Tort Litigation & Preemption - J. Exley Journal, 10.05.08

Tort Litigation & Preemption - J. Exley Journal, 10.05.08

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Unformatted text preview: LW270: Law & Society I, M W 9:30AM, Snell 213 John Exley, ID: 0160294, 10.05.08 Preemption & Tort Litigation Journal I would like to start off by noting that my prior knowledge concerning the preemption doctrine is limited and I am always hesitant to communicate my opinions and stance on a controversial subject without having substantial understanding of the topic. However, after reading the articles and contemplating Prof. Wears' question of how I think the Supreme Court should decide and why, I have formulated a few thoughts I believe to be worth pondering. The Supreme Court needs to rule in favor of the defendants and wipe out the preemption doctrine that can restrict injured consumers (like the subject of the second article, Mrs. Levine) from suing in state court when the products that hurt them have previously met federal standards set by the Federal Drug Administration (F.D.A.). Taking into consideration the state of the F.D.A. as referenced as in the first article, I think it is downright dangerous to disallow injured consumers from being able to sue after being hurt by products that passed the F.D.A.'s standards. It appears as if the F.D.A. is stretched too thin to be adequately safe. In a way, by not allowing suits and resting all the responsibility of regulating drug companies and their products on the "undermanned and underfunded" (1st article) F.D.A., I believe an argument can be made that the government is failing to protect the safety and well-being of its citizens as guaranteed in the U.S. Constitution. The government has established an incompetent and overwhelmed monarchy in the drug company regulation area domestic issues. There is no other agency or area of government that oversees the F.D.A., and no injured consumers are allowed to file suits in state courts against products that have passed the federal standard. It almost introduces an element of potential corruption within and between the F.D.A. and drug companies. A high level executive at a drug company nearing financial breakthrough but awaiting the examination of its initial product could be tempted to involve a connection of hers or his inside the F.D.A. that speeds up the process and passes an otherwise unsafe drug allowing the drug company executive to take his product to the public without fear of lawsuit and with almost certain profitable success. The F.D.A. needs increased funding and more manpower, as well as a regulator. While I, by nature, am against greater and greater governmental regulation of business, given the recent events in the economy and this revelation of the lack of health safety with consumer products (even coming from such a well-known morally sound company such as Johnson & Johnson), I am inclined in this situation to lean towards establishing governmental oversight for the F.D.A. We cannot leave the safety and health of our people from the perspective of purchasing and using drugs that have passed federal standards up to an underfunded and undermanned agency. The Supreme Court needs to vote against Wyeth, in my humble opinion. ...
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