Kids

David Hasselhoff Above the Law blog.jpg* $3.19 a gallon for this? [CNN]
* Hasselhoff videotape (no, not the German music video) leads to loss of custody rights. [
CNN]
* Bat-ban Begins — groups sue to overturn NYC ordinance.[SI]
* Senators expand Attorneygate probe. [MSNBC]
* Ethics of “pillow angel” surgery called unlawful. [CNN]

prom high school senior prom Above the Law blog.jpg* It’s prom season, when schools discriminate against singles (and misguided girls hope that a “prom baby” will save them from the trials and tribulations of college). [Boston.com]
* Decent folks (and despite all my hating, that’s most of us) have a visceral reaction to hate crimes — but out on the horizon also loom 1984 and Minority Report. [Agoraphilia]
* To my knowledge, Mr. Chow has never been a Biglaw partner. [Yahoo! News]
* That is 750 years of bitch servitude. [TwinCities.com]
* At least the plaintiff spared the Mets from an additional lawsuit by cushioning the fall of the 300 lb. man and has not defected to the Yankees, although the latter probably turns on the outcome of the lawsuit. [Sports Illustrated]

Whole Lesbian Sex Book Felice Newman Above the Law blog.jpgWe realize this news broke last week. But we were on vacation — and it’s just too good to omit from these pages. From Metro.co.uk:

A father in Arkansas is looking for $20,000 in compensation for his teenage sons, after they found a book in a public library called The Whole Lesbian Sex Book.

According to Earl Adams, his sons – aged 14 and 16 – were ‘greatly disturbed’ by Felice Newman’s classic lesbian sex manual, described by its publishers as ‘the most comprehensive sex guide available for lesbians.’

And now he is demanding $10,000 from the city of Bentonville for each boy. The volume has already been withdrawn from the library shelves, and the director of the library has resigned – although she is adamant she left for personal reasons, not in response to the complaints.

So what’s the basis for the $20,000 damages claim? Per Overlawyered:

[This incident] happened, Adams said, while [his sons] were browsing for material on military academies (titter ye not!). The shock to their sensibilities from exposure to the “immoral” volume resulted in the boys being “greatly disturbed” and undergoing “many sleepless nights in our house.”

Simply ridiculous. Ask these boys in five years whether they still find lesbians “greatly disturb[ing].”
Also, The Whole Lesbian Sex Book has been critically acclaimed. Check out this review:

Cure for cancer? End to world hunger? What’s left to do after the publication of Felice Newman’s definitive guide to lesbian sex? Drawing on a wide range of published sources as well as her own notoriously graphic questionnaire circulated by e-mail… Newman has compiled an exhaustively thorough how-to guide for practices as exotic as play piercings and as pedestrian as oral sex.

Umm, who describes oral sex as “pedestrian”? Sounds like mistakes are being made in this reviewer’s household.
(Also, why are we not surprised that The Whole Lesbian Sex Book has been effusively praised on, of all websites, Amazon?)
Saw sex book by mistake; $10K apiece demanded [Overlawyered]
Man seeks compensation for lesbian trauma [Metro.co.uk]
The Whole Lesbian Sex Book [Amazon.com]


Sheryl Crow Above the Law blog.jpg* Cheating in B-school… Surely this would never happen in law school. But if one of the wrongly accused lacrosse players got a highly coveted, six-figure job, then surely these guys will pull through. [New York Times]
* Kids always suffer the most in a divorce. [The Oregonian]
* Inspired by that handy pageant trick, local politicians have also approved free pots of vaseline at schools and churches. [Concurring Opinions]
* In politics as in music, Sheryl Crow isn’t for everyone. But I still really like her first hit single, Leaving Las Vegas. [Mirror of Justice]
* Apparently, today is Law Day. But if a holiday or designated special day does not involve cake or presents, I just can’t get that excited. [Professor Bainbridge; WSJ Law Blog]

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:

Keystone Media Hancock order 1 Above the Law blog.jpg

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

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Judge Sam Sparks Does It Again”

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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”

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