Sunday, April 24, 2016

Overwhelming Majority of New Texas Lawyers Employed Just Fine 'n' Dandy

Media continues its wholesale war against our nation's most sacred institutions.  For example, this article is titled "Nearly one-fourth of Texas law grads are unemployed or underemployed."  This inflammatory yellow journalism should have no place in the American landscape, but sadly the recasting of benign or even exemplary scenarios as controversial has become a profit-driven plague upon the smart consumer's fragile eyes.

This article should be re-titled as "Over three fourths of Texas law grads well-poised to make make millions over lucrative legal careers."  It's literally the exact same title for anyone who understands math and shyster economics.

This isn't the only part of the article that can be rewritten for a more intelligent audience.  For example, review this line:
More than 13 percent of newly minted Texas lawyers are unemployed, which is actually worse than in 2010 — the year the Great Recession hit the Texas legal industry the hardest — when 9 percent of Texas law school graduates could not find a job after graduation.
Let's make this discourse a bit more adult and less chock full of mom's basement depression.
Due to the booming national economy outside of law school, more graduates than ever are seeking opportunities in exciting new industries.  While only thirteen percent of law graduates are unemployed, that's actually an increase over 2010, when more graduates opted for the safe legal careers readily available to those holding law degrees.
In the yester-year, journalists understood these things.  Now, this new generation just can't throw a bone to convoluted wealth transfer schemes.  Look at this offensive rubble:
Independent legal industry analysts point to several factors, including low oil prices hurting the economy and drastic tort reform measures that limited or ended various kinds of litigation.
Biased hearsay.  Let's rewrite:
Attention-seeking communists point to contracting needs for legal services, but completely ignore the massive need for lawyers to understand continually more ambiguously complex corporate regulations, and further ignore the immense justice gap caused by poor people not being to afford legal services at their present stratospheric rates, which can only come down through a higher supply of labor to those of us who only look at self-serving solutions.
Simple correction of these biases fixes kinks that occur later in the article.  To wit, this:
Recent data indicates that the demand for legal services has remained flat since the end of the Great Recession.

The number of full-time practicing lawyers in Texas increased by less than 3,500 during the past four years — from 37,600 in 2012 to 41,000 now, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Yet, the nine Texas law schools — 10 once the University of North Texas College of Law graduates its first class next year — continue to pump out more than 2,000 new lawyers annually.
Is easily and consistently rewritten to this:
Texas law schools continue to meet their social responsibility by graduating more than enough lawyers to meet the demand for legal services.  Despite some publications suggesting that these practices produce a debt-strangled excess to be discarded like the carcasses of dead cows stripped of usable beef and skin, research suggests that these graduates move into orgasm-inducing "JD Advantage" jobs.  Obviously, there's not a 1,000-person surplus of dead body lawyers in Texas being spit out annually,  That's just cray-cray.
At the end of the day, the article need point out only one reliable statistic, which is sadly buried halfway down the article:
On the upside, BLS reports that the median annual salary for practicing lawyers in Texas is $137,000.
If anything, there's too few lawyers.  No wonder poor people can't afford them if they're bringing home that kind of bacon.

Thank God there's no way to re-write that statistic to make lawyers look bad.  We're doing just fine, thank you, and the market can easily absorb 2,000 new lawyers every year in the Lone Star State.  Keep pumpin' the golden milkshake, Texas, and America will continue to drink.


  1. Even the 87% employed rate is garbage. If roughly half of recent law grad around the county are landing full-time positions where bar passage is required - and several of those position are not lawyer gigs - that means that many thousands of JDs each year are taking what they can get. They are working as bartenders, school teachers, insurance agents, doc review monkeys, salesmen, etc.

    Regarding the $137K reported median income, this is based on self reporting - and it is from a fraction of the number of practicing lawyers in the state. No one is going to check salaries or tax returns. There is nothing to stop someone from inflating their income or adding dollars to the actual amount.

  2. Does the BLS number only account for people getting paid as employees? Because that would leave out the stratospheric incomes of solos. The profession has been sold short! Surely accounting for solos' incomes would raise the median to $250,000. Maybe even $500,000. Would we expect anything less from the million dollar degree?