Books

Bob Morse

The main audience of the U.S. News Best Law Schools rankings is not meant to be law schools or law school deans—and the rankings should not be a management tool that law school administrators use as the basis for proving that their school is improving or declining. The rankings are produced primarily for prospective students as one tool to help them determine the relative merits between schools they are considering.

Bob Morse, rankings czar of U.S. News and World Report, commenting on a critique of the rankings found in Professor Brian Tamanaha’s book, Failing Law Schools (affiliate link). Professor Tamanaha argues that the U.S. News rankings fuel unhealthy competition between schools.

What a weird situation…. [But Justice Scalia] is an incredible game player, using intellectual honesty as a trope, and that is the kind of thing that David Wallace would just love.

Elizabeth Wurtzel, the successful writer turned lawyer and legal commentator, on the surprising friendship between her close friend, David Foster Wallace, and Justice Antonin Scalia.

(The background behind Justice Scalia’s interest in Wallace, after the jump.)

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Quote of the Day: What Do Liz Wurtzel and Justice Scalia Share in Common?”

Pay attention to the game when you go to the ballpark.

* If anything, baseball stadiums need less netting to prevent fans from catching foul balls. And if your six-year-old gets clocked in the head by a batted ball, it should be a lesson to wealthy fans in great seats to pay attention to the goddamn national pastime instead talking on your cell phone or watching the scoreboard or doing whatever non-baseball activity that distracted you from the 2-2 count with the lefty up at bat. [Legal Blog Watch]

* Pop quiz, law professors. What do you do? [Volokh Conspiracy]

* Here’s a great review of Mark Hermann’s book: Inside Straight, that focuses on Hermann’s use of the commenters in his material. This will provide excellent research for my own project: How I Became An Affirmative Action Walrus. [Simple Justice]

* Don’t you love how the Michigan Law walk-out on Rob Portman is now actually a bit of a thing in the VEEPstakes? [Gawker]

* It’s been a while since I studied commercial paper, but I’m pretty sure SpongeBob Squarepants coins aren’t going to pass muster. [Dealbreaker]

* Ohio tries to further regulate fracking, but efforts to frustrate fracking f**k-ups feel futile. [Fulbright Fracking Blog]

* Morrison & Foerster elects new firm leadership. [Thomson Reuters News & Insight]


* Kristen Saban has already moved to dismiss the suit filed by her former sorority sister stemming from their alleged sororitastic catfight. [WSFA]

* Massage parlor busted in prostitution sting: a victory for human rights. Said massage parlor/brothel shares a building AND A SIGN with local law firm: hilarious. Of course there are pics. Do you even need to ask? [KREM]

* Speaking of sex for money, Canada no longer offers visas for foreign strippers, escorts, or massage parlor workers. [Newser via Legal Blog Watch]

* “I lost the Casey Anthony case. Vote for me for State Attorney!” Does the state of Florida realize the rest of the United States only keeps it around for comedic relief? [Daily Beast]

* Missy Elliot is suing a car dealership that, she says, has not delivered her Lamborghini as agreed to. Man, that car dealer might be in trouble, because she’s a b*tch. See, Missy got more cheese. Back on up while she rolls up her sleeves. [Jalopnik]

* I really don’t want to make this joke, but I feel like I have no choice: in San Francisco, two drunk guys walking around naked would not only not get arrested, but no one would even bother giving them a second look. [Legal Juice]

* More praise for the new book from our in-house counsel columnist Mark Herrmann. Nice work! [Class Action Blawg; Law and More]

* Seton Hall Law professors are organizing a mini-golf tournament. It’s called networking, folks. [Lincoln ESQ.]

* What if — gasp — we rewrote the U.S. Constitution today? Take a look at this discussion once you’ve picked up your shattered originalist jaw from the floor. [Room for Debate / New York Times]

* Kim Dotcom’s extradition hearing has been postponed until next spring. Maybe this will allow him more time to throw bodacious pool parties. [Threat Level / Wired]

* A photo of $211,223.04 that Matthew Inman of the Oatmeal raised for charity. Hopefully this means that the Oatmeal/Charles Carreon lawsuit circus is finally leaving town. [The Oatmeal]

* “Bada da da daaah… I’m loving it! Now give me my Big Mac or I’ll shoot you in the face.” [Legal Juice]

* A San Francisco restaurant finds an creative way around California’s new foie gras ban. Force-fed duck liver 4Lyfe! [Inside Scoop SF]

* The Supreme Court Term feels like a distant memory, but now’s a good time to look back on it with added perspective. Courtesy of MoloLamken, here’s a great guide to the big business cases of the Supreme Court Term just ended. Download or print it, then read it at your leisure. [MoloLamken (PDF)]

* A nice review of Inside Straight columnist Mark Herrmann’s new book. (The ATL commenters even get a shout out. Boo yah!) [Legal Writing Prof Blog]

Don’t read this post again! It would be unbearable.

I’m unabashedly doing two things with this post:

First, I’m serving my purpose: My new book has been published! Here’s a link to the ABA Web Store’s page for Inside Straight: Advice About Lawyering, In-House And Out, That Only The Internet Can Provide.

Second, I’m serving David Lat’s purpose: Above the Law becomes more valuable when readers click through links and read multiple pages of text. I’ve therefore hidden the information about Cravath’s summer bonuses (if any) behind this link…

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Contrary to popular belief, many lawyers who toil in Biglaw actually enjoy what they do. This is especially true of partners (as opposed to associates who just pass through on their way to in-house or government opportunities). Some partners enjoy their work so much that they’d do it for free — or at least for much less than the millions they typically receive.

Of course, even if you find fulfillment in the work you do as a law firm partner, you can’t deny that the other benefits are nice. Being a Biglaw partner certainly allows you to provide an upscale lifestyle for your family. And it might permit you to enjoy an early retirement for yourself.

When you earn millions of dollars a year in partner profits, with lucrative retirement benefits on top of that (assuming your firm doesn’t do a Dewey), you don’t need to work until you’re 65 or 70. Instead, you can get an early start on your golden years, pursuing all of the hobbies and interests that you never had the chance to explore while billing 2000-plus hours a year.

That’s exactly what a retired Skadden corporate partner, James Freund, has been doing. Freund, who is now 77, retired from SASMF back in 1996, around the age of 61 (a little early, but not hugely so).

A few years ago, Freund scaled back his lifestyle. He traded in his $5 million townhouse for an apartment — one that cost a mere $3 million. Being a retired Skadden M&A partner is a tough life, but somebody’s got to live it….

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If Congress wants lessons on how things work from Jamie Dimon, they should have to pay him a speaker fee or something.

* Another year, another survey that shows prospective law students care more about the U.S. News Law School Rankings than anything else when applying to law school. In fact, it’s the exact same number from 2010. Kids are dumb. [Kaplan]

* Everybody is worried about what will happen when computers replace attorneys. I’m much more interested in what will happen when computers replace hookers. [The Atlantic]

* If watching our Congress ask idiot questions of Jamie Dimon doesn’t make you feel like we need vastly more intelligent Congresspeople, maybe watching them fawn over Jamie Dimon will do the trick. [Dealbreaker]

* I really hadn’t thought of this — in addition to your huge educational debts, your parents are most likely out there spending your inheritance. I swear, if I ever spend money on more education, it’s going to be on a post-apocalyptic survivalist class. [Law and More]

* Former TSA lady gropes current TSA lady after inappropriate groping from TSA. [Threat Level / Wired]

* In real life, unlike Monopoly, a bank error is never really in your favor. [Legal Blog Watch]

* Do the Republicans have an abortion problem? [New Yorker]

* Happy Birthday, Lat! Check out the very cool gift (affiliate link) that he received in the mail today — signed by one of the authors. [Twitpic via Twitter]

In case you’re wondering, there was no major news out of the U.S. Supreme Court this morning. Our friends at SCOTUSblog predict that opinions in the marquee cases, such as the Arizona immigration case and the health care reform case (aka Obamacare), will be issued next week. (Above the Law’s own Supreme Court correspondent, Matt Kaiser, should have a more detailed write-up of this morning’s proceedings later today.)

But we do have some SCOTUS-related news to mention this morning (and not just the latest in law clerk hiring). Did you know that Justice Antonin Scalia has a new book out, hitting stores tomorrow?

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A not-so-little house on the prairie. It looks like a Wright, right?

Are you having a difficult time finding a position in the depressed legal job market? Maybe you need to think about relocating. Have you considered moving to Iowa? As noted by Vivia Chen over at The Careerist, the “Life Changing” state is experiencing a lawyer shortage.

Lawyer jobs and husks of corn aren’t all that Iowa has to offer. The state also has a reasonable cost of living, including some very well-priced real estate.

Take the Iowa home of a former partner Biglaw partner and former general counsel to a major media company. This lovely residence is currently on the market for a surprisingly modest sum….

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