A denunciation of the fraudulent report of the Surgeon General on the effects of passive smoking on health has been deposited with the Office for Research Integrity in Washington, DC. Several organizations have co-signed the official complaint.
Amongst the groups, of course, there are most of the FORCES chapters, as well as the Heartland Institute, the Reason Foundation, and the Bluegrass Institute for Public Policy Solutions in the United States, and Freedom To Choose from England. Other groups can become signatories to the complaint after its delivery to ORI. If you want to become a signatory of the complaint, learn how at our page which contains the documentation presented to the Office of Research Integrity, a static page on our website described below.
As the complaint is an official document, we post it permanently on our website in a static page that is always accessible from our www.forces.org gateway page, and also accessible via the link at the bottom of this page. We feel that it is preposterous that the highest medical authority of the United States has lent itself to this kind of degradation of science and ethics. We therefore felt duty-bound to go on the record with our denunciation.
Will the ORI respond to this plea for institutional integrity, or will the complaint be "buried" in a bottomless pile of paper, stalled for all eternity? We shall see. In the static documentation page we have included an automatic day counter, which started on the day the ORI signed the receipt for our envelope.
The course of this is guaranteed to be interesting. Consider: even if the ORI does not bury our complaint, how will they attempt to establish the truth? Our complaint is, of course, backed by scientific documentation and close logic, but which "authority" will the Office of research Integrity turn to when the highest medical authority of the country is to be investigated? Will they ask that very same authority whether it behaved unethically or not? We are not trying to be funny, but just describing a paradoxical situation realistically.
Whom else could they ask? Maybe pharmaceutically-funded universities that have often "distinguished" themselves by producing epidemiological studies of the same deficient kind as those on passive smoking? The base problem of all those studies is that their numbers – whether purported benefits or risks are shown from passive smoking exposure – do not represent a rational measure, and measure is what science is all about.
Were ORI to confirm that the studies are indeed "science," then the institution would legitimize the degradation of science to a farce to suit socio-political and pharmaceutical marketing agenda. It would also essentially say that scientific farces such as studies that have measured nothing (and express nothing with meaningless numbers) are the science of the 21st century – as long as they are signed by Ph.D.s, they are peer reviewed by people of the same ideology, and they are produced by universities!
In that case, however, we would have official confirmation of where the "credibility" of science stands in this day and age.
We will keep the readership of FORCES International informed on any and all developments of the complaint.