And we know that Abraham Lincoln, a pretty good country lawyer, felt that way as well.
He instructed lawyers to "discourage litigation." He said, "Persuade your neighbors to compromise whenever you can…as a peacemaker, the lawyer has a superior opportunity to be a good man." (And, I'm sure Lincoln would say today, "or a good woman.") "And there will still be business enough to make a good living."
Mediation is also "good" in a larger sense, far beyond the good of your client.
To individuals like myself and others who have had the opportunity to be in the political arena for a while where laws are conceived and implemented and all the problems of society are weighed and balanced, mediation is well-recognized as representing a spirit and an intelligence that we need badly as a nation now.
I think it's apparent to most observers of our wounded political system that our nation is crippled at the momentnot because the federal government and some state and municipal governments are virtually, or even literally, bankrupt; and not because our democratic system is rotting; and not because we lack intelligent leaders and representatives, but because we have been hobbled and occasionally crippled, by a clash of rigid, inflexible ideologists and ideologues.
We appear to have lost intelligent suppleness and the ability to deal with all of our tragic mismatches of resources and opportunities, needs and burdens.
And the conflicts between owners and workers, cities and suburbs, the haves and have nots, the insured and the uninsured: all imperfections that make our democracy less strong than it ought to be.
And so as a lawyer, I have concluded that the best way to resolve disputesindividual, corporate, marital and socialis to mediate or use some other alternate devices.
There is abundant proof that is the best way to govern as well.
Just look back to the late 90s. The so-called "Clinton Years."