Max Gardner and Billy Beane

From Boot Camper Bruce Magness:

Campers — Seeing “Moneyball” will make you appreciate Max Gardner even more!Last time I posted to recommend a best movie was “Hurt Locker” right after it came out.  This time I write of “Moneyball,” with Brad Pitt. It is based on the true story of Billy Beane, GM of the Oakland Athletics.  But it is not just a baseball movie. When Billy Beane learns that a talented computer analyst has learned things never before dreampt in baseball circles, he studies them, gets the best info he can, organizes and implements, so that his Oakland Athletics (payroll max of $40 million) in a small market situation, playing baseball in the summer in the Oakland Coliseum, a football palace, and losing their best players to the big market teams (eg NY Yankees, etc.) as soon as they blossom — begin to compete with big boys, at one-third the payroll.

The word spreads, slowly but finally to the point that the Boston Red Sox offer him $12.5 million to change jobs — and he stays where he is, at Oakland, fighting to prove that with careful obedience to the new rules of winning baseball, even  a small market team has a chance to win it all. His team is back down in the standings now. But Billy is still fighting the big boys, and the game of baseball has changed forever, and even though the big boys can still sometimes buy the World Series with the best players, they can no longer turn their heads on the small market teams, if the small market teams learn Billy’s rules.

Oh, and the Red Sox, the year they finally won the pennant, was two years after Billy turned them down, and they began to implement his new rules. (Apparently the fell back into the old ideas this year) Is Billy not Max Gardner in a baseball uniform? Is Max not changing the entire landscape of the defense of debtors against mortgage lender and other creditor abuse?Are we not witnesses to a remarkable transformation, wherein talented lawyers who have the stamina, and are willing to learn new rules, can stand toe-to-toe and fight with the biggest and most powerful banks, notwithstanding the general mood of the judiciary to look out for the vested interests? Since I met Max at camp, I have been saying Max Gardner is the Ralph Nader of the Defense Against Predatory Mortgage Lending Practices. Now I  add “and he is Billy Beane Against the Yankees.”The best thing is, Max did not hide his secrets under a blanket, but continues to expose those who will listen to the message, spreading the word, raising the level of argument and discourse, in favor of justice for the common man.

Go see “Moneyball!” And then continue the uphill battle for Max Gardner and the common man!

Max’s Response:

I have not seen the movie but I will based on your endorsement and my love of baseball.  I also appreciate your kind and generous comments but I simply cannot take that much credit. 

Our success has been the result of many, many great attorneys who have taken our collective knowledge and data to their respective courts and fought the good fight.  Sometimes we lose and sometimes we win but we never, ever give up.  If one of us is knocked down, then ALL of us are there to pick that person up to fight another day.  Our power and our success cannot be attributed to any one person but to all of us working together for the same objective—to save our system of justice from the abuse and fraud that the other side keeps employing in every single consumer case. 

Sure, we want to protect our clients and provide them with the legal relief they deserve; but the bigger objective is to preserve our system  of due process, of following the rules, of playing fair with the facts of your case, and of trying to create a level playing field for all parties.  And, quite frankly, the thing that keeps me going is the fact that we in fact are winning.  It is hard.  It is difficult.  If is frustrating.  But, if you pick out the top 20 consumer cases decided this year then you will also find that 14 of those 20 cases involved Boot Campers.  These are all wins. 

A $500.00 settlement from Citibank is a win just like a $50,000 settlement check from Ocwen.  I am very proud of the work product of the Boot Campers.  Very proud.  And, one irony about the movie “Moneyball” is that my late Uncle Ralph would always tell me that “at the end of the day every case you will ever have will always be about the money, always about the money; and,  if you follow the money to the end of the line you will find the true facts that will allow you to win or settle all of those cases.”