On April 16th, 2014, I hosted a conference call on creating government
accountability. There were three other people on the call: Lewis M.
Shepard, a fellow Green Party member and cofounder of Cancer Action
NY; Dale Pondysh, a North Country environmental activist and Daniel
Flatley, a reporter for the Watertown Daily Times. There was a great
feeling of people rising free of bad government and making progress
toward replacing the bad government with good government on this call.
Lewis M. Shepard spoke about the failure of the United States
government to protect Americans against asbestos exposure during a
long period of time after it was known that asbestos exposure was
causing serious harm to health. He compared government’s downfall on
asbestos with what is currently happening with mercury dental
amalgams. The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) allows the use of
mercury amalgams when this practice has been banned elsewhere. The
placement of a highly toxic neurotoxin in people’s mouths goes against
all common sense. Nevertheless, this practice continues because the
use of mercury amalgams is a moneymaker for dentists.
Dale Pondysh shared a list of actions for which he would like to see
government held accountable: wars in Afghanistan and Iraq; promoting
unrest in the Ukraine; allowance of GMO products to be sold without
labeling and failure to tax the most wealthy of Americans. He voiced
the sentiment that this was far from what he wanted government to be
I described my work of attempting to hold governmental public health
entities including: the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention,
the National Cancer Institute and the New York State Department of
Health accountable for their failure to warn Americans of avoidable
chemical exposure cancer hazards. This work involved the publication
of the Cancer Action NY report, “Disinformation Cancer Epidemic”,
which focused upon deceptive and incomplete public health messaging
regarding dioxin exposure.
I stated my belief that legislation could serve to create government
accountability. I provided details of three laws serving such a
purpose. The first law would require that government employees and
officials participate in on the record discussion of citizen
complaints of failure to properly conduct government work. These
recorded discussions would be the property of the citizen making the
complaint. The recordings could be placed on the internet to raise
public awareness of the work failure. The second law would establish
a government office charged with investigating citizen complaints of
failure to do work properly. The third law would give legal standing
to any citizen wishing to file suit alleging failure of a government
employee or official to properly do the work required in that
position. This law would make government employees and officials
personally liable for paying any penalties imposed by the court.
Daniel Flatley asked a most highly important question, why were
Americans not taking action on the many problems of failed government?
I answered that the people were struggling to deal with the immensity
of the government failures. I stated that it was my belief that a
strong social movement was growing in opposition to hydro fracking and
that this movement might inspire citizen efforts to address other
The recording of this conference can be accessed at the URL named below.