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"A game, a joke, a racket"

People have to believe in our justice system. They have to trust that it is fair. When justice becomes a game, a joke, a racket, or a private preserve for the privileged few, the foundation for a just, fair, and orderly society begins to rot....

The plain truth is that our system of civil justice is out of control. It has been hijacked by a relatively small group of lawyers who have gamed the system for their own gain, often at the expense of their own clients. These lawyers have been enabled and encouraged by a growing and troubling public attitude that ducks personal responsibility, seeks profit from every misfortune, and creates scapegoats for every mistake. It is time to restore balance and common sense to our civil justice system. If we do not, California and America will be less competitive and less innovative, and we will see a spreading corrosive impact across our entire society.

-- from a speech delivered in California last year by civic leader, businessman and former gubernatorial candidate William E. Simon Jr., and reprinted by the Manhattan Institute's Center for Legal Policy as its Civil Justice Memo #43.



Rafael Mangual
Project Manager,
Legal Policy

Katherine Lazarski
Manhattan Institute


Published by the Manhattan Institute

The Manhattan Insitute's Center for Legal Policy.