A recent book review appearing on the Federalist Society website takes aim at The Conservative Case for Class Actions, by Vanderbilt Law Professor Brian T. Fitzpatrick. Fitzpatrick’s book seeks to provide a case as to why conservatives should support class actions.
The reviewer, contends that “ultimately, Fitzpatrick’s thesis fails on perhaps the most fundamental conservative principle of all—seeing the world as it is, instead of how we wish it to be. Class actions are not on the verge of disappearing, because of arbitration or any other aspect of Supreme Court jurisprudence. Class actions vastly increase the regulatory burden on companies, creating issues that government enforcers would never bother to pursue. Class actions typically do not meaningfully benefit class members, but they do enrich class counsel,” the review reads in part. “Class actions are not driven by market forces, but rather the profit motive has been distorted to incentivize copycat, abusive filings. Finally, class actions as currently practiced have no basis in this country’s legal tradition, have effected a radical change in the risk defendants face for many types of claims, and promote collectivization at the expense of individual liberty. Aside from the plaintiffs’ bar, no one should be happy with how class actions are litigated in the country today, least of all conservatives.”
The review was written by Will Barnette, associate general counsel for The Home Depot.