August 2014

Apologies for the tardiness. We’re a little late on this; we promised you a Supreme Court clerk hiring update last week. But we suspect that Above the Law readers, unlike the Clerk of Court at One First Street, are willing to accept a late filing.

In an earlier post, we also asked for information about what Supreme Court clerk bonuses are at these days. We now have news to pass along to you.

Check out the list of SCOTUS clerks hired thus far for October Term 2011, and ogle the signing bonuses for outgoing clerks heading to private law firms, after the jump….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Supreme Court Clerk Hiring Watch: Into OT 2011 We Go
(Plus information about SCOTUS clerk signing bonuses.)”

Anthony Weiner, pre-implosion

* Health care bill for 9/11 first responders fails to pass the House. The bill failed to garner a 2/3rds majority. [Politico]

* …And as the 9/11 bill went down in flames, Congressman Anthony Weiner (D-NY) spontaneously combusted. You must watch the video. [Huffington Post]

* No plea deal for Congressman Charlie Rangel (D-NY) on ethics charges. [Good Morning America]

* Here’s an important ethics tips for lawyers: you can’t give female clients a discount in exchange for freaky favors. [Law.com]

* Hey, you can get into medical school without a pre-med undergraduate degree. Something for aimless college graduates to think about instead of blindly flooding the legal profession. [New York Times]

* Could somebody please explain to me why I’m supposed to care about Chelsea Clinton’s wedding. [CBS]

Gawker posed a very inflammatory question yesterday: How Did the Owner of a Barely-Legal Teen Gossip Blog Get Into a Prestigious Law School?

The law school in question is USC Gould School of Law, currently ranked #18. Gawker commenters wondered whether this was a misuse of the term “prestigious.”

The gossip blog owner in question is Christopher Stone, 31, who runs Sticky Drama and Sticky Noodz, dedicated to teenage gossip and teens’ nude photos, respectively. It’s a successful blog business model, as you can well imagine. The Sticky Drama site is currently down, but you can check out its tumblr. We sacrificed a few IQ points by looking it over: It’s a mish-mash of cute boys, half-naked girls, and screenshots of Facebook conversations about rape. The site most recently gained notoriety for launching 11-year-old Jessi Slaughter into the public eye, resulting in a cyberbullying frenzy.

Gawker describes it like this:

StickyDrama and its sister porn site, Sticky-n00dz, are two of the worst sites on the Internet, built on exploiting teens and tweens’ insecurities and then publicly humiliating them. Stickydrama is a crowd-sourced gossip blog that chronicles the lives of “E-celebs.” Sticky-n00dz is similar, but focused on nude pictures. E-celebs are kind of like regular, “In Real Life” celebrities, except their fame exists solely on social-networking sites like Myspace, Twitter, and the live webcam community Stickam.com, from which StickyDrama gets its name.

When Gawker is saying you’re a cesspool….

After seeing Stone tweet about law school — “lol @ all the Efagz pissed that I got into law school–ALL that I applied to. And my entire application was based on StickyDrama. So, nyah!” — Adrian Chen at Gawker asked his Twitter followers where Stone was going. Chen then wrote:

Attention, USC law! This man spends his free time harassing teenagers and videotaping live rapes… Admissions officers at the University of Southern California’s Gould School of Law just admitted him to their 18th-ranked program earlier this week.

We reached out to USC. They say Gawker got it wrong…

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Christopher Stone Is Not Actually a Trojan Man”

A portrait of Judge Kozinski as a young man.

* Hans Bader of CEI is fine with the bar exam — congrats to everyone who just finished, by the way — but wants to ditch the requirement of graduating from law school. After all, “[e]ven students who seldom studied, and reputedly were on drugs, managed to graduate from my alma mater, Harvard Law School.” [DC SCOTUS Examiner]

* For people who profess to hate law school, they sometimes act like they’re still in it: anti-law-school bloggers get caught up in a catfight. [Confessions of a Laid-Off Lawyer]

* A collection of entertaining legal opinions. Chief Judge Alex Kozinski appears multiple times, of course. [Google Scholar Blog]

* Chipotle is delicious — but does it violate the ADA? [Cato @ Liberty]

* Can Wall Street wipe out street language? [Law and More]

* Attention litigators: McKool Smith is hiring for its New York office. [ATL (sponsored content)]

If you thought this whole Shirley Sherrod thing was just going to blow over, well, you’re not thinking like a lawyer interested in generating fees. Burned by Andrew Breitbart’s editing skills, Sherrod says she intends to sue. The New York Daily News reports:

“I will definitely do it,” Sherrod said at the National Association of Black Journalists convention in San Diego.

Sherrod said Andrew Breitbart knew what he was doing when he posted a doctored video that made it appear she was boasting about mistreating a white farmer.

“I knew it was racism, and no one had to tell me that,” she said. “Right will win the end.”

Oh Jesus Christ, please don’t tell me I’m going to have to defend Andrew Breitbart

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Shirley Sherrod Is Coming After Andrew Breitbart”

Mirrors on the ceiling, The pink champagne on ice
And she said ‘We are all just prisoners here, of our own device’
And in the master’s chambers, They gathered for the feast
They stab it with their steely knives, But they just can’t kill the beast

For many takers of the bar exam, the ordeal is over. Yay! Congratulations. It’s time to get your dragon drink on.

But before you put this experience behind you, we wanted to give you one last picture of bar exam trauma. A tipster reports:

I’m taking the CA bar exam at the Ontario location and staying at the adjacent Airport Marriott. I found the following on my pillow last night.

Yeah, the Marriott’s heart was in the right place, but they really need to think more critically about what kind of gifts they leave on the pillows of people taking the bar…

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “A Lasting Impression from the California Bar”

Well, this is pretty much my worst nightmare. Legal Profession Blog reports on the horrible story of Olufemi Nicol:

The Illinois Administrator has filed a complaint alleging that an attorney failed in bad faith to repay his student loans for a graduate business degree obtained after he graduated from the University of Chicago Law School in 1994. From 2006-2006, the attorney held several positions in business including a stint as president of Gear 7 in Los Angeles. The complaint alleges that the attorney received over $78,000 in loans in 2006 and signed two promissory notes. He allegedly has not made any payments on either note.

Okay, phew. I never took out additional loans for further education while I still owed money on my J.D. And I restarted payments — minimum payments — after I got a new job outside of Biglaw. I’m golden. AVOIDING DEBTOR’S PRISON SECURE!

But this Nicol guy? Yeah, sounds like he’s screwed. Law Shucks picks up the story….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Former DLA Piper Attorney Faces Lawsuit for Failure to Pay His Debts”

Ed. note: Have a question for next week? Send it in to advice@abovethelaw.com.

ATL,

Can you please offer your insight into proper etiquette for ring tones in the workplace?  I understand someone may have an affinity for The Jitterbug in their personal life, but when did it become acceptable to leave your cell phone on full volume while in the office knowing that it will go off at least three times each day? I work next to a law clerk whose phone sounds like it’s Mario eating a magic mushroom whenever he receives a message. I’ve asked him to put his phone on vibrate or silent when he comes to work, but it hasn’t sunk in — do I need to pull a Bluto from Animal House and smash his phone to stop the madness?

Gallagher

Dear Gallagher, this question is disturbing on many levels….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Pls Hndle Thx: No Service in the Club”

Barry Levenson

Are you a foodie? Are you committed enough to the gustatory world to leave the awful taste of the law behind and start a museum about your favorite food? Wisconsin lawyer Barry Levenson was that devoted. Sadly, his favorite food is mustard.

Levenson got a shout-out on NPR this morning for his National Mustard Museum. Levenson is a Wisconsin law grad who had quite a distinguished legal career. According to On Wisconsin, he practiced for 15 years and headed the Criminal Appeals Unit of the Wisconsin DOJ, arguing lots of cases before the state Supreme Court. In 1986, after a disappointing World Series — another sad note: Levenson is a Boston Red Sox fan — he consoled himself by buying lots of his favorite food: mustard. While healthier than ice cream, it turned into an obsession.

He began manically collecting jars of mustard. In 1987, one of his cases made it to One First Street; before oral argument in Griffin v. Wisconsin, he spotted a jar he didn’t have yet on a room service tray at his hotel and stuck it in his suit pocket, where it remained while he addressed the Nine. It was good luck perhaps. He won the Fourth Amendment case, 5-4. Levenson tells us he got some inspiration thinking back on “Justice Felix FRANKFURTER and Chief Justice Warren BURGER.”

Eventually, Levenson decided he wanted to flavor his whole life with mustard. He gave up his law job in 1992 and opened his museum. It gets 30,000 visitors per year. How do you make mustard that sexy?

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Career Alternatives for Lawyers: Open a Museum”

Ah, the end of summer. For many law students, this time of year ushers in the arrival of the fall on-campus recruiting season (or what’s left of it), the dreaded wait for a permanent offer of employment following graduation, as well as a new diet regime for those summer associates who took their firm’s “unlimited lunches” policy a little too literally.

While your summer associate experience is still fresh in your mind, please take our short survey. Responses will be kept entirely confidential, of course.  So give us your raw insights into the stuff that no one told you about summer programs, such as how many hours you really work a day, whether the assignments you receive are “real” or just busy work, and which social events are worth attending.

This is last call on the survey for this summer as it will be closed on Friday, so please share your insights before then. Thanks!

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