Saturday, February 19, 2005

Torts Lose

The bill that has passed Congress and been signed by the President is hardly the end of class-action lawsuits but does seem to be a step in the right direction. Listening to a little 'left' commentary from places such as NPR one would think, though, that we have unleashed corporate America from all restraints and accountability. Even on the local level there have been attorneys interviewed who claim that the move is one intended to harm the average person.

When our legal system has become one where certain courts are deemed 'friendly' to certain types of lawsuits, and when attorneys can choose to file their "cases" in these courts rather than their local courthouse, then Houston, we have a problem. If a company like Ford knowingly equipped vehicles with bad tires then people should be reimbursed or awarded damages. But when problems are being manipulated and lawyers are getting rich while people are getting a couple of bucks or some discount coupons, only the legal guys are winning.

This is a step in the right direction. Another move that has to take place is one to curtail medical liability. When physicians can't afford to practice medicine (especially certains types in certain states) then adjustments have to come. Insurance agencies are winning, lawyers are winning, and doctors and patients are losing. The legal beast is making prey of the system. Insurance premiums are out the roof. The left wants socialized medicine. Bad answer. (Actually, not really an answer at all.) I think the tort reform that has just passed is one step that will eventually make other steps (like the one concerning the practice of medicine) more reasonable.

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