Sunday, June 23, 2019

LSTC Sips Fine Napa Cab, Calls Shenanigans on the California February Bar Results, Joins Demand for Another Task Force

Here is a tabulation from this past February's California bar examination results to study for fun and profit:
Total:  43.5%
California ABA Approved:  45.2%
Out of State ABA Approved:  47.5%
California Accredited:  21.2%
California Unaccredited:  25.4%
  • The bar exam sucks.
  • Based on these results, what is the benefit of attending a California law school if it gives you no advantage in passing the California bar examination over an out-of-state school?
  • Based on these results, what is the benefit of attending a California accredited law school if it gives you no advantage in passing the California bar examination over an unaccredited school?
  • All of these applicants passed a rigorous course of study over several years, so WTF kind of a bastard shitbird cousinblowing nutpunching lousy bar testing program fails more than half of them?  Even Clarence Thomas would find that cruel and unusual punishment, and he's gone full heel at this point.
Consider, too, that the Santa Barbara College of Law went 6/11 on first-timers - a better rate than all but 3 of the 12 ABA-accredited schools with sufficient first-timers to report numbers.  Or that unaccredited distance learning schools had a better pass rate (28%) than Chapman (25%) or the surviving remnants of Whittier (25%).

Sorry to repeat myself, but when you're right you're right, and I look fucking amazing today:  the bar exam sucks and these people are spitting out results that simply defy expectations (which, when you're smart enough to run a law school cartel, should match reality).  If students at Santa Barbara - this is not an ABA accredited school, okay!? - are outperforming Loyola (Los Angeles), Southwestern, and McGeorge, that would suggest a major problem in the reality of American legal education in terms of accreditation, admissions, and testing.  It's simply unnatural, an abomination to the Naturale Law and Goode Order. 

I refuse to believe that the space-time continuum is broken; my wine simply tastes too good.  The only possible explanation is that the bar exam sucks.

Thankfully, genius finds genius and I'm not alone in my conclusions.  Here are three of California's top 25 law deans in an opinion piece for
Though California bar takers, on average, perform better than their counterparts elsewhere on the multistate bar exam (MBE), a far greater number fail as a direct consequence of California’s exceptionally high cut score.
The best path forward is for the California Supreme Court to appoint—as soon as is practicable—an independent, blue-ribbon task force to study the cut score issue and make its recommendations within six or nine months. Such a task force should bring together leaders from the bench, bar and law schools to assess the cut score and licensure issues expeditiously, thoughtfully and holistically.
Say it loud, say it proud:  TASK FORCE!

As with every task force in the history of white collar task forces, you don't appoint one unless you know the result of deploying their tactical expertise, so you know any such task force will develop one hell of a white paper advocating that California reduce its cut score and flood the market with even more lawyers to make even more money.

We should just have a standing task force (Task Force One? The X-Persons-of-all-Genders?  The Un-Avengers?) to deal with legal reform proposals, but since we don't, appoint me!  I know the score and I've been doing this shill thing longer than a lot of law deans. 

Too bad the California bar examiners have forgotten the Latin saying embroidered into napkins on the dining car:  Squamous Onus. Be a darned shame if I just spilled some of this fine Cab on their lapels and they had to to reach for one...

Friday, June 14, 2019

Who Needs Accreditation, Anyway?

No one ever had to accredit Thomas Jefferson The Man.  He had swank digs, a good lot of slaves, and a mind for the Enlightenment.

So why break the balls of Thomas Jefferson The School?  Were they not trying the exact same thing as the critics imagine it, repurposed for modern times like when HBO thought Native Son needed a makeover?  A corporation of modest, sustainable annual profits built on unpayable indentures?  A thirst for justice and improvements to democracy?  A postmodern Monticello on the shores of the Pacific?

Yet here we go again.  The ABA's sub-whatever voted to strip accreditation from TJLS.  Blah blah blah.
The American Bar Association’s accrediting arm has decided to pull approval from Thomas Jefferson School of Law for not complying with standards related to financial resources, program rigor and admissions.
Thanks, ABA.  I'm sure the real Thomas Jefferson would give these assholes quite a rigorous admission.  At there's a silver lining:
Thomas Jefferson will keep its accreditation throughout the appeal, which is expected to take from six to nine months.

“The law school is disappointed by this capricious decision and strongly disagrees with the council’s findings,” it said in a statement.
Capricious, indeed.  What kind of a rule-of-law-loving organization so casually disregards established ideas of due process and impartiality and decides so capriciously after several years of investigation to give some poor multimillion dollar paper mill the effective death penalty?  Obviously, the ABA needs more lawyers on its staff trained at places that understand the legacy of Thomas Jefferson.  More from the TJLSs of the world and less from, say, the hoity-toity University of Virginia.

Maybe someday it'll be a fair world where the little guy can get a break and continue mortgaging the future for self-important profits.  Until then, fight the power and scam on.

Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Young Florida Lawyers Display Immense Job Satisfaction, Repying Debt at High Levels

Great news from the ABA Journal!  The Florida Bar did a survey of its younger/less-experienced members and the results are a resounding, unqualified success for Florida, its law schools, and its bar.  Really, it's a win for justice.  Pat yourself on the back, big guy, and know the line to suck your even-keeled balls is long but well worth it.

Most often, we use words to describe the brilliant grace of the law.  This preference arises from the fact that we, generally, are wordsmithy lawyers, trained in legalese and office persiflage but utterly lost when numbers show up, save, of course, when the checks come (and they do!).  But loving the law can be expressed quantitatively as well, and buddy, it's rainin' good stuff:
  • 60+% of young lawyers are satisfied with their professional lives and over 50% would run to sign up for law school again
  • 41% have found so much success in the law that they have dreamed of transitioning to other fields, presumably like teaching, writing, or being CEOs of multinational corporations
  • 79% are working less than 60 hours a week, providing an excellent work-life balance
  • 43% report feeling no anxiety or depression at all in the practice of law
  • in an especially highlighted positive finding, "66% said they enjoy performing the day-to-day work of the job."
The Million Dollar Express: who said it's hard to perpetually orgasm and drive a train at the same time?  Not this one-man think-tank, and if anyone has, I'd like to see the paper on SSRN.

The biggest victory is in the student loan debt department. Behold the glory: "The median outstanding student loan amount was $150,000."

How many times have you heard that common student debts from "unnecessary and predatory" fourth-tier "shit-holes" like Barry, Coastal, or Ave Maria run 200k, 300k, etc.?  Well, if we accept that libel as true for the sake of argument, these lean, mean, lawyering machines are rapidly paying down their debts, no?  Is that not basic math?

$150k for an early career practitioner is nothing.  Just 15 years of $10k in payments (plus a teaspoon of interest and a fee here or there).  These badasses can live large in Destin or Naples and should have no issue paying down their debts.  I don't even know why we have IBR much less Liz Warren.

It's obvious that sunshine is the best disinfectant when the Sunshine State has, apparently, been scrubbed clean of the "it's a scam!" virus. 

I mean, it is, but shit...

Scam on.