In recent months, readers of The Journal have been exposed to thought-provoking communications on the problems of rules and regulations. Two articles come immediately to mind and deserve succinct recapitulation. In a brief COMMENTARY, Aring1 argues that rules restrain positive spontaneity and creativity while encouraging an adversarial social system. In a later SPECIAL COMMUNICATION, Landau2 interprets the restrictive effects of the Food and Drug Administration's labeling regulations on estrogenic agents. Both pieces are worth rereading, for they outline some of the conceptual and actual hazards of relying on the "weak reed" of regulations.
Rules and regulations do exist, however, and we cannot write them off as easily as they are being written into our Federal Register. They are being increasingly instituted, at least in part, because members of our society no longer exercise self-discipline; because the striving for the individual is taking precedence over the greater good; and