Party Like a Regulator

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Today marks the 100th anniversary of the Pure Food and Drugs Act, and they're throwing a rager down at FDA HQ:

The ceremony, which will be held at the FDA's Harvey W. Wiley federal building, will feature U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Michael O. Leavitt and Acting FDA Commissioner Andrew C. von Eschenbach, M.D. Also in attendance will be senior leaders of the agency, and scores of current and former FDA employees and special guests including former Commissioners of Food and Drugs, representatives of consumer and trade groups, and descendants of Dr. Harvey W. Wiley, the scientist whose early support of food and drug regulations earned him the title of "Father of the Pure Food and Drugs Act."

According to the day's program, the "FDA Centennial Anthem" will be performed by the "FDA Chorus and U.S. Public Health Service Wind Ensemble." I hope things don't get too out of hand, what with all the reveling, FDA-approved substances, and hot young drug reps. We wouldn't want someone to wake up tomorrow in need of Plan B. I hear it can be hard to get.

Reason is a veritable pharmacopoeia of FDA analysis: Ten years back, Thomas Hazlett compared the FDA to an emotionally vulnerable adolescent boy. In '03, Jacob Sullum explained the anti-pleasure principle. In '04, Todd Seavey asked, "Is the FDA necessary?" And last year, I defended self-medicators everywhere.

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  1. FDA Chorus and U.S. Public Health Service Wind Ensemble.”

    I’m so glad my taxes support such things. Where would the U.S. be without a FDA Chorus?

  2. We can be assured that the FDA Chorus only sings songs that have passed trials for both Inoffensiveness and Entertainment.

  3. Throw out your hands
    Stick out your tush
    Hands on your hips
    Give him a push
    You’ll be surprised, you’re doin’ the FDA, voil

  4. I’m hip. I’m with it.

    Dukka-dukka-dukka-dukka-ahhhupp!

  5. Here’s to a “going out of business” party in the next 100 years, the sooner the better…

  6. I question the legitimacy of any organization that forbids the importation of haggis. It’s the height of racism.

  7. I know how regulators party.

    Instead of lunch hour, everyone gathers in the conference room. Everyone signed up to bring something, either desert or lunch. Some of the food is really good, and some is really crappy. The lifers talk about when they used to have liquor at these things. So you’re balancing a little plate on your lap, or trying not to spill anything on the table, and the political appointee-department director is being entertaining.

    I wonder if the Bush appointee-department heads start with a prayer.

  8. If we had had a little warning, maybe we could have chipped in to hire kwais to crash, and I mean “crash”?

  9. “OK guys, this is the drinking game: every time someone dies because we denied them experimental treatment, take a shot!”

  10. If only Old Mr. Ahern would calm down a while. That’s the only way rocking at the Government Center is ever gonna get better.

  11. Hey, where all da white women at?

  12. Joe has the civil service “party” routine right. I’m a retired federal employee. Often you can get & take leave on the day of the party & avoid it. There is also the dodge of covering the telephone but one risks having someone offer to releive you so you can get a plate of the “goodies” or someone will bring you a plate of the “goodies”. To be prepared for either case I kept a large waste basket close & dumped the “goodies” in the waste basket.
    A surprise party in your honor can be handled in two ways: 1 Feign surprise; have an attack of the vapors & spend the time the party takes streached out on a couch in the rest room; to emit low groans while vomiting in the nearest wastebasket is helpful & keeps the sympathetic away. 2. Collar your supervisor & tell the supervisor that you feel that any party during working hours is cheating the taxpayer & the party is a gross invasion of your right to personal privacy. Nothing surprising ever happens in any federal office so you can collar your supervisor days before the “surprise” party is to take place.
    Either tactic will make you as popular as an HIV+ person at an orgy but you can get away with it after you have gotten past your probationary period.

  13. The lifers talk about when they used to have liquor at these things.

    When Europeans visit my research institute they express disbelief about the rules against bringing alcohol onto the premises. (Note: Laboratory ethanol is exempt, obviously.) Some of them go on about it at great length.

    I use that as my opening to discuss drug legalization.

  14. I hope the “FDA Centennial Anthem” is as rousing as the Glaucoma Hymn.

  15. And *somebody* needs to get a hold of the lyrics, by hook or by crook. Video would be even better. Bonus points if the choir uses jazz hands in the performance.

  16. Yah, ok, I’ll click the damn link before posting, lyrics are there. whatever.

    One century past, a people?s hope fulfilled
    By an act conceived for safe medicine and food
    Protecting rights that our founding fathers willed
    To life and liberty, to happiness pursued.

    We honor those who carried on before
    O?er these hundred years, public safety to secure
    For food, vaccines, drugs, devices, blood and more
    They strove to see these goods effective, safe, and pure.

    In field and lab, in workplace far and near
    From both civilian and commissioned corps
    A call goes forth in this centennial year
    That this rich heritage continue evermore.

    Now in this proud hour, a vibrant vision thrives
    True to our mission, whate?er the challenge be
    With science our guide, we rededicate our lives
    To help create a future healthy, safe, and free.

    For some reason, In my head I hear Iron Maiden singing that, to the tune of Number of the Beast. All you have to do is insert the chorus.

  17. FDA birthday? NOT …

    http://www.notadoc.org/Articles/NATURALLY%20Speaking/wiley_act_for_good_of_the_people.htm

    The FDA didn’t even come into existence until more than 20 years after the Pure Food & Drug Act.

    Most who lie about their age make themselves younger. Exceptions to that include:

    The only examples I can think of where folks lie to make themselves older …

    Get into the Guiness Book of World Records (FRAUD)

    Get a Senior Discount (FRAUD)

    Get alcoholic beverages (DECEIT)

    Get access to XXX porno materials (DECEIT)

    FDA = FRAUD & DECEIT ADMINISTRATION?

    I can’t think of any honorable reasons folks lie about their age to be older.

  18. According to the day’s program, the “FDA Centennial Anthem” will be performed by the “FDA Chorus and U.S. Public Health Service Wind Ensemble.”

    Sounds like a better use of tax dollars than “The FDA SWAT Team.”

    I can’t think of any honorable reasons folks lie about their age to be older.

    Enlist in the military? You did say “honorable,” not “smart.”

  19. Good points, Larry. I sit corrected.

  20. I think it is entirely honorable for young adults to drink in defiance of alcohol laws.

    Side question: in all of history has there ever been a work/corporate/office “party” where the attendees had actual fun? As in “wow, this is way better than spending time with my friends and family” fun?

  21. Side question: in all of history has there ever been a work/corporate/office “party” where the attendees had actual fun? As in “wow, this is way better than spending time with my friends and family” fun?

    When the indians gather in the break room around a cake baked by the lowest-bid local bakery? No. However I suspect a different dynamic may be at work when the chiefs meet each other in Honolulu.

  22. Side question: in all of history has there ever been a work/corporate/office “party” where the attendees had actual fun? As in “wow, this is way better than spending time with my friends and family” fun?

    My evaluation of these functions has little to do with “fun” and everything to do with the quality of the food and presence or not of free booze.

    But the answer to your actual question is most likely no.

  23. I don’t have time to do this, but someone should take AC/DC’s “TNT” and rewrite it to be “FDA”.

    Oi! Oi!

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