When a company sells tainted ice cream, we ask, “When did the FDA know about the contamination?” When a train carrying crude oil derails, we ask, “When did the NTSB know the safety equipment was not installed?”
We ask because those are the agencies that need to be held accountable for protecting us.
But agencies are made up of individuals who make conscious choices about whether they will act. Most take their responsibility very seriously. The state Air Resources Board, for instance, helped uncover the Volkswagen diesel fraud.