Mass Torts: State of the Art

Liability for Changing Someone's Ethics?

What if there was a drug that could change a consequentialist into a deontologist? In other words, what if you gave this hypothetical drug to someone and he went from being a "needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few" sort of guy to a right v. wrong, rules sort of guy? Now what if that drug was prescribed based soley on the perfectly sound decision to relieve him of depression?

To grossly oversimplify, giving serotonin-boosting anti-depressants turned consequentialists (yes, I know there are more flavors of them than of ice cream at Baskin-Robbins but those flavors are just their common deontological side peeping through in different places) into right/wrong thinkers. Better (depending upon your perspective) yet, it made them more rational in "the greatest misfortune that may befall a man is great good fortune for his neighbor" sorts of experiments in which people are tested to see if they'd cut off their own noses to spite their neighbor's face. See: "Serotonin Selectively Influences Moral Judgment and Behavior Through Effects on Harm Aversion". ht: Marginal Revolution

Those are pretty big changes. They affect politics, friendships and so world views. I brought it up though not to discuss liability for making or prescribing such beneficial medicines but rather, I must admit, for a wholly different purpose - to very briefly discuss picking a jury. My number one rule of jury selection, from the defense perspective, is to identify and get rid of depressed veniremen. They tend not to care about rules and to be far too willing to cut off your client's ear and thereafter paint their masterpieces out of piles of her money.

Trackbacks (0) Links to blogs that reference this article Trackback URL
Comments (0) Read through and enter the discussion with the form at the end
Vorys, Sater, Seymour and Pease LLP
Columbus, Ohio
52 East Gay Street
PO Box 1008
Columbus, Ohio 43216-1008
Phone:
614.464.6400
Washington, D.C.
1909 K Street NW
Suite 900
Washington, D.C. 20006-1152
Phone:
202.467.8800
Cleveland, Ohio
200 Public Square
Suite 1400
Cleveland, Ohio 44114-2327
Phone:
216.479.6100
Cincinnati, Ohio
301 East Fourth Street
Suite 3500, Great American Tower
PO Box 0236
Cincinnati, Ohio 45202
Phone:
513.723.4000
Akron, Ohio
106 South Main Street
Suite 1100
Akron, Ohio 44308
Phone:
330.208.1000
Houston, Texas
700 Louisiana Street
Suite 4100
Houston, Texas 77002
Phone:
713.588.7000
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
500 Grant Street
Suite 4900
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15219
Phone:
412.904.7700