Friday, April 12, 2013

The Gullible "Moms Across America"- A Post Mortem

A friend sent me a link to an alleged scientific report.  The "report", found here, claims to show the "stunning" nutrient content in GMO corn vs. non-GMO corn.  Mom's Across America, a website dedicated to fear mongering and cleansing of scientific input, posted this information and decorated it with a healthy sprinkling of non-critical thinking and logical fallacy. 

Unfortunately for them, the "report" has no source cited, no methods, no anything.  Definitions in the footnotes are wrong.  It appears to be a table of soil data (there is more zinc and copper than carbon present, etc) or is a complete fabrication. 

When corrected by scientists in the comments section, we were ripped apart by aggressive robot-like dogma that discredited us, slandered us and distorted our work. 

When we replied, many of the replies were censored from the website, allowing only the insane comments of bitter non-scientists to be presented.  As usual, if you can't discuss the facts, cleanse the facts so that the lies run unopposed. 

The best part is, Zen Honeycutt, the website administrator and attack dog, is one of the least scientific thinkers I ever have seen.  When you read her comments on her blog you'll see disdain and condescension for science and scientists. These folks are bitter and mean. 

Here is a sample of one of her (his) comments to justify her assault on science and scientists, and her rationale for silencing scientific discussion. You should look here to see all of it

Zen and her ilk stand by these data as legitimate.  She repeatedly bolsters their scientific validity as representing data from corn. Here's a little sample of the kookiness. (her comments in italic, my responses follow)
  
ZH: (GMO nurition) explains a lot…why animals will NOTeat GMO corn even in the dead of winter. 

KF: Cute anecdote.  Again, good at believing anti-scientific junk, not much of a science filter.

ZH:  (this is) Why human allergies have increased 400% since GMOs were introduced…why health issues have skyrocketed. 

KF: Again, someone that has no understanding of correlation vs. causation. 

ZH: Irregardless of this report, I have scores of Moms who have answered our health survey who repeatedly share that going off GMOs reduced, improved or dissappeared their children’s and their own health issues.

KF:  Aside from the use of "irregardless", this is frightening.  First, of course readers of her non-scientific website will fill out a poll saying that there are problems.  Second, her family members have health problems and she blames safe food. It is a lovely anecdote, not scientific, and when 70% of the food in this country contains transgenic ingredients and does not cause health effects, she clearly is barking up the wrong tree. Worse, her family members may have serious underlying medical problems that go untreated because a scapegoat product. 

ZH: Not eating something that has this many toxins in it would for sure be a factor in an improvement in health. 

KF:  Sure, if it had toxins in it.

ZH:  I have also been told that this report looks like a soil report because, yes, this usually is the kind of test done on soil. The people who took it ran this panel of tests because they wanted to test for mineral and toxins usually on found in soil, NOT on food, so that was the closest test to run. 

KF: Somehow she knows the people that did the work, but does not post that information.  That's a red flag to me.  Perhaps someone manufactured the information and used her website as a conduit.

ZH: Chris (a commenter on the website), just because it looks like a soil report, does not mean it is, if it says corn report, at some point, unless you have another agenda, the public needs to take things at face value…juts like I am sure your field would appreciate any study that you do and title it as you see fit, to read it and take it as you say.

KF: Chris posted that it was a soil report.  Again, Zen deflects scientific inquiry to an underlying conspiracy and agenda.  She says, "The public needs to take things at face value".   I have a UFO in Rosewell to sell her.

ZH:  I respectfully ask you Chris to use your intellect to create something useful and please stop posting on this website. We have heard your point, get your stand for honesty, and thank you for please moving on. Thank you.

KF: And then Chris is asked to move along and not comment again

That truth, reason and critical thinking are not allowed on Moms Across America!  If you dare to discuss science, you are asked to not comment.  If you continue to do so (or even if you're not) your comments are expunged.

This whole situation should be extremely meaningful to the anti-GMO movement.  Here a report, with no source in the real literature is distributed as gospel and defended rabidly. Scientists are trashed and science ignored.  It could be fake data from an anti-anti-GMO interest too, and that would be really interesting to see...  

----------------
Post-Mortem

So what is this report?  It comes from a PDF from a company called Profit Pro (ironically, as transgenic technology opponents claim that transgenics are only about profit) and their newsletter. Some good sleuthing by readers of this blog shows that Profit Pro's December 2012 and January 2013  newsletter present this table. They don't even know what Brix is. 

They have a product they want to sell, they show a bogus comparison, and scare the pants off non-critical readers.  

A quick look at the website's "articles" shows a credulous subscription to nonsense, faux scientific articles that fool readers. Same old crap.  

PLUS!!  Natural News has picked up on this garbage, calling it a "breakthrough report" and a "paper".  The best part is that the title starts with "Biotech Lies".


Please think for a minute.  Who is really misrepresenting science here?  If all of this does not demonstrate the clear agenda and lack of scientific thinking in the anti-GMO movement, what does? 




Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Blocked from Commenting- for Exposing Facts

Last week I pointed out that some data pitched as the dangers of GM corn were actually not from corn, but from soil itself. I found the root of the problem on Moms Across America a website desiring to stoke fear of biotechnology-- even if it means lying to readers and silencing critics that dare to talk science.

Moms Across America- Keeping Children Safe from Critical Thinking Since (at least) 2013

To recap, they posted a table of data allegedly comparing GM to non-GM corn.  The whole story is here. The conclusion from their side is that GM corn contains more zinc and copper than carbon and is loaded with glyphosate and formaldehyde.  My conclusion was that they were fooled with soil data, which is obviously the case.

When I called out the bogus information the followers of the site immediately jumped to diffuse-and-attack mode.  The comments below show this beautifully.  Not only do they try to link me to Big Corporate Ag (predictably), they also move the goalpost--   since they have been caught red handed either lying or spreading bad information unknowingly... the focus changes from the food, to the soil.  Typical.

I'm even reminded hat I'm not a soil scientist.  It is all about tearing me down, not supporting their information and providing a source or additional evidence about this magic GMO high-zinc corn.

In the same passage  I was criticized by others on that site, again connected to  Monsanto (this time because I did a video for Biofortified.org and they were apparently noted by Monsanto as a good source of biotech information (talk about six degrees of Monsanto separation!)).  You can read it all in the comments section of the website, or in a nugget like this one:



Gemma tells me of my close affiliation with Monsanto.  Wow!  I'm almost president of the company! 


Then my comments were removed, censored, because science does not mesh with their delusion.

Unfortunately I didn't get screen caps of my comments, but they all have been removed.  You can tell where they were by reading the comments section.


You can see here in Gemma Starr's comments that she really respects scientists. She was responding to my gentle and kind educational comments meant to guide and teach.  Glad she can "LOL" at the people that speak from science-based evidence.


Censored.  Nice job Moms Across America.  You are absolutely the crappiest moms I can imagine-- insulate people, including children, from the truth you find inconvenient to your cause.  Shame on you.  Teach your children to think critically and understand reality from fantasy.  That's the best gift you can give them.

THE BEST PART is that the woman at Moms Across America was happy to put a lame and rambling (borderline insane) comment on this Illumination blog.  Talk about internet balls!  Distills facts from her website that I present, but then wants her insanity represented on a scientific site!

I'm happy to leave her comments on my site.  She makes my point impeccably.


Here's what you get from Moms Across America: 

--Publication of a bogus report, or at least misrepresentation of real data

-- Discrediting scientific credentials of a helpful scientist

-- Development of tenuous links to try to show conflict of interest, again to discredit good scientific evidence

-- A desire to be heard on a reciprocal platform.  Good Ol' Zen Honeycutt wants to be heard here on Illumination, but my comments are no allowed on Moms Across America!   They want to give the illusion of a debate on my site, but a "no room for other thoughts" approach on theirs.


-- ULTIMATELY, they censor a scientist providing helpful guidance because it does not support their inconvenient interpretations and threatens their religion of "science/scientists=liars"  

To those on the fence on this issue, this behavior should be extremely telling.

The insanity continues.  Soil data are shown as corn nutritional data and the credulous keep on believing it, defending it, and teaching it to a new generation of suckers.  Just more work for me and the world's thousands of independent, academic scientists to clean up later.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

An Anti-Intellectual Attack Against Young Women

A petition has gone viral.   Spawned from an ambitious, maybe eight year old girl Alicia Serratos of Orange County, CA, a petition has been launched on Change.org to persuade the Girl Scouts of America to remove transgenic (GMO) ingredients from girl scout cookies.  Alicia claims (well, her parents claim) that "GMOs studies (sic) (in animals) have linked them to infertility, immune problems, accelerated aging, faulty insulin regulation, and changes in major organs and the gastrointestinal system."


The page from Alica's anti-GMO cookie petition.  It is hard to get a hunger for cookies when you have been fed full of deception. 



Of course, there is no real evidence to support her claims of health problems that is accepted by the scientific community.  Scientific consensus is that transgenic crops have an outstanding safety record and have no plausible mechanism of harm.

While her parents should be congratulated about raising a daughter that is inspired to take action and create change, they should be harshly criticized for perpetuating the mis-truths of activists that want to instill fear. Her parents provide a conduit to push the agenda of the deceptive.  It does not teach Alicia critical thinking, how to evaluate science, and how to identify real experts to help her address her concerns. THESE are the processes we should be teaching our daughters!

Instead, little Alicia will be taught to criticize good technology, demonize scientists, and parrot contrived messages of fear. She'll develop the credulity that leaves her vulnerable to those that wish to take advantage of her.  She won't question the reality of a claim, a dangerous place to be as a young woman getting ready to take on life.

Everyone agrees that we need to be teaching young women STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) subjects and developing their interest in these areas.  Here, Alicia is being taught that scientists are unreliable and that technology is dangerous.

It also potentially tarnishes the Girl Scouts of the USA brand, and affects fundraising for an organization that does good things for young women with the money.

To raise a generation of strong and competent women we need to teach them facts, not use them as pawns to reinforce a misguided parental agenda.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Never Agree to Disagree in Science

Every now and then I'll be in a discussion with someone on a scientific topic.  There are three conversation enders that I abhor. 

1.  "You are just a shill for (insert company, political party, etc here), how much are they paying you?"  Read about that one here. 


2.   "What-ever."  Which is code for "I got nuthin'" 


3.  "We'll just have to agree to disagree." 


I just hate that last one, and it is the typical refuge of someone intelligent that has walled off their desire, but not ability, to learn about a given topic. 


For me, I can't "Agree to Disagree" about a scientific topic. If I'm wrong, please show me the evidence-- convince me. If you're wrong, it is important that I show you my evidence and convince you. 



Open hearts and minds can agree to find Truth, 
and discussion of evidence is the first step.  Scientists and
teachers are, by nature, compelled to do this  


Hair combing poster child Albert Einstein once said, "I'm not interested in being right, I am only concerned with whether I am or not.".  


This sentiment encapsulates the approach of most scientists.  Being right is not our job.  Testing a hypothesis and finding support for it, or evidence against it, is our job.  Our goal is to be right or wrong, just not somewhere in between.


As teachers we synthesize the information we have, distill patterns and form interpretations and conclusions.  This is what we teach, it is "right" until someone shows us otherwise. As a teacher, I care too much to let you be wrong, so on subjects where I am an authority I feel a sense of duty to add my thoughts.  In subjects where I am not an authority I feel a need to learn. 


When discussing a topic with a scientist bring real evidence, not bluster, accusations or finger pointing.  Leave anecdotes, hearsay and flimsy evidence at home.  Disagree on leaving the topic open ended.  Agree to civil discussion and learning.  Agree on seeking the truth, as the truth has no agenda. 


We never have to agree to disagree if we both agree on the Truth.





Monday, October 15, 2012

Comments Blocked by the "Right to Know"

Awesome.  For the second time in as many days I have been blocked from providing scientific content to rants on YouTube regarding California Proposition 37.  After all, it is about the Right to Know, as long as it is something they want to hear!

The situation happened on a YouTube video "That Monsanto does not want you to see, Brought to you by Nutiva and Elevate".  It presents Danny DeVito, Bill (don't vaccinate your kids) Maher, and other Hollywood luminaries that I don't recognize.  They tell us that it is a 'right to know' what's in our food, a point I don't organically disagree with, yet maintain that prop37 is an inappropriate, highly flawed, vehicle.

So I begin to comment in the 'comments' section under the name "Swampwaffle".  You can see, my comments are scientific, concise, polite and engaging.  I invite opportunities to share evidence and partake in a scholarly discussion.  With one particularly energetic person who repeatedly called me a "shill", "Nazi" and told me "fuck off and die", I suggested that he come visit me and share the same bravado.  I'd let a little air out of his stupid balloon real quick. Actually, my heart goes out to the little bastard and if he showed up I'd buy him a beer and some deodorant, then talk about how wonderful science really is. That's how I roll.

The best part is, they removed my comments about Bill Maher believing that vaccination was evil.  Later, after several back-n-forths with various posters, the owner of the video has blocked me from posting!  So much for Right to Know!  More like right to know, as long as it is something we agree with.



The poster of a celebrity-studded Prop37 "Right to Know" video has blocked me
from commenting on the video.  Oh cruel irony! 


To me, I'll take this as a badge of honor.  A voice of scientific reason is polluting the retarded sea of contorted belief and fantasy.  This is the absolute perfect example of how this movement reeks of anti-science, anti-intellectualism and flawed logic.  They are little robots, filled with malice and no scientific training, hiding behind anonymous monikers, wielding empty threats and unsubstantiated claims. 

Welcome to the bankrupt logic and reasoning of the anti-GMO movement. 

Maybe you'll be compelled to waste some of your time informing the great throng of the unteachable. The video is here.  Hit mute first before loading.  On second thought, leave it on.  It is all about the Right to Know. 

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Lost Rebuttal from Dr. Ena

Dr. Ena Valikov is a Veterinarian from Huntington Beach, CA.  She frequently comments on posts, usually those regarding transgenic technologies, and presents coherent arguments that elevate the discussion.  She has a background in biochemistry so she speaks science well and can discuss the literature.

Yesterday morning my gmail account posted several responses to my September 21 post. There were two there from Dr. Ena.  I was excited to read them and prepare my responses. Yet when I looked at the comment section of the article one of her comments was not there.  Instead, there was an appropriately cynical comment from Dr. Ena about censoring the comments.

I have no idea what happened or where her comment disappeared to.  However, I was disappointed and upset for several reasons.  First, I appreciate an informed rebuttal because I am the first to admit, I might be wrong.  I'm glad to consider all evidence in my synthesis.  Second, I would never, and have never censored a comment. On one of my YouTube posts someone made rude and offensive comments about one of my student's foreign accents.  I left it, and pointed out its ignorance. This is a marketplace of ideas and to be a censoring or dismissive gatekeeper is the stuff of activism, not science.

I'm posting here Dr. Ena's lost comment.  I can't seem to find her as I don't have her actual email address, so I hope this is acceptable (I'll take this down if you don't want it posted, Ena).  I just feel awful, I don't like how it taints the perception of communication in this forum.

So here I post Dr. Ena's points in response to my Sept 21 post, and her arguments supporting Seralini's recent work.  My comments will appear below in the Comments section.

Ena Valikov has left a new comment on your post "Rats, Tumors and Critical Assessment of Science": 

(KF) Ena, a replicated study would be great, unfortunately Seralini's stuff never is replicated.
Meaning that you don't have a single LONG TERM STUDY examining laboratory animals for Long Term Chronic effects.

No, I don't think this study is trash, because I know mammary tumors to be estrogen sensitive. The study demonstrated elevated estradiol levels in both males and females and even proposed a mechanism of action by which EPSPS can alter estradiol levels. 

As to the control groups and experimental group : why is there a study on biofortified composed of 15 rats, which none of you objected to?
Prima facie evidence that a phytocystatin for transgenic plant resistance to nematodes is not a toxic risk in the human diet.http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14747684

It is a study on 15 rats fed purified extract rather then the genetically modified rice… and the only biochemical/ hematological patient data actually published is

TABLE 1
Summary of results from the toxicological study of male Sprague-Dawley rats administered the cystatin OcIΔD861

OcIΔD86 [mg/(kg · d)]
0 0.1 1 10
Food intake, g
    d 3–7 25.04 ± 0.94 25.80 ± 0.90 26.82 ± 1.48a 25.36 ± 1.42
    d 7–10 26.06 ± 0.40 25.68 ± 1.32 27.74 ± 1.43a 25.82 ± 0.98
Organ weight
    Cecum (empty), g 0.305 ± 0.033 0.334 ± 0.057 0.32 ± 0.013 0.35 ± 0.041a
    Liver, g 3.12 ± 0.16 3.00 ± 0.072a 3.02 ± 0.090a 3.04 ± 0.12
Serum analysis
    Potassium, mmol/L 4.51 ± 0.27 4.78 ± 0.318 4.66 ± 0.251 4.95 ± 0.82a
    Urea, mmol/L 6.58 ± 0.82 5.61 ± 0.67b 6.09 ± 0.616 6.24 ± 0.887
    Creatinine, μmol/L 39.0 ± 2.83 39.7 ± 3.02 41.0 ± 1.66 41.5 ± 3.21a
    γ-Glutamyl transferase, U/L 0.07 ± 0.067 0.42 ± 0.67a 0.13 ± 0.11 0.18 ± 0.13

——————————————————————————————
Here is what a blood panel should actually look like:
Test Result Reference Range
ALK. PHOSPHATASE 294 10 – 150 U/L HIGH
ALT (SGPT) 57 5 – 107 U/L
AST (SGOT) 25 5 – 55 U/L
CK 171 10 – 200 U/L
GGT 4 0 – 14 U/L
AMYLASE 344 450 – 1240 U/L LOW
LIPASE 397 100 – 750 U/L
ALBUMIN 3.9 2.5 – 4.0 g/dL
TOTAL PROTEIN 8.4 5.1 – 7.8 g/dL HIGH
GLOBULIN 4.5 2.1 – 4.5 g/dL
TOTAL BILIRUBIN 0.2 0.0 – 0.4 mg/dL
DIRECT BILIRUBIN 0.1 0.0 – 0.2 mg/dL
BUN 34 7 – 27 mg/dL HIGH
CREATININE 1.2 0.4 – 1.8 mg/dL
CHOLESTEROL 336 112 – 328 mg/dL HIGH
GLUCOSE 131 60 – 125 mg/dL HIGH
CALCIUM 11.0 8.2 – 12.4 mg/dL
PHOSPHORUS 8.3 2.1 – 6.3 mg/dL HIGH
TCO2 (BICARBONATE) 25 17 – 24 mEq/L HIGH
CHLORIDE 87 105 – 115 mEq/L LOW
POTASSIUM 4.3 4.0 – 5.6 mEq/L
SODIUM 144 141 – 156 mEq/L
A/G RATIO 0.9 0.6 – 1.6
B/C RATIO 28.3
INDIRECT BILIRUBIN 0.1 0 – 0.3 mg/dL
TRIGLYCERIDE 98 20 – 150 mg/dL
NA/K RATIO 33 27 – 40
HEMOLYSIS INDEX (1) N
LIPEMIA INDEX (2) N
ANION GAP 36 12 – 24 mEq/L HIGH

WBC 26.7 5.7 – 16.3 K/uL HIGH
RBC 8.03 5.5 – 8.5 M/uL
HGB 19.1 12 – 18 g/dL HIGH
HCT 52.0 37 – 55 %
MCV 65 60 – 77 fL
MCH 23.8 19.5 – 26.0 pg
MCHC 36.7 32 – 36 g/dL HIGH
NEUTROPHIL SEG 80 60 – 77 % HIGH
NEUTROPHIL BANDS 5 0 – 3 % HIGH
LYMPHOCYTES 4 12 – 30 % LOW
MONOCYTES 11 3 – 10 % HIGH
EOSINOPHIL 0 2 – 10 % LOW
BASOPHIL 0 0 – 1 %
AUTO PLATELET 725 164 – 510 K/uL HIGH
PLATELET COMMENTS
PLATELETS APPEAR INCREASED.

ABSOLUTE NEUTROPHIL SEG 21360 3000 – 11500 /uL
ABSOLUTE NEUTROPHIL BAND 1335 0 – 300 /uL
ABSOLUTE LYMPHOCYTE 1068 1000 – 4800 /uL
ABSOLUTE MONOCYTE 2937 150 – 1350 /uL
ABSOLUTE EOSINOPHIL 0 100 – 1250 /uL
ABSOLUTE BASOPHIL 0 0 – 100 /uL

SENIOR PROFILE W/ TRIG : T4
Test Result Reference Range
T4 (1) 2.5 1.0 – 4.0 ug/dL


The study’s limitations are quite obvious: its duration is 21 days and N=15, not to mention that the rats weren’t fed the genetically engineered rice, but rather the isolated protein (which is not equivalent to the whole food).

Can you please explain how findings in 15 rats fed this GMO for 21 days imply safety in millions of people, eating the stuff for decades?

Because from my vantage point, the only time you really care about control group size, or statistics--is when a study comes out suggestive of long term harm. You know ... the kind you would never catch, if you only study the GMO for the required 90 days. 



Posted by Ena Valikov to Illumination at September 21, 2012 10:47 PM


Friday, September 21, 2012

Rats, Tumors and Critical Assessment of Science



My email box exploded with new messages.  A flurry of notes contained a link to a new peer-reviewed paper, a work showing that rats fed “GMO” corn developed massive tumors and died early, compared to controls.  Immediately I smelled a Seralini paper.

A click on the link did not disappoint-- it's Seralini again.  I was electronically whisked to a PDF of the whole text and began to read.  Within minutes I was blown away by the lack of rigor, poor experimental design, attention to controls and loose statistics.  Most of all, I was blown away by the conclusions drawn by a study with tiny numbers of subjects in a rat line known to grow endochrine tumors.

The anti-GMO interests were quick to anoint this new work as a rigorous pillar of exceptional science, a hard-science detailing of the danger of transgenic food.  They want this to influence public policy.

I was really impressed by how the scientific media and the science blogosphere pounced.  The best names in the business, Terwavas, Leyser, Goldberg and many others were interviewed and provided detailed analysis of the work, pointing out its many flaws.  Those reviews can be foundthroughout the internet, and they are awesome. Like this one! I don’t need to reiterate them here.

What I will do, which is highly uncharacteristic and but consistent with the post hoc analysis done all the time, is provide a level of analysis that was not explored.  There are features of this paper that hint at a motive, an intent.  I do not believe this was a hypothesis tested.  I believe that this was an experiment designed to frighten.  I believe that this is blatant mis-use of science to forward an agenda.

Those are strong words and I never thought I’d cast such allegations at someone else’s peer-reviewed research.  That’s usually pretty low.  However, there are facets of this work that are clearly indicate the intent of the authors is to provide shock, not a good test of a hypothesis.  In fact, the word “hypothesis” does not appear once.  

This is why the report is in Food and Chemical Toxicology and not in Nature, where it would be if it was a properly conducted study.

Here are some red flags the others have not mentioned.  I’m reading between the lines here. I will describe what a good scientific report should not do and then give you some strong inferences from what the paper does not show, as well as how data are presented.

1. The first line of the paper claims an “international debate”, yet he cites himself and nobody else.  Easy to claim a debate when nobody else is participating in it.

2.  Figure 3.  This one really makes me see red.  Look at tumors.  Look at massively deformed rats.  Shocking, isn’t it?   The authors tell us in Table 2 that control rats also develop tumors.  Why not show them?  Why are the controls not shown in that figure?  It is because if they are identical to the experimental treatment rats then the fear factor is gone.   This is inexcusable and the authors, reviewers and editors should be ashamed.

Sometimes the way data are presented can expose the relative objectivity and hidden intent of a study. Left-rat that ate GMO corn.  Center- rat eating GMO corn and roundup. Right- rat fed roundup. Their associated tumors shown on the right. Wait!  What about the control rats, the ones that also got tumors?  How convenient to leave them out!   

3.  The labeling on the figure is “GMO” or “GMO+R” (R stands for Roundup).  GMO is not a product. It is not a genetic line of corn.  It is a technique.  There are many kinds of GMOs, plant lines bearing different transgenes.  Even if these results linked rat tumors to the food (which they don’t in my assessment) they would  link it to one kind of transgenic crop, not any transgenic crop.  This again shows the authors’ intent to overstep the data in a manner that will inflame the reader and further vilify a technology. To be fair, they do state it properly in the conclusion, but few are reading past the sensational photos.

4.  They show comparable effects of Roundup treatment and the transgene.  This should be a tip-off as well.  What is the likelihood of both inducing identical problems?

5.  Low numbers of subjects are a sign of poor design.  When tumor incidence is 30%, vs 50% or 70% that means three rats vs. five or seven.  The incidence of endocrine tumors in Sprague-Dawley rats is 70-80%.  Imagine you roll a die and numbers 1-4 mean develop tumors, 5 and 6 mean tumor free.  Now roll it ten times and log the result.  You’ll find that there will be times when you consistently roll 5 or 6, maybe 5 times out of ten.  Other times you’ll roll 5 or 6 only 2 times out of ten.  That’s natural random variation, and if you roll it 100 times, 1000 times, then the real probabilities will even out. 

6.  Low numbers + a line known to get tumors = some frequency of data that will prove the authors’ beliefs.

7.  A prediction-- the larger study will never be done and these results will not replicated by other labs.

8.  The Discussion.  Lots of guesses on how to link the food or Roundup to the symptoms. Quite a bit of speculation and hand waving, with no likely mechanisms discussed.

I could go on all day. For fun reading review the press conference. It was a bigger joke.  

The bottom line is that if we look at the report and what it says, and compare it to what the data really say, there is limited concordance.  To the trained eye the data say that these rats get endocrine tumors at high incidence and that what is being observed is the natural variation of the tumors in small numbers of rats, where the authors'  “significance” is found in statistically meaningless samples.

Alas, it is now part of the true-believers' war chest of crap information that now will be used to steer the unsophisticated and influence public policy.