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Tort Reform — A Misconception


Although the following was a parody published in the New York Bar Journal, it rings amazingly true for the thought process used in decisions to send products into the market place:

“Remember when some bad tires exploded and killed a few people?  Lawsuits uncovered the defect.  Nobody would have known anything about it except for what the lawyers learned in “discovery.”  No secret is safe from those damn lawsuits.  It was a shame.  Those tires were a profitable product.  And remember when two million women used those IUDs for birth control?  A very convenient device.   Sure, some had miscarriages, pelvic infections, and, yes, some even died.  But the majority didn’t.  The FDA was no problem but, once again, the lawsuits, not the regulators, are getting them off the market and another profitable product will be lost to industry.”

--NYSBA Journal: parodies tort reform in “Tort Reform and the KKK Manifesto.” July/August 2012; Pg. 44

….And that is the opinion of big business. Profit. Profit. Profit.

It comes as no surprise that beginning several years ago, corporations launched devastating un-American campaigns on our judicial system, which they call “tort reform.”  It is a coined phrase that has become a masterful campaign to whittle away the rights of the people, under the guise of progress. Brilliant! Tort reform is nothing more than a deceptive turn of a phrase to trick Americans into sacrificing their rights.

People should have equal access to justice.  Corporations across this country have quite successfully waged an unwarranted attack on our judicial system.  Don’t forget, these American corporations have billions of dollars in which to wage this war. They have unlimited amounts of money to influence politicians, to control the media, and to manipulate justice.  What’s the motive?  Control the judicial process so they won’t be financially liable for their wrongdoing.  If big business wins this war, no one will be holding them accountable. Winning to corporate America means:

“A plutocracy where Big Coal, Big Oil, Big Tobacco, Big Drugs, Big Insurance are no longer abused….A beautiful world of laissez-faire capitalism and, don’t forget, full of profit. Profit. Profit, unregulated, untaxed, unlitigated. No consumer lawsuits. Just pure profit….And that’s what tort reform is all about.”

--NYSBA Journal: “Tort Reform and the KKK Manifesto.” Pg. 47

It is incredibly scary to think of living in a country where corporations could band together to influence the courts, control the media, and own legislators to further their own ideological goals.

The attack on our judiciary and court system is extremely dangerous.  Justice is being eroded and Corporate America is trying to buy their way into our courts.  After all, our government is supposed to be by the people and for the people.

Be wary of the mastermind tort reform campaign that limits the peoples’ access to justice. Read between the lines. Pay attention to the carefully chosen semantics and resulting consequences. The bottom line is tort reform is designed to erode your rights and limit your recovery; it is not designed to fix anything in the judicial system.

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