[ RadSafe ] Re: Radiation Hormesis

John Jacobus crispy_bird at yahoo.com
Sun Dec 30 13:46:25 CST 2007

No, it does not have to all or nothing, and that is the point.  Ours is a nation of laws, some of which may or not like.  Nevertheless, our society functions.  It is easy and "fun" to take shots at regulators, but they are performing a government duty that was given to them by Congress and the Administration.   If you feel overburden, then maybe you should seek employment elsewhere.  
  (I think it is interesting that some of the comments indicate that much of the problems began in the 1970s during the Nixon administration and his attempt to establish an all-powerful Executive Branch.)
  "The Jungle" may be a work of fiction, but it is based on fact.  The fact that Upton Sinclair was a socialist http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Upton_Sinclair  has nothing to do with the facts that these conditions existed.  Of course, maybe citing that he and Spargo http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Spargo are socialist is to divert attention from the fact that what they fought for has made us a better society.  (It is a common tactic to give a person a label, e.g., liberal, to disparage the person making the argument.  It reduces the amount of thinking required.)
  Obviously, issues such as child labor and unsafe drugs are old issues.  But are there new issues.  TryNickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America by Barbara Ehrenreich.  Consider the current mortgage issues, one of the points of this book is that housing and not food is a significant problem for the working poor.  Maybe we need a really good muckraker (socialist or not) to throw some light on the awarding of no-bid contracts the the Defense Department handed out.  I think many have become too complacent and wrapped in our own lifestyle to see how some of our fellow Americans are doing.
  I am a firm believer in reading history.  However, history does not repeat itself, historians do.  Rather, history lays out the existing conditions of the times, and the consequences of the choices made.
  Back to your question, even though the subject line does not indicate it as such.  Animal testing has certain flaws, but it has its place in medicine http://whyfiles.org/064angio_cancer/3.html  and scientific research,  and certainly has a long history. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Animal_testing#History  However, one of the biggest corundum is how to effectively evaluate cancer risks in humans, not animals.  Some suggestions included the use of biological markers to identify alterations in cell cultures, but it think that this avoids the use of animal and may not be an effective means to evaluate risks to humans.  With regard to regulations of risk, efforts such as the Delaney Clause http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Delaney_clause was one attempt to bring science into the regulatory process.  In this case, it was more than a regulation factor as the DeLaney Clause was a legislatively law, that only can be changed by legislation. (Am I right Syd?).
  I would also like to point out the radiation exposure regulations are NO based on animal studies.  Current regulations are based on the Hiroshima and Nagasaki studies.  

Steven Dapra <sjd at swcp.com> wrote:
  Dec. 28

        Does it have to be all or nothing?  All but anarchists will acknowledge the need for some government.  The debate should be about the amount we need.  My guess is that we could easily get by with a lot less than we have now.  It doesn't have to be Federal either.  State governments should be regulating most of this stuff, not the Feds.

        I have read "The Jungle," thank you, and although it may have some basis in fact, it is a work of fiction.  "The Jungle" initially appeared in serial form in a socialist journal.  Upton Sinclair, its author was a socialist, and was a founder of the Intercollegiate Socialist Society, later known as the League for Industrial Democracy.  Until you mentioned it, I had not heard of "The Bitter Cry of [the] Children."  According to the Univ. of NM's online library catalog, it is about child welfare and child labor, the author is John Spargo, and the title takes the definite article.  According to Wikipedia (yes, I know about Wikipedia's shortcomings) Spargo was a British socialist; and, like Sinclair, Spargo was a muckraker.  He came to the United States in 1901, became a leader in the Socialist Party of America, and wrote an early English-language biography of Karl Marx.  According to Wikipedia he became "wealthy" off his books.  That's a good one --- a wealthy
 Socialist.  And so it goes.  Oddly enough, Spargo opposed the New Deal.  Why are you using 100 year old books by Socialist muckrakers to make points about what is happening today in the US of A?  

        By looking on Amazon.com, I found that Markku Ruotsila, an Adjunct Professor of American and British History at the University of Tampere, Finland, has written a biography of Spargo (John Spargo and American Socialism).  According to a brief description of the book on Amazon, Spargo was "a key popularizer of evolutionary socialism in the Socialist Party of America in the early twentieth century."  Also, says the description, he was "one of the earliest forerunners of neoconservatism."  (That's what it says.)

        As I pointed out in another posting in this thread, appealing a regulatory decision is expensive and exhausting.  Furthermore your polemic has nothing to do with whether or not a substance that causes cancer in animals will also cause cancer in humans.

Steven Dapra

At 05:55 PM 12/28/07 -0800, John Jacobus wrote:
  Yes, there are certainly problems with over-regulation.  Consider how much better it would be if there were no drug regulations, or drinking water standards, or regulations on aircraft safety, etc.  Think of all those jackass regulators who would have nothing to do, and how much better a society we would be. If you wanted to dump oil into the ground, go for it.  You don't have to worry about who drinks it.  What would be great is to eliminate things like fire codes and child labor laws.  We could certainly eliminate labor costs of manufacturing
. . .

"If history teaches any lesson it is that no nation has an inherent right to greatness.  Greatness has to be earned and continually re-earned."
- Norman Augustine, Chairman of the National Academies Committee 

-- John
John Jacobus, MS
Certified Health Physicist
e-mail:  crispy_bird at yahoo.com
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