Last week, Senior Vice President and General Counsel for the National Association of Manufacturers Linda Kelly published a convincing article on the consequences of aggressive, deceitful, and self-serving lawsuits by unscrupulous trial lawyers against American manufacturers.
By painting their cause as environmental justice, these plaintiffs’ lawyers have steered activists, workers, and public opinion towards deleterious outcomes for the American consumer, with little benefit to the environment but a mountain of attorney’s fees.
Kelly breaks the false dichotomy spun by these abusers, that, “we cannot have a strong American manufacturing base and an improved environment.” Instead, she factually asserts that the U.S. has reduced more greenhouse gases than any other nation on Earth during sustained domestic manufacturing growth.
An example of the nature of many of these lawsuits includes an attempt in 2008 by trial lawyers to capitalize on manufacturers for making and selling gas to an Alaskan town for their cars and electricity to heat their homes. Though these attempts have been thwarted at every level of federal judiciary, this litigious culture continues to sue businesses.
Kelly ends the piece with the following moving statement:
Frivolous lawsuits instigated by plaintiffs' lawyers like Pawa and his firm and politically motivated investigations are more than just a distraction.
Manufacturers' jobs are on the line when lawyers run up litigation costs that can't go into a worker's paycheck. And every dollar spent defending against meritless attacks is a dollar not spent on innovation and game-changing revolutions that make our world healthier and communities safer.
If this effort to scapegoat the responsible production of the lifeblood of our economy is successful, it will be an invitation to a litigation free-for-all targeting anyone who makes anything in America, seeking to cast blame while extracting a payday.
But the only people who will really pay will be the Americans who make things and the families who rely on the things manufacturers make to enhance their environment and lives.
You can read Linda Kelly’s full article on the Investor’s Business Daily website.