I worked for two years on Capitol Hill and 25 for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. During that tumultuous era, from the administration of Jimmy Carter to the first administration of George W. Bush, I saw and experienced the decline and near extinction of America's policies for the protection of public health and the environment.
The government in most instances kept the people in the dark but catered to private interests, which even drafted the government's policy.
In the case of pesticides, for example, the result of the "regulated" industry-government complex has been deleterious.
By the time EPA came into being in December 1970, America was hooked on petrochemical sprays of staggering amounts, 70 percent of which went to drench the farms and the rest to millions of homes, lawns, schools, golf courses and industrial facilities.
Pesticides are by design killers of life. They are biocides. They are the only hazardous pollutant willfully put into the environment. Some of them are associated with higher rates of cancer; others poison the nervous system; others act like hormones, disrupting the endocrine system, causing sex and developmental abnormalities.