Writing in European Scientist, Drs. Samuel Cohen, Penny Fenner-Crisp, Alan Boobis, and Angelo Moretto compare the International Agency for Research on Cancer to the Douglas Adams conservative science-fiction spoof "The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy." The book starts off with out-of-control government that doesn't know why it does things, but using terms like eminent domain, on earth before veering to out-of-control government in space, including a self-appointed centralized research program that is out to discover "the meaning of life, the universe, and everything" - and comes up with the number 42 as the answer. 

The computer is absolutely confident in its result. The answer is also meaningless.

It's hard to see a flaw in the comparison between that and IARC, an organization that exists to create correlation between products and cancer and, in order to continue to have a reason to exist, continues to declare new products carcinogens, using increasingly suspect methodology.

Eating meat, being a carpenter, drinking tea, you name it and IARC has either called it a carcinogen or wants to soon. And if it is a corporate product, the 'risk' of it being labeled a carcinogen is much higher, because in 2009 the group appointed a leader who banned any expert that had ever consulted for "industry" from being on working groups, while giving special invitations to epidemiologists who were instead getting paid by environmental groups and attorneys to be expert witnesses suing over products IARC was studying. He is now gone but his Old Guard remain.

This once prestigious group in a conservative field - epidemiologists didn't accept a hereditary risk for cancer until long after biologists and doctors, because they did not see enough data - is now so shoddy and slapstick in their approach that France's IARC, Italy's Ramazzini Institute, and the U.S. National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences have turned epidemiology into a joke. Those three groups created so much distrust that when it came time for epidemiology to really shine - the COVID-19 pandemic - no one believed projections because people assumed disease epidemiologists were just as creepily fixated on promoting hysteria as food and environmental ones.

Everything causes cancer. And prevents cancer. Because epidemiology is just finding a link between some cause and effect and declaring statistical significance. 

Yet despite science journalists having it in their job description to know better, each time IARC or Environmental Working Group produces something new, their political allies in corporate media dutifully repeat it and use terms like "risk" even though neither group calculates anything of the kind.

IARC, for example, will create a "hazard" designation, using five orders of magnitude - one dose is the same as 10,000 doses to their epidemiologists and then babble about risk in their press kits all while rightly denying they determine risk in their actual monographs. The dose makes the poison, until IARC needs attention from media, then any dose is a poison.

Yes, epidemiology once had a big win with cigarette smoking, but this century they have contributed nothing to the scientific discourse with over-hyped exploratory papers that have prevented no cases of cancer. The authors, toxicologists and other real scientists, as opposed to statisticians data dredging for attention, recommend IARC change before it is too late. Democrats may not control Congress come late January, and that means they won't continue to protect IARC and other alternatives to science in 2023.