Quote of the Day - The heritage of yesterday provides the seed of tomorrow's harvest.
Today's feature is brought to you by Leigh Dierck, a faithful reader, who proposed I write about Big Tobacco. She was so concerned that she even sent me some links to use in this post, which I will.
Before we get there though, it must have been a red-letter day yesterday. My Mom called, and suggested today's Quote of the Day. She got it from her Ideals magazine.
That said, here we go. Apparently, the DOJ sued Big Tobacco for violations of RICO. Not everyone believes it's a good idea.
In any event, trial starts today (NPR's 4:38 minute audio link available).
Obviously, John Ashcroft wants to make a big splash. But, Big Tobacco has fought off and lost lesser lawsuits before.
The stakes are big here - nearly $280 million. Big Tobacco is fighting for its life. Kind of ironic, isn't it?
Will they lose this time? Maybe, maybe not. RICO is generally used against organized crime. Some would argue that label fits Big Tobacco.
The Government's Opening Statement is today, and Big Tobacco starts tomorrow. Appeals have already been taken, and you can expect this case and all of its appeals to last 20 years or more, if the lawyers have their way. Consequently, this lawsuit will wind its way through up to five Presidents.
You can bet Big Tobacco will get a sympathetic President that will instruct the Justice Department to settle the action, and no one will win, especially the taxpayers, who are footing the big expense of this case now. When settlement monies come, will they find their way into the hands of those who suffered lung cancer and the like?
Most likely not. It will repay the taxpayers and go into government coffers to fund programs to teach us not to smoke.
Meanwhile, where did I put my cigar?