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Senate investigators have obtained information indicating lenders may have told a borrower's spouse that the borrower would go to jail if he did not pay, which is "a blatantly false assertion," said Kennedy, a Massachusetts Democrat. Investigators are also looking into whether lenders have refused to negotiate with borrowers on payment deferment, called borrowers on the job after being told to stop, harassed borrowers' neighbors, family and co-workers and used profane language to intimidate borrowers.

I like best the "profane language" part! ;)


Law school is nothing like high school.


Current Law Students / Re: poor lawyers
« on: May 03, 2007, 10:32:15 PM »

Exactly, it's not only money that people who go to law school are after; it's also about being considered a "learned," "respectable" person -- as attorneys are perceived to be.

Images of legal practice are too often coloured by popular presentations of the profession in movies and by sensational press coverage of unusual court proceedings. However, you are better off clearing away the glamour and take a close look at the daily life of practicing attorneys.

People should not be willfully blind to the central fact of law school: it is a trade school, and the trade itself can be esoteric, dull and of questionable utility. Study of law is like doing a very large Sunday crossword for 3 years straight. What you do in law school is read hundreds and hundreds of cases learning that judges write remarkably poorly. In most cases, judges need give little more than a yes or no answer, but they devote thousands of words in each instance trying to sound reasonable and consistent. From all their verbiage, you are supposed to glean a pattern and pretend it constitutes a set of legal rules. What law professors do is reveal the twisted reasoning employed by all judges.

One "appeal" of this "mode of pedagogy" is that students are invited to feel superior to the nation's jurists, who are made to seem at best ignorant buffoons and at worst heartless manipulators of doctrine. Yet, surprisingly law students learn a lot about the premises and methodology of the law by reading and discussing cases. Unfortunately, this knowledge is not the kind of truth that sets you free, but rather it is the kind that makes you cynical.

On the other hand, practicing law in a corporate setting is boring and requires excessively long hours. If people knew what work is like in big city firms, they would never do it. It is basically a "sweatshop," and all you do is get a copy of an old document and you fill in the blanks -- there's a lack of intellectual stimulation to the extent that you just don't enjoy it. Nonetheless, lawyers pursue this more lucrative career track because of the huge debt that many young people take on while attending law school. Wall Street lawyers make the most money, but they appear to get the least satisfaction out of their jobs. They work extremely long days and many weekends, billing clients for 2,000 to 2,500 hours of work a year, and find they are given little responsibility initially. On the other hand, young prosecutors, law clerks, and public-interest lawyers seem to take real pride in what they are doing and get great satisfaction from their jobs. The problem, of course, with these latter positions is that the attorney will be earning a fraction of what his counterpart may be making in the less satisfying, more stressful, and less stimulating alternative.

While there may be a significant number of law school graduates flourishing in other careers, the ugly truth is that almost everyone who goes to law school becomes a lawyer; because law school teaches you a particular trade, you're more likely to practice it. Although in some cases law school may help you write about the law and some aspects of policy, it does not mean that you can do anything with a law degree; rather, it means that some people can find gainful employment as writers despite the careful attention of a battery of professionals bent on ruining your prose (Developing writing skills as a prerequisite to become an attoney unfortunately means that law school will teach you an essentially unreadable kind of prose). If you want to do something else you should do something else.

Lawyers do not make that much money. The funny thing is that lawyers don't make much compared to investment bankers, for example. And the salaries of associates carry fringe benefits like constant pressure and slim chances of becoming a partner in the firm. The net result may be not having enough time to spend the money you make and being miserable in the process. Consider also that it's very hard to land such a high paying job at a time when there are unemployed and underemployed lawyers all over the place, and plenty are making perfectly ordinary salaries.

Current Law Students / Re: Queen Visits the Colonies
« on: May 03, 2007, 10:00:13 PM »

Did you see today the female private part (Queen of England) meet with survivors of the massacre at Virginia Tech?

Me too hates English! In fact, most of the things that are wrong with America are so because of the English heritage. Man, English people are weird, eccentric, opinionated, boisterous. The English accent is funny and their pronunciation really sucks.

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