 FOI requests in one day! From one person!
There is something about Wellington
Some things for the kids
The blinkered view of politics?
I get email
NZ blog rankings update
Is Monckton good value?
The reality of scientific research
Monckton messes own nest
July ’11 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Videos on morality
Pat Churchland on the science of morality
Breivik’s terrorism and science
Terror in Norway
Atlantis returns home – viewed from ISS
Background Briefing for Mockton’s NZ visit
Science has the real debate
Bias in the history of science
Seven years of discovery
Your chance for a free book
That hacking scandal
Are scientists hostile to religion?
Galileo’s modern critics
Debates in the philosophy of science
Does science lead to secularism?
June ’11 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Personal attacks on climate scientists
A silver lining to Expelled?
Galileo’s revolutionary contribution
Science, religion and respect for meaning
Protecting yourself against bullshit
Clarifying some myths in the history of science
Early history of science
Converting beliefs to “truths”
Ideology and violence
Painless science writing
May ’11 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Waking from a coma!
American Imams supporting evolutionary science
A secular bible
Daniel Dennett on conflict between religion and science
Visible signs of the rapture
The Magic of Reality for young people
Don’t drink the punch!
Working on Mars
A non-theist feast down under!
The chances of Royal Weddings arising randomly…
Designer spin II
What’s special about religious “knowledge?”
Climate change lectures in Auckland
April ’11 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Exposing the pretense of Christian unity
Is there a role for science in morality?
Philosophical justifications for morality
Answering questions on morality
Problems with philosophers and theologians
More on the science of morality
Selling the family silver!
Craig brings some clarity to morality?
Foundations of human morality.
Church rejects power of prayer!
Limits of logic
Something to celebrate
Advocating or explaining secular moral values?
March ’11 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
What is Life? Another Great Debate
The Galileo myths
Beauty, mystery and science
Christianity gave birth to science – a myth?
The implausibility of reality
Is atheism bad for science?
Myths within a myth
Thank goodness for eBook Readers
Theistic science? No such thing
The ethics of exploitation
Blogging for New Zealand
Science Under Attack?
Acceptance of science – dangerous for some
Making sense of Ring gate?
February ’11 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
From “Grand Design” to “On Being”
A human response to Christchurch quake
Alan Turing documentary
Taking the census seriously
The future of books – and Santa?
On being philosophical about science
The secular Egyptian protest a good start for a successful revolution
Shonky climate-change denial “science”
Reinterpretation “research” on climate change
A hymn for Darwin Day
Celebrating Alan Turing’s life and achievements
The scientific study of religion
January ’11 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Converging evidence on climate change
eBook “singles” – and the problems
Marie Curie Lecture Series – 2011
Comparing blog visit statistics
Shoddy reporting on “god genes”
The god gene – or is it a meme?
Certainty is useless – a scientific concept
The nature of the science-religion conflict?
“Other ways of knowing” – some sense at last
Culture and the scientific renaissance
Sharing a chemical moment
The moon and the ISS
Secular News Daily – useful source
New views of eclipses
Deriving “ought from is” scientifically?
December ’10 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Science and morality – a panel discussion
A physicist comments on science and morality
A philosopher comments on science and morality
Telling right from wrong – unreligiously
Another local climate change denial meme
Wine and the Watchtower
It’s that time of the year
A handy app for your iPhone, iPod touch or iPad
A philosopher’s Christmas present
Painted into a corner?
Real science – warts and all
WikiLeaks and climategate
2011 – International Year of Chemistry
The “You Can’t Trust Science!” agenda
NASA and old lace
November ’10 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Cutting off your nose for Christmas?
“Other ways of knowing” purpose?
What is the problem?
A victory for secular ethics
The Hitchens – Dembski debate
The joys of eBook readers – the Sony PRS-650 Touch
Secularism is important
Dawkins answers questions
Telling right from wrong?
Can science shape human values?
Some book ideas
The ISS – a decade of growth
October ’10 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
The human mind – a history
Check out those climate change claims on the internet
Waking up to morality
Four signs of a stroke
Can the “supernatural” be of any use?
Are ebooks taking off?
Some pesky delusions
Strident, militant atheists?
Why we deny climate change
Attitudes will change. Life will get better
Your computer is the enemy!
Death by stoning for adultery!
Scientific misconduct and skepticgate
Breaking away – an interesting case study
Sam Harris on The Daily Show
Move over – old fellow!
Hawking’s grand design – lessons for apologists?
Arrested moral development.
September ’10 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Treating statistics sensibly
Not about Einstein
Bus adverts a human rights issue
Check out your ancestors
Trust the experts – if they say what we want
The Bible – a book review
A scientific consensus on human morality
Pope Benny’s speech – graphically
Putting the Pope in his place
Popes cunning straw mannery?
Human Evolution and the Organ of Mind
Mind change – a moral choice?
Putting the IPCC in its place?
Mapping modern science
An unnecessary being?
What is matter? What is materialism?
New science blogs in New Zealand
The Grand Design – neither God nor 42
Earth and Moon from Mercury
The Challenge of the Human Brain
August ’10 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Fallout from Hauser affair spreads
A lesson for NZ critics of climate science?
Nicholas Stern to present Robb Lectures
So you want a conversation?
The myth of the noble scientist
The heart of PZ Myers
After NIWA, God?
Marc Hauser replies – acknowledges mistakes
Hauser misconduct investigation – Full text of Dean’s statement
Fallacy of Fine Tuning
A desperate plea to be noticed?
A stormy future?
A sympathetic take on Marc Hauser and the “scientific misconduct” issue
A paper by Marc Hauser retracted – Harvard Magazine
Climate change is complex
A nice little tool for printing blog posts
“God of the surprises”
Recognising good science bloggers and Big Blog Theory winners
It’s politics, not science
July ’10 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Suzan does a mini- Monckton
Evolution of gods, morals and violence
Is and ought
The new science of morality
Science, faith and limits of knowledge
Liability of scientific denialism to political conservativism
Evolution and the Holocaust
Life on the building site
Theological critiques of billboards required
Support John Abraham against Monckton’s bullying
Ways of not knowing
The changing face of science communication
A regular climate science podcast
Climategate – Journalist withdraws and apologises
Making room for faith in science?
Getting straight on marriage
“Climategate” smears found false – Mann cleared
NZ Atheists Swap Buses For Billboards
June ’10 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Religion in public life – two approaches
Ridiculing ridiculous science commentary
Truth getting it’s boots on!
A question of expertise and credibility
Climate scientist’s’ register?
Kids – it’s OK to be different!
Twinning with Venus
Avoiding grown-up discussion
A competition for Aussie science blogs
Apologies would be nice
Historic shuttle launch photos
Australians concerned about tax exemption for cults
Pseudoscience and anti-science nonsense
Science on New Zealand TV
Hot science blogs
May ’10 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Journalists create world’s first artificial news story!
Don’t trust Monckton!
This is scary!
Theological intrusions into science
God, stop ‘playing science’
Why Don’t We Go To Church?
The heart of opposition to climate science
Last chance – almost!
What’s that about global cooling?
Are you threatened by clarity?
Supporting good science communication
We don’t know!
Monckton and Shimkus get silly together
The Dawkins Delusions
Climate change and the integrity of science
Secularism in Australia and New Zealand
Natural selection or domestication?
April ‘10 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Thinking of our grandchildren
Science, values and ethics
Avoiding tax – supernaturally
Climate scientist sues newspaper for false reporting
Climategate, Lord Monckton and Monty Python
Climate change deniers wallets threatened
Climategate summed up
Superstition – inevitable?
Libel Reform campaign continues
RIP Antony Flew
Officially a fake scandal from science perspective
Dangerous science denial
You have to laugh!
A more transparent approach
Orbital debris, the ISS, moon and sun
A space nerd’s Easter
Getting to the truth – gradually
March ‘10 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Climate scientist Phil Jones exonerated
The origins of science?
The rickety bandwagon of climate change denial
Are religious scientists worried about their brethren?
The climate change denial industry
Can science answer moral questions?
Periodic Table of of science blogs
Creationism, climate change and scientific denialism
Open Letter from U.S. Scientists on the IPCC
From Melbourne to Copenhagen
Are science and religion compatible?
Chris Mooney interviews Michael Mann on “climategate”
Science bloggers talk teaching
Great photo of the Solar Corona
Clear science communication
Institute of Physics in hot seat
Climate science for you and me
February ’10 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
Richard Dawkins – wrong again!
Freedom of information and responsibility
This game looks familiar
Anti-science lies being exposed – slowly
Deniers distort Phil Jones
New Zealand has bigots too
Belief and social identity
Etiquette for the office global warming denier
NZ blogs sitemeter ranking – February ‘10
Climate change confusion – a conspiracy of sorts
WARNING! People might find us out!
One for the kids
Get your climate change science on the run
Can science solve all problems?
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I can see another Harvard study scenario coming up, Try to give it some credibility by Association, I bet they dont say who started it. Their mate Micheal “joe bloggs ‘ Connett
“many of the studies included exposure to high levels of fluoride. Most of the human evidence was from fluoride-endemic regions having high background levels of fluoride,”
As with elections “most” or “majority” means over half. Of course there are lots of studies when people are obviously sick. That should not take weight away from the subset with lower levels.
“For fluoride-endemic areas, there was a strong suggestion that high levels of naturally occurring fluoride in water (> 1.5 ppm) may be associated with negative health effects, including lowering of IQ. In general, these studies were considered of low quality because they did not fully account for other factors that could also cause a lowering of IQ e.g., nutritional status, socioeconomic status, iodine deficiency,…”
Dishonest since cannot use results of sufficient iodine areas for iodine deficiency groups which exist in pregnancy and for the many who escape the supplementation programs for various reasons.
“other chemicals in the ground water (arsenic or lead).” Nor did Broadbent for their 99 control subjects. Corrosion control came in with fluoridation in Dunedin, and unfluoridated Mosgiel where control subjects may have lived did not get corrosion control until 1990s/early 2000 upgrade. It was aimed at copper/brass corrosion and brass taps often have lead with the copper and zinc alloy which brass is.
The IQ studies Connettâs crowd rely on were almost all from areas of endemic fluorosis. Of course the Broadbent study wasnât â and is probably the only study relevant to CWF.
I think the systematic review will find all the studies Connett relies on are of very poor quality. In fact the only one which included a correlation found fluoride contributes only a very small amount to the variance in IQ. This suggests confounding factors are very important and makes studies which donât properly include these (none of the ones by Connett do) very suspect.
The statement about the studies is factual. For you to call it âdishonestâ Brian, only shows how biased you are. You are going to be one of the first to reject the findings of this review, I predict.
Broadbent found no effect of F on IQ so resorting to bitching about confounding factors is really lame. You have to perform quite a bit of mental gymnastics to drag that argument in. Broadbent actually did including many possible confounding factors in their statistical analysis â the Chinese studies Connett relies did not include any of these in a similar proper statistical analysis.
“(This is/This may be/This may not be/This isn’t) Dishonest since (I/we/you/they/he/she) cannot use (the/any/many/none) (of the/of any/of many/of any of the) results of (in) sufficient iodine (supplemented) (intake) areas for iodine deficiency groups which (may/may not) exist in pregnancy and for the many (others/groups/societies) who (may/may not) escape…”
Please complete your sentences so that we know exactly what you are saying and do not have to make any assumptions or guesses.
Clarity in science has major benefits. In contrast, obfuscation tends to make readers ignore papers or comments.
I totally agree.
To argue (I think) that the Chinese papers are more accurate because they did not include confounding factors, and that Broadbent’s paper is inaccurate because confounding factors were considered, is contrary to all I understand about statistics and populations.
So Broadbent didn’t include all possible confounding factors. Interesting.
No, Pete – it would be impossible to include the infinite number of logically possible confounding factors in a statistical analysis. But Broadbent et al did include the relevant ones.
In contrast, the studies that the “Connett crowd” rely on did not include any other factors at all in the very few regression analyses they performed. The data from Xiang showing that F contributed only 3% to the variance in IQ is a strong indicator that ither factors are involved – F can ony be a very minor factor and once the others are considered it is most likely it would not contribite anything to the variance in IQ at all.
Pete, that’s correct. For one thing Broadbent et al did not take into account the iodide in drinking water difference between Otago and other parts of NZ. So even *if* it works for Otago its findings cannot be applied in Canterbury.
Those unfortunates who miss optimum iodine from supplementation would be likely to be worse of from fluoridation if it were imposed on Canterbury.
Ken keeps on repeating the Xiang 3% explanation of fluoride on IQ, and I keep on repeating that Xiang’s study was done by removing the confounding iodine factor by having the study only compare iodine-sufficient communities. That is not a reality for NZ.
I wrote: “Corrosion control came in with fluoridation in Dunedin, and unfluoridated Mosgiel where control subjects may have lived did not get corrosion control until 1990s/early 2000 upgrade.”
Stuartg is criticising my use of “may”.
Broadbent did not specify the unfluoridated suburbs except to say: “However, suburbs
with CWF were mostly located in central Dunedin,
and those without CWF were satellite suburbs.”
Mosgiel is an unfluoridated suburb of Dunedin.
I got this from the Dunedin CC water engineer:
“From memory, the DCC used to have to monitor lead levels in the main Metropolitan distribution system watermains up until the late 1990’ earlier 2000’s due to the corrosiveness of the water coming from the Mt Grand and Southern water treatment plants. These were and are fluoridated though. Following an outbreak of accelerated premature copper hot water cylinder failures, a lot of work was put into optimising the treatment process including pH and alkalinity control to reduce the corrosiveness of the water. Work over many years on corrosion control has meant that the DCC were allowed by the regulator to cease lead monitoring.
The one non-fluoridated area where corrosion control treatment system upgrade work occurred was in Mosgiel. The problem being targeted was corrosion of copper pipes and brass fittings. Lead was not seen as a problem although some would have been released from corroded brass fittings. Once again the new treatment systems were installed in the 1990’s and up graded again in the early 2000’s.
Other outlying systems which feature corrosion control treatment processes are Outram, West Taieri, Waikouaiti & Port Chalmers. The small Outram plant has had corrosion control in place since it was built by the old County Council. The West Taieri and Waikouaiti WTPs were upgraded about 7 years ago and both plants feature pH and alkalinity control systems. I note that the Port Chalmers plant is only run over the system to assist the supply from Mt Grand.
I’m sorry I don’t recall the precise dates.”
I do think Broadbent should have obtained the old lead data.
My criticism was about the lack of clarity in your comments. Without knowing what you meant I was not in a position to do anything else.
No-one but yourself has mentioned Mosgiel.
The concern that using fluorosilicate additives to fluoridate drinking water causes water system pipes to corrode is not supported by science. At the level recommended by the U.S. Public Health Service for fluoridation of public water supplies (0.7 to 1.2 mg/L, or parts per million), the fluoride ion has little influence on either corrosion or on the amounts of corroded metals released into the water. Fluorosilicates contribute to better water stability with less potential for corrosion, because silica stabilizes the pipe surface.
CDC. Corrosion in Pipes
Brian, you are indulging in extreme straw clutching in an attempt to discredit Broadbent’s high-quality work, while at the same time putting extreme faith in Lin’s newsletter article which is of poor quality.
Xiang did not “remove” any confounding factors all – and didn’t check for any (although I suspect he probably could have). Connett is silly to claim otherwise – simply determining average values for a village is not the same as a multiple regression. Connett makes a big thing of the significant correlation of IQ with urinary F (never revealing it explains only 3% of the variance. But, in fact, Xiang did not do any multiple regressions, let alone include I as a factor. So he did not check for confounding factors in his regression at all.
If a community suffers from I deficiency then the obvious answer is to increase dietary I – not pretend it is caused by something else.
chris price: “The concern that using fluorosilicate additives to fluoridate drinking water causes water system pipes to corrode is not supported by science.”
There is a concern about leaving water too acid when its going to be fluoridated. So the acidity is reduced by the engineer.
As the engineer said the Mt Grand and Southern water treatment plants had to have that corrosion control. There had been lead in the water until then. They kept on doing lead measurements on Dunedin water, it appears, until the corrosion control was added to the non-fluoridated water, too, around 2000.
So the subjects who were now adult and had grown up in non-fluoridated areas would have likely been exposed to more lead so Broadbent should have noted that.
So now we have the Masters and Coplan paper and the Hirtzy comment quiety as evidence,And then blame the Broadbent paper for not pursuing it. If you want to quote a paper why not do it
Could it be that these papers were not valid evidence,and were revoked by Urbanskey and Schock
The EPA similarly found that Hirzy’s claim that fluorosilicic acid caused leaching of lead from pipes in the water supply system was similarly unproved”
Ken wrote: “Xiang did not “remove” any confounding factors all – and didn’t check for any”
Xiang’s iodine levels were Wamiao: 280.70 ± 87.16; Xinhuai: 300.96 ± 92.88.
That is more than the sufficiency level for iodine suggested in this FAO report, so it would be expected for fluoride to have less effect. And it would not be up to the level where high iodine starts to produce thyroid trouble exacerbated by fluoride.
By not measuring in a low iodide area Xiang has avoided that confounding factor.
“Moulopoulos et al. (21) reported that a urinary iodine excretion between 151 and 200 µg/g creatinine (1.18-1.57 mmol/g creatinine), corresponding to a concentration of about 200 µg/l (1.57 mmol/l), gave the lowest values for serum TSH in a non-goitrous population” http://www.fao.org/docrep/004/y2809e/y2809e0i.htm
chris price: “So now we have the Masters and Coplan paper and the Hirtzy comment quiety as evidence,And then blame the Broadbent paper for not pursuing it.”
chris you have got it back to front.
I am not saying fluoridation increases lead in water. The opposite because of the incidental effect that the engineer reduces the acidity when doing fluoridation.
I am saying the FLUORIDATED areas in Broadbent’s experiment would most likely have had LESS LEAD, therefore an IQ ADVANTAGE.
Ken wrote: “If a community suffers from I deficiency then the obvious answer is to increase dietary F – not pretend it is caused by something else.”
I think you mean “increase dietary I”.
Indeed and do not increase dietary F until you are sure pregnancies &c are protected, which we are not in NZ.
Ken wrote: “If a community suffers from I deficiency then the obvious answer is to increase dietary F – not pretend it is caused by something else.”
There is a difference between caused and exacerbated. Fluoride the exacerbater is not problem when there is no low iodine to exacerbate.
The fact remains, Brian, that Xiang did not check for any confounding factors in his regression – none at all, despite Connett’s claim. And clearly there was a good range of I values to enable inclusion in a multiple regression. (Most probably if that had been included, and perhaps a few more other factors, the relationship with F would have been non-significant).
You are relying on a poor quality paper (where there was no significant correlation shown with I) to postulate that a poor relationship with F is explained by I. You are doing the same with Pb for Broadbent’s paper. All this is extremely speculative and defensive. Go ahead and produce data to support you spurious claims – but until then your ideas are no better than all the manipulations introduced into the geocentric solar system model to explain its failures. And they are evidence free.
You are putting lipstick on a pig. And accusing reputable researchers of dishonesty when their summary of the literature embarrasses you.
Then, Brian, stop driving too fast or too slow. And donât be surprised when a cop stops you if he laughs when you blame fluoride from your transgressions speedwise.
I don’t think it is only a pig. But pigs ought to be treated better anyway. Typical business-science. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Gestcrate01.jpg
Ken: “Then, Brian, stop driving too fast or too slow. And donât be surprised when a cop stops you if he laughs when you blame fluoride from your transgressions speedwise.”
Laugh it off when you can’t argue, eh?
Maybe I have been on an iodine-short diet and then moved to a fluoridated area. So I am not so good at decision-making.
In my analogy unless the iodine can be got correct, don’t drive then fluoride won’t be able to cause a decision-making speed trouble.
Sure if I am not driving at all I won’t be driving too fast or too slow.
Let’s go back to how I used the word, “dishonest,” as I smile back at you with that word you have used against me.
I quoted and wrote: ““For fluoride-endemic areas, there was a strong suggestion that high levels of naturally occurring fluoride in water (> 1.5 ppm) may be associated with negative health effects, including lowering of IQ. In general, these studies were considered of low quality because they did not fully account for other factors that could also cause a lowering of IQ e.g., nutritional status, socioeconomic status, iodine deficiency,…”
Dishonest since cannot use results of sufficient iodine areas for iodine deficiency groups which exist in pregnancy and for the many who escape the supplementation programs for various reasons.”
Well perhaps only mistaken.
They give the impression the IQ trouble was only a result of low iodine in that case, therefore fluoride is just great for everyone.
They are not scientific if they are just two-valued, “it’s not fluoride caused low IQ, it’s low iodide.”
There is a third factor that the halides, fluoride and iodide, may be dancing with one another, and one may fall over.
“the halides, fluoride and iodide, may (or may not – my addition) be dancing with one another,…”
So may, or may not, the fluorides chloride, bromide and astatide. You didn’t mention them.
The concentration of chlorides in tap water overwhelmes the concentration of fluorides and iodides. If there was a clinically relevant interaction between the halides in tap water then chloride would overwhelm the rest because of its concentration.
So why are you not challenging chlorides? Or bromides? Or astatides? I suspect that it’s because there is no reliable evidence that any of the halides (including fluoride and iodide) cause problems in humans at the levels found in tap water.
“Dishonest since cannot…”
Can you please complete the sentence properly? So that we understand what you mean?
Do you mean that you are being dishonest since you cannot…? Or are you saying someone else is dishonest? Clarity has benefit in science. Obfuscation doesn’t.
I suspect the complete sentence is “(I am being) dishonest since (I) cannot use (the) results of sufficient iodine (supplementation) areas for (extrapolation to) iodine deficiency groups…
Feel welcome to correct me if I’m wrong with my interpretation of your sentence (among others), but in doing so, please do not miss out words that clarify your meaning.
Low iodine intake is proven to reduce IQ, as you have pointed out previously.
People are challenging your assertion that high fluoride in the presence of low iodide increases reduction in IQ.
The (poor) evidence suggests there may, or may not, be a correlation.
You are asserting a causation.
Correlation does not imply causation.
Possible correlation most certainly does not mean causation.
Stuartg wrote: “People are challenging your assertion that high fluoride in the presence of low iodide increases reduction in IQ.”
What about how greater than optimum fluoride compounds a high iodide problem?
This article allows a 2 page “look inside.”
It is dealing with greater fluoride levels, but I cite it since a mechanism is appearing. At the end of the second page it says the fluoride is not affecting TSH, made by the pituitary gland when it wants more thyroid hormones T3 and T4 to be made, but is reducing T3 and T4. The pituitary should then be responding but it isn’t. Is it that what fluoride is doing is making something which looks to the pituitary like T3 and T4?
Fluorine getting involved with the thyroid hormones. I hope this goes to p367. Some of the compounds have activities but much less strong, either thyroxine like or anti-thyroxine. On the track?
Stuartg wrote: “I suspect the complete sentence is “(I am being) dishonest since (I) cannot use (the) results of sufficient iodine (supplementation) areas for (extrapolation to) iodine deficiency groups…”
I shall extend on my “note form” comment. As I said to Ken he sometimes calls me dishonest.
I quoted: “For fluoride-endemic areas, there was a strong suggestion that high levels of naturally occurring fluoride in water (> 1.5 ppm) may be associated with negative health effects, including lowering of IQ. In general, these studies were considered of low quality because they did not fully account for other factors that could also cause a lowering of IQ e.g., nutritional status, socioeconomic status, iodine deficiency,…”
Those two sentences could be (mistakenly?) read as meaning in part that when the scientists did not fully account for iodine deficiency, their studies would be low quality, meaning that IQ would probably not be being lowered by the fluoride >1.5 ppm. Though they have not actually said that.
Now they have said, “also cause,” and some readers may think they mean, “instead cause.” Though I am stretching that a bit. “Also’ is often used like “instead” in such expression. So I won’t dwell on that.
Now as I pointed out about Xiang’s study, they held iodine optimum, and they got very little effect of fluoride consequently. Is that the sort of study which THE PROPOSAL intends? If it is then the results of the study should not be applied to populations without optimum iodine. To me that looks very wrong to spend the study money proving fluoridation is OK for a hypothetical group, and leaving out important groups like pregnancy and people who keep off bread if gluten intolerant and salt if they have blood pressure. I used the word “dishonest,” and if it is not dishonest I think it needs defending at least. Pregnancy is a time when brains are forming.
They do not actually exclude the concept of possible interaction between fluoride and iodide as a low IQ cause, but they are implying in my view that whatever is happening, if it is low iodide then they can happily forget about it. To me it gives the impression that their minds may be made up already.
Better than what I wrote in note form?:
“Dishonest since cannot use results of sufficient iodine areas for iodine deficiency groups which exist in pregnancy and for the many who escape the supplementation programs for various reasons.”
Brian – No, they didnât say that, and yes you are stretching it (more than) a bit.
No, Xiang did not âhold iodine optimum.â They did not manipulate the I at all â accepting the values as they were. These values covered quite a range but they did not include I in their regression (possibly because to do so would have removed any significance from the slight correlation with urinary F.
You should read the proposal â of course they are not intending to replicate a study like Xiangâs or anyone elseâs. They will simply be reviewing such papers, establishing their problems and quality, and making an overall assessment from this review and their similar review of animal studies. They also plan to fill in some gaps with animal studies (mainly the lack of anything covering low concentrations) although commenters were rather cynical about what that would achieve because of difficulties.
I find it interesting you are putting so much faith in Linâs newsletter article of one and a bit pages. You have nothing else for your rants about iodine/fluoride (except one or 2 equally bad studies from China). Your idol Paul Connett actually refuses to base his claims in that paper but relies instead on Xiangâs papers which he thinks far more reliable. It is also interesting that you acknowledge Xiang actually found very little correlation with F â yet if you used the same criteria as you do with Lin (pointing to the significant difference in IQ of two villages) you would be supporting Connett on this. The regression analysis of Xiang convinces you that the effect of F is miniscule and possibly not real. Lin did not find any correlation with F in the one regression analysis they did (or at least didnât report one).
In contrast, you found a correlation (with a correlation coefficient of 1.0!) â but then again you used just 2 data points! I was going to say that not even Paul Connett is that stupid â but actually that is exactly what anybody is doing who simply relies on a significant difference in IQ between 2 villages and that is exactly what Connett does with his use of the poor quality Chinese studies.
To Make matters worse, we would not be discussing these Chinese articles were it not for the fact that a politically and ideologically motivated body hinted down the papers, translated them and made them available in their pet âscientificâ journal. If only all the obscure Chinese, Byelorussian, Ukrainian, North Korean, etc., papers could be made available to us in this way.
Then again, the only really reliable paper not âdiscoveredâ in this way â Broadbent et al â does not fit the motivations of this group and so must be coindemned.
Ken wrote: “No, they didnât say that”
I copied it from what you wrote the paper also said.
Ken wrote: “No, Xiang did not âhold iodine optimum.â They did not manipulate the I at all â accepting the values as they were. These values covered quite a range”
By not looking for groups displaying the usual range of normal, low and high iodine segments they were manipulating the I, in my viewpoint. Like a lawyer challenging which jury members.
Referring back to Lin FF, I have found possible brick tea drinking by children in West China. The graph of fluorosis vs mg/kg intake is not a straight line but has a rather sudden jump or change of slope. It is possible that the strong tea, if they drink it, brings the children closer to the jump, so smaller amounts in water could take them up the jump.
I am looking for more data on serum fluoride levels and how they drop, or vary over 24 hour depending on frequency of tea consumption, frequency of water consumption, frequency of toothpaste ingestion, or absorption in the mouth. Just the total daily dose I do not think would be adequate to use in studies. Things need to change in human metabolism. For example, in eating, starch is mixed with salivary enzymes in the mouth and begins to be converted. When the food goes to the stomach it dilutes the acid and the salivary enzymes can only work until the stomach replaces the acid over an hour or so. So I wonder if the body can cope with constant fluoride intake or whether variation is needed. When it is in water that is not so possible. Mouth absorption needs more study, too.
You said this – not me. It is dishonest and does not represent the proposal at all:
Your “viewpoint” is worth nothing on this.
I wrote: “Ken keeps on repeating the Xiang 3% explanation of fluoride on IQ, and I keep on repeating that Xiang’s study was done by removing the confounding iodine factor by having the study only compare iodine-sufficient communities. That is not a reality for NZ.”
Ken can’t argue with the substance of what I am saying, therefore has to make a lot out of my poor syntax instead.
I’ll say it again:
Xiang’s study compared the iodine-sufficient communities of Wamiao and Xinhuai. So the confoundment of low iodine cannot be seen and the study cannot apply to NZ,
Ken wrote: “You said this – not me. It is dishonest and does not represent the proposal at all”
I had written: “They give the impression the IQ trouble was only a result of low iodine in that case, therefore fluoride is just great for everyone.”
So Ken are you proclaiming the IQ trouble was NOT a result of low iodine (of course extra lead &c.) instead of fluoride? And that therefore it is NOT OK for people to think fluoride is generally acceptable?
Or what is your interpretation?
“Results and Discussion
• No significant differences were found
between the two village in the levels
of iodine in the urine and lead in
blood of the children.
• Thus urinary iodine and blood lead
levels do not appear to affect the
differences in IQ in children between
the two villages.”
Click to access xiang.fan-conference.sept2014.pdf
So Xiang’s study cannot be generalised to a world in which iodine levels do vary.
So Brian, you claim:
âXiang’s study cannot be generalised to a world in which iodine levels do vary.â
I agree completely, and quite irrespective of iodine levels.
Yet your mates Paul and Michael Connett are doing exactly that. Xiangâs work is a key element in their programme and in the so far unpublished paper by Connett, Hirzy et al., claiming to show fluoridation should be stopped.
And the new dogma of FAN is âMichael is an expert on both the IQ and animal neurotoxicity studies.â
Also, this point about iodine really undermines the paper of Peckman et al, doesnât it? You know, the paper you have been promoting.
I had written: “Xiang’s study cannot be generalised to a world in which iodine levels do vary.”
Ken wrote: “I agree completely, and quite irrespective of iodine levels.”
Not clear what you mean there Ken.
We don’t know what a Xiang study would have shown had it encompassed varying iodine levels. Though we can get a direction to look from Lin FF.
And you wrote: “Yet your mates Paul and Michael Connett are doing exactly that. Xiang’s work is a key element in their programme and in the so far unpublished paper by Connett, Hirzy et al., claiming to show fluoridation should be stopped.”
Xiang’s study is interesting because it shows a significant though small fluoride IQ negative correlation even when iodine averages are close.
For a moment let’s think of any relationship between children’s hunger and their parents’ income. A small negative overall correlation may show in a relatively wealthy society. Say 85% of incomes are sufficient. The poverty of the 15% won’t show much in the overall correlation, it will only affect it a small amount.
Connett thinks a parallel thing is happening in Xiang’s figures so divides the UF levels into categories, because the 15% minority should not be written off.
Brian, please link me to where Connett âdivides the UF levels into categoriesâ â have yet to see this. From memory, Connettâs only mention of urinary F is to state there is a significant correlation with IQ. He doesnât even provide an R2 value â for obvious reasons.
Ken you were complaining about it here:
That referred to the misleading graph using water F – not urinary F. And this was prepared by Xiang, not Connett – although it is the one Connett relies on in his campaign. It is misleading and dishonest.
Sorry uses the WF figures broken into categories.
Don’t you see the parallel with parental incomes and child hunger?
Brian, I see your willingness to abandon rational understanding of the data. But at the same time, I agree it would have been nice to have seen inclusion of parental incomes and child hunger in the regression analysis. I suggest inclusion of a few items like this would have removed any significance attached to fluoride.
Ken I am not at this time suggesting to include parental incomes in this study.
My point is that that concept illustrates that an important smaller part of a distribution can have its effect masked by the larger part.
Xiang’s data is more numerous at lower fluoride levels, and effects at higher fluoride levels, where fewer subjects were residing, can be more fairly acknowledged if their category is given a fair weight.
Why are you opposed to inclusion of parental incomes and child poverty in such regression analyses? Surely these are more likely to be relevant to IQ than is fluoride?
Lin FF et al did not afford space in their article to give a full description of their stratified sampling of the groups of 10 to 12 chose from the 60 or so likely members of each of the 12 classes. They would have wanted to be sure that randomly choosing 20% of the class for further testing did not produce a sample without a representative age profile, or sex profile for example. So they would have stratified first, into sex and age groups and then chosen randomly from those strata.
What I see being done with Connett’s presentation is just Xiang’s stratification. Where specifically in Xiang’s work does Connett’s abstraction point show?
Xiang must have realised the low fluoride stratum was too big.
Ken wrote: “Why are you opposed to inclusion of parental incomes and child poverty in such regression analyses? Surely these are more likely to be relevant to IQ than is fluoride?”
I am not opposed, just at the moment I brought up that subject as a parallel.
I could give other parallels of the statistical picture but someone may try to accuse me of or even possibly use the technique Naomi Orestes described, in the video you ctied, of trying to sustain confusion, as in obfuscating global warming.
And Lin et al would have chosen strata containing the same proportion of various cultural backgrounds as in the class as a whole. Then randomly selected.
I agree that if Xiang is doing stratification after the event there is the chance of dishonesty and cherry picking, but it is not a foregone conclusion. There is some honesty in science.
Brian, WTF do you mean by âWhere specifically in Xiang’s work does Connett’s abstraction point show?â
Where in Xiang’s reports did Connett get the stratified water F chart?
I know I have been using the stratification concept a bit differently.
Please think of how WINZ pays people over 65 years of age. Every NZer gets Super based on age alone, but persons living alone get extra, if their other income is not too high I think. An average payment figure for the whole over 65 population is useful in some respects but does not offer as much info as the stratified one.
Abstraction, stratification – you are burbling again, Brian.
Ken abstraction means taking a bit from. Connett presented an IQ WF chart from Xiang’s work you say. Where in Xiang’s work is all I was asking for.
Sorry if I haven’t explained stratification well enough.
Here is another go: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stratified_sampling
Brian, read Xiangâs 2003 paper.
Thanks, Ken. Your Apr 23, 2015 statement: “First of all the figure shows what Xiang’s data is like. It compares IQ with urine fluoride concentration – unfortunately he did not give a similar figure for fluoride concentration in drinking water” misled me. I had thought you meant he did not give water fluoride figures, though you actually meant a figure or graph.
The UF/IQ graph has many values in the low UF range, which would be Xinhuai.
It is possible to get a good feeling for what the WF/IQ “figure” would look like by examining Table 8 in the Apr 23 link to Xiang’s paper you gave.
Xinhuai with low fluoride had 290 children, then Wamiao with higher fluoride was divided into 5 groups, but totalling only 222 children. Connett has plotted the Table 8 figures, and you pasted in his plot.
This is Table 8, but leaving out the +/- errors which you can read in the paper
Group——Number of children—-Water F—IQ
Now could you please say is it Xiang’s displaying of his data like this which is “dishonest”, or is it Connett’s graphing of it, or his way of presenting the graph?
For it appears you prefer a correlation like Xiang’s for UF/IQ in which the large number of Xinhuai figures mask the Wamiao range.
Would a correlation just across Wamiao be “dishonest”?
Both Xiang and Connett were and are dishonest. Both of them are aware of the poor correlation with urinary F and I find it hard to believe Xiang had not done a similar regression for water F. My enquiries in this issue got a silence from Xiang and a rude âgo awayâ from Connett. Guilty as sin, I would say.
On the other hand a reasonable journal would not have accepted the paper without querying the lack of regression for water F (but Fluoride is a crappy journal with effectively non-existent peer review).
You should not make assumptions like âmany values in the low UF range, which would be Xinhuai.â as it is not warranted at all. However, the key thing is the large variance as you can see for low values of F the IQ varies dramatically. But that is what you expect from an R2 value as low as 3%. The honest interpreter accepts the values as they are.
Of course I prefer a proper regression analysis to an artificial manufactured curve. It is stupid to talk about an honest presentation of all the data as âmaskingâ just the data you want to select. One should always look at all the data and be very careful about removing any â no matter how tempting it is â without extremely good reasons.
I have found with the statisticians I have worked with that the first thing they wanted to do with my data is to see a plot of the whole data set. Peer-reviewers who a statistically capable always ask to see such plots as well.
Connett has been dishonestly outing lipstick on a pig by pretending that the correlation is much better than it really easy. That is extremely easy to do with any set of data where there is a significant trend. It as a way of hiding the very low R2 value and the obvious variance which shows up when the whole data set is plotted.
Ken: “However, the key thing is the large variance as you can see for low values of F the IQ varies dramatically.”
At 1mg/L UF there is a 60 IQ, but at 0.5 mg/L it only goes down to 72IQ.
The values between 0.5 and 2 mg/L are very many so probability suggests their spread would be wider.
“I have found with the statisticians I have worked with that the first thing they wanted to do with my data is to see a plot of the whole data set.”
That’s a bit late. Before even looking at the plot they should be asking if you have represented all possibilities fairly in your measurements. Then they might look at the measurements.
As for the urinary fluoride/IQ relationship, to me it seems to be in two regions which meet at about 3.5 mg/L, which could be about 2.5 mg/L water fluoride from Xiang’s figures. The first part has a slightly greater negative correlation than the simple straight line. The second part has a slightly positive correlation. Posting in the off chance it means anything.
Wow, what a random scatter. A human would not be able to draw any correlation lines through it. So you took a computer, which can draw a line through any graph with two or more points, to draw one for you.
I see that both the lowest and highest IQs are found in the lowest fluoride areas. Does that mean that higher fluoride levels reduce the range of IQs, or just that there are fewer people in higher fluoride areas and hence smaller ranges of most measurements?
What it means is that F is probably not influencing IQ and one should look at other factors. Attempts to confirm some sort of weird bias by playing with the data in the way Brian does is just desperate and avoids the obvious.
I think Xiang did have other data which could have been included in the regression so it is a real pity he didnât and that his mates currently discourage him from doing so.
I only found about 246 points and can’t tell which ones are doubled up. Xiang said: “Children for urine testing were chosen by random sampling: in Wamiao, 155 for fluoride and 46 for iodine; in Xinhuai, 135 for fluoride and 40 for iodine.” Stuartg has taught me to add.
But for the first segment rho is -0.1885 and the 95% confidence -0.323 -0.046.
Second segment 0.0574 -0.199 0.306.
However a bit of speculation comes to mind: that heavier tea drinking, as well as increasing the fluoride burden, may also with the caffeine, be overcoming some facet of attention deficit as the prescribed stimulant ritalin does.
Stuartg: “Wow, what a random scatter. A human would not be able to draw any correlation lines through it. So you took a computer, which can draw a line through any graph with two or more points, to draw one for you.”
It is fairly random but when I looked for a bit I saw two main clouds of points.
The single straight line was put in by Xiang.
I read off the points, have them if you want my readings, and put the two clouds into Vassarstats, with the results I have given.
segment 1 slope -0.33812, IQ intercept 100.82349
segment 2 0.052107, 88..38529
which I fairly approximately put on Xiang’s figure.
On Xiang’s UF/IQ graph, the part up to about UF= 1.9 mg/L is more dense with points.
My readings from the graph for that region and Vassarstats give
rho -0.1242, R^2 0.0154 (so it can be thought of as UF relates to 1.5% “causation” in that region.) Approximating from Xiang’s Table 9, that should be a region where the drinking water is under 1 mg/L fluoride.
The slope is -0.438213 and IQ intercept is 101.88297.
The 0.95 confidence for rho is -0.288, 0.047, which is hardly going positive.
So with fair confidence, though confounded by tea caffeine and probably other things, IQ is negatively correlated to UF when drinking water is under approx 1 mg/L.
I hope I am not breaking copyright by posting these:
” fair confidence” ?????
“Fair confidence”, with “confidence” having more than one meaning.
The 0.99 confidence limits are correlation being between -0.337 and 0.1.
That would mean do the whole set of measurements (for UF up to 1.9 mg/L) 1000 times over and something like 10 of those sets could be on those confidence limits for the correlation figure. If I happened to get the -0.337 figure the first time (I out of 100 chance) I would be thinking UF is explaining more than 11% of the IQ loss in that low fluoride range. Or if I were to have got the 0.1 I would be thinking it were explaining 1% of a benefit to IQ from fluoride in the low range.
But I also said “fair confidence,” since it is not quite certain from Xiang’s work that 1.9 mg/L UF relates to less than 1 mg/L water fluoride. Over a large group it might average that way.
I was being sarcastic, Brian.
But why donât you go ahead and publish your âfindingsâ? Perhaps give âFluorideâ a try. 🙂
I am a bit of a struggler, Ken.
Need to get more around exploratory/confirmatory statistics philosophy.
An old struggle:
I shouldn’t have phrased my last comment as a question.
It was meant to be rhetorical in that there is insufficient data within the scatter of points to answer either question, or any other question really.
I interpret it as showing no relationship between the figures measured, ie IQ and fluoride.
So, after all that work, Brian, you are no better off â in fact worse off. As you say, you cannot see a relationship between urinary fluoride and IQ â yet the original data does show a significant relationship explaining 3% of the variance in IQ.
So your extra âanalysisâ actually threw information away.
The way to make progress with Xiangâs data is to include confounders in the regression analysis. At the moment one can only conclude that he hasnât found the cause of IQ decline and it is very unlikely to be F.
Xiang’s Pearson correlation, Ken, which you refer to, is -0.174 and squaring that produces 0.0302767 or just over 3% causal effect regressed over all his UF/IQ data
I have not been able to read all of Xiang’s data and what I get, putting all that I did read in Vassarstats’ Pearson calculator, is -0.1678 and 2.81%, a little bit less.
So I have something like Xiang’s data set for UF/IQ.
Stuartg feels Xiang’s graph looks random, and therefore his claim would be Xiang’s low correlation cannot even be existing?
The quality of the society we live in depends in part on the IQ of people in it.
Like interest on a bank account can a small percent compound?
Iodine has been supplemented, lead has been removed from petrol and paint. Children go to school instead of the work-house pretty much, which helps IQ. Though if family businesses work on a contract system, and risk missing deadlines then children may be got to work, risking byssinosis &c, and losing the play essential for all-round growth. That is a little step backwards. But because it small when averaged over the whole society may it safely be ignored?
Fluoridation is claimed to produce a little step forward in dental health. Some say as much as 30%, though that is challenged. My quick look at Xiang’s UF/IQ data appears to say that for water fluoride levels rather relevant to fluoridation, that in that region my readings from the graph and Vassarstats givea -0.1242 correlation. Squaring that produces 0.0154, so it can be thought of as UF relates to 1.5% “causation” in that region. That is only half than what Xiang gets over the whole range, though advancing as far as water fluoride of about 2.5 mg/L appears to produce a 3.55% negative “cause”, more than Xiang’s. Above that water fluoride level, IQ appears to increase a bit though ti is not making up for the earlier loss.
And 1.5% is 5% of 30%.
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