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Ear to the Ground

Law Journal Names Gonzales ‘Lawyer of the Year’

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Posted on Dec 12, 2007
AP photo / Pablo Martinez Monsivais

Making headlines once again:  Newsworthiness is a major factor in the selection process for the ABA Journal’s Lawyer of the Year, which Gonzales won for the year 2007.

The editors of the American Bar Association Journal have named former Attorney General Alberto Gonzales as this year’s winner of the Lawyer of the Year award—and, perhaps even more curiously, they already have picked Gonzales’ replacement, Attorney General Michael Mukasey, as the winner for 2008.

AP via Yahoo News:

The monthly magazine gave the awards to lawyers who made the most news, said editor and publisher Edward A. Adams.

“Think about Time magazine’s Person of the Year,” Adams said in an interview. “In years past they’ve named people like Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin. So we’re not suggesting by these awards that these are the best lawyers in any sense of the word. We are saying they are the most newsworthy—and perhaps also the best.”

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By Louise, December 15, 2007 at 6:32 pm Link to this comment

#120439 by cyrena

“Damn they piss me off!!”


Me too!

My grandson has a friend that just dropped out of school. He’s a really nice kid. Hard working, honest, but unable to concentrate. And sadder still, he doesn’t realize what a great person he is.

When my grandson asked me why I thought he was that way, the first thing that came to mind was PTSD. This kid has a mother that would scare the shit out of the meanest dictator.

Years, probably since birth, this kid has lived with a swinging pendulum hanging over his head. When he walks in the door, he never knows if he will be greeted with, “I love you.” Or a screaming [you can hear her a block away] vitriol of bitter verbal condemnation.

Ergo ... he jumps. He cant concentrate. He doesn’t like himself. He is confused about what’s real. And the worst part is, he feels responsible for it all. Because no matter how hard he tries, he never knows what to expect. The quiet terror that comes in waiting for the door to open. What’s on the other side? Hate or love? Fear or security? Acceptance or attack?

What the bush and the repubs do to the citizens is no less a form of torture than any of their other favorite forms of torture. Particularly when you realize, unless they are stopped, just like the whacko mother who has very nearly destroyed her sons ego, they will have destroyed everything we all hold dear.

But that shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone. They are sadists after all.

And thanks.

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By cyrena, December 15, 2007 at 2:35 pm Link to this comment

#120428 by Louise

Great post as usual Louise. And, I think you hit it so on the head with the shock overload. As I ponder it all, (and Naomi Klein’s book “The Shock Doctrine) it puts me in mind of the sustained psychological torture that they do to the detainees. No, Naomi Klein doesn’t suggest that, and I’m certainly not suggesting that what we’re going through could be anything close to what the thousands of torture victims have gone through at the hands of this evil government (with the help from gonzo), BUT it’s reason enough for a lot of folks to simply drop out, or tune out, or go nuts.

And yes, it would seem like they just speed it up. Sort of like just turning the switch on the electric shock higher and higher.

Damn they piss me off!!

#120317 by Douglas Chalmers

•  Don’t forget that all of those presidential candidates you are all stumblimg over yourselves to vote for are all lawyers, too, uhh….....
Douglas, you’ve reminded us of this about 14 jillion times, even though it’s not quite true. (they aren’t ALL lawyers). Ron Paul is a physician, though I don’t know when he’s had time to practice his profession, since he’s been in politics for at least a decade if not longer.

As for the batch of politicians at the top of the heap now, including Dick Bush, neither of them are lawyers. (but cheney sure does have his own hand-picked batch of them, who advise him on how to do every dirty trick in the book). And, I’m sure not all of the repug candidates are lawyers either. Nor do I feel like looking up all of their bios to find out.

That said, there’s a REASON why politicians, (including presidents) have typically been lawyers: if one is running a government, or participating in legislation, it’s downright helpful to KNOW THE FLIPPIN’ LAW!!! Obviously, there’s no guarantee that they won’t twist it or ignore it, but it’s still helpful to know.

So, this isn’t some strange phenomena, OK? That politicians are frequently lawyers. And, not ALL lawyers are evil doers. Just like not ALL clergy persons are evil doers.

So, please cut us some slack on this stuff. Law – government – politics have a lot in common. A basic IQ test might ask you to make that association. A government is organized by laws, (including the very important Constitution). Politicians are involved in the process of law making. (among other things)  Ergo, many politicians are lawyers.

A no-brainer.

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By Louise, December 15, 2007 at 12:44 pm Link to this comment

Last night I watched Keith Olbermann guest appear on Bill Moyers Journal. Something occurred to me. [not original to me I’m sure]

We are in shock overload. We are so buried in Bush/repub scandal, corruption, dishonesty, theft, and yes murder ... we simply can not process it all anymore!

No one knows that better than the corporate/political criminals beating us and our democracy to death!

No one!

So, rather than diminish, or at the very least slow it down they are actually speeding it up! Believing I’m sure that eventually the public will scream uncle and get busy digging their own graves.

Name calling is so pointless. But pointing out the absolute evil of totalitarianism and fascism is not calling names. It’s drawing attention to how we have elevated mediocrity, coupled with dishonesty and a complete lack of moral conscience to a high ideal to be sought after.

Which brings me to Gonzales.

I doubt the man looks in the mirror and feels remorse for his involvement with the ugly side of republican reality. Mediocrity is never quite smart enough to recognize the ring in the nose. Or the chain on the ring. Or the vile creature pulling the chain. No, all mediocrity sees is the money the vile creature is sitting on.

So, for his stupidity, his blind allegiance to an evil cause, his unquestioning ability to twist the law into something very unlawful, and his mind-numbing inability to see his own guilt, Mr. Gonzales dominated the news for the better part of a year. That, I suspect is why he has been highlighted.

But I could be wrong. I’m sure he has been “richly” rewarded for his high level of mediocrity, and maybe that ... the money ... is the most valuable criteria used for determining an attorneys capacity for “greatness.”

In July 2006, an ABA task force under then President Michael S. Greco released a report that concluded that George W. Bush’s use of “signing statements” violates the Constitution. So it appears they are on our side.

Well it seems to me Gonzales misdeeds, when it comes to the Constitution, are no less offensive than those of his master, George. But then who knows what goes through the minds of an editorial board? Maybe that’s why they work on publications rather than practicing law.

Or maybe, just maybe, like Olbermann they want to keep the outrage alive.

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By BruSays, December 15, 2007 at 9:17 am Link to this comment

#120317 by Douglas Chalmers on 12/15 at 1:26 am

Chalmers….I haven’t forgotten that point for a moment.

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By Douglas Chalmers, December 15, 2007 at 2:26 am Link to this comment

#120248 by BruSays on 12/14: “Still, even being named the “best lawyer” by other’s of your ilk hardly puts you in the company of Mother Theresa or Santa Claus now, does it…?”

Don’t forget that all of those presidential candidates you are all stumblimg over yourselves to vote for are all lawyers, too, uhh….....

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By BruSays, December 14, 2007 at 4:41 pm Link to this comment

At the risk of being misinterpreted let me first say:

I’m on your side guys. I can’t stomach Gonzales - or the nitwit who gave him his job, either.

Having said that, we all need to remember the ABA isn’t (necessarily) choosing the best lawyer; they’re choosing the lawyer “who made the most news.” You gotta hand it to the Gonzo, he made plenty!

(But it was troubling to read that the ABA found they needed to add the five words at the end of this quote: “we’re not suggesting by these awards that these are the best lawyers in any sense of the word. We are saying they are the most newsworthy—and perhaps also the best.”)

Still, even being named the “best lawyer” by other’s of your ilk hardly puts you in the company of Mother Theresa or Santa Claus now, does it?

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By lawlessone, December 14, 2007 at 12:45 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

In Pakistan, the legal community is on the picket lines throwing everything including rocks to help oust a dictator.  In this country, the legal community names the dictator’s henchman “Lawyer of the Year.” 

Too bad America doesn’t have a Constitution of its own the local lawyers would care enough about to protect.

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By ElkoJohn, December 14, 2007 at 10:49 am Link to this comment

so let’s see, Bush is the front guy for the big money types… Bush’s lawyer, Gonzo, pushed Bush’s agenda ‘cause that’s what lawyers do for their clients… the majority of elected officials in congress cowtow to the big money types… the big money types have the best lawyers to find loop-holes for the sake of big money… the lawyers write our laws… wow, no wonder the ABA thinks Gonzo is the best.

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By Sonny, December 14, 2007 at 10:31 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Will wonders never end! The ABA has gone off the deep end with this Lawyer of the year award.
Gonzales is a discredit to the Law profession and should be disbared.

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By cyrena, December 14, 2007 at 12:21 am Link to this comment

OMIGOD!!! You all have truly made my day!! Ya know, I put off reading this thing, after I saw the title. I had exams coming up, (no way am I telling what they were for) and so I just knew that I couldn’t take it…because it didn’t show up in the humor section, so…I just couldn’t look.

But finally, I did. And, I’m so glad I waited. Your comments had me laughing so hard, I nearly choked. Every time we think things couldn’t be more bizarre, they ARE!!

Now you know things are really something when you can’t be sure if you’re reading a joke, or a real report. Ocjim, I know just what you mean. It happens to me every time I read something from Andy Borowitz. Now we KNOW by now, that Andy is a humorist/satire writer. But, I swear to God, every time I read his stuff, I find myself double checking, because as ridiculous as it sounds, I KNOW it could be TRUE!! (like Huckabee picking Jesus as his running mate for VP – I swear, it was perfectly believable)

Well, this is the flip side. You read it, and you’re SURE it’s a JOKE, until you finish reading it.

Oh man…I love the comments. Your choice guys and girls…you can either be beamed up, or slither down the rabbit hole. I would suggest that you STAY AWAY FROM THE WATER though. That’s probably what’s doing it.

Head for the Jack, or the Johnnie or the Remy, or something else with a color to it. It’s what we CAN’T see that we should be worried about. I’m convinced. I think.

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By Daniel, December 13, 2007 at 6:15 pm Link to this comment

Wait a minute Mr. Edward A. Adams, you are justifying your choice of “Lawyer of the Year” by making a parallel between Gonzo and Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin. Although these last two were not lawyers, I think you’re on to something.

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By lawlessone, December 13, 2007 at 11:49 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

The American Bar Association has got to be kidding.  “Lawyer of the Year” for Gonzales???  Pick some other title. 

Gonzales deserves an ABA Journal cover story or editorial alright, but it should be for his disgrace and disbarment.  Frankly, his law school should be revoking his diploma since it sure looks like he never attended a Constitutional Law class.  Certainly, his oath of office seems to have meant nothing to him.

It is embarrassing enough at times to be a licensed lawyer with the likes of Gonzales and his cronies claiming the title.  To have the primary collective voice for our profession naming him “Lawyer of the Year” is disgusting.

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By QuyTran, December 13, 2007 at 9:47 am Link to this comment

Alberto Gonzales would commit SUICIDE because he has
been severely INSULTED by The American Bar Association Journal.

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By jatihoon, December 13, 2007 at 9:13 am Link to this comment

Read carefully, “It says,” American “BAR”, R.Gonzales, Association.

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By Sharon Ash, December 13, 2007 at 8:59 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Well, maybe there is hope for Michael Vick getting some kind of an award of excellence from the Humane Society!  Just go ahead and beam me up Scotty….

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By J Carvalko, December 13, 2007 at 6:42 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Today, I learned that the ABA has seen fit to nominate Alberto Gonzales to Man of the Year. It seems to suggest that the criterion was “top newsmaker”. I do not buy it! I could recite a litany of reasons why he should be sanctioned by the legal profession, but one particularly galling reason was his role in the wiretapping of American citizens without a court order; and as such he abetted a potential violation of the time honored right to the attorney-client privilege. For this he deserves ABA Man of the Year? How about Scoundrel of the Year? I am incensed over the ABA’s squandering of an opportunity to honor our members for contributing to the betterment of the world, not its deterioration! Look for my resignation from the ABA!

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By Novista, December 13, 2007 at 6:24 am Link to this comment

Gonzo was lauded, too, by the American Plumbers Trade Association for his ability to handle leaks. All he needed was his “I don’t recall” spanner.

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By Marjorie L. Swanson, December 13, 2007 at 6:09 am Link to this comment

If the American Bar Association wanted to do one thing, just one thing, to justify the low esteem in which their profession is held, they did it. Now all those that believe ALL lawyers are corrupt, money-grubbing S.O.B.‘s with neither conscience nor ethics can point to this one act and say “See, I told ya so.”

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By purplewolf, December 12, 2007 at 11:03 pm Link to this comment

They have scraped a hole in the bottom of the barrel and Big Dumb Alberto has fallen into the MUCK for all to see (Mukasey)underneath it.

Along with the dumbing down of America,I see we have also lowered the standards once upheld to measure a persons worthiness of being “Person of the Year”. If the qualification is now the number of times a person is mentioned in the news we can all be thankful that Brittany Spears or Paris Hilton never went to law school.

A more fitting title would be “Skank of the Year”.

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By ocjim, December 12, 2007 at 9:34 pm Link to this comment

I actually thought this was a joke. Elmer Fudd would be a better selection.

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By DennisD, December 12, 2007 at 7:51 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Why the f**k not, we’re living in Bizarro World as it is. I understand the votes were tabulated on a Diebold   “H.A.L. 9000” and they never fail. Just ask Dave.

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By QuyTran, December 12, 2007 at 7:12 pm Link to this comment

The American Janitoral Association Journal had nominated Alberto Gonzales as its Most Honored Janitor of the decade. The AJAJ is blood brother of The American Bar Association Journal.

Congratulations to both !

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By sad old german, December 12, 2007 at 6:33 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Elsewhere, the AP announced that Donald Rumsfeld was named philosopher of the decade by the American Philosophical Association, while Dick Cheney is expected to be awarded the much coveted
‘humanitarian of the year’ award at a special gala at the UN on December 31st.

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By VillageElder, December 12, 2007 at 5:21 pm Link to this comment

This proves my theory that there are space aliens circling the planet zapping people with dumbfuck rays.  You know it’s true if you have driven lately.

Wasn’t it a great life before we fell down the rabbit hole?

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By Thomas Billis, December 12, 2007 at 4:59 pm Link to this comment

If people on other planets are looking for intelligent life in the Universe and they get a copy of this they will pass us by.

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By Mayfly, December 12, 2007 at 4:52 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

If “Lawyer of the Year” goes to the lawyer who has received the most notoriety, I suppose Gonzo is most eligible.  By this criteria iff some lawyer is caught with his foot under the bathroom stall I suppose he will be “Lawyer of the Year.”

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By Louise, December 12, 2007 at 4:35 pm Link to this comment

#119771 brewerstroupe on 12/12 at 1:13 pm

“Lawyer of the Year!”

“Excuse me. I seem to have wandered into some kind of parallel universe. I’m going to have a long drink of water and re-start my computer.”


That was exactly my reaction when I read this!

What on earth is going on here?

Maybe the fruitcakes who insist we’ve been invaded by the Lizard People are right!

Or maybe that loose wire who suggested Bush, et all were actually children of the space aliens who landed in New Mexico back in the fifties ... is on to something!

Or ... maybe we have all wandered into some kind of parallel universe!

I don’t know, do I dare drink the water?


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By Margaret from Portland Oregon, December 12, 2007 at 4:31 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I sometimes wonder if Congress is just a waste of time, everyone who watched knew the man was covering up for Bush/Chaney, etc.

Now when is congress going to get some spine, the current adminstration should be impeached because now we are going to war that is just to keep control of the masses in check, after all we have to be afraid, and to keep the masses afraid there is constant war, and then we have a military government.

Close to the next election we will have a scare again, and New York might fall for it, it is crazy that these scares cost the city money, but Republicians seem to have money to burn.

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By DASM, December 12, 2007 at 4:13 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

This man deserves no recognition whatsoever, unless it is in a war crimes trial.

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By Douglas Chalmers, December 12, 2007 at 3:57 pm Link to this comment

#119771 by brewerstroupe on 12/12: “...I seem to have wandered into some kind of parallel universe….”

Yes, its called “the legal profession”, uhh. That includes the judiciary by definition as they are all law graduates. So much for law journals - and lawyers!?!?

Worst thing, though, is that most politicians are law graduates too…....

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By Zlaya, December 12, 2007 at 3:02 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

He deserves it.  He didn’t say anything.  He kept his mouth shut, and never blinked.

It doesn’t mean he’s not a criminal crook who will burn in hell for eternity, but as far as lawyers go, Gonzo did really good.

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By Mordechai Shiblikov, December 12, 2007 at 2:27 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Since lawyers frequently turn out to be the swine they are commonly portrayed as, making Gonzales Shyster of the Year 2007 is entirely appropriate.

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By TAO Walker, December 12, 2007 at 2:26 pm Link to this comment

This old Indian wonders just what it is about the ABA Journal’s “criteria” that could still be even remotely in-doubt at this point.  Then again, theamericanpeople’ve gotten so accustomed to the “message” that it’s something other than shit their collective noses are being rubbed-in, hoping it might really be roses after all has evidently become virtually reflexive amongst ‘em.


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brewerstroupe's avatar

By brewerstroupe, December 12, 2007 at 2:13 pm Link to this comment

Lawyer of the Year!

Excuse me. I seem to have wandered into some kind of parallel universe. I’m going to have a long drink of water and re-start my computer.

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