Much Like the Real “Boston Legal,” This Boston Legal is not Funny

Everyone knows the legal market sucks. Students pony up $150K with no guarantee–wait, fuck guarantee, prospect–that they’ll ever be able to pay it back, the ABA continues to accredit the educational equivalents of aborted fetuses, and even the lucky douchebags that get into HYS (that’s Harvard-Yale-Stanford, the perennial top 3 in the rankings) have difficulties landing those plum jobs that grant some measure of financial freedom.

Yet before now the market was more like a speedy subway frottage and less like an outright teabagging. Alas, some balls are coming your way:

The BBJ received an emailed tip this week from someone who says they’re an employed, Boston College Law School (BC Law) graduate. The tipster sent screen grabs of a job listing on BC Law’s career site. The post advertises a full-time associate position at a small Boston law firm, Gilbert & O’Bryan LLP, paying just $10,000 per year. (That’s $10K, it’s not a typo.)

Larry O’Bryan, one of the firm’s partners, said he’s received about 32 applications for the $10K per year job, since posting it one week ago. He said that while the pay is low, the lawyer who is eventually hired will gain valuable experience.

That’s right, a full-time associate’s position will yield you a whopping $10K per year. But cheer up! They offer a “clothing allowance,” which probably means that they’ll buy you some ties at Target (Penney’s if you were cum laude!). Also experience, which in this context constitutes the experience of a demoralization so great that your soul will literally fall dead from your ass while you’re arguing a third-rate tort claim before a judge who just wants to get back to his ham and mayonnaise dinner.

The tipster, a recent grad of BC Law employed outside the Massachusetts legal market, calculated the hourly rate at $4.81, which is well below the minimum wage in Massachusetts. As he also pointed out, the janitors that work at BC Law will make much more than this, and it’s pretty likely BC Law didn’t make them fork over a couple hundred grand for their training in toilet-scrubbing and floor-mopping.

To anyone reading this and still considering law school, I have these words of advice: you’re a dumbass, and will never practice the kind of law that will remunerate you for your investment. Because you’re a dumbass.

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So You’re Going to Go to a For-Profit College

Well, right off the bat I should let you know that you’re a fucking idiot, and that because you’re a fucking idiot, you’re unlikely to understand the gist of what’s to follow. Therefore, I suggest that you find someone who did not waste their time, energy, and money on a degree from a for-profit college or university to explain this to you. You might try looking at places where people are employed. You know, a “job,” that thing you don’t have because you went to ITT. I’m just kidding, no one has a job! But there’s probably a smart homeless guy in the library where you’re reading this; maybe he’ll help you out. Just let him finish wanking to vintage copies of National Geographic first.

1. It’s unlikely that you’ll graduate.

Yes, the degree in “Information Systems and Cybersecurity” that you covet so much will probably never be conferred, though you will be forced to repay the $150,000 it cost to find out you couldn’t even make your way through a lackluster for-profit curriculum. What little information exists on graduation rates points to the likelihood that you’re on the hook for a ton of cash, and you possess nothing but non-transferable credits.

2. Even if you manage to graduate, you’ll never earn enough to repay your loans.

Hooray, you finished! Your diploma says B.B.A. and now you’re ready to tackle the job market in Milwaukee. But wait, you’re going to love this–even if you manage to find a job, it’s unlikely you’ll earn enough to pay back the monstrous amount you borrowed to finance your degree. Meanwhile, the guys who went to UW Milwaukee (and paid about $30K less than you) are going on their fifth weekend trip to Chicago this year! With Russian strippers! Too bad you had to take that second job; Bob from sales said Svetlana really liked you!

3. You’re supporting organizations that rip off veterans.

That’s right, your unfinished degree in “Video Game Design” says that you hate the troops. And do you know what people do to guys who hate the troops? That shit ain’t pretty. For-profit colleges have recently come under scrutiny for abusing the benefits that veterans earn for their service. Private services called “lead generators” flood veterans with calls and collect information which they then sell to for-profit colleges. Then, the for-profit colleges entice the veterans with a flashy sales pitch and reap the reward of a fat, government-funded payday. I hope you feel good about yourself, asshole.

4. You’re ruining education in America.

As if your casual disregard for the welfare of veterans wasn’t enough, your blindly stupid channeling of federal dollars into organizations that give little to nothing back to the American public is ruining education for the rest of us. Why? Because while community colleges (and their portable credits) are cutting services and raising tuition, these bloated diploma-mills are siphoning off the sweet loan milk from the government’s bloated teat.

5. In addition to ruining education in America, you’re adding evidence to the argument that every consumer in this country is a hapless turd, unable to find useful information or conduct reasoned analysis.

You see, if you were able to conduct research, you would have realized that you probably live in a state, and the state where you live probably has a university system, and that university system confers degrees in every area that a for-profit college does, and does so at a FUCKING FRACTION OF THE PRICE YOU GODDAMNED WITLESS PIECE OF GARBAGE. Let’s go back to the Milwaukee example. It took me roughly 5 minutes to find out that if you attend one of the ITTs in Milwaukee and earn a B.B.A. it will cost you over $30K more than if you attended the University of Milwaukee. And do you know what? If you actually manage to finish, the person hiring you will probably be an alum of UW Milwaukee! And they’ll think to themselves “what the fuck is wrong with this asshole? How could I possibly trust someone so fucking stupid with any aspect of my business” And they’ll be dead fucking right.

Robert: “Hi, Ned–I Sure Could Use Your Help Rebelling Against the Mad King. How About it?” Accept?

That’s right, folks–Game of Thrones is coming to Facebook. Game design firm Disruptor Beam recently announced it had a license to develop a game for Facebook based on A Game of Thrones:

In Game of Thrones Ascent players will lead the life of a noble during the time of upheaval as portrayed in the books and the series thus experiencing a new type of game that unites both story and strategy. Players will claim their birthright by choosing which of the great houses they’ll swear allegiance to, securing their holdings, developing their lands and personal reputation, and assigning sworn swords to quests–while forging alliances with new friends and much more!

Better still, Disruptor Beam is accepting registrations for the beta version! So get out there and bolster your stores, because winter is coming, and you can’t always rely on your stingy Facebook friends to gift you wheat.

According to David Brooks, Romneybot is More Like Edward and Less Like Dracula

Once again, that bloated sack of Burkean bon mots has come out swinging against those who would seek to defile the good name of private equity:

Forty years ago, corporate America was bloated, sluggish and losing ground to competitors in Japan and beyond. But then something astonishing happened. Financiers, private equity firms and bare-knuckled corporate executives initiated a series of reforms and transformations.

The process was brutal and involved streamlining and layoffs. But, at the end of it, American businesses emerged leaner, quicker and more efficient.

Apparently the last forty years of American capitalism was like a season of The Biggest Loser; muscular capitalists yelled at weak and flabby businesses and eventually turned the American economy into something you wouldn’t be ashamed to bang.

But those damned Democrats just released an ad besmirching the reputation of Bain Capital (they weren’t founded by the Batman villain, in case you’re curious) by calling into question their handling of GST, a failing metalworks:

The company was in terminal decline before Bain entered the picture, seeing its work force fall from 4,500 to less than 1,000. It faced closure when Romney and Bain, for some reason, saw hope for it in 1993. Bain acquired it, induced banks to loan it money and poured $100 million into modernization, according to Strassel. Bain held onto the company for eight years, hardly the pattern of a looter. Finally, after all the effort, the company, like many other old-line steel companies, filed for bankruptcy protection in 2001, two years after Romney had left Bain.

This is the story of a failed rescue, not vampire capitalism.

You see, Democrats? Bain is more charity than anything else; besides, Romneybot left the Bain heezy before GST crashed and burned! And he probably had no effect on policy, so as soon as he left, Bain was like, “who the fuck was that guy”? This is some solid-ass logic, Brooks.

Of course, Brooks can’t write a column without shifting from the concrete to the abstract, or without mentioning a fancy study conducted by someone in the Ivy League; therefore, we have this half-assed justification for private equity:

This process involves a great deal of churn and creative destruction. It does not, on net, lead to fewer jobs. A giant study by economists from the University of Chicago, Harvard, the University of Maryland and the Census Bureau found that when private equity firms acquire a company, jobs are lost in old operations. Jobs are created in new, promising operations. The overall effect on employment is modest.

Hey, if a guy from the University of Chicago said that the throbbing knob of venture capitalism and private equity is a good thing for America’s middle-class, unlubricated anus, then it must be! Because that school has no history of capitalist stoogery.

Perhaps the most interesting feature of this essay is the way that it elides several key points. For instance, what does the study classify as a “modest” effect on employment? Is 25% modest? Or perhaps 30%? I do not consider the absence of 30% of a company’s labor force to be modest, especially when you consider that 30% as a contributor to the local economy. Here’s another gem:

Most of the time they succeed. Research from around the world clearly confirms that companies that have been acquired by private equity firms are more productive than comparable firms.

What is the precise number for “most of the time”? Did Brooks say “most” because 51% isn’t the hotness? You know, now that I think about it, that quote is an excellent summation of Brooks’s writing for the Times:

Most of the time he succeeds. Readers from around the world clearly confirm that conservative essayists for the New York Times that are named David Brooks are more productive than comparable essayists.

Also, Team Bain for the win!

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