Today's Daily Elysium has to do with a long tradition of frivolous lawsuits. So, I pose the question, has Western culture become to litigious, and should we do something about it?

What about proposed caps on malpractice suits? Should the woman here in Minnesota who was recently diagnosed with cancer, had a radical double mastectomy, and then was informed that they'd mistaken her information for another women, and she did not, in fact, have cancer, be capped at what she can sue for? Or has the wanton litigation made it necessary to protect professionals and businesses from these kinds of stupid lawsuits, even at the expense of valid claims?

I hate lawyers and the way they look to make money. They should only be concerned with the interpretation of laws and not changing them.At the same time, I hate stupidity and think it should be punished.

Good question. Is there a lesser of two evils here? How can you truly punish the stupid/ignorant/non-responceable and not effect the rest of us?

what bothers me is how much money people get out of the companies with this rubbish. I mean seriously where is the point in giving someone 1 million because she is too dumb to drink hot coffee properly.
Besides the point that these lawsuits actually get to court and that judges do not immediatly decline such lawsuits (keyword common sense), the ""victims"" also quite often get a good share of cash for sueing about an occurance that is painfully obvious to everyone with an IQ a little higher than sliced bread (yes coffee is hot when served and no you do not dry dogs in the microwave).

Actually, woman that won the hot coffee case didn''t win because she spilled it in her lap. She won because the coffee was to hot to drink. If she had drank the coffee it would have severely scalded her throat. As a result of that lawsuit, McDonalds now carefully monitors their coffee temperature to ensure that it is at a safe level.

The really obnoxious lawsuit is the one that concluded a few months ago in California. An old woman with lung cancer sued the tobacco companies and won 28 BILLION in punitive damages. Recently an appeals court judge reduced the amount to 28 million. I personally feel that after the states'' class-action suite, all tobacco lawsuits should be thrown out.

I definitely dont agree with the smoking lawsuits despite being a nonsmoker. I cant stand cigarette smoke. However, should we now sue companies that make morphine? You can become addicted to morphine and its detrimental to your health. So, isnt the company responsible for your addiction?

Now I know the crux of the matter is that nicotine is either added to or the natural amount is bolstered in cigarettes. That is a valid distinction. Yet, I feel people need to take responsibility for their own addictions. I mean society is such a cop out these days. Its always somebody or something else made me do it. Everyone wants to play the victim or wannabe martyr.

Well, Fang, a few differences I''m going to point out, though I''m not entirely certain I agree with cigarette lawsuits either. One, morphine has benefits and medical uses ... cigarettes do not. So, I don''t know how well the analogy holds up. Two, the lawsuits don''t really stem from whether cigarettes are bad for you, but whether these companies conspired to defraud and mislead the public, whether they advertised to an illegal market, and whether they broke the law in their business practices. Like I said, I''m not sure I support these lawsuits, but the arguments are more complex than they are sometimes made out to be.

Well, it''s just the obvious result of 50 years of mommies telling their kids ""Do something with your life, be a lawyer!"".

Geez. Thanks mom.

Well i''m sure somebody somewhere has found a beneficial use for nicotene. It is a depressant after all.

So I guess the cigarette lawsuits are akin to class action suits against drug dealers, since they obviously understate the pitfalls and profit from habitual use...

That is rather interesting.

It is a depressant after all.

Actually, it''s a stimulant. Just fyi.

"Elysium" wrote:
It is a depressant after all.

Actually, it''s a stimulant. Just fyi.

Like, oh, I don''t know......Coffee?

Doh! my bad. THC is a depressant. Nicotene is a stimulant.

What do you expect from a non-smoker-toker?

Yes, I am in the severe minority in the Bay Area. The rest of the world has cigarettes, we have joints. Ugh!