Congress shall make no law. . .abridging the freedom of speech. . .It should come as no surprise that The Festival of Idiots strongly endorses the freedom of speech, especially the freedom to call idiots "idiots". Did you know that the Federal government restricts the freedom of speech of the manufacturers of dietary supplements? The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulates dietary supplements under the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act of 1994 (DSHEA) by Senators Hatch and Harkin.
-First Amendment of the United States Constitution
a product sold as a dietary supplement and promoted on its label or inCurrently, earthworm producers cannot claim that eating earthworms will cure depression without evidence, but they can claim that they "boost your energy", "support the immune system", "improve outlook", and other such meaningless Newspeak.
labeling* as a treatment, prevention or cure for a specific disease or
condition would be considered an unapproved--and thus illegal--drug.
-FDA on dietary supplements
Representative Ron Ernest Paul (RepREP) thinks it is un-American to prevent dietary supplement manufacturers from making whatever claims they want. Lost amidst the furor over health care reform, Ron Paul (R-TX) has introduced three bills (HR3394, 3395,&3396) to rectify this grave injustice.
The new bills would require Congress to codify FDA and Federal Trade Commission (FTC) acts (such as chastizing Frosted Mini-Wheats) into law in order for them to be enforceable based on an unscholarly interpretation of the non-delegation principle (contained in the word "vested"):
All legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United StatesThey would also require the FDA and Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to have "clear and convincing evidence" that claims to treat specific diseases or disorders are false before they are restricted based on the Fifth Amendment:
- Article 1, Section 1 of the United States Constitution
nor shall any person be. . .deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of lawThis proposed laws would accomplish several important goals in addition to job creation in the snake oil field. Regulation would be crippled, and the FDA and FTC would become redundant. It would also allow dietary supplement manufacturers to make any claims they wish as long as there is not "clear and convincing evidence" that the claims are false, discouraging research on the costs and efficacy of dietary supplements that would restrict the claims that can be made (note to free marketeers: reducing information available reduces the efficiency of markets). The burden of research would fall on the government regulators. Since RepREP zealously opposes "big government", we suspect the funding to support this research role would not materialize.
-relevant portion of the Fifth Amendment of the United States Constitution
Most theories of society are based on the assumption that certain restrictions must be placed on the freedom of the individual in order to guarantee that the freedoms of all.
The right to swing my fist ends where the other man's nose begins.Truth in advertising implies a contractual obligation of the marketer to deliver on the claims being made on the packaging or in the advertising. The restriction on the freedom of speech to make misleading claims, whether intentionally or not, in order to prevent one party from taking another's property (let alone their life) under false pretenses is not unreasonable. The Festival staff apologizes for having a complex, yet logical and consistent theory of human society.
-Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.
If that was not stupid enough, RepREP is also a hypocrite. His new bills only apply to dietary supplements. Why is it ok to defend the freedom of speech of dietary supplement manufacturers, but not pharmaceutical manufacturers? Does RepREP believe that one group deserves more rights than another? The Festival has some pity for sanctimonious fools, but we have nothing but disgust for sanctimonious hypocrites.
For defending the right to make shit up and, even more so, for being a first-rate hypocrite by failing to follow his bad ideas to their logical conclusion, we are happy to welcome Ron Paul to The Festival of Idiots.
In a related note, The Festival staff eagerly await RepREP's legislative efforts to restore our freedom to yell "Fire!" in a crowded theater.