HIGHTOWER: The Sneak Attack on Our Seventh Amendment
It took the bloody revolution of 1776 to establish America's treasured Bill of Rights ... and the power elites have been conniving ever since to undermine each and every one of them.One that is under massive assault today is our Seventh Amendment right to go to court when we've been wronged, to present our case before a jury of our peers. This assault is not coming openly from armed oppressors, but from fine-print, corporate artists who surreptitiously are rewriting the rules and compelling us to surrender our right to a fair legal process.This anti-democratic force likely includes your phone company, your employer, your credit card company, and other corporations that deal with you through consumer and employment agreements that you've probably never read, much less comprehended. Tucked into all that fine print, you're likely to find a paragraph or so of gobbledygook under the arcane heading of "arbitration of disputes." If you have a law degree and a magnifying glass, you might find out that such jumbles of jargon surgically remove your right to sue the corporation if you've been cheated, abused, or otherwise harmed by it.In place of your constitutional right to trial, this fine print substitutes an "arbitration panel" to settle any dispute with you. Instead of a fair judicial process, this corporate arbitration amounts to a kangaroo court in which the corporation gets to choose the arbitrators, limit the evidence you can present, prevent you from cross-examining witnesses, deny you a written record of the proceedings, and prevent you from appealing the decision.This is Jim Hightower saying ... Under these sneaky arbitration clauses, millions of Americans are unknowingly waiving their constitutional rights, allowing corporations to rule arbitrarily against us. To learn more about this assault on our basic freedoms, contact the Mandatory Arbitration Abuse Prevention Project 202-797-8600.