Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

(On Campus Interviews, Summer Associate positions, Firm Reviews, Tips, ...)
Forum rules
Anonymous Posting

Anonymous posting is only appropriate when you are revealing sensitive employment related information about a firm, job, etc. You may anonymously respond on topic to these threads. Unacceptable uses include: harassing another user, joking around, testing the feature, or other things that are more appropriate in the lounge.

Failure to follow these rules will get you outed, warned, or banned.
User avatar
JCougar
Posts: 3175
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 8:47 pm

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby JCougar » Thu Jul 21, 2011 11:39 pm

It's hard to read this thread and not think the legal industry is in major trouble. areyouinsane isn't just some bloke that couldn't hack it...the statistics back that up. There's at least 20,000 law graduates each year that are either relegated to part-time or temp jobs. Most of them are probably to ashamed or self-conscious to come out and be loud about their fate. They probably blame themselves and feel like a loser for what happened to them.

But when did it become okay in this country for education to be a life or death financial gamble? That's basically what law school is if you pay sticker. The T14 used to be a safe bet. Now it's only a decent bet, but you're not safe by all means.

20,000 law grads a year can't find full-time work. Perhaps only half of them paid sticker or close to it. Still, that's 10,000 young adults a year ruined by the law school soul grinder. The more this fiasco gets exposed, the more comfortable these people will be coming out and speaking. Half of the graduates at T1 schools these days are mostly screwed. There's people at my school that are completely boned. People from the bottom third at GULC can't find work. Some people from the T10 can't find work, or even some of the ones that got good grades got no-offered or laid off.

All of this would be fine, and was fine, when law school debt didn't cripple you for life. Young adults always have to suffer through a hard job market and periods of unemployment. It goes with being young and not having much, if any, real work experience. But they've never had to endure it with such life-crushing debt. 10,000 new graduates each year that will probably never be able to own a home for as long as they live.

d34d9823
Posts: 1915
Joined: Wed Apr 14, 2010 2:52 pm

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby d34d9823 » Thu Jul 21, 2011 11:42 pm

JCougar wrote:All of this would be fine, and was fine, when law school debt didn't cripple you for life. Young adults always have to suffer through a hard job market and periods of unemployment. It goes with being young and not having much, if any, real work experience. But they've never had to endure it with such life-crushing debt. 10,000 new graduates each year that will probably never be able to own a home for as long as they live.

They don't. There are plenty of perfectly good careers that don't require going into debt. People are rolling the dice out of choice, not because there are no other options.

User avatar
JCougar
Posts: 3175
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 8:47 pm

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby JCougar » Thu Jul 21, 2011 11:46 pm

d34dluk3 wrote:
JCougar wrote:All of this would be fine, and was fine, when law school debt didn't cripple you for life. Young adults always have to suffer through a hard job market and periods of unemployment. It goes with being young and not having much, if any, real work experience. But they've never had to endure it with such life-crushing debt. 10,000 new graduates each year that will probably never be able to own a home for as long as they live.

They don't. There are plenty of perfectly good careers that don't require going into debt. People are rolling the dice out of choice, not because there are no other options.


But people don't know what their outcome is going to be until after they've gone and incurred the debt. So once they've incurred it, they have no choice but to endure it.

Since when should graduate school be like a trip to the casino where you're betting your house?

d34d9823
Posts: 1915
Joined: Wed Apr 14, 2010 2:52 pm

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby d34d9823 » Thu Jul 21, 2011 11:59 pm

JCougar wrote:Since when should graduate school be like a trip to the casino where you're betting your house?

Out of all the injustices you could complain about, the fact that a voluntary career choice carries a high amount of risk seems like a strange one to choose.

User avatar
JCougar
Posts: 3175
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 8:47 pm

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby JCougar » Fri Jul 22, 2011 12:05 am

d34dluk3 wrote:
JCougar wrote:Since when should graduate school be like a trip to the casino where you're betting your house?

Out of all the injustices you could complain about, the fact that a voluntary career choice carries a high amount of risk seems like a strange one to choose.


I actually think it's kind of weird that you think a career choice should be an enormous financial gamble. Starting your own business is a risk. School shouldn't be. Graduate school is not a risk that will sink your financial future in any other country right now. Nor has it been at any other time in this country. Making graduate school into Russian roulette is a brand new phenomenon, and I think it's a stupid one. The ABA should be ashamed of itself.

User avatar
drdolittle
Posts: 628
Joined: Tue Mar 09, 2010 4:15 am

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby drdolittle » Fri Jul 22, 2011 5:28 am

d34dluk3 wrote:
JCougar wrote:Since when should graduate school be like a trip to the casino where you're betting your house?

Out of all the injustices you could complain about, the fact that a voluntary career choice carries a high amount of risk seems like a strange one to choose.

Perhaps you're on the wrong site & thread? This one's broadly about the current state of legal education, not about "all the injustices." For that you're gonna have to look for a site on all the voluntary & involuntary injustices of the world, just Google it, I'm sure it exists on the internets...:twisted:

Btw, voluntary choices that reasonably carry a high degree of risk are things like motorcycle riding & bungee jumping, not education. To propose otherwise is utterly insane in the vein of areyouinsane. Maybe it's the new reality for now (for non truly top law school grads anyway), but it's wrong and I don't think it can or should remain the "model" in future years.

luthersloan
Posts: 342
Joined: Thu May 27, 2010 6:43 pm

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby luthersloan » Fri Jul 22, 2011 10:23 am

I do not think it is "wrong" that higher education be such a high stakes gamble. The only way it could be otherwise (at least so long as remains very expensive) it to shift the risk from the person undertaking the schooling, to some one else. The only real problem is that it is highly subsidized gamble, and one which people seem to be poorly informed about.

areyouinsane
Posts: 208
Joined: Tue Jun 14, 2011 3:22 pm

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby areyouinsane » Fri Jul 22, 2011 10:27 am

Law school is a enormous risk for anyone taking out substantial loans to pursue a JD. That is widely acknowledged all over the Internet.

Yet lawschool differs from other forms of education in that the schools publish patently false salary and employment data, and suppress/hide any and all NEGATIVE data (like the % of grads employed in temp jobs/part time work).

Most things in life which carry a high degree of potentially life-destroying risk are required by the government to at the very least disclose said risk, or require steps to mitigate it (i.e, seat belt laws, motorcycle helmet laws, fences around in-ground swimming pools, etc).

And in the case of highly dangerous items (cigarettes, for example), laws require an actual WARNING appear on the package and in advertisements. Have you guys heard about the new cig. warning labels coming out next year? They're gonna take up 1/2 the front of the pack and have photos of cancerous lungs, trachaetomy holes, tar-coated bronchial tubes, etc.

I propose that law schools have a similar warning: 1/2 the text area of all admissions materals should have a photo of the SullCrom basement with elbow-to-elbow coders sitting on garbage-dumpster furniture with rotten Chinese food containers and trash all over the floor. Or a photo of the "courtrooms" in King's Civil with the shitlawyers screaming at each other while the clerk hammers a broken stapler inside a metal trash can to shut them up.

BTW nice article this morning on the "college bubble":

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articl ... 10649.html

No way can the current system survive another 10 years (and probably not another 5). Unemployment among recent college grads is at an all-time high, and of those who are "employed" many are not using their degrees and are working retail or foodservice, Starbucks, etc.

User avatar
Paraflam
Posts: 472
Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2009 3:09 pm

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby Paraflam » Fri Jul 22, 2011 10:32 am

areyouinsane wrote:I propose that law schools have a similar warning: 1/2 the text area of all admissions materals should have a photo of the SullCrom basement with elbow-to-elbow coders sitting on garbage-dumpster furniture with rotten Chinese food containers and trash all over the floor. Or a photo of the "courtrooms" in King's Civil with the shitlawyers screaming at each other while the clerk hammers a broken stapler inside a metal trash can to shut them up.

LOL

User avatar
Rooney
Posts: 1179
Joined: Thu Feb 03, 2011 3:43 pm

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby Rooney » Fri Jul 22, 2011 10:35 am

Just made me think of Cuba: free education up to and including PhD level

luthersloan
Posts: 342
Joined: Thu May 27, 2010 6:43 pm

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby luthersloan » Fri Jul 22, 2011 10:45 am

Rooney wrote:Just made me think of Cuba: free education up to and including PhD level


Then instead of 1 million JD holders we would have 30 million. Somehow I doubt that would make the employment situation any better for lawyers.

User avatar
robotclubmember
Posts: 743
Joined: Wed Sep 15, 2010 7:53 am

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby robotclubmember » Fri Jul 22, 2011 11:17 am

d34dluk3 wrote:
JCougar wrote:Since when should graduate school be like a trip to the casino where you're betting your house?

Out of all the injustices you could complain about, the fact that a voluntary career choice carries a high amount of risk seems like a strange one to choose.


Is this choice truly "voluntary" if the participant has been enticed into an economic transaction on the basis of grossly misleading data?

The fundamental principle of economics is that people are rational actors. What rational actor would NOT go to a TTT if they were assured by the school itself that they would be greeted with 98% employment at a median salary of $160K. 98% chance of being employed with at least half of those people making $160K or more doesn't seem like a "high risk." That seems like a very intelligent decision that a rational person would make. Fortunately, there is the internet. But people shouldn't be expected to cross-examine the veracity of an institute of legal education, only to find its borderline fraudulent in its misrepresentations.

i am aware that i sound like a broken record but the market is being gamed by law schools who try to lull you into a false sense that this is a low-risk proposition. I would say the decision to go would be "voluntary" if an individual who knew the true employment prospects of a school still decided to attend. that's true for some, not for all. if a person would not have attended law school had the law school not furnished fraudulent data (ten years ago before TLS there was no way to cross-examine self-reported data), then i would argue the decision was not truly "voluntary." many simply don't know the risk a legal education entails.

User avatar
vanwinkle
Posts: 9740
Joined: Sun Dec 21, 2008 3:02 am

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby vanwinkle » Fri Jul 22, 2011 11:22 am

robotclubmember wrote:
d34dluk3 wrote:
JCougar wrote:Since when should graduate school be like a trip to the casino where you're betting your house?

Out of all the injustices you could complain about, the fact that a voluntary career choice carries a high amount of risk seems like a strange one to choose.

Is this choice truly "voluntary" if the participant has been enticed into an economic transaction on the basis of grossly misleading data?

The arguments I've been seeing in this thread are that 1) the economic picture for JD grads is much more negative than schools lead them to believe and that 2) the publicly available evidence of this is so overwhelming that people can't deny its truth. Given that the information is clearly out there for anyone willing to look, how is it anything other than "voluntary" for a person to choose to go?

I'm not saying that this absolves the schools in any way, but it's not like all the people choosing to go deep into debt for nearly worthless law degrees are innocent sheep with guns to their heads.

User avatar
Verity
Posts: 1253
Joined: Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:26 pm

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby Verity » Fri Jul 22, 2011 11:30 am

It is voluntary.

The ABA should be doing something to help shrink supply like some other professional organizations do. They should be in bed with the profession, not the schools.

luthersloan
Posts: 342
Joined: Thu May 27, 2010 6:43 pm

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby luthersloan » Fri Jul 22, 2011 11:36 am

Verity wrote:It is voluntary.

The ABA should be doing something to help shrink supply like some other professional organizations do. They should be in bed with the profession, not the schools.


I disagree. The ABA should not try to reduce the number of lawyers, all that would do is drive up the price of legal services above the market rate, unless the ABA could perfectly counterbalance the subsidy provided by student loans. I do not think we should try to form a cartel that controls the supply of legal services merely to increase are our compensation, it was wrong when the sugar trusts did it, and it is wrong that some professional organzitions do it today. I am glad the ABA does not try to control supply.

User avatar
robotclubmember
Posts: 743
Joined: Wed Sep 15, 2010 7:53 am

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby robotclubmember » Fri Jul 22, 2011 11:53 am

vanwinkle wrote:
robotclubmember wrote:
d34dluk3 wrote:
JCougar wrote:Since when should graduate school be like a trip to the casino where you're betting your house?

Out of all the injustices you could complain about, the fact that a voluntary career choice carries a high amount of risk seems like a strange one to choose.

Is this choice truly "voluntary" if the participant has been enticed into an economic transaction on the basis of grossly misleading data?

The arguments I've been seeing in this thread are that 1) the economic picture for JD grads is much more negative than schools lead them to believe and that 2) the publicly available evidence of this is so overwhelming that people can't deny its truth. Given that the information is clearly out there for anyone willing to look, how is it anything other than "voluntary" for a person to choose to go?

I'm not saying that this absolves the schools in any way, but it's not like all the people choosing to go deep into debt for nearly worthless law degrees are innocent sheep with guns to their heads.


not everyone uses TLS. and the negative mainstream press has only started piling up as recently as Jan 2011, besides which, most people are not avid readers of the NYT and WSJ so that falls off their radar.

i certainly agree that when people are investing up to six digits, due diligence is warranted. but personally, i never questioned the employment data reported by the schools. i came on TLS because initially for LSAT advice. i found out that the employment data at most schools was largely fabricated quickly, but only as a by-product of other inquests into the admissions process. and maybe too late. with the information i have now that i didn't a year ago, i honestly would have made a different decision on law school.

it would take an unreasonable amount of effort to the average person to collect enough data to have the full picture a school should have given them up front. and for many, the ramblings on an internet forum don't supersede the authority of the school's published statistics. the authority of law schools tends to carry far more weight, in terms of their credibility, than they should.

edit - by average person, i mean average person. no one is worried about protecting the guy with a 174 on the lsat from his own stupidity. but what about people who truly are average? they never had the ability to be a lawyer in the first place so why should we assume they would have the ability to intelligently question the law school's statistics? it does require a baseline level of intelligence to be asking the right questions. the people who lack that are the people who need the fair disclosure frow law schools up front the most, not you. until that disclosure comes from the school, we will never see an end to the oversupply.

User avatar
vanwinkle
Posts: 9740
Joined: Sun Dec 21, 2008 3:02 am

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby vanwinkle » Fri Jul 22, 2011 11:59 am

robotclubmember wrote:with the information i have now that i didn't a year ago, i honestly would have made a different decision on law school.

So you're a current law student who regrets going? That repeats itself ad nauseaum, though, even among people who already knew the risks beforehand. They were informed, they had all the data, but they still assumed that they had something unique or special that other people didn't that would make them more likely to succeed than the statistics indicated. It's only after they discover the statistics applied to them too that they start spouting off about how people should heed warnings. So, I'm not sure I believe you would've made a different decision a year ago. You might have just been one of those people who goes, "Well, yeah, a lot of people shouldn't go to law school right now, but I'm more {dedicated/hard-working/interested in actually practicing law}..."

User avatar
ndirish2010
Posts: 2950
Joined: Mon Dec 14, 2009 4:41 pm

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby ndirish2010 » Fri Jul 22, 2011 12:01 pm

vanwinkle wrote:
robotclubmember wrote:with the information i have now that i didn't a year ago, i honestly would have made a different decision on law school.

So you're a current law student who regrets going? That repeats itself ad nauseaum, though, even among people who already knew the risks beforehand. They were informed, they had all the data, but they still assumed that they had something unique or special that other people didn't that would make them more likely to succeed than the statistics indicated. It's only after they discover the statistics applied to them too that they start spouting off about how people should heed warnings. So, I'm not sure I believe you would've made a different decision a year ago. You might have just been one of those people who goes, "Well, yeah, a lot of people shouldn't go to law school right now, but I'm more {dedicated/hard-working/interested in actually practicing law}..."


His profile says NU 2014, so I don't think he's currently enrolled.

User avatar
vanwinkle
Posts: 9740
Joined: Sun Dec 21, 2008 3:02 am

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby vanwinkle » Fri Jul 22, 2011 12:02 pm

robotclubmember wrote:edit - by average person, i mean average person. no one is worried about protecting the guy with a 174 on the lsat from his own stupidity. but what about people who truly are average? they never had the ability to be a lawyer in the first place so why should we assume they would have the ability to intelligently question the law school's statistics? it does require a baseline level of intelligence to be asking the right questions. the people who lack that are the people who need the fair disclosure frow law schools up front the most, not you. until that disclosure comes from the school, we will never see an end to the oversupply.

Just saw this, and it's exactly what I was just referring to above. People assume they're "special" or "above average" because of a high LSAT score or some other thing they assign lots of meaning to. A high LSAT score doesn't mean you have "the ability to be a lawyer" more than everyone else. It does mean that you get placed into a pool of people who are in the aggregate more likely to have the necessary ability, but even then there are some people who just can't cut it anyway. They end up getting poor grades, or blowing their OCI interviews, or hating the work and burning out quickly. It happens, more frequently than you seem to think.

You should be worried about the stupidity of a guy with a 174 LSAT, if he thinks that score means he doesn't have anything to worry about.

User avatar
Verity
Posts: 1253
Joined: Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:26 pm

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby Verity » Fri Jul 22, 2011 12:17 pm

luthersloan wrote:
Verity wrote:It is voluntary.

The ABA should be doing something to help shrink supply like some other professional organizations do. They should be in bed with the profession, not the schools.


I disagree. The ABA should not try to reduce the number of lawyers, all that would do is drive up the price of legal services above the market rate, unless the ABA could perfectly counterbalance the subsidy provided by student loans. I do not think we should try to form a cartel that controls the supply of legal services merely to increase are our compensation, it was wrong when the sugar trusts did it, and it is wrong that some professional organzitions do it today. I am glad the ABA does not try to control supply.


Prices would rise above market rate in the event of a shortage. Trying to shrink the HUGE oversupply of students we currently have would not IMO have the kind of effect you're describing, at least for a long time. The AMA and ADA both implement similar measures. I'm not suggesting the ABA try to impose a cap on the number of students each year; but if they would force schools to be more forthright about numbers, and find some other ways to show the public a sober view of the market, then that just might deter some people from going to law school.

Seriously, I know lots of 0Ls who would be shocked to hear that ANY lawyer would make less than a teacher's salary. They probably wouldn't believe it, or would assume that such a person has some kind of a problem.

And sugar trusts? Give me a break. Incomparable.

luthersloan
Posts: 342
Joined: Thu May 27, 2010 6:43 pm

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby luthersloan » Fri Jul 22, 2011 12:26 pm

Verity wrote:
luthersloan wrote:
Verity wrote:It is voluntary.

The ABA should be doing something to help shrink supply like some other professional organizations do. They should be in bed with the profession, not the schools.


I disagree. The ABA should not try to reduce the number of lawyers, all that would do is drive up the price of legal services above the market rate, unless the ABA could perfectly counterbalance the subsidy provided by student loans. I do not think we should try to form a cartel that controls the supply of legal services merely to increase are our compensation, it was wrong when the sugar trusts did it, and it is wrong that some professional organzitions do it today. I am glad the ABA does not try to control supply.


Prices would rise above market rate in the event of a shortage. Trying to shrink the HUGE oversupply of students we currently have would not IMO have the kind of effect you're describing, at least for a long time. The AMA and ADA both implement similar measures. I'm not suggesting the ABA try to impose a cap on the number of students each year; but if they would force schools to be more forthright about numbers, and find some other ways to show the public a sober view of the market, then that just might deter some people from going to law school.

Seriously, I know lots of 0Ls who would be shocked to hear that ANY lawyer would make less than a teacher's salary. They probably wouldn't believe it, or would assume that such a person has some kind of a problem.

And sugar trusts? Give me a break. Incomparable.



I certainly agree there should be more disclosure, though I actually doubt that would correct the problem, given the massive subsidy in the form of student loans. As long as the large subsidy remains, any reform will amount to little more then rearranging deck chairs on the titanic. As far as the oversupply problem, I am not sure how much limitation on production would be necessary to eliminate it, given how dynamic both supply and demand are. I do not however think it is wise to use other professional organization as a bench mark, since their goal after all is to cartelize their respective industries, something the ABA once did. The only relevant distinction between the AMA and a sugar trust is the sugar trusts were better at extracting monopoly profits.

User avatar
Verity
Posts: 1253
Joined: Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:26 pm

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby Verity » Fri Jul 22, 2011 12:37 pm

luthersloan wrote:I certainly agree there should be more disclosure, though I actually doubt that would correct the problem, given the massive subsidy in the form of student loans. As long as the large subsidy remains, any reform will amount to little more then rearranging deck chairs on the titanic. As far as the oversupply problem, I am not sure how much limitation on production would be necessary to eliminate it, given how dynamic both supply and demand are. I do not however think it is wise to use other professional organization as a bench mark, since their goal after all is to cartelize their respective industries, something the ABA once did. The only relevant distinction between the AMA and a sugar trust is the sugar trusts were better at extracting monopoly profits.


That's the only distinction? American Sugar Refining Company was an actual company that had a monopoly. The ABA is a professional organization that produces nothing and sets no prices. Them going to bat for prospective and current law students, and lawyers, by trying to end the delusions most people have about the legal profession....you can't compare the two.

By the way, demand is not nearly so dynamic in this case to virtually negate any real drop in supply. Unless IBM creates a Watson, Esq. for commercial use, steadily cutting supply should have a very positive effect for lawyers in the next decade or two.

luthersloan
Posts: 342
Joined: Thu May 27, 2010 6:43 pm

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby luthersloan » Fri Jul 22, 2011 12:47 pm

Verity wrote:
luthersloan wrote:I certainly agree there should be more disclosure, though I actually doubt that would correct the problem, given the massive subsidy in the form of student loans. As long as the large subsidy remains, any reform will amount to little more then rearranging deck chairs on the titanic. As far as the oversupply problem, I am not sure how much limitation on production would be necessary to eliminate it, given how dynamic both supply and demand are. I do not however think it is wise to use other professional organization as a bench mark, since their goal after all is to cartelize their respective industries, something the ABA once did. The only relevant distinction between the AMA and a sugar trust is the sugar trusts were better at extracting monopoly profits.


That's the only distinction? American Sugar Refining Company was an actual company that had a monopoly. The ABA is a professional organization that produces nothing and sets no prices. Them going to bat for prospective and current law students, and lawyers, by trying to end the delusions most people have about the legal profession....you can't compare the two.

By the way, demand is not nearly so dynamic in this case to virtually negate any real drop in supply. Unless IBM creates a Watson, Esq. for commercial use, steadily cutting supply should have a very positive effect for lawyers in the next decade or two.



First, I said the AMA, since the ABA is not an effective cartel. Second, I said only relevant difference. I fail to see how being an actual producer of a good over which on hold a monopoly or participates in a cartel that controls production of the same is different from the organization that controls prices via restriction of supply. But, that is entirely tangential since the ABA is not an effective cartel, and mere reporting requirements would not make it on. Though, the ABA should not be assigned the responsibility of enforcing said requirements since it will be captured by one of the two competing interest groups that comprise its membership, the law schools and legal faculty (who have in fact captured it, leading to no/minimal regulation requiring disclosure) or capture by practicing lawyers (who would want to make the compliance costs as high as possible so as to reduce supply and increase their own wages).

Lastly, cutting supply would have of course be good for lawyers who remain in the system, but that is almost always going to be true weather there is a surplus or a shortage, the question is will a reduction in the number of lawyers increase aggregate social welfare. At this level of supply, almost certainly yes, but it is unclear at what point you would start creating an artificial shortage via regulation that would reduce social welfare.

User avatar
Verity
Posts: 1253
Joined: Sun Jan 30, 2011 11:26 pm

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby Verity » Fri Jul 22, 2011 12:58 pm

luthersloan wrote:
Verity wrote:
luthersloan wrote:I certainly agree there should be more disclosure, though I actually doubt that would correct the problem, given the massive subsidy in the form of student loans. As long as the large subsidy remains, any reform will amount to little more then rearranging deck chairs on the titanic. As far as the oversupply problem, I am not sure how much limitation on production would be necessary to eliminate it, given how dynamic both supply and demand are. I do not however think it is wise to use other professional organization as a bench mark, since their goal after all is to cartelize their respective industries, something the ABA once did. The only relevant distinction between the AMA and a sugar trust is the sugar trusts were better at extracting monopoly profits.


That's the only distinction? American Sugar Refining Company was an actual company that had a monopoly. The ABA is a professional organization that produces nothing and sets no prices. Them going to bat for prospective and current law students, and lawyers, by trying to end the delusions most people have about the legal profession....you can't compare the two.

By the way, demand is not nearly so dynamic in this case to virtually negate any real drop in supply. Unless IBM creates a Watson, Esq. for commercial use, steadily cutting supply should have a very positive effect for lawyers in the next decade or two.



First, I said the AMA, since the ABA is not an effective cartel. Second, I said only relevant difference. I fail to see how being an actual producer of a good over which on hold a monopoly or participates in a cartel that controls production of the same is different from the organization that controls prices via restriction of supply. But, that is entirely tangential since the ABA is not an effective cartel, and mere reporting requirements would not make it on. Though, the ABA should not be assigned the responsibility of enforcing said requirements since it will be captured by one of the two competing interest groups that comprise its membership, the law schools and legal faculty (who have in fact captured it, leading to no/minimal regulation requiring disclosure) or capture by practicing lawyers (who would want to make the compliance costs as high as possible so as to reduce supply and increase their own wages).

Lastly, cutting supply would have of course be good for lawyers who remain in the system, but that is almost always going to be true weather there is a surplus or a shortage, the question is will a reduction in the number of lawyers increase aggregate social welfare. At this level of supply, almost certainly yes, but it is unclear at what point you would start creating an artificial shortage via regulation that would reduce social welfare.


Okay, I'm talking turkey and you're talking theory. Fuck social welfare, and fuck the schools and legal faculty. Seriously. They want to win out at our expense, let them go to bat for themselves. Let's not make their case for them: it's like making excuses for an uncle that sexually abuses you.

User avatar
JCougar
Posts: 3175
Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2008 8:47 pm

Re: Where do contract / temp attorneys come from?

Postby JCougar » Fri Jul 22, 2011 1:02 pm

vanwinkle wrote:
robotclubmember wrote:
d34dluk3 wrote:
JCougar wrote:Since when should graduate school be like a trip to the casino where you're betting your house?

Out of all the injustices you could complain about, the fact that a voluntary career choice carries a high amount of risk seems like a strange one to choose.

Is this choice truly "voluntary" if the participant has been enticed into an economic transaction on the basis of grossly misleading data?

The arguments I've been seeing in this thread are that 1) the economic picture for JD grads is much more negative than schools lead them to believe and that 2) the publicly available evidence of this is so overwhelming that people can't deny its truth. Given that the information is clearly out there for anyone willing to look, how is it anything other than "voluntary" for a person to choose to go?

I'm not saying that this absolves the schools in any way, but it's not like all the people choosing to go deep into debt for nearly worthless law degrees are innocent sheep with guns to their heads.


I know you mentioned not absolving the law schools, and I think it's important that consumers/students not be let entirely off the hook, but I think a lot of people on this forum and elsewhere in the profession (not talking about your post here) take the easy way out and blame the victim.

If a consumer decides to believe what a reputable university is telling him about job prospects after graduation, I don't think that's entirely irresponsible. I don't think it's that "stupid" for someone to trust what they are saying. I don't think these people deserve to be scammed any more than if a victim of criminal fraud deserves to lose the money they get scammed out of. Even if the are "stupid" or gullible, I don't think this kind of system should continue. That's the entire point of having regulatory bodies...to prevent this sort of thing. Unfortunately, the fox (the ABA) is watching the henhouse.

There's too many people in this profession who think crippling debt is something people who trust a university deserve.




Return to “Legal Employment”

Who is online

The online users are hidden on this forum.