Monday, October 13, 2014

Why the government doesn't work - mission creep problem.

If the CDC seems slow to respond, realize that it has its hands full managing obesity and children's nutrition, rather than focusing on, you know, deadly communicable diseases.

The former is important to the First Lady; the latter is important to everyone else.

“It Has A Mission Creep Problem,” argues David Harsanyi, noting that large chunks of the Centers for Disease Control’s budget and attention now go “to temporary health scares and trendy crusades that often go well beyond any mission it should be pursuing.” Glenn Reynolds has more at USA Today on how the agency has far more on its plate than communicable disease these days, “having involved itself in everything from playground safety to smoking in subsidized housing.” (And binge drinking, and obesity, and suburban zoning, and….)

It seems that as government has gotten bigger, and accumulated more and more of its own ancillary responsibilities, it has gotten worse at its primary tasks. It can supervise snacks at elementary schools, but not defend the borders; it can tax people to subsidize others’ health-care plans but not build roads or bridges; and it can go after football team names but can’t seem to deal with the Islamic State terror group.

Earlier on the Centers for Disease Control and on director Thomas Frieden, who of course won fame before his CDC appointment for his activism as NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s health commissioner, crusading against salt, sugar, guns, and so forth.//

We need a smaller, more focused government.


marian said...

The CDC does not understand or face reality as it has been revealed to us regarding Lyme Disease. Many people in the U.S. have been suffering and the CDC denies that they may need long term antibiotics. This is very evident in the treatment protocols they have instituted. These protocols have remained in place for well over 20 years. Therefore, many doctors who treat Lyme disease have had to simply follow their own guidelines which is what is helping patients to heal. This puts the doctors at risk for losing their licenses. This type of thing needs to be resolved. Ebola sounds seriously deadly and is a virus which is different from a bacteria. LETS hope and pray that the CDC does not turn a blind eye to the realities we may be facing with Ebola.

j. Hershaw said...

I wonder if the reason the CDC is focused on obesity, childhood nutrition and smoking is that these issues are directly related to many of the most common causes of the death in the United States; namely, heart disease, cancer, chronic respiratory diseases, stroke, diabetes, and kidney disease. Seems to me the CDC focusing on such matters is entirely appropriate and is not a good example of government mission creep. There are other better examples.

Heart disease: 596,577
Cancer: 576,691
Chronic lower respiratory diseases: 142,943
Stroke (cerebrovascular diseases): 128,932
Accidents (unintentional injuries): 126,438
Alzheimer's disease: 84,974
Diabetes: 73,831
Influenza and Pneumonia: 53,826
Nephritis, nephrotic syndrome, and nephrosis: 45,591
Intentional self-harm (suicide): 39,518
EBOLA (total to date): 1

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