Friday, November 9, 2007

Conservative Authors Sue Regnery

Welcome to the Karmic Deli. How may I help you?

Yes, I’ll have a large order of irony with a side of schadenfreude, please. Oh yeah, and can I have the extra spicy hypocrisy?
Five authors have sued the parent company of Regnery Publishing, a Washington imprint of conservative books, charging that the company deprives its writers of royalties by selling their books at a steep discount to book clubs and other organizations owned by the same parent company.

You mean, no one would buy these crappy books unless they were in the 99-cent bin? Oh, snap!

But there’s more:

Some of the authors’ books have appeared on the New York Times best-seller list, including “Unfit for Command: Swift Boat Veterans Speak Out Against John Kerry,” by Mr. Corsi and John E. O’Neill (who is not a plaintiff in the suit), Mr. Patterson’s “Dereliction of Duty: The Eyewitness Account of How Bill Clinton Compromised America’s National Security” and Mr. Miniter’s “Shadow War: The Untold Story of How Bush Is Winning the War on Terror.” In the lawsuit the authors say that Eagle sells or gives away copies of their books to book clubs, newsletters and other organizations owned by Eagle “to avoid or substantially reduce royalty payments to authors.”

Anyone who’s spent five minutes in book publishing knows this shit goes on all the time. It's also the only reason these titles got on the best seller list to begin with. Pssst... fellas, I think you just got goosed by the free hand of the market. Suck it up!

The jokes just write themselves:

Joel Mowbray, author of “Dangerous Diplomacy: How the State Department Threatens America’s Security,” said he was particularly disappointed in Regnery and Eagle because they had so championed conservative authors. “These guys created the conservative book market,” Mr. Mowbray said. “Before them, conservatives were having to fight, generally unsuccessfully, to get books published.”

Imagine that. A company looking out for its own bottom line! You mean, it's not about the ideology? I’m shocked to learn a conservative publishing company cares more about profit! No one could have anticipated that!

But finally, we have the punchline:

But Mr. Miniter said, “We’re not looking for a payoff; we’re looking for justice.”

This, from Richard Miniter, Mr. Tort Reform himself, author of the 1996 paper, "Under Siege: New York’s Liability Ordeal”? In which he sounded the alarm about rising settlements in personal injury lawsuits?

Indeed, there is some reason to fear that New York and its taxpayers will be swept up in the most feared of all types of injury litigation: the “mass tort,” a new legal lifeform that arose as a mutation of the class action suit.  The most recent victim was Dow Corning, which was bankrupted by silicone breast implant litigation. Personal injury lawyers are looking avidly for the next mass tort.  Lead paint litigation may be their vehicle. With mass mailings and 1-800 numbers, they are recruiting thousands of plaintiffs to sue paint makers, landlords, realtors, former brownstone owners and many more for the reputed ill effects of lead paint.

Oh, poor Dow Corning! Victimized by those greedy women suffering from auto-immune disorders. and those parents whose kids have permanent disabilities due to injesting lead paint. They didn’t want justice, right Mr. Miniter? They were just a new breed of welfare cheats, eh?

Justice: it’s just for conservatives.

(h/t, Sadly No!)