Bobby Lee Cook (purportedly the model for "Matlock," don't miss reading a terrific ABAJournal profile at the link), --was reprimanded in an Order of the Georgia Supreme Court. Apparently Judge Choose-a-Last-Name is an arrogant and obnoxious jurist in person. She is spectacularly disrespectful to other lawyers, law enforcement and public servants. Not news, folks--this is pretty common. What's not common is when the Judge lets his or her law license lapse and continues to act as a Judge!
That's amazing! What's really unusual is that the various states make it easy as pie for Judges to obtain their continuing legal education requirements while lawyers have to go to considerable inconvenience. Judges get paid while attending these "cle" classes. Usually cle coursework is free to our public servants. Lawyers on the other hand use their own time and money to get into compliance. While you can see how someone could inadvertently let a deadline slip, in OurState, a computer kicks out your name and you are publically suspended unitl you pay a small penalty and bring yourself into compliance. That this Georgia situation could happen really raises some startling issues--like: are the matters for which Judge Choose-a-Last-Name issued orders, valid? Five years!
This made me reflect on double standards in OurTown. Here there is a major courthouse named after a famous politician who ended his career on the local bench despite being busted on one or more occasions for shop-lifting. There is also a Law School named after another famous lawyer/rainmaker who notably forgot to bring his license into compliance. Some lawyers pay, some lawyers pay more, and some lawyers get buildings named after them.