Links, 6/8/10

  • Megan McArdle, “No Refills” – a balanced and thoughtful take on why the number of new drugs has decreased markedly. A sample from the article: These days the targets seem smaller, fewer, and farther away. The best-understood diseases already have a lot of good drugs treating them. New treatments need to prove that they have better efficacy, fewer side effects, or something like a longer-lasting dose that makes them superior to the pills already on the market. Longman likens this process to chasing an Olympic sprinter—who has a head start.
  • Wired, “U.S. Intelligence Analyst Arrested in Wikileaks Video Probe” (h/t Josh) – from the article: Lamo has contributed funds to Wikileaks in the past, and says he agonized over the decision to expose Manning — he says he’s frequently contacted by hackers who want to talk about their adventures, and he has never considered reporting anyone before. The supposed diplomatic cable leak, however, made him believe Manning’s actions were genuinely dangerous to U.S. national security. “I wouldn’t have done this if lives weren’t in danger,” says Lamo, who discussed the details with following Manning’s arrest. “He was in a war zone and basically trying to vacuum up as much classified information as he could, and just throwing it up into the air.”
  • “In Alabama, a Home-Grown Bid to Beat Back Oil” (nytimes, h/t Josh) – from the article: Mr. Hinton said: “I could go to jail for going against unified command. Now, I don’t mind going to jail, I just need to make sure it’s for doing the right thing.”

1 Comment

  1. Ashok, another point about decreased new drugs: they are very expensive to develop, and many diseases don’t have enough victims for the drug companies to feel confident of making a profit.

    An argument in favor of the federal government developing new drugs?

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