Last year, the Food and Drug Administrationproposed a set of voluntary “guidelines”designed to nudge the meat industry to curb its antibiotics habit. Ever since, the agency has been mulling whether and how to implement the new program. Meanwhile, the meat industry has been merrily gorging away on antibiotics—and churning out meat rife with antibiotic-resistant pathogens—if the latest data from the FDA itself is any indication.
The Pew Charitable Trusts crunched the agency’s numbers on antibiotic use on livestock farms and compared them to data on human use of antibiotics to treat illness, and mashed it all into an infographic, which I’ve excerpted below. Note that that while human antibiotic use has leveled off at below 8 billion pounds annually, livestock farms have been sucking in more and more of the drugs each year—and consumption reached a record nearly 29.9 billion pounds in 2011. To put it another way, the livestock industry is now consuming nearly four-fifths of the antibiotics used in the US, and its appetite for them is growing.
• Of the Salmonella on ground turkey, about 78% were resistant to at least one antibiotic and half of the bacteria were resistant to three or more. These figures are up compared to 2010.
• Nearly three-quarters of the Salmonella found on retail chicken breast were resistant to at least one antibiotic. About 12% of retail chicken breast and ground turkey samples were contaminated with Salmonella.
• Resistance to tetracycline [an antibiotic] is up among Campylobacter on retail chicken. About 95% of chicken products were contaminated with Campylobacter, and nearly half of those bacteria were resistant to tetracyclines. This reflects an increase over last year and 2002.
U.S. weapons that were exported to Mexico as part of the controversial “Fast and Furious” program ended up in the hands of Colombia crime syndicate Oficina de Envigado, reported newspaper El Tiempo Monday.
According to the newspaper, investigations by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) have established that some of the weapons found during the arrest of Oficina boss “Sebastian” were part of the thousands of arms lost in the Fast and Furious program.
“Two rifles that were seized in February with ‘Frank’, the brother of Sebastian also are part of the tracking operations of the ATF, the same with 14 Five-seven guns we have found in several raids,” an anonymous high-ranking source within Colombia’s National Police was quoted as saying by El Tiempo.
The source added that ATF agents are in Medellin where the Oficina operates and inspect every seized firearm found in raids in Colombia’s second largest city.
In the U.S., a House Judiciary Committee and the Department of Homeland Security have been investigating the Fast and Furious scandal which is held responsible for the export of at least 2,000 firearms.
Congressman Jared Polis recently had the chance to question DEA Administrator Michele Leonhart about current drug policies. Instead of stating facts, all she could do is waste the congressman’s time, only using comments like, “I think…” and “All illegal drugs are bad.” As if the legal status of a chemical compound has any bearing whatsoever on its pharmacology.
When asked over and over if marijuana — you know that stuff the President of The United States of America Barack Obama did inhale – is more dangerous than heroin, cocaine, or meth, she could only offer the South Park-esque answer of, “Drugs are bad, M’Kay.”
Attorney General Eric Holder testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, June 12, 2012, before the Senate Judiciary Committee hearing looking into national security leaks. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
tl;dr now he faces up to $1000 in fines and 1 year in prison for giving guns to Mexican drug lords.
The House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform voted to find Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder Jr. in contempt of Congress for failing to provide subpoenaed documents in the flawed Fast and Furious gun-tracking case, just hours after President Obama asserted executive privilege and backed the attorney general’s refusal to release the material.
The vote for contempt and the White House insertion into the growing Southwest border “gun-walking” scandal set up a significant constitutional clash between the two branches of the federal government, one that ultimately may not be resolved until it reaches the courts.
The Republican-led committee, headed by Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Vista), voted strictly along party lines in finding Holder in contempt. It now sends the matter to the full House for a floor vote to ask the U.S. attorney in Washington, D.C., or a special prosecutor to force the Obama administration to provide the documents. (more…)
Attorney General Eric Holder sparred Thursday with Republican lawmakers who demanded to know why Justice Department officials haven’t been fired over the Operation Fast and Furious gunrunning scandal and the botched prosecution of the late Sen. Ted Stevens.
During a House Judiciary Committee oversight hearing, members of Congress complained that the Justice Department’s response to both episodes has been too timid, and officials who engaged in misconduct have gotten away with a slap on the wrist or even less.
The congressional hearing, like several involving Holder over the past year, was dominated by discussion of the Fast and Furious episode. While much of Congress has been in a frenzy over leaks of classified national security secrets, that subject was barely broached at the Judiciary Committee session. (more…)
Bruce Schneier’s a security specialist with his own Internet meme. And while most people believe that technology elevates, improves things, Schneier holds that technology magnifies, makes things bigger, good and…