Saturday, August 13, 2005

So much for ordering that case of Viagra

Those of you who still labor under the fantasy that the GOP is the party of small government need to read this story about a bill the president has signed into law to create a database to monitor prescription drug usage. Yes, the government's war against illicit drug abuse is going so smashingly well that now they are going after people who misuse legal medication. I weighed in on this issue a few weeks ago, here. And some people are so cynical as to think that this system could actually be misused:

"This bill lacks fundamental privacy protections, such as notifying patients if their information has been lost or stolen," said Democratic Rep. Edward J. Markey of Massachusetts, whose amendment to add that notification to the bill was defeated in committee. "The lack of such safeguards virtually guarantees that this well-meaning effort to combat drug abuse will become a scandalous invasion of the privacy of innocent bystanders."

Note that Markey isn't concerned about the government using this information for nefarious purposes, nor does he seem worried that the government might inadvertenly target innocent patients. Of course, who doesn't trust the government? I mean, I seem to recall someone once saying that government was the problem, not the solution. He may have even been president. If memory serves, he may even have been a Republican.


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