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February 16, 2009

Bad Medicine

Pills We ignore national security at our peril. According to a New York Times/International Herald Tribune article, we have "outsourced"--to the nth degree--manufacturing of crucial drugs to other nations, especially China and India. 

Part of the reason the manufacturing has been sent to other nations is because of all the taxes and unnecessary environmental regulations we've placed upon producers here.  

Seems to me that we'd go a long way toward securing our nation and generating jobs in America if we jettisoned some of the punishing taxes our big government places on manufacturer and eliminate all the nonsensical and costly reregulations. (Heck, getting rid of bad law will generate a few extra jobs too.)

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Hmm, nonsensical regulations like checking peanut products for salmonella, perhaps? Or nonsensical regulations for oversight of the banking or mortgage industries? Or for airline safety? How many "nonsensical" regulations are you willing to pitch at the risk your kids' lives? And oh, yeah, what if any is the theological relationship between deregulation and Christianity? Posts like this reinforce the image of the Point being just another GOP-mouthpiece.


Andy wrote: "Hmm, nonsensical regulations like checking peanut products for salmonella, perhaps?"

Yes - look at how well the existing ones have protected us! (sarcasm OFF)

So by regulating businesses out of the USA, we put our kids' lives in the hands of countries like China where we have no say in the creation or enforcement of the regulations. Brilliant.

And I can't speak for Kim, but I feel that theologically the climate of regulation is due to a correct recognition that men are sinners and will cut corners if they can, but an incorrect belief that human-created and human-enforced regulations can keep us from harm.

And not all Point bloggers support the GOP - much less the commenters.

On the other hand, Andy, I don't want to sound like I'm being nasty toward you. Would you like half of my Snickers candy bar? We can wash it down with some Chinese milk. ;-)

Nathanael Snow

Who is the "we" and "our"?
Are you really concerned that China won't ship us pills for some reason?
Do you really believe the reason we manufacture less of these is the level of regulation you are talking about?
How about the entire FDA structure?
I say, let's be rid of it. Both the FDA and patents.
Let the buyer beware, and let his pay much less for it.
But national security? I don't buy the argument at all. The more Americans trade with internationals the less likely there are to be hostilities between the governments.
Free trade kills war.


Lee: The hands-off attitude of the Bush administration is the root cause of the salmonella outbreak, and the financial crisis.

Jason Taylor

The fashionability of criticizing the "Bush administration" leaves me unmoved by that comment about the salmonella outbreak and the financial crisis.

And given the nature of a real plague, or a real financial crisis, an American talking about it to much is really not particularly moving.

Added to that, that in a well organized modern western state, "financial crises" is a function of morale, not resources, or efficiency with handling same. In other words talking about "financial crises" is not necessariy conducive to healing it.

Rachel Coleman

All outsourcing is not due to overregulation; nor is it all a noble effort to make peace through free trade. Some of it is due to greed. Some of it is due to frustration.

Still, I would rather use medications manufactured in a country that regulates their production than those produced in a place that's still operating (in many ways) on a Communist model or one pocked with bribery and corruption. In either setting, individuals are less likely to care about the quality of their work or the end product.

That's not to say all U.S. manufacturing plants have got it right, as we see with the whole peanut problem. Still, how many peanut-processing factories ARE there, and what percentage of them are tainted with salmonella? There are more clean factories than dirty ones, and if there was no oversight, there'd be many more with bad product.

It is a sin problem and our efforts to "fix" it are like a parent's efforts to get a child to do what's right. Ultimately, it's an individual choice (on the child's part), but we all know overly permissive parents are going to get more trouble than they expected. Conversely, nit-picky parents who make rules about *everything* are probably not going to win willing compliance, either.


Lack of regulation cannot be the "root cause" of any of our problems. The lack of regulation may have allowed the root cause to play out to a degree unprecedented in our history, but it is the familiar, universal root cause: the fallen state of mankind. And the regulation failed for the same reason.

Our Christian worldview would serve us better looking forward rather than backward. What should you and I do today, in our own lives, to contribute to rebuilding... And what is it we ought to try to build?


Andy, the financial crisis was engineered during the Clinton administration and overseen by Barney Frank. Banks were forced by law to make bad loans so that the (good goal) of all owning their own homes could be met. When GOP people like McCain tried to regulate that area to prevent the coming economic collapse that has now happened (right in time for the elections) the Democrats always fought off those attempts at regulation. Blaming this on the GOP and not the Democrats is either ignorant or dishonest.


labrialumn wrote: "Blaming this on the GOP and not the Democrats is either ignorant or dishonest."

lab, old friend, surely you don't mean to leave Andy only those two choices with which to label himself. He's been a thoughtful (if sometimes passionate) member of the Loyal Opposition, so I'm sure we can give him the benefit of the doubt. And besides, he's hardly the only voice expressing the same opinion. Let's cut him some slack; we should have sympathy for those poor souls who are less enlightened than ourselves. ;-)

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