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July 08, 2011


Darren McKinney

Ms. Fein,

With all due respect, "[a]s a fan of lawyers," you must be certifiably insane.

And Mr. Petersen,

Why conflate crookedly parasitic personal injury lawyers with those you reference as "unindicted banksters"?

There are finite sets of both bankers and personal injury lawyers who work to fraudulently enrich themselves at the expense of our economy and the public's respect for the rule of law. But the existence of one set of scumbags doesn't negate that of the other. Besides, there is no shortage of so-called documentaries critical of bankers or other "[p]oor corporate citizens." It's time the lawyers took a little heat, don't you think?

Darren McKinney
American Tort Reform Association
Washington, D.C.

Don Petersen

Poor corporate citizens! It's difficult to imagine how they deal with such an imbalance of resources, influence over the judiciary and the onerous constraints forced upon them by the Citizens United decision. I hope the U.S. Chamber of Commerce can assist them in distributing whatever their version of the "truth" is. For every "poster child" plaintiff's lawyer, there are at least 10 unindicted banksters without even surveying industries besides financial services.

Naomi Fein

As I read this, my brain scanning for political bias (and finding it), I was sort of thinking, "This sounds like a disgruntled plaintiff who decided to vent his disgruntlement on 'the System.'" And, by golly, I got down to the bottom and discovered my suspicions were valid.

As a fan of lawyers (I'm not one), I can say that it's pretty easy to find bad or corrupt lawyers, just as it is to find bad or corrupt human beings in any field of endeavor. Such as documentary filmmaking, say.

It's so much more difficult to analyze the complexity of any human being, such as Dickie Scruggs, who did terrific work against tobacco companies, on behalf of all of us. And then also bribed a judge.The charge against him does not wipe his record of his good works. Only a Manichean could see it that way.

As a current plaintiff in two lawsuits (and once I worked for Paramount Pictures), I could advise Brian Kelly how to pursue a lawsuit intelligently and with reasonable expectations. I would not advise him to take his egocentric beef with "The System" and turn it into what sounds like a bent screed.

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