…if the CDC needs additional funding to deal with legitimate health scare like Ebola, it should certainly be available. What shouldn’t be forgotten, though, is that CDC’s budget and purview have swollen over the past few decades as it has seen an infusion of funding due to temporary health scares and trendy crusades that often go well beyond any mission it should be pursuing.
The CDC, an agency whose primary mission was to prevent malaria and then other dangerous communicable diseases, is now spending a lot of time, energy and money worrying about how much salt you put on your steaks, how often you inhale second-hand smoke and how often you do calisthenics. Though the CDC has done an admirable job in managing the panic surrounding Ebola, it is, historically speaking, a national leader in unscientific panic mongering. You might remember when top CDC scientists declared the “epidemic” of obesity would soon be the leading contributor to preventable death in the United States? The CDC claimed it obesity deaths had risen 33 percent between 1990 and 2000. It claimed that 400,000 people would die from being overweight. It turned out these numbers were made up, and the CDC was forced to revise the estimate by a mere 1,400 percent.
Why exactly is it necessary for organizations like the CDC to have political appointees running them?