Crippling Bans

A growing list of situations where politics and public furor and it’s following ban prevents people from taking control of their own lives:

New Scientist: Drug laws are painful for cancer patients

Overzealous regulation of opioids is having a painful knock-on effect on eastern Europeans with cancer. …… They found that tens of thousands of cancer patients in several former Soviet bloc countries can’t easily get the drugs because of laws aimed at preventing a black market in opioids. In Ukraine, for example, patients are only allowed a day’s supply of medicine at a time, while in Georgia they must get a stamp from a police station to obtain painkillers.

Krauthammer on Vioxx:

It’s not an easy calculation. Six years ago, Vioxx, a powerful anti-inflammatory, was withdrawn by the manufacturer because it was found to increase the risk of heart attack and stroke from 0.75 percent per year to 1.5 percent. The company was pilloried for not having owned up to this earlier, but some rheumatologists were furious that the drug was forced off the market at all. They had patients with crippling arthritis who had achieved a functioning life with Vioxx, for which they were quite willing to risk a long-shot cardiac complication. The public furor denied them the choice.

Sources:, Toyota and the Price of Modernity, Friday, February 26, 2010, Charles Krauthammer,
Drug laws are painful for cancer patients, New Scientist, 11:46 24 February 2010 by Ewen Callaway

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