Pseudo Random News and Comment

Attention pundits: Stop calling it the “defense budget.” Only a very small piece of military spending has anything to do with actual defense, in practice maybe none. The US is protected by 2 large oceans and a well-armed populace, there is very little that truly needs to be done to protect from external aggressors. Rather than mindlessly parroting the propagandists’ terminology, call it what it is: The World Domination Budget. That’s probably easier to cut.

The differing treatment of generics under product liability. If I’m a sloppy generics manufacturer (based in India and making statins for example), my defense to any product liability, negligence, or fraud suit is going to be that any adverse events, whether due to the actual drug or my sloppy manufacturing, are due to one of the listed side effects. As long as my product isn’t tainted with heavy metals or rat poison (and those could be from other environmental exposure) it’s going to be very hard to prove otherwise.

Fascinating piece on the cost of too many doctors on your case. The proliferation of specialists has left coordination sadly lacking in acute care, as I can attest from personal, almost fatal, experience.

There is a difference between a 100% reserve gold standard and a gold exchange standard. Regardless of how it starts out a gold exchange standard becomes a fractional reserve system which allows virtually the same out of control government spending and credit expansion as a fiat money system, limited only by bank runs where people demand gold for their paper, so it’s not surprising it leads to serious problems. This article (and Bernanke) fails to distinguish the difference between the two.

Getting closer to understanding how general anesthetics work.

A potentially significant dent in biomedical patent proliferation.

What makes a successful pregnancy. I find the whole immunological and hormonal battle between mother and fetus fascinating. In some states it may soon be illegal too, depending on interpretation. Your NK cells were improperly activated. How do you plead?

Adding to the confusion about the effects of caffeine on exercise performance. It’s been on and off the banned lists a time or two already and this further muddies the waters.

More confirmation that aspirin can reduce cancer incidence.

Economic impact of false-positive cancer screens. Looking at the charts the false positive rates are shockingly high. It’s no wonder mammography is falling out of favor. Looks like sigmoidoscopy should be heading for the same fate given the incidence rate for males is only 52.7/100,000 according to the CDC.

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