The Absolute Need for Tort Reform

SCOTUSI’m planning on looking at various problems liberals whine and complain about needing more government and show how each and everyone one of those problems is caused in multiple ways by more government.  And I already know that in in most of the cases it’s going to come back to Tort Reform being needed, so I figured I should put together some evidence for it.

Tort Reform?  Tort law is the law that governs civil lawsuits.  Right now the Democratic Party (and quite a few RINOs) as a wholly owned subsidiary of the American Bar Association (read unethical scum and ambulance chasers) are against tort reform (probably because it would be good for the nation).

However reforms like limiting the amounts you can receive for pain and suffering, limiting lawsuits to negligence or the but-for test (where you can sue unless you can prove but for the plaintiff’s actions the defendant would be fine), creating a loser pays system (where the loser has to pay the winner’s legal fees), penalties for ambulance chasers who bring in one frivolous lawsuit after another, and more power for judges to throw out frivolous cases.  Simple things like that.

This may all sound silly, or even pointless.  But take a look at the warning labels on items when you buy them.  An iron that says “Do not use while wearing clothes.”  A hair dryer that says “Do not use in tub.”  A string of Christmas lights that say “For indoor and outdoor use only” (I’m not making that one up…but I really don’t want to know what the use they’re warning you against is). Or “Warning Coffee is Hot” really? The coffee’s hot?  No kidding.  You have to be a f!@#ing idiot to not know that.  Almost all of these are because stupid people used these items in an inappropriate way…and then they sued.  And when the company they sued loses the costs hurt you either by raised prices or fewer employees being hired.  Even when the company doesn’t win, they’ve still lost because of legal fees.  And you still bear the burden of the cost.  All because stupid people also happen to be litigious people (also because lawyers tend to be somewhere on the evolutionary chain below pond scum).

Every state that has engaged in tort reform has seen lower costs, more employment, fewer court costs and more efficient courts, a stimulated economy and more tax revenue. They’ve even seen fewer deaths because doctors aren’t afraid anymore to actually practice medicine.

Tort reform is primarily a state by state issue, and you should see where your state is in terms of tort laws and if you have time try and get  tort reform in your state.  However there are also a few federal issues (as there are federal civil cases) and thus we need some federal reform as well.

But don’t believe me.  Here is a body of op-eds, reports, studies and opinions by people who have done far more research than I.  It all comes to the same conclusion, we need tort reform.

Torture By Tort
The Ninth Circuit Frosts the Lawyers in a Juvenile Cereal Lawsuit
Do’s and Don’ts of Tort Reform
 Big Tort Means Big Problems for US Health Care
Tort Reform in the States 
Tort reform, the right way
Tort Reform in the States: Protecting Consumers and Enhancing Economic Growth
 Does Tort Reform Reduce Health Care Costs?
Tort Reform Saves Lives
 U.S. Tort Liability Index: 2010 Report
Tort Reform Can Lower Costs Without Harming Health Care. So Why Isn’t It in Obama’s Plan?
Subway’s “Footlong” Accused of Coming Up Short

Now in doing this research I found some typical complaints from liberals. I present these stupid arguments with my responses.

1. Most cases aren’t civil lawsuits so this isn’t a problem.

That’s because most companies will settle because they know juries are unreliable and composed of 12 people too dumb to get out of jury duty.  Thus most things that come under the law governed by tort law are handled out of court.

2. Evil corporations want tort reform.

Any time the whole argument is against corporations, you know it’s a BS argument.  Corporations can be good or bad depending on their behavior.  Corporations will actually behave better when only legitimate lawsuits are brought against them and we don’t knee jerk dismiss every lawsuit as the work of an ambulance chaser.

3. Tort reform limits people from receiving their right to a jury trial.  Juries are one of the most basic defenses of a democracy.

First we live in a republic, a system designed on the premise that people are fickle and can be stupid.  And for anyone who wants to plead the intelligence of juries I have two letters for you: OJ.  Juries are a last ditch effort that no one wants, it’s why so many criminal cases are plead out, and so many civil suits dealt with out of court.  Juries are at best unpredictable and at worst consistently illogical and dumb.  They’re trying to make a pointless emotional argument that has nothing to do with facts.

4.  Tort reform will limit the amount that people have a right to when they are harmed by people and corporations.

Um…the only thing I know we want to limit is “pain and suffering” costs.  If you’re a professional athlete and have your body injured by a corporation you could still sue them for loss of income for millions.  But that doesn’t often happen.  It’s pain and suffering judgments that create the most in awards and it’s these that are often the most ridiculous.

5. Injured people will not be able to file suit if we have tort reform.

Actually since there will be fewer frivolous lawsuits from ambulance chasers throwing everything against a wall to see what sticks, people with real cases (but who don’t have sleazy lawyers who know how to work the field) will have a better chance of getting their case heard.

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2 Comments

Filed under Capitalism, Conservative, Constitution, Economics, Long Term Thinking, politics

2 responses to “The Absolute Need for Tort Reform

  1. Pingback: 10 Suggestions to Improve Healthcare After Obamacare is Killed | The Conservative New Ager

  2. Pingback: Why Are American Health Care Costs So High? | The Conservative New Ager

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