After long consideration, a jury (of one, your honorable scribe) has chosen Susanne Rust and Meg Kissinger of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinal as the winners of a prestigious “Merzie” in the category of Investigative Reporting for an article titled “EPA drops ball on danger of chemicals to children”, posted on March 29, 2008. This article exposes the EPA’s programs for determining the safety of chemicals used in the manufacture of children’s products as a fraud. Top EPA adminstrators fill the air with ballyhoo about how their programs protect children while, in fact, the programs they describe are actually unfunded, ineffective, and almost entirely shut down.

This subject is beyond politics. No true conservative or liberal should tolerate this kind of destructive dishonesty. When a science-based government agency comprises its fundamental scientific integrity on matters that are so important for our children and our families, we should ALL be alarmed.

We all know who pays for this kind of passive-aggressive subterfuge. Innocent infants and children do. Their families do, in spades. Society does, in enormous lost possibilities, and in paying the very large bills required to clean up the consequences.

If you’ve followed this blog, you know that growing scientific evidence indicates that chemical toxins delivered into infant and child environments from a number of sources put fetal and baby brains at risk for developmental impairment. In an era when science is screaming for the government to take these issues more seriously, this key government agency has done exactly the opposite. It’s even more galling to see a deliberately blinded, toothless, hobbled Watchdog brag about the great job that they’re doing protecting our babies and kids.

Shame on them.