Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Are Law Societies the world's most powerful trade union like the Teamsters but without baseball bats? ..... And is the Canadian Judicial Council irrelevant?

Good Day Readers:

Received the following e-mail the other day from Vancouver-based Chris "Mr. Googles" Budgell with the fascinating Subject Line, Coming Soon: Inviting the World to the Douglas Inquiry.
"Mr. Googles"

In 2009 the President of the Law Society of British Columbia, Gordon Turriff gave a speech in Perth Australia that the LSBC subsequently posted online:


With an introductory statement by Chief Justice Finch and then one by Mr. Turriff that ends with this provocative line:

"The Australian regulators met in Perth in September and I joined them for a very interesting two days.The days were interesting for me because the arrangements for lawyer regulation in Australia are very different from what they are in Canada. Starkly different: And as I argued, not protective of the rule of law. Here is my Australian speech."

He said that the Australians do not enjoy the rule of law and then proceeded to explain how we in British Columbia do it.

I have long thought of writing to the Australians to set the record straight. Now the opportunity has appeared. The Law Reform Commission of Western Australia (in Perth) is inviting submissions to this discussion paper


the deadline being December 7. The paper includes a summary and flowchart of the Canadian Judicial Council's complaints process I will endeavour to correct.

Chris J. Budgell

Dear Mr. Googles:
Thank you for sharing your knowledge with CyberSmokeBlog readers.

Ready to make a deal ..... eh? If you tender a submission to The Law Reform Commission of Western Australia while "slipping in" honourable mention of CSB it will:

(1) Publish it

(2) E-mail copies to CyberSmokeBlog's many contacts in Manitoba's mainstream media, as well as, The National Post's Christie Blatchford and Steve Lambert of the Globe and Mail

(3) Send copies to our "Dear Senior Management Friends" at the Law Society of Manitoba

How say you? Do we have a deal ..... well do we?

As you are undoubtedly aware, jurisdictions such as Britain, the United States and Australia have different business models for Law Societies (or whatever it is they choose to call them) than Canada's archaic, caveman Stone Age example. Essentially, the self-regulatory function has been externalized.

Perhaps the last word should go to lawyer and author Philip Slayton.who penned Lawyers Gone Bad: Money, Sex And Madness In Canada's Legal Profession, as well as, Mighty Judgment.
In an August 6, 2007 interview with MacLean's Magazine at Page 20 Paragraph 5 he stated while speaking of Law Societies he described as "Flaw Societies":

"If they decide you're a transgressor, the'll prosecute you, they'll hire a lawyer to do that, and the disciplinary committee itself is the law society. So you have the investigator, the prosecutor and the judge all essentially representing the same institution. I though in this country we had a fundamental principle, that the person who investigates and prosecutes isn't the same person who judges."
Left to right lawyers Messrs I Pad My Bills, I'm Dishonest, I Sleep With My Clients, Ms I Take Bribes and Mr. Justice? Ha!

Clare L. Pieuk


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