The Origin of the Species

I’m a little too old for a mid-life crisis, but not too old, I hope, to admit that I’ve been wandering far too long in the dark wood of error. So let me cut to the chase: Individualism is dead; we are social creatures.
The rhetoric of individualism has sustained me for decades. It...

Obama's Disappointing Response to Ferguson

It will take more than the Band-Aid President Barack Obama offers to staunch the bleeding wound caused by the police violence in Ferguson, Mo. The fact of the matter is the events in Ferguson reflect a broader crisis in legitimacy, a crisis brought about in large part by the federal...

The Market in Human Souls

I sometimes wonder whether the truth really matters at all, especially in criminal courtrooms, where we play at the solemn work of justice while wearing blinders. Consider, for the moment, the case of State v. Dr. Lishan Wang, now percolating in the New Haven Superior Court. In what parallel...

The Other Victim in Ferguson

There’s little doubt in my mind that the grand jury in Ferguson, Missouri, will not indict Darren Wilson and charge him with murder. And there is just as little doubt that Ferguson will erupt in violence when that happens. Two conceptions of justice will collide, thus illustrating in graphic...

King v. Burwell: A Ridiculous Attack on Obamacare

The Roman orator Cicero defined a commonwealth, or a republic, as a group of people drawn together by common interests and a common conception of right, or justice. In other words, not just any group of folks constitutes a stable political entity.
By this standard, we are no longer a...

Why Law Is Not Medicine

From time to time, a young person turns up at my office door looking for career advice. They are considering a career in the law. What, they ask, should they do? My answer is typically succinct: consider medical school. The law, I tell them is dark place. I’ve imagined that medicine offers...

Tommy the Tax Dodger Unfit for Office

If I had Tom Foley’s tax accountant, there is one thing I most assuredly would not do: I would not run for public office pretending I had any idea about what is and is not sound public policy. Foley lives as a free-rider, avoiding taxes while living like a plutocrat. Why would anyone vote for...

Whose Best Interest Served in Child Custody Cases?

There are secret courts operating in our midst, and I am not referring to those tribunals whose focus is national security. I’m talking about something more basic and closer to home. I’m talking about our juvenile courts, where the fate of children is sometimes...

A "Special Agent" Files Suit

I'm not a fan of the Justice Department, so I ought to be rooting for Kurt Siuzdak, a 17-year veteran of the Federal Bureau of Investigation who has filed suit against Attorney General Eric Holder. Instead, I'm wondering just what he is hoping to accomplish. My hunch is that he is angling for a job...

Excited Utterances

The law of evidence governs what is and is not admissible in a trial. A judge’s decision on what a jury hears could quite literally be the difference between freedom and imprisonment, and, in some cases, between life and death. Just ask Larry Johnson.
Earlier this year, Brittany Paz,...

About Norm Pattis

Norm Pattis is a Connecticut based trial lawyer focused on high stakes criminal cases and civil right violations. He is a veteran of more than 100 jury trials, many resulting in acquittals for people charged with serious crimes, multi-million dollar civil rights and discrimination verdicts, and scores of cases favorably settled.

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I believe that the state is a necessary fiction and that failing to combat it is the first step toward tyranny.
– Norm Pattis


Nothing in this blog should be considered legal advice about your case. You need a lawyer who understands the context of your life and situation. What are offered here are merely suggested lines of inquiry you may explore with your lawyer.

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