The Greensparty is attempting to undermine public confidence in the fluoridation of water despite strong endorsements for it by scientists, doctors, public health experts, dentists and the late Mrs Marsh. Political insiders say it’s a cynical ploy to keep sweet with north coast NSW nuts who oppose fluoride and vaccinations and vote Greensparty.
The Greensparty has joined a dwindling band of conspiracy theorists who are opposed to the fluoridation of water by demanding a public inquiry into it.
Their notorious NSW branch, dominated by its de facto leader Senator Lee Rhiannon, best-known for her Soviet-training and vehement opposition to live-music venues, has demanded an expensive taxpayer-funded inquiry into fluoride in water for the purpose of undermining public confidence in the strongly medically-endorsed programme and indulging some of the Greensparty’s loyal constituents in northern parts of the state.
The background to the conspiracy theory about the fluoridation of water was essentially that it was thought to be (usually by the extreme right and fundamentalist Christian groups) a means of controlling the population or for some other unspecified sinister purpose. It is a conspiracy theory equated with claims vaccinations cause autism (also a popular notion with some in north coast NSW), the moon landing was faked, that climate change is a hoax and that Elvis is still alive and hanging out in the Bermuda Triangle feasting on deep-fried peanut butter and jelly sandwiches (and KFC).
Without need for a public inquiry, putting fluoride in water has drastically reduced tooth decay. Experts consider it to be one of the great medical achievements of the last century, up there with recognising tobacco as a cause of cancer. Wikipedia notes the widespread credible support for fluoridation:
The American Dental Association calls water fluoridation “unquestionably one of the safest and most beneficial, cost-effective public health measures for preventing, controlling, and in some cases reversing, tooth decay.”
The World Health Organization says fluoridation is an effective way to prevent tooth decay in poor communities. “In some developed countries, the health and economic benefits of fluoridation may be small, but particularly important in deprived areas, where water fluoridation may be a key factor in reducing inequalities in dental health.”
However Greensparty MP Dr John Kaye, a pampered member of the NSW upper house and its Health spokesperson, is speaking out on behalf of his wacky constituents in northern NSW who are convinced fluoride is a plot against them.
“It would be wrong to ignore these people,” he told Guardian Australia, itself owned by a huge Greensparty donor Graeme Wood, the founder of website wotif who gave the party $1.7M in the largest recorded political donation in Australian history prior to the party’s MPs pushing hard for one his property development plays.
It would, of course, be wrong to indulge these people with yet another inquiry, paid for by the people of NSW from funds used to keep hospitals, schools and national parks running, that won’t convince them and will be used by some to further promote the hysteria against fluoride.
Kaye told the Guardian “…the community on the north coast is concerned about mass fluoridation and we owe it to them to review the evidence again to be sure if it’s the right way to go,” he said.
Most NSW municipalities have fluoride in the water although there is an active resistance to it from hippies in north coast NSW whose drug use possibly leads them to paranoid delusion.
Among many in their party, one Lismore Greensparty honcho and local councillor is leading the fight against fluoride.
Lismore councillor Vanessa Elkins launching a Change.org petition to fight the introduction of fluoride, which will be added to the region’s water supply within the next 18 months.
“We had a fabulous dental care program in schools but that was scrapped when the NSW Health Department started lobbying for fluoride,” she said.
“It shifted the cost of dental care onto water users, meaning that we spend $200,000 on getting a chemical from China for our water that we could use for dentists in a clinic that currently has a two-month waiting list.
“There’s been quite a lot of concerning research about the impact of fluoride on skeletons. The state government made a decision in 1957 to put fluoride into water and a lot of research has taken place since then. We should have a review of that research.”
The weirdness on the issue is not restricted to Nimbin Greensparty hippies either. The Victorian franchise of the Greensparty kowtows to fluoride loons as well, as they did back in 2007.
The Ballarat Greensparty’s website chronicles their policy in favour of demanding a community-wide referendum on fluoride wherever it is used:
Greens MLC Colleen Hartland said “Our policy supports the right of communities to determine the introduction of fluoride into local water supplies. I put the emphasis on ‘determine’ rather than on being consulted with or being given information. They should have the right to determine whether fluoride goes into their supply, and that is a very important point,”
Hartland equates fluoride to toxins and pollution:
“The Greens want disclosure on potentially toxic issues. We want the EPA to disclose toxic sites and we want full labelling of genetically engineered products. There’s no difference in the fluoride issue.”
She continued that she wouldn’t even accept a majority decision in the event of a local plebiscite:
“And finally, I’d need some convincing that it’s OK to fluoridate water after a plebiscite if 49% of the population believes (rightly or wrongly) that fluoride is detrimental to their health.”