Non-Producers

The Wall Street Journal Law Blog–a favorite–has a story titled Scalia: ‘We Are Devoting Too Many of Our Best Minds to’ Lawyering.  Drawn from interviews C-SPAN conducted with the Justices earlier this year.  Responding to a question about the quality of lawyers arguing before the Supreme Court Scalia said

I used to be disappointed that so many of the best minds in the country were being devoted to this enterprise . . . [L]awyers, after all, don’t produce anything. They enable other people to produce and to go on with their lives efficiently and in an atmosphere of freedom. That’s important, but it doesn’t put food on the table and there have to be other people who are doing that. And I worry that we are devoting too many of our very best minds to this enterprise . . .

For once I agree with Justice Scalia.  If you are considering law school yet dream of starting a business, writing a screenplay, renovating apartment buildings, or anything else that would define you as the client, not the lawyer, put law school on hold.  It will always be an option.  Make something. Be productive.

3 thoughts on “Non-Producers”

  1. I probably agree that too many students choose law school, and many times for the wrong reason, but I don't agree that "non-production" is necessarily a negative. Doctors don't produce anything either, nor do financial planners or any sort of law enforcement officer. These fields, and others, offer valuable services. Lawyers make clients whole, either financially or otherwise; doctors heal patients, enabling them to continue contributing to society; law enforcement maintains the safety of communities, enabling citizens to work in peace. Some of the world's most prosperous nations are substantially service-based economies. Scalia's probably just upset that his opinions are rarely taken seriously anymore.

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