Water-Drinking...Plastic Safety...DDT

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The universal advice that has made guzzling water a national pastime is more urban myth than medical dogma and appears to lack scientific proof..."I have found no scientific proof that absolutely every person must 'drink at least eight glasses of water a day'."

Heinz Valtin, M.D., in an August 8 press release from Dartmouth Medical School.

See the letter ACSH's Ruth Kava wrote to the Wall Street Journal in May and an article she wrote for Priorities last year about the "eight glasses a day" myth.

[N]ote that most of us aren't dead and we've been using microwaves for a long time...And one ought to be a bit wary of announcements that originate with "People Against Cancer": I mean, who isn't?

A wise note from http://www.jerrypournelle.com site of the famed science fiction writer and libertarian commentator. Pournelle is responding to recent chain e-mails that warn of cancer from Saran Wrap and microwavable plastics.

Most of the current "hoaxes and rumors" listed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have an e-mail connection. They range from false reports of poison perfume samples to [the claim that] underarm anti-perspirants or deodorants cause breast cancer..."It's amazing to me that people believe these anonymous messages...I guess it's human nature. There are some people who are very gullible, and there are others who are suspicious of everything."

Dr. Mike Hogarth of UC Davis's medical school, quoted in the Sacramento Bee article "Saran Wrap Gets Bum Wrap" by Dorothy Korber.

Nada Mangialetti wrote about the dubious microwavable-plastics threat in June for HealthFactsAndFears.com.

The week I went to work at the Environmental Protection Agency in June of 1972, Administrator William Ruckelshaus issued an order banning the domestic production of DDT [a pesticide used to fight insect-borne diseases such as malaria]. My job, for two-and-a-half years, was to administer that ban. It made no sense to me then and it makes no sense to me now. I have occasion to recall this because of an invitation I received to an Interior Department briefing to be held in the Rachel Carson Room [named after the author of Silent Spring, the book that inspired the DDT ban]. I had not known that there was a Rachel Carson Room in the departmental headquarters and, while I'm not overly surprised, I do think it inappropriate to name a room for a woman responsible for more than 60 million deaths.

Former EPA worker Gordon S. Jones, in an August 11 article for UPI.

In June, ACSH noted the tragic anniversary of the DDT ban with articles by Todd Seavey, Thomas R. DeGregori, Henry I. Miller, Richard Tren, and Jerome Goddard.