Fluoride's Strange Bedfellows

Dentistry - Industry - Gulf War Syndrome

by Darlene Sherrell

In this article, the author explains the significance of the correction in the crippling dosage figures by NAS/NRC in 1993.

More than a hundred years ago, the famous Russian novelist, Tolstoy, was profoundly disillusioned by the materialism and predatory commercialism of Western civilization. With a deep and timeless understanding he wrote, ... "I know that most men, including those at ease with problems of the greatest complexity, can seldom accept even the simplest and most obvious truth if it be such as would oblige them to admit the falsity of conclusions which they have delighted in explaining to colleagues, which they have proudly taught to others, and which they have woven, thread by thread, into the fabric of their lives."

Nowhere is this stumbling over prejudice more dangerous than in the case of our current public health and environmental policy regarding fluoride -- special offspring of hundreds of industries essential to our way of life, our growth as a world power, and our very survival.

Unlike most chemical compounds which pollute our food and water supply, fluoride is ubiquitous. Its increasing presence in virtually everything we eat and drink is protected by an outdated policy born over sixty years ago in order to minimize environmental and health concerns perceived by Uncle Sam to be petty, costly, and potentially crippling to the Nation itself.

Although many chemicals appear to serve no purpose other than increased corporate profit, this one is grandfather to them all: a specially protected element cloaked in propaganda and controversy for so long it has become nearly invisible -- a topic excluded from polite conversation, but one of immense importance. U.S. fluoride policy will affect the future of agriculture, the responsible treatment of the Gulf War victims, the disposal of chemical warfare agents currently threatening the lives of hundreds of millions of Americans, and, of course, the health of the World's entire population.

What follows is an attempt to explain how and why the situation evolved, who played the major roles, and who stands to lose, depending on the direction we take in the future.

Critics of water fluoridation have often pointed an accusing finger at a biochemist and an attorney who worked for the Aluminum Company of America, and simultaneously held key positions in our public health agencies. Many have claimed that water fluoridation was no more than an ingenious scheme to rid ALCOA of unwanted toxic wastes. Perhaps this was partially true, but national security may have played a far greater role in the turn of events.

The major world powers were at war. We needed steel, glass, brick, aluminum, and uranium. We needed energy from coal-fired power plants. These are the industries whose smokestacks were belching poisonous fluorides across the landscape -- the industries whose workers were at greatest risk from chronic fluoride poisoning. At the time, scientists were just beginning to understand the toxicity of industrial wastes. Our knowledge of the long-term health effects of very small amounts of many trace elements, such as lead, mercury, fluoride, asbestos, cadmium, etc. was practically non-existent.

In 1931 H. V. Churchill, in the chemical laboratory of ALCOA, identified fluoride as the culprit responsible for disfiguring mottled enamel. Two years later an article appeared in the Journal of Dental Research titled "Mottled Enamel: A Preventable Endemic Lesion of the Teeth That Presents A New Problem in Civic Responsibility," with "no alternative except to discard fluorine-bearing water supplies, and substitute others that are fluorine-free."

It became clear, however, that if we were to go ahead with production of the tools necessary for our growth and survival as a world power, compromises were in order. Choices had to be made, and the trend toward removing fluoride from the environment had to be reconsidered.

We couldn't afford a zero tolerance policy for industrial workers, and had identified districts in sixteen states needing costly removal of fluoride from the water supplies. We needed a middle ground -- an acceptable risk. And so, perhaps, denial of fluoride's toxicity was born of necessity. Perceptions had to be altered, and scientific standards were forced to bend.

By the time health problems began to appear, the U.S. Public Health Service had painted itself into a corner. Unfortunately, that powerful agency has been allowed to decide on the direction of all medical research, decide whose work will be funded, whose name will find its way into the major journals, and therefore, who will achieve financial security. They decide which procedures will be accepted at our hospitals and universities, which perceptions of reality will be popular, and which will meet ridicule.

The small amount of fluoride found in the typical diet of the early 1940s provided no obvious threat to health. Generally speaking, the total daily dosage was under one-half milligram daily. With water fluoridation, it was said that we were merely redistributing a natural element, so that everyone would get just enough. Promises were made that "optimal" levels of fluoride in the drinking water would result in fewer cavities. Only ten percent of our children would experience the mildest and practically undetectable stages of dental fluorosis. If a difficult by-product could find a profitable use, so much the better. It could be argued, after, all; that the scientists who were promoting water fluoridation had children, too. Surely, none of them would poison their own water supply!

In 1947 Oscar Ewing, formerly Washington D.C. counsel for Alcoa became head of U.S. Public Health Service. By 1951 the American Journal of Public Health contained the following observation: "The acceptance of the fluorosed tooth as the really desirable tooth was a step revolutionary in thought and not yet accepted by the diehards who trembled at the thought of mottled enamel." In another journal, mildly mottled teeth were described as "a beautiful tooth and possibly the tooth to be produced."

In 1951, the National Academy of Sciences formed a panel to determine the relative risks and benefits of water fluoridation. The panel chairman, Kenneth Maxcy, was consultant to the Secretary of War and editor for one of the leading industrial health journals. Panel member Francis Heyroth was Assistant Director of the Kettering Laboratory at the University of Cincinnati, and Harold C. Hodge, Ph.D., was the Nation's leading authority on fluoride.

Since the health effects of fluoride had been industry's problem, the experts who moved into our government regulatory agencies came, primarily, from industry -- and one of those industries was war. Uncle Sam wanted the atomic bomb, and also wanted chemical warfare agents, as well as airplanes, rocket fuel, steel, aluminum, glass, electricity, etc. These required the exposure of workers to fluoride. In 1954, nine corporations involved in or threatened with litigation due to air and water pollution by fluoride financed "Fluoridation as a Public Health Measure," a pro-fluoridation review, which provided the medical and dental community with industry's version of science, while appearing to be unbiased and accurate. The United States Public Health Service had begun its extensive campaign to bring water fluoridation to every city in the nation, with the help of endorsements by well-known medical and dental associations.

All those who dared to object, or speak out regarding the toxicity of fluoride, were intimidated, slandered, suspended from their professional associations, fired, forced to resign, or otherwise silenced.

In a statewide survey conducted in September 1954, J. A. Forst, M.D., New York State University Department of Education, using identical examinations in all cities, reported observing one-third more dental defects including malposition of teeth in fluoridated Newburgh, New York, than in the non-fluoridated control city of Kingston. Dr. Forst was chastised for his efforts.

Two North Carolina dentists who opposed fluoridation publicly in 1954 were suspended by the American Dental Association for one year. On June 7, 1957, Dr. W. H. Hill, Calgary, Alberta, Medical Officer of Health, was dropped as medical examiner after 25 years because he opposed fluoridation. Dr. Jonathan Forman, Columbus, Ohio, allergist, after 25 years as editor of the State Medical Journal, resigned on request because of anti-fluoridation speeches and meetings (Columbus Citizen, 11/13/58)

Dr. F. J. Stare, heavily endowed by industry, called physicians who oppose fluoridation "misinformed, stupid or dishonest" in the AMA Journal of December 2, 1961. Dr. Stare later became the darling of the pre-sweetened cereal industry when he said that refined white sugar (sucrose) is an "essential nutrient," necessary for the normal growth and development of children.

In 1963 the National Institute of Dental Research funded publication of a book of abstracts from the Kettering Laboratory at the University of Cincinnati. According to its preface, the Kettering Laboratory became interested in the fluoride literature in the late 1920s with its investigation of the effects of some of the freons (a class of organic fluorides used as refrigerants). In the late 1940s a systematic bibliographic program was initiated at the Kettering Lab at the request of several sponsors whose concern was the effect of industrial exposure to fluorides. This resulted in the publication in 1958 of an annotated bibliography, The Occurrence and Biological Effects of Fluorine Compounds, Vol I, The Inorganic Compounds, containing approximately 8700 abstracts.

A review from the Kettering Laboratory titled "Toxicological Evidence for the Safety of the Fluoridation of Public Water Supplies, by Francis F. Heyroth, M.D., and published in the American Journal of Public Health, volume 42, 1952, is cited by the U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare as evidence for the safety of fluoridation. The references deal with rabbits, sheep, cattle, swine, a dog, Danish miners, pooled urine samples, a man, six people in South Africa, two people, heights & weights, pediatric exams, x-rays, etc. Kettering is the national clearing house for fluoride research. In another example, a case report published in the May, 1943 issue of Radiology described severely mottled teeth as well as skeletal fluorosis in a man who, until the age of seven had used water containing 1.2 ppm fluoride; for two years, used water containing 5.7 ppm fluoride; and then for seven years used water containing 4.4 ppm fluoride. In Kettering's book, however, the figure is 12 ppm. According to the report, titled Fluoride Osteosclerosis from Drinking Water, "all the teeth showed a severe degree of mottled enamel."

Kettering sponsors included the Aluminum Company of America (the original source of suggestions that fluoride might prevent dental decay), Aluminum Company of Canada, American Petroleum Institute, Columbia-Geneva Steel Company, E.I. DuPont de Nemours, Harshaw Chemical Company, Kaiser Aluminum and Chemicals Corporation, Minnesota Mining and Manufacturing Company, Pennsylvania Salt Manufacturing Company, Reynolds Metals Company, Tennessee Valley Authority, and Universal Oil Products Company -- all concerned with toxic waste, and worker health.

Dr. Robert Kehoe was Director of the Kettering Laboratory at the University of Cincinnati Department of Preventive Medicine and Industrial Health, Medical Director of the Ethyl Corporation, consultant to the Tennessee Valley Authority, the Atomic Energy Commission, the U.S. Air Force, and the Division of Occupational Medicine of the Public Health Service. He was one of the primary spokesmen for the safety of fluoridation, and also testified for the safety of atmospheric lead from auto exhausts. (Leaded gasoline shown no public health threat. July/August, 1962. Oil Facts.)

In a popular pro-fluoridation booklet, Our Children's Teeth, Dr. Kehoe wrote: "The question of the public safety of fluoridation is non-existent from the viewpoint of medical science."

In the late 1970s I was able to convince the Director of the Michigan Department of Public Health, as well as a number of legislators, that the promotion of water fluoridation was based on the fraudulent Kettering abstracts. Dr. Szweda, who was then chief of the dental division, was remarkably unimpressed when I showed him photocopies of the original scientific journals side-by-side with the Kettering abstracts. He said, "Look, lady, if the abstracts don't agree with the originals, there must be something wrong with the originals." Legislators, however, were not so thoroughly brain washed. Within a short time, Michigan repealed its mandatory water fluoridation law.

In February, 1989, John Harkin, of the University of Wisconsin at Madison, wrote, "The controversy surrounding the questions of the benefits and risks of drinking water fluoridation illustrate an outstanding example of the importance of environmental toxicology in modern living and the lack of appropriate application of accepted scientific norms to risk assessment and regulatory actions."

Unfortunately, however, the only regulatory action involving fluoride is the current maximum contaminant level (MCL) set by the Environmental Protection Agency in 1985. The Federal Register clearly reveals that the MCL was based on the erroneous belief that in order to experience crippling skeletal fluorosis (the only acknowledged adverse health effect associated with fluoridated water) a person would have to ingest 20 to 80 milligrams of fluoride daily for a period of ten to twenty years -- a figure corrected by the National Research Council in 1993, to 10 to 20 mg/day. In addition, it is clear that EPA did not consider other sources of fluoride in the U.S. diet, although it is certain that the total daily intake of fluoride must be considered.

The erroneous dosage figures originated with Harold C. Hodge, Ph.D., who was then Chairman of the Committee on Toxicology of the Division of Chemistry and Chemical Technology of the National Research Council. He had been a consultant to several industrial companies since 1937, had been involved with the Manhattan Project since the spring of 1943, and present at the Bikini tests in July 1946. Hodge began his work with the Atomic Energy Commission in January of 1947, studying the toxicity of fluorine, uranium, beryllium and other elements and compounds of special interest to the AEC.; was Chairman of the Technical Advisory Committee on the fluoridation of water supplies of the State of New York Department of Health, and member of the Food and Nutrition Board subcommittee of the Institute of Medicine, which was appointed to study the problem of providing an optimum amount of fluoride in the American diet, including the water supply. The committee report, which contains Hodge's chart of fluoride effects became Publication 294, National Research Council, November 1953.

Dr. Hodge cited Roholm's classic study of the effects of fluoride on workers exposed to dusts from cryolite, a natural ore containing fluoride, sodium, and aluminum. However, the original data was expressed in metric terms -- milligrams per kilogram of body weight -- and, somehow, Hodge neglected to convert pounds to kilograms when applying the data to a typical range in body weight. This colossal error became the backbone of our fluoride paradigm.

Hodge multiplied 100 pounds by 0.2 to get 20 mg, and multiplied 229 pounds by 0.35 to get 80 mg -- but the original figures were 0.2 to 0.35 mg/kg -- not mg/lb. That's how NAS/NRC got their crippling dosage figures; and from that point on, everyone else followed their lead -- in spite of Hodge's correction in 1979. Roholm had observed that phase 1 generally occurred after 2.5 years at this dosage, phase 2 after 4.5 years, and crippling fluorosis after 11 years.

When the National Research Council corrected Hodge's error, they applied Roholm's milligram per kilogram figures to the same typical range in body weight (100 to 229 pounds) and used the time span of 10 to 20 years. Thus, the current consensus of Uncle Sam's most prestigious group of scientists is that within a very short period of time, just 10 to 20 milligrams of fluoride will cripple an otherwise healthy individual -- and has been observed to do so among workers in several industries, worldwide.

The condition has been reported in pediatric age groups as well as among adults, because fluoride accumulates in a straightforward linear manner. If the time span is increased to 40 to 80 years, the daily intake required to cause crippling would be 2.5 to 5.0 mg/day. It's the grand total which determines the result, so long as each individual dose is too small to cause death. (just one ounce of fluoride is more than enough to kill a dozen children within hours)

The official correction by NAS/NRC came about, not because I was able to demonstrate the error in arithmetic, but because U.S. Senator Bob Graham of Florida, and Dr. Robert J. Carton, a senior official at EPA's Washington, D.C. office, were watching.

Chemical & Engineering News published a Special Report on Water Fluoridation in their August 1, 1988 issue, with this to say: "Although skeletal fluorosis has been studied intensely in other countries for more than 40 years, virtually no research has been done in the U.S. to determine how many people are afflicted with the earlier stages of the disease, particularly the preclinical stages. Because some of the clinical symptoms mimic arthritis, the first two clinical phases of skeletal fluorosis could be easily misdiagnosed. Skeletal fluorosis is not even discussed in most medical texts under the effects of fluoride; indeed, a number of texts say the condition is almost nonexistent in the U.S. Even if a doctor is aware of the disease, the early stages are difficult to diagnose."

To the majority of U.S. residents, bombarded with television commercials for fluoride dental products, fluoride means good dental health -- and that's all. Very few people are aware of its use in pesticides, drugs, common cleaning agents, and other everyday household products. Even fewer realize that the deadly nerve gas, Sarin, owes its toxicity to fluorine.

In a series of articles published recently by the Tampa Tribune (Florida) staff writers describe "crop damage in 40 states ... and the costliest man-made agricultural disaster in Florida history," caused by the use of Benlate, an agricultural product from DuPont, in which the company deliberately mixed (flusilazole) a compound not approved for use in the United States. Without ever mentioning the role of fluoride, stories describe a boy with no eyes, a girl with kidney failure, men, women and children with aches, pains, nosebleeds, skin and testicular cancers, acute irritation of throat and nasal passages, profuse and frequent nosebleeds, shortness of breath, memory loss, burning lungs, numbness in the lips, an unusual taste in the mouth, tightness of the chest, deformities in frogs, insects, and cows, as well as a fungal infection caused by fusarium, one of the organisms Benlate was designed to fight. Fusaria organisms are widespread in nature, living in soil, decayed material and foods. They can rot tomatoes and lay waste to other crops.

According to the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, the Benlate contained flusilizole, which causes "forward mutation of pathogenic fungi." This compound from DuPont is a sterol-inhibiting broad spectrum fungicide, used on cereals, fruits, and vegetables, and contains 60.93% carbon, 4.79% hydrogen, 13.32% nitrogen, 8.90% silicon, and 12.05% fluorine. All but the fluorine are harmless.

DuPont has steadfastly denied any adverse health effects from the product. DuPont executives issued a Path Forward' document that advised company employees how to treat scientists the corporation considered adversaries. It read: Cut them off publicly. Don't share information with them. Get intelligence on them so we're not blind-sided. Know your enemies. DuPont researchers were told that they were essentially working for the DuPont lawyer handling the Benlate cases. The attorney had already told DuPont to stress it was still searching for a cause. ... A federal judge in Columbus, Ga., fined the firm $115 million in a court ruling that found fraud and suppression of evidence.

Today, as in the days when Dr. Kehoe spoke to us of the safety of both lead and fluoride, the new name often seen in newspaper columns is Michael W. Easley, D.D.S., M.P.H., an editorial fellow for the American Council on Science and Health -- front for American Cyanamid, Archer Daniels Midland, Chevron, Dow Chemical, DuPont, Exxon, General Mills, Johnson & Johnson, Monsanto, Pfizer, Union Carbide, Uniroyal, Proctor & Gamble, Coca Cola, The American Dental Association, etc.

On August 7, 1996, Easley used the Internet to warn dentists to ignore those who object to water fluoridation, calling them "health terrorists," claiming that "none of them know a damn thing about what they are talking about. . . . their twisted minds have accepted the notion that it is o.k. to lie, slander, libel, exaggerate, misquote, ... in their misguided attempts to frighten the public into not accepting fluoridation. ... fluorophobics are not deserving of your efforts. Let them spew their garbage, ignore them, and go on with your discussions as if they weren't here. . . Spend your energy fluoridating communities."

The names may have changed, but the game remains the same.

The experience of Dr. Geoffrey E. Smith, a dental surgeon from Victoria, Australia, is typical. He submitted a paper on fluorides in preventive dentistry to the New York State Dental Journal. His paper was refused, with this explanation from the editor: "The opposition to fluoridation here has become virulent again. It would not be strategic to add this aspect of the problem to the current contentions."

The paper, A surfeit of fluoride?, was then published in a British Scientific Journal (Sci. Prog. Oxf. 69:429-442) in 1985. It contains the following comments: "... the margin between a safe daily dose of fluoride and a potentially harmful one is narrow. ... Individuals are now ingesting fluoride from a growing number of everyday sources including water, food, dental health products, medicines, as well as insecticide, pesticide and fertilizer residues, and even the air they breathe. ... every effort should be made to reduce unnecessary daily exposure to fluoride. ... plasma fluoride levels which can damage developing tooth cells may also endanger other cells and their enzyme systems in the body ... The changes which occur in dental fluorosis may be secondary to cellular dysfunction caused by toxic levels of fluoride in the vicinity of the cells. This interference with cell function may be related to inhibitory effects of fluoride on specific enzyme systems. A number of important enzymes and physiological processes, which are not confined to developing teeth, can be inhibited by fluoride at very low concentrations, ... New evidence regarding the possible action of fluoride on human cells is emerging all the time."

More recently, Phyllis J. Mullenix, Ph.D., published a study on the effects of fluoride on the central nervous system in rats. (Neurotoxicology & Teratology 17,2:169-177 1995) She described her findings as "indicative of a potential for motor dysfunction, IQ deficits and/or learning disabilities in humans." This heresy cost Dr. Mullenix her position with the Forsyth Research Institute; she is presently with Children's Hospital in Boston.

On November 24, 1996, London's Sunday Telegraph reported that recently declassified documents indicate that in 1944 a research project at a U.S. atomic weapons base was canceled when scientists found evidence that fluoride could cause confusion, drowsiness and listlessness.

In another seemingly unrelated incident, the Palm Beach Post (Saturday, December 7, 1996) carried an article titled Conn. Lawmaker says VA punishes doctors who talk about gulf illness. "The lawmaker, Rep. Christopher Shays, R-Conn., was responding to reports this week that two doctors from the agency had been targets for dismissal because they were outspoken in the view that some veterans of the 1991 war had been made sick by exposure to Iraqi chemical weapons or by an infectious agent endemic to the gulf. ... Anybody who comes forward is threatened with removal,' said Shays, the chairman of a House Human Resources subcommittee that opened an aggressive investigation of Gulf War illnesses in March. If you have a contrary view that maybe the Congress or the public needs to hear, you are silenced.'..."

Recent television and newspaper reports have left people shaking in their boots because of leaking containers filled with chemical warfare agents -- the same toxic nerve gases used on both the military and civilians in the Gulf War. It seems we stored the corrosive fluoride compounds in metal containers thirty years ago, and now, every now and then, one of them breaks through the compartment separator meant to prevent accidental explosions. There have been 2,100 reported incidents of leakage so far, and while incineration is slated to destroy some 31,000 tons of the toxic soup, the Army is battling local residents worried about air pollution from the incinerator's smokestacks. . . "and the possibility that a rocket filled with nerve gas could explode, endangering 35,000 lives." Cost overruns have ballooned the price tag at the Umatilla (Oregon) incinerator to $1.2 billion, and mayors of towns near the site charge that $42 million in federal funding for emergency preparedness was misspent. The incinerator is one of eight the Army plans to build across the country to get rid of the country's chemical weapons stockpile, which Congress has ordered to occur by the end of 2004. . . but, according to a General Accounting Office report issued in late February, there's no way the Army will make the deadline. The GAO also said the cost of destroying the chemicals, which include mustard gas and the ultra-deadly GB and VX nerve gases, will probably exceed the $12.5 billion estimate.

In 1968, the April 6 issue of Science News began, "On March 13 a plane flew by. On March 14 the deaths began. Within the first week some 5,000 corpses lay on the rugged slopes of Utah's Skull Valley." The corpses were sheep, cows, rabbits, birds, and other wildlife, and the body count grew. Veterinarians who performed autopsies on the sheep had experienced nausea, headaches, dizziness and diarrhea, and, although the Army denied any role in the incident, Dr. Kelly H. Gubler, chief of staff of Tooele Valley Hospital, was quoted as saying, "I've treated workers in the past for an overdose of anticholinesterase agents, even though the Army denies they were contaminated at the proving ground." Nerve gases, like insecticides, belong to a class of chemicals called organic phosphates. They kill by blocking the action of a chemical in the blood called cholinesterase.

The Army's experiment, called "one of the biggest chemical-warfare-agent disasters in U.S. history," became the subject of a Warner Brothers movie, RAGE, starring George C. Scott, and released in 1972. The home video box carries the number, 11428, and is described as follows "An embittered father blows the lid off a government cover-up."

The cover, however, is not very thick. On May 19, 1969, Newsweek reported that "At Fort Detrick, Md., one of the Army's six major CBW centers, 2,800 military men and civilians are at work on what they call "public health in reverse" -- propagation of disease mutations for which there may be no cures."

"Sarin is a colorless, odorless nerve gas. Even a whiff can kill. It swiftly paralyzes the respiratory system, fills the lungs with fluid and drowns its victims. ... It can be made from legal chemicals used in compounds to chlorinate pools, fluoridate water or make insecticides. ... Sarin is 1,500 times more deadly than cyanide. ... just 650 micrograms of sarin could kill a 150 pound person half the time. Even if exposure doesn't cause death, victims' eyes tear up and eyesight dims. Vomiting, diarrhea, a headache and powerful convulsions may occur. ... In an attack, a victim's best option is to get away. If that's not possible, a wet rag over the nose helps because water defuses the deadly chemical." (USA Today, March 21, 1995, Terrorism in Tokyo - Sarin is a highly potent gas - Developed by the Nazis, all its ingredients are legal.)

Sarin, like flusilizole, depends on fluorine for its toxic action. It is made up of 46.15% carbon, 8.85% hydrogen, 17.56% oxygen, 17.00% phosphorus, and 10.43% fluorine. Water alone removes the fluorine atom producing a non-toxic acid. GB is another similar chemical warfare agent which depends on fluorine as the toxic ingredient. It is made up of 34.29% carbon, 7.19% hydrogen, 22.84% oxygen, 22.11% phosphorus, and 13.56% fluorine. It is more than likely that these fluorides can also cause mutated pathogens.

Too much attention to the fact that the Gulf War area is naturally loaded with fluoride, or that the soldiers were forced to breathe air contaminated with fluoride compounds from burning fuel, or that the deadly chemical weapons depend on fluorine for their toxic action, or that fluorine has been shown to alter the genetic material of virtually every living thing would not do much to convince people to vote for water fluoridation. It would certainly give credence to the claims of the soldiers who complain of Gulf War Syndrome. . . and might also explain some of the mysterious infections passed on to their wives and children. In 1977 the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) explained, "Substances that act chemically to produce injury to organs and tissues of the body usually do so by two basic means: either by depressing or by stimulating the activity of the enzyme systems. A single substance may have more than one pathway and site of action. Multiple pathways of action may be invoked simply by differing doses of the toxic agent; low doses may stimulate enzyme action, high doses depress and inhibit the same or different enzyme systems. This is a characteristic action of most, if not all, toxic substances, including arsenic, benzene, chloroform, cobalt, fluoride, and vanadium.

"Potentiation and synergism, the enhanced toxicity of two or more simultaneously acting substances, can be explained by the action of one preventing the elimination or the metabolism of the other, wholly or in part, thus maintaining elevated systemic levels of the toxic agent, resulting in an observed toxicity greater than the additive toxicity of the combined components.

"A. Marier, in his report Environmental Fluoride states that In several surveys in which sulphur dioxide had been suspected as the primary air pollutant, fluoride was found to be the factor responsible for environmental blight.' He points out that industries that release fluoride effluents also use fossil fuel as an energy source, thereby emitting significant quantities of sulphur dioxide, and comments on possible synergistic effects. "Synergistic" means that a substance stimulates and enhances the effect of another substance. Thus, if the two occur together, the combined effect would be greater than the sum of either occurring alone. It is a phenomenon well known in pharmacology, but it does not appear to have been seriously considered in connection with fluoride from the medical point of view. So far, only environmentalists have looked at it.

"A large number of pesticides, chiefly organic phosphates and carbamates, act in the body by blocking this enzyme action, thus allowing excessive amounts of the muscle stimulator to accumulate. The excessive stimulation results in paralysis of the host."

Nonetheless, POLICY remains fixed -- carved in stone -- and it says that although an average individual should expect to experience crippling skeletal fluorosis after forty years at total daily doses below 5 mg/day, it is entirely safe to swallow the 6 or 7 mg of fluoride currently delivered with modern foods, beverages, dental products, and fluoridated water.

Policy, apparently, also prevents government officials from giving life-saving advice to the people at risk from the accidental release of stored nerve gases. "Go inside," they could say, "cover yourself with wet clothing, breathe through a wet cloth, cover your hands and face as well. . . the water could save your life by attracting the fluorine from the toxic gas."

In other words, policy requires that you believe in scientists who defend the tobacco industry, the pharmaceutical, pesticide and fertilizer industry, the dental industry, and the military leaders who don't want to understand the ability of fluoride to alter the genetic structure of pathogens. It requires us to dismiss the plight of the Gulf War victim, the child whose teeth are stained, pitted, and crumbling, the adult with brittle bones and chronic arthritis, the farmer whose child is born without eyes, the deformities in both livestock and wildlife; and anything else that might interfere with business as usual. Anyone who dares to question or disagree is just another one of those conspiracy people.

Many environmental activists see the fight against water fluoridation as the key to a much-needed reform. We see it as the best documented, most flagrant example of the hazards of government sponsored technology. It demonstrates, like no other issue before us, the infiltration of politics into science -- a cancerous corruption of our health care system which must be removed.


The Wichita Eagle (Kansas), January 3, (1997), article by Michael W. Easley, D.D.S., M.P.H.
August 7, (1996) Michael W. Easley, D.D.S., M.P.H., the Internet
The Merck Index - An Encyclopedia of Chemicals, Drugs, and Biologicals (1996) #8520 Sarin
Time, February 12, (1996)
The Tampa Tribune, May 4, (1996)
St. Petersburg Times (Florida) Friday, August 23, (1996)
The Palm Beach Post, December 7, (1996)
The Tampa Tribune, January 26, (1995)
USA Today, March 21, (1995)
The Tampa Tribune, Sunday, December 17, (1995)
The Tampa Tribune, December 23, (1995)
Health Effects of Ingested Fluoride (1993) National Academy of Sciences
Toxicological Profile for Fluorides, Hydrogen Fluoride, and Fluorine (F), April, (1993) U.S. Dept. Health and Human Services, Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry Fluoridation Facts, American Dental Association (1993)
Review of Fluoride Benefits and Risks (1991) U.S. Dept. Health & Human Services
Trace Elements in Human and Animal Nutrition (1987) editor: Walter Mertz, U.S.D.A.
Drinking Water and Health (1977) National Academy of Sciences
Occupational Diseases (1977) A Guide to Their Recognition - U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare, Center for Disease Control - National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
American Journal of Clinical Nutrition (1974) volume 27, pages 590-594
Fluorides - Biological Effects of Atmospheric Pollutants (1971) National Academy of Sciences
Fluorides and Human Health (1970) World Health Organization
Newsweek, May 19, (1969)
The Milwaukee Journal, March 26, (1968)
Medical World News, April 12, (1968)
Science News, April 6, (1968) 93:327-328
Science News, April 27, (1968) 93:400-401
The Role of Fluoride in Public Health (1963) Kettering Laboratory, University of Cincinnati, Ohio
Fluoride Drinking Waters (1962) F. J. McClure, Editor, U.S.D.H.E.W.
Fluoridation: Facts, Not Myths (1957) American Dental Association
Fluoridation as a Public Health Measure (1954) James H. Shaw, Editor, page 49
American Journal of Public Health, December (1952) volume 42, page 1568
Report of the Ad Hoc Committee on the Fluoridation of Water Supplies, Division of Medical Sciences, National Research Council, Nov. 29, (1951)
Fluoride Osteosclerosis from Drinking Water, Radiology - 40:474 May, (1943) Linsman, Crawford & McMurray
Fluorine Intoxication (1937) K. Roholm, H.K. Lewis & Co., Ltd., London, page 319
Journal of Dental Research (1933) volume 13, page 139,140