Everybody sit down. Are you sitting comfortably? Need anything? Cup of tea, perhaps. Good. Okay. I have some…unpleasant news for you. Yes, our close, personal friends down Meh-hi-coh way have decided to retain U.S.-based counsel, in order to file suit against U.S.-based gun manufacturers who are obviously to blame for the river of guns flowing into Our Good Neighbor’s Country to the South.

Um…whaaa?!

Yep. Courtesy of CBS News (and a tip o’ the TTAG range cap to TTAG Armed Intelligencia member Brian G.), we learn that the Calderon Cartel…um Federales have retained a U.S.-based law firm (NY-based Reid Collins & Tsai, if you must know) to sue the gunmakers for all they’re worth and then some.

Pause with me for a nanosecond, whilst we consider everything that’s wrong with this whole enchilada.

First of all, as we have thoroughly documented here on TTAG:

  • there is no river of guns. It simply doesn’t exist. It’s a figment of the ATF’s over-active imagination. Oh, and a line item on their budget/to-do list.
  • another teensy problem, while there are no “90,000 weapons” making their way into Mexico from the U.S., there is the not-so-little matter of the 3,000 or so guns that the ATF has allowed/encouraged/sent into Mexico. Oh. Yeah. Those guns.
  • to add insult to injury, there’s evidence to suggest that Felipe Calderon himself is in cahoots with one of the drug cartels, making his pronouncements on the subject just a wee bit, shall we say, “suspect.” Pot, meet kettle. Kettle, meet pot.
  • CBS covered this story, but seems to think it’s unrelated to their Gunwalker ‘expose.’ (Is it still an expose when other news outlets have broken the story, and your only claim to fame is that you are the first of the “mainstream media” to scrape the news blogs and report the story as if you broke it yourself?)
  • While I’m not an attorney, I seem to recall there’s some law about foreign countries not having legal standing in our country. There’s also a Federal law that protects gun manufacturers from these kinds of lawsuits. Just sayin.

Now the boys at Dewey Cheatam & Howe $eem to think that thiS ¢a$e i$ a winner. Sadly, they may be right. As I’ve come to learn firsthand, the Law is not about right and wrong. It’s not about fairness. And it’s not about protecting the downtrodden and taking the rich and powerful to task. Nope. It’s all about winning. Strategy. Tactics. And who’s got the best attorneys. Unfortunately, one of those tactics comes under the rubric of “nuisance lawsuits” – suits that are filed to bleed your opponent dry, by forcing them to defend themselves over cases that may be frivolous in the long-run, but deadly to a company’s bottom line in the short-run.

Calderon, Obama & Co. either haven’t gotten the memo that the Gunwalker jig is up, or they seem to be making one last, desperate, Hail Maria/scorched Earth policy play here. If we can’t win on the facts, argue emotion. If we can’t win on emotion, bury them under so many motions and filings that they’ll buy us off to get out from under.

Regardless of if they win or lose, if these cases are allowed to wend their way through the legal system, you can bet your bottom dollar that the gun industry will suffer greatly because of it.

During LBJ’s first congressional race, the story goes that told his campaign manager to begin circulating the rumor that his main opponent, a pig farmer, was into bestiality. “Jesus, Lyndon,” the campaign manager was said to have responded. “Nobody’s going to believe that.” “Yeah,” he replied, “but I want to hear the sonofabitch deny it.” It’s not enough for the gun manufacturers to get a jury to rule them “Not Guilty” against this kind of thuggish use of the law. They have to prove that they are, in fact, “Innocent” in order to win. And that’s an standard that would be impossibly high for anyone short of The Almighty, Himself.

Recommended For You

9 Responses to Mexico to Sue U.S. Gunmakers

  1. RC&T will be laughing all the way to the bank. It will be interesting to see how our congresscritters and the RKBA groups counter this. Obama’s comment at the “gun summit” that executive “under the radar” activities are in the works; well, it now appears that those activities are approaching the horizon and the fuzes are being armed. I don’t think this is going to turn out well for our side in the short run. However, if the administration thinks that this move is going to be their brilliant “check mate” moment, I believe that they’ll be proven to be very badly mistaken. What knuckleheads.

  2. Statists one both sides of the border correctly understand that an armed populace is the single greatest obstacle to their ambitions. Hence, their “win at any cost and by any means” strategy.

    If they wish to double down on their gunrunning failure, we ought to respond by demanding comprehensive tort law reform. If litigants were to bear the costs of unsuccessful lawsuits, it would lead to the increased use of mediation and dramatically reduce the demand for trial lwayers.

    Hustling 100,000 lawyers into an early retirement would permit money now being spent by various industries defending themselves against frivolous lawsuits to be better used increasing the quality and quantity of good and services made available to American consumers.

    As an added benefit, the Trial Lawyers Association would have fewer dues-paying members. This would help to cripple their lobbying efforts and translate into reduced financial support for leftist politicians.

  3. This is exactly why Founding Fathers used common sense and not just straight law. It makes no sense to even allow this. These darn governmental types insist on taking everything from us and for some reason America just allows it.

  4. Yawn – this case is a loser right out of the gate. Why? Because of a legal doctrine called independent intervening cause. Gun manufacturers are not running guns to Mexico, third parties are. Gun manufacturers are not encouraging the process and have no way of preventing people from doing it. Mexico, on the other hand, could always stick a police officer or two on their border to prevent illegal immigrants from coming to the United States (many of whom buy guns here and run them back to Mexico).

    Beyond independent intervening cause – (1) gun makers have no duty in this instance. How are they going to enforce national trade laws or create federal trade policy? Thank NAFTA if nothing else for an easier border; (2) we’ve seen these cases in the past when some gun companies got sued by victims’ families. What happened? Unless they were clearly making guns designed for gang use (e.g. the Mac 10), the suits were tossed right after they were filed. This is a silly case.

  5. Ah, if only judges would award fees against lawyers and firms that bring frivolous lawsuits….

  6. “the Law is not about right and wrong. It’s not about fairness. And it’s not about protecting the downtrodden and taking the rich and powerful to task.”

    Color me disillusioned!

  7. Brad Kozak says: ‘During LBJ’s first congressional race, the story goes that told his campaign manager to begin circulating the rumor that his main opponent, a pig farmer, was into bestiality. “Jesus, Lyndon,” the campaign manager was said to have responded. “Nobody’s going to believe that.” “Yeah,” he replied, “but I want to hear the sonofabitch deny it.”’

    Fun story, but totally fabricated — and never meant to be taken as factual in the first place. The first problem with it: LBJ never ran against a pig farmer for office, in his first congressional race (1937) or in any other election.

    The “anecdote” originated in a story by Hunter S. Thompson, and if you are familiar with the gonzo journalist’s work (imaginary meetings with Nixon in restrooms, Muskie’s “ibogaine addiction,” etc.) you know the depiction was intended to be transparently fictional, if not hallucinatory. In Thompson’s yarn, LBJ’s first congressional race was in 1948. But in reality, LBJ won his first house seat (Texas 10th district) in ’37, and in ’48 he ran for the U.S. Senate against Coke Stevenson, a banker and judge. Historically, this was a notable election that earned LBJ the nickname, “Landslide Lyndon,” but there were no pig farmers involved. The first clue that the story was one of the good doctor’s classic put-ons: He introduces the tale as “an ancient and honorable story…”

    More recently the story has popped up in various Internet blogs, but incredibly, repeated as though it were possibly a real event — I suppose by writers too young or innocent to know where the story originated, or not terribly interested in doing their homework. I’ve no doubt Thompson would find all this very entertaining — Dr. Gonzo laughing from the grave.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *