Tuesday, November 15, 2005
See the highlights of a new GAO report: http://www.gao.gov/highlights/d06109high.pdf, and accompanying story (see below) making it abundantly clear that the administration clearly overstepped its bounds to trump science with ideology for its own political purposes, or that of its base, I suppose, in the FDA's "decision" to withhold approval of over the counter sales of Plan B (a/k/a the "morning after pill"). For those who take the absolutist pro-life stance and relativize Plan B to an actual abortion procedure, that is their fight and I respect their position. However, their is neither public support nor mandate for the rest of this country to similarly cut of its nose to spite it's face, "In December 2003, FDA's scientific advisers overwhelmingly backed over-the-counter sales for all ages, citing assessments that easier access could halve the nation's 3 million annual unintended pregnancies." In other words, this is a drug that can all but eliminate the need for abortion procedures if used properly and with proper information--a proposition that undoubtedly would garner an overwhelming majority of support from Dems and Reps alike; the problem is that the woman not being able to get a prescription in time makes it all but useless--a fact not overlooked by those who orchestrated FDA's inaction. This is not a decision about whether "life" is a 72-hour old embryo or 4-month old fetus, whereas the FDA was neither asked nor is it authorized to make that judgement, but rather an instance, as is made clear by the GAO report of the administration abusing its power (at one point carefully referred to as "the [u]nusual involvement from high-ranking agency officials") by force-feeding the ideology of its base to the public at large. It's one thing for a "conservative" administration to use wholly legal means of seeking to regulate the personal lives of Americans to conform with it's chosen values, but this is something entirely different. Then again, it would be unpatriotic for to question their integrity...