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In Memoriam: Jerome Frank, 2 NAT'L L.F. 1 (1957)


It is quite possible that Judge Frank regarded his analysis of the disturbing role of "Fact Finding" in the judicial process and his assault on the popular myth of certainty in the law as his most important contributions to a realistic study of law in action. Calling himself a fact skeptic rather than a rule skeptic and devoting much of his interest to the vitally important role of trial courts, he never tired of emphasizing the impossibility of attaining a high degree of predictability with regard to judicial behavior due to the elusiveness of fact finding. "No matter how precise or definite . . . the formal legal rules," to quote his language, "no matter what the discoverable uniformities behind these formal rules, nevertheless it is impossible, and will always be impossible, because of the elusiveness of the facts on which decisions turn, to predict future decisions in most (not all) lawsuits, not yet begun or not yet tried."

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