* Maybe you read this over Sunday brunch. I was going to make a crack about barely educated sorority girls in schools I’ve never heard of in states I’ve barely heard of, but then I thought of this, or this, or this. You know who should shed some light on this? Tyra. [New York Times]
* As culturally valuable as Britney’s hair? [Yahoo News]
* Man was “more than” friends with Man’s Best Friend. (You also don’t need to explicitly define “cheating” to know he was also cheating on his girlfriend… although that’s the least of her concerns.) [Bay City Times]
* Because we’re not all Wiki fans. [Conservapedia via]

Britney Spears Above the Law.JPGHere’s an update on the Britney Spears-Kevin Federline legal drama. The emergency court hearing that was supposed to take today, requested by K-Fed to discuss custody of their two children, was canceled.
The reason, according to various media and tabloid reports, is that Spears is back in rehab. She has reportedly checked back into Promises rehabilitation center (which she had fled earlier in the day).
Earlier this week, Spears was photographed sporting a shaved head. Here’s some food for thought from a tipster:

So Britney Spears shaved her head. People think it’s because she’s crazy. But some have speculated it is because her ex-husband threatened to subpoena hair samples from her. And hair samples can show drug use going back years. Like backdated blood samples.

Is this comparable to obstruction of justice? Is it like shredding documents when you’re afraid you might be under investigation, or those documents might be subpoened? Is it a form of spoliation of evidence?

Britney in rehab for 3rd time in a week [Reuters]
Britney Back in Rehab []
Federline Court Appearance Canceled [Associated Press]

Andre Chreky hair hairstylist hairstyle hairdresser Above the Law.jpgThe other day we were thinking about getting a massage. We consulted our trusty Washingtonian magazine, which has a “Spas We Love” article in its February 2007.
One appealing option was Andre Chreky. Washingtonian picked it as a top choice for the “busy executive” (that’s us). And it’s only a few blocks away from our apartment.
But now we’re wondering whether to take our business elsewhere. From the AP:

Andre Chreky, a prominent Washington hairdresser who used to cut first lady Laura Bush’s locks, is the target of his second sexual harassment lawsuit in a little more than four months.

An ex-employee said Chreky routinely demanded sexual favors, grabbed and touched her and made humiliating comments about her appearance and her husband’s sexual prowess. When she rebuffed him, Chreky retaliated by taking away clients, refusing to accommodate her during her pregnancy and ultimately firing her, the plaintiff, Ronnie Barrett, said in the complaint filed in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

Huge, huge news. There’s a straight male hairdresser? In DC?
Chreky allegedly has a pattern and practice of engaging in such harassment of his employees:

Lawyers for Chreky and his salon denied Barrett’s allegations. Chreky is fighting similar charges by another former employee, Jennifer Thong, who sued in September.

Civil actions are also expected from Pamela Pasties and Gina G’String, former employees who left the salon late last year.
P.S. As reported by the Washington Post, Chreky was previously ordered by the state of Virginia to pay child support to yet another former employee, after a paternity test found a 99.99 percent probability that he was the father of her son. But he took the matter to court, where he challenged the accuracy of the test and ultimately prevailed.
Hairdresser to the Elite Faces New Lawsuit [Associated Press]

Stephen Breyer and Charles Fried.JPGAs we mentioned earlier, on Friday we headed downtown to Georgetown Law School for “On Liberty: A conversation between Justice Stephen Breyer and Professor Charles Fried,” of Harvard Law School. We were invited to this event by Georgetown Law Professor Neal Katyal (whom we thank for his hospitality).
Yesterday we shared with you our photos from the event. Now, the first half of our write-up — after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “The Breyer-Fried Discussion: Some Highlights (Part 1)”

The AEI panel discussion on Watters v. Wachovia Bank that we were liveblogging earlier has ended. Our quick thoughts on the question-and-answer session, after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “The AEI Panel: A Final Dispatch”

Ted Frank AEI Above the Law.gifThe televised event that we put in a plug for earlier today is now underway, on C-Span. And it’s actually not just a conversation with Ted Frank (at right), much as we’d enjoy that. It’s a full-blown panel discussion, sponsored by AEI, on Watters v. Wachovia Bank, to be argued before the Supreme Court tomorrow.
The topic — preemption of state banking regulation by federal banking law — is technical, complicated, and perhaps dry-seeming to some. But we’re tuned in, and finding it interesting. (Caveat: We may not be the typical viewer. We’re geekily fasincated by preemption, just as we are by ERISA, a statute that frequently raises preemption questions.)
We’re also enjoying the occasional camera shots of the audience. E.g., the woman in Kermit-the-Frog green, who was vigorously scratching her nose (and whose facial expression suggested she was oddly intrigued by the nasal itchiness).
When television cameras are in the room, you really must be on your best behavior.
More observations, after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Surely Better Than a Daytime Soap”

Last week we asked for your input on the most flattering hairstyle for Judge Janice Rogers Brown, of the exceedingly prestigious D.C. Circuit. Judge Brown, a high-powered and conservative jurist, may someday be the first African-American woman to sit on the Supreme Court.
We offered you a choice of two looks: “Bangs Janice” and “Perm Janice.” And “Bangs Janice” won in a landslide, with 92 percent of the vote.*
We can see why. Consider this reader email (with photographic support):

This is an easy one: “Bangs Janice” all the way. With bangs, Judge Brown looks like the hip and attractive comedienne, Wanda Sykes:

janice rogers brown and wanda sykes.JPG

“Perm Janice,” on the other hand, calls to mind a different black woman:

janice rogers brown and aunt jemima.JPG
We agree; Judge Brown should steer clear of that second look. Left-wingers already try to reduce Judge Brown to a racial stereotype (as did when it published an offensive cartoon of her). Judge Brown doesn’t need to help them do it.**
Do you know of a prominent figure within the legal profession who sports two (or more) divergent looks? If so, please let us know. We’re always seeking other candidates to go before the jury in ATL’s Courtroom of Style.
* One reader objected to our hairstyle terminology. But even if our terms were erroneous, we provided photographs to make clear which hairstyle was which. So voters should not have been confused.
** Conservatives were outraged by the JRB cartoon. In the words of Byron York, the cartoon depicted Judge Brown “as a fat black woman with huge lips, an unruly Afro, and an enormous backside.”
Earlier: A Random Friday Poll: The Hairstyles of Judge Janice Rogers Brown

* Gay marriages legally-cognizable-relationships-that-will-probably-get-called-civil-unions are coming to New Jersey.
ted olson lady booth.JPG* Superstar lawyer Ted Olson, who is not gay, got married — to a lovely lady named Lady. And ATL has the exclusive photos to prove it.
* Law firms are tying the knot too. The latest to head for the altar: Dewey Ballantine and Orrick.
* Things are going less smoothly for celebrities. Country music star Sara Evans is getting divorced. Jane Pauley is filing suit. Naomi Campbell is getting arrested. And Foxy Brown is getting sentenced.
* Paralegal pay ain’t half bad, as long as you work for Biglaw — and put in lots of overtime.
* Think grammar and punctuation are silly and useless? Listen to the cautionary tale of the costly comma.
* Justice Scalia: You like him, you really like him!
* As for your Least Favorite Supreme Court Justice, we’ll keep the polls open over the weekend. To vote, click here.
* And if you’d like to cast a ballot in a more frivolous poll, help Judge Janice Rogers Brown pick a hairstyle. To vote, click here.

janice rogers brown two hairstyles.JPGOn Fridays, we administer random reader polls here at Above the Law. Last week, for example, we asked you to vote for your Favorite Supreme Court Justice.
(That poll is now closed — and Justice Scalia won, in case you’re wondering. But we’re still taking votes in our poll for LEAST Favorite Supreme Court Justice.)
Today’s poll is a little less weighty. It relates to Judge Janice Rogers Brown, who currently sits on the super-prestigious D.C. Circuit (from whence many Supreme Court justices have come).
Judge Brown, a former justice of the California Supreme Court, is a smart, outspoken judicial conservative — a judicial diva, if you will. She also happens to be an African-American woman. Not surprisingly, JRB is frequently mentioned as a possible Supreme Court nominee in a Republican administration.
Enough background. For your reference, the top right photo is “Bangs Janice,” and the bottom right photo is “Perm Janice.” Here’s the poll:

Which hairstyle is better for Judge Janice Rogers Brown of the D.C. Circuit?
Bangs Janice
Perm Janice
Free polls from

We look forward to the results. Thanks for voting!
A Preemptive Rebuttal to the P.C. Police: We do NOT need your lectures on the long and complex history of African-American women and their hairstyles. We are NOT making any grand statement on issues of self-image and self-representation, the highly charged intersection of racism and feminism, or any other weighty subject.
This poll is nothing more than the federal judicial version of the “which look is better” polls that appear in celebrity mags like US Weekly and In Touch. We just want to find out which JRB hairstyle our readers prefer. (We have an opinion, but we’ll keep it to ourselves for now.)
In future polls, we will ask ATL readers about the hair and fashion choices of lawyers and judges from every conceivable demographic group. So don’t read anything into this poll. We’re starting with Janice Rogers Brown because, well, we think she’s magnificent. And we want her to have the full benefit of these poll results as she styles herself for future public appearances.

1. They’re both having A REALLY CRAPPY Thursday.
2. They both like to SPY ON OTHER PEOPLE (e.g., fellow board members, husbands).
patricia dunn pattie dunn pat dunn jeanine pirro.JPG
(Gavel bang: David Minkin)
Hearings Open on H.P.’s Spying: Patricia Dunn Testifies [New York Times]
Pirro Hits Trail After Inquiry Emerges [New York Times]
Jeanine Pirro: Probe Me? Probe You! [Gawker]
Only in New York: Jeanine Pirro, Non-Discreet Stalker [Jossip]

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