OVERWATCHING CNN'S CORONA VIRUS COVERAGE 
Friday, April 17, 2020, 09:07 AM
Posted by Administrator
...and, it may be I saw this on another network. Here is it: A doctor, from somewhere, discussing the White House's fake facts said, more or less: THERE ARE TWO WAYS OF LOOKING AT THINGS, THE SCIENTIFIC WAY----WHERE YOU FOLLOW THE EVIDENCE WHEREVER IT LEADS AND THE LAWYER WAY---WHERE YOU DECIDE THE RESULT YOU WANT AND THEN LOOK FOR SUPPORT FOR THAT. I thought to myself at the time "That's not how lawyers do things." Then, I thought again.

TV shows (both factual and fictional) are full of stories where the police focused on someone, ignored exculpatory evidence, arrested the subject of their focus and had them prosecuted....though someone else committed the crime. The job of a criminal defense lawyer is exactly to come up with a theory supporting the idea that their (guilty) client didn't do it.

Civil lawyers frequently try to sell unsupported stories to juries and judges: the car accident wasn't my client's fault, the husband abused the kids, she hasn't been able to work since she fell. Usually, the lawyer only knows what her/his client has told them.

Lawyers have an ethical obligation not to lie to the court and not to allow clients to lie. Most of us don't. But, on the other hand, a note to people involved in litigation: ALL TOO OFTEN, THE TRUTH DOESN'T MATTER-------ALL THAT MATTERS IS HOW CONVINCING IS THE OTHER SIDE.

Over the years...and, somewhere in the blog.....I have written about studies showing that very few people (including---especially?---judges) can spot a lie. And, in the current (political) climate, it isn't clear that lying is still considered to be a bad thing.

As the Sergeant said at the end of roll call on HILL STREET BLUES, an 80s TV cop show where almost everyone tried to be good and honest (and, which began and ended with appropriately melancholy theme music) "Be careful out there".


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