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Author Topic: Aspartame: Sweet Misery - A Poisoned World (Wikipedia Abuse)  (Read 4040 times)

Renegade

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Aspartame: Sweet Misery - A Poisoned World (Wikipedia Abuse)
« on: January 12, 2011, 05:02:41 AM »
Yikes... Feel like another horror story? Got 2 horror stories for you here...

First horror story is about aspartame and how dangerous it is.

http://www.online-do...artame-sweet-misery/

I think I'll stick with sugar... (Yeah... I'm still limiting that to almost none.)

Still, I had to have a look, so I checked here:

Aspartame Controversyw

Interestingly enough, there is more than 1 edit per day there. Having a look at older ones, and at the current one, it's blatantly obvious that the current version is a highly sanitized "controversy" with no real controversy. All anti-aspartame information has been removed or dismissed off-hand.

This is an anti-aspartame site that looks interesting:

http://dorway.com/

Second horror story is about Wikipedia:

But it all got me to thinking about Wikipedia... It really looks like Wikipedia is suffering some pretty serious abuse there. Like, if there's a controversy, shouldn't there be something about the controversy there, and not something that entirely dismisses the controversy?

It's obvious that there is a serious problem there. Wikipedia is being used to push an agenda. That's not information. It's propaganda.

Now, it's not Wikipedia's fault, and I'm most certainly NOT blaming Wikipedia. I DO want to point out that there is something happening there that doesn't seem to be above board.

But it seems to me that this will be a very real problem in the future as those with cash on hand can pay to get their message up there much easier than a community can likely respond.

I'm all for free speech and whatnot, but I'm also very much for honesty, integrity, and responsibility.
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4wd

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Re: Aspartame: Sweet Misery - A Poisoned World (Wikipedia Abuse)
« Reply #1 on: January 12, 2011, 06:53:04 AM »
I don't touch anything with Aspartame in it and haven't since an article in a newspaper, (or maybe TV/magazine), came out at the time of the Atlanta Olympics describing how Aspartame broke down at around 60deg C into formaldehyde and something else, (escapes me - was a while ago).

Whether it's true or not, I don't know, but I steer away from artificial sweeteners....mainly because I prefer the real stuff.   :P

The origin I was thinking of appears to be this: Dangers of sweetener aspartame

f0dder

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Re: Aspartame: Sweet Misery - A Poisoned World (Wikipedia Abuse)
« Reply #2 on: January 12, 2011, 07:31:04 AM »
But it all got me to thinking about Wikipedia... It really looks like Wikipedia is suffering some pretty serious abuse there. Like, if there's a controversy, shouldn't there be something about the controversy there, and not something that entirely dismisses the controversy?
Nothing new, unfortunately - articles with enough monetary, political or religious importance (<cynicism>which all boils down to monetary interests</cynicism>) aren't going to have super reliable information on wikipedia.
- carpe noctem

Eóin

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Re: Aspartame: Sweet Misery - A Poisoned World (Wikipedia Abuse)
« Reply #3 on: January 12, 2011, 08:07:34 AM »
When I hear something from a reliable source about Aspartame I'll take the information on board. But I don't take health advice from casual sources.

Renegade

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Re: Aspartame: Sweet Misery - A Poisoned World (Wikipedia Abuse)
« Reply #4 on: January 12, 2011, 08:41:44 AM »
When I hear something from a reliable source about Aspartame I'll take the information on board. But I don't take health advice from casual sources.

THIS is my worry. We all too often take Wikipedia as "truth".

Now, take those that are less "techno-savvy" as most people here. What will THEY believe?

It's scary. Who are the "authorities"? We cannot trust Wikipedia.

For tech stuff, it's different. In tech, we're more honest.
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app103

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Re: Aspartame: Sweet Misery - A Poisoned World (Wikipedia Abuse)
« Reply #5 on: January 12, 2011, 09:33:04 AM »
When I hear something from a reliable source about Aspartame I'll take the information on board. But I don't take health advice from casual sources.

THIS is my worry. We all too often take Wikipedia as "truth".

Now, take those that are less "techno-savvy" as most people here. What will THEY believe?

It's scary. Who are the "authorities"? We cannot trust Wikipedia.

For tech stuff, it's different. In tech, we're more honest.

There is a good reason why a lot of schools won't allow students to cite Wikipedia as a source, and this is it.

f0dder

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Re: Aspartame: Sweet Misery - A Poisoned World (Wikipedia Abuse)
« Reply #6 on: January 12, 2011, 10:04:14 AM »
There is a good reason why a lot of schools won't allow students to cite Wikipedia as a source, and this is it.
IMHO flat out banning wikipedia as a source is a bit silly, since a lot of articles (especially those about tech) are decent enough. But there's definitely a lot of articles for which WP shouldn't be used as an authoritative source :)

Still, for most stuff it does serve as a good starting point for research.
- carpe noctem

steeladept

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Re: Aspartame: Sweet Misery - A Poisoned World (Wikipedia Abuse)
« Reply #7 on: January 12, 2011, 10:07:00 AM »
IMHO flat out banning wikipedia as a source is a bit silly, since a lot of articles (especially those about tech) are decent enough. But there's definitely a lot of articles for which WP shouldn't be used as an authoritative source :)

Still, for most stuff it does serve as a good starting point for research.
That is fine if you are using it as a source for FINDING primary sources, but most schools won't accept it AS the primary (or even secondary) source for just that reason.  That is why it is not silly at all.  The right way to use it for research is to go to Wikipedia, go to the source links, and use those sources - or not, depending on the project.

Renegade

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Re: Aspartame: Sweet Misery - A Poisoned World (Wikipedia Abuse)
« Reply #8 on: January 12, 2011, 10:11:37 AM »
Checking the Wikipedia History is a VERY good thing to do. It's time consuming, but you can learn a lot. Especially things like how certain articles are flooded with 1-sided views.
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JavaJones

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Re: Aspartame: Sweet Misery - A Poisoned World (Wikipedia Abuse)
« Reply #9 on: January 12, 2011, 03:53:31 PM »
Wikipedia is not even intended as a primary source as far as I know. It's intended to give information on a subject then refer to *its* primary sources for further information and proper referencing.

Btw Renegade, I presume you've read the Aspartame talk page, it's pretty interesting to watch the back-and-forth:
http://en.wikipedia....s_raised_by_Arydberg
While I'm not a fan of aspartame in general, I'm also a fan of good science and reliable sources. This is especially true given various recent scandals regarding similar "edge" research, like the vaccine-autism controversy. So I don't necessarily feel the page is necessarily *that* biased, it's biased (theoretically) toward an accepted scientific view ("accepted" here meaning peer-reviewed and not found to be faulty, misrepresented, etc.). I didn't see a lot of good, sourced rebuttal from the opposing side in the discussion page unfortunately; mostly it was the editors saying "give us reliable external sources" and then getting a reply like "check this other page that collects theories about the subject", which of course is neither reliable nor an original source. I'd like to believe the opposing argument *is* stronger than that though!

- Oshyan

Renegade

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Re: Aspartame: Sweet Misery - A Poisoned World (Wikipedia Abuse)
« Reply #10 on: January 12, 2011, 08:44:08 PM »
Wikipedia is not even intended as a primary source as far as I know. It's intended to give information on a subject then refer to *its* primary sources for further information and proper referencing.

Btw Renegade, I presume you've read the Aspartame talk page, it's pretty interesting to watch the back-and-forth:
http://en.wikipedia....s_raised_by_Arydberg
While I'm not a fan of aspartame in general, I'm also a fan of good science and reliable sources. This is especially true given various recent scandals regarding similar "edge" research, like the vaccine-autism controversy. So I don't necessarily feel the page is necessarily *that* biased, it's biased (theoretically) toward an accepted scientific view ("accepted" here meaning peer-reviewed and not found to be faulty, misrepresented, etc.). I didn't see a lot of good, sourced rebuttal from the opposing side in the discussion page unfortunately; mostly it was the editors saying "give us reliable external sources" and then getting a reply like "check this other page that collects theories about the subject", which of course is neither reliable nor an original source. I'd like to believe the opposing argument *is* stronger than that though!

Reading through the talk, I see the same patterns all the time: Controversy then dismissal for reason "X".

Nothing controversial is admitted, and at every stage, if a source meets a criterion, another criterion is introduced. Not RS. Must be purchased. Biased source. Primary source. etc. etc. There is no way anything controversial can be admitted like that. What's the point? There's obviously no controversy then, right?

It's simply too easy to say that no sources that aren't from the FDA or whatever aren't accepted.

I really don't buy into much "official" stuff. It's just a way of creating a club and excluding others. A lot of that seems to be going on. I saw many resources that should suffice, but were dismissed. "No, that's not official enough..." It simply allows continually narrowing the scope of what can be accepted. Documentaries on the topic are dismissed. What more can be done? i.e. There's no satisfying many of the editors there with any anti-aspartame source. As far as they are concerned, all anti-aspartame sources are poison. :P

At some point there has got to be something that can be included as controversial.
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JavaJones

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Re: Aspartame: Sweet Misery - A Poisoned World (Wikipedia Abuse)
« Reply #11 on: January 13, 2011, 02:48:42 AM »
As far as I saw all the criteria are standard Wikipedia requirements for well-written, sourced articles. Just because they didn't trot out a full list of them every time one part was not satisfied, doesn't mean they're just randomly coming up with reasons to deny. Believe me I understand what you're saying and I don't entirely disagree with you, but I'm not as convinced there's wrongdoing here. It's a difficult subject, and the truth is no, a documentary that interviews a bunch of "victims", without in-depth scientific inquiry, is *not* a valid primary source. Most documentaries in fact should probably not be considered *primary* sources. They are inherently and necessarily shallow in their information presentation due to the format. But *their* source materials should be valid. It's all a question of getting back to the root. I don't know if there are any/many legitimate roots for the aspartame information, unfortunately. That's not to say the information is fundamentally invalid, just that it may not yet have been properly, verifiably tested. That is of course a problem with all controversial material...

Let the "fringe" people get to dropping some serious science on the scene and they'll be funky in no time. Or something. Sorry, I'm in a silly mood tonight. ;)

- Oshyan

Renegade

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Re: Aspartame: Sweet Misery - A Poisoned World (Wikipedia Abuse)
« Reply #12 on: January 13, 2011, 07:06:03 AM »
A lot of the sources were sketchy, but even 1...

And while the video had a lot of questionable material, it also had 'experts' that should qualify, but it was still dismissed.

Analogous controversy (violates Godwin's law)
Analogously, holocaust denials often rely on the fact that no gas was found at Auschwitz in the walls/bricks, and this is a core part of the controversy. Omitting it as a part of the controversy is simply wrong as it dismisses the controversy outright. Now, the chambers were torn down then later rebuilt, which explains why no gas can be found there. But that's not the point. There's a difference between dismissal and discussion. But, if you're going to discuss the issue, it's pretty hard to not cite books like "Did 6 Million Really Die?" as they sit at the center of the controversy.


For aspartame, excluding all controversial evidence/positions in an article about controversy is to say that the article should simply be deleted because there is no controversy.

One problem seems that no matter what, there are always politics involved, so there's always going to be... Sigh...

Dunno... It all just seems *too* clean and neat.
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Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker

JavaJones

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Re: Aspartame: Sweet Misery - A Poisoned World (Wikipedia Abuse)
« Reply #13 on: January 13, 2011, 12:50:34 PM »
I hear you, yeah. I do think the article could be improved.

- Oshyan

Deozaan

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Re: Aspartame: Sweet Misery - A Poisoned World (Wikipedia Abuse)
« Reply #14 on: January 14, 2011, 06:53:04 PM »
Currently watching the video now.

Weird how they pronounce Aspartame. Everyone I know pronounces it so it sounds similar to "as part of me."


Renegade

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Re: Aspartame: Sweet Misery - A Poisoned World (Wikipedia Abuse)
« Reply #15 on: January 14, 2011, 07:09:00 PM »
Currently watching the video now.

Weird how they pronounce Aspartame. Everyone I know pronounces it so it sounds similar to "as part of me."

There are a few things like that in English that get weird pronunciations sometimes. "Jujube" is one. It's properly pronounced like "jew jewb" without an "ee" sound at the end.
Slow Down Music - Where I commit thought crimes...

Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker

Deozaan

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Re: Aspartame: Sweet Misery - A Poisoned World (Wikipedia Abuse)
« Reply #16 on: January 14, 2011, 07:30:21 PM »
Just finished the video.

Very interesting. I do like my sweets but I'm glad to say I always preferred the real thing when it comes to sugars. I understand HFCS and sugar aren't exactly healthy, but if there's something I'm going to ignorantly poison myself with for years before I learn how dangerous it really is, I'd much rather it be fructose than aspartame!

I didn't notice a date on the video. The quality and some things like that made it seem like it was made in the 90s, but some of the people mentioned years in the 2000s range. Any idea when the video was released/published?

Weird how they pronounce Aspartame. Everyone I know pronounces it so it sounds similar to "as part of me."

There are a few things like that in English that get weird pronunciations sometimes. "Jujube" is one. It's properly pronounced like "jew jewb" without an "ee" sound at the end.

Speaking of which, apparently everyone around here also incorrectly pronounces "fructose." Everyone around here pronounces the 'u' in fructose so that it rhymes with "fruit" rather than rhyming with "from."

« Last Edit: January 14, 2011, 07:58:44 PM by Deozaan »

Renegade

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Re: Aspartame: Sweet Misery - A Poisoned World (Wikipedia Abuse)
« Reply #17 on: January 14, 2011, 07:45:21 PM »
I believe it is from 2004. It was in the Wikipedia article, but was removed. Several times.
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tomos

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Re: Aspartame: Sweet Misery - A Poisoned World (Wikipedia Abuse)
« Reply #18 on: January 15, 2011, 03:43:39 AM »
In the States, 1990, I tried giving up cigarettes and started chewing a sugar-free gum.
What was really ironic was that the gum came with a big cancer warning on the wrapper - unfortunately I cant remember what artificial sweetener was used in it...


PS I always hated the taste of aspartame... I could add that to wikipedia - tastes like sh!te, maybe after the bit where they say:
The taste of aspartame and other artificial sweeteners differ from that of table sugar in the times of onset and how long the sweetness lasts, though aspartame comes closest amongst artificial sweeteners to sugar's taste profile - but it still tastes like _____ :p
Tom

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Re: Aspartame: Sweet Misery - A Poisoned World (Wikipedia Abuse)
« Reply #19 on: January 15, 2011, 03:50:23 AM »
What was really ironic was that the gum came with a big cancer warning on the wrapper - unfortunately I cant remember what artificial sweetener was used in it...

I'd guess saccharine. But possibly MSG.

Interesting info on saccharine's safety on Wikipedia:

Studies in laboratory rats during the early 1970s linked saccharin with the development of bladder cancer in rodents, resulting in the United States Congress mandating that all food containing saccharin bear a warning label.

However, in 2000, the warning labels were removed because scientists learned that rodents, unlike humans, have a unique combination of high pH, high calcium phosphate, and high protein levels in their urine.[20][21] One or more of the proteins that is more prevalent in male rats combines with calcium phosphate and saccharin to produce microcrystals that damage the lining of the bladder. Over time, the rat's bladder responds to this damage by over-producing cells to repair the damage, and this leads to tumor formation. As this does not occur in humans, there may not be elevated bladder cancer risk.