Thursday, November 22, 2018

This Thanksgiving, Toss Some Buzzwords Into Your Potatoes!

Perhaps more than any other holiday, Thanksgiving creates a golden opportunity for benign-appearing law school recruitment.  Other relatives think it's a good time to casually snipe at Donald Trump or Nancy Pelosi. Reject that superficial nonsense and play 5-D chess by conning the next generation while smirking and throwing a whipped cream-shot on that hot warm pumpkin pie.


Here, for example, are just some classics for those ripe relatives.  Bonus points if you rope someone's tag-along significant other into applying and then they break up, and double bonus points if you work in a tasteless reference to current events (e.g., Pepperdine being a hot choice).
  • "The LSAT is way easier than the MCAT or GRE.  It's not even curved or anything, and law schools are now taking people who score like a 150."
  • "The time to buy is when other people are selling, and people have been selling law school for years."
  • "My friend is in Brooklyn and can't find a lawyer to take a definitely good and viable case.  Brooklyn!" 
  • "I saw on the news the other day, you won't believe this, but apparently so many law schools have closed that the lawyer shortage is expected to increase dramatically in the next few years."
  • "Rural places are so desperate for lawyers that they're actually paying people to practice law there now!"
  •  "The only good thing about all that regulation that Bay-rack O'bummer put in is that there's got to be a demand for all sorts of lawyers now gettin' rich off it."
  • "My lawyer friend just bought a 7500 square foot house."
  • "My lawyer friend just bought a Porsche."
  • "My lawyer friend's kids won't speak to him because he's banging his smokeshow secretary."
  • "My lawyer friend says it's exactly like Law & Order."
 But if you really want some inspiration for your script, check out this hooker thong of an article and get drunk on self-righteous buzzwordin':
  • "Law is entering the age of the consumer and bidding adieu to the guild that enshrined lawyers and the myth of legal exceptionalism."
  • "Law is no longer solely about lawyers; law firms are not  the default provider of legal services; legal practice is no longer synonymous with legal delivery; the legal buy/sell balance of power has shifted from lawyers to legal buyers; lawyers do not  control both sides of legal buy/sell; and the function and role of most lawyers is changing as digital transformation has made legal consumers—not lawyers—the arbiters of value."
  • ""Knowing the law” is now a baseline that must be augmented by new skills that are seldom taught by law schools—data analytics, business basics, project management, risk management, and "people skills" to cite a few."
  •  "There is enormous opportunity to train students to better serve law’s “retail” segment. Tens of millions of new legal consumers would enter the market if there were more new, efficient delivery models that better leverage lawyer time utilizing technology, process, data, metrics, and a client-centric business structure."
It's like when you find a politician who agrees with you on a pet issue and then he keeps going and you try to get out of the room but some jackass has barricaded doors and you've found your own private hell.

In other words, it's perfect for law school persuasion.  Remember: these kids haven't gone through the process yet.  They still believe in fairness and that money-making systems can change because they morally should.  Dumb Millennials.

And what's really great about this multi-sided naivete is that the law school industrial complex can milk the fuck out of this fat cow. New faculty specialists in legal technology.  Hybrid, Frankenstein-spawned law/business management degrees.  Certificate programs in SQL and the Law.

But of course, nothing is more crucial to this "new" lawyering than experiential learning.  And what better way is there to learn the methods of venture capitalism than torching three years of time and a stack of cash on a risky venture?  Which brings me to my final selling point at the o' holiday table:
  • "And if it doesn't work out, it's not like Chapter 13 is the end of the world."

Thursday, November 8, 2018

Why Aren't Texas Southern Students Passing the Bar?

Why Aren't Texas Southern Students Passing the Bar?  It's such a mystery.  Better get one of those blue ribbon investigations!
Only 44.52 percent of Thurgood Marshall students who took that exam for the first time passed it—a rate that was by far the lowest among Texas’ 10 law schools and much lower than the pass rate that comparable groups of Thurgood Marshall students obtained in recent years.
[T]he law school has launched an investigation to figure out why the pass rate was so low.
It is too early to speculate why the pass rate was lower than normal, he said, but he is concerned that current students may transfer to other schools after seeing the low pass rate for the most recent bar exam. [The Superdean] said other schools do reach in and “poach” the school’s best students, despite Thurgood Marshall’s desire to keep them.
And he should be.  Normally, the healthy reaction to "poaching" is simply to admit more students.  Unfortunately, the bar examiners have to cooperate by not making the examination too tough for the lowest rung of would-be lawyers to pass.  When the bar examiners are unduly harsh on tomorrow's white shoe tap-dancers, it makes it incredibly difficult for schools like Thurgood Marshall to profit as much as their namesakes would want.  What are they supposed to do, hire ringers or else go the way of Valpo?

But, hey, let's have us an investigation as to why one of the worst(-rated!) law schools in Texas can't cut it anymore on some elitist, unwinnable contest because some grand poobahs in Austin think you need a fucking Fields Medal to make millions divorcing unhappy trailer park denizens.

I mean, for fuck's sake, the school's incoming median LSAT is 143 with a median GPA of 3.02 - and we're talking about astrophysicists at Cal Tech.  What the hell do you expect?  You're going to investigate that, really?  This is like the New York Times food critic suddenly running Rizzo's Pubic Hair Sub Shop and calling for an investigation as to why the ham doesn't quite taste like the prime jamon iberico that law deans nibble off the nude bodies of "performance artists."

"It's too early to speculate..."  Okay, Deano... let's do a full investigation.  Put together a panel.  Get Deborah Merritt involved.  Put Seth Abramson on the case.  Start issuing subpoenas.  Hold some hearings.  Consult the experts.  Write an 85-page white paper with citations aplenty. 

Doesn't change the fact that the bar needs to accommodate the school's disability of not being to find better applicants.  If that's not an ADA violation, it damn well should be, and we need tons and tons of lawyers, especially the dumb ones, to prove it.