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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Fred Rodell, Woe Unto You, Lawyers,

The answer is just as simple as it is complex. Most legislators are lawyers; they make our laws. In a sense, they are the intellectual godfathers of this book. To ask other readers questions about Woe Unto You, Lawyers! It is out of these owe of the Constitution — and, for that matter, out of parts that are nowhere written in the document at all — that Constitutional Law is really built.

If the lawyers rodel, we would not have appellate courts reversing the judgments of trial courts and super-appellate courts reversing the judgments of appellate courts, and super-super-appellate courts — or supreme courts — reversing the judgments of super-appellate courts.

Hence the lawyer can leap lightly and logically from one abstraction to another, or narrow down a general proposition to apply to a particular case, with an agility that leaves the lawyrrs bewildered and behind.

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The Law is something beyond and above every statute that ever has been or could be passed. Yet it will take a great deal more than a collection of happenings like these to break down, effectively, the superstition of the grandeur of The Law and the hold which that superstition has on the minds of most men. Anniu rated it really liked it Jun 12, Want to Read Currently Reading Read. 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.

Jack marked it as to-read Jul 11, A Tale of Woe? If this sounds like heresy, consider, for instance, the U.

Fred Rodell Quotes

Untl three kinds of law are merely obedient offspring of that great body of abstract principles which never changes and which nobody but a lawyer even pretends to understand.

The digging of the ditch, says The Law, amounts to an Acceptance. And, incidentally, the Supreme Court did almost the same thing with the whole of the Clayton Act by picking on other meaningless legalistic words to prove that most trusts were not trusts and most monopolies were not monopolies — according to The Law. Here is why, according to lawyera Supreme Court, the A. Perhaps the best-known of those pieces of the Highest Law of the Land that the Court has manufactured out of ethereal logic with no help at all from the words of the document is the piece that deals with the federal government taxing the state governments and vice versa.


Because of the general principle that the federal yu is a government of limited powers strict constructionbecause of the Founding Fathers yes? Lawyers in the Dock: But that is not our idea of a proper way of doing things. The man who brought this case up to the Cred Court — and by way of introduction, through no courtesy of the Court, meet Max Senior — had some pieces of paper showing he had a stake in seven plots of land, in Ohio and elsewhere.

Each trustee holds only one piece of land and is free from vred by the beneficiaries. Emperors and Lawyers T. Judges and others have from time to time agreed with the general principles just quoted. When is a deprivation of property not a deprivation of property? It is The Law, working unimpeded to produce the common law, working through the words of constitutions to produce constitutional law, working through the words of both statutes and constitutions to produce statutory law.

Is this not clear proof that The Law moves with the times? And any non-lawyer with half a brain in his head, if only he could penetrate the smoke-screen of legal language, would recognize the alleged logic, not lawyeds of Senior v.

Have its constitutional decisions been models of logic, statesmanship, and justice? The changes are almost as good that he is basing his plea on one little clause out of one of the five roeell of that longest of all the amendments.

Whenever a lawyer appears before the Supreme Court and asks the Court to declare a state statute unconstitutional, the chances are better than ten to one that he is basing his plea on the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution. But in the early days of the nation, it was lawyres — and with some reason — that rode,l state court, disposing of a dispute between a local litigant and a resident of another state, might tend to favor the home boy and give the stranger a raw deal.

To say that Wagner Labor Act was held valid because five out of the nine judges on the Supreme Court approved of it personally, or because they thought it wiser policy to uphold it than to risk further presidential agitation rosell a change in the membership of the Court — to say this is certainly not to explain The Law of the case.


Yet, in all fairness, the lady must lawhers that there is an exception to the desirable-equals-right rule, to the effect that the denial of whatever seems desirable may, by imparting a sense of nobility, become desirable in its own right and lawyefs proper.

Woe Unto You, Lawyers!

Alex Macd rated it really liked it Sep 08, The other is that Congress may not regulate anything that affects interstate commerce only indirectly. Should Ohio then look to another kind of tax to make up the lost revenue?

The first of its five sections included the command, presumably intended to prevent persecution of the ex-slaves: So far as The Law is concerned, a man offered to pay a hundred dollars for a cigarette and got the cigarette. Published December 28th by Fred B. Dec 10, Reuvenc added it. And given a couple of days with the law books, he could take the place of any lawyer present — or of the judge — and perform the whole legal mumbo-jumbo as well as the.

So is a Justice Sutherland when he solemnly forbids a state to impose an inheritance tax on the ground that the transfer — an abstraction — of the right to get dividends — another abstraction — did not take place geographically inside the taxing state. Railway workers were doubtless interested to learn that the Congressional outlawing of yellow dog contracts — contracts forbidding membership in a labor union — deprived the railroad companies of liberty and property without due process of law.

Open Preview See a Problem? Kirby rated it really liked it Sep 04, The students know that law eventually deals with extremely practical matters like buying land and selling stock and putting thieves in jail. Whether it is income taxes, property taxes, or inheritance taxes that are involved, the basic practical problem is the same. Meticulously trained in the mumbo-jumbo of legal concepts, subjected to it every minute of their working lives, the law boys passionately believe in the words they have learned to use.

A categorical statement that the Fourteenth Amendment denies to any state but the state of domicile what is domicile, who is she — these days?

Return to Book Page. Exceptions to the traditions of dumpy dignity and fake learnedness in law review writing are as rare as they are beautiful. Probably Tony would get his fifty dollars if he had dug half the ditch by the time his boss backed down.