essay: mobile phones

 

 

Disconnect                                                                                                                              Dec 2011

 

Hi, I’ve just finished reading a very disturbing book that my daughter Eve gave to me.  It’s titled “Disconnect”, by Dr Devra Davis, a top American public health scientist and author.  If you are not moved by the few extracts here, the book itself is of course much more compelling and convincing.  Essentially it’s a well-written account of a huge and systematic industry coverup (v similar to that by the tobacco industry) over 5 decades of the very clear links between consistent mobile phone use and brain cancer, and some other diseases.  Massive industry resources have gone into discrediting scientists and studies that clearly showed the links, flooding the authorities with fraudulent studies by their own scientists, and using the well worn “it needs more research” line to divert attention and to delay the day when those mighty profits dry up.  A few extracted titbits:

  • in 2000 Israelis were the world’s heaviest      mobile phone users; now their rate of head and brain cancers in areas      around the ear has tripled in people under 20
  • a recent study has shown that those who      start using mobiles regularly as teenagers have 4x the expected rate of      brain tumours 10 years later
  • there is a very large amount of anecdotal      evidence (obviously not controlled scientific trials) connecting mobile      phone use to brain cancer
  • auditory nerve tumours are 3x more common      in people using a mobile phone for more than a decade
  • since 2003 rates of parotid salivary gland      tumours (beside the ear) have tripled, with 1 in 4 occurring in people      under 20 – previously unheard of
  • all reputable studies over 40 years have      shown DNA damage by radio wave frequencies used by mobiles
  • there is very good evidence that      radiowaves from mobiles cause male infertility – we carry them in our      pockets
  • all modern cell phones are sold with a      small print warning buried in the packaging or the manual not to put it      closer to your head than one inch
  • Lloyds of London will not insure mobile      phone makers against health claims
  • Governments of at least 12 countries,      including France, Israel and Finland are restricting use by children and      advising precautions to reduce direct exposure to the head; letting      children (who are much more vulnerable) use them risks a future epidemic      of brain cancer
  • some work is being done to create safer      phones ( the current i-phones are more powerful and hence more dangerous)      and Dr Davis supports this, seeing non- use of mobiles as unrealistic

 

A number of measures are suggested to reduce our risks:

  • use headsets, speaker phone and text      messaging rather than holding the phone next to the head; use landlines      whenever possible; if using a wireless headphone a low power Blue tooth      emitter is better
  • don’t keep the phone turned on next to      your body all day; if you must, turn the keypad towards your body – the      more dangerous antennas are at the back
  • try to use the phone only where signal      quality is good; in metal boxes (eg cars, trains, lifts) use it only in      emergency
  • texting is better, but not in your lap;      use a book as a barrier
  • put it on speaker – exposure drops      x1000-10000 with the phone a fairly small distance from your head
  • pregnant women should keep the phone away      from their tummy; men wanting to become fathers should switch it off in      their pockets
  • use a landline, not a cordless phone –      they are as dangerous as mobiles
  • beware radiation shields, w reduce      connection quality and force the phone to transmit at higher output power

 

Food for thought.  All the best, Rod

 

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