What, if anything, is wrong with this idea?
Given that the legal profession is already heavily regulated, and given that socialised provision already exists in the form of legal aid, why should we tolerate the practice of receiving money in return for legal respresentation?
(Obviously the ideal would be to ‘socialise’, with ‘nationalise’ being the slightly perverted statist version of that, but it makes a catchier title so nevermind)
The legal system is already, in almost all other areas, publically run and funded – judges don’t get paid by plaintiffs, police aren’t paid by victims of crime, prisons aren’t run for profit, are they?
(Well actually, half the time they are – private security companies, privatised prisons, that case where the privatised prison paid the judge to sentence young offenders to incarceration, etc. But we have a sneaking suspicion that this isn’t actually the best way to run a justice system)
So surely it’s appalling that those able to hire better lawyers enjoy such an advantage. Surely it’s absurd that the rich can afford to go to court, can afford to seek legal redress, and the poor can’t. Why not have a legal system which is designed from the ground up to exclude financial considerations as much as possible from its workings? Rather like the NHS, an NLS.
Note though, that unlike with public schools and public hospitals, it wouldn’t be any good to have a public sector and a private sector co-existing – the whole point of lawyers is that they operate against each other, so if one sector can pay more, and get better lawyers, it will dominate the other, and wealth would still grant a big advantage. So it would have to be complete – evidence that a client has paid their representative would be grounds for disqualifying that representative.