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I am a lawyer and I also work in the heart of "liberal" legal education. I would like to commend those posts which point out the abuse of class-action lawsuits. However, I would also like to let you know that contacting the firms involved and posting messages on these boards is an exercise in utter futility and here is why:

Trial lawyers cannot, I repeat cannot be made to feel ashamed. They cannot be embarrassed. It is impossible. There is simply too much money involved in the American legal system if you win or shake down corporate America through class action suits, tort liability, bogus discrimination suites etc. You can no more make trial lawyers feel ashamed than you can make David Gardner or Tom Gardner feel ashamed for making honest profit from the stock market (to make sure I am not misinterpreted here, I think Tom and Dave and all the Fools who profit from the stock market have done so honestly by taking a risk and being rewarded). But you have to realize that trial lawyers go after American businesses with the same zeal that Fools do due diligence picking stocks.

By the way, here is another interesting observation from a corporate defense lawyer I heard discussing frivilous suits (in this case he was commenting on the fact that in Alabama (if my memory is correct) the defense could not tell the jury that the plaintiff was drunk when he got injured using the defendant's product). Guess who sits on a lot of these big long jury trials? Who has the time to sit through trials that may last months and years? Unemployed people, the "underprivileged" basically the same type of people who are most likely to want to stick it to big, mean, greedy, corporations.

There is a form of reprimand for frivolous suits called a Rule 11 santion (in the Federal rules of Civil Procedure) which basically state that a lawyer cannot bring a frivolous suit (suing another party) and that by bringing a suit and signing the paper work, they certify that it is made in good faith based on the law, or on a good faith attempt to change, modify or extend the law. They can be sanctioned if the suit is found to be frivolous.

Here is where judicial activist judges come in. They allow frivilous suits to go forward and get to a sympathetic jury (sympathetic to the plaintiffs). Judicial activists want to make up the law by contortionist interpretation of precedent and statutes.
Please go to a website called and sign up for their e-mail alerts. If you think you are cynical about lawyers now, I would love to hear your responses after reading for a few weeks.


A lawyer for tort reform-most probably the only such lawyer at Duke Law School.
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