March 20, 1966
Mr. Malcolm K. McClintock
958 N. Penn, Apt. 105
Indianapolis, Indiana 46280
Dear Mr. McClintock:
Thank you for your letter of February 27.
The question you ask cannot be answered in the Intellectual Ammunition Department of The Objectivist, because it does not involve a general principle, but seems to be based on a misconception of your own. Therefore, I will make an exception and answer you by mail, rather than have you wait to see an answer in our magazine.
You ask: “What goods are produced by an attorney? It seems to me that the value of the legal profession is created by man, rather than derived from the needs of man.”
The value of the legal profession is derived from the social needs of man. Since men need objective laws in order to live in a free, civilized society, they need the advice of lawyers, that is, of specialists trained professionally in that field.
The practice of the legal profession has been inflated out of proportion and distorted by today’s mixed economy. But this is true of most professions today. However, in a proper free society, lawyers have a legitimate and important role to play.