Category: Blog

Sometimes words are better.

The Hijacking of Fluorine 18.998, Part Three

In the last two blog posts (here and here), I told you about the history of fluoridation of water in the United States and other parts of the world. I told you how a dentist traveled out west to Colorado and, through observation and laboratory study, helped determine that adding fluoride to drinking water prevented tooth decay. Of course, the…

Aside

In case you haven’t heard, public health authorities in the United States caught on to a weird kind of lung damage syndrome that is strongly associated with vaping (aka “electronic cigarettes”). The syndrome manifests itself as lung damage that is acute and severe, leaving young people with lungs that work at the capacity seen in octagenarians.

There are hundreds of cases and some deaths reported, and we are all working on understanding this phenomenon further and doing something about it.

Speaking of doing something about it, it seems that the federal government is mulling a ban on electronic cigarettes. Some states and local governments have already done it, and it’s making people stock up on their supplies before it happens. So that is likely where this is going… While parents want to protect their kids from damaging their lungs permanently, and while sentiment on smoking is definitely not in its favor, we are probably going to have a nationwide ban on vaping products that are flavored, at the very least.

Personally, I am not in favor of a ban because bans create black markets for these products, making them harder to regulate and assure their safety. In my opinion, it is better to tax them into oblivion, allowing only those with the means to pay through the nose to pay for a safer product. We’ll see how it goes.

The Hijacking of Fluorine 18.998, Part Two

NOTE: This is the second of a three-part series on fluoride in drinking water and a recent study about it. You can read part 1 here. You can read part 3 here. In the last blog post, I told you all about how fluoride has been added to potable water systems in the United States and elsewhere based on the…

The Hijacking of Fluorine 18.998, Part One

NOTE: This is the first of a three-part series on fluoride in drinking water and a recent study about it. You can read part 2 here. You can read part 3 here. There is a cultural controversy dating back several decades that is very similar to the anti-vaccine controversy that we are dealing with today. Back in the early 1900s,…

The countries you’ll live in

I’m often amazed and somewhat troubled by the number of people who claim loudly and proudly that the United States of America is the best country in the world. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t dismiss their claim immediately… I just have a hard time believing this trope from someone who has not stepped outside of the country. Or, if…

The Parent Ren, Part X: It’s Harder Than It Looks

Some people will tell you that it’s easy to be a parent. They’re lying. It’s not easy to be a responsible parent, especially if you’re also trying to balance a career. You have to learn to let go of some things and embrace other things… Things like the unpredictable nature of a little person who is learning how to adapt to the world around them. It’s a big responsibility, but it comes with great reward, if you’re up to it.

So I’ve Been a Little Busy

One of the jokes that my wife and I made as I got the new job is that I wouldn’t have time to get in trouble. Because, apparently, I tend to get in trouble when I’m not busy enough. I think it’s more like trouble finds me, and then I pay attention to it when I’m not busy. The times…

Big Changes

Change can be hard sometimes, unless you’re used to it. Other times, you forget that there was change in your life all the time because you became complacent to the things around you. Change is not bad… Change is a welcomed, uh, change.

Sample Sizes and Statistical Significance

Some dude said I didn’t know what I was talking about because, in his world, a small sample size with a statistical significance only gets more statistically significant if the sample size increases. He’s also an antivaxxer, so…

The Safe Places We’ll Give You

When I was a child, there was only one place where I fell asleep at night without any problem. Even at my own home, I had a hard time falling asleep. There were a lot of noises coming in from the outside, or some sort of family drama would seep in and take my sleep. But at my paternal grandparents’…