We were among the first to bring you the full text of the leaked minutes of the secret meeting of the bisphenol-A (BPA) cabal at a posh private club in Washington, DC on May 28. It turns out those minutes may be almost as toxic to the cabal as their endocrine disrupting chemical is to humans. I guess I am exaggerating. It would have to pretty toxic for that. But it is at least producing some unpleasant fall out (see also here). You may remember one element (besides describing as the "holy grail" finding a “pregnant young mother who would be willing to speak around the country about the benefits of BPA”) was the plan to put pressure on legislators in two key states considering BPA bans, California and Connecticut. This got the attention of the Connecticut Attorney General (h/t DO):
The chemical industry used "confusion and concealment" and possibly violated Connecticut law in its unsuccessful attempt to kill legislation banning the use of bisphenol-A in baby bottles and infant food jars, Attorney General Richard Blumenthal charged Monday.
Blumenthal, during a news conference with legislators and environmental and public-health activists, said he was concerned by an apparent strategy that was developed during a meeting of packagers and chemical lobbyists in Washington early this year.
Misleading consumers, he said, is a violation of state law. (Ken Dixon, Connecticut Post)
Several Connecticut legislators confirmed they were the targets of the lobbying effort. One said she felt she had been minisnformed about the risks and told that a bill banning BPA could affect the WIC program (WIC is the federal Women, Infants and Children program that provides money to states for nutrition and health for low income pregnant, breastfeeding, and non-breastfeeding postpartum women, and to infants and children up to age five who are found to be at nutritional risk). Connecticut records show that tens of thousands of dollars were paid to lobbyists from the largest members of the chemical industry through their trade group the American Chemistry Council and by the Grocery Manufacturers' Association, the infant formula companies, the Can Manufacturers' Institute and a variety of other industry groups including soft drink manufacturers whose soda cans are lined with a BPA-containing sealant.
This kind of stuff has gone on for decades but now we are seeing it. But I had to laugh to see the Attorney General saying misleading consumers is violation of state law. Next thing you know, I'll find out the Kinoki Foot Pads I bought to rid my body of toxins like BPA violate the law. Imagine!
Excellent work keeping us informed on the dangers of BPA and the lengths to which food and beverage companies will go to continue its unbridled use. BPA needs to be eliminated from our food supply, and eliminated immediately.
On another topic: You promote Universal Health Care. Just now I stumbled across Susie Madrak's "Crooks and Liars" blog post from yesterday, 6-17-09, (http://crooksandliars.com/susie-madrak/insurers-tell), in which she details insurance executives who testified before congress that their companies will continue the practice of "rescission" in which coverage for illness is denied *after* the illness has been diagnosed.
According to Madrak, more than 20,000 policy holders in good standing have already had their coverage terminated *after* they got sick, and that disease -- breast cancer, lymphoma, and others -- not the policy holder, is the reason for the rescission.
This is reprehensible! Even folks WITH insurance are being denied medical benefits! If this continues, we'll all be required to buy overpriced health insurance, no one will be entitled to decent medical care, and the only ones to benefit will be insurance execs.
"Former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle said on Wednesday that the Obama White House would likely have to scrap a public option for health insurance coverage if it wanted to get the votes needed to pass systematic change.
"We've come too far and gained too much momentum for our efforts to fail over disagreement on one single issue," the Senator and one-time HHS Secretary nominee said, according to ABC News."
Could someone tell me exactly what we have "gained" given the statements of these industry captains. Just one single issue//do we get health care or do we not?
"violate the law" link is busted.
Correct link for