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Lawyer Blog (?)

Phila Lawyer reads like fiction (awesome, Hunter S. Thompson -esque fiction -- Part 1, 2 ) to outsiders, but that might just be because it's so fucking good. The lawyers commiserating in the comments, at least, think it's real.
The navigation is cumbersome -- if you're not careful, you'll come into a story in the middle. For your perusal, then, I've laid a few out:
Part 1, 2, 3, 4, 5
Part 1, 2
Part 1, 2, 3, 4

posted by Tlogmer on Mar 30, 2005 - 7 comments

Politics

Anything goes. A Libyan court began hearing an appeal by five Bulgarian nurses and a Palestinian doctor who face the death penalty for allegedly infecting 380 children with the AIDS virus, in spite of testimony from Luc Montaignier, the French doctor who first isolated the HIV virus, and Swiss and Italian colleagues, that the epidemic was due to a lack of hygiene. Tripoli has said that in exchange for the freedom of the nurses, it wants compensation equal to that paid by Libya to relatives of the victims of the Lockerbie plane bombing carried out by its secret service in 1988. (Yahoo/AFP news)
posted by semmi on Mar 30, 2005 - 18 comments

Never say say never ! oops.

Sanchez Perjury Proof ? That depends on the meaning of "never" Mainstream media once again caught with pants down as blogger citizen-journalist notes apparent perjury by Gen. Sanchez during testimony before the US Congress concerning whether he authorized torture or not. The Globe and Mail noticed the ACLU release of a FOIA-obtained memo showing that Sanchez did in fact authorize torture, but the implication of perjury seems to have escaped MSM notice, to be pointed out by a blogger Metafilter's own citizen journalist Mark Kraft, who declares : "Sanchez is clearly guilty of perjury, and should face the wrath of Congress... and the Senate should determine the guilt of his boss, Donald Rumsfeld, while they're at it."

The case all hinges on the meaning of the word "never" which - rumor holds - is much more flexible in Sanchez' native "Never-never Land" where - as with the rumored numerous Eskimo terms for different kinds of snow - denizens of that realm have many different meanings for "never", some of which in fact mean "sometimes" or "occasionally" !
posted by troutfishing on Mar 30, 2005 - 62 comments

Constitution Restoration Act of 2005

"...God as the sovereign source of law, liberty, or government." The re-introduction of this bill on March 3rd seemed to have been hardly noticed. It was first brought up last year by Senator Richard Shelby, Rep. Robert Aderholt, and Roy "Ten Commandments" Moore. I wonder if section 201 of the CRA will affect Article VI, Sect. 2. (born of, the 2004 thread (s))
posted by john on Mar 29, 2005 - 47 comments

"The Last Days of Judas Iscariot"

What About Judas? Dante condems Judas to eternal damnation in the darkest, deepest circle of hell. But what if someone came to the great traitor's defense in a trial to win his entrance into heaven? The playwright Stephen Adly Guirgis imagines just such a scenario in "The Last Days of Judas Iscariot," directed by Philip Seymour Hoffman and running at the Public Theater in New York City. More inside.
posted by matteo on Mar 24, 2005 - 21 comments

Open Source Yoga

Copyright a yoga move? If yoga has been around for 5,000 years, can a 21st century businessman claim to own a piece of it? Bikram Choudhury says yes. The Beverly Hills yoga mogul, who popularized his style of yoga and then franchised a chain of studios bearing his name, has long rankled traditionalists, who dislike his tough business tactics and brash outspokenness. Now Choudhury is facing a challenge in a San Francisco courtroom, where a federal judge is hearing arguments in a lawsuit that some legal experts say could define a new frontier in intellectual property. At issue: Can Choudhury take a sequence of two breathing exercises and 26 yoga poses from an ancient Indian practice, copyright it and control how it is practiced? The Open Source Yoga Unity people say he can't. More inside.
posted by matteo on Mar 21, 2005 - 89 comments

Schiavo--life and death?

An Objective Legal Look (and more) on Schiavo-- As a Florida law blogger, I have created this page to help people understand the legal circumstances surrounding the Terri Schiavo saga. In my view, there continues to be a need for an objective look at the matter. There is an unbelievable amount of misinformation being circulated. Links to all court decisions, timelines, questions and answers (some shocking)...you name it. All the info available on this tragic situation.
posted by amberglow on Mar 19, 2005 - 165 comments

I've got it -- it was Sir Peter Maxwell Davies in Orkney with a power line!

"I had to give a statement. I offered them coffee and asked them if they would like to try some swan terrine but I think they were rather horrified. That was a mistake, wasn't it?" The Queen's composer wonders whether he should rethink his thrifty attitude towards accidentally acquired food.
posted by maudlin on Mar 18, 2005 - 28 comments

Another Fan Of Torture Reveals Himself

Another Fan Of Torture Reveals Himself Eugene Volokh, a former clerk to Justice O'Connor and a leading voice in conservative legal circles has some interesting opinions on punishment:

[T]hough for many instances I would prefer less painful forms of execution, I am especially pleased that the killing — and, yes, I am happy to call it a killing, a perfectly proper term for a perfectly proper act — was a slow throttling, and was preceded by a flogging. The one thing that troubles me (besides the fact that the murderer could only be killed once) is that the accomplice was sentenced to only 15 years in prison, but perhaps there's a good explanation.
posted by expriest on Mar 17, 2005 - 84 comments

Not guilty.

Not guilty. It's been nearly 20 years since Air India Flight 182 crashed into the ocean off the coast of Ireland, killing all 329 people aboard, after a bomb went off in the luggage compartment. Today, the two main suspects in the case were acquitted. Families of the victims are upset, disgusted. Of the 329 victims, 82 of them were under the age of 12. Let's take a moment to remember them; victims of one of the worst terrorist acts prior to September 11th, 2001.
posted by juliebug on Mar 16, 2005 - 53 comments

ASBO - WTF

ASBOs (or Anti Social Behaviour Orders) are used to stop a variety of different anti-social behaviours.
(Wikipedia Link only included to give background. The fun stuff is in the following BBC links)
posted by seanyboy on Mar 15, 2005 - 25 comments

What will Friends of Hillary do?

The Coming Crackdown on Political Blogging. "In just a few months... bloggers and news organizations could risk the wrath of the federal government if they improperly link to a campaign's Web site. Even forwarding a political candidate's press release to a mailing list...could be punished by fines." CNet's engrossing interview with an FEC commissioner who predicts major turmoil ahead as the government tries to decide if a blog link is a donation. A Brookings paper (pdf) suggest "Radical changes in modes of communication and forms of political campaigning lie not too distant on the horizon." This guy says it's all an attempt to undermine campaign finance laws by freaking out bloggers.
posted by CunningLinguist on Mar 3, 2005 - 20 comments

Padilla

So, what now? Do they charge him? He's an American citizen who's spent 2½ years in custody - charged with no crime - without his lawer, access to due process, habeas corpus, etc. He has no constitutional safeguards and can be held like that because the president says he can be held like that. Who says the president has that power? The president does. Could he have even made a "dirty bomb?"
posted by Smedleyman on Mar 2, 2005 - 29 comments

sex and the law

Another reason to practice safe sex? Man meets woman. Man has oral sex with woman. Woman keeps the sperm, uses it to impregnate herself, then sues for child support. Man counter-sues for emotional distress and "sperm theft". Although the emotional distress claim is still active, the "sperm theft" claim was dismissed. On that point, the court decided: When plaintiff "delivered" his sperm, it was a gift -- an absolute and irrevocable transfer of title to property from a donor to a donee... There was no agreement that the original deposit would be returned upon request.
posted by halekon on Feb 26, 2005 - 87 comments

Sarah Robert's long walk

Sarah Roberts vs. Boston In 1848, five-year-old Sarah Roberts was barred from the local primary school because she was black. Her father sued the City (.pdf file). The lawsuit was part of an organized effort by the African-American community to end racially segregated schools. The book "Sarah's Long Walk: The Free Blacks of Boston and How Their Struggle for Equality Changed America" tells the story of the case of Roberts v. City of Boston, that remains a little-known landmark in the civil rights movement.
posted by matteo on Feb 24, 2005 - 4 comments

Grin and bear it.

Seizure of land for the public good or unconstitutional cash grab? Originally, the power of eminent domain was used by government to condemn property for the public good, usually to build railroads or highways or bridges. This power has been expanded to redevelop dilapidated neighbourhoods, and ultimately, "economic development" (public good by way of jobs and taxes). What will you do when Pfizer wants to build a research facility *on* your backyard and your government helps them do it? Hint: it's nothing new, just wait for 2008 or 2012 (maybe).
posted by loquax on Feb 23, 2005 - 40 comments

Bad cop, bad cop, whatcha gonna do, whatcha gonna do when they broadcast you?

Bad Cop, No Donut! is a weekly wrap-up of North American police brutality, misconduct and corruption. (mp3 archive.) Unsurprisingly, not everyone is a fan.
posted by stonerose on Feb 23, 2005 - 16 comments

But ossifer, I was only...

"It is stand-up improv at its most creative, with an occasional James Bond-like tale or even a violent plot, all in search of that one shimmering, often elusive dream, the dismissed ticket." (Yes, I know, it's NYT... tell it to the judge, man.) Maybe some of these folks should've read the previous traffic court thread on MeFi, or... (More Inside)
posted by soyjoy on Feb 22, 2005 - 11 comments

But Hummers are made to float!

Stupid motorists, beware. Arizona goes it one step further. This should be a federal mandate, imho. (Breaking FPP cherry).
posted by Baby_Balrog on Feb 19, 2005 - 34 comments

Squirt-gun offense

Its real simple - break the rules with no consequences. Usually the crimes you commit are small - but the trick is that they can add up. I hate it when I am the victim of these little trangressions a lot. There must be a way to punish these mini-evil-doers. After playing with this idea for a long time I've come up with a name for it -- the "Squirt-gun offense".
posted by Mwongozi on Feb 17, 2005 - 27 comments

Law and Order is the greatest show ever

When is Law and Order on? The listings are dynamically generated with links to show summaries as well. I can't think of a better homepage now, can you?
posted by clockworkjoe on Feb 16, 2005 - 37 comments

A place for everything...and the ability to track it.

GPS to the rescue! With all the hoopla over California's proposal to tax consumers by adding GPS trackers to cars, has anyone thought about more useful things like tracking criminals on probation?
What do you think? Is this useful, or just a slippery-slope? (via /.)
posted by mystyk on Feb 16, 2005 - 6 comments

McOverturned on McAppeal

You may have heard of the "McLibel Two", the pair of Brits who, as part of a group called London Greenpeace (not affiliated with Greenpeace International, by the by), published a flier decrying the nutritional and corporate values of McDonalds, and who subsequently lost a libel action brought against them by the corporation. It took a few years, but The European Court of Human Rights has overturned the decision, based on the fact that the two did not receive legal aid assistance during the trial (where they represented themselves).
posted by PinkStainlessTail on Feb 15, 2005 - 23 comments

You can run, but you can't hide

LokiTorrent was a popular spot to get movies and they even put up a fight against the recent crackdown, raising thousands in a legal defense fund. Today, it seems the MPAA won, forcing the owner to shut down. That's understandable and I'm not surprised, but they've gone a bit further than I expected, turning the site into a big scary ad against filesharing and warning that you're next. Even worse, the old owner is turning the logs over to the MPAA, for them to go after folks.
posted by mathowie on Feb 10, 2005 - 110 comments

Yer drawls are showin!

"This is the police, pull 'em up!" Perhaps feeling pressure from Louisiana to keep pace in the stupid laws arms race, the Virginia House of Delegates voted 60-34 on Tuesday to impose a $50 fine on anyone found wearing pants low enough that a substantial portion of undergarments is showing. The bill (still pending in the Virginia Senate), introduced by Virginia Beach fashion maven Algie Howell, has attracted international attention and charges of racism.
posted by casu marzu on Feb 10, 2005 - 42 comments

move over, Mass!

Wedding Bells in NYC?? -- with a beautifully-written ruling, NY Supreme Ct. Justice Doris Ling-Cohan states that denying marriage to gay and lesbian New Yorkers is unconstitutional: ... There has been a steady evolution of the institution of marriage throughout history which belies the concept of a static traditional definition. Marriage, as it is understood today, is both a partnership of two loving equals who choose to commit themselves to each other and a State institution designed to promote stability for the couple and their children. The relationships of plaintiffs fit within this definition of marriage. Similar to opposite-sex couples, same-sex couples are entitled to the same fundamental right to follow their hearts and publicly commit to a lifetime partnership with the person of their choosing. The recognition that this fundamental right applies equally to same-sex couples cannot legitimately be said to harm anyone. ...
More here
posted by amberglow on Feb 4, 2005 - 108 comments

Judge backs Guantanamo challenge

Judge backs Guantanamo challenge A US judge has ruled that special military tribunals being used to try hundreds of detainees at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba are illegal.
posted by borq on Jan 31, 2005 - 32 comments

Congress shall...um...make...

More than a third of students surveyed think the First Amendment to the Constitution goes "too far in the rights it guarantees." Reported here.
posted by odinsdream on Jan 31, 2005 - 67 comments

Bastard Nation

"Why is my birth certificate a state secret?" asks Bastard Nation. The group's fight for unconditional access to non-falsified birth records - start with The Basic Bastard, including a history of sealed adoption records in the USA - has enemies, which of course include Fox's "Who's Your Daddy?"
posted by mediareport on Jan 31, 2005 - 62 comments

spinning wheels

An Iowa law outlawing spinning rims? I admit that spinning rims are goofy and have no redeeming social value but outlawing them? When Spinning Rims Are Outlawed, Only Outlaws Will Have Spinning Rims
posted by halekon on Jan 27, 2005 - 61 comments

The Fourth Amendment grows narrower

The Supreme Court, in a 6-2 decision Monday, ruled that police do not violate the Fourth Amendment when they use a drug-detecting dog to locate illegal drugs in the trunk of a car during a legal traffic stop. The decision, and dissents from Ginsburg and Souter.
posted by trharlan on Jan 24, 2005 - 45 comments

On the internet, no one knows you're not a lawyer

R.I.P. LawGuy1975 (Realvideo interview)
posted by euphorb on Jan 13, 2005 - 12 comments

Then again, he was great in Hawaii 5-0

"I don't see how you can be president at least from my perspective, how you can be president, without a relationship with the Lord," said George W. Bush yesterday. (Really? I do.) While giant crosses are banned from next Thursday's inauguration, Jesus likely won't be, despite Michael Newdow's protestations. By the way, the benediction is scheduled to be delivered by The Rev. Kirbyjon Caldwell, who also got the honor in 2001. Back then, he said to millions of bowed heads gathered to mark the beginning of the Bush presidency: "We respectfully submit this humble prayer in the name that's above all other names, Jesus, the Christ. Let all who agree say, 'Amen.'" After gay rights, is discrimination against atheists the next great civil rights battle of our time? Or should we just shut up and move to France?
posted by Saucy Intruder on Jan 12, 2005 - 90 comments

The torture memoranda

Links to the government memoranda on torture and the Geneva Convention can be found here (sign-up required) or else through the "featured link" on www.c-span.org. While Alberto Gonzales will probably be confirmed as Attorney General, the memoranda were the subject of some stinging testimony by such heavy-hitters as Harold Koh, dean of Yale Law School, at the end of today's confirmation hearing.
posted by klazmataz on Jan 6, 2005 - 20 comments

Painted ladies

Can your employer require you to wear makeup and follow the dictates of an image consultant? Yes, according to a panel from the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals. In Have They Ever Shared a Bathroom with a Woman? Workplace Fairness discusses the recent ruling and the historical background of bartender Darlene Jesperson's challenge to Harrah's "personal best" policy on the basis that it is discriminatory to female employees.
posted by madamjujujive on Jan 5, 2005 - 48 comments

Comments open; continually revised

The Ethics of Deep Self-Modification. What will happen when machines gain the ability to modify their own psychology? Do we have a responsibility to step in? What happens when we have the ability to modify ourselves? Philosopher Peter Suber has dedicated himself to issues of self-modification... not just in psychology, but also in constitutional law. Small wonder that this is the guy who invented Nomic. His site is littered with great stuff; he now is primarily involved with the open access movement. Check out his open access primer and blog.
posted by painquale on Jan 3, 2005 - 14 comments

Told you so

I hate people who say I told you so... But.... Edgar Morales shot a little girl, does that make him a terrorist? Other gang members were prosecuted before this for terrorism, other groups who maybe should have haven't - so what's the new law for? Is this the first of many prosecutions under new laws which some said would do one thing but are actually doing something else?
posted by Smedleyman on Dec 28, 2004 - 60 comments

15 -- oops -- 10 Commandments

Alabama judge wears robe with Ten Commandments embroidered on it in a nice cursive mustard yellow, bringing the state even closer to the nipples of religion. Lawyer objects. Hear the judge's defense at npr.
posted by swift on Dec 27, 2004 - 53 comments

Yes Virginia, There are Christian ACLU Lawyers

A call for Christian lawyers who have worked for the ACLU. The ACLU tries to be balanced , but considering the amount of effort they have put forth to inhibit Christian influence from/to the government, should a Christian lawyer work for them?
posted by urlnotfound on Dec 27, 2004 - 65 comments

Thanks for the new living room, neighbor!

Thanks for the new living room, neighbor! In case you needed any further news about the earth moving, residents in Berkeley, CA have found themselves embroiled in a property-line quagmire as the result of the shifting earth. Small quakes and unstable ground have caused real property to slide as much as 20 feet in the last century, though property lines remain firmly fixed, in some cases causing bitter disputes between neighbors who find themselves with new and sometimes unwanted "improvements" relocated across into their survey area. Even in California where the earth moves all the time, the law still hasn't quite caught up to these trickle events.
posted by Ogre Lawless on Dec 27, 2004 - 17 comments

If you're hit by lightning, don't take it lying down!

Opportunists and Self-Described Victims vs. Any Available Deep Pockets For the stupid and the dead, there's the Darwin Awards. For the opportunistic and the alive, there's the Stella Awards. The Stella Awards were inspired by Stella Liebeck. In 1992, Stella, then 79, spilled a cup of McDonald's coffee onto her lap, burning herself. A New Mexico jury awarded her $2.9 million in damages. And of course it wasn't that simple, but the brief descriptions of the various cases make for entertaining reading. Serious legal geeks can have full case reports mailed to them, or check out and post to the site forum.
posted by orange swan on Dec 22, 2004 - 47 comments

Sharia? Shuria thing

Sharia recommended to Ontario government. A review of Mumtaz Ali's recommendation to permit legal arbitration by Islamic law has concluded in his cause's favour, recommending that sharia be allowed for family disputes and inheritance cases. Sharia may be joining Roman Catholic and Orthodox Jewish laws as religious law arbitration options, which is good. But women's groups are worried about the inherent discriminatory nature of sharia, which is bad.
posted by DrJohnEvans on Dec 20, 2004 - 36 comments

Revenge of the 1Ls

The Curse of the Family Palsgraf. "In the eight decades since the New York Court of Appeals in Palsgraf v. Long Island Railroad outlined the two competing theories of proximate cause, a branch of the Palsgraf family has been beset by bad luck, serious injuries and losing lawsuits, just like their matriarch, Helen Palsgraf."
posted by adrober on Dec 10, 2004 - 16 comments

Photo-Blocker

Photo-Blocker - For those who are tired of obeying basic traffic laws. (via)
posted by buriednexttoyou on Dec 6, 2004 - 29 comments

Becker-Posner Blog

Take a Nobel economist who has devoted his career to studying the effect of social and political change on microeconomic theory. Combine with the most prolific legal scholar of the past half-century and federal judge with immeasurable influence on American jurisprudence. Add Moveable Type and a bit of technical help from our fearless leader, and you've got the Becker-Posner Blog, which debuts today.
posted by PrinceValium on Dec 5, 2004 - 14 comments

Free Annual Credit Reports

Free Annual Credit Reports
The Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act of 2003 goes in to effect today. One of the major provisions of the bill, is that consumers now have the right to one free report from each of the three major credit bureaus every 12 months. [more inside]
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood on Dec 1, 2004 - 37 comments

Canadian Lawyers Charge Bush with Torture

LAWs instructions for starting criminal procedures against Bush Today in Vancouver, Lawyers Against the War filed torture charges against George W. Bush under the Canadian Criminal Code. The charges were laid by Gail Davidson, co-chair of Lawyers against the War--LAW, under provisions enacted pursuant to the U.N. Torture Convention, ratified by both Canada and the United States. The charges concern the well known abuses of prisoners held by US Armed Forces in the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq and the Guantanamo Bay prison in Cuba. The charges were accepted by the Justice of the Peace and referred for a hearing to decide whether Bush should be required to appear for trial. The Attorney General of Canada's consent is required within eight days for proceedings to continue, and the question of Bush's diplomatic immunity will have to be resolved by the court.
posted by sunexplodes on Dec 1, 2004 - 66 comments

An online history of jurisprudence, and lack thereof

Sacco and Vanzetti et al. The amazing Famous Trials website, compiled as a labor of love by University of Missouri law professor Douglas Linder, is a motherlode of information on historically significant trails, ranging from Galileo to the Amistad to Lenny Bruce. It features not only official transcripts, but also equally intriguing details such as a map of the railroad cars in the Scottsboro Boys trial, Klan documents from the Mississippi Burning case, and opinion polls related to the My Lai courts martial.
posted by foxy_hedgehog on Nov 30, 2004 - 8 comments

MR GRINCH

You're a naughty one, Mr. Grinch.
posted by mr_crash_davis on Nov 26, 2004 - 53 comments

Why worry? It's GOOD for you!

GOP looking to repeal food labeling law. Would this have anything to do with our recent impasse with Mexico (and with the EU) over GM foods? Or of recent reports of a possible mad cow case in the US?
posted by FormlessOne on Nov 19, 2004 - 27 comments

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