I have argued with a few people at length about this question of cancer rates. Good guy progressives, including a molecular biologist P.H.D, all of federal faith, I found them clinging to FDA assertions of safe exposure levels.
I had to tell even the 34 year old doctor 3 times before it registered, the point about all these safety assertions being more or less hypothetical due to the fact that many of these "safe at X PPM chemicals" are "probable insidious poisons" because these chemicals are tested for some measurable effect individually, and then in virtually all non-laboratory applications, immune systems are interacting with cocktails of not one novel environmentally introduced mutagen, but hundreds of them, and that in combination they interact and change the way the immune system can handle them. The analytical study of biology and health with regard to immune system interactions is a ways up shit creek without a paddle, due to the complexity of the system.
As far as trying to get something like "true cancer rates" over the past century or more, like with a scientifically rigorous statistics and measure....I don't think they exist. Tracking this over the course of many decades is statistical speculation, because there is no solid measure of two critical unknowns which were mentioned here;
The first unknown being that, as life expectancy increases due to declining deaths by infectious disease and violence and young deaths etc, deaths due to old age and degenerative disease (and cancer) will increase. Getting some value for this adjustment has hardly been attempted, because you could spend a huge amount of research energy and you would come up with an educated guess at best. Like, first adjust for the deaths by lung and stomach cancers plummeting over the past century, which was primarily caused by a decline in smoking and drinking and salted meat-eating habits in that period. Ummm, so how might that change of habits effect the rates of these other cancers which were increasing over that period? That's one of probably a few dozen adjustments you'd need in order to get some idea of precisely how much more cancer you should expect as a result of people tending to live a few decades longer over this period. The accuracy of each one of these adjustments which you could sic a team of statistical researchers on is not something you can theoretically test, as these are not phenomena you can recreate in a lab, and nobody has all the data.
Then add the 2nd unknown, the rate of diagnosis of cancer.
When the rate of cancer is changing due to changes in life expectancy, and you compound this with the further unknown of the rate of cancer diagnosis, you've got a statistical clusterf#$%; value unknown, cannot reproduce in a lab to test any hypothesis, nobody has all the necessary data, all is speculation.
I accepted this at the P.H.D's behest, and he finally accepted that nobody has much of a clue as to what they are talking about with regard to the long term safety of "metagenic cocktails" the modern environment is commonly flooded with. He also kept repeating those two talking points, that cancer rates were only increasing because people were living longer, and the rate of diagnosis changes.
He kept repeating those points, because if the cancer rate is increasing due to environmental changes, it then contradicts his assertion of the "primarily baseline genetic chaos" cause of cancer. He clings to this explanation probably because he works in a genetics lab studying neurological disorders, where they are also "proving" the "primarily baseline genetic chaos" cause of neurological disorders (ASD and others.) I came up with an idea in arguing with him, that mutagens can and do act on gametes, thus the mutations are in like every cell of the resulting fetus, and should said fetus survive to make babies, these mutations induced by environmentally introduced mutagens (what a mouthful...) are fully heritable, thus the "Autism Twin's Study" he pointed to as "proof of genetic cause due to inheritance" does not actually prove a genetic cause.
Even though he then accepted that the Twins study doesn't necessarily prove anything with regard to concept, he still does not think it's likely that the mutations they are tracking are the result heritable, environmentally-introduced mutagenic activity. I do not understand the reasons he gives as the basis for this thinking. It seems this debate is stuck in a "chicken or the egg argument" for lack of data...
Another trap, modern progressive chemical defenders will use the falling rates of "deaths by cancer" as a way to show that the cancer rate is not increasing. You'll probably have to point out that "Deaths by cancer" have been decreasing in recent decades due to changing treatment success, but that the "rate of cancer malignant or benign" is not so decreasing.
I finally got this weasel PHD and his oh-so scientifically righteous cohorts to second guess their cancer-rate thinking with the following bits and pieces;
The first step was the question, would you say there is probably no significant change in the rate of diagnosis of cancers from 2017 to 2018?
To which they agreed.
(Not all that relevant to ongoing cancer talk, but note how the WP goes on about suicide and opioid overdose, and how these things are contributing to about 40/100,000 deaths. Case closed! LOL)
So I think the US census places population, 2018 to 2017 ratio (327,167,434/325,719,178) gives ~0.4% increase
reported cases of cancer 2018 to 2017 ratio (1,735,350/1,685,210) gives ~2.9% increase
This happened in a year where the life expectancy of both sexes decreased by about a tenth of a year for the second year in a row.
To wit, I asked them "how many years can that happen before you'll give up this idea that "cancer rates are increasing because life expectancy is increasing" as nonsense wishful thinking?
Mr. Scientist's response was:
I don't know
not many lol
That's the report, maybe you'll find it useful