Online Dossier of Stupid Litigation

This site is extremely informative and excellently researched. I also wish it didn’t need to exist.

Check out the section on “Personal Responsibility” at right, down scroll.

What a fantastic, and in many ways sad, blog site. I’ve just scratched the surface by reading some of the cases (i.e., parks that don’t allow sledding anymore, or the criminal who sued cops for pursuing him), but will be browsing deeper. I’ve been a strong advocate of tort reform for as long as I can remember; and these cases perfectly illustrate why.

Yes, there are the obvious, direct costs in terms of higher rates for liability insurance of all kinds for drivers, homeowners, businesses and governments everywhere. The indirect costs trickle into the products we buy, the taxes we pay (especially to cities and counties), and services like electricity (for example, when someone sues the electric company for a million bucks because they lost some meat in the freezer during a power outage). Also there is the cost of a court system bloated well beyond its proper size it should have by dealing with all these unnecessary or overextended cases.

Indeed, the consequential economic tentacles of ridiculous and aboveboard litigation doubtless extend their cancerous reach through almost all aspects of the economy. Much of the damage from stupid, ridiculous or over-punitive lawsuits is hidden or even counterintuitive.

Tort reform usually doesn’t ignite passionate flames of talk-radio rhetoric. Debate and discourse about it runs dry with big words and legal terminology. By its very nature, tort reform almost never can outshine flashier stories and bore its way into the five second attention spans and eighth grade comprehension levels of most folks. It isn’t a hot button sociopolitical issue like abortion, race, the role of state in church and vice versa, or homosexual “rights” and priveleges. But because of the deep impact it carries throughout our economy and social fabric, its impact could be far more crucial for this country, in the long haul, than all of those other issues combined.

Thanks to Don Baker for enlightening me to that most insightful — and disturbing — website.


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