News recap for 10-23-20
Washington Examiner: What the 2020 election means for personal injury lawyers — In this commentary, former law school dean Victor Schwartz explains what personal injury lawyers could push for in the next congress. “The trial bar’s goal these many years has been to find ways to enhance or at least to preserve its avenues of litigation throughout the United States. Next year may just be a watershed year for a return on those investments… If the trial lawyers get their way, the law will change to enable trial lawyers to take a tax deduction the moment they make a payment, even if that occurs long before litigation begins. So, who “floats” the litigation during that time? The taxpayers, of course.”
WasteDive: Burning ‘forever chemicals’ emerges as industry flash point — Earlier this year, federal and state officials prepared a study meant to explore how PFAS chemicals react to traditional incineration. The experiment quickly fell apart after community members opposed the planned test over fears it could prove harmful and further compound environmental justice issues. While the decision was hailed as a victory by locals as well as environmental groups, government officials said the move marked a blow against science, as some experts think no other destruction mechanism is as effective as incineration.
Yahoo Finance: Monsanto loses final appeal over French farmer’s weedkiller accident — Monsanto has been trying to overturn a decision by an appeals court in 2019 that had found the company’s product safety information to have been inadequate in relation to the accident involving farmer Paul Francois in 2004. In a statement, parent company Bayer said that court-appointed medical experts had found previously that the incident did not cause the illnesses cited in the lawsuit.
Scientific American: The Idea That a Scientific Theory Can Be ‘Falsified’ Is a Myth — Science studies provide supporters of science with better arguments to combat their critics, by showing that the strength of scientific conclusions arises because credible experts use comprehensive bodies of evidence to arrive at consensus judgments about whether a theory should be retained or rejected in favor of a new one. These consensus judgments are what have enabled the astounding levels of success that have revolutionized our lives for the better. It is the preponderance of evidence that is relevant in making such judgments, not one or even a few results.
InsideSources: For Trial Lawyers, COVID-19 Is Just Another Feather In Their Caps — here’s no question the coronavirus pandemic has taken a heavy toll on our nation. It has caused the deaths of nearly 200,000 Americans, brought about unprecedented economic turmoil and continues to harm the lives of everyday people. But not everyone is lamenting the devastation wrought by the coronavirus. Indeed, for certain trial lawyers, COVID-19 isn’t a tragedy — it’s an opportunity. From January to May alone, law firms have spent upward of $67 million on mass tort television advertisements, in the hopes that their call to action will spur on a wave of COVID-19-related lawsuits.