November 23, 2009, - 4:04 pm

Sleazy Lawyers: Hurricane Katrina was Manmade; Let’s Sue Oil Companies

By Debbie Schlussel

Leave it to sleazy trial lawyers to find a way to tie “climate change”/”global warming” BS with massive lawsuits and Hurricane Katrina.  It was bad enough when the liberal media, Louis Farrakhan, and every loon under the sun blamed the natural disaster of Hurricane Katrina on President Bush.

Now the trial lawyers are blaming it on oil and energy companies.  Because, hey, the price of gas isn’t going up fast enough, and we need to add an extra litigation defense tax to the price.  Cha-ching:

sleazylawyercartoon

A group of 12 Mississippi Gulf Coast homeowners is using a novel legal strategy to try to recoup losses suffered during Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

The lawsuit seeks damages from a group of 33 energy companies, including ExxonMobil and coal giant Peabody Energy, electric utilities, and other conglomerates for allegedly emitting greenhouse gases that the litigants say contributed to global warming.

That, the litigants claim, caused a rise in sea levels and increased air and water temperatures fueling the Category 5 hurricane that destroyed their homes.

Absurd. It’s the oil companies’ fault these people didn’t buy the right insurance. So, let’s make consumers across America pay for our screw-up. That’s essentially what this is about.

The lawsuit, considered a long shot by legal experts, cleared a hurdle last month when a three-judge panel of the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals said it could continue, overruling a Circuit Court judge who had agreed with arguments from the companies that global warming is a political, not legal, issue.

Yes, it sounds like this “longshot” is hitting its target. And even if it does not, American consumers all over the country pay the price for the lawyers, etc. to defend this baloney. It’s always passed on to the customer.  This is one of those stark examples in which “loser pays” (in which the loser must pay legal fees of the winner) is sooo appropriate.

The key to the appeal was in the legal strategy, said Robert Percival, director of the Environmental Law Program at the University of Maryland. Rather than asking the court to force the companies to stop emitting greenhouse gases, the lawsuit asks for a ruling on whether damage suffered by the homeowners can be traced back to those emissions, he said.

“Just because climate change is difficult, courts aren’t going to shy away from their traditional role in weighing issues of harm,” Percival said.

Difficult? It’s a myth. This is quackery. Junk science. Baloney. Sadly, this baloney is being pimped in courts nationwide, such as in this other case:

In September, a federal judge in the Northern District Court of California dismissed a lawsuit brought by the tribal Alaskan village of Kivalina against 24 energy companies. Villagers are seeking $400 million in damages from the companies, claiming global warming had made their village uninhabitable.

The villagers have appealed the decision to the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. Percival said the decisions in the 5th and 2nd Circuits make it likely that the Kivalina ruling will be overturned. An opening brief by the plaintiffs is due Feb. 22, court records say.

If at first you don’t succeed, sue, sue again.  If you have a baseless hypothesis that can’t be proven scientifically, for $150 or so, you have a 50/50 shot of getting a judge (and/or jury) to declare it fact, anyway.

F. Gerald Maples, the New Orleans attorney representing the homeowners, says what the defendants did is legal, but homeowners want to be compensated for the damage allegedly caused by their actions, he said.

Like I said, cha-ching.  He probably took this risky case on an hourly basis.  Even if they lose, he still wins.  And if they companies settle to avoid costly litigation, they all win.  And we all lose.

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19 Responses

environmental law is the up and coming popular thing for young grads to study, they want to take corporations down. my cousin is in law school now for civil rights, she is thinking about changing to this. her and I have a split she is a obama fan and I am not.

Vox Day’s blog covered the AGW/CC story emails and links to where they are if people wanted to read them. I trolled thru about 30 of them. I was shocked. very delighted the scam is revealed-a truth for algore and his billions he stood to reap from the carbon business.

as for H-Kat. In 2005, the local news and surrouding state news kept it logical, this is a storm-reality.

but on places like coast to coast radio was saying this was weather war-NOT REALITY we created it, bush did h-kat, the russians did h-kat.

pathetic delusional conspiracy talk. usually…coast is weird talk, but that night in September as the leavies broke it was crazy talk.

lpolverini on November 23, 2009 at 4:58 pm

Ok, this really makes me angry. I graduated with a bachelor of science in meteorology in ’97. Even I knew that it was only a matter of time before NOLA got smacked just right with a moderate to severe hurricane. After I got a job in the industry, we had seminars that very graphically described the devastation that would happen if certain levees and/or dams ruptured.

Apparently, the Chocolate Mayor thought that he was just super duper special and the hurricanes would just magically turn away. Moron. They didn’t prepare at all.

cirrus1701 on November 23, 2009 at 5:07 pm

Not only is AGW a fiction created for political goals, but the thought that Hurricanes are caused by a warmer clime are totally without foundation. Hurricanes are caused by temperature differentials. You need cold. A general warming seems to diminish cyclonic storms.

pat on November 23, 2009 at 5:18 pm

at the time of hurricane katrina, and shortly thereafter, i clearly remember many references to the army corp of engineers who had been requesting funds to beef-up the levees for decades. wasn’t it congress that had denied more funding, despite dire warnings from the engineers of looming disaster? and didn’t the bush administration also press for this same funding only to have it denied?

and not a damn word of this mentioned now.

howardroark on November 23, 2009 at 6:32 pm

Then of course there’ll be a settlement, and part of it will be that the oil companies will do more (?*&?) to combat global warming — just like the civil ‘rights’ harassment lawsuits.

Little Al on November 23, 2009 at 6:35 pm

What are the names of the judges on the 5th and 2nd courts of appeal? Who appointed them?

Mikhail Alterman on November 23, 2009 at 7:23 pm

I thought the city was given the funds to do the work on the levees, but the money ended up being used elsewhere. Oops.

cirrus1701 on November 23, 2009 at 7:50 pm

There’s the law used to do good works, to end abuses and to preserve freedom. Then there’s the law used as extortion, to increase suffering and to diminish freedom. The law can be used for the benefit of mankind or for its oppression. Bad law does not make for good policy and neither do junk science and bad lawsuits improve the condition of our society.

NormanF on November 23, 2009 at 8:09 pm

I have the same memory, that Louisiana spent the money that was supposed to be for levee upgrades on something else.

Greg on November 23, 2009 at 11:36 pm

I’m sick and tired of hearing all this bantering and boo-hoo over katrina. These morons decided to live on the coast; nobody held a gun to their heads and forced them to. They didn’t insure themselves as well as they should, knowing all good and well that this type of catastrophy could occur. Once again, we have a collective of “shithouse experts” on gobal warming(?) and they are now the authorities because they lost their butts. Too bad, so sad.

Why don’t they sue “Chocolate Ray” Nagin and his cronies for pocketing the federal funds that were allocated for levee and dam repair? Naw, too logical.

icenomore on November 24, 2009 at 1:05 am

Frankly, anyone living in a Democratically run city in America takes their lives in their hands.

pat on November 24, 2009 at 2:37 am

Gee!

Don’tcha think by now someone would have sued OPEC for anti-trust violations? I mean, if you’re gonna sue a bunch of oil companies….

There is NO Santa Claus on November 24, 2009 at 8:29 am

First they blamed Bush for a ‘natural disaster’, now they want to blame the oil companies and try to get “damages” for residents on the gulf coast. 1) you live in/around an area that sits BELOW sea level, 2) oil companies are not responsible for mother nature’s work 3) All victims of Katrina were FOREWARNED of a hurricane coming and told to leave the area but, no one listened. 4) Pictures of all those empty school buses…nuff said 5) the judge of the 5th circuit who allowed this debauchery to pass…should be horse whipped! They figured they couldn’t get any money out of a former President so, hmmm…I know, let’s go after the oil companies!! They’re super rich!! If I were judge, I would have laughed and then thrown that trial lawyer out of my courtroom banishing him never to return.

James on November 24, 2009 at 10:32 am

    I lived in Mobile during Kat. One of the problems with this storm was it lollygagged around Fla for a week or so then wobbled into the Gulf as a weak Cat. One. Although the Gulf can be warm the end of August, we’d had several storms that cooled it off. Those storms were also part of the problem. They were all false alarms and with the network weather clones doing their doom and gloom scenarios, everyone was a bit tired of hearing it and being discommoded. Not a single business was boarded up on Mobile’s Main drag as of Sat. night. Oh wait, just one, a Starbucks. The evac. routes are dreadful from Mobile and worse in LA. It’s stupid in retrospect but everyone waits until the last minute. Sunday AM we woke up and a good breeze was stiffening. It became obvious we needed to take precautions but still no one expected the storm to strengthen the was it did. Also until the last minute, it was predicted to make a direct hit on Mobile not as far West as it did. We actually considered going to our daughter in NOLA because of the expected path of the storm.
    She lived in NOLA and she only got out the last minute because the officials did not give the order in time. She had a car and got over the Ponchartrain causeway about half an hour before it was too late. She left last minute because she was being told by Civil Defense that she was safe up til that point. If anyone deliberately did this to the population, it was the officials in NOLA.

    MK750 on November 24, 2009 at 1:06 pm

Just two weeks ago, the women in my wife’s office were talking about how Bush and the Republicans wanted to kill blacks in NO via katrina. My wife asked why they brought that up. The response: it was sermonized the past Sunday in their church.

hoss on November 24, 2009 at 11:16 am

BACKGROUND INFO ON HURRICANE KATRINA

Myths Debunked
http://www.popularmechanics.com/science/earth/2315076.html?page=2

Hurricanes not increasing
http://www.coaps.fsu.edu/~maue/tropical/

yonason on November 25, 2009 at 2:59 am

The Zune concentrates on being a Portable Media Player. Not a web browser. Not a game machine. Maybe in the future it’ll do even better in those areas, but for now it’s a fantastic way to organize and listen to your music and videos, and is without peer in that regard. The iPod’s strengths are its web browsing and apps. If those sound more compelling, perhaps it is your best choice.

detox foot spa on May 20, 2010 at 6:50 am

They figured they couldn’t get any money out of a former President

jaylock on September 17, 2012 at 4:02 am

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