Gut Rumbles

January 21, 2005

doctors and lawyers

Let me clarify something I wrote in a post below. I am convinced that both doctors and lawyers fall into that same bell-curve that I've seen in every other line of work I ever watched.

You have 20% who are outstanding. You have 60% who are competent, but not brilliant. Then, you have 20% who need to be dragged off and shot because they're not worth a damn and they never will be. Just look around. You can see the same thing in EVERY PROFESSION, from brick-laying to zygote research. That just the way people are.

What I don't like is the fact the the bottom 20% of doctors aren't the ones facing malpractice suits every day. Even the really good ones get hammered whenever anything goes wrong, whether it's their fault or not. Lawyers and juries seem to expect "zero defects" from doctors, and if a patient dies or suffers complications from a complicated procedure, the automatic assumption is that the doctor did something wrong. And there might be some money to be made.

I've served twice on a jury for malpractice cases. Both cases were bullshit. We didn't give the plaintiff a dime in either case. But somebody spent a lot of money to defend both of them. That's what chaps my ass. What did the lawyer have to lose by suing? Nothing.

I want to see some kind of "loser pays" system in this country.


Saying "20%" is being too kind. Ain't you never heard of Sturgeon's Law? There's an amusing story behind it, but I'm trying not to be pedantic with other folks' bandwidth. No, am not being coy, Google it!

Posted by: Justthisguy on January 21, 2005 11:27 PM

Loser pays. That's all it would take to shut down the BS.

Posted by: Gmac on January 22, 2005 12:02 AM

I agree with a loser pays system.

Any shyster who brings more than 3 frivolous suits to trial shoud be disbarred.

A few years ago, I was at my wife's company dinner. An attorney who does work for the company was bragging about a lawsuit he won against WalMart.

His client was in the men's room dropping the Cosby kids at the pool close to closing time. A cleaning lady cracked the door and asked if anyone was inside doing his business. He was too shy to answer. She came in, cleaned the errant piss and shit off the floors (but didn't bother to open his stall door because it was locked) and left.

He sued on grounds of "Extreme Embarassment". And WalMart settled for $3000. Now, I am no fan of WalMart. But this douchebag shyster has a special place in my hell for bragging about how he "brought a giant to it's knees".

If I had had a few more in me, I would have jumped across the table and pimp slapped his sorry ass. ... I would probably still be in court if I had.
But he was proud of his accomplishment.

Posted by: rightisright on January 22, 2005 12:06 AM

Loser pays = (+/-) the "English Rule": you file a law suit, you lose, you pay defendant's legal fees, minimum. I don't think "Silky Pony" (John Edwards)/trial lawyers et. al. would buy into this. (YA THINK?)

Posted by: Mikey on January 22, 2005 12:31 AM

I'm a recovering lawyer AND I have never stolen cookies from a Girl Scout. Thanks. I feel better.

Posted by: Rumbear on January 22, 2005 12:46 PM

Sorry for the anonymity, but it could get really ugly if I put a public face on this statement. The email address (which only Acidman can see) is real.

Here's one for you:

The company I work for gets sued. It's a complete BS suit, and the other guy doesn't get a penny. We pay probably $50,000 in legal bills, though.

Then the shitbag (suing) lawyer goes to my boss and says, in essence, "Either you pay _my legal fees_ or I'll appeal and cost you more money to pay your own lawyer."

Long story short: $5,000 is less than $50,000. Boss man held his nose and paid up. We paid the slimeball to sue us, even though he had no case and lost.

Drawing and quartering is just too good for some people.

Posted by: Anonymous on January 25, 2005 11:29 AM
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