Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Ethics of the Lawyers

Well, I don't have much nice to say about lawyer's ethics, but in this case the discussion gives some perspective on the "torture" memos. (h/t Powerline)
Government lawyers in the Department of Justice's Office of Professional Responsibility (OPR) appear to have leaked to the press parts of a confidential--and classified--draft report concerning the actions of Bush administration lawyers. The report calls for state bar associations to investigate, and perhaps discipline, attorneys who provided sensitive legal advice to President Bush's administration concerning the legal limits of coercive interrogation methods against high-level al Qaeda terrorists. That advice was, of course, controversial. It is now, in the current political climate, highly unpopular in certain circles. OPR has determined, apparently, that it was "unethical" to give it and that the lawyers involved should be punished.

How many things are wrong with this picture? From the perspective of legal ethics, constitutional law, and good government, I count at least five big problems.

You can read the rest for yourself.

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