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OP: Fluoridation – it does reduce tooth decay

Written By: - Date published: 2:59 pm, June 21st, 2013 - 306 comments
Categories: health, making shit up, public services, science, water - Tags: ,

Ken Perrott at Open Parachute has been debunking some of the nonsense surrounding the debate on fluoridated water by investigating claims made against fluoridated water. His background is in scientific research, so he tends to actually read the papers cited by others. Unsurprisingly there are some of the weird nonsense interpretations around of papers because many people appear to avoid actually reading the details. This post was published on his site yesterday and has been reposted with permission.

In the current fluoridation debate anti-fluoridation activists will often claim fluoridation of public water supplies actually doesn’t reduce tooth decay. This conflicts directly with the advice of our health authorities – so what is the truth?

The claim

Again I will directly consider the claim of the Fluoridation Action Network of NZ (FAANZ). It’s summarised in the first objection to fluoridation (1. New science proves there is no benefit from swallowing fluoride ):

There are numerous modern studies to show that there is no difference in dental decay rates between fluoridated and non-fluoridated areas. The most recent, large-scale one was conducted in Australia (Armfield & Spencer, 2004 Community Dental Oral Epidemiology. 32:283-96).

When you observe the statistics of the world they clearly show tooth decay has declined in both fluoridated and non-fluoridated areas alike. This is a trend that is demonstrated when viewing the statistics across the States in America and in the smaller counties. See the charts and findings by Dr. Bill Osmunson in the above video by Professional Perspectives.

In New Zealand there have been two recent studies that showed there was no difference in dental decay for permanent teeth. One was the Southland Study in 2005 and the other was the Auckland study in 2008. These, among many other studies, have proven water fluoridation to be ineffective.

(This objection goes on to discuss topical vs ayatemic itnake of F which I won’t discuss here)

But, health authorities in New Zealand disagree – and they have the data to support their case. So how credible is the FANNZ claim?

The citation.

Again, another citation, unlinked, so I had to go to the trouble of hunting it down to read what it actually does say – which turns out to be the exact opposite of FANNZ claim! Same problems I met when I looked at their claim about toxic elements in fluoridating agents (see ).

The Australian study investigated concerns about the high use of bottled and rainwater. Several social, economic and dietary factors were considered but the major significant effect was that of fluoride. Children consuming tank and bottled water had much higher carries than those consuming water from fluoridated public water supplies. This was found for deciduous teeth, but not for permanent teeth and the authors speculated on the dietary and other reasons for this.

The authors considered lack of fluoride is an important problem for tank water use saying:

“Efforts could be directed at either reducing the use of tank water for domestic drinking water consumption or further encouraging the appropriate use of fluoride to compensate for the lack of fluoride in the drinking water.”

About bottled water they say:

“consumers currently have little choice in Australia and the imminent introduction of fluoride-containing bottled water does not look likely.”

So:

“It is also time that bottled water manufacturers in Australia began marketing fluoridated water. In the US more than 20 companies produce water with optimum fluoride concentrations.”

They finish their paper with this:

“Bottled water is promoted as a healthy, chemical-free alternative. There is a need for bottled water manufacturers to take a stand on the issue of the benefits of appropriately fluoridated water and provide consumers with choice.”

So another example of FANNZ using a citation inappropriately – to support a claim the exact opposite to the study’s results.

The New Zealand data.

The Ministry of Health (MOH) keeps records on the oral health of New Zealand children – and anyone can download that data from their website. There is data for age 5 and year 8 children over the time period 1990 to 2011. I’ll have a detailed look at the data for 2002 – 2011 (earlier data doesn’t include the ethnic breakdown which is very relevant). But first a few comments about the way many of the anti-fluoridation activists are cherry picking this and similar data to support their arguments.

Recently I received two specific claims made about this data:

  1. The oral health of Christchurch people is better than for New Zeland as a whole. The don’t have access to fluoridated water therefore this proves fluoridation doesn’t work.
  2. In 2011 the mean number of decayed, missing and filled teeth in 5 year old Waikato children was greater for children drinking fluoridated water than for those drinking unfluoridated water. This proves fluoridation doesn’t work.

In both claims data was carefully selected to “prove” fluoridation doesn’t work. One can’t directly compare Christchurch data with that for the whole of New Zealand as that ignores the influence of ethnic, social and other factors. And selection of one small piece (Waikato in 2011) of the total picture cannot give you any idea of that total picture. The data includes all sorts of variation over time and region and these cherry-pickers are make cynical use of this.

I have summarised the MOH data in this table as the changes for the percentage of carries free teeth, and mdmf – the mean number decayed, missing and filled teeth per child per year. The data are for 2 age groups and are averages, over the period 2002 to 2011, of annual data . The totals and the separate data for Maori give some idea of differences which are probably largely a result of the well established social and economic disadvantage of Maori.

Effect of fluoridation of % carries free and mdmf

Year 8

Total Maori
Carries free (%) 8.86 10.42
MDMF* -0.48 -0.81

5 years

Total Maori
Carries free (%) 8.05 12.46
MDMF* -0.63 -1.38

*MDMF = Mean decayed, missing and filled teeth

I think that shows fluoridation is associated with a clear increase in numbers of carries free teeth, and a clear decrease in the mean decayed, missing and filled teeth.

So much for FANN’s claim “that there is no difference in dental decay rates between fluoridated and non-fluoridated areas.”

The figures below show the g=data graphically to enable readers to get a better understanding.

First a comparison of average annual % carries free teeth and mdmf in the period 2002 -2011 for the two age groups.

% carries free

Fluor-1

Mean decayed, missing and filled teeth

Fluor-2

Plots of the data below give and idea of variability and trends. They also show the influence of social and economic deprivation is long-term.

% carries free

Fluor-3

MEAN DECAYED, MISSING AND FILLED TEETH

Fluor-4

A comment in trends

Some anti-fluoridationists are making an issue of the apparent improvement in oral health for people consuming unfluoridated as well as fluoridated water. For example, the claim above asserts:

“When you observe the statistics of the world they clearly show tooth decay has declined in both fluoridated and non-fluoridated areas alike.”

Perhaps they think that this somehow covers up the fact that despite the trends oral health it is still better for the fluoridated groups.

Mind you, another reason is that many of the statistics they refer to are presented only graphically. For example this figure from Fluoride Alert (an anti-fluoridation group) actually does not correspond to the data it refers to.

who_data01

It seems the figure was constructed using only 2 data points of each line – 1 very old and 1 recent. This means that all sorts of factors, (such as changes in criteria and attitude of dentists towards saving teeth) could be involved – quite apart from fluoridation.

The data I have plotted above the New Zealand in the period 2002 – 2011 does not show the declines that the anit-fluoridationists claim.

Another example of cherry-picking to mislead.

See also:

Getting a grip on the science behind claims about fluoridation

Is fluoride an essential dietary mineral?

Fluoridation – are we dumping toxic metals into our water supplies?

Tactics and common arguments of the anti-fluoridationists

Hamilton City Council reverses referendum fluoridation decision

Scientists, political activism and the scientific ethos

 

306 comments on “OP: Fluoridation – it does reduce tooth decay”

  1. Winston Smith 1

    I really don’t understand why we need to be having this…add the fluride to the water and if the whackos don’t like they can buy a water filter

    • One Anonymous Knucklehead 1.1

      Your new-found respect for evidence is very welcome.

      • gsays 1.1.1

        this whacko was talking to the dental nurse about this subject during my 11 yr old sons dental appointment.
        her concern was the food acid in energy drinks and processed food.
        she has recently seen children leave primary school cavity free and one year later return with serious decay issues.

        the problem with this issue is that nothing can be taken in isolation as causal.
        education (of parents), diet, disposable income etc.

        btw, the child in the chair was complimented on the health of his teeth, he lives on tank water, brushes twice a day and very rarely has fizzy and never food with artificial sweetener.

        • Colonial Viper 1.1.1.1

          Hmmmm yeah those energy drinks more acidic than Coke, and Coke can derust a part in 24 hours

    • lprent 1.2

      I’m unsure how effective that water filters would be. I’d have to look at the size of molecule that a water filter could strain and/or chemically bind.

      Not to mention that most water filters aren’t that effective because they are seldom if ever cleaned and the filters replaced.

      It always amuses me asking people about their usage of water filters and then pointing out that they are in fact increasing their risks through poor maintenance.

      They’d be better off buying bottled water from a known source and taking the risk of that supplier instead.

      • NickS 1.2.1

        Standard carbon filter should do the trick, mostly due to the chemical properties of SiF6 which make it very, very attracted to slightly positive atoms in a molecule. Like juicy hydrogen groups or in the case of carbon filters, the deliciously not strongly bound electrons of the carbons, especially in aromatic rings.

        Would have to be replaced according to manufacturer guidelines though, otherwise as you said, they filter wont do crap.

      • Roy 1.2.2

        Or they could collect water off their roof the way rural dwellers do.

        • Ugly Truth 1.2.2.1

          So long as you’ve got something to to disinfect it, otherwise you run the risk of cholera.

          • McFlock 1.2.2.1.1

            like the chlorine they add to municipal water. An actual poison (used in chemical warfare) added at four times the rate of fluoride. Double standards, much?

            • Ugly Truth 1.2.2.1.1.1

              No double standards, I wasn’t advocating chlorine use.

              False accusation much?

              • McFlock

                Ah, one of those non-poisonous disinfectants.
                Silver?

                  • McFlock

                    Fair enough. So people opposed to fluoridation can collect roof water, an easy opt-out solution.

                    • Not as easy as getting your water from the council supply, but probably the most practical idea if you don’t want council water.

                    • McFlock

                      a viable alternative, though.

                    • weka

                      Only if you can afford it. Double standard much?

                    • McFlock

                      bucket.

                    • weka

                      hypocrite.

                    • McFlock

                      Why? The gripe is that fluoridation is mass medication that can’t be avoided. If people are that concerned about it, then an alternative falls out of the sky. Or the local brewery’s free aquifer tap. Or a filter (though opinion is divided here). Or a still. Or supplied by tanker. Heck, if water in a pet bottle can provide clean water with a developing nation budget, it’s NZ-affordable.

                      The point being that if someone is so naive to believe that they have control over everything they injest down to a single part per million, there are options across the financial spectrum. So nah, even if one really wanted to call it “mass medication”, it’s still a massive call to use forced-medication ethical arguments.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Of course it is forced mass medication. If you had your way, you’d override the wishes of local government and make implementation of fluoridation compulsory by central legislative or regulatory mandate.

                    • McFlock

                      1: Hamilton council overrode its best knowledge of the wishes of the populace to remove fluoridation, so you’re on thin ice there;
                      2: If alternatives are accessible so you don’t need to injest it, it’s not “forced” by definition. Alternatives are available, therefore it’s obviously not “forced mass medication” and you are again using words you do not understand.

                      extra cluebat: it’s not “forced mass medication” if people aren’t medicated when they choose not to be.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Meh good as forced then.

                    • McFlock

                      no, because people don’t have to drink that water if they don’t want to.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Until you make them, or make their food with it

                    • McFlock

                      so now the local councils are making people drink municipal water? Or force-feeding them bread made with fluoridated water? No? Okay then.

                    • weka

                      McFlock, the reason you are being hypocritical is that on the one hand I am pretty sure you have argued that poor people are more at risk of tooth decay and so should be afforded a public health response. But what about poor people that want to avoid fluoridated water? Or are you suggesting that it’s only well off people that might want to do this? Not everyone can afford to install a rainwater tank, or has a car to get to the speights tap, or has an ability to use a fucking bucket.

                    • weka

                      “…
                      24 June 2013 at 11:51 pm
                      so now the local councils are making people drink municipal water? Or force-feeding them bread made with fluoridated water? No? Okay then.”

                      No-one is forcing anyone to eat a teeth damaging diet, or not clean their teeth properly either.

                      Isn’t this getting a bit ridiculous?

                    • McFlock

                      @ weka

                      Basically, I do think that fluoridated water supplies are more concerning for the rich than the poor, like vaccination. And for those poor people who are concerned about fluoride, there are many alternatives. But let’s say that there are 5 poor people who cannot find an alternative water source and are still concerned about fluoride. Do I care? No, because they are being delivered a potable water supply. I don’t believe that municipal authorities have an obligation to provide distilled, lab-quality, 99.99999999% pure water to households. Clean and drinkable yes. Stuff that has the dead rats taken out, if you will. But having an argument about something that has no demonstrable harm but a demonstrated association with positive health while not affecting any humanly-detectable quality of the water, I reckon that’s mostly the realm of people with few real worries.

                      No-one is forcing anyone to eat a teeth damaging diet, or not clean their teeth properly either.

                      My point was in response to CV calling fluoridation “forced mass medication”, which is indeed ridiculous. But bad caries-free/DMFT levels are not just the result of diet and lack of brushing, or even access to dental care. Even if everyone brushed thrice daily and ate like our neolithic ancestors, some of us would still get caries. Fluoride is complementary to other interventions, not a substitute, and vice versa.

                • Colonial Viper

                  cholera wipes out whole populations. Dental caries not so much. What was that fancy idea called again? Risk/benefits, right?

                  • McFlock

                    Well, you obviously think that the risk/benefit ration is worthwhile. How many milligrams/kg do you put your intake ate again?

          • Roy 1.2.2.1.2

            Not unless you’ve got someone who carries Vibrio cholerae shitting on your roof.

            I’ve lived in rural houses where the rainwater was collected off the roof, and visited a number of similar houses, and never yet seen anyone bother to disinfect their rainwater. I guess rascally people who climb on other peoples’ roofs to take a crap, and also happen to carry Vibrio cholerae, can’t be all that common.

            • KJT 1.2.2.1.2.1

              When we had tank water many of our visitors used to get upset stomachs. We, and our kids, seemed to be immune.

              The odd dead rat or possum did improve the flavour!

              • weka

                Have to agree with Roy – people have been using tank water for a very long time. But I’ve heard similar as KJT as well – that some people not used to it get stomach upsets. Even people who have their own tank water at home, when they go somewhere else. What does that tell us?

                • Colonial Viper

                  immune systems get trained up for the challenges that they are exposed to

                  • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                    Citation needed.

                    • weka

                      Ach, the illogic and bias in the first few paragraphs, can’t stand it. Fortunately I have a meeting to go to…

                    • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                      :lol: Quite likely. I’m pre-disposed to believe that I can “boost my immune system”, but many credible sources pour cold water on the notion.

                      Perhaps not the best citation ever though.

                    • weka

                      I’ll probably read the article because it does look like it’s got some interesting things in it. It’s just that science should be about exploring how immunity works, not pouring cold water on how it works ;-)

                      There is no doubt that there are things we can do to improve our personal immunity, even science knows that. It’s also pretty clear that science doesn’t know all there is to know about immunity yet.

                      And to go back to what CV said, I don’t think there is any doubt either that the immune system gets ‘trained’ by what it is exposed to.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      weka – the best way to look at the immune system is as your body’s standing military force. An extraordinarily powerful one, with an arsenal quite able to kill a human being in fifteen minutes or less.

                      But it is also requires a high level of discipline, of in-the-field training, and ongoing logistics supply, in order to function optimally.

                      EDIT – OAK’s citation is just irrelevant, and in the wrong universe.

                • McFlock

                  That while their immune systems might be used to it, they still should take the dead rats out of the tank?

                  • weka

                    I was going to say that we’re all individuals with individual responses to what we get exposed to in our environment ;-)

            • Ugly Truth 1.2.2.1.2.2

              I was thinking more of avian cholera

    • Mike S 1.3

      Or don’t add the fluoride to the water supply and the if the whackos don’t like it they can brush their teeth?

      • travellerev 1.3.1

        Mike S,

        Was gonna say that but you got it in first.

        I am from Amsterdam Holland and when I was first approached by the anti Fluoride “whacko’s” on the Hamilton farmer markets I responded when asked to sign their petition that I wouldn’t because I believed in fluoridation. It wasn’t until many years later I changed my mind and decided that we are not entitled to add any chemicals to the finite source of water no matter what the chemicals and that clean and healthy chemical water was a birth right of all species.

        As it happens we chuck in loads of them already in unhealthy and uncontrollable amounts and I don’t see why we should add fluoride to it.

        Decay is the result of adding unhealthy chemical products such as refined sugar and highely refined and processed carbohydrates to our diet and why not take them out first before we add chemicals to prevent tooth decay to the water.

        Sugar I might add doesn’t just rot your teeth but it makes you fat, causes many health issues such as diabetes and makes a few already stinking rich families even richer.

        So ditch the sugar and chemical laden soda pops and other crap out of your diet and voila no fluoridation needed in the first place.

        See you don’t have to go the nutcase or the wacko route. Common sense dictates that if we want people to be healthier we should make sure we eat healthier and take the detrimental chemicals they already eat out of their food and you don’t have to argue the for or against reasons of fluoride.

        And lets remember chemicals added to food to make it last longer, make it taste better no matter what that “food” is hugely profitable for already stinking rich people much like the sale of fluoride is.

        • travellerev 1.3.1.1

          Mike S,

          Was gonna say that but you got it in first.

          I am from Amsterdam Holland and when I was first approached by the anti Fluoride “whacko’s” on the Hamilton farmer markets I responded when asked to sign their petition that I wouldn’t because I believed in fluoridation. It wasn’t until many years later I changed my mind and decided that we are not entitled to add any chemicals to the finite source of water no matter what the chemicals and that clean and healthy chemical water was a birth right of all species.

          As it happens we chuck in loads of them already in unhealthy and uncontrollable amounts and I don’t see why we should add fluoride to it.

          Decay is the result of adding unhealthy chemical products such as refined sugar and highely refined and processed carbohydrates to our diet and why not take them out first before we add chemicals to prevent tooth decay to the water.

          Sugar I might add doesn’t just rot your teeth but it makes you fat, causes many health issues such as diabetes and makes a few already stinking rich families even richer.

          So ditch the sugar and chemical laden soda pops and other crap out of your diet and voila no fluoridation needed in the first place.

          See you don’t have to go the nutcase or the wacko route. Common sense dictates that if we want people to be healthier we should make sure we eat healthier and take the detrimental chemicals they already eat out of their food and you don’t have to argue the for or against reasons of fluoride.

          And lets remember chemicals added to food to make it last longer, make it taste better no matter what that “food” is hugely profitable for already stinking rich people much like the sale of fluoride is.

          • travellerev 1.3.1.1.1

            Purgatory!!!

            By the way, When I did some research to respond to Ken Perrot who left a comment on my blog I thought to check up on the Amsterdam fluoridation situation and guess what?

            It turns out that while Amsterdam was one of the first cities to add fluoride to the otherwise chlorine and chemical free water supply (To this day I might add) in 1969 if I recall correctly, making us all very proud that we were so well taken care of in such a modern way it was also the first city to get rid of it again in 1973! (without any fanfare by the way. A possible sign they did not want to have to pay damages to the people affected by the temporary poisoning of their drinking water.)

            Why? Because they kept and eye on the possible side effects and it turned out that in cities which had part Amsterdam water and part filtered dune water in separate water supply systems the neighborhoods with Amsterdam water started to report all kinds of health issues which disappeared when fluoridated water was discontinued.

            Seems simple to me and while I used to be proud I was drinking fluoridated water to keep my teeth I am now even more proud of my city of Amsterdam making that decision all those years ago.

            So why do I still have all my teeth at 57 if it wasn’t for ingesting this miracle chemical we should all drink? Perhaps it was because we had free dental care for everybody with six monthly checkups. Perhaps it was because I never did drink any coca cola and other crappy sugar laden soda pops and brush my teeth regularly. Or perhaps it was because like everybody else until recently I did brush my teeth with fluoridated tooth paste. Who knows? One thing is for sure drinking it wasn’t the reason

            • travellerev 1.3.1.1.1.1

              Oops, Here is the link to the summary of papers published on the Amsterdam, Netherlands fluoridation experiment.

              Oops** ” clean and healthy chemical water” should of course have been ” clean and healthy chemical FREE water”.

              • A chemical-free chemical?

                • Tamati

                  Methinks that the water supply may have been laced with the deadly dihydrogen monoxide.

                • weka

                  Chemical

                  noun

                  a compound or substance that has been purified or prepared, esp. artificially : never mix disinfectant with other chemicals | controversy arose over treatment of apples with this chemical.

                  From my computer’s dictionary. I think it’s a bit of a limited definition, but it serves to illustrate my point. To most humans on the planet, water is something that flows in rivers, you drink it or eventually die, and you can wash things with it. Sometimes it falls from the sky.

                  Honestly, most people don’t think of water as a chemical, and most people aren’t scientists. You can argue all you like about technical definitions, but it doesn’t help the debate in any way at all.

                  People who can write the chemistry name for water think they’re clever and/or funny, but we all have google and that pejorative meme is old and tired now.

                  • Murray Olsen

                    Once everyone figures out what dihydrogen monoxide is, we can worry about hydrogen hydroxide and hydroxylic acid as well. On a serious note, I take your point about communicating with non-specialists. We can’t stick to the technical meanings of words, but have to use them in ways that are understood. As long as this is done without conveying misinformation, I don’t object at all.

                    As far as fluoride goes, I doubt if it’s harmful in the quantities used and I can’t really be bothered learning more about it. The issue as far as I’m concerned is one of compulsory medication. If someone doesn’t want fluoride in their system, any caries is only going to be in their own teeth. Unless they want to bite me or kiss me, it’s none of my business.

                    I think a good argument can be made for many vaccination programs, but not for mass fluoridation. I’m bloody glad that I benefitted from programs against polio, smallpox, rubella, and tetanus, for example. I saw too many people only slightly older than myself who didn’t.

                    • The did a funny test in California where they asked people in the street should (a href=”http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dihydrogen_monoxide_hoax”>dihydrogen monoxide also known as H2O be banned and 9 out of 10 people said yes and signed the petition.

                    • The real joke here is that dihydrogen monoxide actually is toxic to aquatic life. A fish in water is a living fish, but a fish in dihydrogen monoxide is a fish dying from oxygen deprivation.

    • Polish Pride 1.4

      Or alternately control freaks could add fluoride to their own water if they choose to. :)

      • Colonial Viper 1.4.1

        Apparently its all very safe so yeah sounds like a do it at home job for the Fluoridistas.

      • weka 1.4.2

        “Or alternately control freaks could add fluoride to their own water if they choose to”

        Except this is a public health issue, so that doesn’t really work in terms of addressing the need.

        • Polish Pride 1.4.2.1

          If peoples teeth were literally falling out then yeah for sure but it is nowhere near that in fact the advantages are not that significant imho. I just don’t like the idea of chemicals of any kind being added to such a key resource. If you want it in your water add it yourself. Don’t force me or anyone that doesn’t want to have it to have no choice in the matter. Making fizzy drinks cost more than bottled water would be far more beneficial when it comes to combating tooth decay than adding fluoride to water… again imho.

        • Ugly Truth 1.4.2.2

          As soon as you talk about public policy in terms of need, you’re effectively only communicating with the brain-dead. Need and reason are more or less mutually exclusive.

          The original reason for fluoride was do dumb the population down.

          • One Anonymous Knucklehead 1.4.2.2.1

            :roll:

            We need better drivel.

            • Ugly Truth 1.4.2.2.1.1

              No need to be so hard on yourself. Just read up on how to construct a coherent argument and you’ll have a chance for improvement.

              • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                Could you be more vacuous? You comment here, day after day, demonstrating little but your own conceit, credulity and ignorance.

                The problem, twit, is that you persist in attempting to derive results from conclusions, and in doing so you make a laughing stock, which is why so many of us are laughing at you.

  2. Kia Ora

    It is all very well to look at the science of fluoridation and I commend the research for being done, but seriously, what is so hard about teaching children from an early age to do their teeth?

    What is also so hard about using some common sense and not having bottles of coke at the bedsides of children over night. If they really need a drink, get a glass of water.

    Through that my parents managed to save themselves a small fortune in terms of taking my brother and I to the dentist. The only time it got expensive was when I came off my bike in an accident and needed a crown, and when I had to have all four wisdom teeth taken out under anaesthetic.

    Common sense, really.

    • McFlock 2.1

      It’s not a replacement for personal oral hygiene, it’s a supplement. Not everyone has teeth like yours (although if you drank a lot of water as a kid and the supply had fluoride in it, who’s to say whether that might not be why?).

      • Colonial Viper 2.1.1

        A compulsory supplement? Where at least 299/300 kids being medicated get no benefit in terms of just one less decayed, filled or missing tooth?

        I don’t think so.

        • McFlock 2.1.1.1

          Well, given that the charts above show a mean association of around one less decayed, filled or missing tooth per child across the entire population, by your figure that one child who benefits retains in the region of 300 perfect teeth.

          Shark Boy, perhaps?

          • Colonial Viper 2.1.1.1.1

            Yeah whoops. When you feed 25 children fluoridated water, just 1 more of them ends up caries free.

            • McFlock 2.1.1.1.1.1

              Yes.
              And unless that kid would otherwise have had 40-odd DMFT, then it looks like at least some of their peers would have better teeth than without fluoride.

              But even so, that’s something like 4,000 kids with perfect teeth every year.

      • Colonial Viper 2.1.2

        In fact, if your children are non-Maori, mass medication fluoridation will only help say 1/500 or 1/600 kids, in terms of one less tooth affected by decay, filling or missing.

        499 out of the 500 children will get no benefit.

        Fucking hopeless mass medication. 0.2% of the non-Maori kids who swallow it might benefit, and even fewer adults if you can imagine that. Might be time to ditch it, like all of Germany has done for over 2 decades.

      • Mike S 2.1.3

        It’s not a supplement, it is classed as a medicine as it is not an essential nutrient.

    • What is also so hard about using some common sense and not having bottles of coke at the bedsides of children over night.

      ?!?!

      Sorry Robert, I’m having trouble understanding how you know that ever child’s bedside has a bottle of coke beside it. In all my years I’ve never seen such a thing. I’m not saying it’s impossible – but I’ve never seen it.

      This sounds suspiciously like like one of those unsubstantiated prejudices that certain right wingers like to bandy about, so blame can be apportioned, and the rest of us are no longer needing to be concerned.

      Like, every bene has a SkyTV dish…

      Every every wastes their money on pokies…

      Every bene blah blah blah.

      Just ask Rankin, McCoskie, and Tamaki. They’ll provide the rest.

      Ken Perrott has put his case. Let’s debate that rather than raise bogeymen that are easy to splash about, but can’t be substantiated.

  3. Saccharomyces 3

    Great article. I can’t believe that the anti-fluoride crowd get air time. Frankly I can’t believe that the Hamilton council were suckered in to giving in.

    • McFlock 3.1

      elections coming up and they hit on the “kick it to central government” dodge.

      Nothing scares politicians like the possibility of nutbars at public meetings screaming that you poisoned the water supply. Squeakiest wheel gets the grease.

      • Ugly Truth 3.1.1

        Facts are facts. Fluoride is a poison, and the dose argument doesn’t work because fluoride accumulates in the body.

        • One Anonymous Knucklehead 3.1.1.1

          Oh you’re a chemist and a biologist and a bush lawyer and an orgone technologist? When do you sleep?

        • Roy 3.1.1.2

          Everything you can absorb is a poison in excess. Here’s some other poisons: Vitamin A, Vitamin D, iron, zinc, selenium, copper, magnesium, sodium, chloride, iodide, oxygen, water. You can kill yourself by overdosing with the above and any other substance you can absorb. On the other hand all the above-listed substances are essential for survival, too.

          The most toxic substance known to man is Botulinum A. Know what the active ingredient in Botox is? Botulinum A. That’s right, at a low enough dose, the most toxic substance known to man can be safely injected as a cosmetic agent to smooth out wrinkles.

          The first and last rule of toxicology is that coined by Paracelsus: The dose makes the poison.

          Fluoride is readily absorbed but is also excreted over time. It is not considered to be a bioaccumulative poison like, say DDE.

          • Ugly Truth 3.1.1.2.1

            Actually it is bioaccumulative like DDT.

            http://withonebreath.wordpress.com/2008/10/30/fluoride-is-a-bioaccumulative-poison-1800-professionals-call-for-end-of-water-fluoridation/

            Fluoride is a Bioaccumulative Poison; 1,800 Professionals Call for End of Water Fluoridation

            Studies also show that only about 50% of the fluoride that is ingested (through drinking fluoridated water or swallowing toothpaste) is excreted by the body, which suggests that fluoride, like many toxic chemicals, is bioaccumulative. Scientists have found that fluoride accumulates in the brain, kidneys and bones, which can lead to lower IQ, behavioral/hormonal problems, tooth decay and bone cancer.

            • McFlock 3.1.1.2.1.1

              lol

              also from your source page:

              We discussed quite thoroughly the fluoridation of water supplies and how we were using it in Russia as a tranquilizer in the prison camps. The leaders of our school felt that if it could be induced into the American water supply, it would bring about a spirit of lethargy in the nation; where it would keep the general public docile during a steady encroachment of Communism. We also discussed the fact that keeping a store of deadly fluoride near the water reservoir would be advantageous during the time of the revolution, as it would give us opportunity to dump this poison into the water supply and either kill off the populace or threaten them with liquidation, so that they would surrender to obtain fresh water.

              We discussed in these schools, the complete art of revolution: the seizure of the main utilities, such as light, power, gas and water, but it was felt by the leadership that if a program of fluoridating the water could be carried out in the nation, it would go a long way toward the advancement of the revolution. ~ Oliver Kenneth Goff, 1957

              Fluoridation is a communist plot to keep people docile while the revolution happens, y’all.
              No wait, it’s capitalists buying a worldwide conspiracy of public health professionals to falsify data just so they can sell waste to local authorities.
              No wait, it’s the powers that be wanting to make the population more docile so that they don’t revolt.

              Maybe it’s just a plan to fiendishly help people keep their own teeth healthy, for longer.

              • weka

                So is it bioaccumulative or not McFlock? Couldn’t quite tell from your response to UT’s assertion that it is.

                • McFlock

                  Well, yes – in the teeth. A good thing. And at high exposures, bad in the teeth and bad in the skeleton.

                  As to the rest of the body, I have no idea, even with UT’s assertion. The lack of any demonstrated harm associated with fluoridation at NZ levels suggests to me that if it does occur, it does not occur to a level levels that causes detectable harm.

                  But UT (who has previously struck me as being a complete nutbar) linking to a site that claims fluoridation is a communist conspiracy suggests to me that the idea is akin to “cabbages growing on Mars”: there might be cabbages growing on Mars, but I’d need much more than that level of evidence before I countenance it as a reasonable possibility. Just another piece of idiotic crap on the internet, as far as I’m concerned.

                  • weka

                    “a site that claims fluoridation is a communist conspiracy”

                    I have a filter, which means I don’t read that part of the argument :-)

                    • McFlock

                      I’ve generally found that discovering such claims (e.g. “naz1s did it” or “commies did it” or “illuminati did it”) from a source behoves one to carefully check every other claim that source makes before mentioning the alleged fact in public.

                      Indeed, given the nature of the vague (if any) referencing, and the circular referencing that goes around lobbying sites, it’s actually less effort to look at the claim from scratch, a lot of the time. The folk with accurate claims usually don’t have a problem citing original sources.

            • One Anonymous Knucklehead 3.1.1.2.1.2

              :roll:

              UT, do you ever look for information that will contradict your notions?

              It’s embarrassingly easy to find.

              We seem to be back on baloney detection 101.

          • weka 3.1.1.2.2

            “The first and last rule of toxicology is that coined by Paracelsus: The dose makes the poison.”

            That’s true Roy. But the first rule of medicine is first do no harm. And the first rule of holistic health is don’t do things in isolation (or more likely, don’t pretend you can do things in isolation). The MoH can make a judgement call about the relative risk of harm for the population, but they can’t for individuals.

            I tend to think the relative risk of fluoride is lowish. But the problem is when you combine that with all the other chemical exposures we have not adapted to yet and set that alongside the health of the individual, including their genetic predispositions and environment. What does toxicology say about that?

            • One Anonymous Knucklehead 3.1.1.2.2.1

              …chemical exposures we have not adapted to yet…

              If they are so damaging how come life expectancy has increased so much?

              • weka

                Are you asking because you don’t know (I suspect you don’t), or because you think you know and are being a smart arse?

                The reason life expectancy has increased is largely due to improvements in diet, potable water, and shelter (warmth, dryness and lack of overcrowding). Those three things alone will give people better immunity (not getting sick in the first place) and better recovery from illness that would otherwise kill them, as well as some direct protection from disease (clean, potable water).

                But alongside that increased life expectancy we have increased chronic illness. We can have an argument now about whether that increase is because we’re living longer or getting more sick without dying, or both (I’d guess both).

                If I get time later I’ll try and dig up some analysis of the cocktail effect and how many chemicals we are exposed to that our great grandparent’s either weren’t or were but in much lower or less frequent doses. And bear in mind, it’s the cocktail that is as much as issue as the individual chemicals.

                • One Anonymous Knucklehead

                  There’s no need to be so defensive, it was a genuine enquiry. Given historic levels of exposure to for example, lead, you are going to be hard pressed to show that we are more exposed to hazard these days, but I guess it’s possible.

                  • weka

                    I guess I see a plethora of comments where people are being smart arses, it’s hard to pick the genuine ones now sometimes.

                    Lead… I think you missed the point. I don’t have the figures to hand, but it’s something like this: we’re now exposed to x thousand new chemicals that we weren’t before, either entirely new, or levels or frequency. This is such an obvious truth I’m surprised I have to explain it (other than coming up with an actual figure). Think about all the agricultural chemicals developed since ww2 for instance, compared to what rural people were exposed to before that for thousands of years. Or drugs, or food additives, or plastics, or anti-fungal/anti-microbials/disinfectants, antibiotics, petroleum products, synthetic dyes, paints, resins/glues, cleaning products, I could make a pretty long list…

  4. Colonial Viper 4

    You’re choosing to medicate 4.4M people with a substance which is known to change both bone and central nervous system cell function, in order that we get just one less filled, decayed or missing tooth per 300 or so kids?

    And when you break down the data, it’ll be obvious that most of those bad teeth belong to a very definite subsection of the population who could be very tightly targetted?

    No thanks.

    • McFlock 4.1

      lucky that’s not the case then.

    • NickS 4.2

      /facepalm

      ffs, I linked to papers refuting those claims, that clearly stated low concentrations of fluoride have no statistically link to negative health outcomes, other than very minor dental fluorosis when over 1.0mg/L. Over 1.5mg/L then there are minor drops in IQ, with other more serious issues occurring as concentration towards and over 3.0mg/L as indicated in studies of populations drinking from naturally fluoridated or polluted water supplies.

      To help remind you, info starts here:
      http://thestandard.org.nz/open-mike-19062013/#comment-651015

      And if you don’t accept the conclusions of the papers linked to, I suggest firmly you actually bother to tell us what’s wrong with the methodology, instead of going “lol-science-has-been-wrong!!!111!” like you’ve done in that thread.

    • Colonial Viper 4.3

      Yeah I screwed the magnitude. When you feed fluoridated water to 25 kids, just one more of them will end up caries free.

      Does fluoridated water do anything for adult teeth? Why is all the data for kids who are largely going to get new teeth anyway?

      • McFlock 4.3.1

        five years old and year 8 (I believe that’s around 13 if my math is correct, i.e. baby teeth gone). Gets both tooth sets.

        • Colonial Viper 4.3.1.1

          Ever see any data on older people? Say 18 year olds?

          • McFlock 4.3.1.1.1

            read the MoH link provided.
            2009 Oral health survey. Chapter 6: “Protective factors”.

            The answer to the question is “yes”.

  5. Lloyd 5

    The really scarey thing isn’t how many fillings the kids get. It is how much more parents have to pay for major dental surgery. This hits low income families hard.

    I understand it has been proven that dental costs for a population go up eight times more than the money saved by a council when it stops fluoridating. (reference anyone?) It would appear that legislation should be quickly passed requiring any council that stops fluoridating water should immediately set up a system for subsidising dental bills for its ratepayers that must spend eight times per annum on what was spent of the fluoride salt added to the water supply. Surely the Gnats would do this as they love making Councils jump through hoops.

    Anyone who argues that adding the fluoride to water is medication doesn’t understand that fluoride is natural and our ancestors evolved using much higher fluoride levels in their water than the water running off our highly leached soils in NZ. (Except for fresh North Island volcanic ash – that has enough fluoride in it to kill sheep which eat ash with grass).

    • Colonial Viper 5.1

      I understand it has been proven that dental costs for a population go up eight times more than the money saved by a council when it stops fluoridating. (reference anyone?) It would appear that legislation should be quickly passed requiring any council that stops fluoridating water should immediately set up a system for subsidising dental bills for its ratepayers that must spend eight times per annum on what was spent of the fluoride salt added to the water supply.

      Let’s do a reality check first shall we? Does unfluoridated Christchurch have 8x the dentists per capita as fluoridated Wellington?

      Do unfluoridated Christchurch dentists make 8x the money that fluoridated Wellington dentists make?

      Anyone who argues that adding the fluoride to water is medication doesn’t understand that fluoride is natural and our ancestors evolved using much higher fluoride levels in their water than the water running off our highly leached soils in NZ.

      Please give me some examples of which ancestral water ways or bodies of water in which ancestral countries you are talking about.

      doesn’t understand that fluoride is natural

      Asbestos and arsenic are “natural” too.

      • McFlock 5.1.1

        Let’s do a reality check first shall we? Does unfluoridated Christchurch have 8x the dentists per capita as fluoridated Wellington?

        Doesn’t follow – basically Lloyd’s assertion was that increase in treatment cost is 8x the cost of the sacks of fluoride put into the water supply, not that the treatment costs will increase eightfold.

        That having been said, I agree that pretty much all his assertions need citations.

        • Colonial Viper 5.1.1.1

          Doesn’t follow – basically Lloyd’s assertion was that increase in treatment cost is 8x the cost of the sacks of fluoride put into the water supply

          Ahhh ok.

    • Bramble 5.2

      Wrong. Dental care is free in NZ up to the age of 18. Any child that needs treatment that cannot be carried out by the dental therapist from the school dental service ( e.g. root canal fillings etc.) is referred to a dentist and all dental work is completed by the dentist at no cost to the parent. Fact.

  6. JoeB 6

    Those graphs all show that children in unfloridated areas teeth are improving at a faster rate than those in floridated areas. How does the blogger explain that?

    • lprent 6.1

      Perhaps you should look at *when* fluoridation started in those areas and how widespread it is, what the improvement in dentistry was, what changed diets there are, and how many countries were dropped from this pissant cherry picking graph. Basically it is crap. Pure unadulterated lying crap.

      Basically whoever did the graph you are referring to obviously had a lobotomy a long time ago because all it screams to me is someone doing a Nick Smith – and lying with numbers.

      • Colonial Viper 6.1.1

        Maybe fluoridation simply isn’t as influential a factor in dental health as compared to the 1950’s when it was first introduced, when countries were far poorer, dental education quite primitive and fluoride toothpastes far less used. (Fluoride toothpastes only started achieving major acceptance in the 1960’s and 1970’s is my understanding)

        My view is that people are carrying on with a decades old assumption that fluoridation is a “big gun” in reducing caries, but actually it is an assumption which is increasingly less and less true.

        If you want a better more robust chart lprent look at p35 of this OECD report.

        http://www.oecd-ilibrary.org/docserver/download/8109111ec012.pdf?expires=1371811853&id=id&accname=guest&checksum=52AA70341415CEE12AEE07ABAB4F6008

        The top 10 countries for child dental health are typically European and fluoridation free (and even the UK only has a small minority of its water supply fluoridated). Those top 10 countries have also typically had larger improvements in dental health amongst children even though they were already doing well, when compared to fluoridated countries like Australia, NZ and USA.

        The US and Australia, who introduced widespread fluoridation early on in the 1950’s, not only have so-so child dental health results by OECD data, but they also have mediocre (US) to lacklustre (Australia) improvements in child dental health.

        The anti-fluoridation poster child is of course Germany, which has been totally fluoridation free for decades. (West Germany since at least the 1950’s and East Germany since at least re-unification).

        Germany not only has the best dental health for children of all OECD countries, but has clearly also had the best dental health improvement out of all OECD countries. 100% fluoridation free.

        PS in certain high caries, low socioeconomic communities where use of fluoridated toothpastes is poor, I think that water fluoridation could be quite helpful. But pumping it out to 4.4M people because of those specific communities it not something I would do.

        • McFlock 6.1.1.1

          associated with 8% more kids being caries free and mean DMFT being cut by about a third is a pretty “big gun”, public health-wise.

          But what public oral health initiatives do we need to copy from Gremany to replicate their resuts? Other than “no fluoridation”, of course.

          • Colonial Viper 6.1.1.1.1

            associated with 8% more kids being caries free and mean DMFT being cut by about a third is a pretty “big gun”, public health-wise.

            Nah the recent advantage is more like 4% to 5% to fluoridation, not 8%. And like I said, if you are dealing with a population with mediocre dental health, that’s where we are in the middle of the OECD road, then fluoridation will seem more useful.

            But what public oral health initiatives do we need to copy from Gremany to replicate their resuts? Other than “no fluoridation”, of course.

            OK well we start with no fluoridation, like most of the other high dental performing OECD countries.

            • McFlock 6.1.1.1.1.1

              just going by the data in the post.

              But your approach to the public health question is a bit odd – a plan to achieve world class oral health across the population starts by eliminating the thing that is associated with (by your estimate) 4-5% more kids being caries free?

              • Colonial Viper

                fluoridation is associated with middling performance in the OECD dental health stats mate

                countries in the top 10 by absolute results and by dental health improvement over the decades tend to have zero or low usage of water fluoridation

                the first country to introduce widespread fluoridation and which still uses it very widely (USA) has experienced mediocre dental health improvement compared to non users of fluoridation.

                edit that OECD link times out

                google “OECD dental health among children 2009″ to find the report pdf

                • McFlock

                  Okay, so the only reason Germans have superlative pearlers is because they don’t fluoridate. Then why do non-fluoridated areas in NZ have shittier teeth than fluoridated areas?

                  • Colonial Viper

                    well, actually all areas of NZ have way shittier teeth than unfluoridated Germany, 90% unfluoridated UK etc.

                    It’s best practice in child dental health we need to be looking at and NZ doesn’t do it.

                    • McFlock

                      Well, sticking with Germany for a moment, I notice two things:
                      fluoridated areas in NZ are closer to Germany than the non-fluoridated areas; and
                      the OECD report had Germany with 77 dentists per 100k population, while NZ had 47 dentists per 100k pop.

                      And your first public health initiative is to remove fluoridation rather than, say, upping the number of dentists.

                    • lprent

                      There are lower levels of all sorts of trace elements in NZ waters and soils compared to a continental environment. We are after all a set of islands that have spent the last 45 million of years of separation from Antarctica twisting on the edge of some sea plates and bobbing up and down under the waves.

                      We don’t get the types of basaltic intrusions and vast ancient alluvial plains that are so common in other land masses. Instead we have the wastage of the plains derived from metamorphosed sea beds and subducting seafloor rock regurgitated from volcanoes. NZ is pretty poor in quite a few minerals that humans and other animals from richer mineral environments evolved in.

                      Selenium for instance through much of the mid-north island, and throughout much of the country. There are serious iron deficiencies in some parts of the country. There are parts of the country with some quite low calcium levels. Other parts where there are deficiencies in potassium.

                      Fluoride and other fluorines are one of the known things with low levels in NZ compared to a continental landmass of Germany and the ancient basaltic mountains throughout the english and scottish island.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      And your first public health initiative is to remove fluoridation rather than, say, upping the number of dentists.

                      Are you putting that option on the table, McFlock?

                      lprent – cheers.

                    • McFlock

                      Every option is on the table.

                      But my point is that making the first step the removal of an interventon associated with clear benefits is just obtuse. And if you weren’t so obsessed about the supposed corruption of your precious bodily fluids, then you are the one who would have looked at factors beyond fluoridation.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Every option is on the table McFlock? As long as you approve of it?

                      I never asked for fluoridation to be removed from any city’s water supply McFlock.

                      And unlike you, I’m not here to tell people what to swallow.

                    • McFlock

                      I never asked for fluoridation to be removed from any city’s water supply McFlock.

                      compare with:

                      But what public oral health initiatives do we need to copy from Gremany to replicate their resuts? Other than “no fluoridation”, of course.

                      OK well we start with no fluoridation, like most of the other high dental performing OECD countries. .

                      And you reckon you’re not trying to make me swallow something unpalatable.

                      By the way, how do you measure the toothpaste onto your brush? At 1ppm, you might accidentally double your daily intake if you just did it by hand.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      What do you care about how much toothpaste I use McFlock? F apparently has no risks associated with it.

                    • McFlock

                      I care that a scientific illiterate who can’t handle basic math wants to cancel an effective public health intervention because of, well, “oooo water shouldn’t have chemicals in it” or somesuch bollocks, just as long as they think they’re okay personally.

                      Epitomised in your comment here:

                      Fluoridate all 4.4M of us to get to those specific populations? No thanks. I get well more than enough fluoride daily from 3x use of Colgate Total.

                      And you have the gall to call someone else a “stuck up little shit” when they call you on your idiocy. Or maybe you’re just the sort of dickhead who thinks that “google” makes them an “autodidact” and substitutes for an “education”.
                      Either way it’s late, I’m tired, and the Dunning-Kruger waves emanating from your keyboard are giving me a headache.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      You seem to have mistaken yourself as my thesis supervisor or as my boss. You are neither. Fuck off.

                      wants to cancel an effective public health intervention because of, well, “oooo water shouldn’t have chemicals in it”

                      That water shouldn’t have added chemicals in it is the starting point for discussion, I agree.

                      I care that a scientific illiterate who can’t handle basic math

                      LOL mate. Shame that 50% of the NZ population don’t get fluoridated water and almost all of the EU, including several european states who have removed fluoride from their water since the 1970’s.

                      Apparently they think your judgement is shit, but I suppose you believe that they are “scientifically illiterate” as well, making you what, the superior intellect?

                      I’ll repeat it again. Fluoridation is the hallmark of mediocre to averaging performance in OECD dental statistics. Suck it up and accept it, slowcoach.

                    • McFlock

                      You seem to have mistaken yourself as my thesis supervisor or as my boss. You are neither.</blockquote
                      Thank fuck for that. The paperwork I'd have to fill in to report your incompetence would be quite prohibitive.

                      Apparently they think your judgement is shit, but I suppose you believe that they are “scientifically illiterate” as well, making you what, the superior intellect?

                      No, you moron. They are doing something different to New Zealand, and that difference is not just whether they fluoridate municipal water. They did actual research. They have a variety of other programmes, from more dentists to different delivery and cost structures, to differences in antibiotic use, to supplements in other vectors, to differences in food consumption, and so on. They didn’t just magically cancel fluoridation and everything improved. Your fixation on fluoride is like the original cargo cults, making “radios” out of bamboo so more supplies would arrive by ‘plane.

                      I’ll repeat it again. Fluoridation is the hallmark of mediocre to averaging performance in OECD dental statistics. Suck it up and accept it, slowcoach.

                      And I’ll say it again: when asked how you would improve an “average” level of caries in NZ kids, your only suggestion was to eliminate one of the things keeping levels “average” and above “approaching crap”. But apparently to point out the stupidity of this is a “psychological belief in the entrenched orthodoxy” (as opposed to your decidedly non-psychological belief, I suppose).

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Well thank fuck you’ve finally accepted that the way NZ is doing things is half pie, and that water fluoridation is not only completely unnecessary if you do things properly, you can often get significantly better results as shown in Europe. You’re not thick after all.

                    • McFlock

                      So you don’t understand quotation marks, either. :roll:

                    • Paul Campbell

                      I thought they used fluoridated salt in France and Germany much like we iodise salt – not everyone gets their fluoride from the water – some places (including the sea) have a natural fluoride level higher in their water than we have in NZ – some places actually need to reduce it

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Indeed Paul. Check out comment 7 below. Also in some countries you can get fluoridated milk.

        • ak 6.1.1.2

          So helping specific communities at minimum cost and zero risk to anyone else is not something you would do. Fair enough. Misjudged you. nigh nigh

          • Colonial Viper 6.1.1.2.1

            Don’t be a stuck up little shit.

            Fluoridate their water if you like, after all they are the populations for which it would do the most good and that is what I said above. Fluoridate all 4.4M of us to get to those specific populations? No thanks. I get well more than enough fluoride daily from 3x use of Colgate Total.

            And in Europe they prefer to make fluoridated salt available for people to buy.

            and zero risk to anyone

            You do know that F increases the movement behaviour of brain cancer cells, as well as altering the metabolic behaviour of bone cells in ways which aren’t fully understood right? What else don’t you know about how F affects body cells?

            • ak 6.1.1.2.1.1

              Yep fair enough. Sorry, didn’t realise your expertise was right up there with the established medico-scientific world. Can’t chat sorry, early start tomorrow – incidentally Colonel, not trying to be impertinent or anything, but how many signatures have you have personally got for the asset sales petition? (no worries, I can imagine how demanding a constant Shearer-bashing campaign can be, they also serve who only bitch and moan etc….)

              • Colonial Viper

                but how many signatures have you have personally got for the asset sales petition? (no worries, I can imagine how demanding a constant Shearer-bashing campaign can be, they also serve who only bitch and moan etc….)

                LOL, pissing contests are for 12 year olds buddy.

                btw, if Labour had had any leadership guts, it could’ve stopped these asset sales 12 months ago.

        • rosy 6.1.1.3

          My view is that people are carrying on with a decades old assumption that fluoridation is a “big gun” in reducing caries, but actually it is an assumption which is increasingly less and less true.

          Yep, agree. Relying on fluoridation may have made health authorities lazy and cheap about ensuring good dental hygiene in the population via equitable and affordable access to dental services, dental hygiene education, etc, etc…

          But, which do we do first? end fluoridation or improve access to dental care needs? or do both together?

          Typically NZ isn’t it? – ending an effective public health measure before other measures to improve dental health are well established.

          • ak 6.1.1.3.1

            right on Rose – but it’s not all Nz, just a handful of lazy gutless councillors and assorted dorks.

            • Colonial Viper 6.1.1.3.1.1

              It’s so sad for your world view that after 50 years, only 50% of the country is fluoridated. Good luck for the next 50 years.

              PS good to see you respect local democracy, but I’m sure you know better than the people from up on high.

            • rosy 6.1.1.3.1.2

              Councillors are the wrong people to decide if fluoridation should cease. Increases in the cost of fixing the teeth of children comes out of the health budget, not theirs. The whole decision-making process and how to meet the needs of the population requires assessment, imo of course. Hospitals have a hard enough time as it is with emergency dental health problems – adults and children.

              • Colonial Viper

                Yes because we want the country run by unaccountable appointed technocrats and not by elected officials? Think of the precedent there for a minute. To override the decision of the Christchurch City Council, which has very recently turned down fluoridation again, and say have a govt hand picked panel make the decision on local water instead. I’m not sure we want to go there (again).

                Germany and the UK have the best dental performance of the entire OECD. Germany has not fluoridated for over two decades (and even then it was East Germany), UK has a fluoridation rate of only 11%.

                Oh look here you go, the UK Government is going to take the decision away from elected representatives by legislation, so you have your wish

                http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-180373/Anger-fluoride-plans.html

                • rosy

                  The way i heard it the coucil has not listened to the community on this issue. I don’t think for a moment that the community should have technocrats run their lives and btw i support the view that there are measures other than fluoridation that may improve dental health in developed countries. This is why the whole issue needs revisiting.

                  The reason i think local councils shouldn’t make the fluoride decision is because they don’t wear the costs of bad teeth. Maybe local health boards should decide… They can get the latest best practice info and do have a vested interest in the outcomes and are elected officials.

  7. Mike S 7

    “Although the prevalence of caries varies between countries, levels everywhere have fallen greatly in the past three decades, and national rates of caries are now universally low. This trend has occurred regardless of the concentration of fluoride in water or the use of fluoridated salt, and it probably reflects use of fluoridated toothpastes and other factors, including perhaps aspects of nutrition.”
    SOURCE: Cheng KK, et al. (2007). Adding fluoride to water supplies. British Medical Journal 335(7622):699-702

    DMFT (Decayed, Missing & Filled teeth) Status for 12 year olds by Country
    – World Health Organization Data (2012) –

    Country DMFTs Year Status*
    Denmark 0.7 2008 No water fluoridation.No salt fluoridation.
    Germany 0.7 2005 No water fluoridation.67% salt fluoridation.
    England 0.7 2009 11% water fluoridation.No salt fluoridation.
    Netherlands* 0.8 2002 No water fluoridation.No salt fluoridation.
    Switzerland** 0.82 2009 No water fluoridation.88% salt fluoridation.
    Belgium 0.9 2009-10 No water fluoridation.No salt fluoridation.
    Sweden 0.9 2008 No water fluoridation.No salt fluoridation.
    Australia 1.0 2003-2004 80% water fluoridation.No salt fluoridation.
    Austria 1.0 2002 No water fluoridation.6% salt fluoridation.
    Ireland 1.1 2002 100% water fluoridation in study.No salt fluoridation.
    Italy 1.1 2004 No water fluoridation.No salt fluoridation.
    United States 1.19 1999-2004 64% water fluoridation.No salt fluoridation.
    Finland 1.2 2006 No water fluoridation.No salt fluoridation.
    France 1.2 2006 No water fluoridation.65% salt fluoridation.
    Spain 1.3 2004 11% water fluoridation.10% salt fluoridation.
    Greece 1.35 2005-06 No water fluoridation.No salt fluoridation.
    Iceland 1.4 2005 No water fluoridation.No salt fluoridation.
    New Zealand 1.4 2009 61% water fluoridation.No salt fluoridation.
    Japan 1.7 2005 No water fluoridation.No salt fluoridation.
    Norway 1.7 2004 No water fluoridation.No salt fluoridation.
    * The Hague | ** Zurich
    Tooth Decay data from:

    World Health Organization Collaborating Centre for Education, Training, and Research in Oral Health, Malmö University, Sweden. http://www.mah.se/CAPP/

    Salt fluoridation data from:

    Gotzfried F. (2006). Legal aspects of fluoride in salt, particularly within the EU. Schweiz Monatsschr Zahnmed 116:371-75.

    • Colonial Viper 7.1

      You can’t argue with people’s psychological belief in their own entrenched orthodoxy…even as that entrenched orthodoxy is shown to be more and more fragile, they will fight it harder and harder. This is the very definition of the term “die hard”. It is literally an argument against fundamentalists who cannot recognise that is what they are.

      btw nice find.

    • bad12 7.2

      What this particular graph shows is that there is obviously NO effect evident from having water fluoridated,

      As CV points out you can shove ‘the facts’ in front of peoples faces and they are still totally blind, how do the proponents for adding fluoride to water address the fact that Iceland with the same amount of dental caries as a % of population as New Zealand does not add fluoride to it’s water,

      The fact is MOST of the countries in this study have better dental outcomes than little old New Zealand wether or not they add fluoride or not,

      So, obviously those who are fixated upon ”the Health Department says it’s good for us” therefor it is argument are not going to be swayed by ‘actual facts’ and as exhibited in the comment below some of them will actually demand that EVERYONE is compulsorily dosed with the stuff, (fluoride), despite what this study clearly shows, which to anyone with half a functional, (brain that is), putting fluoride in the water makes not one iota of difference to dental outcomes the world over,

      Here’s a quote from the Wikipedia,”The greatest cause of tooth decay and cavities is by the production of acid by bacterial fermentation of the food debris accumulated on the tooth surface”, unquote,

      Anyone want to start an argument about the above??? this is what we do know about tooth decay,

      (1)The disease Amelogenesis Imperfecta (imperfect tooth enamel) occurs in the population at a rate of 1 in 718 to 1 in 14000, this is a disease which does not allow the enamel on teeth to fully form,

      Overlay the statistics for caries/tooth decay on the FACTS above and what have you got, essentially you have a corresponding number of people with imperfectly formed enamel on their teeth through a disease that adding fluoride to the water supply does not address as you do the number of people with caries/tooth decay,

      Consider this, tooth enamel begins to breakdown when exposed to an acidic enviroment, the correct scientific term for this is demineralization, this occurs at a PH level of 5.5,

      Wellington’s Te Marua water storage lakes and treatment deliver a water supply to household taps with a PH level of ???? 7.0-8.5,

      On the one hand Wellington’s water supply is delivering water with a PH level that science says will strip teeth of enamel thus allowing cavities/tooth decay to occur and then adding fluoride in the hope that this will re-mineralize the tooth enamel, as the study above clearly shows it apparently achieves nothing,

      What is the best method of preventing tooth decay, CV above has pointed this out also, brush em 3 times a day or better still brush em 20 minutes after eating anything,

      My opinion, along with food in schools we need tooth-paste and brush’s along with the continual education of the kids to brush after eating…

      • Colonial Viper 7.2.1

        So, obviously those who are fixated upon ”the Health Department says it’s good for us” therefor it is argument are not going to be swayed by ‘actual facts’ and as exhibited in the comment below some of them will actually demand that EVERYONE is compulsorily dosed with the stuff, (fluoride)

        If they kneel at the altar and take the holy sacrament, you shall too

      • Saccharomyces 7.2.2

        “Consider this, tooth enamel begins to breakdown when exposed to an acidic enviroment, the correct scientific term for this is demineralization, this occurs at a PH level of 5.5,

        Wellington’s Te Marua water storage lakes and treatment deliver a water supply to household taps with a PH level of ???? 7.0-8.5,”

        Ummmm, are you saying that 7-8.5 are really acidic?

        • bad12 7.2.2.1

          No not at all, i am simply pointing out 2 facts vis a vis tooth decay and the level of PH at which tooth enamel will begin to break down,

          i have not looked yet to see what level the PH of rainwater is as it falls from the sky, or what the optimum PH level is for human consumption,

          i do have a general idea that a PH of 7-9 leads to a elongated life-span for iron pipes but have yet to ascertain if such elongation applies to the human life span….

          • Saccharomyces 7.2.2.1.1

            Okay, you do realise that 7-8.5 isn’t acidic at all don’t you?

            Stupid question, plainly you don’t……

          • Colonial Viper 7.2.2.1.2

            Less than 7 on the scale is acidic, 7 is neutral on the scale, above 7 is alkaline.

            It’s a log scale, so the numbers close to 7 are fairly neutral eg 6 is only very mildly acidic, and 8 is only very mildly alkaline.

            But once you start getting down to 2, 1, 0.5, you’re talking stomach acid level then very quickly serious battery acid burns.

  8. Tamati 8

    Great to see Kevin Hague and Annette King both strongly in favour of fluoridation. Hopefully they will have the courage to do something about it!

    Personally, I thinking passing the authority to the DHB’s is probably the best idea. It would very swiftly lead to almost complete fluoridation across the country.

    • Colonial Viper 8.1

      Do DHBs have the water processing engineers and budget to install and operate fluoridation equiment?

      No?

      Well, this will be interesting then, won’t it.

      For all you other fluoride types. I’m quietly betting that the FDA never required full medicines safety testing on the fluorosilicate additive, because fluoridation first started in the 1950s and they didn’t do double blind placebo trials then.

      Let’s see the trial data if it exists.

      • millsy 8.1.1

        “Do DHBs have the water processing engineers and budget to install and operate fluoridation equiment?

        No?”

        They would delegate all that to the water “providers”.

      • Tamati 8.1.2

        One of the benifits of fluoridation is that is very very cheap. So yes I’m sure the DHBs could fund fluoridation.

        On your second point, it is logistically impossible to do a randomised controlled trial of water fluoridation because you can’t randomise where people live!

        • Colonial Viper 8.1.2.1

          don’t need that detail of evidence just go ahead and do it in other words.

          One of the benifits of fluoridation is that is very very cheap. So yes I’m sure the DHBs could fund fluoridation.

          It’s not cheap if it doesn’t do what it’s supposed to.

          • Tamati 8.1.2.1.1

            On that basis, we couldn’t definatively say that smoking causes lung cancer, as no randomised controlled trials were ever done!

            • bad12 8.1.2.1.1.1

              Yawn, yeah 10% of those who die of lung cancer are smokers, what caused lung cancer in the other 90%,

              Not smoking perhaps…

              • Tamati

                Are denying that smoking causes lung cancer?

              • Huginn

                Smoking tobacco causes 80–90% of lung cancers. Nonsmokers account for 10–15% of lung cancer cases, and these cases are often attributed to a combination of genetic factors, radon gas, asbestos, and air pollution including second-hand smoke.

                You can find the references here:
                http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lung_cancer

                • bad12

                  Yes my bad i got that slightly wrong, the question is that if smoking caused lung cancer why do only 10% of smokers get it,

                  Wouldn’t be anything to do with a genetic predisposition would it???

                  http://www..science20.com>medicine>cancerresearch>newsarticles

                  • Huginn

                    ‘ . . . only 10% of smokers’???????!!!!!!!!
                    You’re kidding, right?

                    • McFlock

                      probably not. Heart disease is the big killer, but lung cancer is the biggest condition that would be pretty much unheard of without smoking.

                    • Huginn

                      10% of smokers seems unbearably high

                    • bad12

                      Kidding, no not at all, if simply smoking causes lung cancer then everyone who smokes would get lung cancer,

                      If as the fanatics keep trying to brainwash you with ‘tobacco is a poison which kills half its users’, why does it only kill half the users,

                      The Health Department simply add numbers they wouldn’t have a fucking clue, if a smoker dies of heart disease, smoking killed them is it as far as Health departments are concerned,

                      that’s just simplistic bullshit used to brainwash the already simple….

                  • Arfamo

                    That was my GP’s contention some years back when she told me emphysema was in my future, rather than lung cancer. Can’t remember what percentage, but she said studies showed genetic predisposition was the major factor in smoking-related lung cancer.

    • muzza 8.2

      Tamati bro, what is your agenda, or is it simply that you’re not able to understand your position is flawed?

      I recall you said you were well read/informed on this topic, seems you have been drinking too much loaded water, eh!

      Whats your response on Mike S (7), above ?

      Do you have a preference of how dental health might be approached in NZ, free checks for kids, the less well off etc, or is it simply that mass medication, ticks all the boxes, for you?

      • Tamati 8.2.1

        1. What’s my agenda?

        A desire to improve the health of the nations children, a desire to reduce health inequalities and a desire that good quality science is used in public policy. And um … world peace.

        2. I was bought up in Christchurch, studied in Otago and have be medicated against my will in Auckland for the past 3 years.

        3. In reponse to Mike. There are multiple variables which contribute to dental caries, you can’t assess the effects of one without accounting for these other variables.

        4. If I was in charge of dental health in children what would I do?

        -Increase funding to dental nurses throughout the country, so they can be involved with their school communities and can upskill their abillities.

        -Implement a tax on soft drinks and ban food advertising during childrens programming.

        -Reinstate food standards for school canteens.

        -Mandatory fluoridation for all water supplies.

        And a few others.

        BTW Dental checks are already free for under 18s

        • bad12 8.2.1.1

          You were brought up in Christchurch, have you got really bad teeth…

          • Tamati 8.2.1.1.1

            No, I don’t.

            I have good teeth despite not drinking fluoridated water as a child.

            • bad12 8.2.1.1.1.1

              So if Christchurch 5 year olds have slightly better teeth as far as caries go than the rest of New Zealand without having fluoride added to the water supply why on earth would you want to add the stuff…

              • Colonial Viper

                Beholden to prior tradition and beliefs. (Simply observe the righteous indignation and self superiority from some pro-fluoridation persons).

                • bad12

                  Lolz, i am going to take a break and converse with the bricks in my chimney, they seem to respond better to ‘facts’….

              • Tamati

                As I said before there are multiple variables which cause caries, you can’t analyse one in isolation without accounting for the others. Hence why simply comparing nations or DHB regions tells you nothing.

                • Colonial Viper

                  It tells you that fluoridation may not be that influential a factor, especially if the top three countries in the OECD for dental health have fluoridation rates of 11% and less.

                  • Tamati

                    You can’t tell anything definatively without accounting for the other variables.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Is that true? Apparently some here are definitive enough of their beliefs to advocate for medicating everyone en mass, compulsarily.

                    • McFlock

                      as opposed to the patently incompetent who won’t let that stop them entrenching their opinion.

        • Huginn 8.2.1.2

          + 1

  9. bad12 9

    OK, lets bring this a little closer to home seeing that some are unconvinced by the international comparisons of tooth decay events in fluoridated and non-fluoridated countries,

    Christchurch, the countries second largest city, (am sure most of us have heard of the place, small town somewhere in the South), has NEVER fluoridated it’s water supply, yes NEVER fluoridated it’s water supply,

    So, Christchurch having never fluoridated it’s water supply must have the worst frigging teeth in the country right???,

    WRONG, and i quote, ”Oral health status data is collected by the CDHB,(Canterbury), community dental service and reported to the Ministry of Health for children in year 1 and 8, (5 years and 12-13 years),

    Figure 1 shows Canterbury DHB having a slightly greater % of children caries free, (tooth decay), at age 5 compared to New Zealand children over-all,

    Shit kids sorry to burst the bubble, maybe the Canterbury DHB is skewing their figures so as to receive LESS health ministry funding for oral health,

    The CDHB report goes on to say that children 12-13 years have also shown a higher % of caries free until 2010 where for some reason,(earthquake related???), that % reversed by 8%,

    http://www.healthchristchurch.org.nz/media/…childadolescentoralhealth.PDF

    So, my opinion is that the Canterbury DHB figures clearly point to the ‘fact’ that adding fluoride to water supply’s is simply f**king bulls**t as far as dental outcomes are concerned,

    But don’t let the ‘facts’ get in the way, give them all a dose of something, anything today…

    • Colonial Viper 9.1

      Must bow to the time honoured ritual of fluoridating water, the power of holy water thus made cannot be resisted by ordinary skepticism. If you’re not with us, you must be against us.

    • Populuxe1 9.2

      Christchurch also has one of the highest incidences of Irritable Bowel Syndrome in the world, what’s causing that then? It’s simplistic and scientifically illiterate to use Christchurch as a single example. For all I know it could be that Christchurch’s DHB is really good at dental hygine, or that Christchurch’s anomolous demographics favour oral hygine fetishism, or the Tooth Fairy really likes the place. Dude, do you even science?

      • Colonial Viper 9.2.1

        Since you just made a whole lot of hypothetical shit up and brought in the irrelevancy which is IBS, do you?

        Pay attention to the evidence Pop, even when it doesn’t suit your belief systems.

        • McFlock 9.2.1.1

          Pay attention to the evidence Pop, even when it doesn’t suit your belief systems.

          plank out of your own eye, and all that.

      • bad12 9.2.2

        LOLZ, this has to be a comic comment right???, if fluoridated water gives better dental outcomes as it’s proponents claim then the non-fluoridation of Christchurch water in terms of the claimed benefit of adding fluoride to water would have to lead to Christchurch children having worse dental out-comes than areas that do fluoridate,

        You don’t need a PHD to understand the simple facts as stated by the Canterbury DHB,

        Your spray of Christchurch may do this that or the other to achieve its slightly better dental out-comes for year 5 kids is really really ‘scientific’ isn’t it…

  10. bad12 10

    OK, the obvious next port of call in this debate would have to be the question, ”what are the perceived health ‘risks’/ ‘bad outcomes’ of adding fluoride to the water,

    IF specific health outcomes are suggested from having prolonged exposure to fluoride in the water supply then we need compare those specific health outcomes with the data from say Wellington or Auckland with the data from Christchurch to gain some understanding of any differences in the specific % difference in any particular instance of bad health out-comes suggested as resulting from the dosing of water supplies with fluoride,

    It may take a bit of digging to ascertain the true nature of any specific negative health out-comes from such use of chemical fluoride, right now i have an open mind as to whether or not there are such negative health outcomes to be found in the data…

    • Colonial Viper 10.1

      One part is around the medical ethics, civil rights and risks of ignoring the need for consent to treatment in any such programme of compulsory mass medication.

      It may take a bit of digging to ascertain the true nature of any specific negative health out-comes from such use of chemical fluoride, right now i have an open mind as to whether or not there are such negative health outcomes to be found in the data…

      Visible dental fluorosis occurs in 10% to 50% of people in areas with fluoridated water.

      In the USA approx 41% of adolescents demonstrate excess body fluoride content via visible dental fluorosis. Currently this is seen as a largely cosmetic issue, but in my view it represents metabolic fluoride overload.

      • McFlock 10.1.1

        but in my view it represents metabolic fluoride overload.

        Oh, in your view?

        Lol
        the MoH survey (p172) has lower rates of fluoridosis for every severity level (except “questionable”) in people living in areas with fluorodated water than non-fluorodated.

        Yep, by CV’s logic we should fluoridate all the water in NZ to lower the rates of dental fluorosis and “metabolic fluoride overload”.

        • Colonial Viper 10.1.1.1

          Oh McFlock, drink up.

          • McFlock 10.1.1.1.1

            Had it in my porridge this morning.

            Care to address the fact? You seemed to imply that fluoridation caused increased fluorosis in the US, but the NZ data seems to suggest that at MoH-recommended levels, (to use a technical term) you’re full of shit. Definitely something to do with alternative sources – maybe people really worried about fluoridation tend to drink more cups of tea.

            • Colonial Viper 10.1.1.1.1.1

              Nah enough mate. Previous to the last day or two of posts I was mildly though mostly unconsciously pro-fluoride in my positioning.

              After being forced to review a whole lot of material and arguments, what I recognise now is that internationally, a heavily fluoridated country like NZ fares no better in dental health than its peers. I’ve learnt that many advanced countries after introducing it have long pulled fluoridation from their populations. I’ve also learnt that in the OECD the top few performing countries either do not, or barely, fluoridate, their water supplies. In the case of the UK 11% or so of water is fluoridated despite most UK water naturally having F levels of less than 1ppm. And in NZ, fluoridation means roughly one more caries free kid out of 25. Not bad, but just so so.

              As always, participating on the Std has been a lovely learning experience.

              • McFlock

                Some countries stopped.
                some coutries don’t.
                Most of the Uk doesn’t.
                And a few thousand kids would have more caries-ridden teeth if you got your way.

                That’s the entirety of what you’ve learned?
                Pearls before swine…

                • Colonial Viper

                  lol dude

                  Most of UK doesn’t fluoridate

                  And they top OECD performance for child dental health, way ahead of NZ which fluoridates lots.

                  • McFlock

                    therefore, if we remove fluoridation we will have the best teeth in the world? :roll:

  11. Huginn 11

    Great article. Thanks
    Fluorodization is an involuntary dosing of the masses with a medical treatment that disproportionately benefits a minority that is hidden from most of us and whose care is the responsibility of others.

    Objectors have a point. It’s the same point that Margaret Thatcher was making when she said that ‘there is no such thing as society. There are individual men and women and there are families’.

    • weka 11.1

      Not quite. You seem to be confusing medical consent rights with libertarianism. Medical ethics are a social justice issue in the same way that the community taking responsibility for the more vulnerable is.

      Myself, and many of the others I see objecting to fluoridation of water supplies, believe that public funds should be used to target children at risk of dental problems. We just think it should be done a different way. Myself, I’d like to see something similar to the public health stop smoking approach, whereby there is a focus on what creates good oral health (diet, hygiene practices), and over time different strategies are used: legislation, education, health promotion etc. The reason I prefer this is that it has positive flow on effects for general health, not just preventing cavities.

      • Huginn 11.1.1

        Fluoridation costs an estimated $0.99 per person-year on the average in the US.

        It is one of the few public health strategies that saves more money than it costs.

        • weka 11.1.1.1

          So? That might be relevant if the ‘saved’ funds were being spent on health promotion, but they’re not. (and what are the NZ savings not the US ones?).

          You were equating people objecting to fluoridation with Thatcher. I pointed out the flaw in that argument. Care to respond to the points I raised?

          • Huginn 11.1.1.1.1

            Ken Perrott has shown that fluorodization of the water supply works.
            It’s effective, it’s certain and it’s cost effective.
            That’s the point of the article.

            His figures support the public economic argument for mass fluorodization.

            That leaves the philosophical argument that mass fluorodization is an unethical intrusion by the state upon the rights of the individual to choose and that this right to choose goes hand in hand with the responsibility to choose wisely.

            That’s a powerful argument, one that you’re buying into by advocating for education programs that will give individuals better information with which to make these important decisions.

            • Colonial Viper 11.1.1.1.1.1

              Nah. A commentator above said that Christchurch’s dental performance was similar or better than the national average. And Christchurch has never fluoridated before.

            • weka 11.1.1.1.1.2

              I didn’t read all of Perrott’s article because it is hard for me to trust a scientist who cannot write a report without getting into the ‘our opponents are idiots” argument. Pretty much every report of this kind I have read, where a scientist is trying to debunk ‘nutters’, contains false logic and misses relevant points. I can’t be bothered with it, and to pretend that it is unbiased information, and without an agenda, is dishonest. I take Perrotts article as a good attempt to present his side of the argument as he sees it (and I’m sure much of the science is sounds, but that doesn’t mean the logic or how the science is used is), but fails in a number of aspects.

              (likewise, I can’t be bothered reading much of the anti-flouridation lobby’s material for similar reasons).

              I don’t accept that fluoridation works as effectively as claimed, and that it is without risk. I do think that it’s probably quite useful in some instances, and that the risk is relatively low compared to many other things we are exposed to. I don’t believe that city and district councils have any business medicating all their ratepayers via the water supply.

              So your philosophical argument doesn’t follow. And your assertion that people against fluoridation are akin to Thatcher doesn’t stand.

              Which brings me to another point. It’s possible that were fluoridation not available in NZ, then the MoH would have to take more health promotion action re oral health. Which is what they should be doing. The reliance on fluoride possible means that we are worse off overall healthwise.

              • McFlock

                If there were no fluoridation then the MoH would still have exactly the same level of funding. Every year funders&planners get together to prioritise programmes with clinicians, and they deny far more initiatives than clinicians want, from traditional programmes to promising pilot studies, purely on cost:likely benefit analysis. There would be no “more health promotion action re oral health”.

                My perspective on the water supply is that if the municipality is providing a 99.99% pure water supply, and the only impurities are undetectable to consumers, provide a demonstrable association with health improvements for a significant portion of the population, have no detectable harm to consumers at those trace concentrations, and actually save in healthcare costs down the line… well, who could seriously object?

                • weka

                  I wasn’t talking about MoH funding though.

                  And the reason that the MoH doesn’t take a proactive health promotion approach is because of the paradigm they work within, not because of funding.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Sheeezus weka you are on fire today.

                  • McFlock

                    Funnily enough I was at a conference recently that consisted almost entirely of health promotion programmes from around the country, so I respectfully disagree.

                    • weka

                      Can you give some examples of what you mean by health promotion?

                    • McFlock

                      “Say Ahh” in Hawke’s Bay.
                      Wahakura and Pepi-pods
                      Mana Kidz (South Auckland)
                      Smokefree.
                      Every single leaflet in your local GP’s office.

                    • weka

                      I don’t know what the first three lines are.

                      Sorry if I offended you, I could be more tactful. My point, such as it was, is that mainstream health promotion is quite limited.

                    • McFlock

                      No worries. Sorry I was a bit terse – more just rattling the immediate ones off, more than anything else.

                      Say Ahh and manakidz are based aroung rheumatic fever swabbing and education.
                      Wahakure and pepipods are safe-sleep containers for babies, as well as some SUDI education stuff.

                      From my perspective it seems that there are lots of programmes, but most of them are highly targeted simply because the money isn’t there to roll them out country-wide with high profiles. A good exampe is the GP office – basically if someone has an issue, the doctor can deliver the additional information right there to only those who have that issue.

                      What would you regard as a “health promotion” project?

              • Macro

                Very sound reasoning weka. It’s not the task of councils to medicate their ratepayers. And it’s not the same as other water treatments – eg chlorination, and flocculation. “Fluoridation” is done for “medical” reasons alone.

                And I quite agree regarding the health promotion. Fluoridation is seen by the MoH as the number one arm of fighting tooth decay in this country – despite the fact that there are as many studies showing it to have little effect as there are to the contrary. Were that to be removed perhaps we might have a much more effective Oral Health programme directed at those who need it most.

        • Colonial Viper 11.1.1.2

          The US is one of the most fluoridated nations on the planet, has a middling score in terms of OECD dental health, and one of the worst records in the OECD for dental health improvement. Like most areas, not an area to follow them in.

          • McFlock 11.1.1.2.1

            I’d be looking at their access to dental care, first

            • Colonial Viper 11.1.1.2.1.1

              Absolutely. Their socialised free dental care for under 18s leaves us behind somewhat. It also covers teeth whitening and straightening (if you live in LA). ;)

  12. Tamati 12

    So what do all you Green Party evangelists make of Kevin Hague “strongly supporting” fluoridation?

    Perhaps time to pass a policy at conference, putting him in his place?

    Or have the party hierachy siezed power from the membership?

  13. chris73 13

    This is one of those issues that isn’t left v right but people who spend a little too much time on the net v those that accept the overwhelming scientific evidence thats been going for decades

    • Colonial Viper 13.1

      That “overwhelming scientific evidence” you speak of must be why West Germany got rid of fluoridation in the 1950’s, and when they unified with East Germany more than 20 years ago, they told the East Germans to get rid of it too. And to this day, fluoridation of water is banned in Germany.

      • chris73 13.1.1

        And I’m sure other countries add fluride to the water so whats your point?

        • Colonial Viper 13.1.1.1

          That there is no “overwhelming scientific evidence” as evidenced by the very scientifically and technically capable Germans having chosen against water fluoridation for half a century, and you just made that shit up to sound good.

  14. infused 14

    Water Filters don’t remove fluoride. So there really is no choice. Bottled water does not have it removed either.

    Distillers are the only way to remove it, but then bring other issues (still trying to find answers to it).

    Enough fluoride is delivered by brushing your teeth twice a day.

    Personally, I’d rather have it removed, however, I can accept that in poorer places, it makes sense to add it to the water.

    Quite surprised to see CV against this.

    • Colonial Viper 14.1

      Where on earth have you stated your proposal before that I have come out against it? Come on man, get with the story.

      I’m certainly not against targetted fluoridation of the water of specific communities which need it, especially on a limited timeframe (10 years or less) while other dental health improvement measures are undertaken.

      However for a child who already brushes 2-3x per day with fluoride toothpaste, having fluoridated water as well is way too much and you can see it in fluorosis of the teeth (and probably bones, although you can’t see those…)

      • infused 14.1.1

        I only quickly skim read this thread as I’m a day late.

        Correct, something I got as a kid. Spots on my teeth and nails from taking fluoride tablets on a farm (they tasted good :()

        I did a whole lot of reading about a week ago on this as I just bought a distiller. From reading, it seems fuck all is even delivered by water to teeth anyway. Toothpaste has a much better effect.

        It also only really has an effect on kids… so why bother?

        Distillers are quite cool I must say. I’d be keen to find the exact facts on them though since there seems to be a lot of misinformation on the net.

        • Colonial Viper 14.1.1.1

          Pretty much.

          It also only really has an effect on kids… so why bother?

          Yeah it’s weird. You medicate 4.4M people to try and make a (sometimes very) small difference to a bit over 1/10 of them.

          • McFlock 14.1.1.1.1

            I guess road safety ads targeted at youths shouldn’t be on national TV then, because most people who see them won’t be in the target audience.

            • Colonial Viper 14.1.1.1.1.1

              At least you have the choice to turn the fucking ads off if you want to.

              • McFlock

                It’s called a “roof tank”.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Meh or just move to one of a couple of dozen NZ towns and cities which have got rid of fluoridation, or never introduced it to start with.

                • weka

                  “It’s called a “roof tank”.”

                  Nice to see the collective responsibility argument fail.

                  • McFlock

                    How so? We’re talking about the people who are so outraged public money is spent on health advertising not marketed at them that they’ll turn the TV off rather than watch the ad.

                    • weka

                      No idea who you mean re TV ads.

                      I thought you were making the argument that people who don’t want fluoridated water could use rain water. Not everyone can afford to install a rain water tank (or run a water filter assuming that it works).

                    • McFlock

                      yeah, CV did a dodge again – he started by saying that fluoridation was bad because it exposes everybody but theoretically only heps a few. Same with ads.

                      Then he switches to whether you can “opt out” (turn the TV off) being the bad thing about it.

                      As for your argument re: the cost of rainwater: worrying about <1ppm fluoride is essentially a "first world problem" which I suggest is not the daily talk of the needy in NZ (more "how do we put stuff in the water in the pot to feed the kids"). I am sure that for those poor people for whom an undetectable-without-scientific-equipment, no-detectable-harm-but-definite-positive-association trace-element addition to their 99.9% pure water supply is at the forefront of their minds, alternative sources will present themselves. E.g., a bucket.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      yeah, CV did a dodge again – he started by saying that fluoridation was bad because it exposes everybody but theoretically only heps a few. Same with ads.

                      Please be clear. I never likened it to TV ads, but you did. And it’s not truly analogous because you don’t literally swallow the ad into your body.

                    • McFlock

                      but they’re putting thoughts into your braaaaaaiiiiiinnn!!!
                      Damned government – how do they know that the “ghost chips” ad won’t make people hungry and cause obesity in millions?

                    • RJLC

                      McFlock – a word in your ear, you’ll find it difficult to convince anti-vaccers, climate change deniers, anti-fluoridation activists etc.
                      All such groups know better than the world’s medical, public health and scientific communities. How so? the power of google, activist and denier websites.

                    • McFlock

                      true, but occasionally CV comes up with something useful. And it was definitely a wide-ranging discussion – got to look up a few articles in a field that’s only slightly overlaps my own. :)

            • Saccharomyces 14.1.1.1.1.2

              Likewise the depression ones, the drink driving ones, the pay your fines ones.

            • infused 14.1.1.1.1.3

              Yeah because that’s the same as mass medication.

  15. infused 15

    Also to note, I think the CDC (US) has just recommended lowering the dosage to 0.7 ppm as it has found we now get fluoride from many different sources.

    • Colonial Viper 15.1

      Yep.

      Also the “dosage” doesn’t take into account someone’s physical condition and size. You can imagine a 55kg adult drinking a glass of water gets double the “dosage” of someone who is 110kg drinking a glass of water.

      And as you inferred previously, when you are just a small kid knee high to a grasshopper…

      • Macro 15.1.1

        Actually if you are a bottle fed infant – you exceed the maximum allowed dosage for H2F6Si daily.

        Funnily enough – nobody seems to want to discuss this.

        Best to not think about it I guess.

        • McFlock 15.1.1.1

          actually, bottle-fed babies in fluoridated areas turned into vampires.

          • Macro 15.1.1.1.1

            If you buy a bottle of fluoride tables – it says on the bottle – “do not give to those under 3″ or words to that effect. Now I wonder why that is?

            • McFlock 15.1.1.1.1.1

              Because it’s a set dose (e.g. 25mg), not a relative dose (e.g. 0.7ppm).

              • Macro

                Correct. So you are happy then for an infant to get a relative dosage that will take them above the recommended maximum dosage of 0.02 mg/kg per day?

                • McFlock

                  3½ kilo average newborn birthweight, 900ml fluid intake, 0.7mg/L, the average baby might be nudging the area. I’m cool with that, given the lack of reports of babies dropping dead because they broke your 0.02mg/kg line in the sand.

                  • Macro

                    Not my line in the sand mate..

                    and it’s NOT 0.7mg/L in NZ by the way but 1.0mg/L the EPA in the states have have recently reviewed their policy and have recommended the lower level.

                    you can look it up if you like, but i haven’t the time – nor the patience – to argy bargy

                    • McFlock

                      Quibbling of rounding errors aside, the point still stands that if babies were overdosing on fluoridated water in NZ, we’d know about it.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      no one is looking for it or tests for it, and you can’t check for fluorosis of teeth when there ain’t any

                    • McFlock

                      it would be present in the teeth that are forming. Given they start forming in the embryo, yeah. You might want to try looking stuff up again.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      nah can’t be assed

                    • McFlock

                      won’t stop you forming an opinion, though

                    • Macro

                      Nor does it stop you McF!!
                      Just because you aren’t aware of any children with detrimental effects from excessive fluoridation doesn’t mean there are none. Furthermore the side-effects of this medication are only now becoming apparent. So I guess its only understandable that some health professionals (as in all professions) are behind the eight ball as it were. There are many instances in medical history where a medication is introduced, only to find some way down the track, that its not all beer and skittles.
                      Here are some of the known side effects:
                      Fluorosis
                      reduced intellectual capacity
                      http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3409983/
                      increased bone and pancreatic cancers in fluoridated areas
                      http://www.webmd.com/cancer/news/20060406/does-fluoridation-up-bone-cancer-risk
                      fluoride is known to accumulate in the thyroid and pineal gland

                      The Australian Kidney foundation and its USA equivalent no longer support the fluoridation of public water. People with chronic kidney disorders are unable to effectively eliminate it.

                      It was because of the effects coming to notice that the EPA recommended the lowering of fluoridation rates from 1.0 to 0.7 mg/L

                      Now I’m sure you will want to have the last word – so go right ahead! I’ve said what I want to say on the matter and will leave it at that.

                    • McFlock

                      Why thankyou.

                      Our exploratory analysis found an association between fluoride exposure in drinking water during childhood and the incidence of osteosarcoma among males but not consistently among females. Further research is required to confirm or refute this observation.

                      Further research here:

                      Our ecological analysis suggests that the water fluoridation status in the continental U.S. has no influence on osteosarcoma incidence rates during childhood and adolescence.

                      You will also have read the commentary by the phd supervisor mentioned in the article, titled “Caution Needed in Fluoride and Osteosarcoma Study”. They go so far as to state:

                      This issue of Cancer Causes and Controls includes a paper with results from an analysis of a subset of participants in our ongoing study of fluoride and osteosarcoma. The paper, “Age-specific fluoride exposure in drinking water and osteosarcoma”, presents a partial view of this ongoing study. We would like to advise the readers to be especially cautious when interpreting the findings of this paper for several reasons. The authors themselves have already raised a flag of caution in their final paragraph with the note that they are aware of additional findings from other incident cases that appear not to replicate the findings from the cases presented in their paper.

                      Basically, for the hazards even partially hinted at (by the articles touted by the lying anti-fluoridation lobby), the weight of the research evidence indicates that they do not apply at the levels of fluoridation in NZ.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Quibbling of rounding errors aside, the point still stands that if babies were overdosing on fluoridated water in NZ, we’d know about it.

                      0.7mg/L and 1.0mg/L is a large difference in concentration mate. A 43% increase in fact.

                      For you to call it a “rounding error” suggests a lack of intellectual care and finesse on your part.

                    • McFlock

                      While you’re quibbling over fractions of parts per million, my point still stands that if babies were overdosing on fluoridated water in NZ, we’d know about it. For example, fluorosis rates would be higher than in non-fluoridated areas.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Like I said, you don’t actually give a shit about the science.

                    • McFlock

                      Science is about real-world demonstrations that disprove a hypothesis.

                      I not only give a shit about it, it’s why the point still stands that if babies were overdosing on fluoridated water in NZ, we’d know about it, mister “metabolic fluoride overload”.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      43% more fluoride, 43% less, no problem to you I see. Tell you what, let’s split the difference and go for 43% less than 0.7 ppm = 0.4 ppm as a good balance.

                      After all, we’re talking about irrelevant homeopathic levels of fluoride here, so I’m not sure why your knickers are in a twist.

                    • McFlock

                      How about we go the other way, make it 2%. The point still stands that if babies were overdosing on fluoridated water in NZ, we’d know about it.

                      I suspect at 2% concentration, it’s be very obvious indeed. Then you’d be able to point to the demonstrable harm for babies (and many other people) overdosing on fluoridated water. In fact I suspect that the hospitals would be full, if not the morgues.

                      But at <1ppm in New Zealand? The point still stands that if babies were overdosing on fluoridated water in NZ, we’d know about it. Show me the harm. Disprove my null hypothesis. Please. That’s how science works.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      “Show me the harm!” lol Jerry McFlock

                    • McFlock

                      You’re the “lol”.

                      You’ve gone from pretending to have rudimentary scientific skills (like looking shit up) and using big-boy words (like “metabolic”), to ignoring an entire comment (except for the four words that give you the opportunity to paraphrase a pop-culture meme so vacuous that Key’s used it).

                      You’d be fucking hilarious, apart from the fact that the merest possibility of idiots like you turning up on the hustings led Hamilton councillors to overrule the wishes of its citizens and make a stupid decision.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Hey McFlock, I hear the biggest water fluoridators of the OECD i.e. Australia, NZ and USA are well down the dental health league tables for children, and that the best performing countries eg Germany, UK, Denmark, Switzerland, Netherlands don’t fluoridate at all (UK does for just 11% of its population though).

                      Shame eh.

                    • McFlock

                      now you’re a broken record. See my response here when you last spouted that line.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Fact remains. Countries with high levels of water fluoridation seem to fail to improve their dental health past a certain point.

                    • McFlock

                      Their heart disease rates are probably lower, too. Does that mean that if we remove fluoridation then our heart disease rates will go down, too?

                      Maybe one day you’ll hit page five of “Baby’s First Epidemiological Study” and start looking at confounding factors and correlations. Does Spot run because of the ball’s movement, or is the majority of Spot’s movement independant of the ball’s motion?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Shame that the best performing countries in the OECD hardly fluoridate water. And the ones which do are well down the list. Yes, I’m sure that must be “confounding” for you.

                      It’s very amusing you break out the “heart attack” diversion. We’re talking about fluoridation and dental health, not your red herrings.

                    • McFlock

                      Shame that the best performing countries in the OECD hardly fluoridate water.

                      Therefore, if we remove fluoridation we will have the best teeth in the world? :roll:

                      SPOILER ALERT: when you get to page five, you’ll get the point. And understand that “confounding” also has a specific technical meaning. idiot.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      lol McFlock, keep kowtowing to your orthodoxy mate, however it seems like half of the country’s water supply does not.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Therefore, if we remove fluoridation we will have the best teeth in the world? :roll:

                      Oh no, nothing that drastic. Just suggesting that the effect of water fluoridation is relatively small and that there should be a permanent moratorium on any additional water fluoridation schemes.

                    • McFlock

                      keep kowtowing to your orthodoxy mate

                      lol
                      That’s the CV equivalent of:

                      *****
                      *****
                      *****
                      SYNTAX ERROR
                      *****
                      RUNTIME FAIL
                      *****
                      REDO FROM START
                      *****
                      *****
                      *****

                    • McFlock

                      Just suggesting that the effect of water fluoridation is relatively small and that there should be a permanent moratorium on any additional water fluoridation schemes.

                      Ah, we’re moving again after the restart.

                      I’m figuring that the “there should be a permanent moratorium” clause is just a rehash of “the germans don’t do it, so we shouldn’t”. Fairly stupid argument.

                      As for the “effect of water fluoridation is relatively small”, we can eliminate or reduce many confounding factors by comparing like with like.

                      Fluoridated vs non-fluoridated areas show a significant increase in tooth quality in fluoridated areas. Certainly not conclusive in itself, but much stronger than “the germans stopped fluoridating and have better teeth than us”. The access to dentists is equivalent, for a start (as opposed to a difference of somethng like 47/100kpop versus 77/100kpop).

                    • Colonial Viper

                      lol

                      one additional cavity free kid out of every 25 children; no real positive impact on adults. That’s what I call slight. The effect is greater in poorer deprived areas of course, and far less in wealthier areas.

                      Plus, children get more than enough fluoride from just brushing, which is most of them.

                    • McFlock

                      one additional cavity free kid out of every 25 children; no real positive impact on adults. That’s what I call slight.

                      900,000 kids 0-14 in NZ according to NZStat.
                      36,000 more kids moving into adulthood with all their teeth.

                      But even if think of those 36,000 as “slight”, what about the others who have significantly, detectably improved (but not quite perfect) teeth? Why do you ignore those kids? Do you not care about them, either?

                      Plus, children get more than enough fluoride from just brushing, which is most of them.

                      the fact that there are differences between fluoridated and non-fluoridated areas suggests otherwise.

                      But then you can measure your daily milligram dose of fluoride simply by how heavy your brush feels. /sarc

                    • Colonial Viper

                      900,000 kids 0-14 in NZ according to NZStat.
                      36,000 more kids moving into adulthood with all their teeth.

                      You really are an insidiously and deliberately misleading prick. The measure includes not just missing but also decayed and cavitied teeth.

                      the fact that there are differences between fluoridated and non-fluoridated areas suggests otherwise.

                      Nah, you’re being confounded again. Those differences in effect shrink even further when you excise out at risk groups eg. Maori children. BTW as I have said before, I have no issue with water fluoridation in areas where socioeconomic status is worst and cavity counts are high.

                      But then you can measure your daily milligram dose of fluoride simply by how heavy your brush feels. /sarc

                      Of course I can, can’t you? /sarc

                    • McFlock

                      lol CORRECTION

                      Your “one in twenty-five” ratio, where did you get that from? Because the MoH data in the post is 8%, not 4%.

                      So that’s 72,000 kids with caries-free teeth, not 36,000. Still “slight” to you, no doubt. And tens of thousands with better (but not perfect, teeth), of course.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      lol wrong as usual McFlock. Shame you can’t read graphs.

                    • McFlock

                      You really are an insidiously and deliberately misleading prick.

                      lol. A gentle disagreement with some phrasing, perchance? Still, it is a significant difference. Better heavy-metal fillings in a five-year old’s mouth (do they still use mercury?) than a little bit of fluoride in the water.

                      So we’ll make it “72,000 kids with all their teeth in perfect condition“. Better?

                      Those differences in effect shrink even further when you excise out at risk groups eg. Maori children.

                      Yes indeed. We get a much clearer picture of the effects on New Zealand children when we choose to ignore 20% of New Zealand children. /sarc

                      Those differences in effect shrink even further when you excise out at risk groups eg. Maori children. BTW as I have said before, I have no issue with water fluoridation in areas where socioeconomic status is worst and cavity counts are high.

                      I agree that you’ve mentioned several times that you’re happy to impose “forced mass medication” on Maori communities. Just not the, er, “more affluent” communities.

                      lol wrong as usual McFlock. Shame you can’t read graphs.

                      Not graphs. The table in the post. “Effect of fluoridation of % carries free and mdmf”. Here, I’ll repeat it for you:

                      Effect of fluoridation of % carries free and mdmf
                      Year 8

                      ……………………Total Maori
                      Carries free (%)
                      8.86 10.42
                      MDMF*……..…… -0.48 -0.81

                      5 years

                      ……………………Total Maori
                      Carries free (%)
                      8.05 12.46
                      MDMF*……..…… -0.63 -1.38

                      Seriously, were you trying to estimate “4%” off a graph? That’s bold of you. But I’ll compromise and take that as the lower bound of the estimate, and the 2002-11 aggregate data would be the upper end (if the 2007 step-change is accurate rather than a systemic data quality change).

                      So that’s 36,000 to 72,000 kids with all their teeth in perfect condition.

                      By the way, how do you know that your daily dosage of fluoride is in the sweet spot between “enough” and “metabolic fluoride overload”, Doctor Viper?

        • Colonial Viper 15.1.1.2

          That sounds about right, Macro. Water fluoridation is a big and very blunt tool. Many countries have determined ways to use fluoride to improve dental health in a more intelligently targeted and selective way.

    • Macro 15.2

      That is actually the rate for treating the water supply.

      The main source of Hydro FluoroSilicic acid, in NZ is from fertiliser works.

      http://www.cdc.gov/fluoridation/fact_sheets/engineering/wfadditives.htm
      ‘Most fluoride additives used in the United States are produced from phosphorite rock. Phosphorite is used primarily in the manufacture of phosphate fertilizer. Phosphorite contains calcium phosphate mixed with limestone (calcium carbonates) minerals and apatite—a mineral with high phosphate and fluoride content. It is refluxed (heated) with sulfuric acid to produce a phosphoric acid-gypsum (calcium sulfate-CaSO4) slurry.

      The heating process releases hydrogen fluoride (HF) and silicon tetrafluoride (SiF4) gases which are captured by vacuum evaporators. These gases are then condensed to a water-based solution of 23% FSA with the remainder as water.

      Approximately 95% of FSA used for water fluoridation comes from this process. The remaining 5% of FSA is generated during the manufacture of hydrogen fluoride or from the use of hydrogen fluoride in the manufacturing of solar panels and electronics.”

      Thames (where I live) gets its FSA from a fertiliser company in Tauranga.

      Because it is highly toxic you aren’t allowed to dump it in rivers, land fill, or the ocean. But you can get councils to pay for it and add it to the public drinking water.

      • McFlock 15.2.1

        Because it is highly toxic you aren’t allowed to dump it in rivers, land fill, or the ocean. But you can get councils to pay for it and add it to the public drinking water.

        When was the last time anyone “dumped” anything at <1ppm?

        • Macro 15.2.1.1

          ????????? did i say that?

          • Colonial Viper 15.2.1.1.1

            McFlock is an expert dissembler. Watch him.

            Fluoridating water is a good way for corporates to earn a few bucks selling what would otherwise be a manufacturing waste by-product.

            • McFlock 15.2.1.1.1.1

              “expert dissembler”
              Yeah, pointing out that you don’t understand the big words you try to use is such a dirty trick.

              • Colonial Viper

                McFlock my good man, you’re intellectually clever yet quite arrogant at the same time. Keep drinking the (fluoridated) Kool Aid. Thankfully, about 50% of NZers and 95% of the EU are not.

          • McFlock 15.2.1.1.2

            Oh, so you were saying that if something is illegal to be dumped into waterways at 23% concentration, it’s relevance to <0.0001% concentration in the water supply is …?

            • Colonial Viper 15.2.1.1.2.1

              More dissembling.

              Starting point 23% but 1km down the stream <0.1%

              Still not allowed to do it

              • McFlock

                now who’s “dissembling”?
                It’s the effect of dumping they give a shit about. Not the inconsequential concentrations a km down the line.

                • Colonial Viper

                  Oh don’t get snotty just because I’m using the same tricks as you

                  • McFlock

                    I know you can’t tell the difference, but no, you’re not.
                    I actually try to demonstrate a point, in this case the fact that dumping 23% fluoride is not the same as “dumping” 99.99%pure water. With one they’re concerned about killing the fish and flora, in the other they just give a shit about flow rates.

  16. Macro 16

    I am well aware of what i did say and i never said that! Previously the stuff was vented into the atmosphere causing people animals and plants living around the works to die or get very sick. So they had to strip it from their exhausts (using the process I linked to above) and leaving the works with a load of highly toxic material.

  17. Tangled up in blue 17

    Great post, thank you.
    \
    Imo it’s important to illustrate that the anti-fluoride crowd aren’t typical of the left-wing but rather an irrational few out on the peripheral.

  18. RonL 18

    “Mr Johnson said last week that the government believed that adding fluoride to drinking water was “an effective and relatively easy way to help address health inequalities—giving children from poorer backgrounds a dental health boost that can last a lifetime.”

    But some of the scientists who led the research that the government commissioned into fluoridation argue that the move is premature, and they accuse the Department of Health of selecting data to fit its agenda.

    In 1999 the department commissioned the University of York’s NHS Centre for Reviews and Dissemination to review the available evidence. Although that review found no conclusive evidence of harm, the researchers attributed this result to weak studies and to the difficulty of detecting small, delayed health effects. The researchers found some evidence of reduction in dental caries but were unable to conclude that fluoridation reduces social inequalities in dental health.

    Iain Chalmers, editor of the James Lind Library in Oxford, who sat on the York study’s review panel, said, “I’m very disappointed that the Department of Health apparently thinks no further research is necessary before taking such a step. If there’s one message that emerged from the York review, it’s that better quality evidence is needed.”

    Iain Chalmers and Trevor Sheldon of York University, who led the York review, laid out the uncertainties surrounding fluoridation in a BMJ article last October (2007;335:699-702 doi: 10.1136/bmj.39318.562951.BE). Professor Sheldon also questioned the government’s use of data from another study in a letter to the BMJ (2007;335:840-1 doi: 10.1136/bmj.39374.404502.BE).”

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2244726/

  19. RonL 19

    Ken Perrott claims that the graph showing downward trends in both fluoridated and non-fluoridated countries is not evidence-based,

    The British Medical Journal presnted an even more compelling one… it’s authors include the father of evidence-based medicine.

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2001050/pdf/bmj-335-7622-ac-00699.pdf

    [lprent: Actually Ken did not say that. What he said was that the graph was useless cherry-picking because they only showed two points per country and only looked at a single factor ignoring all other changes in dental practice and hygiene in those countries. And yes I have read your comments over at OP with a certain amount of disbelief that Ken was so nice to you...

    ..father of evidence-based..

    You don't help your credibility nor encourage people to read your links when you use this kind of florid dumbarse bullshit. It just makes you look like you have a limited grip on reality.

    Whoever was the "father of evidence-based medicine" has been dead for centuries and probably never wrote a single article for a medical journal. Those are a comparatively recent institution. I'd suggest that you look back at either the greeks or the late 18th century as the most likely periods that such a mythical personage lived in.

    And I'd suggest that you read our policy. Putting words into the mouth of an author is likely to get you booted by a moderator so hard that the ring of freshness you taste in your mouth will be anal in origin... (and not from the usual male bovine origin).

    BTW: welcome to the blog :twisted: You may find it a bit less "polite" than you are used to... ]

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    Potentia | 30-10
  • Tea Party takes on “President Obola”
    OK, so this happened: Theatricality is one of the best ways to shake the sleepwalking public awake. One brave liberty advocate made a bold statement when he donned a Hazmat suit and an Obama mask, and took to the president’s...
    Polity | 30-10
  • CTU welcomes forestry review recommendations
    The CTU is welcoming the today's release of the independent forestry safety review panel findings. "These recommendations must be implemented to ensure that everything possible is done to make forestry safer." CTU President, Helen Kelly said.  Photo:  ...
    CTU | 30-10
  • Herald vs Hosking-in-Herald on teabreaks
    The New Zealand Herald editorial today is distinctly unimpressed with the government’s decision to remove mandated tea breaks for workers: It is a pity that almost the first legislative act of the Government's new term is an act abolishing mandatory...
    Polity | 30-10
  • Forest Safety report first step in making our forests safe to work in
    Our forests are a very dangerous place to work. Between 2008 and 2013 there have been 32 fatalities and more than a thousand serious harm incidents in this industry. The Council of Trade Unions and First union have been doing...
    frogblog | 30-10
  • Ghost Dancing?
    Ghost Dancing circa 1890: With the buffalo effectively exterminated, the material basis for the Native American cultures of the Great Plains was destroyed. The Ghost Dance, it was believed, would reconstitute the basis for an independent indigenous existence. Has the...
    Bowalley Road | 30-10
  • I have seen one future, and it is bleak
    . . Way back in March, 2012,  I wrote this story regarding a march to support striking workers at Ports of Auckland. It appears there was some prescience about some of my observations at the time… . | | 18...
    Frankly Speaking | 30-10
  • WINZ: Bureaucratic Befuddlement and Confustication
    Yeah, I know. Confusticate isn’t a word, unless you’re quoting Urban Dictionary. Definition: This word is the coalescing of the English words “confuse” and “complicate”. It refers to anything of, or relating to the process of being both confused and...
    On the Left | 30-10
  • The idiot
    Here’s why this Steffan Browning/Ebola/Homeopathy thing is a really big deal for the Green Party. (a) Historically they’ve been stereotyped by their opponents as a bunch of nutters (b) The main focus of the party for the past five years –...
    DimPost | 30-10
  • The idiot
    Here’s why this Steffan Browning/Ebola/Homeopathy thing is a really big deal for the Green Party. (a) Historically they’ve been stereotyped by their opponents as a bunch of nutters (b) The main focus of the party for the past five years –...
    DimPost | 30-10
  • Climate change and New Zealand cities
    Environmentalists sometimes have an uneasy relationship with cities. Because they concentrate a lot of people and economic activity in relatively small places, they also concentrate a lot of negative environmental effects. All that concrete, all that energy being consumed, the...
    Transport Blog | 30-10
  • Got a mystery? Just ask John!
    Tuesday, November 24, 2009John Key has learned the identity of the entertainer guilty of an indecency charge through the grapevine of people circumventing the suppression order....
    Pundit | 30-10
  • Shameful attack on all workers
    The Government has passed the Employment Relations Amendment Act slashing the rights of all Kiwi workers. “These changes are shameful. New Zealand now has some of the worst employment protections in the OECD....
    CTU | 30-10
  • Blocked
    It is safe to say before the election last month I was fairly prolific in the blogosphere as we headed to an election. Was it because there was a glimmer of hope for we on this side of the coin?...
    My Thinks | 30-10
  • Blend with the Bruntletts Group Ride
    While Vancourerites Chris and Melissa Bruntlett are here for their Auckland Conversation talk, Generation Zero, Frocks on Bikes and TransportBlog have organised a slow, family friendly ride around the city centre. The map is below. The ride is designed to be self-directed so...
    Transport Blog | 30-10
  • New research quantifies what’s causing sea level to rise
    There have been a number of studies that have come out recently on ocean warming and sea-level rise. Collectively, they are helping scientists coalesce around an emerging understanding of climate change and its impact on the Earth. Most recently, a...
    Skeptical Science | 30-10
  • Rawshark – Is she Maori or Pakeha?
    Cameron Slater blamed someone for being behind the hacking of his emails and passing them on to Nicky Hager. And then he named someone he thought was Rawshark. John Key says someone told him who Rawshark is but he ain’t telling. @B3nRaching3r is...
    Te Putatara | 30-10
  • Employment law: it’s toasted
    In an early episode of Mad Men, when the company’s going for the Lucky Strike account, sleazebag antihero Don Draper asks the client exactly how cigarettes are made. They talk through the process, mentioning the tobacco is toasted – and...
    On the Left | 30-10
  • Owners of the wind
    Thirty-odd years ago in the Kingdom of Denmark lived some brave people who disliked nuclear power and loved renewable energy. Determined to keep their country clean and safe, they began building their own wind turbines. Today, thanks to these passionate...
    Greenpeace NZ blog | 30-10
  • Te Wakaputanga – What we did not learn at school
    This week saw the 179th anniversary of the signing of Te Wakaputanga, the Declaration of Independence of the United Tribes of Niu Tireni. Most of us did not learn about this fundamentally critical document at school, we barely learned about...
    frogblog | 30-10
  • NZ goes backwards on gender equality
    It is no coincidence that in the same week New Zealand is singled out for going backwards on child poverty under National,  we’ve also dropped in global rankings for gender equality. In one year New Zealand has dropped from 7th...
    frogblog | 30-10
  • TPPA Bulletin #58
    NATIONAL DAY OF ACTION 8 NOVEMBER 2014 Auckland, Hamilton, Raglan, Tauranga, Rotorua, Gisborne, New Plymouth, Napier, Palmerston North, Levin,Wellington, Nelson, Christchurch, Timaru, Dunedin,Invercargill. REGIONAL UPDATES Auckland (1:00 pm at Aotea Square): speakers include Robyn Malcolm (Actors Equity), Bunny McDiarmid (Greenpeace), Dayle Takitimu...
    NZ – Not for sale | 30-10
  • Seabed mining: drums in the deep
    Out on the Chatham Rise, the ridge jutting into the waters off Christchurch and extending out beyond the Chathams, Chatham Rock Phosphate has a mining permit and is now seeking EPA approval for its project to mine phosphate for fertiliser,...
    Pundit | 30-10
  • Contact’s big solar buy-back drop bad news for Kiwis with solar
    The Green Party are calling for a law change to establish an independent umpire to set fair and reasonable buy-back rates after Contact Energy announced, from today, new small scale solar and wind generators will receive 50 percent less for...
    Greens | 01-11
  • John Key’s asset sales outed by his own Minister
    National needs to come clean about the motivations behind selling state houses after Paula Bennett's asset sale admission, said the Green Party today.On Saturday, Paula Bennett, the Minister for Social Housing admitted, in a televised interview, that the sale of...
    Greens | 01-11
  • James Shaw speaks on the four Bills formerly known as the Accounting Infras...
    The assurance industry is a critical component of our economic framework. The idea that there is a trusted independent watchdog of the public interest underpins investor confidence and ensures financial probity on behalf of our country's leading institutions. New Zealand...
    Greens | 31-10
  • ANZ needs to look after its workers after another super profit
    The ANZ bank needs to acknowledge the super profits it makes are coming at the expense of its workers, the Green Party said today.Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited (ANZ) 2014 full year results show a lift in performance...
    Greens | 31-10
  • James Shaw’s maiden speech
    Tena Koe, Mr Speaker. I would like to take this opportunity to speak a little of the past, the present and the future. The privilege to serve in this Parliament was given to me by all those who gave their...
    Greens | 31-10
  • Feed the kids members bill
    Education is the best route out of poverty. But hungry kids can't learn and are left trapped in the poverty cycle. Let's break that cycle lunchbox by lunchbox. We can feed the country's hungry kids, if we work together.I have...
    Greens | 31-10
  • Feed the kids members bill
    Education is the best route out of poverty. But hungry kids can't learn and are left trapped in the poverty cycle. Let's break that cycle lunchbox by lunchbox. We can feed the country's hungry kids, if we work together.I have...
    Greens | 31-10
  • National’s “Auckland housing boom” a fizzer
    Falling Auckland consent numbers show the Government’s housing policy is going backwards contrary to wild claims by Building and Housing Minister Nick Smith that we are on the cusp of a massive construction boom, says Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford. ...
    Labour | 31-10
  • Job losses major blow to Bay community
    Job losses at Wattie’s Hastings plant will hit families and the community hard, Hawke’s Bay-based Labour MP Stuart Nash and MP for Ikaroa-Rawhiti Meka Whaitiri say. “I know a number of the Wattie’s staff and these job losses will be...
    Labour | 31-10
  • Local job losses major blow to Bay community
    Job losses at Wattie’s Hastings plant will hit families and the community hard, Hawke’s Bay-based Labour MP Stuart Nash and MP for Ikaroa-Rawhiti Meka Whaitiri say. “I know a number of the Wattie’s staff and these job losses will be...
    Labour | 31-10
  • Zero tolerance for forestry accidents a must
    The Government must adopt a zero tolerance approach to workplace accidents in the forestry sector to stop people being killed, Labour’s Forestry spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “It is time for the Government and the forestry sector to put an end...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Return to less holidays on the cards?
    John Key needs to lay his cards on the table regarding the Government’s intentions around holiday pay and annual leave entitlements, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “A day after National pushed through laws that take away the legal...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Forest Safety report first step in making our forests safe to work in
    Our forests are a very dangerous place to work. Between 2008 and 2013 there have been 32 fatalities and more than a thousand serious harm incidents in this industry. The Council of Trade Unions and First union have been doing...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Catherine Delahunty Speaks on the Employment Relations Amendment Bill
    Kia ora, Mr Assistant Speaker. He mihi nui ki te Whare Paremata. Welcome to the glorious 19th century, dressed up in the not-so-new flexibility-speak. At the final moment of this bill, let us drop the charade. The Government has a...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Ruataniwha Feds refuse to present a balanced view
    A bid to sell the Ruataniwha water project to Hawkes Bay farmers has turned in to an incredibly one sided affair, says Labours spokesperson on Water Meka Whaitiri.  “It’s being promoted as ‘Ruataniwha it’s now or never’ and it promises...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Worker’s rights dealt severe blow with Bill’s passing
    The passing of the Employment Relations Amendment Bill is another blow to workers' rights in New Zealand, the Green Party said today.This afternoon, National's Employment Relations Amendment Bill passed with the support of Act and United Future."This bill will force...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Barriers to reporting sex crimes must go
    Both the Government and police need to take action to ensure that, in future, sexual abuse victims know they will be taken seriously, Labour’s Associate Police spokesperson Kelvin Davis says. “The young women involved in the Roast Busters case, and...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Te Wakaputanga – What we did not learn at school
    This week saw the 179th anniversary of the signing of Te Wakaputanga, the Declaration of Independence of the United Tribes of Niu Tireni. Most of us did not learn about this fundamentally critical document at school, we barely learned about...
    Greens | 30-10
  • NZ goes backwards on gender equality
    It is no coincidence that in the same week New Zealand is singled out for going backwards on child poverty under National,  we’ve also dropped in global rankings for gender equality. In one year New Zealand has dropped from 7th...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Kevin Hague questions the Minister of Health on management of Katherine Ric...
    Is he satisfied that all conflicts of interest that arose by the head of Food and Grocery Council Katherine Rich being a member of the Health Promotion Agency were managed in accordance with the provisions of the Crown Entities Act...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Bennett parks numbers on social housing
    Social Housing Minister Paula Bennett admitted today that well over 1000 families have been subsidised through the accommodation supplement to stay in the Ranui campground, somewhere she has previously described as not the right place for children to be growing...
    Labour | 30-10
  • 50,000 sign petition against anti-worker law
    More than 50,000 Kiwis have signed Labour’s petition against the Government’s scrapping of tea break entitlements, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “That’s the equivalent of five people signing our petition every minute for a week. It shows the...
    Labour | 30-10
  • Address in Reply Debate – Dr Kennedy Graham on UN Security Council- 2...
    In the Speech from the Throne last week the Prime Minister identified the usual domestic goals for his Government. I counted 17. They are not my subject today. I wish instead to focus on matters beyond our shores. In the...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Climate change harming ocean health
    New Zealand is responsible for one of the largest areas of sea in the world – an area 14 times the size of our land area. The National Government is promising new marine protected areas legislation with a discussion document...
    Greens | 30-10
  • Key misled public over Jason Ede
    Information contained in a new chapter of the book Key: Portrait of a Prime Minister, that Jason Ede stopped working for the National Party on the night the book Dirty Politics was released, shows Mr Key and senior ministers hid...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Greenpeace report highlights better path for NZ agriculture
    A Greenpeace International report highlights a better way forward for New Zealand agriculture than the GE and chemical mutation technologies supported by Federated Farmers, and the National Government through its research funding packages, the Green Party said today. "This report...
    Greens | 29-10
  • BNZ post record profits while leaving savers vulnerable
    A small part of the $850 million record profit posted by the Bank of New Zealand (BNZ) today needs to be set aside to protect savers' deposits in the future, said Green Party Co-leader Dr Russel Norman today.Dr Norman was...
    Greens | 29-10
  • RBNZ U-turn shows monetary settings were wrong
    The Reserve Bank's U-turn on interest rates today shows monetary policy settings were wrong and New Zealanders have suffered unnecessarily through the loss of jobs and having to pay higher interest rates, the Green Party said today.Reserve Bank Governor Graeme...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Ports must take responsibility for shameful death toll
    Port companies must step up and take responsibility for a shameful toll of seven deaths and 133 serious accidents in the past three years, Labour MP Iain Lees-Galloway says. The frightening figures – released by the Rail, Maritime and Transport...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Please help me get my Feed the Kids Bill to Select Committee
    Last week I took over the Feed the Kids Bill that Hone Harawira had introduced to Parliament. If passed, my Bill will provide government-funded breakfast and lunch in all decile 1 and 2 schools. Hungry kids can’t learn and are...
    Greens | 29-10
  • TVNZ Outsourcing Pasifika and Maori Programmes
    I’ve always been a big fan of our state broadcaster and I’ve particularly liked their range of current events programmes. But after Friday’s announcement that TVNZ will be sacking up to 40 staff by contracting out the Pacific and Maori...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Labour urges iwi leaders to meet with National
    Labour’s Māori Caucus has called on iwi leaders and national Māori organisations to seek urgent meetings with the National Government to directly express their concerns about employment law changes which will harm Māori workers. In an open letter sent today...
    Labour | 29-10
  • ACC’s reputation needs fix, not glitz
    Restoring public trust and confidence in ACC will take a lot more than a new communications strategy or social media blitz, says Labour’s ACC spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway. “Under National, ACC has come to be perceived as insensitive, difficult to deal...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Lessons to be learned from police investigation
    The outcome of the so-called Roast Busters case should not put victims off reporting sexual crimes, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “This case has been mishandled from the start. Within days of police initially saying no charges had...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Anti-worker legislation is anti-Pacifica
    The Minister for Pacific Peoples, Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga, will go down in history as being part of a Government that harmed his own people through anti-worker legislation, says Labour’s Pacific Island Affairs spokesperson Su’a William Sio.  “Pacific people are among...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Five-year tax holiday for overseas tax dodgers
    National has just gifted a five-year tax holiday for foreign companies dodging their tax payments, says Revenue spokesperson David Clark. “Todd McClay has pretended he is doing something about overseas companies dodging their tax duties by joining an international initiative...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Traffic Jam Tax must be given the red light
    Auckland Council’s proposed Traffic Jam Tax could cost some households thousands of dollars a year just to use roads they had already paid for with their taxes and must be rejected, says Labour’s transport and Auckland Issues spokesperson Phil Twyford....
    Labour | 29-10
  • National has chance to show leadership on limos
    The National Party has the opportunity to show leadership by transitioning our vehicle fleet towards renewable electricity when a new contract to supply Government limousines for VIPs goes to tender next month, the Green Party said today. "This is a...
    Greens | 29-10
  • The Māori Party can’t have it both ways over labour laws
    The Māori Party has to fess up over its voting record on the Employment Relations Amendment Bill, says Labour’s Māori Caucus.  “It’s simply not good enough to oppose the bill at the same time  as they helped speed up its progress through...
    Labour | 29-10
  • Equal pay and the aged care sector
    Today the High Court upheld the historic ruling by the Employment Court that our Equal Pay Act could be used to consider work of equal value cases; the government has been telling the UN and ILO that it could for...
    Greens | 29-10
  • Court case perfect opportunity for Government to improve gender pay gap
    If the Government wants to halt New Zealand’s slump in international rankings on the gender pay gap it should act on the court finding that women deserve equal wages, Labour’s Women’s Affairs spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “The World Economic Forum’s...
    Labour | 28-10
  • All Auckland transport options should be considered
    All options for meeting Auckland's transport needs should be considered, including reprioritising the transport budget away from wasteful spending on motorways, the Green Party said today.Auckland mayor Len Brown is today releasing a transport report by the Independent Advisory Board,...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Another report highlights Govt failure on child poverty
    An international report measuring the impact of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) on child poverty rates, showing children in New Zealand have done worse than children in other countries, is further proof the Government needs to urgently take additional steps...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Address and Reply Debate Part 55: Inequality and Disability
    I rise on behalf of the Green Party to talk about inequality and disability.The recent census showed that nearly one in four New Zealanders lives with a disability—up from one in five in the previous census. These figures include some...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Child poverty: No more wake-up calls
    A new report which shows the National Government has made no inroads whatsoever into child poverty should do more than just set alarm bells ringing, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “UNICEF’s  latest Innocenti Report Card highlights the fact...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Eugenie Sage speaks in the 2014 Address in Reply Debate
    I congratulate you, Assistant Speaker Mallard, as Assistant Speaker and look forward to your knowledge, your fairness, and your light touch in being a referee of proceedings in this House. I congratulate also the other Assistant Speaker, Lindsay Tisch; the...
    Greens | 28-10
  • James Shaw’s Maiden Speech
    Tena Koe, Mr Speaker. I would like to take this opportunity to speak a little of the past, the present and the future. The privilege to serve in this Parliament was given to me by all those who gave their...
    Greens | 28-10
  • Govt airs real views on public broadcasting
    An admission by the Government that it is happy to experiment with Pacific and Maori audiences shows just how weak its vision for public broadcasting in New Zealand is, Labour’s Broadcasting spokesperson Kris Faafoi says. “National today admitted it doesn’t...
    Labour | 28-10
  • Does Judith Collins have a get out of jail card?
    Former justice minister Judith Collins appears to have been gifted a get out of jail free card based on the Prime Minister’s answers in Parliament today, Labour’s Acting Deputy Leader Annette King says. “Judith Collins claimed in an Official Information...
    Labour | 28-10
  • The Final Fifth: The Last Great Task for Progressive New Zealand.
    MOST OF NEW ZEALAND’S social problems are concentrated among those living at the margins of what is otherwise a relatively wealthy society. Recently released international data on child poverty has exposed an acutely stressed social strata encompassing roughly 20 percent...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • Myth Busting Rape Boasters
    In just one week a case that galvanised a nation into discussing rape culture is now being reframed as mischievous teen hi-jinx. One year ago the Roast Busters case came to the attention of the media and the public. This...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • Workers rights weakened by new laws – fightback needed
    The government’s changes to the employment laws are designed to weaken workers bargaining power – at both the individual and collective level.   30-day rule The old law required an employer with a collective agreement in place to employ new...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Simon Buckingham – Where are Labour Candidates on disability?
    For the few people who know me (hello Mum), I am proudly New Zealand’s first Autistic Spectrum Lawyer, as well as being the very bottom Candidate on the Labour Party List. (64 out of 64). Being honoured like this is...
    The Daily Blog | 31-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Blockade the Budget
    The ‘Independent’ Police Conduct Authority’s report into the policing of student protests in 2012 is a whitewash The report released by the Independent Police Conduct Authority into the policing of student protests in 2012 is a whitewash riddled with inaccuracies....
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • When National claim new anti worker laws provide ‘flexibility’ they mea...
    And so it comes to pass. The first law National ram through as part of their victory march are new anti worker laws they pretend will generate ‘flexibility’. The new law denigrate the unions ability to protect workers and provide...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • City Transport: A Taxing Matter
    This week the prospect of paying tolls on Auckland motorways became a hot topic. (See Mathew Dearnaley:Motorway tolling could hit some hard, NZ Herald, 30 Oct 2014.) As we might expect, the kneejerk response has been quite negative. But, as with...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Open Letter to Amy Adams: Please Reopen The Review Into Sexual Violence Cou...
    Ms Amy Adams, Justice and Courts Minister, Right now in this country it seems that although rape is illegal, it is not being prevented by the agents who uphold the law. It almost feels like rape is only illegal on paper,...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: Does ‘No-Surprises’ Also Apply To TVNZ News?
    When you stand back and look at NZ media outlets, most of them have at least one or two people who attempt to hold the government to account: John Campbell on TV3, Guyon Espiner and others at Radio NZ, David...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Things That Make You Go Hmmmmmmm
    Every so often in politics, a public figure comes out with something so absurd and so outlandish … that it really does just make you go “Hmmmmmmmmmm”. We’re accustomed to this from certain quarters – by mid point through the...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Poverty & inequality don’t need protest marches – they need a riot:...
    The global level of inequality continues to skyrocket… Number of billionaires doubled since financial crisis The number of billionaires has doubled since the start of the financial crisis, according to a major new report from anti-poverty campaigners. According to Oxfam,...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • If Key knows who Rawshark is…
    I’m sorry, what? John Key ‘given Rawshark’s name’The Prime Minister believes he knows who hacked Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater’s computer and produced the source material for Nicky Hager’s Dirty Politics, according to a new edition of a recently published...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Child Poverty stats in NZ
    Child Poverty stats in NZ...
    The Daily Blog | 30-10
  • Crimes Act + Police Investigation = WTF
    Just to frame the farce that is the Roastbuster’s investigation and conclusion – here are the parts of the Crime Act http://www.legislation.govt.nz/act/public/1961/0043/latest/whole.html#DLM329057  the Roastbusters are proven to have violated – that the police (and some suspects!) themselves acknowledge occurred: Crimes...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Publishing Journalists’ Home Addresses Is A Tactic Of The Right, Not The ...
    I think I’m starting to get rather annoyed with the conduct of some pro-MANA people over this ongoing Parliamentary Services crew complement issue. Yes, we get that there are legitimate issues to be raised with how some political reporters in...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Aucklanders caught between a tarseal-addicted government and a weak mayor
    Len Brown’s proposal for motorway tolls to reduce congestion and provide funding for better public transport is a weak response to a critical issue. The $12 billion dollar shortfall on transport funding he talks about is mainly for projected new...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • A Very Weird Story: Deconstructing Darren Aronofsky’s Noah.
    NOAH is a curious movie. Conceived as a biblical epic, it’s target audience was originally the millions of Americans who regard the Bible as God’s inerrant word. With the sin-filled works of Hollywood forbidden to these true-believers, Christian movie-makers have developed...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • You Can Get Away With Rape In New Zealand
    Jessie Hume with last years petition against rape     The police have sent a strong message today.  In fact they’ve been sending a strong message for a while; a message that our government supports. “You can literally get away...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Roast Buster case – no charges. In the immortal words of NWA…
    Roast Busters case: No prosecutions Police are to make an announcement this afternoon on Operation Clover, the investigation into the “Roast Busters” allegations. The Herald understands the victim has been told that the alleged offenders will not be prosecuted due...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Key’s flag change distraction to cost $26million!
    No. Way. Bid to change NZ flag to cost millions The cost of holding two referendums and consulting on a change of flag has been estimated to be just under $26 million. Look. We all appreciate that the sleepy hobbits...
    The Daily Blog | 29-10
  • Why NZ Herald’s Labour Party crocodile tears are so audacious
    The front page the NZ Herald would use if they thought they could get away with it No one can take the recent columns by NZ Herald seriously… John Armstrong: Shadow lingers on National John Roughan: Labour’s leadership vote matters...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • The beginning of the end of Cameron Slater?
    Slater postings on man bizarre, court told A businessman has changed his appearance and had to install extra security at his home after Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater posted his business and personal documents online, he says. Mr Slater has...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • We are a milk power republic and Fonterra our unelected senate
    Wow. Just wow… Deputy mayor says he’ll be sacked South Taranaki deputy mayor Alex Ballantyne says he expects to be sacked because he has spoken out about the impact gasses coming from dumped Fonterra dairy products have had on his...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: “…But *actually* this is about ethics in political-game jo...
    Yesterday, a piece of mine on the recent revelations about Hone Harawira employing several gentlemen either accused or convicted of sex offences was published on The Daily Blog. Predictably, given the fierce loyalty which Hone inspires in his party faithful and...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Privilege cheque
    There was no race problem in my childhood. Living in central Wellington I was well-insulated from what was going on not so far away. This was the 60s and 70s, where the teachers enjoyed free love in the staff room...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • A brief word on Key’s claim that it will be raining carnage
    Isis will ‘rain carnage on the world’ – John Key Left unchecked Isis would “rain carnage on the world”, Prime Minister John Key says, but he has yet to make a decision on whether New Zealand troops will join a...
    The Daily Blog | 28-10
  • Meanwhile…
    ...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • How does Andrew Little win Labour Leadership and unify the caucus?
    Audrey Young’s excellent column on how the Caucus vote  is shaping up shows how Andrew Little becomes the next leader of the Labour Party. She identifies the factions as the following… Andrew Little 6: Andrew Little, David Cunliffe, Iain Lees Galloway,...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Joe Trinder – Right of response to Curwen
    You have asked that Hone Harawira deserves to explain what happened, how would he explain when his next door neighbour is an alleged sex offender. What explanation can Hone offer he wasn’t involved, Hone had no idea this offending was...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • MEDIA WATCH: That Hella-Weird Feeling When You Defend Tova O’Brien
    Oh dear. Yesterday morning I blogged that Hone deserved a chance to explain what exactly had happened as applies his office’s Parliamentary Services crew complement – and, importantly, that we deserve to be able to judge him on the strength of...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Canadian Green MP warns against harsh anti-terror measures
    Canada’s Green Party has provided a welcome counterpoint to Prime Minister Harper’s call for tougher anti-terrorism laws in the wake of a soldier outside the Canadian Parliament. On October 22, while she was still locked in her parliamentary office, Green...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • When is an asset sale not an asset sale? When it robs from the poor and ste...
    National have turned state housing on its head. At no time during the 2014 election did the Key Government even hint that they were going to privatise 30% of the Housing NZ stock of state homes. Not once. Key even...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part To...
    . . Continued from: Housing; broken promises, families in cars, and ideological idiocy (Part Rua) . Bill English comes clean on National’s intentions for HNZ privatisation . On 14 October, in a report on The Daily Blog, I wrote, In...
    The Daily Blog | 27-10
  • The Questions Have Been Asked – They Deserve An Answer
    A few days ago, allegations that had been percolating for some time about Hone Harawira employing three either accused or convicted sex offenders on his Parliamentary pay-roll came to light. (one imprisoned before working for MANA; one who found himself convicted and...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • I have seen one future, and it is bleak
    . . Back in  March 2012, I wrote this story regarding a march to support striking workers at Ports of Auckland. It appears there was some prescience about some of my observations at the time… . | | 18 March...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • US air strike war Key wants us in has killed a civilian a day so far
      The US air strike war that John Key wants us to join has killed a civilian a day so far. From the Washington Post... The United States launched its first airstrikes on militants in Syria on Sept. 23, and has continued...
    The Daily Blog | 26-10
  • The instant Jihad syndrome
    My favourite new term is ‘self-radicalised’ – it suggests the reasons for terrorism are totally divorced from the actions of the West. This need to suddenly ramp up terror laws because of lone wolf, self-radicalised Jihadists seems convenient and counter-productive....
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • We have nothing to fear from Ebola but fear itself
    I suspect most Americans perceive Ebola like this   I can’t work out if the fear being spread within the media about Ebola is deliberate or just ignorance. Yes Ebola is a terrible plague that kills a large percentage of...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Anjum Rahman – “Meritocracy? I wish.”
    I’d like to start by linking to a post I had published at another site in support of Nanaia Mahuta for the Labour Party leadership election.  She has a reasonable chance, given that she already has the endorsement of Te...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Chocolate milk shortage and creepy Santa? Let’s talk about real news
    Child poverty is still a scarily serious problem in this country and house prices are soaring through the roof to the point where it is simply impossible for the average New Zealander to buy a home. There is also little...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • It’s time to celebrate Kiwi schools and teachers
    Some would have you believe that New Zealand’s schools are in a state of collapse, that your children are not being educated well and that things are going to hell in a hand basket.  That there is no innovation, no...
    The Daily Blog | 25-10
  • Ideological Blitzkrieg – Privatization of state housing, more charter sch...
    Pundits in pundit land will tell you that this Government is boring, that Key is the great pragmatist and that it is his ability to create elegant solutions that keeps him the firm favourite in many Kiwi eyes. This ability...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • Hegemony rules but resistance is fertile
    The Prime Minister is a puppet. Not just our current Prime Minister, but given the forces of multinational globalisation, the role of any head of state, is less as independent actor, and more as a puppet of international trends and...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • An open Letter to Sir Bob Jones: demanding a ‘liveable wage’ is not “...
    How out of touch with reality is Sir Bob Jones? You know, that white dude who invested in privatised SOEs after the selling off of our assets in the eighties and made a ludicrous and disgusting amount of money and is...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • My insecurity about the Security Council
    As I write this (on 24 October) it is international UN Day. Of course, you all knew that already, right? Well, the day celebrates the entry into force of the UN Charter in 1945. With the ratification of this founding...
    The Daily Blog | 24-10
  • GUEST BLOG: Catherine Delahunty – Back in That House
    Parliament opened this week and I still find it a very odd place. Most of the people are reasonably courteous and friendly, but the rituals are archaic and the rules around issues like the swearing in oath are oppressive and...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Marae Investigates No More
    TVNZ yesterday announced the closure of their Māori and Pacific programmes department. That means they’ve chosen to stop making Fresh, Tagata Pasifika, Waka Huia and Marae Investigates to let independent producers get their hands on these lucrative contracts. This is...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • BLOGWATCH: An Un-Civil War in Labour, eh?
    Earlier today, my attention was directed to an entry that’s just recently appeared on the Slightly Left of Centre blog. It purports to contain the ‘inside word’ from a highly placed NZF source – which is funny, because I’m pretty sure...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Santanomics 101
    Santanomics could mean a number of things. It could be the study and practice of giving. Or it could mean the study and practice of rampant end-of-year commercialism. However, for me today it is the economics of erectingAuckland’s giant Santa...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • SkyCity boss misleads public over workers lost shifts
    SkyCity CEO Nigel Morrison has defended the employment practices at his company in an “Opinion” piece entitled “Human Capital key to corporate success” in the NZ Herald on Thursday. A number of his claims are misleading, contain only partial truths...
    The Daily Blog | 23-10
  • Patrick Gower interviews Social Housing Minister
    Bennett says National could sell off “thousands” of state houses but Housing NZ will still be the “dominant force” in providing social housing in NZ....
    Scoop politics | 01-11
  • The Nation: Lisa Owen interviews Mike Moore & Chris Liddell
    Lisa Owen interviews NZ Ambassador to the US Mike Moore and corporate high-flyer Chris Liddell about the US midterm elections....
    Scoop politics | 01-11
  • David Parker event – the future of work, Sun 2 Nov
    Labour leadership candidate David Parker, an experienced lawyer and businessman as well as a former senior government cabinet minister in the Helen Clark Government, will join three prominent New Zealanders in a panel discussion on Sunday to address...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Roast Busters: Turn Indignation into Action
    People raged about the Roast Buster case. The indignation was justified – it was horrible. “Where were their parents!?” Fair question. I am sure the Roast Busters’ parents and the victims’ parents all wish they had been more proactive in...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Stats NZ only have themselves to blame for postponement
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says Statistics NZ only have themselves to blame for the indefinite postponement of the release of the Food Price Index: November 2014....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • NZ Diversity Survey – benchmarking workplace diversity
    AUT University’s New Zealand Work Research Institute (NZWRI) has released a report on diversity in New Zealand workplaces....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Māori Language (Te Reo Māori) Bill
    Tutehounuku Korako, Chair of the Māori Affairs Committee, is inviting further public submissions on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Friday, 5 December 2014....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • ERA amendments a mixed bag
    The Employment Relations Amendment Act has the potential to put vulnerable workers in a more precarious position, says Equal Opportunities Commissioner, Dr Jackie Blue. However, the commissioner says the right for all to request flexible work hours is...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Sensible Sentencing calls for appeal of judicial activivism
    The Sensible Sentencing Trust is appalled that Justice Jill Mallon has today refused to apply the Life without Parole (LWOP) provisions of the Three Strikes law as enacted by Parliament....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Global Rally against ISIS – for Kobanê – for Humanity, Nov 1
    The New Zealand Kurdish Community will march in solidarity with Kurdistan as part of the “GLOBAL RALLY AGAINST ISIS – FOR KOBANÊ – FOR HUMANITY” on 1 November 2014, 2pm....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Does ‘No-Surprises’ Also Apply To TVNZ News?
    When you stand back and look at NZ media outlets, most of them have at least one or two people who attempt to hold the government to account: John Campbell on TV3, Guyon Espiner and others at Radio NZ, David...
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Safer roads are better for everyone
    Recent pedestrian versus vehicle incidents highlight the real issues being addressed by delegates as the 2Walk and Cycle conference concludes....
    Scoop politics | 31-10
  • Law change creates more flexible labour market
    The Employment Relations Amendment Act, passed yesterday, will bring new flexibility to the labour market and will reduce the ability of unions to organise and to recruit....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Bumper ANZ profits mean no excuse for insecure hours
    A big rise in profits at New Zealand's largest bank needs to be reflected in a better pay offer and more security around hours of work, the bank workers’ union said today....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Count down to lowered alcohol limit
    With just a month to go until a new lower alcohol limit for adult drivers comes into effect, Police and road safety agencies are reminding drivers of the impending change....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • WorkSafe Supports Forestry Review Findings
    WorkSafe NZ says the Independent Forestry Safety Review has clearly identified the problems facing an industry in which ten workers were killed last year. “The Review’s analysis matches our own view and leaves no doubt about the need for comprehensive,...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CTU welcomes forestry review recommendations
    The CTU is welcoming the today's release of the independent forestry safety review panel findings. "These recommendations must be implemented to ensure that everything possible is done to make forestry safer." CTU President, Helen Kelly said....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Activists will confront animal abusers
    Today animal rights activists will confront a group of wealth advisers who want to build the biggest egg factory-farm in New Zealand....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Turia: Women’s Refuge Conference 2014
    This is a milestone moment in my life. This will be my last official address as Co-leader of the Maori Party. On Saturday night at our Hui-a-Tau, I will be standing down from that role and enabling a new co-leader,...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Rodeo Code of Welfare ‘Sick Joke’
    Animal advocacy organisation SAFE says the revised Code of Welfare for Rodeos just released is nothing but a sick joke. “Rodeo animals are goaded, tormented and forced to endure needless suffering and gross mistreatment, all for the sake of so-called...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Conservative Party applauds binding referenda on flag
    The Conservative Party are congratulating the Government on the decision to hold two binding referendums to decide the fate of New Zealand’s flag – and believes it will pave the way for binding referenda to form part of New Zealand...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Walk the Talk – Opposing violence against women
    Soroptimist International of Auckland have organised a walk on 22 November from Silo Park at the Wynyard Quarter through the Viaduct and back to Silo Park, to show their opposition to violence against women. This event hopes to raise awareness...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Recommendations on the Design of Pecuniary Penalties
    The Law Commission has reviewed the use of pecuniary penalties as a regulatory tool. Pecuniary penalties are financial penalties that policymakers are increasingly opting to use in place of criminal sanctions in order to punish and deter misconduct in...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Every worker will be affected by employment law changes
    Every worker will feel the effects of the government’s new employment laws and should join a union if they want to maintain and increase their wages and conditions, says New Zealand’s largest private sector union, the EPMU....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Shameful attack on all workers
    The Government has passed the Employment Relations Amendment Act slashing the rights of all Kiwi workers. “These changes are shameful. New Zealand now has some of the worst employment protections in the OECD. It is embarrassing that a country which...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Unnecessary law changes more to do with ideology
    The government’s employment law changes are simply ideological and are at odds with its approach in the related areas of health and safety and immigration law, FIRST Union said tonight....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CTU Runanga calls on iwi leaders
    Maori workers are calling on iwi leaders to speak out against the employment law changes expected to go through today. “Iwi leaders have previously spoken out when workers in Aotearoa have been under attack, we believe they should do so...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Educating children not the best solution to alcohol harm
    Alcohol Healthwatch says we need to look beyond educating children and young people to address deeply embedded attitudes and behaviours concerning alcohol....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • New code of welfare for rodeos released
    New standards to strengthen the animal welfare requirements for rodeos have been issued today by the Minister for Primary Industries, Nathan Guy....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • IPCA report riddle with inaccuracies, say students
    A report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority into the policing of student protests in 2012 is riddled with inaccuracies, say students who laid the original complaint with the IPCA....
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • CT v The Queen – indecency convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Rameka v The Queen – murder convictions quashed
    This summary is provided to assist in the understanding of the Court’s judgment. It does not comprise part of the reasons for that judgment. The full judgment with reasons is the only authoritative document. The full text of the judgment...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Auckland Council Out of Control
    Responding to the NZ Herald article that some Auckland households will face a rates rise of up to 9.6 per cent next year, Taxpayers’ Union Executive Director Jordan Williams says: “Len Brown’s pledge to cap rates rises at 2.5 per...
    Scoop politics | 30-10
  • Stats NZ staff escalate action with ‘no more meetings’ rule
    Statistics NZ staff have voted to escalate their ongoing industrial action in an effort to get Stats NZ back to the bargaining table with a reasonable offer. The staff, who are members of the Public Service Association (PSA), have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Rape Crisis calls for changes to criminal justice system
    Wellington Rape Crisis has added its voice to the public outcry following the announcement that there will be no charges in the teen rape gang case. Butterworth says the decision not to lay charges will not have been a surprise...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Police action justified in Blockade the Budget demonstration
    Police actions in dealing with a demonstration in Central Auckland known as Blockade the Budget on 1 June 2012 were justified and appropriate, an Independent Police Conduct Authority report released today found....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • NZDF Joins with Australia to Commemorate WWI Centenary
    A contingent of New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel will join their Australian counterparts at Australia’s first major commemoration of the First World War centenary in Albany, Western Australia this weekend....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Reserve Bank should reduce interest rate
    “The Reserve Bank should be reducing its policy interest rate, the OCR”, says CTU Economist Bill Rosenberg in response to the Bank’s announcement today that it is not increasing it....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • 2015 Stout Fellow will write about Māori & Criminal Justice
    Kim Workman, founder and advocate for the Robson Hanan Trust, which administers the Rethinking Crime and Punishment and Justspeak initiatives, has been awarded the 2015 John David Stout Fellowship at Victoria University....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • What John Key thought about ‘dirty politics’
    On September 20, John Key swept to victory to become one of New Zealand’s most successful and popular Prime Ministers. Rocked by scandal, the 2014 election campaign was one of the most brutal – and riveting – in recent history....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Trade Deal Threatens Farmers and Food Businesses
    The secret Trans Pacific Partnership negotiations are a direct threat to food businesses and farmers, and a moratorium on the release of GE crops must be enshrined in law before the TPP is signed....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • CTU announces election of new Secretary
    The contested election for the position of CTU Secretary has been won by Sam Huggard. Sam officially takes office on Monday 1 December 2014. Sam has worked in the union movement and brings a wealth of experience and a commitment...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kim Workman awarded 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship
    The Victoria University of Wellington 2015 J.D. Stout Fellowship, funded by the Stout Trust, has been awarded to justice reform advocate Kim Workman. Mr Workman (Ngati Kahungungu ki Wairarapa, Rangitaane) is well known for his work on criminal justice,...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • TPPA causing concern
    Concern over the secretive Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) negotiations is being expressed in two public meetings over the next week; one at a presentation on 5th November by former councillor Robin Gwynn to the Napier City Council, the...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Kiwis rally to demand justice for ‘Roast Buster’ survivors
    Over 1,500 kiwis have rallied to demand justice after the announcement of the NZ Police decision not to lay charges in the ‘Roast Busters’ saga....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • New employment law will hurt the most vulnerable NZers
    The Public Service Association (PSA) says changes to the Employment Relations Act, expected to be passed in Parliament tonight, will hurt vulnerable workers and their families more than anyone....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Consultation to close on proposed place names
    The New Zealand Geographic Board (NZGB) Ngā Pou Taunaha o Aotearoa today advised that only one month remains before public consultation closes for 18 name proposals for geographic features and places around Te Ika ā Māui (the North Island)....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Operation Clover – Statement from Police Commissioner
    I have taken a close interest in this investigation and I am confident police have conducted a thorough and professional enquiry in what has been a challenging and complex case. The Operation Clover team has ensured that victims have been...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Better policy would have protected children from recession
    Child Poverty Action Group says an international report released by UNICEF today shows good policy can protect and improve child well-being, even during a recession....
    Scoop politics | 29-10
  • Outcome of Operation Clover investigation
    Police have completed a multi-agency investigation, Operation Clover, into the activities of a group calling themselves “The Roast Busters”. The 12 month enquiry focused on incidents involving allegations of sexual offending against a number of girls...
    Scoop politics | 29-10
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