9 Then came “Woe Unto You,. Lawyers!”. Rodell knew that it would make every lawyer bristle or snort. ‘By FRED RODELL, Professor of Law, Yale University. Here’s a book you don’t have to buy; the entire text is here, in glorious HTML. It’s Fred Rodell’s “lusty, gusty attack on ‘The Law’ as a curious. This Book Reviews is brought to you for free and open access by the College of Law at Via Sapientiae. It has been accepted for Leo Herzel, Rodell: Woe unto You, Lawyers!, 7 DePaul L. Rev. () You, Lawyers! By FRED RODELL.

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Women who worked in Washington, D. If constitutions and statutes were all written in ordinary English and if the lawyer-judges were ousted from their decision-making seats, the practicing tred would soon automatically disappear.

It is permanent and changeless — which means that it is not of this earth. The field of Law known as Contracts is one of the most settled, most venerable, and least politically complicated fields of Law.

Braden but of almost any Supreme Court case your could name, as nothing more nor less than an intellectual fraud.

You can probe the words of that legal explanation to their depths and bolster them with other legal propositions dating back one hundred and fifty years and they will still mean, for all practical purposes, exactly nothing.

Woe Unto You, Lawyers!

Only The Law resists and resents the notion that it should ever change its antiquated ways to meet the challenge of rodel changing world. The lawyer-judges alone turn out each year hundreds upon rfed of books full of nothing but refinements of The Law and its principles.

The point is that the so-called concept of Consideration is both meaningless and useless until you know every one of the countless fact situations about which courts have said: Practically all the cases that reach the Supreme Court — and reaching the Supreme Court often means going through three or four lower courts in turn, over a period of years ungo are of one of three kinds.

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And incidentally, the idea that this might not be any business of ours at all is beneath serious consideration.

It may be that they use hazy legal words or it may be that the words they use, though fairly clear at the time of writing, have since acquired a nebulous quality through constant legal mastication of their meaning. Nor is it only the plaint, ordinary lawyers who take their funny words and their word-made abstractions seriously. Jack rdoell it as to-read Jul 11, These are the words of the late Justice Holmes: Yet every lawyer purports to be able to understand and interpret a large part of that presence for the benefit of those who are not lawyers — at a price.

By the use of these concepts, the lawyers bewilder the non-legal world and, too often, themselves, into supposing The Law and its rulings are scientific, logical, foreordained.

Michael Thaler – unknown. Its decisions are supposed to be the wisest, the most enlightened. It reveals the Court at its most legalistic, lawyegs most vacuous, its most unsubstantial — though for that purpose any one of a thousand cases might have served equally well. For all The Law knows, the two men may have been lost in the middle of a desert and the cigarette their last smoke, or the cigarette may have belonged to Franklin Roosevelt or may have been autographed by Babe Ruth.

Consecrated fanatics are always more dangerous than conscious villains.

Woe Unto You, Lawyers! by Fred Rodell

But Chief Justice Taft and his court of lawyers had the last word. The sole reference to these civil liberties in the whole Constitution is in the First Amendment.

And it was on the basis of those two paragraphs, as expressing a relevant general principle, that the Supreme Court of a generation later concluded that Max Senior didin a sense, own land, and so could not be taxed by the state of Ohio. And when the judge in turn packs his opinions with such phrases, the lawyers who read those opinions get, if nothing more, a vague sense of trading-familiar-ground.

Rodelk fraud may have been more obvious in Senior v. It should not, however, require a revolution to rid society of lawyer-control.

The commonest and, by and large, the most effective dodge suggested and used was for the rich man to put his property in trust — which of course only meant giving the property to someone else to keep for him by the use of the proper legal rigmarole — and still to keep several strings on the property himself.


What oyu said by the five or six or seven or eight justices who voted the other way is The Law. Of course, the two principles might occasionally seem to conflict in their application to a specific fact dred, but that would be of minor importance since both, in the abstract, would be entirely valid lergal principles.

But there is nothing ffed the Constitution that forbids a state to do that if it wants to. Lwayers other is that Congress may not regulate anything that affects interstate commerce only indirectly. Not that it deals, as do medicine and mechanical engineering, with physical phenomena and instruments which need special words to describe them simply because there are no other words.

There has to be Consideration, as well as Offer and Acceptance and a number of other solemn-spoken legalisms, before a Contract is good in the eyes of The Law. Browse quotes by subject Browse quotes by author.

There is, moreover, a clear danger in leaving the protection of civil liberties against state infringement to the whims and general principles and legal logic of the Supreme Court — instead of writing into the Constitution, as should have been done long ago, a broad and definite protection of those liberties against all infringement.

It developed, as it always does, that there were sub-principles. And the whole idea of taking two promises, made by separate people to a third person, and calling one of them Consideration for the other sounds, of course, utterly fantastic. Lawyesr Law, remember, is that before you have a Contract, you have to have not an offer, not even a definite offer, but a legal Offer.