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Author Topic: Why lawyers and judges suck. Reason number 32,542  (Read 6985 times)
dead0man
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« on: February 12, 2009, 04:46:34 am »
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An Indianapolis woman has sued Wal-Mart Stores and Netflix Inc., joining dozens of others who allege the retailers have tried to monopolize the online DVD rental market.

The lawsuit was filed Monday on behalf of Martha Karatz by Cohen & Malad, an Indianapolis firm known for handling class-action consumer complaints. It accuses Wal-Mart and Netflix of conspiring to divvy up the rental and sales markets for DVD movies.

About 40 similar lawsuits have been filed in the past three weeks.

Filed in U.S. District Court in Indianapolis, Karatz's lawsuit asks the court to declare it a class action, open to anyone who paid to rent DVDs from Netflix since May 19, 2005. Damages aren't specified.

The lawsuit says the conspiracy began when the chief executives of Netflix and Walmart.com met for dinner in January 2005. The following May, the companies agreed that Wal-Mart would stop competing with Netflix for online rentals, and Netflix would promote sales of new DVDs by Wal-Mart and not sell new DVDs in competition with them, the lawsuit says.
Shouldn't lawyers and judges know what the word "monopoly" means?
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Quote from:   Martha Gellhorn for The Atlantic 1961
The unique misfortune of the Palestinian refugees is that they are a weapon in what seems to be a permanent war...today, in the Middle East, you get a repeated sinking sensation about the Palestinian refugees: they are only a beginning, not an end. Their function is to hang around and be constantly useful as a goad. The ultimate aim is not such humane small potatoes as repatriating refugees.
dead0man
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« Reply #1 on: February 12, 2009, 06:53:54 am »
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For years, the juvenile court system in Wilkes-Barre operated like a conveyor belt: Youngsters were brought before judges without a lawyer, given hearings that lasted only a minute or two, and then sent off to juvenile prison for months for minor offenses.

The explanation, prosecutors say, was corruption on the bench.

In one of the most shocking cases of courtroom graft on record, two Pennsylvania judges have been charged with taking millions of dollars in kickbacks to send teenagers to two privately run youth detention centers.

"I've never encountered, and I don't think that we will in our lifetimes, a case where literally thousands of kids' lives were just tossed aside in order for a couple of judges to make some money," said Marsha Levick, an attorney with the Philadelphia-based Juvenile Law Center, which is representing hundreds of youths sentenced in Wilkes-Barre.

Prosecutors say Luzerne County Judges Mark Ciavarella and Michael Conahan took $2.6 million in payoffs to put juvenile offenders in lockups run by PA Child Care LLC and a sister company, Western PA Child Care LLC. The judges were charged on Jan. 26 and removed from the bench by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court shortly afterward.

No company officials have been charged, but the investigation is still going on.

The high court, meanwhile, is looking into whether hundreds or even thousands of sentences should be overturned and the juveniles' records expunged.

Among the offenders were teenagers who were locked up for months for stealing loose change from cars, writing a prank note and possessing drug paraphernalia. Many had never been in trouble before. Some were imprisoned even after probation officers recommended against it.

Many appeared without lawyers, despite the U.S. Supreme Court's landmark 1967 ruling that children have a constitutional right to counsel.

The judges are scheduled to plead guilty to fraud Thursday in federal court. Their plea agreements call for sentences of more than seven years behind bars.

Ciavarella, 58, who presided over Luzerne County's juvenile court for 12 years, acknowledged last week in a letter to his former colleagues, "I have disgraced my judgeship. My actions have destroyed everything I worked to accomplish and I have only myself to blame." Ciavarella, though, has denied he got kickbacks for sending youths to prison.

Conahan, 56, has remained silent about the case.

Many Pennsylvania counties contract with privately run juvenile detention centers, paying them either a fixed overall fee or a certain amount per youth, per day.

In Luzerne County, prosecutors say, Conahan shut down the county-run juvenile prison in 2002 and helped the two companies secure rich contracts worth tens of millions of dollars, at least some of that dependent on how many juveniles were locked up.
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Quote from:   Martha Gellhorn for The Atlantic 1961
The unique misfortune of the Palestinian refugees is that they are a weapon in what seems to be a permanent war...today, in the Middle East, you get a repeated sinking sensation about the Palestinian refugees: they are only a beginning, not an end. Their function is to hang around and be constantly useful as a goad. The ultimate aim is not such humane small potatoes as repatriating refugees.
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« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2009, 11:12:56 am »
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For years, the juvenile court system in Wilkes-Barre operated like a conveyor belt: Youngsters were brought before judges without a lawyer, given hearings that lasted only a minute or two, and then sent off to juvenile prison for months for minor offenses.

The explanation, prosecutors say, was corruption on the bench.

In one of the most shocking cases of courtroom graft on record, two Pennsylvania judges have been charged with taking millions of dollars in kickbacks to send teenagers to two privately run youth detention centers.

They better wind up getting damn more than just seven years for that.  That is the most disgusting abuse of the legal system that I've seen in ages.
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« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2009, 12:43:45 pm »
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« Reply #4 on: February 13, 2009, 01:25:01 pm »
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What does the first story have to do with judges, and the second have to do with lawyers? If a judge approved the case as having merit in the first one or lawyers were involved in the scheme in the second it might be valid, but that's not the case.
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dead0man
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« Reply #5 on: February 13, 2009, 02:06:08 pm »
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If the judges eventually turn down the case in the first one you may have a point.  As for the second, most Judges are lawyers right?
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Quote from:   Martha Gellhorn for The Atlantic 1961
The unique misfortune of the Palestinian refugees is that they are a weapon in what seems to be a permanent war...today, in the Middle East, you get a repeated sinking sensation about the Palestinian refugees: they are only a beginning, not an end. Their function is to hang around and be constantly useful as a goad. The ultimate aim is not such humane small potatoes as repatriating refugees.
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« Reply #6 on: February 16, 2009, 01:53:12 pm »
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How could they catch the bribee but not the briber?
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« Reply #7 on: March 06, 2009, 01:06:37 am »
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For years, the juvenile court system in Wilkes-Barre operated like a conveyor belt: Youngsters were brought before judges without a lawyer, given hearings that lasted only a minute or two, and then sent off to juvenile prison for months for minor offenses.

The explanation, prosecutors say, was corruption on the bench.

In one of the most shocking cases of courtroom graft on record, two Pennsylvania judges have been charged with taking millions of dollars in kickbacks to send teenagers to two privately run youth detention centers.

"I've never encountered, and I don't think that we will in our lifetimes, a case where literally thousands of kids' lives were just tossed aside in order for a couple of judges to make some money," said Marsha Levick, an attorney with the Philadelphia-based Juvenile Law Center, which is representing hundreds of youths sentenced in Wilkes-Barre.

Prosecutors say Luzerne County Judges Mark Ciavarella and Michael Conahan took $2.6 million in payoffs to put juvenile offenders in lockups run by PA Child Care LLC and a sister company, Western PA Child Care LLC. The judges were charged on Jan. 26 and removed from the bench by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court shortly afterward.

No company officials have been charged, but the investigation is still going on.

The high court, meanwhile, is looking into whether hundreds or even thousands of sentences should be overturned and the juveniles' records expunged.

Among the offenders were teenagers who were locked up for months for stealing loose change from cars, writing a prank note and possessing drug paraphernalia. Many had never been in trouble before. Some were imprisoned even after probation officers recommended against it.

Many appeared without lawyers, despite the U.S. Supreme Court's landmark 1967 ruling that children have a constitutional right to counsel.

The judges are scheduled to plead guilty to fraud Thursday in federal court. Their plea agreements call for sentences of more than seven years behind bars.

Ciavarella, 58, who presided over Luzerne County's juvenile court for 12 years, acknowledged last week in a letter to his former colleagues, "I have disgraced my judgeship. My actions have destroyed everything I worked to accomplish and I have only myself to blame." Ciavarella, though, has denied he got kickbacks for sending youths to prison.

Conahan, 56, has remained silent about the case.

Many Pennsylvania counties contract with privately run juvenile detention centers, paying them either a fixed overall fee or a certain amount per youth, per day.

In Luzerne County, prosecutors say, Conahan shut down the county-run juvenile prison in 2002 and helped the two companies secure rich contracts worth tens of millions of dollars, at least some of that dependent on how many juveniles were locked up.

I read about this one in The Economist... I think it's time to bring back the stocks.
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« Reply #8 on: March 17, 2009, 03:49:37 am »
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A state Supreme Court ruling that allows a Bettendorf woman to sue over injuries her daughter suffered when she was struck with an errant bat at a minor-league baseball game threatens the spirit of America's pastime, according to a judge who said his fellow justices have "taken a mighty swing ... and missed by a mile."

Justice Mark Cady's critique of Friday's 5-2 decision said generations of baseball fans have known that the potential for injury from a foul ball or shattered bat is part of the game's fabric.


Cady's lengthy dissent argues that the decision to let Cynthia Sweeney's lawsuit go forward has "changed the game."

"With this decision, America's pastime risks becoming a different, or less frequent, event for children than enjoyed in the past," he wrote. "There is no joy on this day around Iowa's ballparks."

The lawsuit stems from a June 2003 Quad City River Bandits game in Davenport that Tara Sweeney, 8, attended as part of a field trip organized by the Bettendorf parks and recreation department. Sweeney sat in the third or fourth row of bleachers about 30 feet past third base, beyond the area where a net protects spectators, according to court records.

When Sweeney turned her head to talk to a friend, a player lost control of his bat, which traveled about 120 feet and struck the girl in the head. Her mother had signed a liability waiver that absolved the city of responsibility for accidents or injuries on the field trip. But the Sweeneys argued that supervisors of the outing were nonetheless negligent.

A Scott County judge threw out the lawsuit.

But the Supreme Court ruled that the city had "a duty to ... protect the children's safety at the ballpark," adding that a jury could find parks employees put the child in an "unreasonably hazardous location" to watch the game.

<snip>

It's generally recognized that spectators can't sue for being hit by a foul ball, but the New Jersey Supreme Court in 2005 ruled in favor of a fan struck by a ball while in line to buy beer. The New Jersey justices said there should be no expectation that the fan could pay attention while in a concession line. That spurred legislators to pass a law that protects stadium owners from lawsuits.
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Quote from:   Martha Gellhorn for The Atlantic 1961
The unique misfortune of the Palestinian refugees is that they are a weapon in what seems to be a permanent war...today, in the Middle East, you get a repeated sinking sensation about the Palestinian refugees: they are only a beginning, not an end. Their function is to hang around and be constantly useful as a goad. The ultimate aim is not such humane small potatoes as repatriating refugees.
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« Reply #9 on: May 13, 2009, 04:43:30 am »
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More than a hundred children have died or been seriously injured in the last decade after squeezing through tiny pet doors and getting into swimming pools or other dangerous places, new research has found.

"What we see is a picture that's emerging which shows that the pet door is a really serious hazard in a home that no one has really had on the radar screen," said Sean Kane, of Safety Research and Strategies.

At the request of trial lawyers, Kane combed through hundreds of coroner's reports and media accounts.

"It's a very laborious task to get through the documents and the data and the connections to find these incidents," said Kane. "But I think at the end of this we're going to find hundreds of incidents."

Kane compared the issue with pet doors to the discovery of the pattern of children hurting themselves in cribs.

Millions of pet owners have installed the convenient devices, which allow cats and dogs to come and go at will. Some of the openings measure 8 by 11 inches, no bigger than a sheet of paper.

<snip>

"Parents don't appreciate that their children, even if they're bigger, can get through," said Dylan's father, Hank Didier, a Florida lawyer suing a pet door manufacturer for the family of two-year old Matthew Ranfone.

Matthew's mother Carol, of Spring Hill, Florida, found her son floating in the backyard swimming pool after he managed to get through a small pet door in the family home.

"I remember when the accident occurred," she recalled, "and thinking to myself, 'How in the world did he ever fit out of that door?'"

 The PetSafe door in the Ranfone home contained no warning to parents of the possible danger on its package or product instructions.

She was outraged to learn that many children had died under similar circumstances before her son.

"It was just unbelievable to me that all of these accidents happened as a result of doggie doors and how come I wasn't informed," she told ABC News.
They were shocked....SHOCKED I tells ya....to find out that doggy doors can be used as doors by small, dog sized people.  It's unbelievable to her that there are possibly as many as a hundred other Americans (out of the millions that bought doggy doors) that are as stupid and careless as she was.
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Quote from:   Martha Gellhorn for The Atlantic 1961
The unique misfortune of the Palestinian refugees is that they are a weapon in what seems to be a permanent war...today, in the Middle East, you get a repeated sinking sensation about the Palestinian refugees: they are only a beginning, not an end. Their function is to hang around and be constantly useful as a goad. The ultimate aim is not such humane small potatoes as repatriating refugees.
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« Reply #10 on: May 13, 2009, 05:04:08 am »
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have you given up on the count?
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dead0man
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« Reply #11 on: May 13, 2009, 05:25:44 am »
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The link has the number.
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Quote from:   Martha Gellhorn for The Atlantic 1961
The unique misfortune of the Palestinian refugees is that they are a weapon in what seems to be a permanent war...today, in the Middle East, you get a repeated sinking sensation about the Palestinian refugees: they are only a beginning, not an end. Their function is to hang around and be constantly useful as a goad. The ultimate aim is not such humane small potatoes as repatriating refugees.
dead0man
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« Reply #12 on: May 13, 2009, 05:57:12 am »
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The Pacific Justice Institute is suing a California school district after students were addressed by a lesbian pastor.

Brad Dacus, founder of the Pacific Justice Institute, tells OneNewsNow a lesbian minister visited Castro Valley High School and gave a presentation called "Out for Good." The parents found out about the incident after the fact.
 
"A lesbian minister was invited to guest lecture for math and science classes," he explains. "At that time, she shared her personal views on homosexuality, including a discussion of her lesbian wedding, the homosexual prom, and other such events and things that many parents were very concerned about once they heard this had taken place."
I'm pretty sure American High School kids can handle a discussion about lesbian prom and it's not going to turn anybody gay that wasn't already on that road anyway.
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Quote from:   Martha Gellhorn for The Atlantic 1961
The unique misfortune of the Palestinian refugees is that they are a weapon in what seems to be a permanent war...today, in the Middle East, you get a repeated sinking sensation about the Palestinian refugees: they are only a beginning, not an end. Their function is to hang around and be constantly useful as a goad. The ultimate aim is not such humane small potatoes as repatriating refugees.
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« Reply #13 on: May 13, 2009, 08:26:05 pm »
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The Pacific Justice Institute is suing a California school district after students were addressed by a lesbian pastor.

Brad Dacus, founder of the Pacific Justice Institute, tells OneNewsNow a lesbian minister visited Castro Valley High School and gave a presentation called "Out for Good." The parents found out about the incident after the fact.
 
"A lesbian minister was invited to guest lecture for math and science classes," he explains. "At that time, she shared her personal views on homosexuality, including a discussion of her lesbian wedding, the homosexual prom, and other such events and things that many parents were very concerned about once they heard this had taken place."
I'm pretty sure American High School kids can handle a discussion about lesbian prom and it's not going to turn anybody gay that wasn't already on that road anyway.

But I will say that that was a waste of math and science class time.
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« Reply #14 on: May 14, 2009, 01:12:44 am »
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Um, I'm pretty sure that two companies conspiring to control an entire market is illegal. I'm no "lawyer" of course, but it sounds pretty sketch.
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dead0man
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« Reply #15 on: May 14, 2009, 01:29:02 am »
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Um, I'm pretty sure that two companies conspiring to control an entire market is illegal. I'm no "lawyer" of course, but it sounds pretty sketch.
You know two companies can get together for the betterment of both and it is still not a monopoly right?  That isn't "conspiring to control an entire market".  Nothing and I mean NOTHING is stopping anybody else from renting you DVDs through the mail.  Blockbuster ships DVDs to millions of customers for example.
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Quote from:   Martha Gellhorn for The Atlantic 1961
The unique misfortune of the Palestinian refugees is that they are a weapon in what seems to be a permanent war...today, in the Middle East, you get a repeated sinking sensation about the Palestinian refugees: they are only a beginning, not an end. Their function is to hang around and be constantly useful as a goad. The ultimate aim is not such humane small potatoes as repatriating refugees.
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« Reply #16 on: May 14, 2009, 03:01:18 am »
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Um, I'm pretty sure that two companies conspiring to control an entire market is illegal. I'm no "lawyer" of course, but it sounds pretty sketch.
You know two companies can get together for the betterment of both and it is still not a monopoly right?  That isn't "conspiring to control an entire market".  Nothing and I mean NOTHING is stopping anybody else from renting you DVDs through the mail.  Blockbuster ships DVDs to millions of customers for example.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Collusion

It's not a monopoly, but it's still illegal as far as I can see (if the allegations are true, of course).
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dead0man
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« Reply #17 on: May 14, 2009, 03:14:21 am »
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Collusion is an agreement, usually secretive, which occurs between two or more persons to deceive, mislead, or defraud others of their legal rights, or to obtain an objective forbidden by law typically involving fraud or gaining an unfair advantage.
Which part of this did Netflix and WalMart do exactly?  They defrauded no one of their legal rights.  They didn't obtain an objective forbidden by law or gain an unfair advantage.  Nothing they did hurt Blockbuster or anybody else trying to deliver DVDs by mail.

Unless I'm missunderstanding the allegations, which is certainly possible.

How do you feel about Wal Mart normally?
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Quote from:   Martha Gellhorn for The Atlantic 1961
The unique misfortune of the Palestinian refugees is that they are a weapon in what seems to be a permanent war...today, in the Middle East, you get a repeated sinking sensation about the Palestinian refugees: they are only a beginning, not an end. Their function is to hang around and be constantly useful as a goad. The ultimate aim is not such humane small potatoes as repatriating refugees.
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« Reply #18 on: September 02, 2009, 06:08:01 am »
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The criminal is finding new and legal ways to victimize the people he ripped off and threatened to kill.

"Ridiculous," says a loyal and longtime customer of Nick's Short Stop Party Store regarding 22-year-old Scott Thomas Zeilinski decision to sue the store owner and some of the clerks after he, Zeilinski, was shot during an armed robbery.

Zeilinski is serving an 8-22 year sentence for the robbery that happened in November of 2007.

According to police and court records, Zeilinski came in wearing a mask and carrying a knife that he put to the throats of several employees, threatening to kill them before stealing cigarettes and cash. As he was leaving--reportedly still making threats--one of the young clerks grabbed a gun and shot him in the arm and back. Zeilinski's lawyer says his client is asking in excess of $125,000 for pain and suffering and emotional distress.

Since the robbery the store owner has spent thousands of dollars on security to keep his employees safe. He says he is hoping nothing like this ever happens again.

Zelinski says the incident "ruined his life" and believes the store is responsible for it.
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Quote from:   Martha Gellhorn for The Atlantic 1961
The unique misfortune of the Palestinian refugees is that they are a weapon in what seems to be a permanent war...today, in the Middle East, you get a repeated sinking sensation about the Palestinian refugees: they are only a beginning, not an end. Their function is to hang around and be constantly useful as a goad. The ultimate aim is not such humane small potatoes as repatriating refugees.
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« Reply #19 on: September 02, 2009, 10:54:31 am »
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What a load of bullshit.
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« Reply #20 on: September 02, 2009, 12:27:25 pm »
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Please note that in each of these cases it is a lawyer who prosecutes the SOB corrupt judges, who fights against the would be-robber's frivolous lawsuit, a judge who will sentence those disgraceful ex-judges, and a judge who will ultimately throw out the crappy robber's lawsuit.

Blaming lawyers for filing lawsuits is like blaming a linebacker for sacking the quarterback.
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« Reply #21 on: September 02, 2009, 02:10:27 pm »
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No, blaming lawyers for filing idiotic lawsuits is like blaming the linebacker for sacking the guy selling the wrong brand of beer.
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Quote from:   Martha Gellhorn for The Atlantic 1961
The unique misfortune of the Palestinian refugees is that they are a weapon in what seems to be a permanent war...today, in the Middle East, you get a repeated sinking sensation about the Palestinian refugees: they are only a beginning, not an end. Their function is to hang around and be constantly useful as a goad. The ultimate aim is not such humane small potatoes as repatriating refugees.
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« Reply #22 on: September 02, 2009, 08:39:12 pm »
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No, blaming lawyers for filing idiotic lawsuits is like blaming the linebacker for sacking the guy selling the wrong brand of beer.
Lawyers generally don't file lawsuits they don't believe can win them money. Even "nusiance" lawsuits usually risk quick summary judgment if they lack a basis. There are obvious exceptions, just like doctors, engineers, etc., except usually the worst lawyers and abusive lawsuits garner far more media attention as it plays to everyone hating lawyers.

Everyone, that is, until they need one.
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« Reply #23 on: March 05, 2010, 01:14:05 am »
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If you've forgotten why lawyers have approval ratings as low as politicians and journalists, take a look at this letter written recently by William Ogletree, a Texas lawyer. The 62-year-old Ogletree, you see, was headed to Las Vegas on December 30 when he stopped at a pizza place in the Houston airport. Upon departing the food court in Terminal C, Ogletree somehow forgot to take his "expensive black leather coat," an XL Polo model (with a fashionable plaid lining) worth $800. Not surprisingly, the coat subsequently disappeared. Now Ogletree is threatening to sue the City of Houston, Continental Airlines, and the food court's management company for failing to have "collected the coat, kept it in a secure place and held it for a reasonable time" until he was able to reunite with the garment. These prospective defendants, Ogletree reasoned, "breached their duty" in connection with how they "manage lost and found items for which they are responsible." In his January 18 litigation threat letter, a copy of which you'll find below, Ogletree, pictured at right, noted that "further legal action" could be avoided if he simply was paid $800 "for the cost of the coat." Ogletree did not respond to a message left at his office, so TSG can offer no further Ogletree thoughts on the subject of personal responsibility.
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Quote from:   Martha Gellhorn for The Atlantic 1961
The unique misfortune of the Palestinian refugees is that they are a weapon in what seems to be a permanent war...today, in the Middle East, you get a repeated sinking sensation about the Palestinian refugees: they are only a beginning, not an end. Their function is to hang around and be constantly useful as a goad. The ultimate aim is not such humane small potatoes as repatriating refugees.
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