Join CFIF Corporate Counsel and Senior Vice President Renee Giachino today from 4:00 p.m. CDT to 6:00…
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This Week's "Your Turn" Radio Show Lineup

Join CFIF Corporate Counsel and Senior Vice President Renee Giachino today from 4:00 p.m. CDT to 6:00 p.m. CDT (that’s 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. EDT) on Northwest Florida’s 1330 AM WEBY, as she hosts her radio show, “Your Turn: Meeting Nonsense with Commonsense.” Today’s guest lineup includes:

4:00 CDT/5:00 pm EDT: James Bacchus, Former U.S. Representative, Professor of Global Affairs at the University of Central Florida, and Adjunct Scholar at Cato Institute: Free Trade and Destiny;

4:15 CDT/5:15 pm EDT: John Hannah, Senior Counselor at Foundation for Defense of Democracies: US-China Relations;

4:30 CDT/5:30 pm EDT: Quin Hillyer, Contributor to the Washington Examiner and Author: Happenings Inside the Beltway;

5:00 CDT/6:00 pm EDT: Andrew Och, First Ladies Man and Author: The Legacy…[more]

December 10, 2018 • 03:51 pm

Liberty Update

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Jester's CourtroomLegal tales stranger than stranger than fiction: Ridiculous and sometimes funny lawsuits plaguing our courts.
Jester’s Courtroom
Lawsuit Lights Up Court
Wednesday, December 05 2018

An Idaho couple has won a lawsuit against their Homeowner's Association that allegedly referred to their Christmas holiday light display as a "nuisance."

According to news reports, Jeremy and Kristy Morris lit up their yard for the holiday season with over 200,000 lights, masses of carolers and a real-life nativity scene, complete with a live camel. After receiving a letter from their Homeowner's Association trying to shut them down because their "beliefs were in conflict with neighbors," they sued, claiming they were "unlawfully discriminated against based on their religion."

In the suit, the Homeowner's Association denied the discrimination, saying the display was in violation of the association's governing rules that restrict "offensive noise," "increased traffic," and "excessively bright lights." However, audio played in court contradicted that statement, resulting in a jury award of $75,000 in damages.

The Morris family is not doing the house this year, but Jeremy is looking for another location because a big part of the event is a fundraiser for childhood cancer.

"This was about freedom of religion and property, and we hope this doesn't happen to anyone. Because there's going to be a federal lawsuit at the end of it," says Jeremy.

Source: abc7ny.com

An Alarming Lawsuit
Thursday, November 29 2018

A Hawaiian man is suing the state of Hawaii, claiming he suffered a heart attack as a result of the mistakenly issued ballistic missile alert last year.

James Sean Shields and his girlfriend, Brenda Reichel, have named the state of Hawaii and the then-administrator of the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency, Vern Miyagi, in the lawsuit that seeks unspecified damages after a Hawaii Emergency Management Agency employee mistakenly sent the missile alert; a follow-up message was sent 38 minutes later notifying people it was a false alarm.

The lawsuit alleges Shields’ heart attack was the result of the false missile alert and the state’s failure to cancel it in a timely manner. According to news reports, shortly after the notice Shields went to a community clinic, where he suffered cardiac arrest. Reichel claims she suffered “emotional upset” from watching Shields almost die.

“Both plaintiffs believed this message to be true and were extremely frightened and thought they were shortly going to die,” the lawsuit said.

“We’re going to reserve any comment until we have had a chance to review the claims,” said Richard Rapoza, a spokesman for the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency.

Source: westhawaiitoday.com

Butter Not Be
Wednesday, November 14 2018

A New York woman is suing the maker of vegan “butter,” claiming it is not enough like real butter to be called "cultured vegan butter."
 
Jasmine Brown filed a class-action lawsuit in Brooklyn federal court against Miyoko’s Kitchen, Inc. on grounds the vegan "butter" packaging is "misleading because … the products lack any milk or dairy ingredients" and don’t have any nutritional "attributes associated with real butter." 

Brown is seeking at least $5 million in damages for alleged negligent misrepresentation, breach of warranty, fraud and unjust enrichment. Brown further alleges in the lawsuit that consumers pay a "premium price" of at least $6.99 for a product that does not even resemble butter. According to the lawsuit, the vegan butter "basks in dairy's 'halo' by using familiar terms to invoke positive traits."
 
Celebrity chef Miyoko Schinner, who owns Miyoko’s Kitchen, responded that, "Several surveys indicate that consumers are not confused when they buy plant dairy, and buy these products specifically because they do not contain animal ingredients."
 
"While our award-winning butter may not have tasted like butter to Jasmine Brown, many people who taste it either comment, ‘Wow! It's butter!’ or ‘Wow! It’s better than butter!'" Schinner added.
 
Source: nypost.com

Judge Fires Blistering Opinion in Shotgun Complaint Case
Wednesday, November 07 2018

A federal appellate court judge has scolded an attorney for filing a shotgun complaint, a term used to define a complaint that contains multiple counts, each incorporating by reference the preceding allegation with no clear cause of action asserted.

During oral argument on a foreclosure matter before a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, attorney Kenneth Lay of Birmingham, Alabama, acknowledged his "shotgun" complaints may be "an issue in federal court," but they "are not disfavored in Alabama courts." 

"I understand [the court’s] problem with shotgun pleadings, and I’m not gonna argue about that," Lay reportedly said. In the opinion that followed, the court chided Lay for filing a clearly deficient complaint as part of a scheme "engineered to delay or prevent execution of a foreclosure judgment on a residence and the consequent eviction of its occupants."
 
Lay "effectuated this scheme by filing a multi-count, incomprehensible complaint that flouted the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and this circuit’s well-established precedent," Judge Gerald Tjoflat wrote.

In addition to upholding the trial judge’s dismissal of the case, Tjoflat said the frivolous filings constituted an abuse of judicial process and ordered Lay to show cause within twenty-one days why he should not be ordered to pay the defendants’ double their costs for defending the appeal.  

"All told, Mr. Lay sought and obtained 10 extension requests from this court," the opinion said.

In upholding the lower court’s dismissal, Tjoflat wrote that the amended complaint "patently violates Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 8, which requires a plaintiff to plead ‘a short and plain statement of the claim showing that the pleader is entitled to relief.' At 28 pages and having incorporated all 123 paragraphs of allegations into all 16 counts, it is neither ‘short’ nor ‘plain.'"

"Put colloquially: garbage in, garbage out," Tjoflat wrote.

"Tolerating such behavior constitutes toleration of obstruction of justice," he said.

Source: law.com

What’s That Smell?
Thursday, November 01 2018

A Colorado couple is suing its neighbor claiming his cannabis business is injuring their property values.

Ranchers Hope and Michael Reilly, with the help from Safe Streets Alliance, filed the federal lawsuit against their neighbor Parker Walton and his Cannacraft grow house. The Reillys claim they built their house on their rural southern Colorado land for views of Pikes Peak and to hike and ride horses. Now, they allege “pungent, foul odors” from the neighboring indoor marijuana grow have hurt their property’s values and their ability to use and enjoy it.

The lawsuit further seeks to shut down the business under federal anti-racketeering law; although marijuana is legal in Colorado and the grower is licensed by the state, the marijuana business still violates federal law. A federal trial is underway in Denver.

According to news reports, an attorney for the business targeted by the suit plans to argue the couple’s property has not been damaged, relying in part on the county’s tax valuations of the Reillys’ land ticking up over time.

Source: denverpost.com



Question of the Week   
The son of which one of the following U.S. politicians currently serves as a Marine aviator aboard the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush?
More Questions
Quote of the Day   
 
"The failures of Comey's remarkably turbulent and short tenure as FBI director were on display again Friday on Capitol Hill, when he was interviewed in a closed-door session by two House committees. Republican lawmakers were aghast at his sudden lack of recollection of key events.He didn't seem to know that his own FBI was using No. 4 Justice Department official Bruce Ohr as a conduit to keep collecting…[more]
 
 
—John Solomon, Award-Winning Investigative Journalist and The Hill Executive Vice President for Video
— John Solomon, Award-Winning Investigative Journalist and The Hill Executive Vice President for Video
 
Liberty Poll   

For family Christmas giving this year, are you spending more than usual, about the same as usual, or less than usual?