US Government Protecting Us From Too Much Information
We noted earlier that the American government is fighting testing for Mad Cow Disease, saying "more widespread testing does not guarantee food safety and could result in a false positive that scares consumers." Now it appears that in their courageous battle to protect us from information overload, the US Department of Agriculture has cancelled the annual publication of the Agricultural Chemical Usage Report, which lists the kinds and amounts of pesticides applied to crops.
"If you don't know what's being used, then you don't know what to look for," said Charles Benbrook, chief scientist at The Organic Center, a nonprofit in Enterprise, Ore to AP. "In the absence of information, people can be lulled into thinking that there are no problems with the use of pesticides on food in this country." http://greenbiz.com/node/24713Useful Information Used By Environmentalists
The EPA used the report to monitor pesticides and determine which to regulate; environmental groups used it to look at chemicals that might turn up in water; the Natural Resources Defense Council used it to sue the EPA over pollution in Chesapeake Bay. Too much information.
Don Lipton, the American Farm Bureau spokesman, told the AP: "Given the historic concern about chemical use by consumers, regulators, activist groups and farmers, it's probably not an area where lack of data is a good idea."