Quantcast
Home / Commentary / Blogs / THE DARK SIDE: Everything about practicing law I learned from Ecclesiastes

THE DARK SIDE: Everything about practicing law I learned from Ecclesiastes

Practicing law well is a lot like living a well-lived life.

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.”

There is a time to file a lawsuit, and a time to settle, a time to send dunning letters, and a time to profit from those letters. A time to send men to the electric chair, and a time to forgive, a time to golf, and a time to put in 80-hour work weeks;

A time to weep, and a time to laugh, a time to mourn, and a time to dance;

A time to get rid of lousy clients, and a time to market for new clients, a time to hit up old clients for new business, and a time to send other old clients out the door;

A time to bill, and a time to not bill, a time to demand another check, and a time to say “We’re cool”;

A time to appeal, and a time to pay damages, a time to object, and a time to claim plain error;

A time for litigation, and a time for peace.

There’s really only one verse in Ecclesiastes 3 that doesn’t fit: “A time to love, and a time to hate.”

Seriously, what are you supposed to substitute for that? A time to represent your client zealously, and a time to steal from your client?

A time to represent your client zealously, and a time to sell him out for the benefit of another client?

A time to represent your client zealously, and a time to disclose his confidences?

No. None of those work.

There is never a legitimate excuse to steal from a client. Ergo, there is never a legitimate excuse to hate.

Yes, I know. This is poor logic. But it worked for Chief Justice Roberts in the Obamacare decision, so why should I be constrained by the strict rules of logic?

Furthermore, in contrast to the sick and evil result reached via the sophistry employed by the majority in that case, I’ve actually reached the right result here.

There is never a time for hate. Ever.

One comment

  1. I totally agree that the Chief Justice and the “conservative” majority’s exercised the poorest of logic in concluding that the freeloader tax imposed on those who benefit from our health care system but refuse to pay their fair share for it is not supported by the Commerce Clause. I am equally appalled at the “sick and evil result reached via the sophistry employed by the majority” in reach that repulsive dicta. Luckily for all of us, a different majority exercised perfect logic in upholding most of the law on other grounds despite that brief escape from reality by Chief Justice Roberts and the other four.

    I do disagree with one assertion, and that is that there is a time for state sanctioned murder in the form of sending someone to the electric chair. With very few exceptions, none involving capital punishment, the act of intentionally taking the life of another human being when not necessary to the defense of one’s self or others cannot be justified merely because committed by a group rather than an individual.

Leave a Comment