November 29, 2003

Class-Action suit against "Big Booze"?

Gold diggin' lawyer David Boise (remember him from Al Gore vs The Rule of Law?) and some of his little friends are seeking to bring a class action lawsuit against several alcohol distributers on the premise that they wrecklessly advertise to minors.

Maybe it's not my place to judge these assholes, but, apparently the suits that attempted to suck the tobacco companies', McDonalds' and Microsoft's customers dry weren't enough to satisfy his lust for criminalizing the marketplace.

Several members of the alcohol industry are facing a lawsuit filed last week in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia that seeks to recover "unlawful profits" these companies made by allegedly marketing and advertising their products to underage drinkers.

They profitted from advertising? I thought advertising cost money. If any minors actually bought the booze then there are some liquor stores that have committed a crime. This is like blaming the gun manufacturer for an armed robbery.

But, exactly what crimes have the alcohol distributers and advertisers committed?

According to the lawsuit, examples of this can be seen in Diageo's use of the Captain Morgan character to represent its spiced rum brand as well as Coors promotions that were tied to Scary Movie 3, a PG-13 movie. Noted also were Bacardi advertisements in magazines such as Stuff, FHM and Spin, which are read disproportionately by consumers too young to drink.

Wow. There's yer open and shut case right there! Captain Morgan, a painting of a pirate-type guy, is now some kind of fuzzy little cartoon character that entices the kiddies into washing down their Pixy Stix with some spiced rum. And they've tied a promotion to a horror movie spoof, and have even advertised in music magazines!

None of these actions have broken any laws that actually exist anywhere, of course. But I guess that doesn't mean that they shouldn't be made to defend themselves in a court of Law anywho.

If advertising the smooth rich flavor of a Coors Lite in a magazine that might be read by someone under the age of 21 is a crime (which, BTW, it is not), then Mr Boise and Co. need to announce their real intention: to criminalize the advertising of adult beverages in all magazines other than porno mags.
To do that: you take your case to the Legislative branch, not the Judicial branch.

But, then, this has nothing to do with protecting TheChildren(TM). It's all about trial lawyers who are so drunk on litigation that they see big green elephants everywhere where a profit is being made by anyone but themselves.

Posted by Tuning Spork at November 29, 2003 07:02 PM
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