Thursday, April 7, 2011
Law Review Article Explores Why the Vulgar Scam-Blogs Are So Effective
The technologically-challenged Minnesota Journal of Law, Science and Technology finally published its most current edition. “Executive administrator” Monica Wittstock said that this volume would be online in mid-January. When I talked to her, I was told that this would be available by mid-February. Oh well. What can one expect from a tertiary, fifth-rate legal journal? Thanks for eventually getting off your ass, Monica.
The lone gem is a piece written by associate professor Lucille Jewel, which is entitled, “You’re Doing It Wrong: How the Anti-Law School Scam Blogging Movement Can Shape the Legal Profession.” Check out this excerpt from page 243:
“With regard to the Scam Blog movement, its shock-value approaches to rhetoric would certainly violate the legal profession’s cultural tradition of favoring formal, restrained, and process-oriented debates of legal issues. This Article argues that the good that comes to the profession from Internet culture outweighs the bad.” [Emphasis mine]
Who gives a damn if these sites “violate” the industry’s staid, sterile “cultural tradition”?! In the end, the pigs at the top simply want to control and shape the debate. If you can frame the language and content, then you control the discussion.
As JDU user “MataHairy” wrote, in this thread: “[R]ead your [O]rwell--if you control the language, you control thoughts, at least to some degree.”
The fact remains that the “legal profession” considers itself an upper class bastion. Since its inception, the ABA has been dominated by corporate lawyers. These pigs sought to “sanitize” the profession, by marginalizing those of “questionable moral character,” i.e. foreign-born and ethnic lawyers. See how long it took for the ABA to come around on civil rights.
Take a look at how the organization has always been in Biglaw's pocket. The industry has been highly stratified, largely because of this organization. For decades, Biglaw went out of its way to hold back black, female, Jewish, and other ethnic white lawyers. For an excellent, in-depth, historical account of this corrupt industry, check out Unequal Justice: Lawyers and Social Change in Modern America, by Jerold S. Auerbach.
From page 263 of Jewel's article:
“Regarding those toilets, the Scam Blog movement has whole-heartedly embraced several aspects of Internet culture, including a penchant for norm enforcement through griping, public shaming, and the use of crude and vulgar rhetoric. In the context of norm enforcement through public shaming, the norm the Scam Bloggers have in mind is that law graduates should be able to enjoy a dignified career and maintain a comfortable standard of living while paying off law school student loans. Thus, the Scam Bloggers seek to publicly shame both institutions (law schools) and certain individuals affiliated with those institutions who are perceived to have breached this norm. For instance, Nando from Third Tier Reality routinely publishes “profiles” of law schools with high tuition costs and a low U.S. News and World Report ranking. Full of scatological imagery of overflowing toilets, disgusting sewage drains, and fecal matter, this author does not mince words or images as he holds out these institutions for public shame.”
It is refreshing to see an academic refer to low-ranked law schools as toilets, especially in a law review article.
On page 273:
“While it is not possible to quantify with certainty the effect that the Scam Blogging community had in prompting the ABA to look into reform, based on the chronology of media coverage of the blogs, a strong inference can be drawn that the Scam Bloggers played a substantial role.” [Emphasis mine]
Here is another excerpt, this one from page 276:
“The ideas articulated by the Scam Bloggers have certainly been expressed before in more traditional formats, such as law review articles and papers, but because law professors are speaking to each other primarily in logo-centric and formal fashion, an academic idea often fails to resonate with many members of the profession or public. The Scam Bloggers’ rhetoric, with its in-your-face vulgarity and its narrative approach, is what gives the movement so much of its cultural power.” [Emphasis mine]
The author understands that these blogs have helped attract mainstream media attention to the problem of lawyer oversaturation. We received a large boost when Brian Tamanaha publicly supported our argument, if not our tone. The fact is these blogs gained coverage, largely due to our aggressive style and rhetoric. Having the facts on our side certainly helps, too.
In the final analysis, vulgar simply means “Of or relating to the common people.” What is wrong with that? Again, we are covering a filthy industry filled with reprobates, pigs, bums, cockroaches, liars, and financial goons. We are beating these rats over the head with their own statements and actions. Did you expect a sanitized depiction? That would be intellectually dishonest.
NOTHING on these blogs is as indecent, crass, vile or disgusting as this conduct and behavior, on the part of legal “educators”:
“When I was a candidate for this job,” said Phillip J. Closius, the dean of the University of Baltimore School of Law, “I said ‘I can talk for 10 minutes about the fallacies of the U.S. News rankings,’ but nobody wants to hear about fallacies. There are millions of dollars riding on students’ decisions about where to go to law school, and that creates real institutional pressures.” [Emphasis mine]
Fourth tier garbage pit Touro College Law Center set this lawyer loose on the unsuspecting public, in 2009. Joseph Rakofsky had never tried a case before - so he decided that trying a murder case would be a good way to get his feet wet and gain some legal experience. I know that “law professors” and judges will attempt to put the entire blame on Rakofsky. However, he was “trained” at an ABA-accredited law school by “law professors,” using the archaic Case Method. He was also somehow able to take a capital case, even though he had never conducted a trial.
Now ask yourself, which is worse: manipulating employment figures and committing education malpractice - or reporting these stories, using direct, descriptive language?!
Posted by Nando at 5:05 AM