Money - what a complicated concept. Money brings out the best and worst in us. Money means many things to us. Money is synonymous with freedom, security and power. Just as with anything pleasurable, food, drugs, or sex, money can be overly desired and become addictive.
I recently read that a survey was done of people with net worths of over$20,000,000. They were asked if they either wanted to maintain their wealth or increase it. 80% of those in this wealthy category wanted to increase their wealth. Not being in this category, I wonder when is enough enough?
Let's look at recent news. We all are affected by the debacle on Wall Street. I recently watched the movie "Margin Call." the demise of the investment bankers, and our economy, was caused by greed, pure and simple. What about the scandal at Penn State? Why was an assistant coach allowed to sexually abuse young boys for years? Who wanted to rock the boat and bring down a very financially successful football program? The root of the cover up was greed, nothing less.
So how does this relate to the legal system? As civil plaintiffs' lawyers we seek money for our clients, and, truth be told, for ourselves. When is enough enough? I suppose it depends on perspective. We all know plaintiffs' lawyers whom we think may be motivated by greed. In my situation, I wonder if my indictment of these rich lawyers might be mixed with some jealousy. However, the insurance industry and society is quick to point out the social ills allegedly caused by a greedy plaintiffs' bar.
Let's examine some real life situations that insurance companies and businesses fail to mention. There are products sold in this country by major retailers that are devastatingly dangerous to American citizens. The consumer product safety commission is mired in bureaucracy. Companies, when successfully sued, can file bogus bankruptcies under our system, even where they are not insolvent to avoid trial or paying judgments. Individuals who own multiple million or billion dollar companies move to Hong Kong or other places to avoid service of process, dissolving their companies and reopening them under bogus names. You may think that these situations cannot be happening in modern times in this country. I have two current cases where this is happening now. The bottom line for these owners of companies is to protect their enormous wealth at the expense of gravely injured or damaged victims. And America's biggest corporations help these greedy people evade responsibility.
In the end, I believe that my clients will prevail. I, and the other lawyers representing the injured, will continue to fight for our clients. But the love of money, the root of all evil, is a formidable opponent. With excess money, comes excess power. It is hard to fight against the power of too much money, but not impossible.
Excessive money is seductive and is likely to corrupt. It is not the plaintiffs' lawyers who are hurting others to maintain possession of billions. Corporations are not people, no matter what the Supreme Curt may say, they can be the means by which greedy people circumvent decency to line the pockets of its greedy masters at the expense of the health and wealth of living, breathing humans. It is that which we must combat.