Ah, the joy of being host of a Blawg Review during the last week of August which is a time of endings (summer) and beginnings (school). So I’ve got a built in theme: Endings, Beginnings and the Transitions and Crossings in Between. I’ll list posts by theme but I’m going to be brief with links because it’s so late and I’ve already experienced one fatal error with this inferior blogware known as Typepad. You’ll note a couple of forced entries that just didn’t want to stay on topic.
Last Words Margaret Marks has found the The Standard Catchall Universal Disclaimer Notice, over 7000 words long.
Last Resort George Lenard blogs about the last resort Ninth Circuit argument of a [casino]resort bartender challenge to a requirement to wear makeup as sex discrimination. George summarizes the argument and predicts the outcome.
Last Breath of Summer Two posts reflecting the dying days of fling-filled, wild, carefree summer months. First up is Lawyer-Writer who in this post ponders why she’s working so hard in August while her friends carouse without her and the wisdom of this article on the life less travelled. Meanwhile, The Wired GC post entitled Sex and the City (London) discusses Fish Sunday Thinking, a book allegedly written by a young lawyer at a large London firm about "the sexual antics and misbehaviour of some of the City’s richest lawyers."
Death of Faith Professor Bainbridge writes that the Vioxx/Merck verdict has shaken his faith in juries. Check out his post and the accompanying discussion. Apparently, however, Merck still has faith in juries, since according to this post by Patrick Lamb, Merck plans to try every case. In this same post, Patrick also expresses a death of faith (whatever he might have had) in corporate decision making, wondering why the Merck CEO and other senior executives gave videotaped testimony and were absent from the trial.
Death of Jury Trials Larry Bodine blogs about the death of federal jury trials, which have declined by 80 percent over the past two decades. He advises "If your firm has an active practice in Federal trials, it’s time to get out. This area is dead or dying."
II. In-Betweens: Transitions, Changes and Crossings
From Obscurity to Fifteen Seconds Stopped Clock blogs about what it’s like to go from obscurity to fifteen seconds of fame after being quoted in a newspaper article about John Roberts’ comments about homemakers becoming lawyers.
Change of Wardrobe? Professor Ethan Leib asks this question: "Anyone think it’s totally inappropriate to wear jeans? (in the classroom?) Already, 23 commenters have chimed in. My own view – yes. Jeans either betray arrogance (I can wear what I want and no one can do anything about it) or lack of respect for one’s position as a professor. Neither is a particularly appealing classroom trait.
Change of Ranking? White Collar Crime Prof Blog links to this Crime Reporter article that ranks prosecutors and wonders how and whether to rank prosecutors. One standard that I’d propose not mentioned in the post: unlike the Crime Reporter article, I wouldn’t give a top ranking to a prosecutor who’s under investigation for public corruption. But that’s just me.
Crossing Borders David Giacalone crosses the border to explore Ernie the Attorney reminisces about a bar exam question in this post which tasked test takers with spotting legal issues. Ernie recalls that he concluded that there were no legal issues, only "issues with people not being able to get along properly." Many lawyers, but apparently not Ernie, fail to lose that perspective the longer they practice, failing to remember that some problems are legal while some are not. And speaking of change, Ernie is stealing himself for the massive change that Hurricane Katrina promises to bring to his city of New Orleans. Stay safe, Ernie.
It makes me think of the changes to the practice of IP law in the
past 7 years (since my oldest child was born). Easy access to PDF
copies of patents (remember ordering a paper patent or having a service
fax you a copy?), online filing, online searching and the rethink(ip)’r
favorite….working with patent attorneys who are not in major metro
areas. All of this is possible because not only is more and more
content available online, but people are becoming more and more used to
relying on technology (the Internet in this case) for their business
needs.Most of these changes weren’t driven by attorneys wanting to earn
more money. It’s hard to argue that simplifying things, ease of use and
speed are synonymous with billing by the hour. They aren’t. Instead,
these changes were driven by the public, by entrepreneurs and by access
III. New Introductions, Meetings and Beginnings
There are a bunch of intros, meetings and fresh starts this week, listed briefly below:
According to this post from Appellate Law and Practice, There’s a new beginning of a sort for a lawyer who was fired for reporting a grievance against an attorney in his firm, who was vindicated by a Connecticut court ruling.
Craig Williams introduces a contest entitled "There oughta be a law." He proposes one that requires each portable piece of electronic equipment to use the same charger. How about a law requiring blog software to automatically save changes every few seconds and create a history page instead of just disappearing from the screen? (obviously, my proposal)
Meet Home School Blogger Scott Sommerville, a lawyer for the Home School Legal Defense Association, Harvard law grad and dad of six.
Robert Coffield of Health Care Law Blog sent an introduction to Diva of the Disgruntled, a former Kaiser employee who blogged about work related issues and was fired. (for more on this subject, visit Coffield’s past posts).
Article III Groupie has been writing Underneath Their Robes for some time, but Will Baude introduces us to her in more depth with his Twenty Questions interview. And on the topic of new looks, A3G’s post Judging John Roberts: The Straight Empire Strikes Back has a fresh picture of Judge Roberts and an analysis of whether he might be gay, which goes to show that sources and links, like statistics, can be used to prove anything (which I believe is precisely the point of A3G’s satire).
Blawg Review has information about next week’s host and instructions how to get your blawg posts reviewed in upcoming issues.