Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Old Story that Casts Insight Into How Government 'Accidentally' Colludes With Industry

Majia here: I was searching my files and I happened to see this article I had saved from 2008.

The article illustrates the corruption that occurs with our regulatory agency through outsourcing.

NIH Drops Contractor For Conflict of Interest
By Lyndsey Layton
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, April 14, 2007; A08

[Excerpted] The federal government yesterday fired a contractor it had hired to review the safety of chemicals after discovering the company has been simultaneously working for the chemical industry.

Alexandria-based Sciences International was in the fourth year of a $5 million, five-year contract to run the federal Center for the Evaluation of Risks to Human Reproduction. It has reviewed 20 chemicals to date, helping the government determine whether they pose dangers to reproduction and newborn babies.

At the same time it has been advising the federal government, Sciences International has been on the payroll of Dow Chemical, BASF, 3M and other companies that produce some of the chemicals under scrutiny. [end]

Majia here: How did this overt CONFLICT OF INTEREST by the contractor come to light?

Environmental Working Group (EWG) had raised a complaint because Science International was reviewing bisphenol A.

EWG documented that Dow Chemical and BASF (companies that manufacture bisphenol A) have been Science International's clients.

What a CONFLICT of INTEREST: Government pays Science International to assess risk. Simultaneously, Dow and BASF pay Science International to hedge risks.

Science International, Dow, and & BASF all get rich while the public gets POISONED.

Present day relevance?

Well, obviously this kind of conflict is ENDEMIC and has been documented and explained thoroughly, especially by James Galbraith. See his discussion in Mother Jones about the 'Predator State' here.

One has to wonder whether this kind of predatory relationship between industry and radiation monitoring exists with Radnet, which is the privately run (i.e., "outsourced") EPA radiation-monitoring program. What companies and individuals own Radnet holdings?

And what about Gina McCarthy, the former assistant administrator for air and radiation who oversaw Radnet during the Fukushima fallout in 2011?

The EPA Office of Inspector General found Radnet failed in its surveillance of Fukushima fallout in the US. See the report here.

How in the wake of this gigantic failure could Gina McCarthy become the candidate for running the entire EPA?

One has to wonder whether her incompetence was by design? 

A suspicious read seems especially warranted given that Gina McCarthy was the architect of insanely high new Protective Action Guidelines for radiation levels in food and water in the wake of radiological emergencies (see Caldicott here.)

Whose interests is Gina McCarthy representing?

Sadly, government has been corrupted by the market, whether accidentally or by design, and is not able to register and respond to the crisis of human health that is occurring as a result of destruction of our biosphere.


  1. The relaxation of the PAGs into nothingness shows that not only the government is going to do nothing about Fukushima radiation, but shows it will do nothing about all nuclear polluters who will see this action as a carte blanche to dump radioactive poison in the American environment in any way possible.

    And other more conventional polluters will not miss the significance of this either.

  2. I completely agree Bobby1

    It is very depressing.

    Do you think the new guidelines were devised to reflect current levels of radioisotopes in our food and water?


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