Policy & Ethics

Different people respond to cannabis in different ways, making a blood THC level difficult to legislate.
How do we decide which species to favor and which to spurn? The law protects dwindling populations of snail darters, but does it apply to nature's creatures that we consider pests, like weeds, or flesh-eating bacteria.
The FDA is supposed to regulate absence claims. But when it comes to GMO absence claims, the FDA has done absolutely nothing. That may be about to change.
California is a trendsetter. It’s home to world-class wine, championship basketball teams, beautiful weather and legendary cities like San Francisco. But sadly, it's also a trendsetter when it comes to wrongheaded public health policy. There’s no better example of this than Proposition 65, a law that as of 2016 has cost California businesses close to $300 million.
While there's no formula to determine the "correct answer" for public health policy, there are guidelines that can at least point policymakers in the right direction. Ultimately, what separates good public health policy from bad public health policy is a satisfactory response to three essential questions.
Dr. Kolodny (1) has a long history of spreading misinformation about the opioid crisis; (2) insults chronic pain patients; (3) profits handsomely from doing so; and (4) calls everyone who disagrees with him an industry shill. The good doctor's version of compassion actually comes with poor bedside manner and a hefty price tag.
Physicians from across the political spectrum and the country, representing nearly every specialty, came to Washington, DC last week. They did so to advocate for patients, spotlighting many hidden ways healthcare dollars are wasted.
Here are two reports about bribery and health-care enterprises. Greasing the wheels of government with cash is another contributor to high medical costs.
It was about two years ago that this northeastern city imposed a tax on sugary beverages to raise revenue and hopefully help improve the health of its residents. Of course, in terms of health, there have been no reports as to whether it made a difference. But there were some surprises, at least for the policymakers.
The self-proclaimed expert on opioids and addiction "agreed" to sit down with me and answer some tough questions about his background, medical insight and plans for the future. (Keep in mind that this "interview" took place on April 1.)
U.S. Senator Kristin Gillibrand (D-NY) has officially announced her plans to run for president in 2020. Part of her platform is women's health. Yet, her recently announced (and totally misguided) plans for "solving" the "opioid crisis" will disproportionately hurt women, an irony that Gillibrand obviously missed.
Michael Balter a sort-of-journalist, admitted socialist, and all around do-gooder has been attacking us for years. He really doesn't like us, nor does he care all that much for other science-based groups, which he calls "industry front groups and other paid stooges." We have feelings too, so I decided to engage Balter and see if we can't get past this animus. It went pretty well.