Jim originally wrote this column because, in his words,
"The bastards from the bar make it harder than it needs to be."
His column struck a few chords outside the industry; it was picked
up and read on the most powerful radio station in America
• WGN (720 AM).
42 Reasons Why I Hate Lawyers
by Jim Olsztynski
Wait’ll you hear about the lawyer who billed a client for
the time spent having sex together!
1) Because University of Texas finance professor Stephen
Magee has calculated that each U.S. lawyer drains the economy
of an average of $1 million a year in productivity.
2) Because the U.S. harbored 748,028 creatures of the bar as
of 1990, according to the American Bar Association.
3) Because if Magee is right, those leeches now suck some
three-quarters of a trillion dollars out of our economy annually.
4) Because the emotional turmoil caused by all those lawyers
is every bit as costly as the economic toll.
5) Because the ABA expects there to be, ouch, a million lawyers
6) Because the U.S. had one lawyer for every 350 people, while in
Japan it’s only one for every 9,000.
7) Because most lawyers are very smart people who would have
made superb teachers, engineers, craftsmen, etc., had they only
decided to be productive members of society.
8) Because there is no limit to the lies, deceit and character
assassination that can be rationalized by a lawyer under the
excuse of zealously representing a client’s interests.
9) Because those are the best tactics to use when the client is
10) Because it is possible to use plain English and still achieve
the precision required for unambiguous laws. Lawyers torture our
magnificent language merely to differentiate them from us.
11) Because lawyers casually toss around Latin terms memorized
by rote, but how many have ever learned to decline a Latin noun?
12) Because the bar always lobbies to squash legal reforms.
13) Because the bar always wins.
14) Because when a lawyer achieves success, it usually means
that someone else got shafted.
15) Because most politicians come from the ranks of lawyers.
16) Because lawyers bill by the house and they keep track of the time.
17) Because lawyers appeal to our worst instincts.
18) Because rampant litigation has given rise to de facto tyranny
as people hesitate to speak their minds or engage in innocent activities
that may leave them vulnerable to a lawsuit.
19) Because the ACLU should take an interest in this but instead
spends most of its time these days championing causes that are
ridiculous or offensive.
20) Because what reason is there not to file frivolous lawsuit if
an attorney is willing to work on contingency?
21) Because there are an estimated 6 million laws on the books
in this country — yet only 10 Commandments.
22) Because I’m from Chicago, home of the best justice money can buy.
23) Because the "Operation Greylord" federal investigation of Chicago
courts during the 1980s ended with bribery convictions of dozens of
judges and lawyers.
24) Because anyone familiar with Chicago courts knows that Greylord
nailed only a fraction of the offenders.
25) Because a lawyer in Illinois was found to have billed a divorce
client for time spent having sex with her! (An Appellate Court made
him refund that part of the fee.)
26) Because that same lawyer as later appointed to the Illinois
Supreme Court’s Committee on Character and Fitness!!
27) Because the Client’s Security Fund, set up by the Illinois and
Chicago bar associations to provide up to $10,000 in compensation
to people defrauded by their lawyers, went broke from paying out
28) Because lawyers react like vampires to a crucifix whenever it’s
suggested their profession ought to be policed by outsiders.
29) Because "psychic stress" is one of the hottest new grounds
30) Because these "victimization" gambits have turned us into a
nation of whining neurotics.
31) Because when New York’s CEO Club sponsored its
"Honest Lawyer Contest" last year, no attorneys qualified.
32) Because it was a serious contest.
33) Because they extended the contest deadline from July 1
to October 31, and still couldn’t find a winner!
34) Because lawyer’s professional ethics say nothing about
right and wrong, fairness and unfairness, justice and injustice
— only about striving to win.
35) Because as a result, the best lawyers get hired by the worst
36) Because the legal profession regards such amorality as a
37) Because lawyers are as responsible as anyone for the
worker’s comp problems described on page 48.
38) Because lawyers are responsible as anyone for our nation’s
39) Because malpractice is at least as common in law as in
medicine but far fewer perpetrators ever get called to account.
40) Because I’m sick of seeing vanity license plates with some
variation of LWYR or ATTRNY or CNSLR.
41) Because it takes monumental gall to brag about it.
42) Because I feel guilty about a youthful indiscretion that had
me considering law school after I scored in the 90th percentile
on the LSAT. In the end I decided to earn an honest living.
Do not think for a moment that I have run out of reasons.
I merely ran out of room.
ABSOLUTE POWER CORRUPTS ABSOLUTELY
DON'T VOTE FOR LAWYERS!