TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Re: Do Allow Under-9's to use a Mobile

Re: Do Allow Under-9's to use a Mobile

Matthew Lombardi (
Thu, 3 Feb 2005 12:15:15 -0700 responded on the subject Re: Do Allow Under-9s
to Use a Mobile on 30 Jan 2005 08:03:13 GMT:

> Linc seemed to be implying that the only possible damage to cells
> had to be from the heat induced by the radiation. I was simply
> pointing out that there are other ways to damage cellular structure
> that don't involve heat, with the point being that while yes, it
> is probably virtually impossible for the electromagnetic radiation
> from a cell phone to induce enough temperature change to have any
> possible effect, there may be other mechanisms that haven't been
> discovered yet.

And maybe Scott Adams is right. Maybe not all the dinosaurs are
extinct, and that they're hiding in our houses. And one day they're
all going to come forward and ask why we're burning their friends'
dead carcasses in our cars and turning them into carpet and plastic.
Boy, they're really gonna be pissed.

Impossible? Nope -- they may have been able to survive the mass
extinction via mechanisms that haven't been discovered yet -- despite
the massive amount of evidence that we have to the contrary.

But should we make decisions that affect our lives because of this
remote possibility? Is that really what you're suggesting? Remember
that this began as a discussion of whether or not we should consider
not letting children use cellphones - would the radiation be risky to
them? I consider this to be about as likely as finding Dino in my
credenza, but you and others would have me live my life in fear for my
children's safety -- based on NO EVIDENCE of ANY KIND.

If we did that, we would quickly find our society paralyzed, unable to
do anything because of possible, billion-to-one-shot risks that we're
just too damned averse to taking.

"Life Is Short, But It's Wide" -- sure, go ahead and avoid reasonable
risks, but stop worrying about risks so low that they cannot be

- Matt

[TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: A regular reader/financial contributor
to TELECOM Digest sent me some snail mail today with an article from
*IEEE Spectrum*, December, 2004 issue which is quite relevant to
a discussion topic here in recent days. On page 22 of the December
issue, "Cellphones Linked to Brain Tumors". And subtitled, 'The good
news is they're benign, the bad news is they're here.'

A study of cellphone subscribers with more than ten years of use (in
other words users of cellphones at present since prior to 1993) had
doubled their *risk* (not that they had it; just that they had doubled
their risk for getting) _Accoustic Neuroma_, a benign condition
affecting one in one hundred thousand people. Accoustic Neuroma is a
'tumor' which attaches itself to the nerve connecting the brain and
the inner ear, causing some degree of hearing loss. This *risk* is
four times as high on the side of the head where the phone is usually

This latest study was done by Stefan Lonn of the (Swedish) Karolinska
Institute; other comments are made by James C. Lin, who studies the
biological effects of electromagnetic radiation at the University of
Illinois at Chicago; Kenneth R. Foster who studies the health risks
of nonionizing electromagnetic radiation at the University of Pennsylvania
in Philadelphia; and other scientists. They seem to conclude that users
who want cut the above (rather miniscule, but existent) risk even more
should use headsets.

NO tumors were associated with less than ten years of cell phone use,
an outcome which has been documented by past studies. So, as more and
more people approach this ten year plus mark in cell phone use, should
they be concerned about other malignant tumors? Experts are not sure,
according to the IEEE Spectrum report. If you wish a copy of this
article from IEEE Spectrum, December 2004, so you can show it to
friends and others who get into this discussion, send me a *stamped*
self-addressed envelope (long number 8 envelope) and ask for a copy.
No donation is needed unless you wish to send along a gift.
Patrick Townson, PO Box 50, Independence, KS 67301-0050. PAT]

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