Wednesday, March 13, 2019

The Dose Makes the Poison, Fatty

Swiss physician Paracelsus articulated the fundamental tenet of toxicology: “All things are poison and nothing is without poison; only the dose makes a thing not a poison.” This assertion has passed down to us in abbreviated form: "The dose makes the poison."

The West Virginia House of Delegates recently passed legislature blocking the state Department of Environmental Protection from updating water quality standards. The proposed change in standards would have reduced the allowable concentrations of carcinogens in state waterways.

In an astounding display of Marie Antoinetteism, West Virginia Manufacturers Association president Rebecca McPhail told delegates why the presence of more toxins in the water was no biggie: West Virginians drink less water, eat less fish and are heavier than the national average. The EPA allows states to consider state-specific information about its population when proposing water quality standards.

Let them eat poison! McPhail seems to be suggesting that carrying an extra thirty or forty pounds means that benzene in the drinking water is okay. Meanwhile, the voters keep supporting politicians who enable this cartoonish supervillainy. I guess that capitalists putting toxins in the water is preferable to socialists taking away the hamburgers.

It's depressing that this story has taken a backseat to the story of rich Hollywood types paying bribes to get their spawn into Prestigious Bastions of Prestige. While both are examples of Mammon's malfeasance, causing yokels to die slowly of cancer is worse than getting Biff and Muffy into an Ivy, it's just that the college scandal will be flogged to a fare-thee-well because it highlights hypocrisy by 'Hollywood libs', and it will be, oddly enough, weaponized to undermine Affirmative Action (bookmark this!!!).

Anyway, this story is depressing as hell, and it's still the runup to the Solemn Feast of St Patrick, so how about a thematically appropriate song by the faithful, departed Phil Chevron?

In contrast, poison is alive and well in West Virginia.


Vixen Strangely said...

One of the hollow laughs about this is that adipose tissue has the capacity for not only storing caloric energy, but pollutant toxicity. In other words, ingested carcinogens theoretically would hang around in a fat body for a longer time, prolonging exposure and potential carcinogenic effect. See also: higher rates of certain cancers associated with obesity. See also rates of obesity correlated with economic class--they are dumping on poor folks. Their justifications are about not caring about people at all, not about any science.

Big Bad Bald Bastard said...

Yeah, fat solubility is a thing... they are just adding insult to grievous injury.