Quote of the Day

I didn’t change my story. I simply got the wording right.

– Republican Herman Cain, Election 2012 hopeful, contesting the claim that he has flip-flopped on his accounts of striking an “agreement” versus negotiating a “settlement” with regard to his late-nineties National Restaurant Association sexual harassment scandal.

Whenever a judge turns to rational-basis analysis, he’s basically saying, ‘You think two plus two equals five, and I don’t know how to add.’

– Professor Richard Epstein, at an interesting debate sponsored earlier this evening by the Columbia Law School Federalist Society. Professor Epstein and Chief Judge Alex Kozinski (9th Cir.) debated the merits of Kelo v. City of New London (2005). Professor Epstein attacked Kelo and Chief Judge Kozinski defended the decision.

(The event was standing room only, even though tonight was Halloween. Clearly this was more fun to CLS students than donning cheap costumes from Ricky’s and marching around the Village in a state of inebriation.)

Make a law that for every student graduating from law school, he replaces an existing lawyer. That existing lawyer is then sent to an island to make dog bonnets and leg warmers. In a way, it’s a lottery designed to dissuade people from wanting to be lawyers, and increase the quality of our nation’s dog bonnets and leg warmers.

Greg Gutfeld, host of Fox News Channel’s The Five, proposing a solution to the nation’s law student debt woes.

He has really run the table of conservative causes. Paul is such a good advocate and such a cheerful friend that it’s easy to forget how conservative he is.

Walter Dellinger, former acting Solicitor General during the Clinton Administration, commenting to the New York Times about Paul Clement, former Solicitor General during the Bush Administration.

Lawyers, journalists, investment bankers — they are liabilities, not leaders, in the zombie-infested world….

In the zombie apocalypse, your J.D. is worthless — which is actually not so different from the real world of recent years.

Torie Bosch, in a thought-provoking Slate article entitled First, Eat All the Lawyers, arguing that the boom in zombie-related entertainment reflects, and is fueled by, the economic anxieties of white-collar workers.

Clarence Thomas set the table for the tea party by making originalism fashionable again.

Berkeley Law professor John Yoo, in an interesting Wall Street Journal piece discussing how his former boss, Justice Clarence Thomas, has defended the Constitution and embraced originalism during his twenty years on the high court.

Newt Gingrich

Congress can say, “All right, in the future, the Ninth Circuit can meet, but it will have no clerks. By the way, we aren’t going to pay the electric bill for two years. And since you seem to be rendering justice in the dark, you don’t seem to need your law library, either.”

Newt Gingrich, one of the Republican candidates hoping to take on Obama in Election 2012, suggesting a possible avenue that Congress could use to rein in the “pox on the western part of our country” otherwise known as the Ninth Circuit.

My court has, by my lights, made many mistakes of law during its distinguished two centuries of existence. But it has made very few mistakes of political judgment, of estimating how far … it could stretch beyond the text of the constitution without provoking overwhelming public criticism and resistance.

Dred Scott was one mistake of that sort. Roe v. Wade was another … And Kelo, I think, was a third.

– Justice Antonin Scalia of the United States Supreme Court, commenting on several cases in which he believed SCOTUS had made mistakes of political judgment. His speech was given at the Chicago-Kent College of Law (which, as you may recall, is facing a potential class action suit over its post-graduate employment data).

Deborah Rhode

I don’t wear makeup, nor do I wish to spend 20 minutes applying it.

Deborah Rhode, professor at Stanford Law School and author of The Beauty Bias: The Injustice of Appearance in Life and Law (affiliate link), commenting on the results of a recent study funded by Procter & Gamble, which concluded that women who wore makeup were considered more competent.

One of the interesting concepts in Professor Rosenbaum’s book (affiliate link) is that the law lacks a soul. The law lacks tenderness. The law is objective and cold and inhumane. The law abhors emotion. I don’t think that’s true.

Every time I sentence a defendant, there is a lot of emotion. I think there is a lot of humanity in the law.

– Judge Denny Chin (2d Cir.), quoted in an interesting New York Times article focused on his sentencing practices (back when he was an S.D.N.Y. judge).

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