How to Feed a Lawyer (and Other Irreverent Observations from the Legal Underground)

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Little optimistic to say it "doesn't stand a chance" because it's based on a bullshit theory, isn't it? Especially considering how many state resolutions have passed on the strength of doctor's anecdotes, the alleged helplessness of insurers, and fake Stella awards already.

I'd like to think that it doesn't stand a chance because there are a few Republican senators left who believe in federalism and states' rights. But I may just be an optimist.


The negative pregnant here is Evan's implicit concession that the Class Action Fairness Act is not "rotten at its core" or founded on a myth. If I were one to misuse semi-colons and parentheses, I'd wink here.


Ted, you misuse so much, why stop there?


Ted and Matt: Nothing like a tort-reform post to liven up a weblog, huh? But Ted, I know how to make a concession explicit, and the implicit one you attribute to me is a little wacky. I said that the med-mal law was "founded . . . on the myth of 'junk' malpractice lawsuits." Does it follow that I'm suggesting, as you say, that the class-action law wasn't founded on myths? Of course not. The class-action law was also founded on myths, albeit different ones--for example, the myth that state law judges can't be fair to corporate defendants. I've written about that myth explicitly on this weblog, as I'm sure you know. Just so we're clear . . .


Just jokes, Evan, just jokes.


Evan: Your post says the med-mal reform is failing because it's "rotten at its core" because its founded on a myth.

The syllogism is thus:
1. Premise: If a bill is founded on a myth, it's rotten at its core. (Your post.)
2. Premise: If a bill is rotten at its core, it will fail. (Your post.)
3. Premise: The med-mal bill is founded on a myth. (Your post.)
4. Therefore the med-mal bill is failing. (1 & 2 & 3)

(I disagree with Premise #3, but that's another story.)

However, the same logic implicitly and inexorably leads thus:
5. Premise: The Class Action Fairness Act passed.
6. If a bill does not fail, it is not rotten at its core (contrapositive of 2)
7. If a bill is not rotten at its core, it is not based on a myth (contrapositive of 1)
8. Therefore the Class Action Fairness Act is not rotten at its core (5 & 6)
9. Therefore the Class Action Fairness Act is not based on a myth (7 & 8)

Cheers. Semi-colon, hyphen, right-parentheses.

Matt, I didn't see your comment before, but the med-mal reform bill changes the default presumption of state laws, but, last I checked, permits individual states to affirmatively opt out of the federal scheme. I think a states-righter can vote for this bill without hypocrisy.


What I'd like to see on Overlawyered in more 9-point syllogisms. You'd risk losing your audience, but some of us would be wildly entertained.

Colon, hyphen, right-parentheses.


Hey, you should see the math problem I did on pointoflaw.com to demonstrate Bayesian statistics.



I'm a little surprised that we've not heard from you on the welcome fall of Hank Greenberg, who once compared those of us who represent plaintiffs to terrorists. Particularly considering the document dust-up in Bermuda which was the final nail in the coffin. That's some juicy stuff, as far as corporate downfalls go. Far more Kozlowski than Ebbers.

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