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Thursday, February 23, 2012

Its like they are taking "stupid" pills

It must be a bad sign from God. The last few days all signs have been pointing to one clear fact. People are now actually taking "stupid" pills.

That is the only explanation I can think of.

As I was sitting in my office a group of trial lawyers came in to talk about issues of the day. The latest idea they hate of mine is a bill that says in some legal situations a loser pays winners legal fees type scenario is reasonable to stop some frivolous lawsuits. I can see how some people may be against it at all levels, but some of the arguments used to fight against it make me want to ram my head into a wall.

As we debated the issue, one argument they used was the classic "lady who burned her crotch with hot coffee and got millions from McDonald's". This was supposed to show me how well the current system worked. That one alone about made my brain spin around inside of my head. Then the topper for the day was the case where someone had their car stolen and the car thief crashed it and killed someone in another car. One of the people who was hit by the car sued. Not the criminal, but the actual owner of the car because they left their keys in the car.....And (after multiple, multiple appeals) they won because the keys in the unlocked car were just too tempting for the criminal to overcome.

It put me in mind of the court room scene from the comedy movie "Idiocracy". By what logic do these judgements get made?

The next day I met the same two lawyers at a lunch reception for the trial lawyers. Just for fun I threw them two questions.

I said "I was thinking about your hot coffee case and I have a question. If I smoke two packs of cigarettes a day for 20 years and I read the sign on the side of the pack that tells me "smoking causes cancer" every day and then I do get cancer. Whose fault is it?"

The two lawyers looked at each other unsure how to respond. They pondered, argued back and forth for about 10 minutes before breaking down and admitting it was maybe, possibly, partly, just a little bit the smokers fault.... but not in all cases.

My gosh. we are in trouble! I thought. This is the future of the legal profession.

I then went to the assessment of blame question. I asked one of the lawyers (A pretty young girl)

"As to who is at fault for criminal activity, If you wear a mini skirt does that put you at fault if you are raped because you tempted the criminal?"

"Well!!! That's different!!!" She exclaimed.

Really? Well, maybe, possibly, partly, just a little bit. The more I thought about it the more it is like if a rapist caught a disease from one of his victims and then gave the disease to his girlfriend who later sued the rape victim for wearing a mini skirt.

Yes, I know, still totally ridiculous.

But that is what we are dealing with in the courts now and probably into the future. People having to pay thousands to defend themselves against these type cases. My hope is in common sense (like this person) will spring back into vogue and people will see the error of their ways. My last hope is the "brilliant" pills come on the market soon.

P.S. Stealing a video from a vendor at a trial lawyer reception to try and prove me wrong does not help your argument.


  1. Stacy, remember the law is about the law. It is not about right and wrong, or even reality. Laymen forget this, or don't know it. Lawyers do, but over a period of time, tend to confuse the two.

  2. If the law is about the law, then we have 29 State Tennessee appellate court judges who are unconstitionally seated and we need them step down now, or to be impeached. The Democratic Party passed off this system and it is long past time for the Republican Party in this State to stop talking about following the Constitution and begin following it.

    Please start the reforms at the top. We have tried the bottom up legal reform approach for too long and it doesn't work anymore. The trial lawyers have too much money. If the lawyers in this State cannot follow the law, if the political leaders cannot follow their oath of office then we need to begin clearing it from the top down.

  3. Could you provide a link or reference to the car thief case you are talking about?

  4. I still think it's corrupt that the (rich) government would be allowed to prosecute criminal (often poor) defendants, and not pay any legal fees following an acquittal or dismissal — yet you would make private (i.e., poor) prosecutors pay the legal fees of successful civil (generally rich) defendants. Anyway, the system is working fine at present. There is no need to tamper with it so drastically.

  5. I like your own suggestion of ramming your head into a wall. Try it.

    1. Anonymous, if you don't have anything to contribute, why say anything at all? These people who are talking here are trying to restore some integrity to our legal system. Do you not have anything to add to this discussion? It could affect you someday!


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