Science in the Courts

Category archives for Science in the Courts

Man Bites Dog? Corporations Ask for Regulation

By David Michaels Updated Below The lead story in today’s New York Times reports something we’ve been writing about here at the Pump Handle for quite some time (here and here and here, for example): responsible corporations recognize the need for public health and environmental regulation. In industry and after industry, corporations and trade associations…

By David Michaels It is time for Congress to enlist the nation’s science and policy experts to help develop a federal workers’ compensation program for 9/11 rescue, recovery, and cleanup workers. The inadequacy of state worker programs led Congress to legislate special compensation programs for uranium miners, and civilian workers in nuclear weapons facilities. We…

By David Michaels Tort “reformers” have long contended (with little evidence) that fear of litigation has scared off vaccine manufacturers from developing new vaccines. It has been more than twenty years since Congress established the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program. The program was designed to ensure that anyone injured by a vaccine would be fairly…

By David Michaels Gretchen Morgenson, the terrific New York Times reporter, has a disturbing piece that describes how the toothless Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) has little ability to force hazardous consumer products of the shelves of toy stores. The focus of her report is on super powerful miniature toy magnets. They are candy colored…

By David Michaels We’ve been writing for the past few months about U.S. regulatory agencies’ failure to take meaningful action on diacetyl, a toxic component of artificial butter flavor, despite having been aware of its risks since at least the start of this decade. Now, mounting evidence suggests that some flavor manufacturers have known about…

Nature Calls to End Court Ordered Secrecy

By David Michaels An editorial in the latest issue of Nature takes up a problem that public health advocates have been battling for years: confidentiality orders that keep important scientific data hidden from the public, scientists, and even regulatory agencies. One recent case of such data being kept secret, which Nature reporter Jim Giles covers…

A few hours ago, the Supreme Court ruled in Massachusetts vs. EPA that EPA has the authority to regulate carbon dioxide from auto emissions. (For background on the case, see this post.) David Stout of the New York Times summarizes:

By David Michaels Dr. David Healy is the probably the single person most responsible for identifying the link between anti-depression drugs like Zoloft and suicide risk. His work led to the FDA to require the addition of a “black box” to the label of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), warning of the increased risk for…

By David Michaels The state of Pennsylvania has filed lawsuits against three drug manufacturers, claiming the firms fraudulently marketed antipsychotic drugs. According to Bloomberg News, the state alleges that Eli Lilly & Co. “hid the risks and exaggerated the benefits of its antipsychotic medication Zyprexa while persuading doctors to prescribe it for unapproved uses.” AstraZeneca…