"An incompetent lawyer can delay a trial for months or years. A competent lawyer can delay one even longer."
"Most lawyers who win a case advise their clients, "We have won," and when justice has frowned upon their cause ... "You have lost."
"Possession isn't nine-tenths of the law. It's nine-tenths of the problem."
"Horse sense is the thing a horse has which keeps it from betting on people."
W. C. Fields
"If there's a will, prosperity can't be far behind."
W. C. Fields
"A lean compromise is better than a fat lawsuit."
"Compromise is the best and cheapest lawyer."
Robert Louis Stevenson
"A successful lawsuit is the one worn by a policeman."
"Always forgive your enemies; nothing annoys them so much."
"Anyone who lives within their means suffers from a lack of imagination."
"Arguments are to be avoided; they are always vulgar and often convincing."
"It is always a silly thing to give advice, but to give good advice is fatal."
"One can survive everything, nowadays, except death, and live down everything except a good reputation."
"One should always play fairly when one has the winning cards."
"The only thing to do with good advice is pass it on. It is never any use to oneself."
"I can resist anything but temptation."
"A man cannot be too careful in the choice of his enemies."
Top Ten Quotes from US Judges:
10. Dragnet Roberts
North Philly, May 4, 2001. Officer Sean Devlin, Narcotics Strike Force, was working the morning shift. Undercover surveillance. The neighborhood? Tough as a three dollar steak. Devlin knew. Five years on the beat, nine months with the Strike Force. He’d made fifteen, twenty drug busts in the neighborhood.
- Chief Justice Roberts of the Supreme Court, dissent from a denial of certiorari in a case about probable cause
9. Eminem’s Protégé
Any reasonable person could clearly see /
That the lyrics could only be hyperbole
It is therefore this Court’s ultimate position /
That Eminem is entitled to summary disposition
- Judge Deborah Servitto of Michigan, in an order dismissing a lawsuit against Eminem.
8. The Book of the Byrds
“To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;” a time to purchase fertilizer, and a time to take a deduction for that which is purchased.
- Judge Goldberg in Schenk v. Commissioner, 686 F.2d 315 (5th Cir. 1982), a case about fertilizer and tax deductions
7. Duck in a Truck
The defendant herein is a truck,
The vehicle is a pick-up,
Alleged by a fed
To be found in a bed
Of marijuana, caught in the muck.
- District Judge Wangelin in United States v. One 1976 Ford F-150 Pickup, 599 F. Supp. 818 (E.D. Mo. 1984)
6. The Oldest Pancake
In a big family the first child is kind of like the first pancake. If it’s not perfect, that’s okay, there are a lot more coming along.
- U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia
From the perspective of a person in the position of plaintiff herein, a very practical problem arises with respect to the discovery of a paranormal phenomenon: “Who you gonna’ call?”
- Stambovsky v. Ackley, 169 A.D.2d 254 (N.Y. App. Div. 1991)
4. Judicial Spanking #1
Manifestly, any person with even a correspondence-course level understanding of federal practice and procedure would recognize that Defendant’s Motion is patently insipid, ludicrous and utterly and unequivocally without any merit whatsoever…. Defendant’s obnoxiously ancient, boilerplate, inane Motion is emphatically DENIED. Moreover, Defendant’s present counsel-of-record, Mr. [redacted] is determined to be disqualified for cause from this action for submitting this asinine tripe.
- Labor Force, Inc. v. Jacintoport Corp. et al.
3. Rules of Interpretation
What is a moderate interpretation of the text? Halfway between what it really means and what you’d like it to mean?
- U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia
2. Posner’s Pigs
Judges are not like pigs, hunting for truffles buried in briefs.
- Justice Posner, United States v. Dunkel, 927 F.2d 955, 956 (7th Cir. 1991)
1. Judicial Spanking #2
The entire opinion for Bradshaw v. Unity Marine Corp. Here’s an excerpt: “Before proceeding further, the Court notes that this case involves two extremely likable lawyers, who have together delivered some of the most amateurish pleadings ever to cross the hallowed causeway into Galveston, an effort which leads the Court to surmise but one plausible explanation. Both attorneys have obviously entered into a secret pact – complete with hats, handshakes, and cryptic words – to draft their pleadings entirely in crayon on the back sides of gravy-stained paper place mats, in the hope that the Court would be so charmed by their child-like efforts that their utter dearth of legal authorities in their briefing would go unnoticed.
- Bradshaw v. Unity Marine Corp, 147 F.Supp.2d 668
Epilogue: United States District Judge Samuel B. Kent, who authored the scathing opinion in Bradshaw v. Unity Marine Corp, was later accused of sexually assaulting two women on his staff. He pled guilty to one count of obstruction of justice in a plea bargain with prosecutors and was sentenced to almost three years in prison.
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