WELCOME TO THE OFFICIAL RICHARD E GERSTEIN JUSTICE BUILDING BLOG. THIS BLOG IS DEDICATED TO JUSTICE BUILDING RUMOR, HUMOR, AND A DISCUSSION ABOUT AND BETWEEN THE JUDGES, LAWYERS AND THE DEDICATED SUPPORT STAFF, CLERKS, COURT REPORTERS, AND CORRECTIONAL OFFICERS WHO LABOR IN THE WORLD OF MIAMI'S CRIMINAL JUSTICE. THIS BLOG HAS BEEN CALLED "THE DEFINITIVE BLOG ON MIAMI CRIMINAL LAW" BY THE NY TIMES, THE WASHINGTON POST, THE POPE, AND DONALD TRUMP WHO ALSO ONCE SAID IT WAS "REALLY GREAT". POST YOUR COMMENTS, OR SEND RUMPOLE A PRIVATE EMAIL AT HOWARDROARK21@GMAIL.COM

Monday, September 06, 2010

LABOUR DAY

SCOTT SIMON, host, NPR:

On this Labor Day weekend, we might give some thought to what it's like to be without a job.

About one in every 10 Americans - 15 million, the population of New York, Los Angeles and Chicago combined - doesn't have a job. The Bureau of Labor Statistics say there are there million more who have just stopped looking for jobs after a year because they can't find one.

Having no job does not mean having no work. Your children must still be fed, bathed, and ferried to school, which is a lot of hard work. But you have less money for food, gas, and the new shoes your children need for school.

It means that if you have a toothache, you might pretend it will go away, until it becomes a sharp pain. Then you have to see a dentist, but may not be able to buy a new winter coat.

It means, as Halloween and the holiday season approach, that many good parents tell their children they just can't have some small toy or trinket that every other child seems to have. Or more likely, the parent will go without something else - again.

I talked to a man in Ohio this week who said he hadn't bought a stitch of new clothing in more than a year; his shirts were beginning to fray. So when he got his first job interview in months, he bought a new shirt so he wouldn't look tattered and defeated. And when he didn't get that job, he was ashamed that he'd bought a shirt instead of food for his family.

Having no job means that things people talk about these days -iPads, android phones, 3-D movies, new music, or meeting friends over $4 coffee drinks - are just beyond reach. You worry about getting dull, having nothing to talk about, and losing friends. You worry about life leaving you behind.

You may be sure that your family loves you, but worry that they'll start feeling sorry for you, and wonder why you have to be the one person in 10 who doesn't have a job. You may blame politicians, brokers and bankers, but in the middle of the night you might turn your eyes to the sky and wonder what you did, didn't do, or should have done.

Any one of us who's lucky enough to have a job today must worry about losing it. This Labor Day we might salute the millions of Americans who don't have jobs, but who in many ways work harder than ever.


8 comments:

Anonymous said...

Does this posting apply to Peter Adrien? Just asking

Anonymous said...

Ah, so now that we all feel good about how lucky we are to have jobs and how awful it must feel to live like the others who don't, the next time one of your client's pays you for work that you don't ever do, you should return them their money. You should remember how hard it is to come up with that money. How that money could have otherwise been used by that client for his family's needs. Just because he is a criminal (allegedly) doesn't justify you you as his lawyer of ripping him off. We are in a very powerful position, we control information, we deal with clients when we know more than they do. We should never take advantage of them. Repeat this three time- We should never take advantage of them, we should never take advantage of them, we should never take advantage of them. (even if our car payment is due)

Anonymous said...

Maybe this is why a bunch of us have our own law firms. We do OK and we always have work, although lately many of our clients cannot come up with the money so easily.

Remember when a job with the government, Eastern Airlines, Pan Am etc meant that you were set for life? No job is safe anymore. Hell, if you work for the county, they bend over backwards to find a reason to fire you.

Yes, I am happy to have my own firm.

Anonymous said...

Rumpole
FRom Tuesdays Herald. I agree w/ Help me Howard andtrust the uninformed masses more than the Govn.
D. Sisselman


Renewed debate over judicial elections
.A state legislator is suggesting that circuit court judges be appointed by the governor rather than elected.
BY ANTHONY MAN AND TONYA ALANEZ
Sun Sentinel
The unprecedented number of challenges to sitting Broward Circuit Court judges in 2008 and 2010 has reignited the debate over whether some Florida judges should be appointed instead of elected.

``The whole process, quite frankly, stinks,'' said state Sen. Jeremy Ring, D-Parkland. ``It's a travesty.''

Ring said he would like to scrap elections for circuit judges. Instead, he would have panels screen candidates who would be appointed to the bench by the governor. The appointed judges would face voters later in retention elections but wouldn't go head-to-head with challengers.

Such a system is already used to fill vacancies between elections and fill new trial court openings when the Legislature creates judgeships. But those appointees later are required to go through elections, just like any other politician.

The merit-retention system already is used in Florida for appellate court judges.

While Broward Public Defender Howard Finkelstein acknowledges elections are traumatic and trying, he thinks shielding Circuit Court judges from them ``because a few people dared to run against sitting judges, that's an outrageous position. This is nothing but a bunch of powerful insiders trying to control this thing called justice. Justice belongs to the people. The people get to make the decisions.''

RIFE WITH PROBLEMS

Ring, who is not a lawyer, said the current system is rife with problems: There were so many contests this year it was difficult for voters to make informed decisions; judges get campaign contributions from lawyers who appear before them, and ``they're out there campaigning and it results in a huge backlog in their courts.''

State Rep. Perry Thurston, D-Plantation, who is a lawyer, echoed many of Ring's concerns. He said he likely would sponsor a version of what Ring is talking about.

Anonymous said...

part2


``It takes away from the judiciary to have to go out and solicit campaign funds from individuals who are going to actually appear before you. That doesn't mean they can't be fair and impartial. But certainly if I'm on the other side not making a contribution, how can you not think it may affect their judgment?'' he said.

Prospects for change aren't good. The idea has come up before and never gotten far. Ring said it would either require a change to the Florida Constitution, which has to have approval from the Legislature and the voters, or a countywide petition drive to collect 74,000 signatures -- 10 percent of the votes in the 2008 presidential election.

And citizens might not easily give up their authority to pick judges.

``I don't think that voters would vote to take that away from themselves, and I don't think they should,'' said Kevin Hill, an associate professor of political science at Florida International University.

When the idea came up at a town hall meeting this year, Thurston said some voters didn't like the idea. He argued, ``We do not want people to get `black robe fever,' to think they don't have to answer to the people. And that's the other side of the equation.''

Of the 50 states and District of Columbia, 27 elect judges in partisan or nonpartisan elections. The rest have some kind of appointment or merit selection system. Ring said his proposal would apply only to circuit court judges, who handle more important cases than the small claims and misdemeanors that go to county judges.

Ring said he's talking about the idea now, before anyone knows if Democrat Alex Sink or Republican Rick Scott will be the next governor. He doesn't want anyone to think it's designed to as an advantage for one party or the other.

OTHERS AGREE

Clarence McKee, a lawyer, Republican committeeman and member of the Judicial Nominating Commission in Broward, said it sounds like a good idea. So did Mitch Ceasar, a lawyer, chairman of the Broward Democratic Party, and member of the Judicial Nominating Commission in the mid-1990s under then-Gov. Lawton Chiles.

However, Ceasar said, he would only support the idea if the commissions are like they were before Gov. Jeb Bush. In those days, Ceasar said, there were three appointees from the governor, three from the Florida Bar and three lay people chosen by the first six. Now all nine are chosen by the governor.

McKee said the nominating commissions review the candidates' backgrounds, interview the applicants and recommend three to six names to the governor



Read more: http://www.miamiherald.com/2010/09/07/1811328/renewed-debate-over-judicial-elections.html#ixzz0yqF9RvDK

Anonymous said...

And it is going to get a lot worse. The problem you present is real but only represents a fraction of the economic and human toll. The unemployed do not have jobs because those who are employed are afraid to spend because they may also lose their jobs. It is a tough cycle to break. I remember buying my first house in 1989. Two years later I needed a car. I was short money but the bank lent it to me knowing full well the value of that house was going to go up and my earnings would increase each year. Try convincing someone now of that. I am in my mid 50's. This economic slump is the worst of my life, even worse than the 74/75 recession. 75% of my clients are having serious financial problems with no hope in sight. America has suffered a trauma every 60-70 years. Revolution, Civil War, Depression/WWII, and now something is right around the corner that will make today's conditions downright hospitable. I hope I am wrong but I don't think so.

Anonymous said...

As a sole practitioner without ties to a bonds person or criminal syndicate, I often wake up nights like the gentleman in this post.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Rump... Us young, ignorant lawyers who are enslaved by the government want to know what it's like on the OTHER side. How much do we all make once we break free from the chains of public service? Us poor folk make between 35 - 45 G's ...enough for rent, groceries at the Winn Dixie and some bad liquor. So how about it? Can I rake in 60G's? 80? 100? Give me the real truth! How much am I giving up by getting this "experience"? Which of you guys takes down the MOST? Tony "CA$H MONEY" Mallo? Bobby "THE MAN" Reiff??? Richard "I OWN AIRCRAFT" Hersch? Even if there's no hard facts, what's the rumor?