Rehberg’s Call for “Hard Science” Surfaces Again

by jhwygirl

Montanan’s – and the world – first found out about Rep. Denny Rehberg’s push for “hard science” about two weeks ago when he pushed for an amendment that would require “hard science” before the FDA could enact regulatory controls.

Rehberg’s amendment passed. Whee for him, right? And screw the health of Americans….Rehberg was finally able to add something to that very slim resume of his.

Not really…..Rehberg – even as chair – couldn’t follow procedure, having attempted to legislation through Appropriations, which is against House rules.

How embarrassing. Let’s point out here that Denny is chair of that committee. Clearly, he isn’t very effective and doesn’t understand some of the basic parameters of his own committee. I’m sure he blames it on his staff.

What exactly is “hard science”? Here’s the definition, right out of Denny’s original amendment:

Sec. 740. None of the funds made available by this Act may be used by the Food and Drug Administration to write, prepare, develop or publish a proposed, interim, or final rule, regulation, or guidance that is intended to restrict the use of a substance or a compound unless the Secretary bases such rule, regulation or guidance on hard science (and not on such factors as cost and consumer behavior), and determines that the weight of toxicological evidence, epidemiological evidence, and risk assessments clearly justifies such action, including a demonstration that a product containing such substance or compound is more harmful to users than a product that does not contain such substance or compound, or in the case of pharmaceuticals, has been demonstrated by scientific study to have none of the purported benefits.

Yep. Humans as lab rats – body counts required.

Honest to Goddess. And don’t you know those tea party people think they are oh so smart by coming up with the term “hard science” for this crap.

What was Rehberg’s original intent of his amendment? To stop the FDA from regulating what many have said for decades is the overuse of antibiotics in livestock – which is resulting in humans increasingly becoming bacteria resistant, resulting in the need for stronger and stronger antibiotics (or death).

Take a look a the FDA’s apparently-not-“hard-science” report.

The House Energy and Commerce Committee last week threatened to take up Denny Rehberg’s “hard science” cause – having ingeniously found a way to get around that can’t-legislate-from-House Appropriations thing.

Trouble for Rehberg and the rest of the tea party patriots down there in the House is that a bipartisan group of Senators have offered up their own bill which would restrict the use of antibiotics in cattle.

So the tea party bats are loose, crapping in the U.S. House now..and we’ve got dueling bills on an issue that has been generally agreed upon accepted science. Until Denny Rehberg came up with his own new concept: “hard science”.

It’s sad, really. In the future, historians will look back upon this early 21st century political scenery and find accounts of elected officials not only ignoring science, but dismantling the very foundations built by America’s greatest legislators and administrations all to appease the corporate interests of the upper 2% of the population.

  1. Ingemar Johansson

    Yeah, we don’t need to stinkin “hard science”.

    “Is climate change raising sea levels, as Al Gore has argued — or are climate scientists doctoring the data?

    The University of Colorado’s Sea Level Research Group decided in May to add 0.3 millimeters — or about the thickness of a fingernail — every year to its actual measurements of sea levels, sparking criticism from experts who called it an attempt to exaggerate the effects of global warming.

    “Gatekeepers of our sea level data are manufacturing a fictitious sea level rise that is not occurring,” said James M. Taylor, a lawyer who focuses on environmental issues for the Heartland Institute.

    • JC

      You’re going to quote a lawyer from the Heartland Institute–a rightwing freemarket ideological “think” tank if ever there was one–on the climate change issue, and not expect all of us here to not let out a huge collective guffaw?

      This whole “doctoring the data” meme is really hilarious. Why don’t you dissect the issue and do some real reporting BS? Give us some “hard science” instead of ideological prattle from a lawyer representing a Von MIses group of deniers.

      • Ingemar Johansson

        They admitted the “miscalculations” themselves, JC.

        I just couldn’t find the story at the Huffpo or the NYT.

        • JC

          MIscalculation? Hardly. What you are insinuating to be some kind of “doctoring of data” is just the UC group refining their methodology.

          But of course, as an astute follower of Rehberg, I’m sure you’ll heed his call for “hard science” here, and analyze all the data coming out of the CU Sea Level Research Group and give us your expert o[inion on how it is all an Al Gore conspiracy to sell more Power Point lectures or something.

          • Ingemar Johansson

            You’re believing glacial isostatic adjustment? Rising land mass along with rising sea levels?

            Funny tho you mention Al.

            He’s been moaning about a substantial rise in oceans levels and yet just built a 20 million dollar mansion on the beach in CA.

            • Ingemar Johansson

              Whoops, $8+ million mansion bracing for a 20 foot sea rise.

              Scroll down for the picture.


            • JC

              Lay out your argument against GIA using some ‘hard science’, BS. If it’s a matter of “believing” then it is not science.

              Or do you just believe in soft science?

              • Ingemar Johansson

                bogus lynx study=hard science
                polar bear decline=hard science
                caribou decline=hard science
                spotted owl decline=hard science
                wolves won’t decimate elk=hard science
                AGW (hide the decline)=hard science
                plastic shopping bags kill a million shorebirds=hard science
                MTBE is good for missoula groundwater=hard science
                windmills don’t slaughter bats=hard science

                Need I go on?

              • JC

                I get it–you’re a believer in soft science guided by ideology and opinion.

  2. Please – the “Tea Party” did not write that passage that Rehberg tried to insert. A pharma lobbyist did. They want to be able to make up diseases and peddle crap pills and what few honest people left at FDA are interfering. And Rehberg did not do that because he has any knowledge about hard science or drugs, but rather because PHRMA has power. And it is not the mere existence of power that Rehberg fears, but rather that if he doesn’t do what he did, PHRMA money will go to Tester, who will do as told. “Power” means the ability to get what you want from people by either positive or negative means.

    Politics 101.

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