Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Blame it on "Big" Anything

Missed this story yesterday.


Before I start on this, let me lay forth my views on product liablity insofar as guns are involved.

If I purchase a firearm and it discharges unintentionally while I am safely handling it, that is a defective product. If the gun is aimed at a convenience store clerk and the trigger is squeezed and the gun goes off, that is what the product was designed for. I think you have a better product liability case if your rob a store and intend to fire a warning shot into the ceiling, but the firearm does not discharge. That's what it was supposed to do but it didn't.

To be fair, this NYT article is relatively unbiased, it's just the topic is so asinine.

...New York City's landmark case that claims the firearms industry is responsible for gun crimes...

No reason, no justification, just swallow it. Understand?

The lawyer who is to head Thelen Reid's trial team, Michael S. Elkin, said yesterday that one reason for the decision to help the city was his firm's support for public interest legal efforts aimed at preventing gun violence.

Now, post-facto, I have never understood petty retribution as an effective means of prevention. By making Smith & Wesson his whore, he is going to save an entire generation of victims, right. Plaintiff lawyers don't prevent anything; they profit from the suffering of others. And it's not morality, it's money; whoever has the fattest wallet you go after (but make sure to name everyone else in the suit, just in case you have to settle for chump change.)

That commitment, he said, began with 10 partners from its West Coast offices who worked at Petit & Martin, a San Francisco law firm where a gunman opened fire in a 1993 shooting spree that killed eight people and wounded six others.

No comment.

A trial of the city's civil case is scheduled in Brooklyn federal court in April. The city seeks an injunction reforming the industry's sales and marketing practices, which it claims allow guns to pass too easily into the hands of criminals and create a public nuisance.

One of the most highly regulated consumer products and NY needs to reform it. I shouldn't be surprised, there's a tuna can scratch that's going to be before the US Supreme Court. http://news.yahoo.com/news?tmpl=story&u=/ap/20041012/ap_on_go_su_co/scotus_tuna_lawsuit_3

Star-Kist has been producing tuna in can packaged for decades. Manufacturers have been making guns that fire bullets for centuries. Your call.

They basically round up with this:

Yesterday, the lead lawyer on the case at the city's Law Department, Eric Proshansky, said it had been difficult to find another firm to help the city after Weil, Gotshal dropped out. He said many major firms "would say something like, 'We have clients that don't like this sort of thing.' ''
"They were gotten to by people, obviously, with an agenda,'' Mr. Proshansky added

Sounds pretty sinister, but it's the same tired playbook. If we can rob the manufacturer's money, the cost of guns will continue to increase. And, at a certain point, scrubs like me won't be able to afford it. Problem solved.

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