Supreme Court Follows The Law
Twice In A Single Day!
Justices Curb Class Actions
by Jess Bravin & Ann Zimmerman - June 20th, 2011 - Wall Street Journal
The Supreme Court threw out a sweeping sex-discrimination lawsuit against Wal-Mart Stores Inc., ruling Monday that the 1.6 million women allegedly victimized had too little in common to form a single class of plaintiffs.
The case split the court 5-4 along its ideological divide, with Justice Antonin Scalia's majority opinion concluding the allegations against Wal-Mart were too vague and the evidence too weak to establish the common injury essential to encompass all women employed since 1998 in the roughly 3,400 U.S. Wal-Mart stores.
What is truly scary is that a bare majority of the justices thought it appropriate to limit class actions law suits to the criteria on which they have been permitted under the laws the legislature passed permitting them. After all, any limit denies lawyers the vehicle by which they destroy businesses operating under the concept of free markets. Nearly half the court still desires to destroy that freedom.
A Slightly better outcome in another trial happened on the same day, so perhaps it was a good day after all.
... And the Climate Tort Cashiered
Editorial - June 20th, 2011 - Wall Street Journal
Yesterday's other important Supreme Court decision (see above) came in a case that joined the green lobby and the trial bar, if that isn't redundant. The Court unanimously struck down one of the legal left's most destructive theories, and not a moment too soon.
In American Electric Power v. Connecticut, eight states and various other environmental activists sued a group of utilities, claiming that their carbon emissions were a "nuisance" under federal common law and that therefore the courts should set U.S. global warming policy. Yet this is a fundamentally political question, one the Constitution reserves to Congress and the executive, as Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg wrote for the 8-0 majority.
The Wall Street Journal Editorial board actually gushed "Justice Ginsburg's finest hour." I can't say I would go that far but the 8-0 victory is certainly encouraging. Perhaps the fact that the vast majority of Americans now hold the court system in contempt is starting to seep through the thick skulls of these judicial oligarchs.
If that happened they may stop arrogantly legislating from the bench as they realize that their unelected life time jobs are not so secure when the people despise them. Their cushy service could end in severe reprisals by people who resent their tyranny.