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

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I don't think the name change would work, but I have no objection to using the tactics of the bad guys. I mean, they work. You can say "frivolous lawsuit" a bazillion times in the same amount of time it would take you to explain that, no, the story of the lady putting contraceptive jelly on toast is nonsense.


It would be hard for me to change all my stationary and business cards. I suppose I could become Greedy Justice Seeker, but it won't have the same ring as Greedy Trial Lawyer.


And what credible reformer uses the story of contraceptive jelly on toast?

(And what are the odds that Mythago has used the urban legend of the Ford Pinto in opposing reform?)


Thanks are owed to Ted for providing an excellent example of the kind of tactics I'm talking about. Note the use of the phrase 'urban legend', which casts claims about the Ford Pinto not merely as exaggerated or slanted, but as wholly fictional. Hell, "tort reform" itself is sheer brilliance as a phrase.

And what credible reformer uses the story of contraceptive jelly on toast?

I will take this as your blessing to regard any tort-reform advocate who uses wholly fictional lawsuits, or distortions of lawsuits so bad that they might as well be fiction, as not credible and unworthy of the mantle of tort reform.

People are much more willing to believe clever stories and sound bites than the truth, especially if the truth takes time to explain. I'm sure that Ted understands this frustration from his point of view on the Pinto: "they blew up because Ford wouldn't pay $5 for a part" is much easier to understand, and pass on, than a long dissertation about industry practices at the time and the moral rightness of cost-benefit analyses. Happily for Ted, the problem of the sound bit beating out thoughtful consideration in the public's mental real-estate generally benefits his side.

Robert LeRoux Hernandez

After almost thirty years I've jumped ship from litigation and instead of suing them, am seeking to work with employers to avoid discrimination and harassment litigation. For many years I loved trial lawyering. I loved ATLA. I am disappointed by the abandonment of the words "trial lawyer" to corporate America and the right, but perhaps it foretells a sinking ship as litigation sputters as a tool for civil justice and social change. Please check out my blog on this sad event, "The profession formerly known as lawyering." http://employmentrightsblog.directlex.com/2006/07/19/the-profession-formerly-known-as-lawyering/


While Ted abhors "fictional lawsuits", he has no problem citing cases from other countries to support his claim of the "high cost of our legal system."

I guess his outrage is only within very narrowly defined boundaries.

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