Archive for Law School

Who Needs Textbooks Anyway?

As I type this at my desk, I am surrounded by a thousands of dollars worth of textbooks. They are a constant reminder of this country’s corrupt educational system. Though inflation has risen 71% since 1986, college tuition and fees have risen 240% during that same period.

Textbooks in particular have risen 186%. In response to this, Bush recently signed the College Textbook Affordability Act. Though filled with good intentions, the Act falls short of actually alleviating the financial burden textbooks put upon students.

The Act merely requires schools to give faculty and students the ISBN numbers of the books so the faculty can choose reasonably priced books and students can look elsewhere for cheaper sale prices. The drafters of the Act failed to realize that websites like Craigslist and BigWords already assist students in finding their textbooks at lower prices.

The real problem, that the Act fails to address, is the recent trend of increasing the frequency of republications. New editions mean students can’t buy used textbooks and can’t sell back their textbooks at the end of the semester. The high prices stay high and we stay poor.

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DIY Debt Diversion

My dream is to live abroad and now I have one more reason to make that a reality. As everyone knows, student loans are a cement block that drown recent graduates, and as a person earning my JD and MBA, I will be no exception.

The traditional options for dealing with student loans are defer, pay, default, or die. I could stay in school forever and continue to defer my loans, I could pay $150,000, I could face the wrath of a collection agency, or I could die. None of those seem too appealing, so I found a more enjoyable solution: moving abroad.

With an international address, not only would I be spending my days strolling the Champs-Elysees, I would also be more difficult and expensive to find. To collect my payments, a collection company would have to hire international counsel or a third party debt collector, either of which would reduce their profit and, therefore, their incentive to find me.

I could never return to the US, but considering the current state of things, especially if Gramps and the Tramp (as my mom calls them) win, who would want to?

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Temptations and Procrastinations

So far, I have spent the entire day in my pjs sitting at my desk. While my husband went out to have a day with the boys and my dog slept on the sofa, I labored over my accounting book* and tried to avoid the evil electronic temptations in the household. Considering my constant craving for communication and the isolating study environment, I considered it a successful afternoon. I managed to minimize my email checking and facebook stalking to about once an hour, made one phone call, and watched no television. All I can say is this sacrifice for the Periodic Inventory System and the Present Value of an Ordinary Annuity better be worth it.

*I’m studying accounting because I am actually a JD/MBA student. I know….what was I thinking?

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Caution: Exams Approaching

First of all, I am so excited that I got 9 views yesterday. Now just multiply that by 50 and I will have a real blog on my hands. 🙂

Sorry for my sarcasm, but I am at the point of the semester where I get stressed and cranky. I am over half way through and can see my final exams looming on the horizon. At this point, I start remembering I am not as smart as I once thought, I have reading to catch up on, and I haven’t done as much “extra” work as I had originally planned.

That is the best part about law school: you are expected to go beyond the reading assignments and read the cases referred to in the cases, complete hypos from the Examples & Explanation books, talk to the professor, and work in study groups. If you hate the reading topic, too bad. Be prepared to read some more and talk about it up to and after class.

Anyone else stressed and need to vent? Anyone else even out there?

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Why the Hell Did You Go to Law School?

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Law School Word of the Day: Arbitrary

ar·bi·trar·y (ahr-bi-trer-ee): subject to individual will or judgment without restriction; contingent solely upon one’s discretion

The most popular and important word to know for law school is “arbitrary.” If you are cold called by a professor and don’t know the answer, just say something is arbitrary and everyone will think you are a genius. The text of the law is arbitrary, the purpose of law is arbitrary, police enforcement of law is arbitrary. It doesn’t matter how you apply the word or even if you use it correctly. You merely have to include it somewhere in your answer.

Remember, law school isn’t about being different or bringing in new ideas. It is about following the pack and regurgitating the same old thing over and over.

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