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01.01.2009 0

There is Nothing New Under the Sun

  • On: 01/26/2009 09:55:21
  • In: Barack Obama
  • By Don Todd

    “What has been will be again,
    what has been done will be done again;
    there is nothing new under the sun.”

    —Ecclesiastes 1:9

    The old politics are alive and well in the Obama Administration. In his first three days in office the President has moved quickly to enact political payoffs to those who financed and supported his quest for the Oval Office.

    First, in a hat tip to those in the leftist, “America Last” blogosphere, Mr. Obama on January 22nd issued a meaningless “Executive Order” to close the prisoner of war camp at Guantanamo Cuba. The Order states the prison will be closed within a year. If it is not he will simply issue another “Executive Order,” saying “Oops.” By that time the Hard Left blogosphere will have moved on to more pressing issues.

    Second and more significantly, with the President’s support and encouragement, the Senate on January 22nd passed in a vote of 61 to 36 “The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009.” The House had passed the bill on January 9th. This is, plain and simple, a huge payoff to the trial lawyers, which will allow them to reap yet another parasitical harvest from the nation’s dwindling number of private employers.

    The bill, in effect, removes the statute of limitations from Title VII of the Civil Rights Act barring wage discrimination. In real life, what that does is give everyone a chance to make a killing in the coming wage discrimination lawsuit lottery, regardless of where, when, or why the alleged slight took place.

    Here is how it works. You wait until the person who you want to say discriminated against you dies and hopefully records are destroyed. Then you file a law suit claiming you were discriminated against and wait for the money to start rolling in. That’s what Lilly Ledbetter did (well after she had retired, no less). But she lost—much to the dismay of the trial lawyers and their political hand-puppets at the time. The law under which she sued had a six month statute of limitations clause, meaning you had to file your lawsuit within six months of the plaintiff’s discovery that the discrimination had taken place.

    Congress could have extended the time limit at the time of the Ledbetter letdown. But they wisely chose not to.

    And then came the trial lawyers’ buddy Barack—the proud recipient of 94.7 percent of law professor contributions in the recent presidential campaign. Obama promised this to the trial bar during the campaign. He is now in the process of delivering. The obvious effect will be another incentive for employers to hire as few people as possible to shield themselves as much as they can from greed-motivated lawsuits. In fact, economists at Rand found in 1992 that wrongful termination suits cause a decline in employment about equivalent to a 10 percent decrease in wages.

    Obama and the lawmakers who supported this outrage know that. How could they not? But in Obama’s “new politics of change,” as in the, “Old Politics as Usual,” political debts must be paid. In this case his political debt will be paid at the cost of corporate growth and real jobs.

    Don Todd is an ALG News contributor.

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