Sorted by New

Wiki Contributions


Just couldn't let this bit go without comment:

"According to this source, the FDA's longer approval process prevents 5,000 casualties per year by screening off medications found to be harmful, and causes at least 20,000-120,000 casualties per year just by delaying approval of those beneficial medications that are still developed and eventually approved."

I haven't examined the source or the methodology by which they can come up with these numbers, but it seems to me that an entire category is missing: the number of 'casualties' per year prevented by having a regulatory process at all. How many quacks and scam artists don't bother to bring snake oil medications to market because they know they can't possibly make it through the regulatory process?

Without the regulatory process, how does the average patient/consumer (or doctor/administrator) tell what is effective and what isn't and what sort of side effects things have, etc? (And this is hardly just a problem of medications, either. I need to put my money into some sort of retirement account - how do I know who is telling the truth about their products without becoming an accountant/broker/economist myself?) It's not that technologies are good or bad - it's that people are good and/or bad.

I suppose that with the above statement I've fallen into your 'Deep Wisdom' bogeyman category, but that's another thing I don't understand about your reasoning: you note that technology does, in fact, have both risks and benefits. And then you assert that the proper stance towards anyone who notes such a fact is mistrust? Should people lie about either the risks or the benefits instead? Would that make them more worthy of trust? Really, if the scientists/engineers aren't telling you about the risks of their technologies, then they shouldn't be calling themselves scientists.