The uncertainties regarding the risks among the public are not due to unclear research findings, but to the industry’s controlling influence over politics and the media.
By Peter Hensinger, Isabel Wilke
March 29, 2016
Translated into English by Katharina Gustavs: May 2017
PDF — entire article
Digital mobile devices emit nonionizing radiation. The risks of electromagnetic fields (EMF) to human health have been known from medical and military research since the 1950s. This article documents the latest study findings regarding the endpoints of genotoxicity, fertility, blood-brain barrier, cardiac functions, cognition, and behavior. A verified mechanism of damage is oxidative cell stress. New hypotheses of additional mechanisms of action will also be presented. Users are only insufficiently informed about the risks of wireless communication technologies; prevention policies are not introduced. The uncertainties regarding the risks among the public are not due to unclear research findings, but to the industry’s controlling influence over politics and the media.
Conclusions: Insights and Interests
Based on a review of the research findings from in vitro, in vivo, and epidemiological studies, there can only be one conclusion:
Long-term risks, in particular, pose huge health risks that cannot yet be determined.
Why the public is not informed about this, Prof. Martin Blank (USA), former president of the Bioelectromagnetics Society, documents in his book “OVERPOWERED. What Science Tells Us About the Dangers of Cell Phones and Other WiFi-age Devices” (2014) the history and the current state of the research as well as his own experience of the U.S. industry’s influence over politics and its communication of research findings.
Some long-term effects are known through the research reviews by Prof. Karl Hecht (HECHT 1996, 2012, 2015, 2016), which he carried out on behalf of the German federal government as early as the 1990s. They were banished to the archives. We are in the middle of an open trial that was sanctioned by the government against its better knowledge as reported by the eye witness Prof. Hecht in the UMG interview 2/2016 (HECHT 2016).
Fifty billion in licensing fees in 2001 and the German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder, also referred to as the “chancellor of the bosses,” delivered: “He often claimed that it would be completely wrong, in the context of innovations, to talk about risks first and opportunities second. The other way around, it would make sense: ‘First realize opportunities and do not talk about risks; only talk about risks when they also manifest themselves, that is, when they cannot be avoided anymore,’ “ Mirko Weber writes in the newspaper Stuttgarter Zeitung.
The organizational theorist Günther Ortmann calls this “too late as a political program” (WEBER 2016).
The Federal Office for Radiation Protection responded to this in its 2005 radiation protection guidelines with criticism:
“On the other hand, we face a large-scale introduction of new exposures without having been able to reach a final estimate and assessment of their risks (e.g. wireless communication technologies)” (p. 50).
In the guidelines, the suspicion of a cancer promoting effect had already been confirmed. After calls from industry associations to withdraw the guidelines, the discussion about this issue stopped.
So now we have an industry with a worldwide sale of billions of euros, excessive profits, hundreds of thousands of jobs, which is why people are expected to accept risks “without any alternative.”
In his book World Risk Society (2007), the sociologist Ulrich Beck writes:
“The predominant definitions grant engineering and natural sciences monopoly status: They — in fact, the mainstream, not counter experts and alternative scientists — decide without any participation of the public what is tolerable and what is not in the face of threatening uncertainties and risks. (…) The sequence of laboratory first, implementation second no longer applies. Instead, assessment comes after implementation and manufacturing prior to research. The dilemma, the big risks have rushed scientific logic into, applies universally: The sciences hover blindly above the boundary of risks” (BECK 2007, p. 73ff).
This is why Ulrich Beck, with reference to the English state theorist Thomas Hobbes, advocates
“an individual right of resistance for citizens. When the government produces or tolerates life-threatening conditions, then, according to Hobbes, ‘citizens are free to refuse them’ (…) For risks are produced by the industry, externalized by the economy, individualized by the legal system, legitimized by natural sciences, and played down by politicians“ (BECK 2007, p. 177).
As early as 1994, the ECOLOG Institute warned in its book Risiko Elektrosmog? [Electrosmog a Risk?]:
“The entire earth turns more and more into a huge laboratory in which we, depending on our attitude and profession, observe with eagerness or horror which global impact the mass use of chemicals, electromagnetic fields, genetically manipulated organisms will have – only we cannot clean up this laboratory quite as easily when we realize the experiment went wrong” (NEITZKE et al. 1994, p. 319).
We cannot allow this to continue because, for reasons of profit, the sum total of all human-caused environmental damage poses a risk to the very existence of the human species.
Posted under Fair Use Rules.