“It is possible to fail in many ways....” —Aristotle
22 May 2010
When he’s not presiding at the New York City Civil Court or teaching at Columbia Law School, Judge Gerald Lebovits somehow finds time to write. And one of his favorite topics is legal writing.
A little known fact: about 50% of the litigants who appear before Judge Lebovits lose. Having seen so many losers, he’s learned a thing or two about how to write a losing brief. So in the tradition of Judge Alex Kozinski’s The Wrong Stuff, Judge Lebovits presents his own tips for those who strive for the kind of perfection achieved by the 1976 Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Rich Little’s version of Richard Nixon said after winning the 1968 presidential election, “Well, you can’t lose them all.” But if you’re perverse enough, you can try.
One way to fail: misspell Aristotle’s name, as I did when I first posted this.