Today, the House Oversight Committee is holding an important hearing entitled "The Role of Pharmacy…
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House Hearing Spotlights Pharmacy Benefit Managers (PBMs) as Drivers of Higher Drug Prices

Today, the House Oversight Committee is holding an important hearing entitled "The Role of Pharmacy Benefit Managers in Prescription Drug Markets Part III:  Transparency and Accountability."

For those unfamiliar, Pharmacy Benefit Managers (PBMs) amount to middlemen that control prescription drugs for millions of Americans.  A majority of Americans receive health insurance through employer plans or government programs such as Medicare, which in turn cover prescription drugs through PBMs.  Those PBMs negotiate with drug companies and pay pharmacies, but throughout the process determine the drugs that insured patients may obtain and at what cost.

The problem is that PBMs operate in such an opaque and complex manner that they're able to inflate drug costs while claiming to be working…[more]

July 23, 2024 • 04:57 PM

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Jester’s Courtroom
No Constitutional Right to Infect Others
Thursday, July 30 2020

A judge in Palm Beach County, Florida, has upheld the county’s mandate requiring people to wear masks to fight the spread of COVID-19.

Four Palm Beach County residents sued the county, alleging the face mask requirement in public places infringes on their constitutional right to free speech and privacy. Circuit Court Judge John Kastrenakes ruled otherwise.

"We do not have a constitutional right to infect others," Judge Kastrenakes said in his order. "The right to be 'free from governmental intrusion' does not automatically or completely shield an individual’s conduct from regulation...This is particularly true when one’s individual choices can result in drastic, costly, and sometimes deadly, consequences to others."

According to news reports, Pompano Beach attorney Louis Leo IV, who is representing the plaintiffs, responded to the decision in a public post on Facebook, saying the order paved "the way for continued government tyranny under the guise of disease prevention."

An appeal of the decision to the District Court of Appeals is expected.


After the Bucks from a Starbuck's Barista
Wednesday, July 22 2020

A California woman is threatening to sue a Starbuck’s barista for half of the $100,000 in donations the barista received after the customer took to social media complaining the barista refused to serve her because she wasn’t wearing a mask.

Amber Gilles says she posted a photo of barista Lenin Gutierrez with the caption: "Meet Lenen from Starbucks who refused to serve me cause I’m not wearing a mask. Next time I will wait for cops and bring a medical exemption." Gilles' post exploded online, with a GoFundMe to raise tip money for Gutierrez collecting more than $100,000.

Gilles claims she has medical problems preventing her from wearing a mask and that Gutierrez’s action constituted discrimination.

"I get shortness of breath, dizziness and it messes with the heartbeat," said Gilles. "And I do have asthma as well, and I do get 'maskne'. So there’s several things going on and not only that but it doesn’t even work."

According to news reports, Gilles shared two pieces of paperwork to support her claim of a medical exemption — one of which was a 2015 doctor’s report on an ovarian cyst.

Gilles wants half of the GoFundMe money donated, and is threatening to sue. Noting that lawyers are expensive, Gilles has started her own GoFundMe to raise legal fees.

Starbucks now requires customers to wear facial coverings or masks in all 9,000 of its company-owned American stores. Customers who refuse to wear a mask inside can order using delivery, the drive-thru or curbside pickup, the company said. 


The Party Must Go On
Wednesday, July 15 2020

With bars closed in Florida due to coronavirus, it seems house parties have become the new party scene for some.

The City of Miami is suing a homeowner of two properties who neighbors say is hosting large, loud parties, some with as many as 400 attendees. In the once peaceful neighborhood of Belle Meade Island, neighbors have been accumulating photos of the parties taking place at the rental homes, likening them to the new South Beach.

“I call it a horror show, a combination of many nuisances, people driving their cars and speeding, just the amount of cars,” said resident Rita Legace. “There’s just a combo of everything. You do not know when it’s going to happen. You may have company and it’s embarrassing for people to come to your house and see the shenanigans next door. The music is so loud, it’s not normal.”

From girls dancing on rooftops to massages to rappers filming videos, Legace feels she has seen it all. She said a lot of the parties are advertised through social media fliers, where people can purchase tickets to attend.

Despite calls to code enforcement officials and police and cease and desist letters sent this spring, the parties rage on. The City of Miami is now filing a lawsuit against the homeowner, listed as John Petrozza.

“It’s like banging your head against the wall. You just don’t get anywhere,” said Legace who has retained an attorney of her own.

“I am proud to represent Ms. Lagace in regaining the peace and quiet she rightfully expects to enjoy in her home,” said Legace’s attorney, Mary Ann Ruiz. “We thank the City of Miami, City Attorney, Victoria Mendez, and Assistant City Attorney, Rachel S. Dooley, for filing a civil lawsuit to return Belle Meade Island to the peaceful and quiet residential neighborhood it has always been.”


Trying to Become the Richest Man in the World
Thursday, July 02 2020

A Missouri man recently sued Apple for $1 trillion, which, if successful, would make him the richest man on earth, overtaking Jeff Bezos and Bill Gates.

Raevon Terrell Parker is suing Apple, claiming the tech giant kept his iPhone 7 after a repair and used “special features” on his phone to develop features in iOS, Apple's mobile operating system. According to news sources, Parker claimed his phone had a special beta version on iOS that gave him special functionality. In his handwritten lawsuit, Parker stated, “The attendant in the Apple Store fixed the device but kept it by deceiving the Plaintiff knowing that it was the first phone to have new features.”

In seeking $1 trillion in damages, Parker justifies the amount by stating he cannot be “compensated for being labeled ‘crazy’”, but that his claim would cover "hospitalizations, travel, distress, humiliation, embarrassment, defamation of character.”

A similar lawsuit filed by Parker in 2019 was unsuccessful.


Does Your Dog Bite?
Wednesday, June 24 2020

The Vermont Supreme Court has remanded a case back to the lower court for a jury to determine if the defendants knew or should have known that their dog was a probable source of danger.

The plaintiffs, Amber Bradley, Billy Noyes, and their son Tyler Noyes, are suing Amber’s parents (Tyler’s grandparents) after their recently acquired dog, Bobo, attacked Tyler. In the lawsuit, the plaintiffs claim John and Sharon Bradley negligently allowed the dog to attack the boy.

According to the lawsuit, the dog had been around the owners’ other grandchildren on numerous occasions without incident, but this was the first time Tyler had met the dog. With Bobo chained to a garage, Tyler approached him from behind to stand near his grandfather, John. When Tyler went to touch Bobo, the dog grabbed him, threw him in the air and then onto the ground, attacking him.

The lower court, following Vermont case law precedent, concluded defendants did not have reason to know Bobo was a probable source of danger despite the previous owner noting the dog had once growled at his son and that he “had always had off feelings about the dog." On appeal, the Vermont Supreme Court agreed with plaintiffs, ruling that “a genuine dispute of facts exists as to whether defendants ‘had some reason to know the animal was a probable source of danger,'” sending the case back to the lower court for a jury to determine if defendants had reason to know the dog was probably dangerous.


Notable Quote   
"The astonishing political events of the last four weeks make plain, once again, how much of America's history depends on what voters have come to accept as the choice of one person: each presidential nominee's choice of a vice presidential candidate. Even as the nomination process was expanded, half a century ago, to include millions of primary voters, the choice of the vice presidential nominee…[more]
— Michael Barone, Senior Political Analyst for the Washington Examiner and Longtime Co-Author of The Almanac of American Politics
Liberty Poll   

Should Secret Service Director Kimberly Cheatle be fired for the agency's unconscionable failures regarding the assassination attempt on President Trump?