Friday, December 29, 2006

And people still complain that our government is not parental ENOUGH

Apparently some folks believe that our government is not sufficiently involved in making decisions for its citizens. Some folks might disagree, arguing that our government is, well, just slightly too involved in our day to day lives.

This is apropos of this. Wherein the NYT (again, or subscribe, yawn) reports that the FDA has preliminarily determined that meat and dairy products from cloned animals might possibly be safe for consumers. I have a lot to say about the FDA, which I might detail in later posts, but one thing I would never say about them is that they are not deliberate. They've apparently been ruminating on this issue for at least five years, and as noted, this is not a final decision, but a "draft" promulgated to invite comment and argument. In fact, it is a 700 page draft, with the formal policy not due to be released until the end of 2007 at the earliest.

And yet "consumer groups" are up in arms about this. Why? Well, they don't exactly say. They use the words "safety" and "health" and "consumer" a lot. But they have exactly ZERO evidence to present which would argue that products from cloned animals are not safe (or, indeed, exhibit any relevant difference whatsoever from products currently consumed by everyone).

One thing they do say is that "surveys show that most people are opposed to cloning animals, let along eating them." Ok: (1) opposed why? (2) no, I mean, really, WHY? are these survey participants qualified as doctors, researchers, scientists, veterinarians? or are they some idiot, at home on a weekday afternoon, answering a call that their caller ID has identified as unavailable, thinking for about 2 seconds, and going "oh, no, i don't think that's right!" and (3) has this country, bastion of FREEDOM for God's sake, devolved to such a point that I have to allow "survey participants" to decide what MOTHERFUCKING FOOD I CAN EAT???

The story also reports that there are approximately 500-600 cloned cows in existence at present. Since there are approximately 44 MILLION regular, non-cloned cows in the United States alone, my rudimentary math skills allow me to report that cloned cattle make up, at most, 0.014% of all U.S. cattle. The point being, it'll be awhile before we start seeing this stuff in our local supermarkets. Which gives the FDA and independent scientists time to research this even more.

But some people don't believe in science. Fine. The FDA certainly has the authority to force producers to provide consumers with labels stating that the products in question were produced by cloned animals.

In fact, certain dairies and meat producers are already considering (voluntarily!) labeling their products as "Clone Free!" Great. Let the market decide.

And if, as I predict, ten years from now you have to drive 30 miles to some out of the way specialty store to purchase your "Clone Free!" milk, then that's your business. The rest of us will happily enjoy our cheaper, higher quality cloned milk, available at your corner grocery.

1 comment:

Gleemonex said...

Wait, whaaat? There are 500-600 cloned cows already in existence?