Paranoia Begets Permissiveness

Lynn C. Klotz and Edward J. Sylvester

in Breeding Bio Insecurity

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print October 2009 | ISBN: 9780226444055
Published online February 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226444079 | DOI:
Paranoia Begets Permissiveness

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The U.S. biodefense program has been going along a dangerous path for two overarching reasons of paranoia and permissiveness that make strange relations. When each of them is taken alone, they can lead to dire consequences and when taken together they can lead to worse endings. Paranoia is the keystone in government's political policy of instilling fear to maintain a strong image in the war on terror. BioShield 2004 was the first act passed by Congress to provide billions in funding directed to countermeasures for bioweapons agents, but its rules and related federal agency strategy prevented the development of countermeasures. U.S. scientists are working in force on countermeasures for real and imagined bioweapons. As the number of researchers in biosafety laboratories increases, access to biological weapons agents and training in their skilled use increases. This markedly increases the risk of politically disaffected or mentally unstable lab workers exploiting these agents for hostile purposes.

Keywords: U.S. biodefense program; paranoia; permissiveness; terror; BioShield 2004; bioweapons; biosafety

Chapter.  10259 words. 

Subjects: Biotechnology

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