5. Monster's Gall
Fine, Dennis Herrera. We won't accuse you of playing tit for tat with Monster Beverage (MNST), but that still doesn't make this whole legal game any less childish.
The San Francisco city attorney announced Monday his lawsuit against the energy-drink maker, accusing Monster of marketing its high-caffeine energy drinks to minors despite established health risks. Herrera's move comes a mere week after Monster sued him for demanding the company cut back its caffeine levels and change its ad-campaign. Monster, which Herrera called the "industry's worst offender" when it comes to targeting pre-teens, saw its shares sink over 2% Monday on the news. The stock tumbled another 6% on Wednesday afternoon after Monster missed the Street's Q1 earnings estimate by 9 cents.
"Our lawsuit is not a reaction to their lawsuit," said Herrera. "We were proceeding on this path in the event that we would be unable to come to a resolution."To which Monster's legal team replied: Hey! No fair you icky attorney! We sued you first! No tag-backs or sue-backs allowed! OK. They didn't really say that, yet they may as well have, considering the way this whole juvenile drama has unfolded since 14-year-old Anais Fournier died of "cardiac arrhythmia due to caffeine toxicity" after drinking two 710 milliliter cans of Monster Energy drink, in December 2011. The tragic case threw the spotlight onto the energy-drink industry, and by the summer of 2012 it became a cause celebre for slobbering politicians from New York to California seeking a seemingly soft target.
Hey, can you blame the pols for piling on? When the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Heart Association are on your side, you would think that Monster would fall quicker than Baghdad! Unbelievably, however, that wasn't the case! Even while being painted as a Frankenstein, Monster refused to be scared off by the pitchfork-wielding politicians. Monster vigorously defended itself in the Fournier case, saying she had a pre-existing heart condition and also repeated its claims that its cans clearly state the required safety warnings. Most shocking was the Corona, Calif.-based company's decision last week to raise the stakes by launching a preemptive strike against Herrera in the form of a lawsuit. Monster says Herrera's effort poses "undue burdens on interstate commerce" and violates it's constitutionally protected right to "commercial speech." The lawsuit also contends that Herrera is more "motivated by publicity rather than science." Of course he is you morons! He's a politician! That's what they do. More than that though, he's also the guy holding screen shots from your Web site listing an 11-year-old as a "Monster Army Major" and a 6-year-old as a "Reserve." Sorry, Monster. That's not science, that's just stupidity. Not to mention the smoking gun in Herrera's case against you. Or, to continue with the playground-speak: Herrera is rubber and you are glue. So shut your mouths and play nice, because whatever you say bounces off him and sticks to you!
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