Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Trump Bad. More Lawyers Good.

The non-sequitur.  A classic of absurdist humor utilized by Carroll, Beckett, and everyone in between.  After all, when a bulldozer runs over an alto-soprano mongoose, it sings a bit flat.

But did you know the non-sequitur is also a logical fallacy?  It's true, readers.  Sometimes, sophists establish premises and then draw conclusions that in no rational way follow the presented factual scenario.  Taken seriously, it's not quite as funny as  Monty Python sketch, unless it's taken really seriously. 

Thankfully, the non-sequitur has no application to this article here, which argues that Donald Trump's nascent presidency has made law school "cool" again.  (Does it really lose "cool" status by having a more exclusive appeal?)
Even if law school remains a difficult and potentially costly path, the importance of good lawyers is becoming increasingly clear. “This new administration is challenging some things that we’ve taken to date as long-standing legal truths, ranging from civil rights and civil liberties to administrative regulations,” says Adrienne Davis, a law professor and the vice provost at Washington University. “So yes, we need more lawyers.”
Notice how it follows logically that because we have an administration "challenging some things" that we need more lawyers?  Because - and this is totally implied unless you can decipher the subtext like perspicacious moi* - we developed our present equilibrium of lawyers (where demand equals supply) under the Obama administration.  With an articulate Constitutional scholar at its helm, our prior presidency simply wasn't going to challenge basic tenets of the Rule of Law.  Now that we have a genuine challenger, well, Adrienne, it's time to recruit some more legal Rocky Balboas to put on the gloves.

Much of the article is a masturbatory piece for social justice lawyers (which, remember, is all of us!  we all ride the Million Dollar Express!) and how, you know, you should totally go to a school that has a high return on investment (all of them!).  And of course, there's an "unmet legal needs" claim slipped in the side door like a flood of Honduran migrant farm workers who, swear to God, have all been living in Albuquerque with their families for generations on my very large, labor-intensive farm...

The novelty of the article remains its drawing the astute observation that a Trump White House creates a commensurate need to print more and more law licenses until the cost of legal services hits zero.  One day it's going to happen, by God, and you fat cats and your $140/hr monopolistic rates will feel the wrath of bottom-barrel competition.

You can't make this shit up.  It might even be impervious to parody.  Poe's Law.
But one of [Trump's] accidental accomplishments may be to make lawyering great again.
A slight demurer: it's always been great.

*Perspicacious Moi is the name under which I plan on releasing future solo hip-hop efforts.  Copy it and I will hire one of the impending gazillions of new lawyers to sue sue sue.


  1. The author's CV is online; she describes herself as "a novelist, journalist, and freelance academic living in Chapel Hill, N.C." She also has a JD from UNC, was a law clerk for a US District Court judge, taught at Elon LS, has published books on legal writing, etc.
    But it appears that she's moved past her lawyer days...until now. No doubt she'll be at the forefront of the new lawyering-it is cool, after all.

  2. Captain Hruska Carswell, Continuance KingFebruary 28, 2017 at 2:25 PM

    You can earn some money as a lawyer "doing" social justice. Its called criminal defense and up holding the Constitution or invoking it for ordinary citizens on their behalf. However, there are many obstacles. You have to put up with folks asking why you don't charge $49.00 like those Traffic Ticket billboard lawyers and understand that it is no longer a sustainable path to a middle class career. Think of it as a part-time gig... Go in with your eyes WIDE open.

  3. You should make it "perspicacious moi", in lower case. And throw in two more names.

  4. The new "selling point." Sadly, some cretins and waterheads will be swayed by this filth. Well, prepare to saddle up $200K for a TTT law degree, geniuses. The main difference you'll be making is switching from two-ply to single-ply toilet paper - and eating non-name brand bread.

    1. I myself tend to think that anyone who would buy into this would have gone to law school in any event.

  5. The flip side of this, of course, is that Mr. Trump is promising to dismantle the regulatory state. Fewer regulations means fewer jobs for lawyers and fewer jobs for J.D.-advantage compliance officers.

    When Jimmy Carter deregulated the trucking industry (for which everyone gave Ronald Reagan credit, but that's life) there was a big firm, I think in Indianapolis, that did nothing but trucking regulatory compliance. It basically ceased to exist, almost overnight.

    So be warned, ye lemmings, that every attorney whose regulatory compliance job ceases to exist will be competing with you for this new, Trump-generated work which is of highly questionable existence and, should it exist, will mostly involve the fine art of making a living doing legal work for people who cannot pay your bills.