As I’ve said in prior posts, I firmly believe Americans can no longer claim we’re “a government of laws not of men” as John Adams, our 2nd US President once pronounced. Adams’ words came to epitomize the venerable “rule of law” in America. In his era, the critical debate was “rule of law” vs. “rule of man.” The prospect that America might become “a government of men not of laws,” is exactly what Adams and our founders feared most, and warned us to stay away from. In their day, “rule of man” referred to the British King George III, who . . . well, just take a look for yourself:
In 1776, the year of our Declaration of Independence, Thomas Paine anonymously wrote a pamphlet titled Common Sense which stated: “in America, the law is king. For as in absolute governments the King is law, so in free countries the law ought to be king; and there ought to be no other.” Adams, a contemporary of Paine, expounded on Paine’s Common Sense, and made sure the Massachusetts Constitution of 1780 included the words “a government of laws not of men.”
In Adams’ and Paine’s day, the King was law, and he served no one except himself. Today, billionaire monopolies are the “King makers.” By purchasing our legislatures, individual judges and elected officials, they bastardize “the rule of law.” Their aim is make America a government of men, not law. This is what happens every day in Latin America, and why we call them “third world.” If we acquiesce, and accept their bastardization of America’s founding premise, we’re right back where we started in 1776. Put another way:
we cannot let this ↓ Continue reading “The Price We Pay For “Pro-Business” Courts”
…and that I know because David Rossmiller said it was in an article he wrote on Plain English for the Spring 2008 issue of the Oregon Association of Defense Counsel.
In a 1985 article about the drafting of State Farm’s anti-concurrent-cause provision, Michael E. Bragg, an in-house lawyer with the insurer, said drafters made attempts to reduce the clause to language the layperson could understand, but they failed. When the drafters made the language understandable to the average person, they considered the language insufficiently precise to do what it was intended to do, which was (1) to contractually overturn the so-called “efficient proximate cause” analysis, a common law default rule that almost all jurisdictions use to analyze first-party property loss in the absence of a different, contractually mandated analysis; and (2) to stop the spread of new, judicially created causes of loss,and confine covered causes of loss only to those that companies intended to insure. This is important to remember because it is the key to the limits of Plain English laws.
As the Bragg article shows, simplified language was unsuitably risky because it did not address the court precedents that insurers wanted to cancel out. It did not contain the terminology and phrases used by the courts, nor did it accurately state the jargon of insurance causation, where words like “concurrent” and “sequential” have meanings far different and more complicated than their meanings in common parlance. Insurers, then, do not write for consumers, they write for courts.
This revelation was written as support for the points Rossmiller makes points questioning the value of Plain English laws for consumer contracts that have been enacted in some 35 states, including Oregon. Continue reading “Anti-concurrent causation intended to contractually overturn efficient proximate cause – according to in-house attorney for State Farm”
Then you gotta wonder about the thought process involved in pushing Leonard lite to the 5th Circuit.
I don’t know if this case involves bad wind-water lawyering or an ornery client but you know they didn’t read Slabbed before wasting time rehashing concurrent causation with Edith Jones.
Since I’m not a lawyer, I really just have one standard and that’s does an argument or decision make sense. A lot of these decisions just don’t. Why?
Judge Helen “Ginger” Berrigan of Louisiana’s Eastern District Federal Court is one judge I had in mind when responding to Chip Merlin’s comment on the need to better educate judges trying Katrina insurance cases.
However, I don’t believe Judge Berrigan needs educating. Instead, it appears she’s contracted the highly contagious strain of 5th Flu that causes Leonard hallucinations and delusions of coverage.
Now, I’m not a doctor either; but, I could tell Judge Berrigan was was coming down with something when I read the Order and Reasons she issued in Adams v Lexington. So, I examined the docket and several of the documents; and, then, I read her history.
Based on what I learned, I suspect she had a natural immunity to the 5th flu as she showed no symptoms of Leonard hallucinations in her reasoning when she threw a wrench into FEMA’s effort at redemption with an order barring FEMA from trying to reclaim some of the money it had thrown at anyone claiming to be a Katrina victim.
In her ruling, Judge Helen Berrigan criticized FEMA for writing notification letters laced with “incomprehensible hieroglyphic abbreviations” and urged the government “to return to their original mandate of alleviating their suffering and focus its substantial powers on continuing to help those entitled to relief.” Continue reading “Judge Ginger Berrigan, Welcome to the infirmary of the SLABBED”