The Jekyll and Hyde of Fluoride

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Several years ago, I changed my toothpaste. I did this because I’d worked out, through experimentation, that SLS (sodium lauryl sulphate), a foaming agent found in many bathroom and kitchen products, gave me clammy hands and mouth ulcers. Not surprisingly, I didn’t want it in my mouth any more. I found a different toothpaste that was SLS-free and began using it exclusively.

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One side-effect of using this new toothpaste was that I was no longer brushing with fluoride, as the new toothpaste I’ve been using has no SLS or fluoride in its ingredients. I did wonder, at the time, if this might cause problems with my teeth, as fluoride is continually recommended to help avoid tooth decay. As this website article states, it's the 'super-hero of cavity fighting'. In the end, I thought it would be an interesting experiment to see how I got on without it. The years have gone and my teeth are still fine. I have no need for fillings, I have no gum problems and although my teeth aren’t perfect (they’re naturally a very pale yellow and a bit wonky), everything is fine inside my mouth. It would seem that I don't need this 'super-hero'.

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Flight of the Conchords questions

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As the New Zealand band ‘The Flight of the Conchords' will be touring the UK this month, I’ve put together a list of questions to ask the two guys. Hopefully, these questions will pass through the spirit-ether and appear to them in dreams. They’ll then answer the questions with their subconscious minds and I’ll receive their replies while day-dreaming about how to levitate, or possibly in the form of lyrics to weird ear-worm songs of unknown origin that I start humming to myself. For those who don't know these guys, check out this video:

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Freezing Britain and methane bombs

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This week, we are having unseasonable cold weather in the UK. Normally, at this time of year (end of February), temperatures here would be climbing into double figures as the sun rises higher in the sky. Instead, we are gripped with freezing day-time conditions, a sub-zero easterly wind and a fair amount of snow.

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Some readers might conclude that such cold weather shows that fears of global warming are unfounded, or perhaps highly exaggerated. Tragically, this latest weather phenomenon, a mass-movement of cold air south, from the Arctic, is an indication that the opposite is true.

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The dark possibilities of voice-command devices

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The most recent fashionable item to own in Western households is a digital cylinder that understand your requests and carries them out, known as a vince-command device. Amazon’s Echo was the trailblazer in this field but Apple have caught up with their Alexa device. These devices, with their ability to listen to users, understand their speech, process the requests, reply and carry out the digital tasks, are being viewed as a boon to a busy household. Unfortunately, no one seems to be talking about the big potential problems that are inherent in these devices. Read More...

Mysterious excavated passage in the Great Pyramid antechamber

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While browsing Youtube, I found this very interesting video about the Great Pyramid, created by 'Ancient Architects'. Ancient Architects is creating a lot of videos about ancient mysteries and their videos are invariably accessible, interesting and enjoyable. This video includes a short explanation of the theory of Jean Pierre Houdin, who believes that there is a secret access door to the King's Chamber, leading to hidden chambers, who's location may have been recently detected by muon scattering.

The special reason I'm mentioning this particular video in my blog is that it reports that there is now an excavated passage in the Great Pyramid's antechamber. I had no idea that this access passage existed. The video's author reports that the passage was recently excavated, then sealed off from the public by a locked, iron-grille door. Read More...

Robert Sepehr documentaries on Youtube

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For the last year or so, Robert Sepehr has been posting interesting documentaries on Youtube. They cover a range of subjects, from anthropology to modern history. As many of their topics overlap with articles I've posted on this website, I thought it would be good to list four videos he's made that I've found interesting and thought-provoking. Unlike much that is posted on youtube, Robert Sepehr's videos are usually balanced and intelligent and don't veer off into wild speculation. They're also relatively free of ads, which makes them easier to watch too! I don't agree with everything he posts but I do think he's doing a good job. Here's the videos he's made that I've enjoyed, along with a few personal comments:

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Edward Teller, climate change and 1959

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There's a very interesting article in today's Guardian newspaper by Benjamin Franta. It concerns a symposium entitled 'Energy and Man' that took place in New York City in 1959, organised by the American Petroleum Industry as part of a celebration of 100 years of the American Petroleum industry. To quote from the article, 'Over 300 government officials, economists, historians, scientists, and industry executives were present'. Its guest of honour was Robert Dunlop but there was another famous face taking part, the brilliant physicist Edward Teller.

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Edward Teller was a very right-wing man, almost as right-wing as his fellow ex-Hungarian, the genius scientist John Von Neumann, who supposedly became the inspiration for the character of 'Dr Strangelove' in Stanley Kubrick's famous movie. Both were firm advocates of a massive increase in arms spending and a deep-seated fear and hostility towards the Soviet Union. Von Neumann famously admitted to a congressional committee that he would carpet-bomb the entire Soviet nation at the first opportunity. Read More...

Keep them ill, keep them scared

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The United States of America, along with the United Kingdom and France, are very keen on Ancient Greek and Roman architecture. Their capitals are filled with columned temples, obelisks, triumphal arches and other visual motifs from those ancient, Mediterranean civilisations. These countries' also like to talk about how they've inherited a key process in collective decision-making, known as democracy.

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Democracy was developed by the Athenian city-state, and others, as a way to collectively decide what to do. Athenians would discuss openly their views on key subjects and then take a vote. This process is now used worldwide to decide national matters. This all sounds great but in truth, how much is modern, Western democracy really like Classical, Athenian democracy? Read More...