Clerkships, Federal Judges, Judge of the Day, Judicial Divas

Iowa Judge Warns Prospective Clerks Not To Expect A ‘Balanced’ Life

Who says the Midwest is more laid back than the coasts? Who says Midwesterners are more polite than people who live in big cities? Who says working in a place like Iowa affords a higher quality of life and a better work/life balance than working in a place like Chicago?

Not United States District Court Judge Mark Bennett. No sir.

We’ve written about Judge Bennett before. He’s a funny guy. The last time we saw him, he was expressing his personal bias against “East Coast law firms,” in part because he think big city lawyers possess “unsurpassed arrogance.”

But Judge Bennett might be selling himself short. I don’t think the average East Coast lawyer’s arrogance even approaches what His Honor rolls with…

According to Iowa independent weekly Cityview, Judge Bennett has started his search for a new group of clerks. He’s sent a job description to Iowa law schools that is really the kind of job listing we’ve come to expect from Craigslist:

I am looking for a clerk that is willing to work harder than they have ever worked in their life in exchange for learning more than they have ever learned…. If they are one of those life must be balanced folks please don’t waste my time and don’t bother applying. A routine cover letter won’t even get on my radar screen — straight into the trash can. They need to demonstrate in the cover letter that they think outside the box. A 10-word plan to capture Osama Bin Laden without violating international law would be perfect.

Threaten Bin Laden with Bennett recordings and demand unconditional surrender?

On a lighter note, Judge Bennett continues:

Must like Vietnamese food and also have a healthy dose of skepticism toward authority. Distrust of government power a huge plus…. A tattoo that says ‘Question authority while it is still lawful’ may get an interview. I am very serious!!!!

Well, I’m skeptical of any authority who tells me I’m not allowed to have a life, but I don’t need to put a tattoo on my ass to prove that I am very serious!!!!

That said, if there are Iowa law students who always wondered what it would be like working for self-important Biglaw partners in New York or California, clerking for Judge Bennett sounds like a perfect starting point.

GOP and labor, Judge Bennett (again), Van Gogh and Bin Laden [Cityview]

Earlier: Judge of the Day: Judge Mark Bennett of Iowa Is ‘Underwhelmed’ By East Coast Law Firms

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