Law in Contemporary Society

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ClassNotesApr10 2 - 22 Jan 2009 - Main.IanSullivan
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 -- DanielButrymowicz - 23 Apr 2008

ClassNotesApr10 1 - 23 Apr 2008 - Main.DanielButrymowicz
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-- DanielButrymowicz - 23 Apr 2008

Music- Rolling Stones- Street Fighting Man

You can think of a lot of reasons why you might want to understand a Judge. Going back to Cohen, in order to predict what Judges will do, it would be valuable to know them.

So who is Judge Day?

She has a property that was variously described yesterday as anger, fear, anxiety, and depression. On the subway, she is thinking about potential liability if she is injured. This is why, she says, lawyers are sick.

Julian- Once you start thinking like a lawyer, you can’t go back to the way you were before. But this is not the lesson to learn from Judge Day.

The only actual subject in evidence is: are you standing up or are you sitting down? Which means, in the social context in which you find yourself at the moment, are you objecting or not? The Judge should know the minute you are standing up why you are standing up. Evidence is really training your muscles to reflexively stand when you need to object. The problem with the evidence course is that it teaches evidence as arithmetic when in reality it is a social awareness.

What’s the use of a photograph of an injury? The jury believes it and is outraged by it.

With Thoreau, the occurrences that cause wrongful termination lie between what you can prove and what you can’t.

What did Robinson say about lawsuits you imagine in your head? Learned Hand, a strong judge, said lawsuits should be considered like death or serious injury. They should be avoided, don’t imagine them. Judge Day imagines lawsuits for “fun.”

The fact that the class couldn’t remember this information shows we need to train ourselves to retain what people say based on what it means. It’s a useful skill

She is thinking about lawsuits because she is afraid. Things are pushing her buttons and she is thinking about who to sue. Eben thinks that on this evidence, she would have been better suited to general counsel than Judge. She’s doing this to control her fear.

But why is she fearful? She has a weak back. She says “One day I’ll be crippled,” with a smile.

Thoreau is nostalgic. Day, on the other hand, does not talk about sunrise. She talks about storms blowing in off the ocean. She’s looking toward the future with anxiety, and it’s in her. Her physical person is crucial to who she is. The biology of being her (phenotype) is the locus of a good deal of anxiety.

Law lets her achieve a sense of control over this. She thinks that good listeners aren’t necessarily infrequent talkers. The problem comes when talkers don’t listen to what they’re saying.

She says, “The older I get, the more I find myself over this line in my head where I’m just watching.” Why the word “just?” It’s a control issue.

One thing she’s learning as a judge is not to let her anger out. If the judge seems angry the record will look really bad. Eben has gone so far as to hire lawyers who annoyed the judge in order to make the record look bad. This is a tactic of last resort.

The smartest lawyer she ever knew said “if you look hard enough for an answer, you’ll find it.” This is the same thing as Robinson’s assertion that “a lawyer is a person who solves a legal problem.”

Day is good at taking the whole body of things and assembling it. She thinks there is an answer to every question if you look hard enough.

If you had to try a case in front of her tomorrow, what are you learning from this? Who should you send into the courtroom. She’s not an active collaborator judge. Eben can predict that she’s not an active settler of cases.

Why are the author and the Judge together? (How is the narrative framed?) They are working together on a bar association report of political criticisms of judges. Bar organizations encourage (government doing right), view with alarm (socialism), and deplore (this).

Day is not collaborative. You don’t send in a lawyer who is dressed to collaborate with her. She thinks this is smarmy. Plus she isn’t good at it, and you should never try to get judges to do things they aren’t good at.

So don’t send in young and sexy. Don’t send in cocky team. Send in the un-flashy office scholar. You want the ones who exude preparation. Build the case for comfort not for speed. No fancy theories, no flashy moves. Just knowledge of the law.

Why are lawyers always liars? Because they know too much. When you know that much, how can you not lie? They are sincere, but don’t tell you everything about why they’re doing what they’re doing. They know about the judge, but don’t admit to that knowledge. That’s why you always want an ex-clerk on the team.

Intermission- Racing in the Streets, Bruce Springsteen

Think about how that narrative is constructed. Those shop rats racing in the streets could be lawyers except nobody gave them a chance.

What about the revolution stuff? What’s this big dark future she’s afraid of? A state of civil wars. A complicated society that goes to war with itself along all its lines of internal differentiation. And what’s going to make that happen?

The moment where the lawyer on the subway loses respectability when he lies, not when he pursues the girl. Lawyers can’t misrepresent facts. They can spin things ,but they can’t lie about facts.

She has prosecuted weapons and terrorism in New York. One of her fears was justified (9/11). This should remind us that it was totally foreseeable. After that, we went through a series of steps, waged wars, became torturers, etc. And we regained control. And some people rose because of it.


Revision 2r2 - 22 Jan 2009 - 00:45:10 - IanSullivan
Revision 1r1 - 23 Apr 2008 - 05:31:55 - DanielButrymowicz
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