A summary of the action, courtesy of Howard Bashman (aka “Ho Bash,” as one commenter dubbed him):
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit holds that the American Civil Liberties Union and its co-plaintiffs lack standing to challenge the National Security Administration’s interception without warrants of certain telephone and email communications…
Circuit Judge Alice M. Batchelder issued the lead opinion, and Circuit Judge Julia Smith Gibbons issued an opinion concurring in the judgment. Judge Gibbons’s opinion begins, “The disposition of all of the plaintiffs’ claims depends upon the single fact that the plaintiffs have failed to provide evidence that they are personally subject to the TSP. Without this evidence, on a motion for summary judgment, the plaintiffs cannot establish standing for any of their claims, constitutional or statutory….”
And Circuit Judge Ronald Lee Gilman dissented. He would hold that the plaintiffs possess standing and that “the [Terrorist Surveillance Program] as originally implemented violated the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act of 1978.”
Is this ruling a surprise? Not so much. First, most legal analysts weredeeplydisappointed by the handiwork of Judge Anna Diggs Taylor (E.D. Mich.), the district judge in this case.
Second, here’s a telling detail from the Sixth Circuit website:
Administrative Law Judge Roy Pearson is still pressing (harhar) his $54 million lawsuit over a pair of pants. From the Washington Post’s Marc Fisher:
Despite a clear finding by D.C. Superior Court Judge Judith Bartnoff that Pearson’s case against Custom Cleaners had no merit and that the cleaners’ possible misplacing of a pair of Pearson’s pants was not worth a penny to the plaintiff, Pearson is back.
He wrote to defense lawyer Christopher Manning this week to let the Chung family know that Pearson plans to file today a motion arguing that Bartnoff failed to address Pearson’s legal claims and asking the judge to reverse her verdict in the case.
If you can stomach it, read the rest after the jump.
* American Lawyer Media: Going, going, gone. Sold, for $630 million, to Incisive Media of the U.K. [Fishbowl NY; WSJ Law Blog]
* When animals crazy bearded men attack. [Breitbart TV (video) via Drudge Report]
* A Biglaw partner is not like a store clerk at the local convenience store. Or is he? [National Law Journal (subscription)]
* More about the late Tom Heftler, former managing partner of Stroock & Stroock & Lavan. [New York Observer]
If you’re driving 100 miles per hour, but in a hybrid vehicle, can you still get pulled over? Unfortunately for Al Gore III, yes. From Reuters:
The 24-year-old son of former Vice President Al Gore was arrested for drug possession on Wednesday after he was stopped for speeding in his hybrid Toyota Prius, a sheriff’s official said.
Al Gore III — whose father is a leading advocate of policies to fight global warming — was driving his environmentally friendly car at about 100 miles per hour on a freeway south of Los Angeles when he was pulled over by an Orange County sheriff’s deputy at about 2:15 a.m.
Speed limits suck. Why can’t we institute a system of “speeding offsets,” like the market for carbon offsets? Grandmothers in Boca Raton, who consistently drive 10 miles under the speed limit, could supplement their incomes by selling the right to speed. Who needs Social Security?
After the traffic stop, things only got worse for young Al. From the New York Daily News:
Deputies then searched the car, and Gore faced an inconvenient truth when they allegedly found a small amount of pot and mind-altering pills – Xanax, Valium, Vicodin and Adderall.
“He does not have a prescription for any of those drugs,” [a sheriff's spokesman] said.
Finally, we loved this little detail:
Al the 3rd lives in Los Angeles and works for GOOD magazine, which describes itself as “media for people who give a damn.”
Kelley Drye & Warren partner Justine Clark looks like a younger, brunette version of Madeleine Albright. But the similarities probably end there, since one would expect the former Secretary of State to pay her taxes.
From the Temporary Attorney blog:
Justine Clark, a partner at Kelly Drye & Warren, just plead guilty for failing to pay state income taxes….
Despite the fact that KDW has seen a steady growth in profits per partner, and despite the fact that KDW has benefited from a steady stream of contract attorney outsourcing, Clark, with greed unquenched, went ahead and screwed New York State out of close to $200,000, based on her $2.7 million earnings.
Her penalty? A slap on the wrist misdemeanor.
Okay, that’s a little harsh. As the New York Post notes, Clark earned $2.68 million not in a single year, but over the course of five years (2000 – 2004). That averages out to a little over $500,000 a year.
And in New York City, teeming with i-bankers and hedge funders, you’re a pauper if if you’re not taking home seven figures per annum. So can we really blame Justine Clark, struggling to keep up with the Joneses, for trying to keep a little more for herself? Kelly Drye & Warren – Corporate Criminal [Temporary Attorney] Docs, lawyers prove taxing to N.Y. State [New York Daily News] Tax-Cheating Lawyers Nabbed [New York Post] Justine Clark bio [Kelley Drye & Warren]
Dickstein Shapiro has raised to the $160K scale, for its offices in Los Angeles and Washington, DC. Those offices are now on the same salary schedule as the firm’s New York office (previously posted here).
The email announcing the pay raise, from firm chairman Michael Nannes, appears after the jump. It came out some time ago (the middle of last month), but we didn’t receive it until this week.
You can check out the Dickstein Shapiro email, and discuss salary-related matters more generally, after the jump.
In our recent New York Times op-edpiece praising lavish signing bonuses for Supreme Court clerks, we wrote that the bonuses “are expected to reach $250,000 this year — paid on top of starting salaries approaching $200,000.”
Some people have inquired into the factual basis for our statement. As it turns out, we did some actual reporting to support it. The reporting never made it into the final op-ed piece, but we’re happy to provide the details here.
If you’re curious, read the rest of this post, after the jump.
We all scream for ice cream! And that includes high-ranking officials of the U.S. Department of Justice.
Here’s our latest legal celebrity sighting:
Last night I watched the fireworks from the South Lawn of the White House. The event had a very DC feel to it: everyone there was quasi-famous, even if you couldn’t figure out why.
But I did recognize one person: Deputy Attorney General Paul McNulty, the second-highest-ranking official at the DOJ. He was dressed casually, in a red polo shirt, and was sitting on a blanket with his wife and kids.
McNulty may not be Brad Pitt — but here in Washington, he might as well have been. People kept going up to him, introducing themselves, and having their picture taken with him. This is clearly the dorkiest city in the entire country (and I count myself among the dorks, since I recognized him too).
I discreetly took two photographs of DAG McNulty munching on a Dove ice cream bar. Here they are.
High-ranking Justice Department officials: they’re just like us. They eat ice cream bars! Earlier: Every DAG Has His Day
The Honorable Robert E. Keeton, of the District of Massachusetts, passed away earlier this week. Judge Keeton was a Harvard Law School professor, a World War II hero, and an editor of the classic Prosser & Keeton on Torts. Update: As noted in the comments, Judge Keeton’s brother, Werdner Page Keeton, was the lead Keeton on the book.
Judge Keeton liked to tell funny stories during his weekly chambers meetings. From the Boston Globe:
He particularly enjoyed telling about the time his mother-in-law came to his house and made biscuits.
“She went into the cabinet and she took out what she thought was flour,” [judicial assistant Lily] Diblasi said. “She made biscuits and put them on the table with all the other fixings. The judge took a bite and said, ‘Mother, these biscuits are quite good but where did you find the flour to make them?’ It turned out to be wall paper paste. . . But he graciously ate it.”
* TB, or not TB? [CNN]
* Pardon still a possibility for Libby. [CNN]
* Prof. Berman discusses sentencing, commutation, and pardon (scroll down). [Sentencing Law and Policy]
* Developments in murder case of pregnant Canton woman against police officer. [CNN]
* California Supreme Court ends decades-old Raiders lawsuit. [SI]
* “Declawing & the law” by Lattman. [WSJ Law Blog]
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When Chintan Panchal decided to leave a global BigLaw partnership to start his own firm, he could only hope that he would face the high-quality problem of firm building that many had cautioned him about. Focused on the uncertainty surrounding of a new firm launch, he decided to tackle staffing needs, IT challenges, and financial planning requirements after he had built up his legal practice.
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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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