You already know the legal system is screwed up, but I’d like to be more specific about why. When we say lawyers are “litigious,” what we really mean is that too many lawyers spend too much time thinking about how to sue someone else. Similarly, legislators spend their time manufacturing new laws, which usually create more opportunities for people to sue each other (see the Economist’s discussion of this point). Law professors typically do the same; the typical law review article focuses on a social problem and proposes to solve it with a new legal rights. (Just take a look at the torrent of recent academic articles about privacy and you’ll see what I mean).
I don’t understand why we as a society spend so much time thinking about suing people. I’m much more interested in figuring out how we can stop suing each other. If we could create “lawsuit-free zones,” we’d avoid the individual and social costs of adjudicating disputes, including the’ settlements payments to get rid of nuisance and otherwise meritless lawsuits. Plus, lawsuit-free zones stimulate business investments by providing more legal certainty to entrepreneurs, which should translate into more jobs. So finding ways to dial down litigation might be the best “jobs stimulus” effort our legislators could undertake.