Next Week in Legal News

Yes—the addition of Legal News to Lawyerist has been an extraordinary success. But amazing just isn’t good enough. Don’t you want to know what you are going to know since you already know what you know? Don’t we all?

Here are some fantastic legal news stories you can look forward to in the coming week:

Anna Nicole Smith’s ex-boyfriend and ex-lawyer (conflict of interest?) is still in the doghouse with the court five years after her death. Why would anyone still be interested in this? Find out next week.

Thinking of bribing federal officials? It turns out that so long as you are smart about it, you might get away with it.

And what do you think of the idea of training law school students to be lawyers? If that seems relevant to you, you should check out Lawyerist’s Legal News next week to find out what some law schools are doing about the problem of law students having no experience.

In the meantime, have a great weekend.

(photo: Shutterstock: 17044696)

  • http://blog.simplejustice.us shg

    I too have been quite curious to see the reception your “new” receives, given that it’s invariably stale, having been plastered across the blawgosphere well before it appears here, or subject to incisive scrutiny, nuanced parsing and sophisticated commentary that appears to elude you.

    My suspicion is that this makes it perfect for Lawyerist readers.

    • Graham Martin

      If you hate Lawyerist and its readers so much, why do you spend so much time on the site and comment on so many of the posts? I suspect your energy could be better used elsewhere.

      • http://blog.simplejustice.us shg

        On the contrary, no blog needs my energy more. Whether I like it or not, n00bs eventually take responsibility for people’s lives.

        • http://www.constitutionaldaily.com BL1Y

          Zhundun dundun dundun dundun-dunnah
          Zhundun dundun dundun dundun-dunnah
          Zhundun dundun dundun dundun-dunnah
          MORTAL KOMBAT!

      • Blake

        you should be grateful, follow shg’s advice and in 30 years you too could be so washed up you give up even looking for work and instead fill your days and nights with constipated comments and tweets.

        • http://blog.simplejustice.us shg

          It may make you feel better to post a snappy comment like this, but it does nothing to change reality. Wrapping yourself up in your delusional snark won’t make you a better lawyer and certainly means nothing to my practice.

          What it does, however, is bolster the belief by more experienced lawyers that new lawyers lack the capacity to grasp that defensive arguments don’t enhance their abilities, and that they would rather deny problems than overcome them. Are you proud of yourself for confirming the worst? It’s so much easier than doing the hard labor of thinking.

          • Blake

            lol, like you’re mentoring “noob” lawyers with 9th grade insults all day and night. tell us how your comments help Graham “overcome” his “problems.”

            • http://blog.simplejustice.us shg

              A much better question. Graham has written a bunch of “news” posts, with essentially no comments from anyone. I’ve read them, and found them lacking, but he was new in his role here and needed time to find his stride.

              This post was self-congratulatory, which was the point where it was time to say something. If he wants to be the “news” guy here, then he has to do better than mail it in, and use pony express for delivery, if he wants to be relevant. Did anyone tell him? Apparently, he thought no one noticed, or worse yet, didn’t realize it himself. If he’s going to do a better job, he had to make a substantially better effort at providing stories when they are new and, if he ‘s going to add some level of commentary, think a whole lot deeper.

              And having given him time to get his feet wet, and as he apparently thought no one noticed he was mailing it in, it was time to let him know that he needs to try harder and do better. That’s what I did.

  • http://phillylawblog.wordpress.com/ Jordan Rushie

    Graham, let’s be honest. This was an absolute shit post and everyone who read it is now just a little bit dumber. And I’m not saying this to be nice, or to mentor you, or to teach you how to blog, I’m telling you this because I tried to read the article and it’s the first thing that came to my mind – “What a self congratulatory piece of shit article.” I closed the window before I was done reading it.

    Normally when such mean thoughts cross my mind I don’t bother to comment. I just hit CTRL-W and go read stuff worth my time. Because I’ll be honest – I don’t care enough to prod you to write better content. I just don’t. I’m content to leave you in blissful ignorance that what you say is worthwhile and has meaning.

    However, unlike my apathetic self who was content to ignore you, Scott did you a favor and told you the truth – this article sucks and you should do a better job if you want to be a writer. Yes, your baby is ugly.

    How did you respond? “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.”

    That is the response of a giant pussy who is so arrogant and self absorbed that the very notion of criticism is offensive. Everything you do is just so awesome, and so great, that anyone who can’t appreciate it is washed up, a loser, or scared of your brilliance.

    Guess what? Criticism is how we get better. It’s how we learn. And often it’s dished out by someone who knows what they are talking about. In this instance, it was Scott, who writes a blog that one or two people read, and he may have tried a few cases before a jury.

    More and more people seem to think that criticism is “meanness”, they don’t care to improve themselves, and anyone who tells the uncomfortable truth is a “troll.” No, we are entitled to praise, and similarly we are entitled to a world free of pain and criticism.

    I’m sorry, but your response reeks of immaturity and delusions of self grandeur.

    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

      I don’t really care if you or Scott or anyone is harsh or mean on Lawyerist, but there’s this strange idea running around that there are only two options: being a well-meaning jerk or rubbing tummies. There is a middle ground, and it’s where you’ll find constructive criticism and civil discourse.

      Like I said, your comments are welcome on Lawyerist whether you want to engage in harsh criticism, rubbing tummies, or civil and constructive criticism (provided your comments are coherent, relevant, and non-spammy), but you shouldn’t be surprised (or indignant) when your message is lost and people call you a jerk when you act like one, even if good intentions are lurking underneath your insults.

      • http://phillylawblog.wordpress.com/ Jordan Rushie

        Sam, therein lies the problem…

        You know what is less than civil?

        Getting a judgment against someone, attaching their bank accounts, and then when they call you and say “That was our money to pay the mortgage” the answer is “tough shit.

        Watching your client sit in jail because he had some misunderstanding with a cop, and then having to pay your fee plus some form of restitution.

        Escorting a constable into someone’s house to evict them at gunpoint, because they can’t afford to pay rent anymore and will not leave voluntarily.

        Learning your friend has gotten into disciplinary trouble, which you find out about by Googling her on the internet.

        Counseling a client that, although they are a quadrapalegic due to some big corporation’s negligence, there is weird federal law that shields them from immunity, so they are on the hook for all the bills.

        A judge who doesn’t find your legal theory all that novel, and asks you to submit a brief explaining why you should not be sanctioned.

        So you’ll have to pardon me if I’m unimpressed that young lawyers demand everyone “act civil” to cater to their delicate sensibilities. While we may wear dress clothes, use big works, and talk nicely in court the ramifications of the legal system are nothing but civil. I know that’s a little less than pleasant, and perhaps uncomfortably true, but that is how law works.

        If young lawyers are too big of pussies to deal with mean comments on the internet, how are the possibly equipped to deal with the realities of practicing law?

        • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

          In your examples, then, you are playing the part of the bad guy, right? And Graham is supposed to have the measured, level-headed response of the lawyer trying to help the client deal with the guy who took his money or tossed her in jail?

          I get your point. As lawyers, we frequently have to shut out bluster and the insults and focus on the legal issues. We also have to remain civil and constructive while doing so. Believe me, dealing with debt collectors and their lawyers was a near-constant illustration of this. I suppose your approach is like boot camp. If you think it’s helping you get your point across effectively, carry on. From the responses it tends to draw, though, I don’t think it’s working.

          The lawyers I’ve learned the most from were not the lawyers doing the blustering and insulting. I learned from the lawyers who taught me by example (and often taught me how to deal with the blustering and insulting people I had to deal with). They’ve showed me what’s expected of me by doing their best to meet high standards themselves — when dealing with debt collectors, opposing counsel, judges, and every other aspect of lawyering. When I see a great lawyer, it inspires me to learn how to be great, too. When I see someone acting like a jerk, it makes me want to fight back or do the opposite.

          • http://phillylawblog.wordpress.com/ Jordan Rushie

            I think you missed my point…

            What we do as lawyers is often less than pleasant, and downright uncivil. We garnish bank accounts, evict old ladies, and sometimes take a client’s college fund because they were wrongly accused of a criminal act. Sometimes we have to hurt people, and other times we have to watch our clients get hurt.

            Why then should anyone have to cater to the delicate sensibilities of millenials? If anything, they need to put on their big boy shoes. Otherwise they are going to be hopelessly inept to deal with the realities of law. Where people are going to be far meaner than say Greenfield.

            • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

              I think you missed mine. Some lawyers have to do those things. But when we do, we have a choice about how we do them — just as we have a choice about how we interact with one another.

              • http://phillylawblog.wordpress.com/ Jordan Rushie

                Let me be crystal clear here… I don’t really have a message. I’m not trying to mentor anyone, or show some tough love.

                The baby lawyers who post on here need to stop being little whiny pussy crybabies. Otherwise, they need to enter a different profession.

                Judges aren’t going to pull punches just because you’re young. (“I enjoyed reading your motion. It was very good. Unfortunately I think it’s sanctionable.”) Neither is the state bar, opposing counsel, or your own clients.

                Barney and Mr. Rodgers might have been oh so nice to everyone when you were growing up, fostering a world of self esteem where everyone plays nice. Unfortunately, that world ended the second you got your bar card.

                Being a lawyer means being a grown up. And grown up land is a harsh place. If millenials are so sensitive that they need everything presented to them nicely, in a way that doesn’t hurt their feelings, they should go do something else.

                • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

                  I guess I’m unwilling to conclude that because people are collegial — which is what I’m in favor of — in blog comments, that makes them whiny pussy crybabies.

                  • http://phillylawblog.wordpress.com/ Jordan Rushie

                    Sam, you are still missing my point.

                    The millenials are asking everyone to bend over backwards to their sensibilities. You know what happens when you screw up a motion? The judge usually says really mean things about you, on the record, and you’re forced to show your client. You know what happens when your work sucks? Typically the partner yells as you, calls you useless, and has to debate whether you should still have a job.

                    They don’t do these things because they are big mean bullies. They do it because what we do is important, and our clients have serious issues at stake. This is a serious, high stakes profession.

                    Given the context, it’s amazing to me that millenials expect the entire world to bend over backwards to suit their sensibilities by demanding what you call “being cordial.”

                    They don’t want to adapt to the realities of the profession – they want the profession to adapt to them. Then they cry when it turns out it doesn’t work like that.

                    • http://lawyerist.com/author/samglover/ Sam Glover

                      Where have you met millennials asking everyone to bend over backwards to their sensibilities? Scott makes the same kind of sweeping statements, but I don’t see any evidence that it is a sweeping problem. It’s the same kind of thing every generation says about younger generations, and it rarely has any basis in fact.