Having Internet connection is really bad when you're quite seriously strapped for time with regard to the fact that the paper you're trying to study for is this Thursday and you still only have completed notes for one topic, namely Mortgages. My parents didn't
[private joke deleted, again] switch off the cable modem because I told them I need it for the attempted studying - which is true. For the first time this semester, I looked up two cases and actually read the parts I wanted to read. Amazing, isn't it? I think so too.
My purpose for adding this entry is to rant about the exception to the registered proprietor's indefeasibility of title, namely the exception of fraud. But before I proceed, here's a caveat emptor of sorts: What I'm going to say is extremely unlegal and it's the kind of argument that will get a lawyer thrown out of court if he ever attempts to use it in real life. Why? Because I refuse to think legally. Then again, I can't think legally. And for the most part, I'm glad I manage to hold on to my humanity, despite all odds.
(Okay, so that's bullshit. I can't think legally because I don't study, but nevermind about that.)
So here's how the story goes: Someone gets cheated out of his land. The person who did the cheating sells the land to someone else. The person who got cheated goes to court to try to get back his land, but because the new owner of the land is the new registered proprietor who has an immediate indefeasibility of title, the person who got cheated gets absolutely jack. He doesn't get his land back, the new registered proprietor goes off happily with his stupid indefeasible title, all because he wasn't party to the fraud. Does the person who did the cheating get his comeuppance? Of course not. We're talking about the law. I guess the lesson to be learnt here is: Don't get cheated out of your land, especially if you're a Maori living in New Zealand in 1905 because the court is made up of white judges.
And then there's this other scenario where we fuss over what constitutes 'fraud' under the Torrens system, nevermind that the most obvious thing that should occur to anyone with some semblance to that thing normal (read: untainted by the law) people call 'conscience', is that when people say they'd do something and put that in writing, they should bloody hell adhere to it. Simple as that. Screw the idea of consideration, constructive knowledge, actual knowledge, whatever fucking bullshit the common law is so fond of spewing like useless garbage. Most of the time, the distinction between 'fraud involving dishonesty of some sort, and behaviour which falls short of that' (TSY, page 232) is arbitrary, nebulous and wholly artificial. The test is whether the purchaser purchased subject to the claimant's rights rather than in defiance of them? Uh...how do you tell the difference? It's all a matter of degree, isn't it? Ultimately, the fact remains: The guy knew of the pre-existing interest encumbering the property, the interest is unregistered, the guy goes ahead to buy the property. How can he then turn around and be all, Screw this person; the property is mine?
Suffice it to say that I don't get it. At all. I think this whole topic is a crock of shit. I haven't revisited UOB v Bebe yet but I vaguely remember being quite pissed off when the lecturer explained the case during one of the very few non-Kevin Gray Property lectures I listened to. I'm also inclined to think that certainty is overrated, that justice takes backseat to consistency, and that...the law really sucks and I hate being in law school. And so we've come full circle once again.
Well, fuck this. I just want to pass my exam with hopefully something that looks like a B so what does it matter, right? We learn to leave our moral compasses at the door when we enter law school, so I guess I'll just have to, I don't know, suck it up and do what I gotta do.
While I'm on the subject of law school and how it's managed to mess with me, I'll just write a few lines about how it's managed to mess with my vocabulary as well. For instance, I can't use the word 'consideration' anymore without thinking about its legal (meaning common law) definition. I can't see the word 'consideration' in a non-law sentence without thinking of a quid pro quo, and I get all confused when that quid pro quo doesn't surface. And you know what? It's bloody annoying. It's indescribably annoying. And the worst part is, I actually use the word 'consideration' in its legal meaning in normal, day-to-day, non-legal sentences, and you have no idea how much I wish my understanding of that word is untainted.
It's also slightly amusing, to me at least, how it is that I can understand absolutely jackshit about Company Law and still manage to use Company-related phrases in contexts completely unrelated to the subject. I can't get the whole 'agreement to create a charge upon the occurrence of a contingency' thing out of my head, nevermind that I have no idea if there's actually a charge created when you have such an agreement, or if you merely have a contract or whatever the heck it is. I think I used the 'occurrence of a contingency' thing in an earlier entry. I find that very amusing.
Something else I find amusing? Bad poetry. It makes me laugh so very hard. And most of the time I'm laughing at myself.
Right. It's 1.23 a.m. I need to finish the LTA stuff before I go to bed, and guess what? I haven't freaking showered. Argh. I'm an incompetent time-manager. Talk about the story of my life. On the bright side, I drank 4 cups of coffee and so I think I can manage to stay up past 4. What the hell. I can't believe I'm actually doing this.
Edited to add at 4.14 a.m.:
Seriously, why do banks find it necessary to bring 90-year-old women stricken with Alzheimer's who don't even have a lot of money to court? As much as it is the banks' right to do so, would it kill them to just let things go? I find it appalling that UOB could do such a thing and still sleep soundly at night. God, I hate banks.
Stupid, stupid Property. Stupid TSY textbook. I didn't manage to finish the LTA part. My hand is breaking and I can't write another word, the personal equity section in the textbook is ten trillion pages long, and I'm not registering anything anymore. I just feel really sad for poor Bebe who lost her property simply because UOB has no conscience and because her stupid daughter has even less conscience than an evil bank. And the CA judgment only reinforced my belief that the common law's fixation with certainty is crap and that, all too often, it spurns justice like a cur out of its way and that's really tragic. At least the CJ recognised what a bad-in-equity (non-law definiton of equity) decision he made. But still, it's sad all the same.
So it's suddenly 4.21 a.m. That should explain why my brains feel like they're not working anymore. I haven't evne turned on the air-conditioning. I was too lazy to blow-dry my hair so I let the fan dry it. Uh, yeah. I'm typing crap.
I'm going to bed.