ARCHIVE -- AUGUST 2002
August 5-15 --
On hiatus. We'll be taking a break for the next week and
a half or so. While we're away, check out the world's
funniest police log (Arcata, Calif.); the Manhattan
Institute (with which our editor is associated), whose email
announcement list you really ought to be on, and whose Center
for Legal Policy has been publishing a series of important papers on
such topics as asbestos
actions, and forum-shopping;
and of course this site's very own archives,
which date back to July 1999, and which you
can search. See you (more likely
than not) on Friday, Aug. 16. (DURABLE
August 2-4 -- Lawyer's
suit against airline: my seatmate was too fat. "A pretrial
hearing is scheduled in an Ashland attorney's civil lawsuit against an
that sold him a seat next to an obese man. Philip Shafer will meet
representatives from Delta Air Lines Inc. in Ashland Municipal Court at
3:30 p.m. Sept. 19. Shafer seeks $9,500 from Delta. The suit stems
from a two-hour November flight from New Orleans to Cincinnati. Shafer
claims Delta breached its contract to provide him with a full seat and
reasonable comfort because the obese man crowded onto his seat." (Mark
Caudill, "Ashland attorney sues over 'jet jam'", Mansfield, Ohio News
1) (see Dec. 20, 2000).
August 2-4 -- Dense
yet sieve-like. "The INS has no real idea who's within
America's borders. One reason they have no idea is because it takes
them a decade to process a routine green-card application by a highly-employable,
high-earning, law-abiding citizen of America's closest ally." (Mark
Steyn, National Post (Canada), Aug.
1). (DURABLE LINK)
August 2-4 -- Welcome
Fox News viewers/ readers. We suggested on
Tuesday that the media should take a closer look at the tobacco-fee
saga unfolding in the Manhattan courtroom of Justice Charles Ramos, and
Fox News Channel wasted no time stepping into the breach; its news coverage
gave this site's editor generous time on screen to describe the case's
significance. However, none of the lawyers requesting the $13,000/hour
fees were willing to go on camera to defend those fees -- funny about that.
("Tobacco Settlement a Windfall for Lawyers", Fox News, Aug. 1).
And as if that weren't enough publicity for one week, our editor is also
interviewed on camera in a Fox News segment on school
lawsuits (Liza Porteus, "Flunking Out of School? Get a Lawyer", Fox
News, Aug. 2)
August 2-4 -- LexisOne
"Site of the Month". We're one
of the picks for the month of August at the major legal research service's
Legal Web Site Directory. (DURABLE
August 1 -- You
mean I'm suing that nice doctor? When Hazel Norton of
Rolling Fork, Mississippi, read that the drug Propulsid might cause harm,
she stopped taking it and signed up for a lawsuit. "'Actually, I
didn't get hurt by Propulsid,' Norton, who had the drug
prescribed for her heartburn, said. But because she had taken the
drug, she said she thought she could join a class-action lawsuit 'and I
might get a couple of thousand dollars.'
"The last thing she intended, Norton said, was for Kooyer to be sued.
[Dr. Kirk Kooyer, who "arrived in the Mississippi Delta in 1994 to serve
the poor."] 'He's really a good doctor,
very intelligent,' said Norton, who's been Kooyer's patient since 1994.
'He makes you feel so comfortable.'
"She said she intended for the drug company to be sued, but that lawyers
told her it would be better for her case to sue Kooyer in order to keep
the case in Mississippi. After finding out Kooyer had been sued,
she said she wrote a letter to her attorneys, objecting. 'I'm kind
of upset. I do not want him leaving because of all the suits,' she said.
'If we run off all the doctors, what are the people gonna do?' Kooyer was
eventually dropped from the litigation but not before he made up his mind
to leave Mississippi." (Jerry Mitchell, "Tort reform: just what the doctor
ordered?", Jackson Clarion-Ledger, Jul.
29 -- many other good details)(more on Propulsid suits: Oct.
1, 2001; FindLaw).
August 1 -- Sic
'em on Segway. As the Los Angeles Times reported
July 23 (registration process too frustrating to give them a link), one
law firm is already announcing plans to organize lawsuits against Segway
(also known as "It" or "Ginger"), the smart scooter whose backers think
it could revolutionize urban transportation (see Dec.
13, 2001). "We believe that the Segway HT is potentially a legal
nightmare and will be the basis for many lawsuits, both from the corporate
and consumer side," explains the website, which sports the tastefully restrained
name of Sue-It.com and was
put up by a "successful corporate law firm" calling itself the "USA Immigration
Wait a minute. Immigration? Well, that might shed
light on why the "successful corporate law firm" argues its case in language
that sometimes reads as if it has been inexactly translated into English
from a foreign tongue. "We are successful corporate law firm with
offices in Washington, DC and Baltimore named the USAILC. We are
planning to further specialize in new areas associated with suing It [Segway].
... [W]e view the potential onslaught of cases against It as more than
just a basis for strong financial profits. ... Get ready to Sue-It!"
A bunch of wild and crazy guys, no? As for the website
USAILC puts up to promote its major
line of practice, among its first sentences is the following: "The United
States of America Immigration Law Center is the official online home for
US Immigration Legal Matters and Issues" -- which brought us up short since
we had always imagined that "the official" site was this
one. (DURABLE LINK)