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Surgeon General Says CDC Labs are a "National Disgrace"

Reuters is reporting that U.S. Surgeon General David Satcher said that the United States should be "ashamed of the condition of the laboratories at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta". He also said that the public health labs at state and local levels need to be renovated, and that the U.S. needs to train more epidemiologists to deal with an increased number of threats to public health.

We agree that the state of public health services in this country is sad. However, the blame for this can be laid at the feet of President Clinton who obviously knew about the goals of terrorist groups and rogue nations to build biological and chemical weapons capabilities. Clinton instead chose to invest huge amounts of money in diseases which had large political constituencies. There is nothing wrong with spending money on AIDS, breast cancer, and other preventable or curable diseases. But, we ought not to have sacrificed the ability to detect and control outbreaks of things like anthrax and smallpox.

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