Vice presidential candidate John Edwards made $40 million to $80 million -- he won't say how much -- pushing tort lawsuits, many of them related to cerebral palsy, which he attributed to doctors not doing C-sections.
What happened afterward? C-sections increased from 7 percent of all births to over 30 percent.
This is why I call lawyers "parasites." C-sections are bad for lots of reasons. They cost much more, they require a longer hospital stay, and they are riskier to the woman.
Have the extra C-sections at least reduced the rate of cerebral palsy? No. Not a bit. Turns out that, in most cases, the lawyers were wrong.
They were wrong about silicone breast implants, too. But they sure aren't giving the money back.
One of the most successful trial lawyers is Geoffrey Fieger. His law firm bills itself as the top personal injury firm in America.
"The higher ups in our society are protected really by the law, and the only thing an ordinary person can do is hire somebody like me, a warrior, to go after those higher-ups," he told me.
Fieger, like John Edwards, made millions on cerebral palsy cases. He denies that the C-section rate went up because doctors fear lawyers like him. He says doctors do C-sections to make money. Or because they are lazy. Of course, that makes me wonder why doctors weren't doing as many before the rash of lawsuits. Were doctors less lazy or less interested in money a few decades ago?
"I'm a trial lawyer," he said. "They turned the word trial lawyer into a four-letter word, and I'm telling you I'm the people's warrior, and I am proud to be an American trial lawyer."
And the money is good.
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