Tuesday, November 4, 2008

I was reading the other day about someone suing Oprah for extortion...

So I decided I'd go and look up a few "tricky" people and see what I can find!

In 1991, Richard Overton sued Anheuser-Busch for false and misleading advertising under Michigan State law. The complaint specifically referenced ads involving, among other things, fantasies of beautiful women in tropical settings that came to life for two men driving a Bud Light truck. He also included one claim that appears to allege that he personally suffered injuries as a result of the false advertisements. I think he just ran after the beer truck for a mile and scraped his knee or something. A number of publications and websites parodied this lawsuit by focusing only on the third claim for relief and ignoring Mr. Overton's civic minded efforts to prevent Bud Light from making false or misleading claims in its advertisements. That happens to me all the time, I just don't sue over it. I just thought it happened to everyone. While it does appear that the third claim for relief is based on alleged injuries (including "personal injury to his health both physical and mental, emotional distress, and financial loss in excess of $10,000") that guy can really drink a lot, suffered by Mr. Overton in as a result of Anheuser-Busch's alleged false advertising, that is only one of three claims made in the complaint. That's a bit over the top, even for a drunkard with a horrible idea.

We all know that when you open a beer, you do not attract supermodels. That happens when you open your bank account.

In 1995, Robert Lee Brock sued himself for $5 million. He claimed that he had violated his own civil rights and religious beliefs by allowing himself to get drunk and commit crimes which landed him in the Indian Creek Correctional Center in Virginia, serving a 23 year sentence for grand larceny and breaking and entering. What could he possibly have to gain by suing himself? Since being in prison prevented him from having an income, he expected the state to pay. This case was thrown out.

Well, now that plan is out the window, We should aim for this one...

On a $5 dare from friends, 13-year-old Justin Porter climbed 35 feet up an electric transmission tower. Who was to know such an adventure might prove dangerous? 19,700 volts later, his mother, Anna Thebeau, is suing the electric utility, Ameren, saying it should have fenced off the tower against trespassers, should have posted a big warning sign on it, should have designed it so that it could not be climbed up, and should have insulated the wires far overhead. Because it's unlikely that anyone, anyone, would be so stupid as to not see a "Danger High Voltage" sign no matter what the size...

At least he made $5 off the whole deal.

-Ari Racz


  1. I'm Richard Overton. And none of what you see on the web is accurate, past my name and I sued A-B.

  2. Well, Richard, what exactly did you sue for?