Tuesday, 22 September 2009


Dear All

I've written an anti-fluoride protest song (lyrics and tune) with a really strong marching chorus and some pithy verses. Although I used to be able to play the guitar and sing folk songs in my youth, this, I feel, is beyond me now. I'd like to have the song arranged and recorded/videoed and put on a blog for free distribution so that all anti-fluoride groups worldwide could take it up as their anthem.

Do any of you have any contacts in the music world who would be willing to take on this project? I can put it on a sound file a capella for onward transmission to any interested musician.

With best wishes


West Midlands Against Fluoridation (website due to go live 4th October)

Water Fluoridation: The propaganda and public relations game.

At the onset of selling fluoride to the public as protective measure against tooth decay in the late 1940s, the companies involved brought in the mastermind and father of modern public relations, Edward Bernays. Alcoa Aluminium needed to get rid of toxic fluoride waste, and like any other giant corporation that had a big public relations and marketing problem – they called in Bernays to solve it.

Bernays was to perform some PR alchemy – turn rat poison into a publicly accepted cavity fighter. He succeeded with successfully selling fluoride to the public in toothpaste for his old client Proctor and Gamble.
Edward Bernays wasn’t just any backslapping public relations huckster running around glad-handing people at parties or someone pumping out fliers at the water company; he was THE public relations advisor to presidents, the US government, and multinational corporations. Among his many monumental achievements of PR hucksterism, he orchestrated and implemented a successful US Government hate campaign against Germans during the First World War. It was designed to incite a reticent American public to enter into the European fray.

However, ironically, Hitler's propaganda chief, Joseph Goebbels, was one of Bernays biggest fans and used the same precepts from his 1923 book “Crystallizing Public Opinion” to orchestrate the hate campaign against the German Jews which resulted in the holocaust – “The final solution.” Curiously, Bernays’ approach to getting rid of toxic waste was ‘The solution to pollution is dilution in the public water supply.’
Bernays moulded public opinion and manipulated the masses by the use of visual symbols and words that have and will continue to impact every person in the world well into the future. His basic rules are still applied to advertising and public relations today.

To Bernays, people were “The masses” and referred to them as a “Herd” to, more or less, drive like dairy cattle from pasture to pasture, told what to eat and drink, and even what clothes to wear and cars to drive. He saw himself as the leader of an elite group of people (“The invisible government”) working behind the scenes to create compliant social order out of a chaotic democracy. The base and aggressive animal instincts of the population were to be satiated by consumerism and thus domesticated like a compliant herd of dairy cattle.
“We are governed, our minds molded, our tastes formed, our ideas suggested, largely by men we have never heard of. This is a logical result of the way in which our democratic society is organized. Vast numbers of human beings must cooperate in this manner if they are to live together as a smoothly functioning society.” (Propaganda” – 1928, Bernays)
When I first got involved with the water fluoridation issue, I saw his name and knew that winning the fight was about public relations and propaganda. All the science and other altruistic arguments were simply distractions – ‘dog and pony shows’ staged to give the masses the illusion of participating in the democratic process, when in fact the decision to fluoridate the drinking water of a nation was predetermined by Bernays and his clients.

In 1947, fluoridation of the Nation’s drinking was government policy. The mechanisms, sales pitch, and bureaucracy to impose the new policy were in place well before they began to pitch drinking water fluoridation to the masses in the early 1950s. I would imagine a strategy to marginalise and discredit dissidents was also devised well in advance. It would have been fairly simple strategy based on Freudian concept of mans need to be part of the herd; Marginalise a dissident and their primal instinct to belong would bring them back into compliance with the group consciousness.
“Because man is by nature gregarious he feels himself to be member of a herd, even when he is alone in his room with the curtains drawn. His mind retains the patterns which have been stamped on it by the group influences.” (Propaganda).

The marginalisation and isolation tactic is still used on scientists who speak out against fluoridation. If a scientist speaks out against fluoride, they are discredited as a scientist. If one does a little research, there is a long list of scientists whose careers were ended by speaking out against water fluoridation. Essentially, they were made examples to keep the scientific community corralled like a herd of domesticated cattle. For the most part, the tactic has successfully worked.
The next thing I realised was that of all the successful PR campaigns Bernays masterminded for governments and corporations, he never actually got all of the “herd/masses” to accept water fluoridation although a majority would reluctantly acquiesce. Bernays pulled every trick out of his books on hucksterism to get everyone to accept fluoridation, and sixty-years-on, the heated battle still ensues, and today, on several continents.

People like to call it a debate about fluoride, but it’s not – fluoridation is basically a bitter battle of wills cloaked in a translucent veil of civility. Scientists, activists, and doctors argue back and forth about health issues, and at the end, they walk away politely ‘agreeing to disagree.’
Nothing much has changed in the basic rhetoric or tactics over the past sixty years. For every study that says fluoride is bad, the pros pump out ten studies trashing the study and the scientist, and the people who oppose fluoridation are still labelled as ‘kooks and crackpots.’
Sixty years later, it’s more than evident that Bernays’ tried and true PR strategies didn’t work. There were too many dissidents among the bovine ‘masses’ – So, I asked myself, “Why?”

In revisiting his 1928 ‘bible’ of public relations, “Propaganda,” it became evident that he violated one of his cardinal principles:
“The public has its own standards and demands and habits.
You may modify them, but you dare not run counter to them.”
His strategy to sell fluoridation was contrary to what people are led to believe about democracy and their freedom of choice – the very foundations upon which Bernays based his PR concepts – ‘give the masses the illusion that they have a choice.’ Strip away all the superficial reasons and arguments people offer for opposing fluoridation and what remains is person’s need to feel that he/she has a choice. Violate that somewhat delusional belief, and you’re in trouble.

Marketing fluoride in toothpaste was successful because people felt as if they had a choice, but put fluoride into their drinking water, and you’re imposing your will upon the individual – the person’s perceived right to make a choice is taken away which elicits either a conscious or a subconscious resentment and incites a reaction.

Bernays made the fatal mistake of assuming that people below his self-perceived intellectual status were nothing more than a mindless herd relying on people like him to make decisions for them. Forcing something on someone runs contrary to that fundamental belief in ‘sense of self,’ and the reality that all humans are individuals and prefer to believe that have some control over their lives.
However, the governmental policy of fluoridating drinking water sends a demeaning message: ‘The public is too stupid to be educated about basic dental hygiene, so we have to take draconian measures to reduce tooth decay.’

In essence, fluoridating the drinking is running counter to the individual’s standards and belief that they have a choice and the ability to think for themselves because the politicians are perceived to be brutally forcing something down their throat without their consent.
However, from a psychological standpoint, fluoridation of the drinking water is much more than a simple public health program to governments. Symbolically, it’s more about dictatorial power and the subconscious and symbolic imposition of authority.
For all intents and purposes, fluoridation is the symbolic imposition of ultimate authority and dominance by politicians – ‘shoving something down my throat. – forcing me to do something against my will.’ To most individuals that is abhorrent behaviour and completely unacceptable.
While some government officials may well delude themselves into thinking that they have the best interest of the citizens at heart, in fact, they’re saying to the individual, ‘You will do what I say, and I don’t care what you think – I’m in control of your life. Take your medicine and shut up.’

The truth of the matter is that when drinking water fluoridation comes into the frame, battle lines are drawn. Beyond all the superficial, altruistic reasons someone will give for their opposition to fluoridation, the bottom-line is that it is a personal issue, and most people don’t like to have anything force-fed to them - it’s an affront to and violation of their personal dignity. While the government has the power to win, they never really win because imposing one’s will on individuals only generates seething resentment and a need to retaliate in some form.
In reality, if the government was actually concerned about tooth decay, using Bernays tried and true methods of propagandising the public with multimedia public education would be more cost effective and ultimately, much more successful than attempting to ‘make inoculate the herd.’ About 99.7% of all the fluoride added to the water goes down the drain – not in people’s bodies.
Personally, I think Bernays’ involvement in water fluoridation was another of his grand societal experiments in manipulating public opinion, as he published “The Engineering of Public Consent” the same year he became involved with marketing fluoride. Persuading the entire population to accept drinking water tainted with rat poison would be his ultimate public relations triumph – something he could brag about in another book.

He knew it was rat poison, but being a self-aggrandising megalomaniac, Bernays actually thought he could persuade everyone to believe that it was a magic elixir and they needed it in their water. However, he forgot that ‘masses/herd’ don’t like to be forced to do anything, and fluoridating drinking water is just that.
As the old adage goes, “You can take a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink.”


Monday, 21 September 2009



Back in March we warned that the lawyers were about to get involved in the fluoridation controversy. Now they are here, and the Government's duplicity is under scrutiny, with a Judicial Review of the law on public consultation.

When Southampton resident Geraldine Milner was awarded State legal aid to challenge the autocratic rejection of public opinion against fluoridation in the City of Southampton, pro-fluoride advocates in the UK were brought up sharply against reality. The first legal challenge of any aspect of water fluoridation to come before a Judge since Lord Jauncy effectively banished fluoridation from Scotland twenty six years ago has shocked the pro-fluoride Establishment to its foundations.

Fluoride pushers across the country are worried. The plan to fluoridate the English North-West has stopped dead in its tracks. Even in long-fluoridated areas of the country the Water Companies are nervously waiting to see what the Judge has to say about the Government's undercover attempt to remove the hazards of uncertain public opinion from public health policy-making.

It will be several months yet before we get the verdict, but behind the scenes there are signs that the Department of Health may be preparing a face-saving exit strategy. Only a few days ago the North West Strategic Health Authority announced that it is concerned that the costs of the proposed northern scheme are likely to be rather more than it had expected - £200 million. Ouch!

But quite why this is regarded as such a shocking revelation is difficult to understand We informed the NWSHA that it would cost precisely that amount two years ago, and we got it directly from the Water Company!

Our commentary on the issues that will form the basis of the Judicial Review are published here today - you will be surprised at just what has been going on behind the scenes!

Inadmissible evidence.

The impending Judicial Review will examine whether Parliament's wish that public agreement to water fluoridation must be the deciding factor was ignored when the Consultation Regulations were drawn up.

But the evidence given to Parliament during the fluoridation debates was itself scientifically illiterate, and may have improperly influenced the Members and the provision of the secondary legislation on consultation.

So should the Judicial Review now also examine the 'cogency' of the evidence given to Parliament and used repeatedly by the Health Authority, and the Health sector's irrational rejection of reliable scientific evidence of the serious medical risks of water fluoridation?

Doug Cross, 19th September 2009