Page:The Green Bag (1889–1914), Volume 25.pdf/519

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page needs to be proofread.

The Legal Monthly Analysis of Leading Legal Events Procedural reform is receiving much attention, particularly in Missouri. There are indications in certain states, for instance Missouri, Texas, Alabama and New Mexico, that reversals and new trials on technical errors are re garded with very different feelings from formerly. The president of the Missouri Bar Association, in his annual address, while he urged that procedure be simpli fied and rendered more expeditious, said: "I believe that the number of judges should be increased in every jurisdiction until the judges can clear our dockets and give every litigant a hearing in thirty or sixty days after an action is instituted. Moreover, our courts are so crowded by litigants that cases are not always tried as carefully as they should be. "A hurried trial is a grievous wrong to both litigants. "Many decisions are reversed sole ly because the judge has had a con gested docket to dispose of, with liti gants clamoring for trials, and has not had sufficient time to carefully consider each case." Such an utterance voices a typical attitude. If procedure is really to be simplified, it would seem as if the way to do it would be to put the burden of expeditious and effective justice on the shoulders of the bench and bar, where it belongs. If speed and accuracy cannot be combined, it can be only because the bench and the bar are too weak to bear the burden; we need, not more judges, but stronger judges — assuming that the bar has the requisite efficiency. What the London Times says about


our procedure being "enmeshed in technicalities" is too sweeping, in the light of many recent developments. In fully half the states, there is a strong counter-tendency already. As the National Corporation Reporter says (Sept. 4), "It is a matter of everyday occurence, in scanning the reports, to find such deliverances as the following: 'In this the trial court erred, but as the verdict and judgment are in accordance with the manifest justice of the case, we do not feel justified in setting them aside.'" No doubt the adequate preparation of candidates for admission to the bar is receiving a great deal more attention now than ever before. One of the most significant and important of recent developments is undoubtedly the in vestigation of American law schools lately undertaken by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. Personal Hon. William H. Taft is to deliver a course of lectures on Professional Ethics at Boston University Law School this winter. The re-appointment of Rome G. Brown of Minneapolis, as chairman of the American Bar Association's com mittee to oppose the judicial recall, was announced by Hon. William H. Taft Oct. 6. Judge Taft said the appoint ment was made to insure the continued and increased efficiency of the most important committee of the association and in recognition of the work organized and carried out last year by Mr. Brown as its chairman.