From the Atlantic
Some government decisions are legitimately political; others are not. For
example, politics should never play a role in the decision to approve or
disapprove drugs for human consumption. By law, such decisions are supposed
to be made solely on the basis of medical evidence that determines first
whether the drugs are safe, and second whether they are effective.
That’s no longer the case. The integrity of the nation’s drug-approval process
has been compromised by the Bush administration for crass political purposes,
another in a long line of cases in which it has ignored or distorted scientific
Oh now this reporter finds interference in the FDA to be political.
During the Clinton administration RU-486 was given fast-track approval. By
fast-track approval was to be used only for development of drugs to save lives,
like with cancer treatment medications. The only reason
it was given fast-track was to get the abortion pill approved prior
to President Clinton leaving office (another legacy).
We have long disapproved drugs for political reasons. Recreational
drug use has longed been banned under law. Regardless of how safe and effective
some hallucinogens, depressants, and amphetamines might be; a moral view
on their use came into play. An FDA that would approve any drug based on zero
moral concerns is not a government agency that protects the people. A suicide
pill could rapidly be developed that was effective and safety wouldn’t even
come into the picture (long term effect studies would not be necessary). If
a pill was developed that made people stronger and more violent and it effectively
did this and had no side-effect on the body would this reporter see this as
something that should be approved with zero political questions?
It is within the scope of government to not just look at the
science of something but at the moral consequence of it. Cloning, embryonic
stem-cell research, and other technologies all fall into areas that legitimately
should come under government oversight.