Comment: With all due respect

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With all due respect

The "debunker" at Cracked did a pretty crappy job. If you click on the little (1) link in the Reuters article, you'll find a link where you can download the paper "Developmental Fluoride Neurotoxicity: A systematic Review and Meta-Analysis" by Anna L. Choi, Guifan Sun, Ying Zhang, and Phillipe Grandjean.

This study pooled results from 27 studies, 2 of which were from Iran, 25 of which were from China. In 2 of the Chinese studies, subjects were exposed to fluoride via coal burning, and in almost all the others, the fluoride came through drinking water as an additive. Not through industrial runoff, like this David Wong joker claims. He argues that they were testing "megadoses" of fluoride in the high-exposure groups, and this is just wrong. Here are the supposedly high concentrations of fluoride that were being tested, in mg/L (p.27 of Choi et al.): 4.55, 0.88, 2.1-7.6, 1.8, 2.97, 1.81-2.69, 2-11, 4.12, 2, 3.15, 2.9 ,2.97 ,4.5 ,3.8-11.5, 2.34, 2.47 and 2.38. For reference, the EPA's "safe" upper limit is 4 mg/L and the city I live in has 1.0 mg/L. These are not "megadoses".

He then goes on to argue that this report was forwarded to Reuters by an anti-fluoride activist group, with the implication that anything they say must be wrong. Then he finishes up with a logical fallacy, which is that because some people that he disagrees with thought fluoride was a communist mind control plot, that therefore this report about how fluoride adversely effects the developing mind is also not worth paying attention to.

It is a classic case of coming up with reasons to support a position that one already holds, rather than letting reasons dictate the position.