Tilting at Windmills

March/April 2012 Jaded about the JD

By Charles Peters

As for the cost of a legal education, David Segal of the New York Times has recently described how existing law schools are controlling the accreditation process to keep out their lower-cost competitors, and John O. McGinnis and Russell D. Mangas argue in a Wall Street Journal op-ed that two years of law school, not the three presently required, are “enough to understand the essentials of the law.” They join Segal in pointing out that lowering the cost of law school means more lawyers who don’t have to pay back huge loans and thus can charge lower fees, meaning in turn more legal services for the average man who can’t afford $300 an hour.

Charles Peters is the founding editor of the Washington Monthly and the author of a new book on Lyndon B. Johnson published by Times Books.