Precautionary principle flubs again

British health officials respond to a major new study showing there is not link between cell phones and cancer with, in effect, “This is great! But we still have to be cautious. . .” Jennie Bristow at Spiked exposes the underlying absurdity and its implications. It’s like saying, “Well, no one really thinks Martian invaders are a threat. But we have to be cautious, so lets invest in a Martian Defense System.” Yes, lets piss away resources and economic benefits preventing or avoiding speculative harms that have been refuted, rathar than spending those resources perhpas on dealing with real risks. Some of my Reason colleague’s commentaries on the precautionary principle here, and here.

Adrian Moore

Adrian Moore, Ph.D., is vice president of policy at Reason Foundation, a non-profit think tank advancing free minds and free markets.