Monday, June 01, 2009

May Post of the Month

Sometimes a blog post strikes a particular chord, and you think: 'Yes, of course, why didn't I write that?' Such was the case when I came across the post 'Fuzzy Logic', written by James Gross of the Maryland Divorce Legal Crier (love that name). Often, over the years, I have had clients of a 'logical persuasion' (scientists, bankers, accountants etc.) who have clearly expected me to come up with a definitive answer to their problems. Alas, I have to explain, family law does not work like that: there is often no 'definitive' answer to a problem, just a series of possibilities. This is what James has posted about, somewhat more elegantly than me, and the post wins my May Post of the Month award. I shall have to remember the Heisenberg uncertainty principle next time...

The prize? A virtual subscription to Scientific American, for James to display prominently in his reception area, just to prove to clients that he is not averse to a bit of logic himself.


  1. As someone with a foot in both camps, I will take issue with this. Accountants are extremely familiar with the absence of a single or definitve answer; an accountant would know it as the concept of materiality.

    Havinmg worked in an international firm full of hundreds of lawyers and accountants, the commonality of imprecision is seen with lawyers (those who are numerate, anyway) and accountants (the few who can string some words together) and how they can transfer from one discipline to another with ease.

    The essential difference (which is not always present, but which often is) is that accountants are called upon themselves to sign off on the imprecision, whereas lawyers (in the context in which you are writing) will have someone else, i.e., a judge, perform that function.

  2. Hi BB,

    I bow to your greater knowledge of accountancy! I don't think James meant quite literally every accountant/scientist/banker etc. Certainly, I took it as a metaphor for all of those clients who expect definitive answers, some of whom happen to be accountants!



  3. John:

    Thanks for the award! It is hard work we do and the awards are all too few. You made my day. I would like to post the award on my blog if that's ok with you.


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