Posted: August 18th, 2009 by Militant Libertarian
(NaturalNews) In recent years, numerous companies have been targeted, raided, and even shut down by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Federal Trade Commission (FTC) for making health claims about the products they sell. These federal agencies operate outside the realm of constitutional legitimacy and thus have pejoratively muzzled free speech concerning natural health products and their health benefits for decades. In an effort to restore constitutional freedom of speech, Congressman Ron Paul of Texas has introduced three bills which would help dismantle the web of corruption that censors legitimate health claims and truthful information about foods, herbs, and supplements that prevent, combat, or otherwise remediate disease.
Some readers may remember back in mid-2008 when the FTC performed a witch hunt against 130 companies and one non-profit religious group who made claims about their products’ effectiveness in treating cancer. The FTC ordered that these entities remove all claims and testimonials and issue a statement to all their customers that drugs and radiation are the only useful and proven treatments for battling cancer and that none of the products or ingredients sold by these companies were helpful in preventing or treating illness.
Similarly, in 2005 the FDA threatened to raid cherry orchards who posted legitimate, peer-reviewed scientific studies on their websites about the health benefits of cherries, claiming that the dissemination of any information correlating cherries to health would cause the cherries to become unapproved drugs subject to seizure.
There have also been countless raids, including one back in January on a company who postulated that its health products treated depression and other illnesses. What resulted was the arrest and detention of the company’s owner by U.S. Federal Marshals for speaking the unapproved truth.
As lunatic as all of this sounds, this type of behavior has become normal operating procedure at the FDA and FTC whose unrestrained power continues to escalate into increasingly tyrannical control over free speech. As such, Rep. Paul’s three bills aim to end the illegitimate censorship of free speech and restore constitutional freedom of speech in natural health. Below are their summaries and information about how to support them.
HR 3394, The Health Information Protection Act, inhibits the FTC from acting against any entity for communicating the health benefits of its products unless the FTC presents “clear and convincing” evidence that those statements are false. In concordance with the Fifth Amendment, the burden of proof concerning an accusation of a false claim is to fall upon the accuser (FTC) to determine, with legitimate evidence, that a claim is false before demanding its removal. As it stands, the FTC has reversed the Fifth Amendment by preemptively and arbitrarily restraining communication without any evidence or reason while demanding that the accused party prove its claim to be true. HR 3394 will reinforce the already lawful Fifth Amendment that establishes the burden of proof upon the FTC to present a legitimate case before impeding any lawful communication. It will restore the freedom to communicate nutrient-disease health claims freely.
Similarly to HR 3394, HR 3395, The Health Freedom Act, will remove the unconstitutional FDA power of “prior restraint” over all nutrient-disease relationship claims. In other words, free speech health claims will no longer be universally banned but will be permitted. The burden of proof will properly and lawfully fall upon the FDA to establish “clear and convincing” evidence against a claim, after it has been made, if it believes a claim is false. The First Amendment of the Constitution was designed to protect the free speech of the people from the federal government imposing “prior restraint” on speech, the very thing the FDA has instated as the foundation for its operating procedure. This bill will preserve the proper and lawful prosecution of those who make false claims, but it will require the government and its agencies, particularly the FDA, to establish legitimate evidence against a claim that it believes to be false prior to taking any action against any person or entity rather, effectively restoring the First Amendment supremacy over the FDA.
Finally, HR 3396, The Congressional Responsibility and Accountability Act, addresses the roughly 90% of federal government law that is enacted not by Congress, as is mandated in the Constitution under the non-delegation doctrine, but by unelected bureaucratic agencies such as the FDA and FTC. As such, it would prohibit any law created by these agencies from being enacted without first being passed by Congress in concordance with Article I of the Constitution. HR 3396 will restore constitutional government by returning the responsibility of legislating law to Congress which will in turn protect the public from rogue federal agencies who tend to overstep their bounds and tyrannize the people.
While these bills mostly reinforce what is already provisioned in our Constitution, they represent the potential for reform by pinpointing specific areas for which our federal government and its agencies have unlawfully violated their roles and tyrannized people by outlawing free speech, particularly health speech. It is time to put these unelected bureaucracies in their place by supporting Rep. Ron Paul’s health freedom bills.
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