Monday, October 29, 2007

"A Foolish Consistency is the Hobgoblin of Little Minds"

"Banks looking to collect damages from retailers for cases involving credit-card data breaches received a big boost from a federal judge here [in Boston]. ... Until now, banks that issue credit cards have been liable for fraud losses, while retailers haven't. ... In previous cases, judges have dismissed damages cases brought by banks, ruling that the contractual agreements to ensure the safety of the customer data were just between retailers and the credit-card associations, not the banks that issue credit and debit cards to consumers. ... Judge Young ruled that even though the companies didn't have 'direct contact with the issuing banks, TJX and Fifth Third knew that the issuing banks were part of a financial network that relies on members taking appropriate security measures'," WSJ, 26 October.

This post's title is from Ralph Waldo Emerson's, Self-Reliance, 1841, the rest of the sentence read, "adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines". The banks must have gigantic minds! Bravo Judge Young (JY). You understand tort law and the concept of reasonable foreseeability. Will the Supremes follow JY in Stoneridge? Even better, let's see if the Supreme's "distinguish" the banks' arguments here from those made in Stoneridge to avoid liability for their structured finance departments actions affecting third-party investors. This I want to see. I'm sure John Roberts (JR), A.B., J.D., Harvard can do it easily. He's so smart. I bet he looks down intellectually on: Albert Einstein, Isaac Newton, Richard Feynman, et. al.. I suspect if JR ever heard of me, a sans coulotte, sans Ivy League degree ignoramus, he would spit. I opposed JR's joining the Supremes, believing he was and is, an unscrupulous child of privilege. I await JR's decision the Exxon Valdez case, now that the Supremes agreed to take it.

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