Friday, May 17, 2019

ABA trivially raises standard for accreditation; toilet law schools wage war against bar exams

Overriding strident opposition from its scamster-dominated House of Delegates, the ABA has finally forced through a namby-pamby amendment to its Standard 316. The former standard provided various means by which a law school could retain accreditation, notoriously among them "having at least 70% of its graduates pass the bar at a rate within 15 percentage points of the average first-time bar pass rate for ABA-approved law school graduates in the same jurisdiction for three out of the five most recently completed calendar years". Under the revised standard, at least 75% of those of a law school's graduates who take a bar exam must pass within two years. A law school that fails this standard has two years in which to come into compliance.

The new standard takes effect immediately.

This weak change may perhaps drive a few schools to stop scraping the bottom of the barrel for students. But it has already sparked reactionary struggle. Yesterday, presumably in anticipation of today's revision of Standard 316, various high officials from the following 13 ABA-accredited law schools wrote to ask the ABA to "convene a task force to work toward an appropriate outcome standard to determine fitness for the practice of law" and to offer to serve on the task force themselves:

District of Columbia
North Carolina Central
Northern Kentucky
South Dakota
Southern University Law Center
Texas Southern University
Thomas Jefferson
Western New England

The list reads like a veritable Who's Who of toilets and über-toilets. What do these exalted scamsters propose? They assure us that they "express no consensus view on an appropriate standard or outcome". Yet they add the following:

The precipitous decline in bar pass rates of graduates of ABA-accredited law schools in almost every state in the last ten years signals that the exams, themselves, may be faulty, that scoring may be improperly designed, or that other methods of determining fitness for the practice of law should be studied. We think an examination of how best to determine fitness for the practice of law will be fittingly complemented by the work of the NCBE Testing Task Force that is looking at the bar exam itself to determine whether it is “keeping pace with the changing legal profession.” While decline in bar pass rates might be addressed through a modified bar exam, additional solutions can be identified through an ABA task force studying the broader issue of an appropriate standard to determine fitness for the practice of law.

And there we have it. They blame the bar exams themselves for that "precipitous decline", and they propose to identify "an appropriate standard"—apparently the modification or outright replacement of the bar exams. Never do they suggest that the law schools could be responsible for any part of the decline. Well, the bar exams haven't changed much over the past decade, but the quality of the students at many an über-toilet has indeed declined precipitously. Consider the following illustrative data, which show for each year the LSAT scores (at the 25th, 50th, and 75th percentiles) and the rate of success on the state's bar exam for those graduates who took it in the year in question:

2010: 144/146/151; 84.5%
2017: 139/142/146; 58.8%

2010: 153/155/159; 79.3%
2017: 145/148/150; 46.9%

Thomas Jefferson
2010: 149/151/153; 55.9%
2017: 142/144/147; 26.5%

On the other extreme, we have the following very different results:

2010: 170/172/175; 97.7%
2017: 169/171/173; 97.7%

2010: 171/173/176; 98.0%
2017: 170/173/175; 100.0%

2010: 171/173/176; 97.1% (New York, not Connecticut)
2017: 170/173/175; 98.3%

These data, admittedly not exhaustive, suggest a correlation over time between a school's LSAT scores and its rates of success on the relevant bar exam. If it be objected that the two groups of schools represent different states and therefore different bar exams, I can happily substitute the U of Michigan (same state as Cooley), Duke (same state as Elon), and Stanford (same state as Thomas Jefferson): the results are similar. And they offer no support for the groundless allegation of "faulty" bar exams or "improperly designed" scoring.

Now, it is true that correlation does not imply causation. But the data above give at least grounds for suspicion. Any serious investigation would look at the cohorts themselves and ask whether the well-established decline in the quality of the students at many lousy law schools had anything to do with the plummeting of those cohorts' rates of success on the bar exams. Common sense suggests that it did, and the data back that up. But of course the scamsters who live large off toilet law schools won't do anything that might jeopardize their fancily paid sinecures. Instead, they want to abolish the exams that expose their schools' utter lousiness—all while purporting to act in the public interest.

Appointing a "task force" packed with a baker's dozen of toilet law schools would be tantamount to setting foxes to guard the henhouse. With at most three exceptions, those schools are utter disasters. Why the hell should they get to decide on "an appropriate standard"? They have no meaningful standards! They certainly should not be able to springboard themselves into compliance with Standard 316 by supplanting the bar exams with some low threshold that even their sub-marginal cohorts might be able to cross.

While they scheme to neutralize requirements for maintaining accreditation, the über-toilets have almost three years to bring their graduates' rates of passing up to the 75% mark. Some of them might succeed by imposing a minimum LSAT score of 150 or more. That, however, would entail reducing enrollment to a small fraction of the current level, and many über-toilets could not survive so drastic a reduction. I therefore anticipate open warfare against bar exams, the LSAT, and other objective standards that lay bare the irremediable shittiness of many dozens of toilet law schools.


  1. Surprised that UC Irvine, with all its pretensions to respectability, would knowingly associate itself with these third-tier toilet schools in whining that bar exams are too hard for their students. Chemerinsky wouldn't have made a PR mistake like that.

    1. Yes, it seems surprising, and it does look like a PR blunder. On the other hand, consider the data:

      2012: 162/165/167; 90.2%
      2017: 160/163/165; 80.5%

      Not exactly a Cooley-style decline, but far from glorious.

      Scamsters these days bitch endlessly about California's bar exam, which is marked to a slightly higher standard than most others in the US. When one person in five from faux-prestigious Irvine fails the exam, Chemerinsky and his fellow scamsters have an incentive to join the toilet movement to have the exam watered down or abolished.

  2. Yes, the bar exam will soon be considered an unfair barrier to practice-as if new grads were practice ready-and there will be a major push by the scamsters to abolish it. If Wisconsin doesn't need a bar exam, why does anyone else? Otherwise, law schools may be held to actual objective standards.

    1. Doesn't Wisconsin have a bar exam? I understand that only graduates of the law school of the U of Wisconsin are exempt.

      Germany requires two exams (Staatsexamina), with four six-month apprenticeships in between. The first exam, I understand, takes two days; the second is even longer. The first exam may be taken only twice, and the many people who fail it don't even get a degree—after nine semesters of study. The whole process takes many years. German jurists would laugh if told that thousands of marginally literate people in the US rack up $200k or $300k of non-dischargeable debt for toilet law schools and that hackademic scamsters are fighting to have a rather simple exam abolished so that their 25-year-old darlings with practically no skills, knowledge, experience, or even intelligence can start practicing law immediately after getting a three-year Mickey Mouse degree featuring such pabulum as "Hip-Hop and the American Constitution".

    2. Don't forget that Marquette Law grads gain admission w/o taking the bar; only graduates of out of state schools have to take the WI bar exam.

    3. Wisconsin waives in graduates of U of Wisconsin and Marquette; they do have a bar exam for all others. I will, at least, give the cheeseheads credit for having only two law schools for 5.8 million inhabitants while geographically compact Massachusetts has seven accredited and one pseudo-accredited schools for 6.9 million souls. Allowing, of course, for the fact that Fair Hahvahd draws a truly national student body so could be anywhere without impacting masshole lemmings.

    4. Thanks. I wasn't aware that Marquette too benefited from the exemption. Would a new toilet law school in Wisconsin also benefit? If so, I'm surprised that none has been opened yet. (Shut up, Old Guy: don't give the scamsters any ideas about discovering the "need" for a law school in Appleton or Eau Claire.)

  3. Regarding cut scores: It's common knowledge that there's a correlation between barely passing the bar and later discipline stemming from incompetence. The proper methodology would be to cross-reference individual bar exam scores with discipline for various forms of professional ineptitude, and identify the point at which a higher bar exam score ceases to lower the risk of actionable incompetence. There should then be an open and honest discussion about how many lawyers are realistically needed, how far the cut score would need to be lowered to produce that number, and whether the supposed benefits of having more lawyers justify the proportionately larger amount of malpractice committed by those on the margins. Call me a cynic, but I suspect that's not quite what they have in mind.

    1. in NJ, discipline for "ineptitude" or malpractice is exceedingly rare. the vast majority of cases involve financial malfeasance with client funds. It has nothing whatsoever to do with sometimes ancient bar exam scores. I would bet that's the case nationwide.

      By the way, how do schools track bar exam passage taken outside their state? Personally, i was never contacted about my bar status.

  4. This is the beginning of the end. This is the Ardennes Counter-offensive of the garbage can law schools. They've admitted bad students, ripped them off, and they still can't balance the books, so they're scraping up the last panzer divisions and launching the last desperate break-through attempt against the allied line that is the Bar Exam. They have no credibility left, and with the Dept of Ed breathing down the ABA's neck, the schools are doomed.

    The scamblog victory is imminent.

    1. We at Outside the Law School Scam shall do our best to hoist the red flag over the ruined Reichstag of the law-school scam.

    2. I visited Berlin forty years after the red flag went up and the Reichstag fell just inside the American zone. Based on what I saw on both sides of the wall I think people on the two different sides would have very different things to say about victory. Have we defined victory? More to the point have we defined it for the lemmings?

      Folks, there are a lot of total idiots out there going to law school right now when anyone in the world but them can see what's going to happen to them. Will driving some toilets to a 90% bar exam fail rate stop them from believing they'll be in the 10%?

      I say this war cannot and will not be won until student loans cannot be guaranteed by the gubmint until the borrowers have demonstrated real creditworthiness. You can't stop the toilets as long as they accept warm bodies, the lemmings are too stupid to see the light. Student loans fuel the scam, Hitler's last gamble, literally, ran out of fuel. Cut the fuel line.

    3. There were, and still are, many people in what was West Germany who lament the fall of the Third Reich. The US kept the "former" Nazis in power and blocked efforts to remove them. (By contrast, East Germany underwent thoroughgoing de-Nazification.)

      As with the fascist Germans, the lemmings will have to have victory imposed on them, and it won't be what they want. Victory will involve saving them from the law-school scam. Any "victory" that enabled knuckle-dragging toileteers to become lawyers would be a victory for the enemy.

      Curtailing government-guaranteed student loans is an important part of the solution. Unfortunately, the government is in the pocket of the scamsters, because Hyer Ejookayshun™ is big business in the United States of Uhmerica.

    4. OG, who are these Nazis the U.S. kept in power? How did the U.S. "block" efforts to remove them. De-Nazification isn't worth much when the Nazis are replaced by a government that shoots unarmed people who simply want to move to another part of the country, and gives bonuses to encourage border guards to aim for a kill.

    5. We're far from the topic now, and even from the purpose of Outside the Law School Scam. So I'm not going to continue this discussion. But, since you asked, it is well known that East Germany was committed to de-Nazification. Many of the top leaders, quite a few of them Jewish, had spent years in prison or in exile on account of their resistance to the Nazi régime. I can provide sources if necessary, but this is really not a controversial point. Look up the biographies of Walter Ulbricht, Erich Honecker, Otto Grotewohl, Hilde Benjamin (long-standing Minister of Justice—and female, at a time when the law in West Germany forbade women to work without their husbands' permission), Hermann Axen, and Wilhelm Pieck, just for starters.

      By contrast, the state in West Germany was dominated by "former" Nazis at all levels, right through the 1960s and into the 1970s (when they finally began to retire or die). That includes most of the judiciary. The first three chancellors of West Germany were Nazis or fellow-travelers: Konrad Adenauer (not a Nazi, but he collaborated with the Nazis even before they came to power, and he filled his government with Nazis), Ludwig Erhard (leading Nazi industrial planner and tool of the odious firm IG Farben, which produced Zyklon-B for the gas chambers), Kurt Kiesinger (Nazi since 1933, second-ranking agent in the foreign-propaganda service, and liaison to Goebbels's ministry).

      The US made sure that de-Nazification was halted early in West Germany. The notorious 131er-Gesetz, an amendment to the West German constitution made in 1951, both ended prosecution of Nazis (other than a few top officials) and gave them the right to reinstatement in the public service. One year earlier, by contrast, West Germany barred all communists from the public service.

      For that matter, it was the US, along with Britain and France, that divided the country. The Soviet Union as long ago as the 1940s urged the prompt reunification of Germany, but the Yanks wouldn't hear of it.

      The US, Canada, and Britain also spirited thousands of Nazi war criminals away for use as propaganda agents, spies, or other Cold War tools.

    6. Anonymous, 70 people were shot in 40 years crossing the wall out of a population of 16 million. More people die of lightning than that. If you looked across the wall, which was placed to prevent CIA and West German government cash from poaching E. German skilled labor, you would have seen a modern, prosperous and leisure oriented group of people.
      However, I am impressed with the cake walk and free vacation you got in the army in the 1980s in a pre-open borders Europe. It must have been a privilege of the ages.

  5. Passing the Bar

    By Maurice Leiter

    The drive is uneventful,
    Mind racing with thoughts of
    Balls unspent; full.
    And Andre.

    “shall we meet for a drink”,
    Went the prior day’s phone call,
    “to discuss increasing
    our bar passage rate?”
    Even when speaking, he eschews his capitals.
    But his ass? I want to slap it all.

    I-40, truck stop ahoy!
    And there’s my boy,
    By a dumpster out back of a strip club.
    William H. Bowen is a prettier school than I’d imagined.

    I hop out of my chinos,
    Pull undies down past my hips,
    Then his bar passage rate increases by one
    As he slips his bar into my passage while
    Trucks slip past in the night.

    He’s firm and hungry.
    Ouch! I wish he would have doug less
    I feel his cummings lash my back,
    A veritable pond,
    Dribbling down my flanks
    As he wanks my hard cock just outside Little Rock.
    Returning the favor,
    I spray salty flavor
    Into the gutter.

    Millions of potential lives
    Discarded by our seedy actions.

    1. Ah, the inimitable verse of Maurice Leiter.

      You two could have done it dougie-style, for a fresh change of pace. With hips hopping to the rhythm of the American constitution.

      Pity that Alexander recently headed on to _UNT; otherwise, you could have arranged a threesome.

  6. If any of the usual toilet school suspects cared about anything other than lining their pockets, they'd have already closed in the name of protecting the public. If the ABA actually cared about protecting the public, they'd be encouraging the toilet schools to close. Instead, we the public just get the typical lip service from what can only be considered as a captured industry. It should be more than clear by now that meaningful reform won't be coming from within.

    There's plenty of information out there warning prospective victims of the law school scam now. Borrowing over six figures to attend some bottom-tier toilet school with the belief that said toilet school is going to be the ticket to a comfy, middle-class life is truly a fool's errand.

  7. The University of New Hampshire has renamed its law school for Franklin Pierce. Never mind that Pierce is generally regarded (at least by people not afflicted with New Hampshirite chauvinism) as one of the worst US presidents; parochial interests are paramount, irrespective of inconvenient facts.

    1. Franklin Pierce was the original name when it was an independent.

      On a visit to NH once, I visited some historical site and the guide said the Pierce was NH's only president, but they were glad to have had him. I guess the fact that he was a southern sympathizer doesn't bother uber Yankee New Hampshire.

  8. Japan's bar passage rate is only about 25%!

  9. Thanks for that, 10:51. The article suggests that Japan has been addressing its own law-school scam: half of the law schools have closed (or at least "stopped recruiting new classes") over the past fifteen years, and the government uses results (fancy that!) as a criterion for the allocation of funding. See below:

    "[A] surfeit of law schools has pushed down the pass rate for the bar exam, and prospective students are turning away from them.

    "Law school applicants reached a record 72,800 in fiscal 2004 but have now fallen below 10,000.

    "As law schools struggle to attract enrollees, even prestigious private universities in the capital, such as Rikkyo University and Aoyama Gakuin University, have stopped recruiting new classes. Only 39 law schools will recruit students for next fiscal year -- roughly half as many as in the halcyon days.

    "Back in 2002, the government set a target of having 3,000 candidates a year pass the bar exam by around 2010 in hopes of creating more lawyers. But with demand for legal services falling short of the supply of attorneys, the market has suffered a glut. The government in 2015 slashed the target to 1,500 or more.

    "To help weed out less-competitive law schools, the government in fiscal 2015 adopted such criteria as bar exam pass rates in deciding on subsidies."

    1. There is a shortage in Japan, as it's almost impossible to get a lawyer. However, there is no culture of litigation there. Not one single ((special person)) in the entire legal field pushing the boundaries of acceptable practice.