Friday, July 25, 2008

Unintended (but utterly predictable) consequences

Okay, all you "big business can do no wrong" types out there: What part of "this was so predictable" and "there's such a thing as a false economy" don't you understand?

WASHINGTON - One of the worst outbreaks of foodborne illness in the U.S. is teaching the food industry the truth of the adage, "Be careful what you wish for
because you might get it."

The industry pressured the Bush administration years ago to limit the paperwork companies would have to keep to help U.S. health investigators quickly trace produce that sickens consumers, according to interviews and government reports reviewed by The Associated Press.

The White House also killed a plan to require the industry to maintain electronic tracking records that could be reviewed easily during a crisis to search for an outbreak's source. Companies complained the proposals were too burdensome and costly, and warned they could disrupt the availability of consumers' favorite foods.

The apparent but unintended consequences of the lobbying success: a paper record-keeping system that has slowed investigators, with estimated business losses of $250 million. So far, nearly 1,300 people in 43 states, the District of Columbia and Canada have been sickened by salmonella since April.

Listen up, Republicans (all you who think government regulation is the bogeyman): Are you satisfied now??????

1 comment:

  1. And to that list add that under the Bush administration, the USDA is not required to test all cattle for BSE (mad cow disease) nor are they required to inform the public when and where tainted meat/animals are found to protect those selling the cattle. Congress banned the feeding of dead cows to feedlot cows in 1997 and apparently the Bush administration feels that this is enough of a precaution to prevent BSE spreading. BUT it's legal to feed those cows to feedlot chickens and in turn feed the chicken poo back to the cows.

    What's it going to take to change things?


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