I returned to the office today, haven't had time to read the SCOTUS opinions in Cuomo v. Clearing House Association, and won't get a chance to read them until this weekend. Therefore, I'll save my bloviating about it until next week. By that time, I should have some decent commentary written by others to pilfer and/or mock. One preliminary reaction, though: I didn't see this one coming, any more than I saw Ginsburg and the other court liberals joining forces with The Court Jester, then letting him write the majority opinion. I guess I should have taken the questions asked during oral argument by Roberts and Ginsburg at face value, since they indicated that those two weren't playing devil's advocates after all. Instead, they were telegraphing their ultimate positions. Then again, according to today's American Banker, both sides were caught flat-footed by the Supreme Court's siding with Andy Cuomo. As far as the practice of trying to predict human behavior is concerned, it's always useful for a bellowing bovine to realize that he's just as much of a dull-normal cud-chewer as the rest of the herd.
By the by: I heard that Andy was still so excited by this unexpected decision that he spit up a little while being burped by Eliot Spitzer this morning after his bottle.
On a completely unrelated topic, TJX continues to pay various aggrieved entities and natural persons over the massive data security breach we've been following for the last several years. Last week, it was reported that TJX Cos. will pay $9.75 million to settlle actions brought by 41 state Attorneys General over the breach.
[I]t will pay $2.5 million to create a data security fund for states as well as a settlement amount of $5.5 million and $1.75 million to cover expenses related to the states' investigations. But TJX stressed that it "firmly believes" that it did not violate any consumer protection or data security laws.
TJX must also certify that its computer system meets detailed data security requirements specified by the states and must encourage the development of new technologies to address weaknesses in the U.S. payment card system.
In April 2008, TJX Cos. offered to set aside $24 million to reimburse customers who through their MasterCard credit cards were defrauded because of a data breach last year. A similar agreement was made with Visa-card issuing banks the prior November for up to $40.9 million to help banks cover costs including replacing customers payment cards and covering fraudulent charges.
In January, TJX Cos. offered a 15 percent discount to its customers during a "Customer Appreciation" day to reward customers' loyalty as the company dealt with the breach.
TJX also denied that it had anything to do with the death of Michael Jackson, the downing of another Airbus, or that recent nasty outbreak of E. Coli bacteria in ground beef, although that doesn't mean it won't eventually be forced to pay something to settle claims related to those events made at some point in the future.
Data security breaches: gifts that keep on giving.