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Nov 23, 2012


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Seems like there are a few factors that drive alarmism...
1. Liability: missing the existence of cancer is far more costly than running hundreds of tests on the first possibly signs of risk factors. (See Italian Earthquake scientist manslaughter trial)
2. Donors: especially given the poor economy putting the clamps on people's wallet, then the ones who can 'make the pitch' is the ones who can snag those dwindling donations and one of those pitches will always involve the critical nature of their cause.
3. News cycle exposure: No news outlet wants to deal with the lack of assurance and moderation of conclusions that scientific endeavors will always have. They want something absolute, here and now, and preferably something controversial before they'll even consider giving news about health and medicine anything close to front page placement. So talk of risk factors and moderation are lot less likely than '_______ can cause/prevent (disease name).'
4. Politics: You got to admit, politicians are unlikely to act against certain substances unless a lot of people believe that a specific substance will cause substantial harm. Even then, it's still tricky, cigarettes have zero health benefit and still legal... took years of legal wrangling to take on asbestos... so the lack of a sense of urgency can mean an utter lack of action on materials that does have the potential to cause cancer or other diseases, might as well go for broke and try to accelerate activity surrounding the material of dubious distinction.

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