* Justice Sonia Sotomayor just ruined Hobby Lobby’s new year by refusing to block the Affordable Care Act’s contraceptives mandate. All of the members of the company’s legal team will have to scrapbook and crochet for hours to get over this loss. [Reuters]
* Harvard Law graduate Barack Obama is being feted as CNN’s “Most Intriguing Person of 2012,” but he’s currently trailing in fourth place in the most important year-end poll of all: Above the Law’s Lawyer of the Year competition. Get out there and vote! [CNN]
* Federal district court judges aren’t being confirmed as quickly as they once were, and it’s partly because our president isn’t submitting nominees as quickly as those who came before him. [WSJ Law Blog (sub. req.)]
* But even if the president nominated judges more quickly, he’d continue to face harsh opposition from the NRA, which matters because the gun group has an entire party in its pocket. [Opinionator / New York Times]
* A legal problem and a journalism problem wrapped up in a little pretty bow: David Gregory of NBC’s “Meet the Press” is being investigated for displaying an alleged 30-round magazine on the air. [Washington Post]
* One of New York’s most prestigious private schools agreed to settle the sex abuse suit brought against it by former students. Simpson Thacher partner Phil Culhane must be doing a victory dance. [New York Daily News]
* You got a fast car, and now this case will pay all our bills. Toyota settled a class action suit over unintended acceleration, and it’s touted as one of the largest product-liability settlements in history. [New York Times]
* Ay dios mio! You know that you’re never going to enjoy another vacation when you catch a hotel employee spreading his seed all over your clothes. But what did you expect? It’s Mexico. [Courthouse News Service]
* Just how quickly will state-by-state legal education be able to respond to changing market conditions? Thus far, both New York and California have proven themselves to be pretty damn nimble. [Legal Ethics Forum]
* Here’s a cute docket sheet entry from Judge Marcia Cooke in the Southern District of Florida. Thanks for not being a grinch this holiday season, Your Honor! [Southern District of Florida Blog]
* A town in Germany has started using “female friendly” parking spaces, because parking a car is just so hard for we womenfolk to do when we’re supposed to be barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen. [Telegraph]
* Hiram Chodosh, once named as a law dean hottie, has been named the fifth president of Claremont McKenna College. Of course, the former title is cooler than the latter, don’t you think? [Sacramento Bee]
There’s no gay bar at the Supreme Court right now.
* I’m not sure that it’s legal to tag the cars of people who park poorly, but it’s certainly satisfying. Honestly, every time I see one of those commercials where the dude needs freaking birds to park his “I’ve given up on life” minivan-SUV, I want to scream, “You could act like a man!” [Legal Blog Watch]
* SCOTUS is acting like an old college roommate who just came out is inviting them to a gay bar, and they’re trying to politely decline without looking like raging homophobes. [SCOTUSblog]
* To all the people who didn’t pass the California bar exam, here’s a guy who did it while only studying for 100 hours. Yeah. So… umm, I didn’t really think this blurb through. [Blake Masters]
* Do lawyers need to “love” their clients? Come on, isn’t loving the money they give you enough? [Underdog]
* Jason Whitlock took the Jovan Belcher and put the focus exactly where it should be, on our gun laws. Then Bob Costas blew a big megaphone on Sunday Night Football. [Fox Sports]
* It’s funny, I’m against sex offender registries because even though sex crimes are heinous, registries are bad things that create second-class citizens and tend to unfairly lump people who didn’t commit the worst stuff in with disgusting humans. That means I should probably be against animal abuse registries too, but man I don’t think animal abusers suffer nearly enough. So, whatever, I’m a hypocrite. I’m a hypocrite who cares more about dogs than children. [Simple Justice]
* Don’t forget to add your résumé to the flood for our open positions on Above the Law. At this point, you might want to send a picture to get our attention. Not of yourself, but you know, Twinkies, peep-toed shoes, something that we actually care about. [Above the Law]
We’ve covered odd judicial penalties now and again, and there’s a legitimate debate as to the appropriateness of public humiliation as a legal remedy for wrongdoing.
Or, as we see next week in Cleveland, a woman forced to wear an “idiot” sign on the corner where she was caught busting some Crazy Taxi moves — in order to get around a school bus filled with children.
And of course, we have video of this gonzo driver, so you can see for yourself if her punishment was warranted….
Supreme Court justices are inevitably controversial figures. As we all know, they rule on the most important issues of the day, which gives them power to affect all Americans’ lives in significant ways. It’s hard to think of those who sit on the highest court in the land as anything resembling you and me.
But there’s at least one great equalizer. A game of hoops? No. SCOTUS has that covered too. We’re talking about parking tickets…
* This George Mason law prof really doesn’t want gays to be able to get married. As the ATL CommentBot will undoubtedly note, I disagree with him. But you gotta give Professor Nelson Lund credit for writing a hell of an opening line though. [SCOTUSblog]
* Yes, but would it be libel if the Men in Black had erased everyone’s memory of the arrest except for the one guy who escaped and is telling the truth but no one else knows or believes it? [Overlawyered]
* Cass Sunstein provides a calm, well-reasoned discussion about how much personal opinions about sources matter in shifting people’s beliefs. Whatever, I hate that pinko commie. [New York Times]
* So you know that whole “NYC hires big scary Proskauer to evict old, folk-hero newspaper vendor”? Yeah, well, maybe let’s replace “folk-hero” with alleged “back-door dealer” and “scary Proskauer lawyer” with “former NYC attorney trying to help her city out pro bono.” [New York Magazine]
* This Ohio inmate says he’s too fat to be executed. That’s nuts: his extreme obesity might actually save his life. Eat your heart out, American Heart Association.[Columbus Dispatch]
* Oh snap! The Winklevii are back, and they’re investing in a new social network… for investors. Hmmm… was kind of hoping after such an extended absence they’d have come up with something with a little more pizazz. On the upside, they still look creepily identical! [SF Weekly]
* Big government is completely out of control! First they try to kill grandma, and now they won’t even let two-year-olds drive cars! I can’t take this socialist nonsense anymore; I’m moving to Canada. [Legal Juice]
Not just because a DUI attorney was arrested for a DUI — potentially his third DUI. That story would be cool, but a little trite.
No, what makes this story particularly fun is that the attorney was apprehended by a passing motorist as he allegedly tried to flee the scene of an accident. The Good Samaritan motorist got out of his car and chased down our attorney on foot, all while wearing flip-flops.
Oh, and I should mention that this particular DUI attorney has a YouTube ad where he doesn’t “speak,” but has some scary music, pictures, and a screen shot of his bio.
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The holiday season is upon us, and yet again, you have no idea what to get for the fickle lawyer in your life. We’re here to help. Even if your bonus check hasn’t arrived yet, any one of the gifts we’ve highlighted here could be a worthy substitute until your employer decides to make it rain.
We’ve got an eclectic selection for you to choose from, so settle in by that stack of documents yet to be reviewed and dig in…
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