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As We See It

No Consumer Protection

July 2000

By William Faloon

To the Honorable ____________________
U.S. Senate
Washington, D.C. 20510

At a hearing of the Senate Health, Education and Pensions Committee, held on March 20, 2000, the FDA sought a ten million dollar annual appropriation beginning in Fiscal Year 2001 to police the Internet. I am vehemently opposed to my tax dollars being used to fund the FDA, an agency that I believe does not protect the public like it pretends to do.

In the FY 2001 budget proposal, the FDA is asking Congress to pass a new law that would give the agency repressive powers that would restrict the free flow of information on the Internet. I ask that you vote against any proposed law that gives the FDA more control over what I am allowed to read and put in my body. Some of the unconstitutional authority the FDA is seeking includes:

  1. Issuing subpoenas without a court order. Giving the FDA this new power will create a litigation monster whose annual appetite will rapidly exceed the ten million dollars a year they are now seeking.
  2. Fining Internet pharmacies $500,000.00 every time they sell a drug that does not meet the FDA's definition of a legal prescription. This type of excessive fine will enable the FDA to arbitrarily bankrupt any online pharmacy it decides to target.
  3. Setting up "a rapid response team" to identify, investigate and prosecute websites, i.e., the FDA is seeking to establish a private army of storm-troopers to summarily shut down any website it chooses.

Please do not be mislead by the FDA's pathetic attempts to convince you that they are trying to protect the health of the public by regulating the Internet. According to the April 15, 1998 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association, adverse reactions to legally-prescribed FDA-approved drugs are the fourth to sixth leading cause of death in the United States. Since this article was published almost two years ago, the FDA has done nothing to reduce the number of Americans dying from dangerous drugs, yet the FDA now seeks ten million tax dollars a year to attack alternative health and pharmacy websites.

If the FDA convinces Congress to grant it more power and money to attack health websites, American consumers will be denied access to innovative therapies and pay a lot more for their prescription drugs. I therefore ask that you write me with your position on this issue so I will know how to case my ballot this November.



cc: House Representative