An increasingly long line of high-profile scientific misconduct cases raises the question of whether regulatory policy ought to incorporate more rigorous sanctions for investigators and their institutions. Broad and Wade graphically describe these cases through the early 1980s. They continue to recent times with the cases of Evan Dreyer, Kimon Angelides and Robert Liburdy, Justin Radolf, and others. In addition, recent Congressional investigation into conflict of interest concerns surrounding consulting by National Institutes of Health scientists has raised further questions about ethical standards. The record of continuing scandal suggests that current policy may not be optimal for controlling scientific misconduct. Would an alternative policy better minimize its incidence and associated costs?What should we expect of public policy governing misconduct by American scientists? Surely the public has a right to presume that its tax money is being spent wisely and that any economic rewards from taxpayer funded research are used prudently and in the public interest.