Why aren't we solving real world problems?

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waitlisted1
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Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby waitlisted1 » Wed Oct 27, 2010 8:30 pm

Why are we only reviewing old cases and such, when we could be reviewing currently ongoing ones?

I just feel like I am "going through the motions" half the time with this stuff. At this point in our lives, why aren't we pushed into the community a little more in an effort to try to help others and solve some REAL problems in the world.

It's like we are just given mindless, pointless work to fill our lives for three years. Why can't we, with the supervision of a professor, work on cases that NO ONE YET KNOWS THE ANSWERS TO.

For instance, net neutrality, illegal immigration, death penalty.

Or even smaller cases like evictions and other stuff...things which affect our life today. I feel like it's 95% bullshit cases, and 5% of practical stuff.

Why can't it be at least closer to the lines of 50-50.

I'm a 1L.

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rayiner
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby rayiner » Wed Oct 27, 2010 8:32 pm

waitlisted1 wrote:Why are we only reviewing old cases and such, when we could be reviewing currently ongoing ones?

I just feel like I am "going through the motions" half the time with this stuff. At this point in our lives, why aren't we pushed into the community a little more in an effort to try to help others and solve some REAL problems in the world.

It's like we are just given mindless, pointless work to fill our lives for three years. Why can't we, with the supervision of a professor, work on cases that NO ONE YET KNOWS THE ANSWERS TO.

For instance, net neutrality, illegal immigration, death penalty.

Or even smaller cases like evictions and other stuff...things which affect our life today. I feel like it's 95% bullshit cases, and 5% of practical stuff.

Why can't it be at least closer to the lines of 50-50.

I'm a 1L.


How are you supposed to work on new cases when you don't know the rules by which the old cases were decided (ie: the law).

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IAFG
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby IAFG » Wed Oct 27, 2010 8:34 pm

waitlisted1 wrote:I'm a 1L.

... parody of a 1L?

keg411
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby keg411 » Wed Oct 27, 2010 8:37 pm

FWIW, my contracts class kind of works like that. (We get packets with fake problems and then have to read the cases in the packets to analyze the problems). However, they are all very small, basic, real world problems ("is the contract enforceable when.... is the a contract when... etc.). And we are still reading old cases to analyze the packet problem.

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Pizon
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby Pizon » Wed Oct 27, 2010 8:40 pm

This is a common frustration during 1L year. During your second and third years, you'll get to pick classes that cover current issues (e.g., there are classes on Internet, immigration, and death penalty law). It also helps to get involved with some student organizations that interest you, or just go see the guest speakers who speak at your school about today's legal controversies.

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Grizz
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby Grizz » Wed Oct 27, 2010 8:43 pm

Speak for yourself, hippie, I just want models and bottles.

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beach_terror
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby beach_terror » Wed Oct 27, 2010 9:07 pm

rad law wrote:Speak for yourself, hippie, I just want models and bottles.

waitlisted1
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby waitlisted1 » Wed Oct 27, 2010 9:40 pm

rad law wrote:Speak for yourself, hippie, I just want models and bottles.


Easy, Fonze.

I don't know what law school you're going to, but I doubt your rockin' either of those much. If you were you wouldn't be trolling law school forums all night.

You'll never make up for what you missed in college.

You too, @beachterror.

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Paichka
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby Paichka » Wed Oct 27, 2010 10:01 pm

You have to walk before you can run. As someone else mentioned, after 1L, you'll have free rein to pick the classes you want to take -- that will include the things you mentioned like net neutrality and the death penalty.

Besides, there's no such thing as a case that no one knows the answer to...there's only cases where people haven't yet convinced a majority that their position is the correct one. :-p

Another thing to think about, if you want to solve real world problems, is to apply for a clinic as a 2 or 3L. You'll be dealing with real clients in real world situations, under the supervision of a real practicing attorney. My school has several that put participants in the position of arguing actual cases in the DC misdemeanor court. Clinics are real problems. Get good grades, LEARN your 1L law, and apply to a clinic.

Anonymous Loser
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby Anonymous Loser » Wed Oct 27, 2010 10:12 pm

waitlisted1 wrote:Why are we only reviewing old cases and such, when we could be reviewing currently ongoing ones?

I just feel like I am "going through the motions" half the time with this stuff. At this point in our lives, why aren't we pushed into the community a little more in an effort to try to help others and solve some REAL problems in the world.

It's like we are just given mindless, pointless work to fill our lives for three years. Why can't we, with the supervision of a professor, work on cases that NO ONE YET KNOWS THE ANSWERS TO.

For instance, net neutrality, illegal immigration, death penalty.

Or even smaller cases like evictions and other stuff...things which affect our life today. I feel like it's 95% bullshit cases, and 5% of practical stuff.

Why can't it be at least closer to the lines of 50-50.

I'm a 1L.


Nothing's stopping you from getting up from your computer and volunteering to help out at your local legal aid society. Instead of whining on the internet, take initiative and get out there and do something.

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Grizz
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby Grizz » Wed Oct 27, 2010 10:34 pm

waitlisted1 wrote:
rad law wrote:Speak for yourself, hippie, I just want models and bottles.


Easy, Fonze.

I don't know what law school you're going to, but I doubt your rockin' either of those much. If you were you wouldn't be trolling law school forums all night.

You'll never make up for what you missed in college.

You too, @beachterror.


lol no

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vamedic03
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby vamedic03 » Thu Oct 28, 2010 12:35 am

waitlisted1 wrote:Why are we only reviewing old cases and such, when we could be reviewing currently ongoing ones?

I just feel like I am "going through the motions" half the time with this stuff. At this point in our lives, why aren't we pushed into the community a little more in an effort to try to help others and solve some REAL problems in the world.

It's like we are just given mindless, pointless work to fill our lives for three years. Why can't we, with the supervision of a professor, work on cases that NO ONE YET KNOWS THE ANSWERS TO.

For instance, net neutrality, illegal immigration, death penalty.

Or even smaller cases like evictions and other stuff...things which affect our life today. I feel like it's 95% bullshit cases, and 5% of practical stuff.

Why can't it be at least closer to the lines of 50-50.

I'm a 1L.


Once you understand legal reasoning, you'll understand why this is a silly complaint.

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vanwinkle
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby vanwinkle » Thu Oct 28, 2010 12:42 am

waitlisted1 wrote:Why are we only reviewing old cases and such, when we could be reviewing currently ongoing ones?

I just feel like I am "going through the motions" half the time with this stuff. At this point in our lives, why aren't we pushed into the community a little more in an effort to try to help others and solve some REAL problems in the world.

It's like we are just given mindless, pointless work to fill our lives for three years. Why can't we, with the supervision of a professor, work on cases that NO ONE YET KNOWS THE ANSWERS TO.

For instance, net neutrality, illegal immigration, death penalty.

Or even smaller cases like evictions and other stuff...things which affect our life today. I feel like it's 95% bullshit cases, and 5% of practical stuff.

Why can't it be at least closer to the lines of 50-50.

I'm a 1L.

To make a real difference, one must contribute substantively to ongoing cases.

To contribute substantively, one must know how the law works.

To know how the law works, one must study the law and how cases are decided.

To study the law and how cases are decided, one must look at already-decided cases.

If you're not looking at already-decided cases, you're not learning how those cases were decided, you're not learning how the law works, and you're not going to know how to contribute substantively to anything.

I wonder if there's a Top-Med-Schools.com out there where people ask, "Why are we operating on cadavers when we could be doing surgery on live people right now?"

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vanwinkle
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby vanwinkle » Thu Oct 28, 2010 1:32 am

betasteve wrote:The OP makes me want to randomly abort babies.

Well, at least you'd be solving a real world problem...

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bk1
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby bk1 » Thu Oct 28, 2010 1:36 am

vanwinkle wrote:I wonder if there's a Top-Med-Schools.com out there where people ask, "Why are we operating on cadavers when we could be doing surgery on live people right now?"


lol

waitlisted1
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby waitlisted1 » Thu Oct 28, 2010 2:20 am

Nice, smartasses.

At this point, one of the first issues I want to fix after becoming a lawyer is to abolish the Bar requirement.

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vanwinkle
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby vanwinkle » Thu Oct 28, 2010 2:26 am

waitlisted1 wrote:Nice, smartasses.

At this point, one of the first issues I want to fix after becoming a lawyer is to abolish the Bar requirement.

The first sentence suggests you want to be taken seriously, but the second makes abundantly clear that you shouldn't...

waitlisted1
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby waitlisted1 » Thu Oct 28, 2010 2:28 am

After working in an actual law firm and then subsequently beginning law school, I've found that one of the main differences between law school and a law firm is that...

In law school, you are taught to solve problems via judicial law; that is, using the logic of previous cases to FIND a conclusion.

In the real world, you use previous cases to SUPPORT a conclusion. The work is done ad hoc. You have a point to espouse, and you find whatever you can (court cases, politics, appeals to reason, etc) to support that. Moreover, I think I've been so jaded as to how little the "court cases" part actually affects the decision. There are so many other (often, unspoken and implicit) factors that go into a judicial ruling, that case law just seems minimally influential. Cases can practically ALWAYS be distinguishable from previous cases.

And this is why, so far, I've found law school tedious. And to say I want to solve real world problems is to say that I don't want to spend 10 hours of my day doing this tedious stuff, when I could really be getting my hands dirty in the community helping those who are being taken advantage of.

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vanwinkle
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby vanwinkle » Thu Oct 28, 2010 2:55 am

waitlisted1 wrote:In the real world, you use previous cases to SUPPORT a conclusion. The work is done ad hoc. You have a point to espouse, and you find whatever you can (court cases, politics, appeals to reason, etc) to support that. Moreover, I think I've been so jaded as to how little the "court cases" part actually affects the decision. There are so many other (often, unspoken and implicit) factors that go into a judicial ruling, that case law just seems minimally influential. Cases can practically ALWAYS be distinguishable from previous cases.

This is what you should be doing in your classes, too. If you look at an exam question in December, "find" the right answer and name the case that gives that answer and stop there, you're going to do very poorly. Your grade is based on your ability to do exactly what you said, support a conclusion, pull out policy and rational arguments, show how there are cases that could support either position but give reasons why what you're concluding is superior. The outcome on most exam questions isn't clear, I've seen many questions where you could easily come out either way, and your job will be to pick a side and then support it in exactly the same way you just described, based on everything you learned over the semester about both the case holdings and the factors that went into them. You'd better know all of that and how to apply it by exam day if you want to do well.

waitlisted1 wrote:And this is why, so far, I've found law school tedious. And to say I want to solve real world problems is to say that I don't want to spend 10 hours of my day doing this tedious stuff, when I could really be getting my hands dirty in the community helping those who are being taken advantage of.

That "tedious stuff" is called "learning". Most people understand they have to learn before they can do. But you'll get plenty of opportunities after your first semester to do pro bono and clinical stuff if you really want to.

waitlisted1
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby waitlisted1 » Thu Oct 28, 2010 3:09 am

vanwinkle wrote:This is what you should be doing in your classes, too. If you look at an exam question in December, "find" the right answer and name the case that gives that answer and stop there, you're going to do very poorly. Your grade is based on your ability to do exactly what you said, support a conclusion, pull out policy and rational arguments, show how there are cases that could support either position but give reasons why what you're concluding is superior. The outcome on most exam questions isn't clear, I've seen many questions where you could easily come out either way, and your job will be to pick a side and then support it in exactly the same way you just described, based on everything you learned over the semester about both the case holdings and the factors that went into them. You'd better know all of that and how to apply it by exam day if you want to do well.

That "tedious stuff" is called "learning". Most people understand they have to learn before they can do. But you'll get plenty of opportunities after your first semester to do pro bono and clinical stuff if you really want to.


@VanWinkle...you seem like a wise and understanding person. Thank you for your time on this thread. You make a good point, and I admit I should humble myself and just shut up and learn for a while (and I do that during school, which is why I am venting on this forum). I think you are going to make a great lawyer.

My final gripe with law school so far is the time commitment. I do want to take part in pro bono, clinics, etc., but right now, I pull about 8-10 hour days for law school. I just think that's unnecessary. I do not believe that the BEST attorneys are those that inundate themselves with the law. It is not like gymnastics or some sport (olympics or professional) where if you want to be the best you need to practice 24/7. In addition to being good at the law, I want to be a well-rounded person and that includes keeping up many of my old hobbies. In many ways, I think the "total devotion" mentality of law school (at least 1L...although I hear it doesn't change much second or third year) is a bit debilitating. Personally I think that a full-time student should take 4 classes instead of 5 and part-time students should take 3 instead of 4. It just seems unnecessarily burdensome.

I think the real importance of a legal education is to make all of us better, wiser citizens.

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sophia.olive
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby sophia.olive » Thu Oct 28, 2010 3:32 am

waitlisted1 wrote:Why are we only reviewing old cases and such, when we could be reviewing currently ongoing ones?

I just feel like I am "going through the motions" half the time with this stuff. At this point in our lives, why aren't we pushed into the community a little more in an effort to try to help others and solve some REAL problems in the world.

It's like we are just given mindless, pointless work to fill our lives for three years. Why can't we, with the supervision of a professor, work on cases that NO ONE YET KNOWS THE ANSWERS TO.

For instance, net neutrality, illegal immigration, death penalty.

Or even smaller cases like evictions and other stuff...things which affect our life today. I feel like it's 95% bullshit cases, and 5% of practical stuff.

Why can't it be at least closer to the lines of 50-50.

I'm a 1L.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PKc_QNAg ... re=related

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savagedm
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby savagedm » Thu Oct 28, 2010 12:36 pm

rayiner wrote:
waitlisted1 wrote:Blah blah blah I know everything.


How are you supposed to work on new cases when you don't know the rules by which the old cases were decided (ie: the law).


--ImageRemoved--

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rayiner
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby rayiner » Thu Oct 28, 2010 1:10 pm

Unlike vanwinkle, I am not a wise and understanding person. The comment earlier is absolutely TCR:

I wonder if there's a Top-Med-Schools.com out there where people ask, "Why are we operating on cadavers when we could be doing surgery on live people right now?"


The shit-headery of law students seems unique in that in nearly every other field, students know that they don't know jack shit and are willing to learn. Law students are under the delusion that they actually have something to contribute.

You did nothing substantive to get into law school. You got bullshit grades in some bullshit major and took some bullshit exam where you filled in bubbles for a few hours. You don't know jack shit so stop acting like you do.

Example of your general shit-headdery:

some shithead wrote:In law school, you are taught to solve problems via judicial law; that is, using the logic of previous cases to FIND a conclusion.

In the real world, you use previous cases to SUPPORT a conclusion.


In the real world you use previous cases to support a conclusion. This requires: 1) figuring out what rule is in the previous case (how else do you know if it supports your conclusion?) 2) applying a rule to argue for a particular conclusion.

Law school teaches you 1) via case reading and 2) via the exam. The only trick is that on the exam you don't just have to support one conclusion, you have to identify and support all the reasonable conclusions you could make.
Last edited by rayiner on Thu Oct 28, 2010 1:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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beach_terror
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby beach_terror » Thu Oct 28, 2010 1:11 pm

rayiner wrote:
You did nothing substantive to get into law school. You got bullshit grades in some bullshit major and took some bullshit exam where you filled in bubbles for a few hours. You don't know jack shit so stop acting like you do.


TITCR (also models and bottles)

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vamedic03
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Re: Why aren't we solving real world problems?

Postby vamedic03 » Thu Oct 28, 2010 2:57 pm

waitlisted1 wrote:After working in an actual law firm and then subsequently beginning law school, I've found that one of the main differences between law school and a law firm is that...

In law school, you are taught to solve problems via judicial law; that is, using the logic of previous cases to FIND a conclusion.

In the real world, you use previous cases to SUPPORT a conclusion. The work is done ad hoc. You have a point to espouse, and you find whatever you can (court cases, politics, appeals to reason, etc) to support that. Moreover, I think I've been so jaded as to how little the "court cases" part actually affects the decision. There are so many other (often, unspoken and implicit) factors that go into a judicial ruling, that case law just seems minimally influential. Cases can practically ALWAYS be distinguishable from previous cases.

And this is why, so far, I've found law school tedious. And to say I want to solve real world problems is to say that I don't want to spend 10 hours of my day doing this tedious stuff, when I could really be getting my hands dirty in the community helping those who are being taken advantage of.


You don't get it.

1) Yes, in law school you learn how cases are applied to a fact pattern to try and predict how a court will resolve an issue.

2) In the real world, you don't have the luxury of being the independent arbitrator. Instead, you have a paying client who needs outcome X and its your job to craft the legal argument to support outcome X. But, how do you do this? You do this through careful research and creating an argument that will lead a court to follow a certain line of reasoning to reach outcome X. How do you get to developing this line of reasoning? By understanding how the court applies the law.

3) There are many factors that effect a court's decision. But, court's will still find a way to apply the legal reasoning to achieve the outcome. Yes, you can go on a diatribe about legal realism - but, you should understand that legal realism is not the only theory of jurisprudence.

4) Before you go out there and solve real world problems, you better have a fucking clue of what to do. You need to have a thorough understanding of the black letter law. You need to understand how to read cases and how the common law develops. In other words, you need to learn to "think like a lawyer." To get to this stage, you need to go through 1L.

5) Finally, and this is an extremely important point, a major part of law school (especially first year) is to socialize you to the profession. All professional programs do this. 1L and the casebook method is how the law does it. If you try and rebel against this you're going to hate law school.

So, stop bitching, start studying, and learn the profession. Learn to have balance in your life and spend time outside of school. You can get involved in pro bono projects once you start to understand the profession.




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