Why we need to be protected from ourselves, revisited

My favorite news item yesterday was a report that the manufacturers of anti-depressants had research findings which suggested their product could increase suicidal thoughts and actions in children, but kept it to themselves in order to make their product more marketable. The news story (N.P.R. – 9/8/2004) claimed that it was “well known” that drug companies did not share all of their research results during the FDA approval and subsequent marketing of their drugs. If certain results were deemed “inconvenient” then they were buried.

I’m going to repeat that allegation one more time, because I think it is just swell: the makers of anti depressants had their own research findings which suggested their product made the symptoms of depression worse, and lead to an INCREASE in the incidence of suicide in children; yet they kept it to themselves because it would harm the bottom line.

I would like to suggest that, if these allegations are true, it makes a pretty strong case for the regulation of certain industries.