September 15, 2013

Stanton A. Glantz, PhD

"Freedom to Harm" is a must-read for anyone who cares about protecting the public from big tobacco and their corporate buddies

Freedom to Harm: The Lasting Legacy of the Laissez Fare Revival, by Thomas O. McGaritya Professor of Administrative Law at the University of Texas at Austin School of Law., is a great overview of how the regulatory safety net has been shredded over the last 30 years as well as a shocking and detailed description of how little President Obama has acted to restore public health, occupational, and financial and consumer protections for the US population.  No wonder the FDA has done so little to control tobacco.

My only (minor) criticism of the book is that, while he mentions the tobacco industry, he does not fully develop the industry's behind-the-scenes role in a wide range of activities, including, among many other things, tort reform, the development of the Data Quality Act, the rise of "good epidemiology" and "junk science," and, of course, the Tea Party.

But everyone who cares about protecting the public should read this book.



"The "laissez faire" principles cited in this book are indeed causing severe harm, including the tobacco holocaust.  Here in Michigan, with some 15,000 deaths a year, I spoke in favor of enforcing Michigan's anti-cigarette law (MCL 750.27, MSA 28.216) in 1998.  Information on the law was then published statewide.  A woman being killed by tobacco read it, went to an attorney.  She (Corine Wendling) sued," target="_blank"; , then after tobacco had killed her, her estate continued the case.  But due to laissez faire 'tort reform,' even the fact of the cigarettes having been illegally sold her in violation of said law, was insufficient.  The court supported death and the tobacco lobby! Laissez faire and 'tort reform' indeed kill, they aid and abet killing.  In law, they are accessories, to be treated as indistinguishable from the principals in crime." -- Leroy Pletten  

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