An Ill-Conceived New Wave of Asbestos Liability

 

The United States Supreme Court will hear Air and Liquid Systems v. Devries in its next term, a case which raises the important question of whether a manufacturer that sold equipment to the United States Navy with no asbestos can be held liable for asbestos-related injuries resulting from other suppliers adding in their own products containing asbestos. The Third Circuit held that suits against any “bare metal” supplier—one who made their products in accordance with Navy specifications—might indeed be proper because it was “foreseeable” to that supplier at the time of its initial sale that products containing asbestos could be added on by independent parties. This theory, which works against any one supplier, can be brought simultaneously against multiple manufacturers who, years before, supplied bare metal components for naval ships.

This novel legal theory is a third-best alternative that takes the law far beyond its current contours. The obvious defendants are either the U.S. Navy or the supplier of those asbestos-contaminated products. But the Navy is immune from tort suit, and the suppliers of the asbestos products have all been bankrupted by a succession of earlier suits. Standard legal theories of causation hold that one person should not be held responsible for the wrongful acts of an independent party, and thus these cases ought to have been dismissed.

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Feeling the Pain of Bill Clinton … Not

 

View original at the link.

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Quote of the Day: Perennial Gardens

 

Designers of perennial gardens often tell gardeners to “buy the foliage, not the flower.” It’s certainly good advice for some perennial gardens. Most perennials are in beautiful bloom for only about two weeks out of their 52-week yearly life. As they are coming and going from this peak, we can add two weeks on either side of that peak where the plant is pretty to look at in a garden. But in general, we are looking at a sea of foliage for most of the growing season. That unbroken expanse of green is the reason most perennial gardens have some annuals tucked into them as a way to give them some color when the perennial blooms are fading.

I am not a gardener–just a weekend hobbyist who passes her daydreaming time designing gardens. I’ve set up a few perennial gardens, both for me and my neighborhood’s garden. In doing so, I’ve experimented with lots of different plant collections. I’ve tried to choose plants for a single garden that will all be in bloom at the same time to create a flower bouquet effect. And other times I’ve tried to choose plants to create small groups within the larger garden as a whole such that the small groups of flowers will bloom in sequence so that one part of the garden will light up with flowers for a couple of weeks, then quiet down, while another part of the garden lights up with color.

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Excellent and Creative Writing by Sharyl Attkisson: “The FBI’s Fractured Fairytale”

 

Sharyl Attkisson has written one of the most creative pieces I have seen in a very long time, published this morning under the title “The FBI’s Fractured Fairytale”; it graphically, and in the process hilariously, illustrates the utter contempt in which we deplorables are held by the reptilian denizens of the Deep State (Yes, Virginia, there is such a thing as the Deep State) in that they actually believe we are so irredeemably (love that word!) stupid that we will actually believe a word spoken by such bottom feeders as Brennan and Clapper.

Lucianne.com has deemed this the “read of the day”; I fully concur and cannot recommend it too highly.

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A Meet-Up on the Way from One Important Place to Another

 

While on the way from one place to another, @stad and @neutralobserver happened to be passing through beautiful downtown Troy, Michigan, so we got together for lunch. It’s a nice way to have a meet-up. It’s a chance to just talk and get to know people. I learned several things:

  1. Stad writes under a pseudonym. It is not a masculine name, which led to my questioning if he were writing romance novels.
  2. He’s about to start writing romance novels, but no, had not in the past. (I never got around to admitting that I have one of those started, too, because why not?)
  3. He’s much taller than he looks in his avatar.
  4. Neutral Observer makes the worlds best burritos. I have Stad’s assurance of this. He even started detailing the process at one point, but I doubt I’ll get them to put the recipe in the You Will Need Group.
  5. “Cell phone photos are today’s equivalent of relatives carrying around a carousel of slides from the old days.”
  6. Once you retire, you have no time to fool around anymore, because there is just too much to do with life.
  7. Neutral Observer has picked up a soft, Southern dialect from living in the South, but no, she’s from out west.

I’m sure the huge, mega-meet-ups are a lot of fun, but I’ll take the opportunity to talk with you one-on-one(ish), if you happen to be in town.

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Quote of the Day: Reformers, Right and Wrong

 

“The reformer is always right about what is wrong. He is generally wrong about what is right.” — G. K. Chesterton, Illustrated London News 10-28-1922 ¹

I’m unclear in what context Chesterton wrote this. This quote mugged my attention, and sticks to the roof of my brain like peanut butter. I don’t believe this is always true, but, I’ve found it to be sufficiently reasonable, as a rubric of sort. It forces my mind to rethink a criticism, usually one that rubs against my confirmation bias, to force me to see my critic’s point of view.

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$10,000 Is Not Nearly Enough to Compensate for Living in Vermont

 

(I’m posting this from the Josiah Bartlett Center for Public Policy’s weekly email newsletter, which you can get for free each Friday by signing up here: https://www.jbartlett.org/about-us/email-sign-up)

Moonlighting in Vermont

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More Golf Ball than Moonscape: The Red Zone in France

 

Serving in Bavaria during the last years of the Cold War, the battalion’s officers took a bus trip to Verdun, for a professional development weekend. The terrain, even in 1988, was a stark, silent testament to the horror that reigned between trenches in the Great War. Moonscape? Try golf ball, for the ubiquity and closeness of deep dimples in the ground. Thirty more years have not erased the scars.

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The Left Has a Lot of Hot Ideas. Too Bad It Doesn’t Have Much Hayekian Humility.

 

It’s frustrating when the facts have yet to catch up to your insight. Prudence and patience can be maddening when you’ve devised a ready-to-go clever solution — even if that solution might be for a problem that really isn’t a problem. Even worse: When that clever solution and that possible problem neatly sync with the way you think the world works and your long-term policy goals.

For instance: Some progressives have been arguing the rise of the “gig economy” means it’s time for a rash of new business mandates — health insurance, vacation days, sick days, paid leave, pensions for all workers whatever their status — to provide economic security. But as The New York Times sums up a new Bureau of Labor Statistics report on nontraditional work: “The old-fashioned job remains king.” Turns out a smaller share of workers today are employed in “alternative work arrangements” than back in 2005. (I would like to see how things have shaped up over the past five years or so.)

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A Father’s Imagination, for Better or Worse

 

Three of my kids are at summer camp. It’s for a short duration—five days—and as I write this I’m halfway through it. That is to say, I miss them. They weren’t gone for more than a few hours before I asked my wife if it would be pathetic for me to admit I missed them already. She just smiled and let me know it’s what good dads do.

I saw a picture of my oldest daughter yesterday on the camp Facebook post. She was singing, captivating, beautiful. I immediately began to imagine her leaving the nest, perhaps getting married. I have no illusions that when the time comes, I’ll be a wreck. That goes for the boys, too. My oldest is seventeen and though he’s ready and raring to get out and tackle the future, I can only imagine life without him here.

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The Art of Hanging Loose and Riding the Perfect Wave

 

Link to the original.

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Speaker for Those Who Live in Another Universe

 

I call myself a writer. But there are days when I wonder at the justice of my calling myself such. I wonder at the truth of it. Oh, certainly I have a facility with the written word, but when it comes to writing fiction, it is seldom that I am working hard at writing. Instead, it is as if the characters appear in my head. They shout, “Write this down. This is my life. Let your people know who I am. Let them know who I was. Let them know that I existed, if not in your world, then in another.”

You may call it imagination. I imagine these characters with all their foibles. Some are essentially good people. Some are drunks. Some are bored. Some grow through their stories. Some are out-and-out sociopaths, manipulating people and perpetrating horrors.

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Winning the Information Campaign in Singapore

 

The White House communications team was on offense in Singapore. They rolled out Secretary of State Pompeo, and then posted a short statement, suggesting something significant was happening, in the hours leading up to the two leaders’ meeting. As it turned out, something significant did happen.

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No More Excuses on Trade

 

Trump was in rare form Saturday at the G-7 press conference. It’s hard to argue with his thesis that free trade should be a two-way street. Trade concessions from our friends and adversaries alike must come, and I think they will come. I am a free trader. I believe a free exchange of goods leads to prosperity on the national and international level. I read Adam Smith and David Ricardo. Comparative advantage is a magical thing. But free trade has to be a two-way street. Let all countries reciprocate the free market access that we extend to them. I call for an equitable reduction in tariff and non-tariff barriers that benefits all countries.

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IG Report Due Today … But Was Leaked Yesterday

 

So here is a short and to the point recent clip of Alan Dershowitz on Fox News regarding the leaked details of the IG report that comes out Monday. What exactly will the Congress critters and the public learn about Comey, McCabe, and others, and the reasons for their spying on and investigating Trump?

Significantly, Dershowitz states: “It proves that we never needed a special counsel.”

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Three-Parent Babies: A Slippery Slope?

 

First, the term “three-parent babies” is a misnomer; it refers to a fertility technique that originally was proposed to deal with dysfunctional mitochondria which are inside most human cells. These mutations can lead to a number of incurable and often fatal diseases that are passed on to the baby. This describes the process:

Scientists remove the nucleus from an egg of the mother-to-be. They then insert it into a donor egg, extracted from a woman who has perfectly healthy mitochondria. (First, they have to strip that healthy egg of its nucleus.)

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