I Am Suing My Readers for Disagreeing With Me

I understand that this is a bit of rant rather than the “hard core” politics that we have been covering here. But every now and then I have to just vent, and this is my blog after all. So while I am intensely grateful for all of you who come to read it, I sometimes have to just go my own way and rant. Thank you for indulging me. And besides I did a lot of research tonight for the Cabinet Selections post only to realize that it is too much to make into a post….. and I surely didn’t want to disappoint anyone by not having something for you to wake up to….

I read this morning about another frivolous lawsuit. Some woman claiming that she should have millions because a guy didn’t shovel last night’s snow off his sidewalk before she took Fluffy out for a 6:00 am walk. It seems his negligence caused her to slip and fall, right on top of Fluffy, breaking Fluffy’s tail and leg. I wish I were exaggerating. Then I rode from the dentist’s office where I listened to a horror story about a woman who sued a dentist because the corner of her lip split while he was stretching her mouth open to fix her teeth. 

So I got to thinking. Surely I have been wronged in some way that will enable me to get tons of cash without having had to work for any of it. Then it hit me. I am going to sue all of you. Some will face civil action for disagreeing with me in the comments. Kent and BlackFlag, you guys top that list and I am filing on you guys first. Kent I told the Sheriff to come unarmed with hands in the air so as not to spook you. Others are being sued for agreeing too much with me. You falsely built up my self esteem and let me go out into the world thinking I was smart, it was embarassing. Finally, I am suing everyone who didn’t post any comments for failing to acknowledge my genius and thus ruining the self esteem that those previous folks had taken the time to build. I am going to be rich, rich, rich.

OK, a little more seriously, what happened to this country? How did we get to the point where no one wants to take any personal responsibility at all? Some dumbass goes to a McDonalds, orders coffee, spills it on herself, and sues McDonalds because they had the audacity to actually serve her HOT coffee. She got over 2 million for the record. I get coffee at Dunkin Donuts (the best coffee on the planet) and it is always ridiculously hot. I check it and wait for it to cool off before I drink it…. a little episode of personal responsibility. I am going to cover personal responsibility in another post later so I will not get completely into that here. 

Frivolous lawsuits are a plague upon this nation. Americans have gotten to the point where they don’t even want to earn a quick buck, they want to steal it. And our court systems have let this happen. A couple of points here. Don’t tell me you didn’t know smoking was bad for you so the tobacco companies should pay you millions. Don’t tell me that you thought McDonalds food was healthy so you ate it three times a day for 8 years and they should pay you millions because your ass is now the size of the air pocket between Nancy Pelosi’s ears. And don’t tell me that you superglued your forehead to the desk and the glue company should pay you millions for the embarassment that you have suffered. 

Frivolous lawsuits sure sound funny when you just list them out like that. But every one of those are real. And I know that people think that they are “getting back at the big corporations”, but you aren’t. Every single cost that a corporation incurs is passed on to the consumer through increased pricing. So these lawsuits are doing nothing but driving up costs. They do so even more through indirect means. The things that companies have to do to make everything safe enough so that the stupidest 10% don’t hurt themselves cost companies billions of dollars a year.

We complain about the cost of health care in America…. liability insurance is through the roof in lawsuit happy America. Car insurance, same thing. You get the point. And this is directly in contrast to my solution, which is to let “Darwin’s Laws” whittle down the population a bit. If you are too stupid to not eat razor blades, you should be stopped from breeding rather than given a settlement that eliminates work so that you have more time to spit out more “geniuses”. OK that is a little dramatic, but you get the point. 

The point is that we need to start taking responsibility for our owns lives in this country. If I screw something up and I get hurt because I did it, I just have to look at my mangled self in the mirror every day and say “dumbass”. Buck up America. Have some personal pride and take care of yourself. The age of personal responsibility has to come back.

Now I am going to go feed my cat a quarter and sue the U.S. Mint…..

Comments

  1. SpittinBob says:

    And we are suing you for being an idiot. What is happening with the libertarian platform. I was starting to learn something about your wasted party affiliations

  2. Thanks for the warning about the sheriff. Now I know I will have the drop on him. 😉

    A lawsuit wouldn’t be worth your time. Since my “worth” is somewhere around absolute zero, I’d have to become your butler of something. And I would suck at it. Do you need an anachronism sitting in your retail establishment demonstrating “fire starting”, “brain tanning”, or “knife sharpening”, cuz those things, I could do. Be warned, I come armed and that part is non-negotiable.

    Now, about your point:
    When people see that it is OK to get rich off of other peoples’ money (as politicians demonstrate daily) they get the idea that the same rules must apply to them, and they act accordingly. I doubt that any of them have any illusions that they are “getting back at the big corporations”, though they may claim that for the public’s benefit. It is all about “winning the lottery”.

    Almost every one of those “tragedies” has happened to me at some point, and yet, the thought of suing anyone never occurred to me. I have burned my mouth on hot food/drinks, I have superglued myself to an aquarium light (and had to wait on customers stuck that way until I could slice myself free), I have fallen on ice, I have cut myself on knives, etc. I have not gotten fat or addicted to anything. Yet. But if I do, I will understand it was due to choices I made, not due to advertisements or “supersizing”.

    However, if I were harmed with malice by someone, and violent self-defense were not an option, I would definately consider suing them.

  3. I must say the lawsuit frenzy of this country is retarded. Its sort of like the lottery, only the odds are better. I believe lawsuits to be an important part of the legal system, it allows enforcement of violations such as fraud that actually help the victim, rather than simply punishing the perpetrator. However, there must be a balance. I am not sure what the exact rules and guidelines should be for lawsuits, but I know there needs to be some work done on it. I will have to put some thought into how it should be run…

    Oh, and I guess I will be sued three times, since I have both agreed and disagreed with you, and I have also not commented on some of your posts, especially lately since I just moved and my internet is not up at home… I better get a good lawyer and prepare a good counter-suit for you posting interesting stuff and consuming all of my time reading and preparing responses….

  4. Just a small correction regarding the MacDonald’s law suit.

    She only got $480,000 after appeal. She had offered $250,000 out-of-court, but Macdonald’s refused.

    The issue was not the coffee spill, but the temperature. Macdonald’s coffee was 185 where as most restaurants make it at 145-150. The difference was key – over 150, the water will cause serious burns whereas at 150 or lower, the water will not burn the skin. She was 75 years old, and her skin was already delicate due to age. The scalding seriously injured her, requiring hospitalization. Macdonald’s asserted that the coffee was made for in-restaurant consumption, but their own data showed that 85% of their customers in the morning took the coffee on-the-go.

    There is always more to a story then what the worthless news tells.

    Suing me would be pointless – I have no personal assets of significance. And that is an important strategy – frivolous lawsuits can be a disaster even if you win – the lawyer costs may bankrupt you. It is easier and cheaper to surrender – but only if you have nothing to lose.

  5. BlackFlag says:
  6. Black Flag: You have to be kidding me. Coffee is meant to be hot. Are you really going to argue the semantics of the actual temperature of the coffee? You can say that is the point but that is ridiculous. If you can’t handle the heat, get out of the fire. Just don’t drink the coffee. When will the madness end where people are held accountable for being stupid? Take some accountability people. I would assume that the lady never had any intention of suing McDonalds until someone in her family told her she should do it. That generation would never do something like that.

    And to rebuff your 2nd point, the jury awarded Liebeck $200,000 in compensatory damages. This amount was reduced to $160,000 because the jury found Liebeck 20 percent at
    fault in the spill. The jury also awarded Liebeck $2.7 million in punitive damages. I have included the link in case you care to rebuff again.

    http://www.lectlaw.com/files/cur78.htm

  7. BlackFlag says:

    Hi Jen,

    Finish reading the WHOLE article…

    “The trial court subsequently reduced the punitive award to $480,000 —
    or three times compensatory damages — even though the judge called
    McDonalds’ conduct reckless, callous and willful”

    This is the issue – if other (but not all) restaurants and coffee shops prepare coffee at a SAFER, LOWER temperature – an average person is NOT expecting to be scalded by a spill – they just expect to be annoyed and wet. Had she spilled at Burger King, there would have been no law suit. So the suit is not because it spilled, it is because it unexpectedly harmed.

    Starbucks does prepare their’s as hot – but they expect the coffee drinker to be ‘not driving’.

    Civil cases should (and, honestly, almost always are) be based on expectation – and things out of the ordinary should be highlighted. There are many basic assumptions that you need to make to make it through your day – and that’s ok. Only the EXCEPTIONS need to be highlighted for you to take care. You drive on ‘that road’ every day, so they don’t need to alert you that “The road is the same as yesterday”. They DO need to alert you that the road “is not the same as yesterday”. Exceptions need to be highlighted and MacDonald’s coffee was most certainly an exception – far beyond the norm for ‘in-car consumed’ beverage.

    I had this conversation today regarding ice on the street. Today, if someone fell down on the ice, I doubt there would be a successful lawsuit – because EVERYWHERE there is ice – it is the norm today.

    Tomorrow, most people will chip away the ice. The norm, tomorrow, will be NO ICE. Thus, someone who doesn’t fix their ice may have a successful suit laid against them on a slip-and-fall.

    But let’s be very, very clear.

    The attitude today of lawsuit-mania is not because of any success at trial. It is because today’s (un)justice system has failed in it’s common law heritage. A fair law is one that a common man can understand. Today, even the lawyers and the government have a hard time understanding the law they write!

    Because of the (immoral) complexity, people need the government-controlled monopoly of lawyers. And because of the monopoly, lawyers can demand a whole lot of loot.

    The suit-mania is trying to blackmail out-of-court settlements because the cost of law suits is so terribly high. Most frivolous suits never get past first hearing because they are too stupid – but most don’t want to get to first hearing anyway.

    “First, Kill all the lawyers”, and watch the stupid law suits disappear 🙂

  8. BlackFlag says:

    http://lawandhelp.com/q298-2.htm

    More on the Macdonald’s Case…

  9. “A fair law is one that a common man can understand.”

    I guess that pretty much makes them all unfair after more than a century of government-run schools. 🙂

  10. blackflag2012 says:

    🙂

    Yes, I guess you have to be able to at least read the law…. LoL!

    (Ha! Finally figured out this wordpress site).

  11. BlackFlag,

    I understand what you are saying, but I have to disagree a bit. Regardless of all the other stuff, she spilled the hot coffee on herself. It is unfortunate and it certainly sucks that it was so hot. I feel bad for her. I guess I could have been OK with it had she simply gotten the amount of hospital bills reimbursed. But that case set a bad trend in America. Regardless of anything that McDonalds did that was negligent, and it can be argued that they did plenty, personal responsibility is the key thought for me.

    No matter what you do negligently, in a situation such as this I believe that it is a person’s responsibility to take care of themselves. It is up to me to avoid danger to myself, not up to you to protect me from that danger. Whether that coffee is 10 degrees or a million degrees, the second that I purchased it, it became my responsibility to use it safely. If I buy a can of poison and set it on the work bench in my garage and a child wanders in off the site and drinks it, I will get sued because someone feels it is not each person’s individual responsibility to protect themselves (or in this case the parent’s responsibility because this is not my child).

    I find it difficult to fathom that you, a person that wants individual rights and no government involvement, advocate for this type of control over the environment. We do everything for “safety” in this country because we want to avoid litigation. Imagine the cost decreases if these types of lawsuits went away. Let’s look at the ramifications of this lawsuit. McDonalds has to re-write the SOP in every single store, change the types of cups they serve coffee in to include a big message on the side of the cup saying “HOT COFFEE”, all the court costs and fees, the list gets endless. And the bottom line, all that cost gets passed on to every customer that ever buys a coffee from that day forward. We all pay more for coffee because of her lack of self responsibility.

    We put up multi-thousand dollar railroad crossing gates rather than ask people to just look both ways before going over the tracks. As I believe it was you that pointed out, some country somewhere eliminated traffic lights in a city and let personal responsibility take care of traffic flow. We are catering to the truly dumb. And now we are at the point that when someone breaks into Kent’s house and he shoots them, somehow he is able to sue Kent for shooting him while he was robbing Kent (not that I don’t understand that they wouldn’t be alive to sue you Kent, just making a point here). Or maybe the family will sue Kent for killing their poor dear boy who was just robbing a house and taking what wasn’t his. Lawsuits are out of control, and they have to be stopped and replaced with personal responsibility.

  12. And perhaps you should read the whole article. She eventually settled in a “secret” settlement so no one really knows what she was paid. I imagine that it was substantial.

  13. Kent and BF,

    I don’t think that it is the regular laws that people don’t understand. They understand that they cannot take something that isn’t theirs. It is the insane amount of additional laws for process that are not understood. The processing is the problem, not the law itself.

    And for the record, the Miranda law is stupid. Failing to tell someone that they have the right to not confess and the right to a slick attorney who will help them beat the system should not be grounds to let the confessed criminal go free.

  14. Nice to see that you got your flag added though! Sweet.

  15. But I like mine better

  16. blackflag2012 says:

    I did read the whole thing, USWep, and I was aware of the out-of-court. I do not believe it was substantial – she wanted her hospital bill covered, and I think she got that, and maybe a bit more.

    “Regardless of all the other stuff, she spilled the hot coffee on herself.”

    This is self-evident. However, the spill – on its own – was not the cause of her injuries. It was the ‘dangerous’ water temperature. Expectation is key in this case – and this was unexpected. It is up to the party to inform others if there is danger – the onus is on the party with knowledge to inform those without.

    “I guess I could have been OK with it had she simply gotten the amount of hospital bills reimbursed.”

    That was all she asked for.

    “But that case set a bad trend in America.”

    But that was not her fault.

    It is because of bad reporting, not because of a ‘bad case’. If you have any complaint, it should be the poor news reporting that is epidemic in Main Stream Media globally.

    ” It is up to me to avoid danger to myself, not up to you to protect me from that danger.”

    True – as long as you there is danger. You cannot protect yourself from unknown danger – lest you turn into a paranoid psycho.

    “Whether that coffee is 10 degrees or a million degrees, the second that I purchased it, it became my responsibility to use it safely.”

    You can only ‘safely’ use something when you know its safe. If there exists an unknown danger, how can you possibly use it safely?

    “If I buy a can of poison and set it on the work bench in my garage and a child wanders in off the site and drinks it, I will get sued because someone feels it is not each person’s individual responsibility to protect themselves (or in this case the parent’s responsibility because this is not my child).”

    As you should. It is your responsibility to maintain a reasonably safe environment. If you abandoned the poison or you were inattentive, you do have a responsibility. In your case, though specific pertinent details are missing, we can assume that you know children are in your area and it can be assumed that since they wandered into your area now, they have done so before. Therefore, this risk was not unknown to you. As well, since they survived the other times they entered your property, they could assume that this time would be as safe as the previous times – which it was not, due to your action.

    No more you abandon a running lawn mower in a playground…. if there is an injury, you will – at minimum – be held partly responsible.

    “I find it difficult to fathom that you, a person that wants individual rights and no government involvement, advocate for this type of control over the environment.”

    Control and government? No, but, yes to responsibility.

    It is unreasonable to demand people protect themselves from unknown risks.

    Those that are responsible for creating the risks have a further responsibility to either 1) inform others that such a risk exists or/and 2) protect innocents from such risk.

    The topic of arbitrator – government or private – is not pertinent in this particular discussion. If you’d like to debate which would serve people better – private law or government law – that should be a separate thread.

    “Let’s look at the ramifications of this lawsuit. McDonalds has to re-write the SOP in every single store, change the types of cups they serve coffee in to include a big message on the side of the cup saying “HOT COFFEE”, all the court costs and fees, the list gets endless.”

    Or they could have simply changed their brew policy.

    “And the bottom line, all that cost gets passed on to every customer that ever buys a coffee from that day forward. We all pay more for coffee because of her lack of self responsibility.”

    You may pay more (but I doubt it. I didn’t see any cost increase at all). But you pay extra for seat belts. You pay extra for heavier (hence, safer) cars. You pay extra for flame-retardant clothes. You pay extra for safety – period.

    The question really is, do you want to pay it or not – based on your personal choice. I have no problem with you not wanting seat belts, a tin can for a car, etc. I believe, however, if you are unaware of the danger that is in your presence, and I am the cause of that danger, the onus is on me to inform you and/or protect you from that danger until such a time you can make your own choice on how to proceed. Keeping you ignorant of danger is immoral.

    We put up multi-thousand dollar railroad crossing gates rather than ask people to just look both ways before going over the tracks.

    Yes, because there are many railways that are no longer in use. How can a person know which is which?

    As I believe it was you that pointed out, some country somewhere eliminated traffic lights in a city and let personal responsibility take care of traffic flow.

    Yes, but that did not eliminate personal responsibility when a crash occurred. In fact, that is why it worked – the costs of irresponsibility was high compared to acting responsibly.

    We are catering to the truly dumb. And now we are at the point that when someone breaks into Kent’s house and he shoots them, somehow he is able to sue Kent for shooting him while he was robbing Kent

    Again, the FULL story needs to be told.

    There is a huge difference of Kent shooting someone who is directly threatening him vs. Kent shooting someone in the back as they run away from Kent’s display of force.

    The former, he will not be charged, the latter, he may go to jail for life.

    Self-defense does NOT allow the right to punish anyone. No one has the right to punish another person.

    I like my flag – mine’s independent of country, nationality, creed, religion, culture, language – freedom speaks all languages and lives everywhere for anyone.

    Winston Churchill, in his last speech before he died, ended the speech with
    “Never, never, never, never surrender”. Winston’s grandmother was my great-great-grandmother so he is some sort of cousin of mine.

    I took up this flag a while back. I was contemplating that there are flags and symbols for countries, for causes, for peace, for war, for almost anything but…. what is the symbol of freedom that didn’t involve some sort of nationalistic symbol?

    I asked a very well known libertarian what he thought would be a symbol of freedom – and his response was “What ever is the opposite of surrender”.

    Thus, the flag.

    “Never surrender – no quarter given nor asked”

  17. BF,

    Simply “changing their brew policy” would fall under re-writing their SOP, as I had mentioned. Nothing is ever that simple. Remember, you have to re-write all the SOP’s because a failure to do so is a failure to assume everyone is stupid.

    Your response to the railroad thing is odd. Sure there are ones that no longer operate. If you don’t know that one no longer operates, then you stop and look before crossing. At that point, when the onus is on you rather than the government, you become more careful. It doesn’t matter if there is only one working railroad track in the country. If you don’t know which one it is, then it is YOUR responsibility to check before you cross.

    No child has ever come into my garage before, so no that is not the scenario. In fact almost none of the assumptions you made in telling the whole story is true. That wouldn’t stop a parent for suing me in this country.

    It set a precedent in this country. And maybe she didn’t know it at the time, but the courts did. Our entire legal system is based on precedent. What has been interpreted as true in the past. That is why some cases are “landmark” cases… they set precedent for the future. This one is no different.

    You mention some obscure scenarios such as leaving a mower in a playground, when that is not the point here. The point is that I have to at all times plan for the lowest common denominator of society. If someone is dumb enough to stab themselves with the knife I leave in my car, I am liable for leaving it there. It is your responsibility to teach your child to not drink poison, not my responsibility to live my life in a way that requires me to take every single precaution in case you haven’t done your job as a parent.

    The really interesting thing for me is that this is a departure from your previous directions. You have espoused personal freedom so fervently thus far. Now you take a position that clearly limits my freedoms. Say that we go to the everyone has a gun scenario, how long before the lawsuits begin for the children who pick one up and use it? By taking the personal responsibility out of the equation, which is what you are clearly doing here, we replace it with government sponsored responsibility, which would fly in the face of all your other arguments.

    Toys don’t need warning labels that say parts are small enough for a child to swallow. Toys need parents that check out the toy before giving it to their child. Railroad crossings don’t need gates telling us that the train is coming. They need people taking responsibility to look both ways because they know a train coming would kill them. The lack of traffic control worked only because the the cost of irresponsibility was high when a crash occurred? I submit that the cost of irresponsibility was high for the woman who spilled the coffee, the difference being that in this country we expect everyone to protect us instead of protecting ourselves.

    You use the argument that it is the exception that we have a responsibility to notify everyone of. Why? If we simply become personally responsible, then we will again learn to look for the exceptions on our own, as people did for thousands of years prior to the government being looked to for protection. If I am unaware of the presence of danger, then one of two things is happening: I am being tricked or I am being unaware of my surroundings.

    This isn’t to say there aren’t exceptions, and I am sure you are running through a list of wild scenarios as you read this to come at me with. The point is that the human race survived for thousands of years by exercising personal responsibility, and now we are transitioning into a realm of no one is responsible for their own safety. I don’t see it as the world is required to protect me from danger. It is my job to be aware of my surroundings and protect myself.

    You are right about the Kent scenario, but you oversimplify it. It is a post for another day, however, so I will leave it for now. I am anxious to get your take on the Act VI sections though!

  18. I have my own flag preferences. I don’t care too much for the federal flag.

    If I shoot a robber in my house, I would probably just dump the body somewhere. (in the west, this is called “shoot, shovel, and shut up”) After all, did they leave a note telling their friends they would be at my address? 😉 This avoids “imperial entanglements” and the threat of lawsuits from survivors.

  19. blackflag2012 says:

    “Simply “changing their brew policy” would fall under re-writing their SOP, as I had mentioned. Nothing is ever that simple. Remember, you have to re-write all the SOP’s because a failure to do so is a failure to assume everyone is stupid. “
    I think it is merely a change of policy. I don’t think that is necessarily a sign of stupidity or smartness.
    “ If you don’t know which one it is, then it is YOUR responsibility to check before you cross.”
    I don’t disagree, however, many railway crossing, on their own, are not visible – and if the ‘hit-and-miss’ attitude actually was used, we’d have far more accidents. Preventing accidents is not evil.
    “No child has ever come into my garage before, so no that is not the scenario. In fact almost none of the assumptions you made in telling the whole story is true. That wouldn’t stop a parent for suing me in this country. “
    And they would probably lose – if it got to court – however, we do agree that the lawsuit mania is not about going to court, but forcing out-of-court settlements; like a poker game bluff.
    “It set a precedent in this country. And maybe she didn’t know it at the time, but the courts did. “
    The courts did what was right.
    If the press got the story misinterpreted, that is not the courts, nor her fault.
    Write the editor.
    “Our entire legal system is based on precedent. What has been interpreted as true in the past. That is why some cases are “landmark” cases… they set precedent for the future. This one is no different. “(/i>
    Correct. This court case said that if you increase a risk without informing your customers, you will lose a lawsuit.
    What’s wrong with that?
    “you mention some obscure scenarios such as leaving a mower in a playground, when that is not the point here.”
    It is the point. You made a number of scenarios – and all incomplete. I am allowed, therefore, to complete at will (within reason – as I believe I have), or make up my own.
    Without the FULL STORY, you’re no different then the MSM – nothing but garbage in-garbage out.
    The fact is, the vast, vast majority of frivolous cases are tossed well before trial – but the papers have already done their evil deed in making them front page.
    If you really have any point, it’s the poor reporting by the MSM.
    “It is your responsibility to teach your child to not drink poison, not my responsibility to live my life in a way that requires me to take every single precaution in case you haven’t done your job as a parent. “
    It is, in fact, your responsibility to maintain a safe environment – that is the norm! The assumption, at all times reasonable, is that THIS environment is safe, unless otherwise stated. Yes, it is important to teach children, but that does NOT relieve you of your responsibility whatsoever.
    If by your action, you change this assumption of safety, the onus is ON YOU to inform those whose base assumption is one of safety. We DO NOT GO THROUGH LIFE assuming that all things are dangerous. In fact, we assume the exact opposite, unless otherwise educated.
    If you leave poison – you lock a door. If you set up a knife as a ‘man-trap’ you will be charged.
    The assumption in common law is that the environment is safe, unless otherwise noted. That is reasonable.
    “The really interesting thing for me is that this is a departure from your previous directions. You have espoused personal freedom so fervently thus far.”
    Ah, that is your uninformed position about freedom. Freedom is NOT an abdication of responsibility. In fact, it is the sincere recognition of it – for yourself and for others.
    “ Now you take a position that clearly limits my freedoms.”
    You have no right to make my world more dangerous. You have a right to make YOUR world more dangerous for you – but leave me out of it.
    “ Say that we go to the everyone has a gun scenario, how long before the lawsuits begin for the children who pick one up and use it?”
    If you are irresponsible with a weapon, then you will receive decidedly unpleasant consequences.
    “we replace it with government sponsored responsibility”
    Nonsense.
    Responsibility is independent of government. You can be irresponsible, and still be compliant with government law. Your action is still grossly immoral.
    “Toys don’t need warning labels that say parts are small enough for a child to swallow.”
    Of course they do! Many toys have parts that even with a careful review would not be obvious to a parent to be dangerous to small children.
    “I submit that the cost of irresponsibility was high for the woman who spilled the coffee”
    Just one more time, it was NOT THE SPILL that was the matter of the law suit.
    It was the matter that the temperature was scalding – inconsistent with many other drive-thru coffee places.
    “You use the argument that it is the exception that we have a responsibility to notify everyone of. Why?”
    Because, USWep, if by your action, you’re the one who has changed the norm into the exception, you have the primary knowledge of danger, and reasonably, no one else does. Thus, YOU have to tell everyone that YOU’VE changed the NORM, because only you know that. Everyone else is ignorant about it.
    “ If we simply become personally responsible, then we will again learn to look for the exceptions on our own, as people did for thousands of years prior to the government being looked to for protection.”
    Please explain how I could possibly learn about exceptions that I am ignorant about.
    Again, unless you expect everyone to be paranoid psycho, your demand is impossible.
    We do not, by simple definition, know what we are ignorant about.
    “ If I am unaware of the presence of danger, then one of two things is happening: I am being tricked or I am being unaware of my surroundings. “
    I have setup a man-trap. What part of your awareness would possibly save you, unless I told you?
    I have used a dangerous chemical to clean your clothes. How possibly can you tell? You use a chemistry kit against all your clothes all the time? (etc., etc.)
    So, if by your definition, any creation of danger that I am not aware of is a ‘trick’, how do you expect me to know? So if I’m being ‘tricked’, and it injures me – are you suggesting that I’m still the one at fault?
    “ I am sure you are running through a list of wild scenarios as you read this to come at me with.”
    I find it unnecessary to be wild. There are nearly an infinite number of likely scenarios in my favor. “Bridge out” “Construction ahead” “Bridge slippery when wet”… go for a drive and count….
    “The point is that the human race survived for thousands of years by exercising personal responsibility, and now we are transitioning into a realm of no one is responsible for their own safety.”
    Only in the newspapers. As I said, the vast most of the lawsuits never see court.
    “ It is my job to be aware of my surroundings and protect myself. “
    You cannot protect yourself from unknown risks, no matter what genius you are.

  20. blackflag2012 says:

    I HATE blogs that have no post-edit ability or preview….

  21. Where to start. OK, just so I am clear about this, a change in policy is a change in the SOP. That stands for Standard Operating Procedures, which are the process policies in a business. I don’t understand why you are making that argument, I know you are smarter than that. In a business that size you don’t get to just say “from now on brew at 140 degrees”. You have to change the policies, meaning the SOP. If you don’t do so then when the next person sues you the court will determine that you didn’t do enough to properly inform every employee what the new standard is. Changing that SOP, in writing, will be expensive. And I don’t know where you are buying coffee, but in McDonalds the prices of all menu items have gone up quite a bit since 1992. And you don’t think these types of lawsuits have anything to do with that? What costs that any corporation has to pay in any way are not shifted back to the consumer. I mean do you think that her settlement was just taken out of the CEO’s bonus check?

    No if I am being tricked then you are responsible because you intentionally did harm through deception. If you put a chemical on my clothes you did harm through deception. If you set a man trap you did harm through deception. The key to what you are saying in all of these examples is that you intended to do harm, and should therefore be held responsible.

    It is not my responsibility to make your world safe. I again point to the poison on the shelf. That is my world on my property. I have a reasonable right to assume that no one is going to enter my space and drink a poison that I leave out.

    And you of all people should not make a statement that responsible is independent of government. Responsible is decided in the courts, which as you have pointed out before, are the government. There are limits to how responsible I should have to be to protect you. If you don’t have enough awareness to not do something dumb, that isn’t my fault.

    And I point out again, even though you still seem to think it impossible, that human beings went through thousands of years of history without such reliance on someone to tell them every time something is different from what it was yesterday. They assumed that it might be and took personal responsibility. If they failed to do so there was no one blamed but themselves. You suggest that this would be a world of constant paranoia, yet that wasn’t the case for all of those thousands of years.

    The extent of my responsibility is to assume that whatever I do will be seen or recognized by the normal individual. No I cannot dig a 20 foot hole in the middle of a public road. But I can dig one in my yard. If you come into my yard and assume everything is safe and fun and don’t look out for a hole, that isn’t my fault, that is your negligence.

    Don’t try to make the leap from my assuming that you will exhibit common sense and self awareness to my doing something intentionally meant to hurt someone. If I intentionally make something unsafe or undetectable, that is a whole different ball game altogether, and you are well aware that isn’t what I am talking about, so stop using it as an example. This isn’t about setting up a man trap, as you refer to it. This is about my having to do everything in life under the assumption that no one else is going to protect themselves from stupidity.

    You keep pointing out that the point is that the coffee was brewed too hot. How many millions of people bought coffee from them at that temperature without incident? And that would be because they exercised the self preservation gene to either check it or be careful with it knowing it was hot. They didn’t need to know that it was 185 or 145 or 10 degrees. They assumed hot coffee meant hot coffee.

    How on earth do you expect this country to survive in the anarchist environment that you and Kent discuss if they cannot even keep themselves from being wary of their situation? I am not paranoid, I am simply careful. These frivolous lawsuits wouldn’t exist in that world and I bet that all of the sudden people would become more aware, more responsible, and all of the sudden would find the exceptions on their own. Magic….. just like 200 years ago before signs were planted everywhere and we all assumed that everyone one was smart enough to not drink something they couldn’t identify.

  22. daveeriqat says:

    Well, then, I’m countersuing for your not publishing posts that are 100% compatible with my views. It’s very troubling for me to read opinions that do not concur 100% with my own. Please cease and desist.

    Dave
    http://daveeriqat.wordpress.com/

  23. LOL Dave. I am going over to your site right now to learn what my future positions will be.

  24. blackflag2012 says:

    USWeapon Says:
    Where to start. OK, just so I am clear about this, a change in policy is a change in the SOP. That stands for Standard Operating Procedures, which are the process policies in a business.
    I’m unsure why you think these are so hard to change? It is merely a memo, not an act of war.
    If you don’t do so then when the next person sues you the court will determine that you didn’t do enough to properly inform every employee what the new standard is. Changing that SOP, in writing, will be expensive.
    Expensive, compared to what? It is merely a memo.
    As we’ve already established, anyone can sue for pretty much anything – so claiming that SOP’s are impossible because of such a possible threat is rather a weak argument.
    The fact is, as long as the coffee is ‘too’ hot to be driving with, they will continue to be sued and most likely successfully (as was the case).
    And I don’t know where you are buying coffee, but in McDonalds the prices of all menu items have gone up quite a bit since 1992.
    Macdonald’s corp. earns billions – a few hundred grand is immaterial on its own.
    Inflation and other issues can easily explain the price increase – but, frankly, the actual price increase cause is completely speculative.
    And you don’t think these types of lawsuits have anything to do with that?
    No.
    What costs that any corporation has to pay in any way are not shifted back to the consumer. I mean do you think that her settlement was just taken out of the CEO’s bonus check?
    No, out of some budget – but not necessarily an increase in price to the public. Perhaps the advertising budget got cut by 0.1%….
    No if I am being tricked then you are responsible because you intentionally did harm through deception. If you put a chemical on my clothes you did harm through deception. If you set a man trap you did harm through deception. The key to what you are saying in all of these examples is that you intended to do harm, and should therefore be held responsible.
    A mantrap is not an intention to do harm TO YOU (the general, universal ‘you’). It is an intention to do harm to those that break in to my place. This is why this is a telling example. It requires you, the crook (not you, USwep, of course – the ‘universal’ you) to actually act in evil FIRST.

    Yet, it is incredibly WRONG to do. The primary reason is that you are purposely creating a dangerous environment – not for the ‘bad guys’ – but for innocent people too.
    It is not my responsibility to make your world safe.
    It is your duty to inform me of danger you have created that may effect me.
    I again point to the poison on the shelf. That is my world on my property. I have a reasonable right to assume that no one is going to enter my space and drink a poison that I leave out.
    That is my EXACT POINT, USwep.
    You have an ASSUMPTION – and if you change the environment, BUT MAINTAIN THAT ASSUMPTION – you are at fault, not me.
    You have created an assumption that is no longer true – and seem to hold an opinion that by some miracle my ignorance will be corrected by a guardian angel? No. If you change an expectation (ie: assumption) , you are deemed responsible to inform the ignorant.
    Responsible is decided in the courts, which as you have pointed out before, are the government.
    No, to part one. Who says responsible is decide in court? I hold my own responsibility without any court.
    And, No, to part two. Government has no role in maintaining courts.
    And I point out again, even though you still seem to think it impossible, that human beings went through thousands of years of history without such reliance on someone to tell them every time something is different from what it was yesterday. They assumed that it might be and took personal responsibility.
    This might be ok for a prehistoric human on the savanna where things didn’t change much. They rarely had a ‘Road construction’ sign pop up.
    Wake up to the modern world. Things change constantly, and faster everyday. The assumption, today, is that any change must be noted for the care of others.

    No I cannot dig a 20 foot hole in the middle of a public road. But I can dig one in my yard. If you come into my yard and assume everything is safe and fun and don’t look out for a hole, that isn’t my fault, that is your negligence.
    Yes, you can.
    But if, by ANY MEASURE, it could possibly be thought that someone could enter your yard, (such as a mail man) and fall into your pit, you’re S-O-L.
    That’s the point, USWep. You made an assumption – but ignored reasonable circumstances – which includes your neighbors, the mailman, the meter man, FEDEX, fireman, etc. etc.
    By your assumption that you can do what ever you want, you changed the assumption that people MUST MAINTAIN A SAFE ENVIROMENT UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED.
    You don’t even need to hide it. But that won’t change anything to anyone, when you’re sued by the mailman.
    You keep pointing out that the point is that the coffee was brewed too hot. How many millions of people bought coffee from them at that temperature without incident?
    The fact that millions escaped without injury (or more probably, didn’t bother to sue) MAKES NO DIFFERENCE.
    Take a million shots with your rifle into a city, and hit only one person. Do try to use the argument that you missed 999,999 times before, and therefore, should be not guilty of being unlucky once.
    They assumed hot coffee meant hot coffee.
    There is a difference, isn’t there. There is hot coffee that is “ow! Damn! What a mess” and “ow! Take me to a hospital!”.
    I am simply careful.
    So, are you careful to save yourself, or to avoid lawsuits?
    I am careful – because even if I am in the right and win a law suit, I’m the one still suffering in the hospital – or worse, dead. I’d rather be not suffering and happily alive – period.\
    I take actions to protect myself – not to enhance or avoid lawsuits.
    However, I cannot function daily trying to predicate and avoid things I do not know. It is impossible. No normal person can survive otherwise. Therefore, we depend tremendously on notices, alerts and information regarding the CHANGES TO OUR NORM, which also includes our assumptions.
    We assume our water is safe. Do you test it hourly, USWep? I doubt it.
    We assume our food is safe. Do you test it every meal, USWep? I doubt it.
    So if the water becomes foul – is it your opinion that the water company is ok not telling you, because – hey – you’re a smart guy, and can take care of yourself, right?
    So if the food is poison – is it your opinion that the restaurant is ok not telling you, because – hey – you’re a smart guy, and can take care of yourself, right?
    These frivolous lawsuits wouldn’t exist in that world and I bet that all of the sudden people would become more aware, more responsible, and all of the sudden would find the exceptions on their own.
    First, there were frivolous ‘lawsuits’ 200 years ago – they were handled differently in a different time.
    Ever hear of the “Witch Hunts”? Don’t fall into a trap that today is much different than other times – simply the tool has changed.
    And, drinking stuff they couldn’t identify??? (gasp) Guess you didn’t know that the health elixirs of the past used mercury and cocaine as their core mix – or worse, and killed hundreds.
    Yes, your post is correct – there is a current (and mostly successful) gamble of suing frivolously.
    It is NOT the fault of the people.
    It IS the fault of the monopoly on justice. By making defending one’s self from law is so expensive – even if you are right, it is prohibitive. Therefore, the bet that you will fold a winning hand is very high.
    Eliminate the root – cost of legal defense – and the problem will evaporate overnight.

  25. blackflag2012 says:

    …and I HATE a blog that can’t do a preview…

  26. blackflag2012 says:

    ..so you know that I like the conversation to put up with this stunted blog host…

  27. When wordpress gives me the ability to do a preview I will certainly ensure that you have the ability to do so!

    A couple of points where you erred on what my point was. I will address better later when I have some time. The 999,999 argument was not where I was going. The point was that 999,999 people took personal responsibility to check their coffee. I didn’t say it was a license to do wrong, I merely pointed out that people can survive on their own.

    If they drank a “health potion” laced with cocaine, they didn’t sue. They understood that they drank something that they didn’t know the contents of.

    I am glad that you believe that costs are not shifted to the consumer and are instead taken out of an advertising budget. But I think that in believing so it is you that are living a dream. Corporations aren’t that silly. They pass every possible cost to the consumer. There may be a company here or there that doesn’t, but they are the exception.

    As I said I will be back to this as soon as I can, but I will leave you with this. I find your stance in direct opposition to what you have espoused in the past. I have no personal freedom at all if I have to take every action with everyone else in mind of what I do. I can’t dig a hole in my yard without taking several other actions to protect any yahoo that might walk into my yard. I can’t leave a chemical on my counter without assuming that someone might come into my home and drink it. I do live in the modern world and have modern considerations for my thoughts. But when we reach the point where every change I make to the world must be documented and have posted warnings or else I am liable, I am not free. In the “free world” that you and Kent put forth, how can this possibly be the case? Who will enforce all of these “rules”? There wouldn’t be a government. Who would set a standard? At what point would you be free to do “whatever you like so long as it does not infringe on the rights of others”? It seems like the kind of world you would like in those conversations and the kind of world you claim is right in this conversation are at odds with each other.

  28. Oh and to finish what I was saying about the “health potions”, there is a big difference between being told “this is good for you, drink it” and finding a random bottle and picking it up and taking a drink. They didn’t do that. You know that was what I meant so don’t try to confuse the issue.

  29. I would assume that in a free society anyone would be free to sue anyone for any reason. This comes with some huge “however”s.

    The loser would probably always have to pay the entire cost of the suit, including the expenses of the winner’s side. You would have to be able to find an arbitration company that would agree to conduct the suit, which if frivolous would damage their reputation. If a jury was desired, there would be no justification for “voir dire” (“legal jury tampering”) in a free society, and any “courts” that tried it would go out of business. Any person who brought too many lawsuits would find himself unable to find anyone willing to engage in any interactions with him. Remember the possibility of “feedback”.

    The flipside is that any person who was constantly being sued for negligent behavior might find himself ostracized as well.

    Once again, personal responsibility would be encouraged.

  30. blackflag2012 says:

    USWeapon Says:
    Where to start. OK, just so I am clear about this, a change in policy is a change in the SOP. That stands for Standard Operating Procedures, which are the process policies in a business.

    I’m unsure why you think these are so hard to change? It is merely a memo, not an act of war.

    If you don’t do so then when the next person sues you the court will determine that you didn’t do enough to properly inform every employee what the new standard is. Changing that SOP, in writing, will be expensive.

    Expensive, compared to what? It is merely a memo.

    As we’ve already established, anyone can sue for pretty much anything – so claiming that SOP’s are impossible because of such a possible threat is rather a weak argument.

    The fact is, as long as the coffee is ‘too’ hot to be driving with, they will continue to be sued and most likely successfully (as was the case, since Macdonald’s was successfully sued again for the same reason).

    And I don’t know where you are buying coffee, but in McDonalds the prices of all menu items have gone up quite a bit since 1992.

    Macdonald’s corp. earns billions – a few hundred grand is immaterial on its own.

    Inflation and other issues can easily explain the price increase – but, frankly, the actual price increase cause is completely speculative.

    And you don’t think these types of lawsuits have anything to do with that?

    No.

    What costs that any corporation has to pay in any way are not shifted back to the consumer. I mean do you think that her settlement was just taken out of the CEO’s bonus check?

    No, out of some budget – but not necessarily an increase in price to the public. Perhaps the advertising budget got cut by 0.1%….

    No if I am being tricked then you are responsible because you intentionally did harm through deception. If you put a chemical on my clothes you did harm through deception. If you set a man trap you did harm through deception. The key to what you are saying in all of these examples is that you intended to do harm, and should therefore be held responsible.

    A mantrap is not an intention to do harm the general public. It is an intention to do harm to those that break in to your place.

    This is why this is a telling example.

    It requires the crook to actually act in evil FIRST.

    Yet, it is incredibly WRONG to do. The primary reason is that you are purposely creating a dangerous environment – not for the ‘bad guys’ – but for innocent people too.

    It is not my responsibility to make your world safe.

    It is your duty to inform me of danger you have created that may reasonably effect me.

    I again point to the poison on the shelf. That is my world on my property. I have a reasonable right to assume that no one is going to enter my space and drink a poison that I leave out.

    That is my EXACT POINT, USwep.

    You have an ASSUMPTION – and if you change the environment, BUT MAINTAIN THAT ASSUMPTION – you are at fault, not me.

    You have created an condition in contradiction to our assumption (that is no longer true) – and seem to hold an opinion that by some miracle my ignorance will be corrected by a guardian angel?

    No. If you change an expectation (ie: assumption) , you are deemed responsible to inform the ignorant.

    Responsible is decided in the courts, which as you have pointed out before, are the government.

    No, to part one. Who says responsible is decide in court? I hold my own responsibility without any court.

    And, No, to part two. Government has no role in maintaining courts.

    And I point out again, even though you still seem to think it impossible, that human beings went through thousands of years of history without such reliance on someone to tell them every time something is different from what it was yesterday. They assumed that it might be and took personal responsibility.

    This might be ok for a prehistoric human on the savanna where things didn’t change much. They rarely had a ‘Road construction’ sign pop up in the middle of the plains.

    Wake up to the modern world. Things change constantly, and faster everyday. The assumption, today, is that any change must be noted for the care of others.

    No I cannot dig a 20 foot hole in the middle of a public road. But I can dig one in my yard. If you come into my yard and assume everything is safe and fun and don’t look out for a hole, that isn’t my fault, that is your negligence.

    Yes, you can dig your hole – as deep as you want 😉

    But if, by ANY REASONABLE CIRCUMSTANCE, it could possibe that someone could enter your yard, (such as a mail man) and fall into your pit, you’re S-O-L.

    That’s the point, USWep. You made an assumption – but ignored reasonable circumstances – which includes your neighbors, the mailman, the meter man, FEDEX, fireman, etc. etc.

    By your assumption that you can do what ever you want, you changed the assumption that most people hold, that is, you MUST MAINTAIN A SAFE ENVIRONMENT UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED.

    This why people post “Beware of Dog” – “Caution – Ice” “Caution – Broken Cement”, etc. – even if they don’t expect anyone to enter – because they can’t anticipate EVERY instant of reasonable entry.

    You don’t even need to hide the hole to be grossly negligent… you will still be sued by the mailman even if the hole was uncovered.

    You keep pointing out that the point is that the coffee was brewed too hot. How many millions of people bought coffee from them at that temperature without incident?

    The fact that millions escaped without injury (or, more probably, didn’t bother to sue if it did spill) MAKES NO DIFFERENCE.

    Take a million shots with your rifle into a city, and hit only one person.

    Do try to use the argument that you missed 999,999 times, and therefore, should be not guilty of being unlucky once.

    They assumed hot coffee meant hot coffee.

    There is a difference, isn’t there.
    There is hot coffee that is “ow! Damn! What a mess” and “ow! Take me to a hospital!”.

    I am simply careful.

    So, are you careful to save yourself, or to avoid lawsuits? What is your motivation?

    I am careful – because even if I am in the right and win a law suit, I’m the one still suffering in the hospital – or worse, dead. I’d rather be not suffering and happily alive – period.

    I take actions to protect myself – not to enhance or avoid lawsuits.

    However, I cannot function daily trying to guess and avoid things I do not know. It is impossible. No normal person can survive otherwise.

    Therefore, we depend tremendously on notices, alerts and information regarding the CHANGES TO OUR NORM, which also includes our assumptions.

    We assume our water is safe. Do you test it hourly, USWep? I doubt it.

    We assume our food is safe. Do you test it every meal, USWep? I doubt it.

    So if the water becomes foul – is it your opinion that the water company is ok not telling you, because – hey – you’re a smart guy, and can take care of yourself, right?

    So if the food is poison – is it your opinion that the restaurant is ok not telling you, because – hey – you’re a smart guy, and can take care of yourself, right?

    These frivolous lawsuits wouldn’t exist in that world and I bet that all of the sudden people would become more aware, more responsible, and all of the sudden would find the exceptions on their own.

    First, there were frivolous ‘lawsuits’ 200 years ago – they were handled differently in a different time.

    Ever hear of the “Witch Hunts”?

    Don’t fall into a trap that today is much different than other times – simply the tool and method has changed.

    Even Solomon suffered having to deal with a frivolous lawsuit determining a baby’s mother. Every age and every time…. no change except the methodology.

    And, drinking stuff they couldn’t identify??? (gasp) Guess you didn’t know that the health elixirs of the past used mercury and cocaine as their core mix – or worse, and killed hundreds.

    Yes, your post is correct – there is a current (and mostly successful) gamble of suing frivolously.

    It is NOT the fault of the people.

    It IS the fault of the monopoly on justice. Defending one’s self from the law is so expensive – even if you are right, it is prohibitive and threatens to bankrupt you.

    Therefore, the bet that you will fold a winning hand is very high.

    Eliminate the root – cost of legal defense – and the problem will mostly evaporate overnight.

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