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OpenMarket: Consumer Product Safety

  • FDA Created the Youth Vaping Epidemic, Now It’s Doubling Down

    April 15, 2019
    E-cigarettes pose less risk than smoking. The science is clear: while cigarettes kill about half their users, e-cigarettes have perhaps five percent of the risk. Therefore, e-cigarettes have the ability to save the lives of those smokers who switch to vaping. Yet, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is trying to eradicate e-cigarettes, a move that would sacrifice smoker lives and squander one of the greatest public health opportunities of our generation.
  • FDA's Fake E-cigarette News

    April 4, 2019
    Journalists aren’t the only purveyors of “fake news.” Federal agencies also generate misleading headlines. Sometimes, they do it with a purpose. That seems to be the case with the Food and Drug Administration’s recent press release warning the public about a possible link between e-cigarettes and seizures.
  • Help Wanted: Seeking Commissioner for Food and Drug Administration

    April 1, 2019
    In a tidal wave of Washington drama, President Trump’s Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Scott Gottlieb abruptly and unexpectedly announced in March 2019 that he would be resigning. His reasons remain a source of mystery and speculation, but that means there’s a huge opportunity now to get a replacement who does better at adhering to the principles of FDA’s mission and improving the effectiveness of FDA policy across all programs.
  • Maryland's Nanny State Targets Foam Cups and Containers

    March 19, 2019
    Maryland consumers may soon be deprived of one of my favorite products: plastic foam coffee cups. The Maryland House of Delegates has already passed a bill that would ban all containers made with polystyrene foam, which—if eventually signed by Gov. Larry Hogan—would be the first statewide foam container ban. But that move will likely do more environmental harm than good, despite claims to the contrary.
  • E-Cigarette Puritans Risk Lives

    March 7, 2019
    Tobacco companies faced a savage backlash in the 1990s when the public realized they willfully misled the world about the dangers of smoking. Yet when leaders of the modern medical establishment employ the same tactics to deceive the public about the risks of e-cigarettes, they face few, if any, repercussions.
  • Agenda for the 116th Congress: Consumer Freedom

    January 15, 2019
    The second-to-last chapter in the Competitive Enterprise Institute’s agenda for the 116th Congress focuses on consumer freedom. Specifically, the chapter recommends ways Congress can rein in federal agencies from infringing on adults’ right to decide how they spend their money and what they put in their own bodies.
  • 5 Myths about E-cigarettes and Public Health

    December 13, 2018
    My colleague Michelle Minton recently released an excellent new study on the health impact of e-cigarettes and why some people are misrepresenting the risks involved (watch Michelle’s interview with Reason TV’s John Stossel on the topic here). The full study, complete with all of the details and end notes, is 100 pages long, however, so for readers looking for the short version, we’ve prepared a blog summary and the infographic below.
  • Conflict of Interest over Vaping Threatens Public Health

    December 5, 2018
    Cigarette smoking kills nearly half a million Americans every year, and for every person who dies due to smoking, at least 30 people live with a serious smoking-related illness, according to the Centers for Disease Control. The rise of a vibrant market for e-cigarettes in recent years has been a blessing for public health because many longtime smokers have been able to reduce health risks associated with smoking or even quit their life-threatening habit entirely after switching to vapor products. Research suggests vaping poses just 1 to 5 percent of the health risk posed by combustible cigarettes.
  • Reason's John Stossel Interviews Michelle Minton on the E-Cigarette Scare

    November 20, 2018
    The FDA recently announced new regulations restricting the sale of e-cigarettes, supposedly to protect young people from harms associated with nicotine. However, as CEI Senior Fellow Michelle Minton, author of an upcoming CEI study on the topic, notes, “Rather than keeping adolescents away from nicotine, the FDA’s new rules will likely push adolescents to acquire e-cigarettes through illicit channels or simply use combustible cigarettes.”
  • Senate Should Move Forward with Confirmation Votes on Buerkle, Others

    November 13, 2018
    With the 2018 election behind us, it’s time to look for opportunities to advance freedom and economic well-being. I don't expect much to happen congressionally given the divided chambers, but that does not mean policy changes can’t happen administratively within federal agencies and departments.

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