September 8, 2009
On Saturday, The Times of London published a news article under the headline "Organic food is a waste of money". The hard-0copy print edition of Saturday's Times also purportedly featured two pages of price and quality comparisons showing that, in a blind tasting, an equal number of consumers preferred the taste of conventionally produced foods to that of organic foods.
September 2, 2009
A new study published in the journal Health Affairs calls into question claims by congressional Democrats and President Obama that mandatory coverage of preventive care services in public and private health insurance programs will lead to substantial cost savings. Although better preventive care can lower the costs associated with treating the complications of diabetes, that preventive care isn't free. Adding in the cost of the preventive services raises the overall cost of care.
August 20, 2009
Today, CEI filed comments on a draft FDA guidance document advising prescription drug manufacturers on how to comply with regulations requiring the presentation of risk information in drug and medical device advertisements. Although we disagree in principle with the current regulatory regime that requires almost encyclopedic presentation of risk information any time a manufacturer communicates the name of a drug and any mention of benefits in promotional materials, these comments focused on the FDA's failure to treat the Internet and other new media as unique forms of communication that permit advertisers to present complete risk and benefit information in novel ways.
August 3, 2009
Wall Street Journal columnist Gordon Crovitz has a great column in today's paper on the anachronism that is antitrust law. He writes: "Markets were so much simpler in the 1890s, when Sen. John Sherman got almost unanimous support in Congress to go after the Standard Oil Co. of Ohio. The Sherman Act and later antitrust laws were supposed to protect consumer interests. That’s not so easy when regulators have to deal with industries as different as oil, with its cartels and long product cycles, and technology, where fast change is a constant necessity for survival."
July 31, 2009
The irreverent and hilarious comedians Penn and Teller have produced another episode of their television show Bullshit about organic foods. Friends of CEI, Ron Bailey and Alex Avery, make appearances. The episode, titled “The Organicsons” blew the proverbial whistle on alleged “local-ness” or organics.
July 30, 2009
With all out attention diverted to the government's attempted takeover of the half of US health care that isn't already nationalized, the attempted destruction of our economy by crippling fossil fuel use, and the highly unstimulating stimulus plan, you could be forgiven for not noticing that Congress is also trying to re-formulate America's food safety regulations. The leading proposal is Rep. John Dingell's (D-Mich.) H.R. 2749, the Food Safety Enhancement Act of 2009. It's got plenty of support from both sides of the political aisle, and it likely will be passed into law before Thanksgiving, the most important food day of the years for Americans.
July 29, 2009
It seems that the food police at the unconscionably named Center for Science in the Public Interest are at it again. Last week, CSPI filed a class action lawsuit against the restaurant chain Denny's, claiming that, because most Denny's menu items contain a "high" level of sodium, the chain is engaging in consumer fraud and breaching the implied warranty of merchantability.
July 27, 2009
There was a good front page article in yesterday's Washington Post on the history of advances in medical science and technology. The conclusion: Although the costs of treating many serious medical conditions has risen dramatically over the course of the last few decades, most of these cost increases have come hand-in-hand with significant improvements in health outcomes.
July 23, 2009
White House health care policy advisor Ezekiel Emanuel has explicitly endorsed adopting not only comparative-effectiveness and cost-benefit analysis in the health care realm, but also the senior death discount. In an article in the Lancet on January 31, 2009, Emanuel advocated allocating health resources in order to maximize collective life years.
July 22, 2009
"Washingtonosis(n): a disease most often found in people working within three miles of the U.S. Capitol building in Washington, ... Those infected tend to lose judgment, values, principles and sense of honesty as well as common sense.