New benchmark

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Changes just passed by the UK parliament mean that, for the first time, applicants for the post of England’s top judge must complete an 18-page application form, endure an interview and write an essay on a subject yet to be decided.

Thankfully, those dastardly
innovations will never taint how Scotland selects its judges.

From antiquity, we have been served by many selfless lawyers steeped in the polymath traditions (as experienced by many clients) that shaped the distinct nature of Scotland’s legal system: pomposity; arrogance; ineptitude; narcissism; incoherence; untenable advice; ineffectual advocacy; and a riveting flair 
for diabolical materialism (a fiendish accountancy technique that facilitates the compilation of legal fees that would shiver the timbers of a very burly 
oligarch). Blessed with such a lush landscape of ability,
Scotland can smugly ignore the English route to transparency in the law.

Time travel will be a dawdle before Scotland’s prospective judges have to endure the indignity of coping with the demands of an application form, an interview and an essay that reflects a capacity for coherent thinking.

Thomas Crooks

Edinburgh