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posted by janrinok on Thursday June 23, @09:09AM   Printer-friendly

US Supreme Court rejects Bayer's bid to end Roundup lawsuits:

The US Supreme Court has rejected Bayer's bid to dismiss legal claims by customers who say its weedkiller causes cancer, as the German company seeks to avoid potentially billions of dollars in damages.

The justices turned away a Bayer appeal's on Tuesday and left in place a lower court decision that upheld $25m in damages awarded to California resident Edwin Hardeman, a user of its product Roundup, who blamed his cancer on the pharmaceutical and chemical giant's glyphosate-based weedkillers.

The Supreme Court's ruling dealt a blow to Bayer as the company manoeuvres to limit its legal liability in thousands of cases. The justices have a second Bayer petition pending on a related issue that they could act upon in the coming weeks.

Roundup-related lawsuits have dogged Bayer since it acquired the brand as part of its $63bn purchase of agricultural seeds and pesticides maker Monsanto in 2018.

[...] The lawsuits against Bayer have said the company should have warned customers of the alleged cancer risk.

[...] Bayer plans to replace glyphosate in weedkillers for the US residential market of non-professional gardeners with other active ingredients.


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  • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 23, @09:34AM (10 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 23, @09:34AM (#1255546)

    I can't think of a good reason why Bayer chose to buy Monsanto. These lawsuits were already happening in 2018, it was more than some simple writing on a wall. Was Monsanto worth so much more than $63B that it was worth the risk?

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  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Runaway1956 on Thursday June 23, @10:57AM (7 children)

    by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Thursday June 23, @10:57AM (#1255554) Homepage Journal

    Asking that question indicates that you have little idea how much value Monsanto had. Or, how much claimed value. Monsanto claimed to own rights to most of the world's food seed stock. They claimed rights to seed that they never developed, with the prime example being farms in Iraq that were required to destroy their own seed stocks, then to purchase Monsanto seed.

    If a rent seeker can collect on every meal eaten by every animal and every human on earth, the profits are astounding. Did you catch that compounded interest thing? First, they get rent on every feeding of the cows. Then they get rent when you eat the cows.

    If you grow anything, you should seek out legacy seed, then you should save the seed from your harvest. Otherwise, you are paying Monsanto/Bayer every time you drop a seed into your garden.

    --
    There is a supply side shortage of pronouns. You will take whatever you are offered.
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 23, @09:16PM (5 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 23, @09:16PM (#1255683)

      I'm just a bit skeptical about the Iraq thing without a citation. Iraq seems like the kind of place where a militia full of farmers is no idle threat. If they've got seed and guns, why would they bother listening to some little pipsqueak from Monsanto, or even letting him live?

      The only answer I can think of that's reasonable is that a more powerful militia forced their hands, and that it was backed by the usual suspects. Namely, the USA and if that's true, then that's the real story.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 23, @09:33PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Thursday June 23, @09:33PM (#1255687)

        Monsanto has been known, like Shell and others, to hire mercenaries.

        However in Iraq my understanding was that it was political, and no farmer is going to want to shoot a local policeman from down the road.

        Hard power in this case was weaker than soft power.

      • (Score: 5, Informative) by Runaway1956 on Thursday June 23, @11:35PM (3 children)

        by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Thursday June 23, @11:35PM (#1255699) Homepage Journal

        https://rense.com/general62/seeds.htm [rense.com]

        Iraq law Requires Seed Licenses November 13, 2004

        "According to Order 81, paragraph 66 - [B], issued by L. Paul Bremer [CFR], the people in Iraq are now prohibited from saving seeds and may only plant seeds for their food from licensed, authorized U.S. distributors.

        The paragraph states, "Farmers shall be prohibited from re-using seeds of protected varieties or any variety mentioned in items 1 and 2 of paragraph [C] of Article 14 of this chapter."

        https://www.mintpressnews.com/kissingers-occupation-iraq-destroys-agriculture/226407/ [mintpressnews.com]
        https://www.countercurrents.org/iraq-cymru030305.htm [countercurrents.org]

        --
        There is a supply side shortage of pronouns. You will take whatever you are offered.
        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 24, @06:12AM

          by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 24, @06:12AM (#1255752)

          Paul Bremer, Baby Bush’s viceroy of conquered Iraq. How fucking long ago that was, how much justice still remains outstanding.

        • (Score: 2) by captain normal on Friday June 24, @05:34PM (1 child)

          by captain normal (2205) on Friday June 24, @05:34PM (#1255864)

          Yep...all done by folk from the GOP.

          --
          “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” Thomas Edison
          • (Score: 2) by Runaway1956 on Friday June 24, @06:13PM

            by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Friday June 24, @06:13PM (#1255873) Homepage Journal

            Actually, I think it was mostly done by neoconservatives. GOP was probably onboard. Can you point to any congress critters who opposed it? Let's remember that Democrats are all onboard with TPP and other shit trade agreements. It doesn't matter to any of them how many third world people might be impoverished, so long as they see a good return on their investments. Monsanto patents are part and parcel of all those trade agreements.

            --
            There is a supply side shortage of pronouns. You will take whatever you are offered.
    • (Score: 2) by corey on Friday June 24, @10:46PM

      by corey (2202) on Friday June 24, @10:46PM (#1255937)

      Yeah I remember that Michael Moore movie 15 or so years ago about Monsanto and how they were locking farmers into contracts with only them to buy their seed and suing others into bankruptcy if they had any blow over onto their farms.

      Evil company deserves to die and their dumbarse owners can go with it.

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 24, @05:30AM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 24, @05:30AM (#1255742)

    While I partly agree, Bayer made the mistake to think that the US justice system would treat it similar as a US company.
    Those lawsuits against Monsanto had been going on for a very long time and nothing meaningful ever came out of them. After Bayer bought them, suddenly a lot of them start moving and making significant payouts.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 24, @06:16AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 24, @06:16AM (#1255753)

      European companies are both greedy and dumb to the ways of the US.