Remembering TCPaul, 2016-2019

Another Sad Attorney Story

Sort of following up on a post in OT about a seemingly succe cranky05/13/19
But law is prestigious. Do you really want to be a cop or te wearyattorney05/14/19
The economy is measured by how the best people are doing. Th superttthero05/14/19
I don’t think comparing people that can get into a top 100 wearyattorney05/14/19
"the economy is doing better than it has in 50 years" You dingbat05/14/19
That isn’t the only indicator that matters. The combinati wearyattorney05/14/19
What's the effective wage increase for the bottom 90% of US taxamnesty05/14/19
The last time I checked, real wages are back to 1978 (for ma imoothereforeim05/14/19
TITCR. Capital flows to China where labor is extremely chea wearyattorney05/14/19
Lowest 25 percent saw a 4.4 percent increase and the average wearyattorney05/14/19
Fake news ain't a real source. If that's the best they can c taxamnesty05/14/19
US worker is screwed because their is a labor surplus impose wearyattorney05/14/19
But it isn't. The EU and japan, while certainly not PERFECT, dopesmokeresquire05/14/19
Healthcare is a legitimate problem in this country that is d wearyattorney05/14/19
Good post. Good put. Every cocky college student who thinks cranky05/14/19
Boomer culture. The TV and other media tells the kid la wearyattorney05/14/19
To be fair at worst only about half of the lives are destroy taxamnesty05/14/19
Lol, I feel you. But some lemmings actually take that view wearyattorney05/14/19
In case someone missed this, I am just going to copy it belo heythere05/14/19
I am going to write a book soon about how to become an econo whiteguyinchina05/14/19
How can a US-trained lawyer who doesn't speak Korean earn $7 blackholelaw05/14/19
How would Americans with advanced degrees make $75,000 in Se brassica705/14/19
I vaguely remember somebody posting about a JD getting a uni cranky05/14/19

cranky (May 13, 2019 - 11:52 pm)

Sort of following up on a post in OT about a seemingly successful older attorney who took a gov't attorney job that pays $77k. So on a listserve, I noticed an older attorney added another office location in the same city where my office is located. Being nosy and on the lookout for office space, I googled the guy's address, and it turns out he's using his home address. Additionally, the home is a run down little dump in the poor part of town, and he's not even the owner. I don't know what law school this person went to because he doesn't have a website. It's sad because I have heard of him and didn't realize that he too must be one of those older struggling solos who's never going to be able to retire.

Then out of more curiosity, I googled a young attorney who had asked to intern with me a few years ago. He found a job with a solo, but the solo died recently. The young atty is probably doing doc review or something non-law related now.

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wearyattorney (May 14, 2019 - 12:16 am)

But law is prestigious. Do you really want to be a cop or teacher making six figures with rock solid job security and retirement options or do you want to be a prestigious person with a law degree?

Also, as you know, the correct way to compare the merits of the legal profession in relation to other professions is to compare a 50 year old biglaw equity partner in New York City to a 22 year old fine arts teacher in Tulsa Oklahoma.

Your solos are an abberation. It’s much, much easier to gain admission to a reputable law school, graduate top of the class at said law school, obtain biglaw, and maintain biglaw for a decade, than it is to become a teacher in NYC, LA, Boston, Jersey or Chicago. The stats say so.

So please, let’s not compare apples to apples here, I want to compare apples to mangos.****


**** Law school professors gotta get paid yo!!!!! Get da money, get da money, get da money!!!!

On a serious note:

The economy is doing better than it has in 50 years, and Unemployment is at its lowest in 40 years. Despite this, the legal profession isn’t merely stating stagnant, it’s shrinking. It’s shrinking and there is still an over supply of about 10-15 thousand graduates a year. Automation, machine learning, and accelerated outsourcing are around the corner. We are also very overdue for a recession. It is going to be absolutely biblical when the recession happens.

I feel absolutely zero sympathy for anyone whose family does not have money and yet chooses to attend given current circumstances, but I am absolutely insatiably curious as to what is going to happen when the sh**t really hits the fan.

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superttthero (May 14, 2019 - 10:28 am)

The economy is measured by how the best people are doing. The job market for employees is terrible.

That our GDP is going up means little to the bottom 50% when their jobs are increasingly outsourced, automated and pay has been stagnant.

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wearyattorney (May 14, 2019 - 12:56 pm)

I don’t think comparing people that can get into a top 100 law school, pass the bar, and work 60-80 hours a week for extended period of time to the bottom 50 percent of wage earners is a fair comparison.

But to your point, the economy is working for people with the correct skill sets, and law doesn’t fit that bill anymore.

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dingbat (May 14, 2019 - 1:02 pm)

"the economy is doing better than it has in 50 years"

You know nothing. GDP Growth isn't even at the highest it's been in the last 20 years.

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wearyattorney (May 14, 2019 - 1:09 pm)

That isn’t the only indicator that matters. The combination of GDP, unemployment and wage increases is the best it’s been in decades. It’s far from perfect, but still very good.

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taxamnesty (May 14, 2019 - 3:18 pm)

What's the effective wage increase for the bottom 90% of US income earners?

Asking for a friend.

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imoothereforeim (May 14, 2019 - 3:28 pm)

The last time I checked, real wages are back to 1978 (for males, female wages are not good indicator due to social changes).

So why? I believe rise of China is one big factor. China is sucking in incredible amounts of capitals in the last few decades. Real wages in China rocketed. The rest of the world, not so much.

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wearyattorney (May 14, 2019 - 3:30 pm)

TITCR. Capital flows to China where labor is extremely cheap.

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wearyattorney (May 14, 2019 - 3:29 pm)

Lowest 25 percent saw a 4.4 percent increase and the average is 3.3 percent.

https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.nytimes.com/2019/05/02/business/economy/wage-growth-economy.amp.html

Not bad considering what’s been going on for the last 35 years.

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taxamnesty (May 14, 2019 - 3:36 pm)

Fake news ain't a real source. If that's the best they can come up with after taking artistic liberty with the numbers, you know the US worker is screwed.

Compares those wage gains with cost of housing, education, and healthcare.

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wearyattorney (May 14, 2019 - 4:25 pm)

US worker is screwed because their is a labor surplus imposed on the society by the richest of the rich. However, reducing access to slave labor (tariffs and illegal immigration) can help alleviate the problem (and that’s partially why wages are doing better than ever, even though that isn’t saying much).

The cost of housing is increasing because people with money from overseas, that are benefiting from outsourcing, are inflating asset prices throughout the country. It’s a double and triple whammy: American worker sees his salary go down because he has to compete with foreigners with no rights whatsoever, the American worker has to pay the taxes to subsidize the military complex that provides the stability required for this kind of capitalism to be practiced globally, and housing costs go up because the foreign owners of the overseas slave operations buy housing here as a form of asset insurance.

Education costs too much because the government guarantees payment irrespective of outcome, so the schools can keep increasing tuition without consequence. No matter what solution you impose, unless some kind of price control is imposed, the costs of education can never decrease.

Healthcare is the most complicated one, but it’s a combination of bearing the costs of innovation for the whole planet, boomers consuming immense resources, the most protective trade association in the world inflating costs (AMA), price gouging, illegal immigrants using emergency room services for free, etc. Healthcare is the toughest one to solve.

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dopesmokeresquire (May 14, 2019 - 4:40 pm)

But it isn't. The EU and japan, while certainly not PERFECT, are no where near the price gouging CFs that the US health insurance scam is.

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wearyattorney (May 14, 2019 - 5:08 pm)

Healthcare is a legitimate problem in this country that is distinct (but significantly compounds the maleffects) from the overall issue of economic decline. I agree. I’m just saying it isn’t a simple issue of giving the government control. Anything the government takes control of is regulatory captured very rapidly. That’s why education is so expensive.

Housing is very much linked to the factors that have caused economic decline though.

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cranky (May 14, 2019 - 12:25 pm)

Good post. Good put. Every cocky college student who thinks they want to go to law school because they are good at arguing needs to read this.

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wearyattorney (May 14, 2019 - 12:43 pm)

Boomer culture.

The TV and other media tells the kid law is stable and prestigious. That stereotype developed under a very specific economic paradigm, ie the post WWII era that the boomers enjoyed. That era is over (it’s been over). Nevertheless, the cultural stereotypes associated with that era are going to take a very long time to go by the waste side.

Kid comes here, reads the real deal, goes home, and tells parents. Parents tell the kid he or she is an idiot, and everyone knows lawyers make money, look at “Suits.” Kid brushes off the rational advice offered here and destroys his or her life.

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taxamnesty (May 14, 2019 - 12:51 pm)

To be fair at worst only about half of the lives are destroyed... No need to be hyperbolic.

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wearyattorney (May 14, 2019 - 1:08 pm)

Lol, I feel you. But some lemmings actually take that view quite seriously, and assume they won’t be the bottom half.

It depends on the definition of “destroyed” though, as half are completely ruined.

But I doubt if even five percent are better off but for going to law school. The law schools thrive on making asymmetric comparisons, eg compare a biglaw associate to someone making fries at McDonalds, eg using stats that show less people (percentage wise) pass the NYC sanitation exam than get admitted to Harvard (without assessing the quality of applicants in both scenarios).

I only know of two specific types of people that are better off by going to law school than not: law school professors and rich kids that want a prestigious credential to establish self worth.

Under no other circumstance, when accounting for individual ability and interests, is law ever worth it.

If you think you can make it in biglaw (or if you do make it in biglaw) you would have made it in investment banking and the money is better. (The work environment is horrible in both instances).

If you want to serve the public, being a teacher in the blue states pays more and has a better quality of life than being a Public defender or prosecutor.

If you are a Jock type thinking of JAG, police work pays more in the rich cities, is more interesting and has infinitely better retirement benefits.

If you are truly altruistic and want to save people, social workers in major metropolitan areas do more for poor people than any “save the dolphins”organization can dream of.

It makes no sense under any circumstance except if you want to teach law and/or you have the necessities of life covered and have something to prove.

The scam is going to roll on though until the next recession. When the next recession happens though, I have to believe it’s going to be over. If it’s this bad now, it’s going to be biblical then.

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heythere (May 14, 2019 - 5:06 pm)

In case someone missed this, I am just going to copy it below.

"On a serious note:

The economy is doing better than it has in 50 years, and Unemployment is at its lowest in 40 years. Despite this, the legal profession isn’t merely stating stagnant, it’s shrinking. It’s shrinking and there is still an over supply of about 10-15 thousand graduates a year. Automation, machine learning, and accelerated outsourcing are around the corner. We are also very overdue for a recession. It is going to be absolutely biblical when the recession happens.

I feel absolutely zero sympathy for anyone whose family does not have money and yet chooses to attend given current circumstances, but I am absolutely insatiably curious as to what is going to happen when the sh**t really hits the fan."

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whiteguyinchina (May 14, 2019 - 4:45 am)

I am going to write a book soon about how to become an economic immigrant.

it's really close now. adjunct professors, lawyers, other types of PhDs. basically can earn 75k living in Seoul with housing covered and tax free or earn 65k living in NYC.

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blackholelaw (May 14, 2019 - 8:40 am)

How can a US-trained lawyer who doesn't speak Korean earn $75k in Seoul as an attorney? Sure there are some American companies there, but I imagine they are few and far between and would prefer bilingual people.

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brassica7 (May 14, 2019 - 8:41 am)

How would Americans with advanced degrees make $75,000 in Seoul? Would this be teaching English? $75,000 seems really high for that type of work, but I’m having trouble imagining what else an English-only speaker would do there.

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cranky (May 14, 2019 - 12:27 pm)

I vaguely remember somebody posting about a JD getting a university position in Asia teaching legal studies or something. That kind of job is pretty rare. About as rare as becoming general counsel at a university making $450,000 a year.

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