Daniel Fisher – not otherwise known to me – writes for Forbes, covering “finance, the law, and how the two interact.” Naturally, given where he works, he hates plaintiffs’ lawyers, which is his right and privilege in this great and free country of ours. So his first reaction to the VW emissions-cheating scandal was to criticize – not VW – but a class-action law firm threatening to sue VW on behalf of consumers.
His point is that the buyers of the supposedly-clean-but-actually-filthy-dirty VW diesels weren’t in any direct sense harmed by VW’s fraud. By disabling pollution controls except when the car was being tested, VW managed to pack more performance and fuel economy into a car than it could have done while also actually meeting the emissions targets. So when VW issues a recall notice it will in effect be asking consumers to trade their existing car for one that performs worse and gets lower miles-per-gallon. So, he says, except for a few Marin County cranks, they’re mostly going to ignore the recall.
Therefore, the plaintiffs’ lawyers are being silly again.
Tort reform, tort reform, sis, boom, bah!
Now, I don’t know what it is you need to know to be a Certified Financial Analyst – that’s the credential Fisher claims – but apparently it isn’t logic or economics.