Tobacco Regulation vs. The Drug War

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June 23 2009 3:59 PM

Tobacco Regulation vs. The Drug War

If you want to know what Obama really thinks about tobacco, don't read his lips. Read his teeth. To relieve his addiction and protect his health, he's been chewing nicotine gum . The law he just signed authorizes the FDA to expedite approval of nicotine lozenges, gum, and patches. It encourages the agency to broaden the grounds for prescribing such products and to authorize their "extended use." It puts regulators smack in the middle of the nicotine business so they can turn it to better use. If only all our drug policies were this rational.

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Will Saletan writes about politics, science, technology, and other stuff for Slate. He’s the author of Bearing Right. Follow him on Twitter.