It's sad to think that nowadays a writer would have to hire an attorney just to keep them from getting screwed. So many writers just want nothing more than to get representation, it's not fair that they should have to put up with this.
While writing is an art to the author, to the publisher, it's a business designed to make money. Revo is absolutely correct in that ANY business deal involving finance usually utilizes an attorney on both sides, and has for many, many decades--in some cases hundreds of years. In a competitive business like publishing, a new writer is always in the weaker position. And really, can you think of any business where one simply expects the party in a stronger position to just be benevolent and nice? I can't think of any.
It doesn't make it right, but really, it's just how business is. All business, not just publishing.