Last week an explosion in a Wisconsin paper factory killed three workers and injured another. Over the last ten years, OSHA has cited the Packaging Corporation of America's mill in Tomahawk three times as well as for violations in other locations. But it obviously wasn't enough.
But as we wrote a couple years ago in the wake of tragic mining accidents in West Virginia.
With regulatory oversight of mining and other industries so weakened, the right to bring reckless corporations to court is more precious than ever...
The civil justice system is the only reliable means of deterring dangerous corporate behavior. A negligible fine doesn't send the same message as a substantial verdict against a reckless company. Thus, it may come as no surprise that corporate lobbyists, having already made tremendous strides in weakening regulatory safety standards, are putting enormous resources into weakening our courts and attacking judges and juries - and they're winning.
As stories of corporate and governmental malfeasance abound, it is deplorable that business groups devote their resources to campaigns to weaken the court system instead of working to prevent injuries and deaths and eliminate the need for lawsuits in the first place. Working toward better safety for workers and consumers is a win-win for everyone, and is the right thing to do.