Said Terry Bollea, (Hulk Hogan) about his lawsuit against Gawker, which he characterizes as "actually protecting the First Amendment and carving out that little piece of privacy."
Also quoted in the linked article — which goes to The Washington Post — is Donald Trump, who brought up the Hulk Hogan lawsuit in his recent interview with the WaPo editorial board:
"I mean I must tell you that the Hulk Hogan thing was a tremendous shock to me because — not only the amount and the fact that he had the victory — because for the most part I think libel laws almost don’t exist in this country."Not that Hulk Hogan's case was a libel case. (It was for the invasion of privacy.)
"You know, based on, based on everything I’ve seen and watched and everything else, and I just think that if a paper writes something wrong — media, when I say paper I’m talking about media. I think that they can do a retraction if they’re wrong."Here's the full interview with Trump. Let's get a little more context, because someone in the comments the other day was asking me to try to make sense of what Trump said about libel. He does leap around and make associations freely. If you're unsympathetic to him, it's easy to say he's uninformed, incoherent, and doesn't care if it shows. If you're sympathetic, you can infer and interpolate and make the connections yourself. For example: Hulk Hogan's case surprised him because he thought the courts leaned heavily in favor of the media's rights and would get away with publishing whatever they want and that therefore lawsuits — whether they are based on libel or privacy — would fail.
You may want to know — before you read what I have to say about the transcript — whether I'm sympathetic or unsympathetic to Donald Trump. Isn't everyone on one side or the other? Actually, no. Somehow, I find myself resting comfortably in the middle. I care about seeing how other people react, and it's better to stay uncommitted. Cruel neutrality. It's real. I couldn't even tell you who I'll vote for in the Wisconsin primary next week. I may decide on my walk to the polling place.
Ugh! The transcript! The discussion of libel goes on so long, and I'm engaging with it line by line. It no longer belongs at the end of this post. I'm cutting and pasting what I've been writing into a new post, which will be up fairly soon.