Tuesday, January 29

Alan Childress makes a good point

Just posted over at Legal Profession Blog in a post titled Value of Litigation: Against Settlement and Mediation;

"...Which brings me to my point about Bernard Goetz. Before his notorious vigilante subway stint, Goetz was once actually mugged. And then rather than watching the perp be prosecuted and brought to justice, he was forced to go through a mediation process with his mugger. It is quite possible that Goetz was not snapped by subway crime or 'kids today,' but rather by a legal system that no longer wants to state right or wrong, or enforce norms, just dispute-resolve.

And let's be sure to do it in an efficient (cheap) manner. (Stoneridge, anyone?) The Goetz example was used well to argue that law and courts have important social value, in many kinds of cases, that go way beyond dispute resolution, or even trendy alternative dispute resolution, in a classic article by Albert W. Alschuler, Mediation with a Mugger: The Shortage of Adjudicative Services and the Need for a Two Tier Trial System in Civil Cases, 99 HARV. L. REV. 1808 (1986). I could not find it free online, so you may have to read this one in your library (or the subway)." [read more]

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