Kids

Remember Judge Sam Sparks, of the Western District of Texas? He’s a colorful judge with a robust sense of humor, as well as a low tolerance for lawyer shenanigans and quarrels.

Back in 2004, Judge Sparks compared bickering lawyers in his court to kindergarteners. His saucy order made the email rounds, first in Texas, then around the country.

And now he offers up this poetic order, in rhymed couplets:

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The rest of this judicial ditty, including the punchline, appears after the jump.

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Some of you have questions about this CNN video report on a 19-year-old who’s about to graduate with a 4.0 GPA from the University of Michigan and head off to law school. Here are our thoughts on Nicole Matisse:
* She’s amazingly attractive. Most of those child-prodigy spelling-bee-winner types have thick glasses and an overbite.
* Surely the most pressing question: With a 4.0 GPA from Michigan, why is she going to fourth-tier Wayne State University Law School? Surely she could have gotten into most, if not all, of the top 10 (or 14, or whatever Georgetown is insisting is the cream-of-the-crop number these days). And at 19, she’s old enough to venture a bit further from home.
* What’s up with the typing demonstration? Is words-per-minute now the definitive measure of otherworldly intelligence?
* When asked to name her easiest college class, she responds: “Behavioral Neuroscience.” Showboating, anyone? We stopped liking her at that point in the video.
* How funny is that Wayne State law student being interviewed outside the school? “There’s a good chance I was in the entirely wrong classroom for that test.” The reporter then asks the young man how the prodigy will be regarded at the law school next year. Gee, a 19-year-old hottie brainiac–she’ll probably struggle.
* The reporter’s final comment is a new low in pathetic summings-up: “She won’t be 19 forever. Next February, she’ll be 20.” This just in: The year after that, she’ll be 21.

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Former Santa Clara law professor Murdaugh Stuart Madden, Jr. is facing federal child pornography charges. The San Jose Mercury News reports:

A former visiting Santa Clara University Law School instructor faces felony child pornography charges, federal prosecutors said today.
Murdaugh Stuart Madden Jr., could face 10 years in prison and $250,000 in fines if he is convicted on charges filed by the United States Attorney’s office today.
Prosecutors charge that Madden kept child pornography on Dell laptop computers he used for his work at Santa Clara and Pace University in New York.
Officials at Santa Clara refused to comment on the case, other than to say that Madden was an instructor for eight months – September 2005 through April 2006.
It is unclear how many images prosecutors allege Madden kept or how he obtained them.
According to court records, prosecutors believe that Madden received at least some of the illicit images during his time at Santa Clara.

clarence-thomas-sm.jpgNo one has been quite sure why Justice Clarence Thomas has been recusing himself from Wachovia cases. The mystery is apparently solved; Thomas’s son works at Wachovia Securities. From The Blog of Legal Times:

For the last two years, Justice Clarence Thomas has consistently recused himself in cases in which Wachovia Bank is a party — most notably the landmark decision last week in Watters v. Wachovia Bank, a win for federal regulation of national bank subsidiaries. On Monday, Thomas stepped aside in the denial of review of yet another Wachovia case — as well as in Turnbaugh v. National City Bank of Indiana, which did not involve Wachovia directly but raised the same issue at the Watters case.

Thomas’s financial disclosure form reveals no ownership of Wachovia stock, so what gives? Thomas does not reveal his reasons for recusal in public, but we have just confirmed that Thomas’s son Jamal works at Wachovia Securities, a part of Wachovia Corporation, at its headquarters in Richmond, Virginia. We haven’t been able to learn his title or what area he works in, but that is almost certainly the explanation for his father’s recusal.

In other Justice Thomas news, there is a new biography out entitled Supreme Discomfort: The Divided Soul of Clarence Thomas, by Kevin Merida and Michael Fletcher and published by Doubleday.

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The trend of on-site day care is catching on at law firms. Sounds like a good thing, right?
But take a close look at this article. The intro anecdote is all about how when work gets “too intense,” a 61-year-old founding partner unwinds by visiting the firm’s nursery to hang out with other lawyers’ kids! She calls it a “baby break.” Yes, the partner is a woman, so it’s not quite as creepy as it could be. But it’s still pretty creepy!
Firms already get every figurative ounce of their associates’ blood, sweat, and tears, and now they want to put our offspring in their human petting zoos? What’s next, partners harvesting associate placentas to make life-restoring lotions for their wizened skin?
Seriously, raise your hand if you want your kid serving as some kind of spa tonic for your co-workers. We’re getting a weird vision of tiny babies lined up in their cribs while lawyers in suits draw sustenance from their sweet little talcum-powder scents, sort of like in The Matrix.

Supreme Court hallway Above the Law Above the Law Above the Law.JPGWe’re interested in figuring out how many law clerks for the upcoming Supreme Court Term, October Term 2007, are women or minorities. But we don’t know all these folks personally (much as we might like to). So we need your help.
After the jump, you’ll see a list of the Supreme Court clerks for OT 2007. Check it out. Do you know any of these individuals?
Okay. It appears to us that of the 37 clerks, 14 are women. Is this correct? In terms of clerks with gender-ambiguous names, we’ve categorized the following as male: Aditya Bamzai (see here), and C.J. Mahoney (the “C.” stands for “Curtis”).
As for ethnicity, we’re speculating — based largely on surnames — that the following individuals are Asian American: Aditya Bamzai, Michael Chu, and Bert Huang (whom we know from college, so we’re pretty sure about him). But we’re sure that we’re missing other minority law clerks from our tally.
Can you help us out? If you know of any other OT 2007 clerks who are minorities, or if our tally of female law clerks is off, please note that in the comments (or send us an email).
Update: In case you’re wondering, we’re collecting this information for a freelance piece we’re working on. (In addition to writing for ATL, we freelance for various print publications on the side.)
The full list of OT 2007 clerks appears after the jump. Thanks in advance for your tips!

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “October Term 2007 Clerk Hiring: A Request for Information”

Kate Moss Katherine Moss model supermodel Above the Law blog.jpg* Like you, this attorney and concerned citizen opted for law school because science just wasn’t her thing. [J-Walk Blog]
* Kettles Retailers are being told they’re black warned not to infringe upon Kate Moss’s much-hyped and copyrighted “Pot”-shop Topshop collection. [Fashionista; Retail Week]
(An explanatory note for those of you who couldn’t care less: Topshop is an H&M-esque retailer that rips off designs from everybody so that broke girls and boys can swath themselves in sweatshop-produced crap and still have money left over for cigarettes.)
* Power may be the great aphrodisiac, but in my experience, sexual harassers in the professional workplace are just pervs or losers who couldn’t find a date in high school. Sometimes it’s that simple. [Feminist Law Professors]
* In these violent times, “Red Asphalt” just doesn’t do the trick in scaring the bejesus out of high school drivers. [Central Ohio]
* School lunches + biometrics = ACLU. Of course. [Turn to 10]

Ryan Gosling Ryan T Gosling Ryan Thomas Gosling pic photo Ryan Gosling Above the Law blog legal tabloid.JPG* Just don’t do it. If law enforcement officials in formerly oppressed Eastern European nations are on the case, then maybe we should set a good example. [Ceskenoviny.cz ]
* My dad told me that in his day, hazing meant newbies got their balls painted blue. Painting someone’s privates is gross alright — but not criminal. [Phillyburbs.com]
* Movie and TV ADAs are always improbably young and hot, and none younger and hotter than Ryan Gosling. [Slate]
* Creative teaching fails once again. [KJRH]
* Whatever your stance on gun control and the culture of violence, we can all agree that marshmallows pose little safety risk (while also serving as a tasty treat). [Arizona Range News]

library Above the Law blog.jpg* The headline screams “Britney!” But, in fact, this plaintiff was not wearing too-long jeans and fleeing the press — he was tasered. [Houston Chronicle]
* In my college days, this kind of activity was confined to private study booths known as “weenie bins.” We respected the books. [AP via Yahoo! News]
* Are royalties drying up, or is this (PDF) a legit lawsuit? [Los Angeles Times]
* Is teamwork encouraged in law school? Well, there is no “I” in team, but there sure is one in “Order of the Coif.” [Law School Innovation]

old lady elderly woman drug dealer Above the Law Blog.jpg* This is what will happen if we don’t reform the Social Security system. [Decatur Daily News]
* There’s a reason this, like the mainstream dairy industry, is regulated. Plus, it’s not exactly suitable for dunking oreos. [Inside Bay Area]
* If you need a break from US politics, then check out the other presidential free-for-all, going down in France. [RTE News]
* Fleshbot is not just a website. [Pink Tentacle via The Trademark Blog]
* Is internet radio on its way out? I don’t much care about Sirius, but what about Pandora, or the other stations you stream at work? [Tech News World]

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