Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Salon: A hidden epidemic is poisoning America. The toxins are in the air we breathe and the water we drink, in the walls of our homes and the furniture within them. We can't escape it in our cars. It's in cities and suburbs. It afflicts rich and poor, young and old. And there's a reason why you've never read about it in the newspaper or seen a report on the nightly news: it has no name -- and no antidote. The culprit behind this silent killer is lead. And vinyl. And formaldehyde. And asbestos. And Bisphenol A. And polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). And thousands more innovations brought to us by the industries that once promised "better living through chemistry," but instead produced a toxic stew that has made every American a guinea pig and has turned the United States into one grand unnatural experiment.

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Instead of leveling with the public, the lead industry through its trade group, the Lead Industries Association, began a six-decade-long campaign to cover up its product's dire effects. It challenged doctors who reported lead-poisoned children to health departments, distracted the public through advertisements that claimed lead was "safe" to use, and fought regulation of the industry by local government, all in the service of profiting from putting a poison in paint, gasoline, plumbing fixtures, and even toys, baseballs, and fishing gear.

As Joe Camel would be for tobacco, so the little Dutch Boy of the National Lead Company became an iconic marketing tool for Dutch Boy Lead Paint, priming Americans to invite a dangerous product into their children's playrooms, nurseries, and lives. The company also launched a huge advertising campaign that linked lead to health, rather than danger. It even produced coloring books for children, encouraging them to paint their rooms and furniture using lead-based paint.

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Hmmm...the article doesn't even mention MTBE...I wonder why?

#1 | Posted by MUSTANG at 2014-02-26 08:00 AM | Reply | Flag:

Wow. Time to panic. Life expectancy must be at an all time low.

#2 | Posted by Sully at 2014-02-26 10:16 AM | Reply | Flag: | Funny: 1

Is this from The Onion.

If anyone thinks American cities are "poisonous" they need to get out more and explore.

What a crappy thread.

#3 | Posted by CrisisStills at 2014-02-26 11:31 AM | Reply | Flag:

These are the consequences of industrial capitalism. It kills.

#4 | Posted by nullifidian at 2014-02-26 12:32 PM | Reply | Flag:

Death is the consequence of life.

#5 | Posted by Harry_Powell at 2014-02-26 01:18 PM | Reply | Flag:

That's just the beginning. They're in your food and in every medication you take.

#6 | Posted by Ray at 2014-02-26 03:20 PM | Reply | Flag:

And all these toxic products are in every other country in the world. The whole world is toxic and we will all die (someday).

Where do I sign up to join the team to colonize Mars?

#7 | Posted by path at 2014-02-26 03:35 PM | Reply | Flag:

Working in a real estate office, I deal with lead-based paint information forms all the time. I never could figure out why it wasn't cheaper in the long run to just teach our kids not to eat things coming off the walls.

#8 | Posted by hawk at 2014-02-26 04:10 PM | Reply | Flag:

@ #8

Exposure also occurs from dust. You can't really tell kids to stop breathing or stop eating with their hands.

#9 | Posted by censored at 2014-02-26 05:29 PM | Reply | Flag:

Hmmm...the article doesn't even mention MTBE...I wonder why?

#1 | Posted by MUSTANG

Wouldn't that be covered under "And thousands more innovations brought to us by the industries that once promised..."?

#10 | Posted by Whatsleft at 2014-02-26 05:34 PM | Reply | Flag:

Where do I sign up to join the team to colonize Mars?

#7 | Posted by path

You really think jumping on a rocket and launching yourself on a yearlong journey in tin can in the vacuum and radiation of space towards Mars is safer than staying on Earth?

#11 | Posted by donnerboy at 2014-02-26 05:38 PM | Reply | Flag:

I'm not disputing the article, but are these chemicals/fabrics/materials not used in other first world countries? Honest question.

#12 | Posted by JOE at 2014-02-26 05:43 PM | Reply | Flag:

#11: My comment was obviously satire. Maybe you don't get SNL either so don't watch it.

#13 | Posted by path at 2014-02-26 05:55 PM | Reply | Flag:

"And all these toxic products are in every other country in the world. "

The diseases created by industrial civilization have already spread to most of the world. Isn't globalized capitalism great?

#14 | Posted by nullifidian at 2014-02-26 06:03 PM | Reply | Flag:

#12

You're right. It's a little ridicules to assume it's only an American problem.

#15 | Posted by Whatsleft at 2014-02-26 06:03 PM | Reply | Flag:

#11: My comment was obviously satire.

Ahhh

Good whew! Hard to read snark over the interwebs sometimes.

I mean it's ok by me if you go to Mars and all.

You will probably die sooner than the rest of us but you will have such a great adventure!

#16 | Posted by donnerboy at 2014-02-26 06:16 PM | Reply | Flag:

Between 1930 and 2000 global production of man-made chemicals increased from 1 million to 400 million tonnes annually.

This toxic soup has been created in just the last 100 years and has embedded its poisonous fingerprints into the biological make-up of all living things on the planet

…The US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, in a regular survey, finds certain industrial "chemicals of concern" in the blood of 90 per cent to 100 per cent of the American population. The Environmental Working Group, a US non-government organisation, in independent tests reported the finding of 414 industrial toxins in 186 people ranging in age from newborns to grandparents. In a further disturbing piece of research it found 212 substances, including dioxins, flame retardants and known carcinogens, in the blood of newborn babies, who had been contaminated while in the womb. Tests from China to America to Europe have discovered industrial toxins in the breast milk of nursing mothers.
...

Humanity produces more than 83,000 different chemicals, a third of which are known to cause or suspected of causing cancer, mutations and birth defects and most of which are toxic. The global output of chemicals is about 30 million tonnes a year, and the United Nations Environment Programme says the industry will be worth $6 trillion by 2020, and triple in size by 2050.

Read more: www.canberratimes.com.au

#17 | Posted by nullifidian at 2014-02-26 06:30 PM | Reply | Flag:

#16: Downerboy...

I can see you still don't get it, maybe after you mature some more (snark intended)

#18 | Posted by path at 2014-02-26 07:56 PM | Reply | Flag:

Action has been taken on most of these. One cannot know ahead of time what things will do. Granted we have made new substances and extracted ores that have caused problems. However, the evidence is rather overwhelming that personal choices are the cause of many,if not Most of our health problems and not due to wicked humans. Alcohol excess, calorie excess, smoking, dipping and chewing, unsafe sex, shooting up, recreational drugs-cocaine, meth, heroin, opiate prescription drugs, distracted driving. Personal responsibility is our style. If anyone has a problem, it is someone else's fault.

#19 | Posted by Donald at 2014-02-26 09:13 PM | Reply | Flag:

"the evidence is rather overwhelming that personal choices are the cause of many,if not Most of our health problems and not due to wicked humans."

Not wicked humans. Industrial civilization.

#20 | Posted by nullifidian at 2014-02-26 09:48 PM | Reply | Flag:

The lawyers' incomes must be in trouble----time to manufacture some other lefty perceived evils/dangers.

#21 | Posted by matsop at 2014-02-27 10:45 AM | Reply | Flag:

Matsop,

I don't think it is manufacturing perceived evils they are there and they are bad. The deal is what can be done on one hand you get righties who say do nothing free market and all and then you get the lefties who say ban it all lets go move into caves.

Look at rise of cancers and autoimmune disorders. Better detection is some explanation but can't account for the totality of the rise.

Personally I know it's out there I try and minimize exposure, with the full knowledge that I will never eliminate exposure. I don't let it fret me because I have better things to do with life than spend it worrying about what I can not change. As someone else pointed out we are living longer than ever so even if we are poisoning ourselves we are doing better overall. Or we are doing a pretty good job of coming up with poisons to cure the poisons.

#22 | Posted by TaoWarrior at 2014-02-27 11:09 AM | Reply | Flag:

#22 | Posted by TaoWarrior at 2014-02-27 11:09 AM | Reply

Tao, since the changes in the early 40s people are living longer then ever. Since then, we've had the introduction of all kinds of new chemicals and other materials and as yet life spans have increased over time. Sure, there are threats from some of these substances but a lot of them have been put behind us---lead and asbestos are 2 of the examples. My dad just died at the age of 97----having served in the south pacific for 4 years during WW II was more of a threat then any of these substances will ever be.

#23 | Posted by matsop at 2014-02-27 11:26 AM | Reply | Flag:

Look at rise of cancers and autoimmune disorders. Better detection is some explanation but can't account for the totality of the rise.

#22 | Posted by TaoWarrior at 2014-02-27 11:09 AM | Reply

Some of the rise also could be explained by the fact that we're living ever longer.

#24 | Posted by matsop at 2014-02-27 11:28 AM | Reply | Flag:

Damn..................... the sky is falling again.

#25 | Posted by Sniper at 2014-02-27 11:43 AM | Reply | Flag:

#23 & 24

True I did not factor in longer life gving these things longer to crop up. Like I said I don't let it fret me and I certainly don't want to go back to living in a cave eating raw meat either. I think though that simply saying hey we are living longer so how bad can this crap be is not a valid answer either. There is a middle ground which I think we do an okay, not great but okay, job at. Keep the worst out but accept that some better living through chemistry will cause some complications.

#26 | Posted by TaoWarrior at 2014-02-27 12:29 PM | Reply | Flag:

Me, my mother, and brother are all afflicted with celiac disease. That wheat and gluten allergy that is leading to the explosion of "gluten free" food you're hearing about.

Why did some people all of a sudden become allergic to wheat, a staple of our diets for thousands of years?

Now it looks like it may be PESTICIDE. Something created to increase yields and profit. I hope those chemists and industrial farmers are enjoying the extra cash they're earning by making people sick. Glad we could serve as your guinea pigs, but some sort of warning or compensation would've been nice.

#27 | Posted by SpeakSoftly at 2014-02-27 01:26 PM | Reply | Flag:

#26 | Posted by TaoWarrior at 2014-02-27 12:29 PM | Reply

True; the way I look at it is that you always do your research to find those substances that do have a significant deleterious threat to homo sapiens and you make sure they're not used or used at levels that aren't a threat. We've done that with certain substances in the past. I don't get all caught up in a lot of this since I believe genetics still play the major role in what we are and what we will have inflicted on us.

#28 | Posted by matsop at 2014-02-27 01:29 PM | Reply | Flag:

Why did some people all of a sudden become allergic to wheat, a staple of our diets for thousands of years?

#27 | POSTED BY SPEAKSOFTLY

It wasn't all of a sudden. It's been around for thousands of years. It's been around since man started cultivating grains.

Humans first started to cultivate grains in the Neolithic period (beginning about 9500 BCE) in the Fertile Crescent in Western Asia, and it is likely that coeliac disease did not occur before this time. Aretaeus of Cappadocia, living in the second century in the same area, recorded a malabsorptive syndrome with chronic diarrhoea. His "Cœliac Affection" (coeliac from Greek κοιλιακός koiliakos, "abdominal") gained the attention of Western medicine when Francis Adams presented a translation of Aretaeus's work at the Sydenham Society in 1856
en.wikipedia.org

Educate yourself

#29 | Posted by goatman at 2014-02-27 01:34 PM | Reply | Flag:

It's "the most popular herbicide on the planet," widely used on crops like corn and soy genetically engineered to be "Roundup Ready," and sprayed on weeds in lawns across the US. But in the peer-reviewed study published last Thursday in the journal Entropy, authors Anthony Samsel, an independent scientist and consultant, and Stephanie Seneff, a senior research scientist at MIT, crush the industry's claims that the herbicide glyphosate is non-toxic and as safe as aspirin.

Looking at the impacts of glyphosate on gut bacteria, Samsel and Seneff found that the herbicide "enhances the damaging effects of other food borne chemical residues and environmental toxins," and is a "textbook example" of "the disruption of homeostasis by environmental toxins."

www.commondreams.org

One of 83,000. In the USA these chemicals must be proven unsafe to be taken off the market. The took 60 years for leaded paint and gasoline with millions of retarded children just another avoided cost for Dupont, GM & Standard Oil.

#30 | Posted by nutcase at 2014-02-27 07:28 PM | Reply | Flag:

ho·me·o·sta·sis: the tendency of a system, especially the physiological system of higher animals, to maintain internal stability, owing to the coordinated response of its parts to any situation or stimulus that would tend to disturb its normal condition or function.

#31 | Posted by nutcase at 2014-02-27 07:35 PM | Reply | Flag:

These are the consequences of industrial capitalism. It kills.

#4 | Posted by nullifidian

Go with Dennis Rodman to North Korea and witness a country you might consider advanced then.

#32 | Posted by Diablo at 2014-02-28 02:51 AM | Reply | Flag:

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