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prison behind bars Above the Law blog.jpg* Iraqi government OKs Chemical Ali execution. [CNN]
* Army revamping contract process in light of fraud allegations. [MSNBC]
* Obama supporter McCaskill introduces bill to officially approve birth citizenship in situations like McCain’s. [New York Times]
* 1 in every 100 American adults imprisoned. [Washington Post]
* Bahraini Alba sues Alcoa, alleging corruption and foreign kick-backs. [WSJ Law Blog]

Ricky Gervais The Office Above the Law blog.jpgOur tipster quips, “This guy makes Ricky Gervais look like a saint.” From the Salt Lake Tribune:

A supervisor at a motivational coaching business in Provo is accused of waterboarding an employee in front of his sales team to demonstrate that they should work as hard on sales as the employee had worked to breathe.

In a lawsuit filed last month, former Prosper, Inc. salesman Chad Hudgens alleges his managers also allowed the supervisor to draw mustaches on employees’ faces, take away their chairs and beat on their desks with a wooden paddle “because it resulted in increased revenues for the company.”

Sounds like the defendant would fit right in at Biglaw. Does your firm need a new Director of Paralegal Services? Drop him a line.
Employee’s suit: Company used waterboarding to motivate workers [Salt Lake Tribune]

Linda Greenhouse 6 New York Times Abovethelaw Above the Law blog.jpg* Linda Greenhouse to $300K! [New York Observer via ABA Journal]
* Duties of a law school dean: attend parties, appear at conferences, talk to alums. And don’t forget the herding of cats — aka law professors. [TJ's Double Play]
* Even law review editors screw up sometimes. “Constructive acceptance”? [Concurring Opinions]
* Who’d have thunk it? Sometimes blogging can help people. And stuff. [Legal Blog Watch]
* Ethan Leib dresses up as a giant chicken to teach Contracts, thereby guaranteeing ABA accreditation. [PrawfsBlawg]
* Orin Kerr points out online interviews “with eight of the nine current Supreme Court Justices (all but Souter) about legal writing, advocacy, and the process of deciding cases and writing opinions.” [Volokh Conspiracy]
* Ann Althouse on John McCain and being a “natural-born citizen.” [Althouse]
* Hillary to Russert: You can’t handle the truth! About my tax returns. [TaxProf Blog]

AutoAdmit xoxohth Anthony Ciolli Above the Law blog.JPGThere’s a new development in the well-publicized AutoAdmit lawsuit. The defendant known as “AK47″ has filed a pseudonymous, pro se motion to quash the plaintiffs’ subpeona. The memorandum in support of the motion appears here (PDF)
Over at the WSJ Law Blog, reporter Amir Efrati — who first broke the news of this case’s filing, and has done a great job covering it — describes the motion as “well-composed…. which leads us to suspect that ‘he’ is an aspiring lawyer.” He also notes that AK47 “shows he’s done some research, citing a host of Internet law precedents he says bolster his arguments.”
But over at the Legal Satyricon, Professor Marc Randazza is less impressed: “My prediction — had Mr. AK47 written his motion a little more skillfully, he might have had a great chance. Unfortunately for him, the motion is so poorly drafted that it will take some charity on the Court’s part for it to fly.”
We’re not surprised that Professor Randazza applies a demanding standard. After all, he practices First Amendment law. He previously (and successfully) represented AutoAdmit exec Anthony Ciolli, who was dropped from the lawsuit back in November.
Feel free to share your thoughts on any of this in the comments.
AutoAdmit Case – Motion to Quash by “AK47″ [The Legal Satyricon / Marc Randazza]
AutoAdmit Suit Update: Defendant “AK47″ Responds [WSJ Law Blog]

Sound of Music Julie Andrews Above the Law blog.jpgSeveral tipsters wrote us about the upcoming firm retreat of Quinn Emanuel — or the “2008 Firm Hike,” as it’s officially called. It’s taking place from July 9–13, over in… SWITZERLAND!!!
From one incoming QE summer:

I’m summering at Quinn, and I just found out that the annual firm hike is going to be in Interlaken, Switzerland. It’s a four-day trip, capped by a 25 km hike in the alps. Summer associate perk watch?

We asked this individual if they’re excited about the hike:

Hell yes. Forget ballgames and cooking classes, this is a serious trip. I chose Quinn because of the work hard-play hard mentality and outdoors-y vibe, but this is taking it to another level. It is rough that it’s such a short trip, but I’d guess that a bunch of full-time employees will extend it by a few days.

More discussion — some pro- and anti-hike sentiment, from full-time QE lawyers, plus comment from John Quinn himself (in an email with capitalization!!!) — after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “The Hills Are Alive / With the Sound of… Quinn Emanuel?”

Richard Posner Richard A Posner Above the Law Legal Blog.jpgWe’ve been on the law school speaking circuit lately. At the start of this month, we served as keynote speaker of the Mid-Atlantic APALSA Conference, at the University of Pennsylvania Law School (conference description here, photos here). Next month, we’ll be speaking at Stanford Law School, about how the web is changing the legal profession.
Last week we were at the University of Chicago, for this event:

Richard Posner and David Lat: “Judges as Public Figures”

Last week, the University of Chicago’s chapter of the Federalist Society hosted a panel discussion on “Judges as Public Figures” with Judge Richard Posner and David Lat, author of two popular legal blogs, Above the Law and Underneath Their Robes.

David Lat’s relationship with Judge Posner began when he was the anonymous author of Underneath Their Robes, a blog supposedly written by a young and prestige-obsessed female lawyer. Judge Posner was the first to unmask “Article Three Groupie” (the anonymous author’s pseudonym) as being male. The discussion was moderated by Professor Lior Strahilevitz, and a recording is available here (mp3).

It was an honor and a pleasure to serve on a panel with Judge Posner and Professor Strahilevitz. The standing-room-only crowd was engaged and enthusiastic — and apparently entertained, based on the frequent outbursts of laughter.
You can access the podcast by clicking here (mp3). Thanks again to the University of Chicago Federalist Society for inviting us to participate in such a delightful event.
Podcast: Richard Posner and David Lat on “Judges as Public Figures” [University of Chicago Law School Faculty Blog]
Emerging Asia: Shedding New Light on the Legal Landscape [University of Pennsylvania Law School]
How the Web Is Changing the Legal Profession [Stanford Law School]

John McCain Senator John McCain Above the Law blog.jpgAlthough many believe he was carried down to earth by a choir of angels, the taxalicious Barack Obama was actually born in Hawaii. So he doesn’t face the same sticky question about presidential eligibility that John McCain confronts. From the New York Times:

The question has nagged at the parents of Americans born outside the continental United States for generations: Dare their children aspire to grow up and become president? In the case of Senator John McCain of Arizona, the issue is becoming more than a matter of parental daydreaming.

Mr. McCain’s likely nomination as the Republican candidate for president and the happenstance of his birth in the Panama Canal Zone in 1936 are reviving a musty debate that has surfaced periodically since the founders first set quill to parchment and declared that only a “natural-born citizen” can hold the nation’s highest office.

To address the question, the McCain camp hired the best legal talent money can buy:

But given mounting interest, the campaign recently asked Theodore B. Olson, a former solicitor general now advising Mr. McCain, to prepare a detailed legal analysis. “I don’t have much doubt about it,” said Mr. Olson, who added, though, that he still needed to finish his research.

So, what do you think? Take our reader poll. We realize you probably haven’t researched the issue. But not having completed his research — i.e., “my recent SCOTUS-clerk associate is still surfing Westlaw” — didn’t stop Ted Olson from having an opinion.
One ATL tipster had this quick take: “SCOTUS seems kinda gray, but going by the Insular Cases…it ain’t lookin’ good. Maybe an open thread for people to comment and discuss?”

McCain’s Canal Zone Birth Prompts Queries About Whether That Rules Him Out [New York Times]
Does John McCain Have a Birthplace Problem? [WSJ Law Blog]

Monica Goodling small 2 Michael Krempasky Above the Law blog.JPGMake that a Post-script — a shout-out in the Washington Post, for both the happy couple and ATL. From the WaPo’s delicious Reliable Source column (which has new details about the Goodling/Krempasky engagement, including their ages and the story of their courtship):

Engaged: Monica Goodling, 34, the former Alberto Gonzales adviser, to Michael Krempasky, 33, a top PR guy at Edelman and founding blogger with

The betrothal of the Pennsylvania natives (first reported by the legal blog proves that even a congressional subpoena can have a happy ending: The two dated just after college, then lost touch for a decade — until he saw her name last spring in the front-page stories about the controversial firings of several U.S. attorneys, and called to wish her well. He surprised her with a Valentine’s Day proposal at the same restaurant where they spent V-Day 12 years ago; no date set.

It’s a quintessential D.C. romance: congressional testimony leading to a love connection!
Additional commentary appears at Wonkette, TPM Muckraker, and Jezebel (among others).
Love, Etc. [The Reliable Source / Washington Post]
Earlier: Breaking: Monica Goodling Is Engaged!

  • 28 Feb 2008 at 11:00 AM
  • Uncategorized

Biglaw Perk Watch: Skadden to 18 Weeks

Skadden Arps Slate Meagher Flom Abovethelaw Above the Law online legal tabloid.jpgWe don’t think that we’ll post every single announcement about new and improved parental leave policies, since Justin Bernold is already tracking them through this handy-dandy table. But we will let you know about the big ones.
Today’s announcement qualifies. The latest firm to move to the new benchmark of 18 weeks paid maternity leave is one of the biggest of the big: Skadden. When all those Skadden hotties become Skadden mommies, they’ll be able to enjoy 50 percent more time with their kids than before (the old policy was 12 weeks).
Announcement, after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Biglaw Perk Watch: Skadden to 18 Weeks”

Linda Greenhouse 6 New York Times Abovethelaw Above the Law blog.jpgWe already discussed this news yesterday. But in our earlier post, we promised to let you know if and when Linda Greenhouse got back to us — and she kindly did, sending the following message to ATL about her rumored departure as the New York Times’s Supreme Court correspondent:

As you may know – the Times put a newsroom-wide buyout package on the table last week, in an effort to shrink the staff by 100. For someone of my seniority (40 years) the terms are very attractive, and I’ve told my bureau chief that I plan to take it. I was planning to retire in a few years, and giving up this package would have basically meant working for free – which seemed foolish, much as I love my job. I plan to keep writing about the court in various forums.

(I should note that this is not official, because the buyout window is open until March 5, after which the Times will respond to the individual volunteers – so my response to you is based on the assumption that my acceptance of their offer will in turn be accepted.)

Greenhouse also confirmed her move to the Associated Press (via WSJ Law Blog).
During her 30 years covering the Court for the Times, Linda Greenhouse has sometimes been controversial. See here, here, and here, for perhaps the most recent controversy.
It cannot be denied, however, that Greenhouse has tremendous knowledge of the Supreme Court’s history and inner workings, as well as unparalleled access to the justices themselves. Few journalists are such superstars that their comings and goings are covered by the AP.
Greenhouse leaves big shoes to fill, and it will be interesting to see how her successor fares. How much of her clout was the institutional clout of the New York Times, and how much of it was Greenhouse qua Greenhouse? We’ll find out soon enough.
Feel free to speculate about replacements for the legendary Linda Greenhouse, in the comments.
NYT’s Greenhouse Takes Buyout Offer [Associated Press via WSJ Law Blog]
Public and Private Lives, Intersecting [New York Times]
Lay Off Linda [Slate]
Far From Sober [National Review Online]
Earlier: Is the Margo Channing of One First Street Taking Her Final Bow?

Last year, we asked you whether work was busy at your firms, and only about half of you said yes. Patent attorneys were particularly busy nationwide (and remain quite popular), while associates in real estate and structured finance were pretty slow in many markets.
In today’s ATL / Lateral Link survey, we dig a little deeper into which practice areas are hot (or not) at your firm.
Update: This survey is now closed. Click here for the results.

Justin Bernold is a Director at Lateral Link, the sponsor of this survey.

Keyontyli Goffney Taleon Goffney gay porn stars burglary Above the Law blog.jpg* Relatives of murdered girls may sue D.C. [Washington Post]
* Humane Society files suit against USDA over recalled beef. [MSNBC]
* Pay raises hurting PPP? [WSJ Law Blog]
* Two hapless robbers walk into a biker bar… [CNN]
* … while two crafty robbers rob a robber jeweler… [MSNBC]
* … and a not-so-ambiguously-gay porn duo (pictured) gets arrested for rooftop burglaries. [Philadelphia Daily News]

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