You may remember Judge Magoo who went on the front page of the NY Law Journal twice to announce his resignation from the Appellate Division because he couldn’t make ends meet on $160K a year, even with special funding for robe cleaning. He was rescued from starvation by the prestigious firm of Flywheel Shyster Flywheel where he’s now trying his hand at appellate squawking – a steep learning curve for someone who’s only done prosecution appeals. We imagine him now as one of those white shoe lawyers at oral argument who the judges fall all over themselves to thank for so generously donating their valuable time to one indigent criminal case.
Imagine our surprise when we recently heard on good authority from someone who’d heard on good authority who’d heard on good authority who’d heard – anyway, when we heard – that Judge Magoo had talked about a bill now pending before the NY Legislature prohibiting appellate judges from insulting lawyers at oral argument. Long overdue! was our reaction, and to hell with the separation of powers. But who could have so courageously proposed this brilliant, much-needed, justice-at-last legislation?
Searching the Legislature’s website until our eyes glazed over, using every phrase and keyword we could think of from “gang assault” to “gibbering jelly,” we discovered bills to regulate dogleash lengths, extend farm subsidies to owners of more than one turtle, relocate Times Square to Central Park, prohibit sex offenders from breathing – but nothing about oral argument.
Turns out it was a gag and we fell for it. Hahahahahahah. But life has a way of overtaking parody. Someday there will be a Magoo’s Law. . .