Sunday, December 02, 2007

Breaking the back of the public trust

Carolyn Baker has this article from the New York Times (free registration) about the disorganization and lack of funding for the Food and Drug Administration whose task is to ensure that our food won't make people sick and our medicinal drugs will help and not kill people.

The end of the article states:

Garret A. FitzGerald, a pharmacologist from the University of Pennsylvania and adviser to the authors, said the report was raising an alarm because “this is a crisis.” Dr. FitzGerald pointed to a series of food and drug scares that have demonstrated how little oversight the F.D.A. provides.

He blamed a “cabal of Congressional majorities and presidential administrations that has serially stripped the agency of assets.”

I am left wondering to what purpose this really serves. It does not seem that profit is the sole objective. There is something else, something deeper at work here. Something that feels like it is designed to break the backs of the people's spirit in a sadistic abuse of power.

There are many periods in history where the government or the people within it or even the king/emperor himself is seen as evil and have given rise to many stories in literature and film depicting it. Robin Hood is a classic case. As there are so many such stories it is clear that people do know the difference between good and bad government.

Unfortunately, when the problems are as systemic as they are it would seem that people must realize they are on their own and must do for themselves all they can at the local level.

The government is the betrayer of the public trust. As such, they are owed no allegiance.