One of the laws former President Bush signed into law during his second term defined the amount of lead permitted in children's products. Lead has been a health issue for years, and the legislation Bush signed into law was important and at first, seemed like a good idea to protect children's health. But there were some unintended consequences.
The law was broadly written and included hand made products. An extreme example of what the law required for testing of children's products determined an amount of just over $2000 for tests of a $10 hand made bib... http://uspolitics.about.com/b/2009/02/09/congressional-ban-on-lead-in-toys-has-u...
The new standards have been in effect for less than two years, and this past week we learn of another unintended consequence of the lead restriction. It seems that some manufacturers have switched to the use cadmium as a legal substitute for lead in kids products, though the dangers appear to be as bad or worse for children than lead. http://www.physorg.com/news182495360.html
I don't know if this is another case of profit at all cost or not, but the dangers of cadmium exposure have been known for years. As near as I can tell, cigarette smokers and those working at or living close to industrial facilities that use cadmium in their manufacturing processes have been most exposed. I have done no research as to why cigarette smoke has cadmium in it, but manufacturing plants make sense as cadmium is used in plating processes among others.
So it seems to some of the worlds manufacturers, it's okay to bend the spirit of the law (protecting children) as long as they don't break the actual rules. It's too bad that we as consumers don't seem to learn who is poisoning us and stop buying their products, instead of expecting the government to protect us with laws that end up being bent, not broke.