Framing the Dialogue

I Am From The Government – Try to Fire Me

Now that I am no longer a government employee I feel very comfortable criticizing government employees.  Actually I have always been comfortable criticizing government employees only now I cannot get in trouble…

I recently was honored to witness one of my former colleagues speak at a conference for technical people.  This person is not an technical person, but a lawyer.  The presentation was to provide information on common problems so that they can avoided by the attendees.  The attendees paid to attend the conference. 

In the interest of full disclosure, I really did not care much for this attorney when I worked at the agency.  I was “fortunate” to attend another of her presentations to a group of local, county, and state officials.  This attorney is a state employee yet felt comfortable spending a few minutes blasting a local state senator for her stand on a position that was obviously opposite to viewpoint of the left-leaning lawyer.  What are you going to do fire the lawyer?

It may be redundant to suggest that this attorney was arrogant.  This attorney spent the first 15 minutes of the allotted 45 minutes talking about personal accomplishments.  It may have been longer, but I think that I got dizzy a few times from rolling my eyes.  Among the accomplishments touted was the fact the resume consisted only of working for government in a career lasting over 20 years.  This was a proud accomplishment and bragged that “private lawyers make money, government lawyers make laws.”  Here I thought that legislatures made laws.  What are you going to do fire the lawyer?

One of the quaint stories centered around an early case in a less populated (rural) part of the state.  The local citizens were described as having trucks with gun racks carrying guns.  It was obvious to me that this description was meant to interfere a lower intelligence and acceptance of lax environmental conditions.  I should mention that the workshop was held in a rural area.  What are you going to do fire the lawyer?

My guess is that "litigators" buy these for themselves.

This lawyer bragged about being a “litigator” which I guess is lawyer-speak for bad-ass.  I was not impressed since I know how many cases they toss and hand pick the ones they litigate.  Another attorney/litigator had the reputation of settling every case before trial.  The only people that feared our government lawyers were folks who could not afford decent lawyers of their own.  

Just when I thought the arrogance was subsiding the attorney began to discuss a cross examination of a witness.  The witness was a technical person who was subjected to a cross examination that “made him run to the restroom during a break and throw up.”  The lawyer bragged that the previous “standard” for a cross examination was simply to make witness cry, but now it was to make them vomit.  I think that this was meant as a sort of a veiled threat wrapped as a joke, but all that I remembered was silence.  What are you going to do fire the lawyer?

I have to ask what type of person brags about harassing someone to the point of making them vomit?  Even if the person was a bad guy, is it not enough to make them lose?  Is it any wonder why businesses and citizens have a negative image of government?  Is it any wonder why folks may not want to work with government? 

What are you going to do fire the lawyer?

Leave a comment

Use basic HTML (<a href="">, <strong>, <blockquote>)