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Messages - Butters Stotch

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41
But more education and extra skill sets are NEVER a bad idea.
Of course it can be a bad idea, you idiot. If the education doesn't improve your earning power, then you shouldn't be paying $35,000 a year for it.

So little value in the Aristotelian concept of the contemplative life, my little homoerotic gadget?

So little inherent respect for the very personal form of self-actualization that is learning for its own sake?

A thing is only worth what is willing to pay for it. If I decide that 35k in education makes me happy, it should most certainly be available.

Sorry you get to only make the value calls for yourself. But free will is kinda like the uglier, lesser known unglamorous step-cousin of free enterprise. Like it or not, it's kinda not going anywhere.

I agree with you that it's a free country and one is free to be fiscally irresponsible.  However, Sallie Mae doesn't give a $#@! about "contemplative life" or "self actualization."  She wants your $1100 monthly payment.

And while I agree that a great many law schools are overpriced I do not agree that the ABA should be responsible for that. If one seeks to become a prudent professional whose trade is being logical and reasonable then I'd consider the choice of how much you pay for what education to be a better predictor of success than the LSAT. The whole idea that a law school's currency is employment is ridiculous. Not even Kelly servies can guarentee job placement. Law schools deal in credentialing and professional education. That's it. Anything else assigned to it is ridiculous. And so, too, are the people who go into this contract without a clear understanding of what is being sold.

Why are we so upset that people enjoy overpaying? If nothing else it makes more room for people like myself. Why do I care if some insane percentage of grads are too undertrained and overindulged to actually figure out how to hustle for a damn job? Good riddance, thin the herd, natural selection, yadda, yadda, yadda.

A couple of points here:

1.  I don't think anyone is seriously suggesting that the ABA should be in charge of setting and maintaining tuition levels at individual schools.  I am certainly no such advocate.  What I WOULD like to see, however, is the ABA step in and actually perform a function which, in my mind, is what such an organization exists for (or should exist for)...namely, crack down on the notorious TTT practice of taking students' money during their 1L year and then unceremoniously kicking them out the door, WITH PASSING GRADES mind you, after 1L simply because said TTT's are concerned about their bar-passage rates.  Not only is that immoral, it is just plain unethical.  It damn well ought to be illegal, or at least actionable, if the school fails to inform the hapless student beforehand that this is a common practice.

2.  I agree with the notion that a degree is "worth" whatever a prospective student is willing to pay for it, and not a penny less.  I also agree with your take that, if a person finds fulfillment in pursuing a $150k degree from a T4 school, he/she should be allowed to do so, and such a degree WOULD be worth that much from that student's standpoint.  HOWEVER, as others have stated, that still doesn't necessarily make it a wise FINANCIAL investment on the part of the student, just as it doesn't mean that someone who happens to point out this obviousness is necessarily rejecting the concepts of self-actualization and the contemplative life.

I've been one of wiimote's biggest critics on this board, but the little troll has a point.  The more stories I read like the one in the original post, and the more people with whom I speak who are struggling every day with crushing debt while being unable to find even decent legal work, the more convinced I am that the wiimote's and SOB's of the world are onto something, and their points should at least be considered by the uninformed pre-1L. 

The fact that many schools are actively taking steps to muddy the waters and game their employment numbers to make the reality look less gloomy is a huge indictment on these schools.  It is a shame that the legal process cannot, or will not, correct this...

42
Regarding schools cutting out students.

Why doesn't this happen during admissions?  Why would you admit someone only to kick him out?  That makes no sense.  The ABA needs to be tougher in its accreditation standards because they've doomed a lot of schools and their students to failure.  The new bar passage requirements are a good first step, so long as they are accompanied by automatic revocation of ABA status for schools who are found to even remotely be engaging in the practice of admitting students for tuition and then expelling over 10% of them.  This would ensure the right students are admitted, and prevent the type of practices that are currently emanating in a lot of T4 schools. 

I like all of this.  I would add an additional wrinkle:  ALL "character & fitness" determinations should be done BEFORE one may enter law school.  This would cut out the BS you hear about in states like GA and FL, where people go through 3 years of law school only to be told after sitting for the bar exam that they can't get a license because they forgot to disclose some dip sh*t traffic ticket from 15 years prior.  I think that med schools and even many nursing programs require this before a student may enroll.

43
UPDATE:  Scott Bullock, the guy who was quoted by and whose picture appeared in the WSJ article has announced that he is leaving the law...to become an electrician!   :o

http://blogs.wsj.com/law/

Quote
Leaving the Law To Become a Electrician
Posted by Amir Efrati

In the aftermath of Monday’s WSJ Page-One story about the dark side of the legal job market, we received scores of emails from struggling lawyers who say they plan to leave the legal profession or have already done so.

We also learned that the first lawyer quoted in the story, Seton Hall grad Scott Bullock, has also jumped ship. This week he quit his job at Mirman, Markovits & Landau and will start working for a former high-school friend who is an electrician. Bullock, whose dot-drawing also appeared on Page One, had recently interviewed with another personal-injury firm but learned Friday that he didn’t get the job.

Bullock, 30 years old, says he’ll be paid the same as his lawyer job, about $50,000. Though he says he’ll never join a firm again, he left open the possibility of doing some personal-injury cases on the side. “I’d rather spend one day as a lion than a lifetime as a lamb,” he said of his decision. “Life is just too short to waste it on such a miserable slog.”

44
What gets me is the raping and pillaging of the citrus groves. Why oh WHY can't a Yankee learn to pick only those fruit which are ripe? What is SO difficult about that?


IIRC, snowbirds with second homes here in FL benefit from the same homestead exemption as first time buyers get. 

Also, citrus canker has done more to wipe out the FL citrus crop than snowbirds. 

The freeze of '89 was the first major kick-start to the decline of the annual FL citrus crop.

Remember when the 'Citrus Tower' in Clermont was actually surrounded by orange groves? Ahh the good old days.
  :D Yeah I used to live in Orlando!  I think the plan is to completely pave over Clermont and pretend there were never any oranges there.

45
I don't think I'm following a crucial part of the discussion. How do schools game their salary statistics?

Thanks to whoever replies.

No oversight.

Surveys are conducted by the schools, so schools can report whatever they'd like to report.  Many have rather low response rates.  Should raise questions.   :)

I figured it was just low-report issues, but wasn't sure if it was more than that. I think most of the schools I am looking at have much more than 40% reporting (I picked 40% because a similar number was in the WSJ article), but I'm going to check now to ease my mind.

Not only is the rate of reporting important, but it is probably even MORE important to remember that salaries on the low end are less likely to be reported.  This theory would indicate that pretty much any number you read is going to be high, even if the amount isn't statistically significant...

46
I don't think I'm following a crucial part of the discussion. How do schools game their salary statistics?

Thanks to whoever replies.

No oversight.



I think this should raise more flags than anything.

What is to stop them from simply tossing a negative response into the nearest trash can, really?

47
I think law schools should start flunking people out of the bottom quarter of law school classes.

1) it would eliminate a significant portion of an oversaturated market.   
2) it would prevent people who have already sunk tens of thousands of dollars into a degree from feeling as if they have to sink tens of thousands more to get the degree.
3) it would ensure that only the better students would be allowed to graduate and take the bar.
4) it would encourage students to maintain high standards and work hard.

St Thomas in Miami is being sued over this very thing. 

I agree with the kid who's suing, though his case probably has no chance.  He passed EVERY 1L course, and yet he can't continue and get his degree?  Why not?  And why was he not warned of this before entering the 1L class? 

I think schools who do this (and many TTTT's do it) should be required to EXPLICITLY state that they flunk out the bottom 25%, even if they pass every course.  THAT might take care of the problem.

Then again, that would mean that the school might not get to keep that free money they get from the hapless victims of the curve...

48
No, Mr. President, you do not have the right to search someone's private property without probable cause:

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070926/ap_on_re_us/patriot_act_lawsuit


49
General Off-Topic Board / Governor George W. Bush on Clinton & Bosnia
« on: September 26, 2007, 11:34:39 PM »
"Victory means exit strategy, and it's important for the President to explain to us what the exit strategy is."-- Governor George W. Bush (R)-TX

Oh dear lord...

 :D :D :D

http://www.theyoungturks.com/story/2007/4/25/7588/86433

50
What gets me is the raping and pillaging of the citrus groves. Why oh WHY can't a Yankee learn to pick only those fruit which are ripe? What is SO difficult about that?


IIRC, snowbirds with second homes here in FL benefit from the same homestead exemption as first time buyers get. 

Also, citrus canker has done more to wipe out the FL citrus crop than snowbirds. 

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