Skip to main content

View Diary: John Edwards, Trial Lawyers, and McDonald's Coffee (223 comments)

Comment Preferences

  •  Nice review (none)
    But we can't win this argument.  Trial lawyer here - but full disclosure - I generally represent big bad corporations - in IP, antitrust and Media matters.  No product liability.

    So don't stone me.

    "We're not criticizing Bush for going after terrorists, we're criticizing him for NOT going after terrorists." - Wes Clark (hopefully in the future J. Kerry)

    by Armando on Sun Aug 01, 2004 at 03:17:45 PM PDT

    •  Like Another Issue We've Discussed... (4.00)
      ...I'm not of the belief that we have to "win" every issue.  Many issues we will win--economy, jobs, healthcare, just about every social issue--while others we can be content, in terms of getting K/E elected, with preventing a defeat, or even a rout.  The "greedy trial lawyer" trope won't be eradicated in the next ninety days, no.  But if we can't blunt their attacks where we're not as strong, that makes the attacks on their weaknesses even more devastating.

      The trial lawyer crap--or to be more accurate, the plaintiff's lawyer crap--isn't a major theater of this fall's battle.  To use a WWII analogy, it's kind of the Burma of this conflict.  But we don't want to let the Bushies' get any easy victories, because we want to at least fight them to a draw and hopefully a victory on the trustworthiness of the Dems to be stewards of our national security and to protect us from foreign and terrorist threats.  To do that, and to maximize our strengths on just about every other issue, we need to try to prevent serious damage on the peripheral issues that the Bushies are going to try to raise between now and November.

      •  Ok (none)
        Agreed.  Don't get your hopes up on this one though.

        "We're not criticizing Bush for going after terrorists, we're criticizing him for NOT going after terrorists." - Wes Clark (hopefully in the future J. Kerry)

        by Armando on Sun Aug 01, 2004 at 03:49:33 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I agree (none)
          I think a better approach would be to point out that all trial lawyers aren't the same, that Edwards had nothing to do with the frivolous lawsuits we sometimes hear about, and that he's won money for helpless kids disembowelled by known-defective products.  It was a classic case of CEO's trying to skimp on a little money and ignoring the danger to real people.

          And then, if you feel like it, get into a discussion about the coffee case.  But don't play their game, trying to defend Edwards by debunking a meme that he can't be tied to in the first place.

          Visit the Diary of the Lying Socialist Weasels, for commentary from the Original Progressive Web Warriors!

          by Jonathan on Sun Aug 01, 2004 at 04:34:21 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  It's a Defensive Argument (none)
            Nowhere did I or would I suggest people initiate discussion of this case, or trial lawyer stuff in general.  The issues of this election are the economy, the war, and who's best suited to be a responsible and serious leader on behalf of all Americans.  But if somebody else raises this case, we should come back at them, and come back at them hard.

            I didn't say we should tie Edwards to this story, it's the Republicans who are going to do that.  

            •  True enough, but (none)
              I think it's smarter to simply say the Republicans are off, rather than try to confront the coffee myth head-on.

              "Edwards has never been a party to a frivilous lawsuit.  He's been concentrating on helping children mutilated by companies out to make an extra buck.

              "I have no idea what the Republicans are babbling on about coffee for, but it looks like they could care less about hurt kids..."

              Visit the Diary of the Lying Socialist Weasels, for commentary from the Original Progressive Web Warriors!

              by Jonathan on Sun Aug 01, 2004 at 04:59:12 PM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  When You Lose A Child... (4.00)
        I suspect that the death of John Edwards' son was the catalyst that prompted his shift from trial lawyer to politician. Certainly the death of a child often has a profound impact on a parent.

        Some insight into my own case might be gleaned from my recent letter to our local editor.

        DEAR EDITOR: When you lose a child, there are just some things you can't do
        anymore. You can't get a tattoo, for example, because someone else's child
        might need your blood platelets to fight his cancer and you've learned the
        hard way that people with tattoos can't donate platelets.

        Of course, you can't refuse to donate blood because now you know children
        with cancer need gallons of blood. While you could attend graduation
        ceremonies, you tend to avoid them in order not to be reminded that your
        child missed his. You can't work on the family tree any longer because it's
        just too painful to look at that one branch knowing it will never grow.

        You can't even summon the energy to update your last will and testament,
        because all those things that you were going to leave your child must now go
        elsewhere.

        And because you know the extreme heart ache that comes with losing your
        child, you just can't support a president that sends other people's children
        to die for his lies.

        You just can't wish that burden on another parent and you can't understand
        why every other parent doesn't feel the same way.

        http://www.mdjonline.com/articles/2004/07/20/270/10150660.txt

        "A society of sheep must in time beget a government of wolves."

        by skeptic tank on Sun Aug 01, 2004 at 04:20:47 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Edward's entry into politics and son's death (none)
          I read in Newsweek that the friend who accompanied John Edwards to the hospital where his son's body was taken, recalls Edwards saying that he had to do something to make his son's death worth the cost.  The article also said that the son had been urging his father to enter politics, so that's what he did.  A varient on the "work is prayer" theme.  I don't believe in the hand of God in human affairs, but certainly the Edwards found strength to surmount this tragedy.

          Skeptic Tank,
          Your letter sounds like your loss is recent.  Please accept my deepest sympathy.

        •  Thanks for (none)
          a very moving and powerful letter.  I'm so sorry for your loss.

          "Often it does seem a pity that Noah and his party did not miss the boat." (Mark Twain)

          by cinnamondog on Sun Aug 01, 2004 at 09:41:19 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

    •  Well you do know (4.00)
      That Bush doesn't have any problem with your work. It's the plaintiffs' lawyers they don't like.

      And of course, there's nothing wrong with what you do. Who needs lawyers more than the big corporations? Hey, I was a summer associate at McConnell last summer, it's interesting stuff. The hours are awful, though. No wonder you're always around, you're used to not sleeping. :)

      •  You were? (none)
        Did you do any work with me?  Do you know who I am?

        "We're not criticizing Bush for going after terrorists, we're criticizing him for NOT going after terrorists." - Wes Clark (hopefully in the future J. Kerry)

        by Armando on Sun Aug 01, 2004 at 03:59:00 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I don't think so (none)
          I'm not great with names. But no, I don't think I worked with you. A friend of mine is starting this year though, Roberto Colon, at Corporate Dept. Small world!  
          •  Are you not coming back (none)
            and if so why?  We are a great place, mostly.

            And if you do litigation, I can promise you interesting stuff.

            Sorry folks, for doing a little recruiting here.  

            "We're not criticizing Bush for going after terrorists, we're criticizing him for NOT going after terrorists." - Wes Clark (hopefully in the future J. Kerry)

            by Armando on Sun Aug 01, 2004 at 04:15:30 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Not to a law firm at least (none)
              Well, I didn't get an offer to McConnell. And with good reason, I just don't think it's my thing. I plan to try and find something to do for a while in PR but I want to go into intl work. I want to take an entrance exam to the UN system, maybe human rights. I was actually looking to get into the Foreign Service, but didn't pass the first exam, to move to an interview. (I really need to work on my US History.)

              Couldn't help but look at your profile. Hope you don't mind. Clorox is obviously the most important case... but I have to admit the Dayanara name caught my attention first. Definitely some interesting stuff. Thanks for asking!

            •  Oh (none)
              and I do think the firm is great. Lots of fascinating people, it deals with the biggest companies in the Island.

              And the food you guys give the associates!! I've never eaten so well in my life. The paella at Bruno's house was amazing.

              •   Good (none)
                As I said, keep us in mind, if you rethink what you want to do.

                "We're not criticizing Bush for going after terrorists, we're criticizing him for NOT going after terrorists." - Wes Clark (hopefully in the future J. Kerry)

                by Armando on Sun Aug 01, 2004 at 04:52:53 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

        •  I've always believed (none)
          that no one should make enemies in Puerto Rico. The place is too damn small. I think we have three degrees of separation instead of the usual six.
          •  Absolutely (none)
            But sometimes it can't be avoided.  Anyway, I like to hear what you thought if you want, e-mail me privately.  I'm the only Armando in the firm. (which is pretty surprising.)

            "We're not criticizing Bush for going after terrorists, we're criticizing him for NOT going after terrorists." - Wes Clark (hopefully in the future J. Kerry)

            by Armando on Sun Aug 01, 2004 at 04:17:27 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

          •  Abelardo Ruiz Suria (none)
            I don't if you knew him, but one of the great gentleman and attorneys of the Firm.

            He passed away today.  Q,E.P.D.

            A tremendous loss.

            "We're not criticizing Bush for going after terrorists, we're criticizing him for NOT going after terrorists." - Wes Clark (hopefully in the future J. Kerry)

            by Armando on Sun Aug 01, 2004 at 04:28:02 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  Woof! Now I know why you drive me wild, Armando (none)
      The masochist in me has always been attracted to the slimy lowest common denominator. Damn, now all I'm gonna think whenever I see your comments is, "How I wish Armando would screw me over. <swoon>"

      "Strength and wisdom are not opposing values" ~ The Big Dawg

      by John Campanelli on Sun Aug 01, 2004 at 04:53:21 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Flattery will get you (none)
        everywhere John. Vain is my middle name.  Like I say, I thought the song was about me.

        "We're not criticizing Bush for going after terrorists, we're criticizing him for NOT going after terrorists." - Wes Clark (hopefully in the future J. Kerry)

        by Armando on Sun Aug 01, 2004 at 04:57:57 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  I'd still like to stone you (none)
      for the IP stuff.

      Though I'm sure you're not with the RIAA, MPAA or SPA, so you're probably not evil.

      But that's another topic.

      GWB: The buck stops across the street and down a coupla blocks...

      by permanentE on Sun Aug 01, 2004 at 07:04:41 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  OT: What do you make of Laurence Lessig? (none)
      As a professional IP attorney, what do you make of Lessig's work to reduce copyright terms, blunt the onslaught of DRM (Digital Rights Management hardware), and expand the public domain on the grounds of promiting entrepreneurial innovation, free speech, and scientific discovery? What do you make of his arguments that current IP law stifles innovation through the creation of long-lived artificial monopolies? Did you read the Eldridge case he argued before the Supreme Court? Your opinion of his logic chain and conclusions (also the SCOTUS decision against him)?

       I don't doubt his success would damage your wallet, but what do you make of his arguments? This is an honest question asked for an expert opinion. I won't argue my opinion back, I'm just curious what you have to say.

      Thanks,
      --Maynard

      "People ask, why don't Democrats stand up? Well that's like asking why don't Jellyfish stand up? They're invertebrates." - Greg Palast, C-SPAN 5/5/04

      by maynard on Sun Aug 01, 2004 at 08:07:27 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Complicated issue (none)
        I'll tell you what.

        I'm multitasking now trying to settle a case.  Later tonight I'll post a diary on it.

        To stir the pot now, i'll tell youthat I largely disagree with him.  I'll tell you why later tonight.

        "We're not criticizing Bush for going after terrorists, we're criticizing him for NOT going after terrorists." - Wes Clark (hopefully in the future J. Kerry)

        by Armando on Sun Aug 01, 2004 at 08:26:49 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Thanks a bunch! (none)
          I'm sure it will be a fascinating read. It's very kind of you to take time to write your expert opinion on this contentious matter. I think the Dems are going to have to face up to rising public pressure against these trends, with the IP industries among their major campaign benefactors forcing a difficult decision between constituents' vs. campaign contributors' demands. It will be a tough call for congressional Dems. I may post a dissent from a layperson's perspective in your diary (as I'm sure you can gather my perspective here), but will do so out of no disresprect to you or your profession.  --M

          "People ask, why don't Democrats stand up? Well that's like asking why don't Jellyfish stand up? They're invertebrates." - Greg Palast, C-SPAN 5/5/04

          by maynard on Sun Aug 01, 2004 at 08:48:49 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Maynard (none)
            If you haven't noticed I LOVE to pontificate.  My pleasure.  And don't take it easy on me - give me your best shots.

            "We're not criticizing Bush for going after terrorists, we're criticizing him for NOT going after terrorists." - Wes Clark (hopefully in the future J. Kerry)

            by Armando on Sun Aug 01, 2004 at 09:22:50 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

  • Recommended (148)
  • Community (65)
  • Elections (43)
  • Civil Rights (38)
  • 2016 (32)
  • Culture (32)
  • Baltimore (28)
  • Law (27)
  • Economy (27)
  • Texas (27)
  • Bernie Sanders (26)
  • Environment (26)
  • Hillary Clinton (24)
  • Labor (23)
  • Rescued (21)
  • Health Care (20)
  • Barack Obama (20)
  • Republicans (18)
  • Freddie Gray (17)
  • International (17)
  • Click here for the mobile view of the site