In an interview with CFIF, Dr. Scott Gottlieb, Resident Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute,…
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High Risk: The Debate Over the Price of Specialty Drugs and Zika Virus

In an interview with CFIF, Dr. Scott Gottlieb, Resident Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, discusses the history and regulations surrounding drug prices, who should finance important medical advancements, and the continuing Zika threat.

Listen to the interview here.…[more]

September 27, 2016 • 01:11 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
Judge's Ruling Sprinkled with Wit
Wednesday, September 21 2016

Judge Jennifer Walker Elrod of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals issued a witty opinion in a legal frozen food fight over the classic New Orleans "sno-ball" of manufactured ice.

The lawsuit, filled with claims, counterclaims and overlapping jurisdiction, has been winding through the courts for years, with a trio of rivals battling over a range of issues, including allegations of trademark violations, patent infringement and sno-ball names, such as Snosweet, Mountain Maple and Orchid Cream Vanilla. The parties involved are SnoWizard Inc., Southern Snow Manufacturing and Snow Ingredients Inc.

"What began as a flurry of cease-and-desist letters between the companies has turned into a blizzard of patent, trademark, and antitrust litigation," Judge Jennifer Walker Elrod wrote for a three-judge panel. "Each party has attempted to freeze the other out of the sno-ball market."

Where the case goes next is unclear. SnoWizard attorney Jack Morris told sources that the company is happy with the decision and has no plans to appeal; Mark Andrews, an attorney for the Southern Snow clients, said they are evaluating the case.

Elroy makes clear in her opinion that it's time for the lawsuit to melt away. "The parties could have shaved down the overwhelming costs in time, expense, and scarce judicial resources that this litigation has consumed," Elrod wrote, "if they could have abandoned their unrelenting desire to crush the opposition."


Target Stuck with Lawsuit
Thursday, September 15 2016

A South Carolina woman has been awarded $4.6 million after being stuck by a syringe needle in a Target parking lot.

Denise Garrison, of Anderson, South Carolina, was exiting her vehicle at a Target store when she noticed her eight-year-old daughter had picked up a syringe in the parking lot. Garrison swatted the syringe out of her daughter's hand, causing it to stick in the palm of her right hand.

"The plaintiff instinctively reacted to protect her child and swatted the syringe out of her child's hand," the lawsuit said. "You shouldn't leave items in your parking lot if you know children are coming with their mothers."

According to Garrison's attorney, Garrison underwent testing for HIV and hepatitis, the results of which came back negative, but the treatment made her ill and caused her husband to miss work.

The plaintiff originally sought $12,000 in damages, and Target offered $500 during mediation and $2,500 right before trial. The jury awarded Garrison $4.6 million.

Target spokeswoman Erika Winkels said the retailer may appeal the verdict. "We disagree with the outcome of this case," Winkels said.

Source: (Greenville, SC)


Roommate Squabble Lawsuit Ends with a Hug
Wednesday, September 07 2016

A federal lawsuit involving roommate grievances has been settled between two Penn State sorority sisters.

Alpha Sigma Alpha sorority sister Molly Brownstein claimed she was the target of extended bullying by her roommate, Rachel Lader. Both girls threw accusations at each other, eventually resulting in Lader, an aspiring attorney, filing a defamation and breach-of-contract lawsuit against Brownstein's parents. According to news reports, Lader claimed in her lawsuit that Brownstein's parents used their position as university donors to influence a disciplinary investigation against Lader, which ultimately resulted in Lader being put on academic probation.

The sorority sisters' spat heated up while the girls lived together on a study abroad semester, allegedly coming to a head when Lader brought a man back to the women's hotel room in Prague, played music too loudly in their shared Barcelona apartment and dumped a colander of pasta on Brownstein's bed.

“Rachel bullied me to the point where I had to leave in the middle of the night in an area where people get stabbed outside my building,” Ms. Brownstein wrote in the memo. “Whenever I think about it, it brings me to a full-on terrible place and makes me completely depressed.”

Ms. Lader denied the allegations. “The alleged conduct complained of by Molly Brownstein is without any merit and is nothing more than slander and harassment by (her) and her mother to have me thrown out of school,” Ms. Lader wrote in response.

Lader dropped the lawsuit several days after filing it. Brownstein's father said, "the girls hugged and made up."

Source: (Pittsburgh)

Judge Pours Hot Water on Another Starbucks Lawsuit
Thursday, September 01 2016

Another lawsuit against Starbucks alleging the company defrauds its customers by adding too much ice and thus under-filling drinks has gone down the drain.

U.S. District Court Judge Percy Anderson quickly dismissed the case brought by Alexander Forouzesh who claimed the coffee giant defrauded customers "by advertising its cold drinks as containing more liquid than they do by ‘underfilling’ its cups with liquid and then adding ice to make the cups appear full.” Forouzesh alleged the underfilling practice constituted breach of warranty and unjust enrichment.

In determining whether a "reasonable person" would be misled by the companies labeling practices, Judge Anderson wrote that no child could possibly be misled by Starbucks’s advertising practices, much less its adult consumers.

“If children have figured out that including ice in a cold beverage decreases the amount of liquid they will receive, the Court has no difficulty concluding that a reasonable consumer would not be deceived into thinking that when they order an iced tea, that the drink they receive will include both ice and tea and that for a given size cup, some portion of the drink will be ice rather than whatever liquid beverage the consumer ordered,” Anderson wrote.

“It’s disappointing to see that the judge didn’t recognize the viability of the claims and the merits of the case,” Justin Farahi, who represented Forouzesh, told news sources.


Pokemon Go(es) to Court
Wednesday, August 24 2016

A New Jersey man is suing the makers of Pokemon Go after players trespassed on his property.

Jeffrey Marder filed the proposed class action lawsuit claiming the game's developer, Niantic, "caused Pokemon Go players to interfere with [his] use and enjoyment of his property." According to court documents, Marder's property, and that of thousands of others, contain PokeStops and Pokemon Gyms, which encourage the users to visit these virtual meeting points and "make unwanted incursions onto the properties."

The lawsuit, which also names Nintendo and the Pokemon Game, states that "during the week of Pokemon Go's release, strangers began lingering outside of his home with their phones in hand," and "at least five individuals knocked on [his] door and asked for access to [his] backyard in order to 'catch' Pokemon that the game had placed at [his] residence ... without [his] permission."

According to news reports, Marder is the only person named as a plaintiff, with the lawsuit stating that the number of people who may potentially be interested in suing "is uncertain and can only be ascertained through appropriate discovery." Harder is seeking class action status, compensation and a change to the game's practices.


Question of the Week   
At what age are men in the U.S. required to register with the Selective Service?
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Quote of the Day   
"A recent Gallup survey found a new low in public trust of the media, with only 32 percent of Americans saying they have a great deal or some trust in newspapers, TV and radio 'to report the news fully, accurately and fairly.' Trust fell eight points in one year alone and is only 14 percent among Republicans.In a change election where both candidates have historically high negative ratings, many voters…[more]
—Michael Goodwin, New York Post
— Michael Goodwin, New York Post
Liberty Poll   

Who won the first 2016 televised presidential debate?