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Monday, October 3, 2011
Sovereign Immunity and the Asbestos Inquisitions
The National Socialist extremes of the Franklin Delano Roosevelt administration during World War II set the stage for one of the biggest showdowns in American legal history just a few decades later: The Asbestos Inquisitions.
In Dangerous When In Power, (Reason magazine, March, 2007) Overlawered.Com's Walter Olson describes how the US Navy threw existing asbestos precautions to the wind while constructing the war machine used by FDR to defeat the National Socialist regimes of Hitler and Mussolini, and then left the American workers to twist in the wind with no government compensation after the war was won.
The shipyard workers did win compensation, eventually, from parties who had nothing at all to do with their plight: asbestos manufacturers.
As usual, the culprit is the government, not the individual.