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Government

FDA Sued To Stop Antibiotic Abuse On Factory Farms 298

Hugh Pickens writes writes "Medical groups from the American Medical Association to the American Society of Microbiology have appealed to the government and industry for years to restrict the practice of providing sub-therapeutic doses of antibiotics for livestock, lest critical antibiotics become useless for human treatments. Now Tom Laskawy reports that a coalition of environmental groups has decided to sue the Federal Drug Administration to follow its own safety findings and withdraw approval for most non-therapeutic uses of penicillin and tetracyclines in animal feed to healthy livestock when it's not medically necessary. 'While this may cause eyerolls among some who look at this as "just another lawsuit," there's something very important going on with the courts and contested science right now,' writes Laskawy. 'As it happens, one of the main roles of a judge is as "finder of fact." In practice, this means that judges determine whether scientific evidence is compelling enough to force government action."'"
The Internet

FCC Proposes 100Mbps Minimum Home Broadband Speed 461

oxide7 writes "The US Federal Communications Commission unveiled a plan on Tuesday that would require Internet providers to offer minimum home connection speeds by 2020, a proposal that some telecommunications companies panned as unrealistic. The FCC wants service providers to offer home Internet data transmission speeds of 100 megabits per second to 100 million homes by a decade from now, Commission Chairman Julius Genachowski said."
Communications

Utah Law Punishes Texters As Much As Drunks In Driving Fatalities 620

The NY Times reports on legislation in Utah which harshly penalizes people who cause fatal car accidents while texting. Instead of merely facing a fine, offenders may now get up to 15 years in jail — the same as drunk drivers. "In effect, a crash caused by such a multitasking motorist is no longer considered an 'accident' like one caused by a driver who, say, runs into another car because he nodded off at the wheel. Instead, such a crash would now be considered inherently reckless. 'It's a willful act,' said Lyle Hillyard, a Republican state senator and a big supporter of the new measure. 'If you choose to drink and drive or if you choose to text and drive, you're assuming the same risk.' The Utah law represents a concrete new response in an evolving debate among legislators around the country about how to reduce the widespread practice of multitasking behind the wheel — a topic to be discussed at a national conference about the dangers of distracted driving that is being organized by the Transportation Department for this fall."

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