Contrive, connive

Experience leads us to be cautious about agents of change whose zeal for revolution overwhelms good sense. If Bill and Hillary Rodham Clinton's health care revolution turned out to be an ambush in broad daylight with a blackjack, then the GOP conservatives remind us of those impatient bully drivers who get on your tail at 70 mph and would just as soon force you off the road than pass safely on the left.

However, the conservatives get full credit for making it possible to debate virtually everything that not so long ago was out of bounds for serious policy discussion, including the FDA.

Last week, the Biotechnology Industry Organization introduced its slate of proposals aimed at redirecting FDA resources at drug approval and keeping the agency out of the information flow between drug makers and prescribers, as well as to eliminate the agency's jurisdiction over drug exports to countries that want them (see BioCentury Extra, Feb.

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