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Originally posted by desmo9@Dec 1 2003, 06:26 PM
No heat given from here. Our tort system is bogus, and undermines our entire system of justice. Your example about suing over the lack of shoulder belts in your old car is not that far-fetched, sadly. People have sued because their pre-airbag cars didn't, well, have airbags. The technology was available in the '70s, so they say, so it should have been made available to all cars built after that. Well, was the technology really there? In the next courtroom down, someone else sues because they were injured by the delpoyment force of their bag! But both parties, on totally opposite sides of the fence, likely received damages!

It's not about whether the Bronco met federal requirements. It's not about whether the intention of the automakers was to make safe cars... it's all about big payouts for lawyers and the plaintiffs riding their coattails. The American version of Capitalism has migrated to a spirit of "get rich by doing nothing." Perspiration is no longer required... if people have the inspiration to drum up a legal contest in this country, inspired by big verdicts to hot-coffee-spilling old ladies, they can get rich quick.

The real cluprit is the jury system. Most often these jurors are sympathetic, anti-corporation dimwits. If you have any clue at all, the plaintiff's attorney won't let you on the jury. What these jurors miss, more than anything, is that "corporation" means "many"... the stockholders that own the company, and the workers designing these vehicles don't want to see anyone hurt. Most take great pride in building-in safety. A Bronco-like vehicle will roll over more easily than a low car. Simple physics. Yeah, sometimes the beancounters interfere with sound engineering judgement... maybe that's a lawsuit, but most cases don't fit this criteria. The jurors also miss the fact that the $290 million payouts, all of them, come out of their own -- our own -- pockets. Higher cost of cars, higher cost of insurance, an inability to get anything hotter than pi%s-warm coffee, etc...

One thing I'd do immediately is mandate that punitive damages go to something benefitting society. Use it for education, park maintenance, whatever. This money does NOT belong to plaintiffs nor their lawyers. I have long had a belief that a civil suit could be brought against our own legal system, to get back all the money taken indirectly from citizens (and directly from stockholders), who had no negligence. Just gotta find a lawyer who'll take the case :(
I concur fully with you!
People are so quick to pass blame to others now, and now its possible to make money off passing the blame. And people wonder why this world is going to **** :flush:
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