Conor Friedersdorf

Jackson County Court Clerk Sharon Snyder, 70, was a mere nine months from retirement when she was unceremoniously fired for insubordination. Her rebellious act consisted of pointing someone to a publicly available document.

An inmate who was trying, and failing, to file a simple motion was given a successful motion to use as a model. His motion was granted, he was exonerated, and like the aging cop archetype of film — dramatically killed just before his scheduled retirement — Snyder got canned after 34 years of working in the courthouse.

Now the justice system is once more desperately trying to spin why it punishes people for being right…

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Court Clerk Helps Free Innocent Man and Gets Fired For Her Effort”

When Berkeley Law professor John Yoo is able to come to the defense of President Obama’s secret legal justification for the assassination of American citizens, it’s time for progressives to pack it up and find a new candidate. Mike Bloomberg? Cory Booker? There are a bunch of other political figures out there who will gladly champion some liberal ideals until it becomes politically expedient for them to sell out the left in exchange for the warm embrace of the military-industrial complex.

Progressives will need to find somebody else because this Obama guy is done as a progressive leader. Many of you have been following the story of Anwar al-Awlaki. He’s the American-born radical cleric who was targeted and killed by a U.S. drone strike in Yemen. Many have questioned Obama’s authority to assassinate an American without due process of the law.

Today’s news is that President Obama did seek and receive legal justification for this strike from the Department of Justice. But you won’t get to see it. That’s because the DOJ issued Obama a secret memo that purportedly explains why Obama is allowed to kill Americans now….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “‘Secret’ Memo of Law Makes Obama’s DOJ Look Like John McCain Won The 2008 Election”

* Wow — and OW. There is actually a body of case law about “broken penises.” [Legal Satyricon]

* Remember the claim of witness coaching through footsies? It’s going to an evidentiary hearing. [South Florida Lawyers]

* Conor Friedersdorf of The Atlantic responds to Elie’s critical commentary on Friedersdorf’s takedown of entitled attorneys. [The Daily Dish / The Atlantic]

* Eddie Huang, lawyer turned (successful) restaurateur — New Yorkers, check out his BaoHaus, which Kash and I adore — appears to have won the race to the courthouse USPTO for the “Chairman Bao” mark. [Eater; Fresh Off the Boat]

* This headline needs a correction — add “Since 1865.” [Huffington Post]

* Cutesy names for LLCs show that the bar for humor among lawyers is low (and we’re grateful for that every day). [New York Times]

* Gail Koff — the Skadden Arps alumna who co-founded Jacoby & Meyers, the personal-injury firm that became (in)famous for its television ads — R.I.P. [Am Law Daily]

* Seven lessons from a post-traffic stop conviction. [Underdog]


Earlier this week, Conor Friedersdorf, writing for The Atlantic, poured a big bottle of haterade all over the legal profession. More specifically, he criticized the way “Ivy League” lawyers are recruited, and the “palpable sense of entitlement” they exhibit even when they don’t take Biglaw bucks and instead work for the government. Here’s the set up:

The details of how elite law and business consulting firms recruit astonish me every time I hear them. Even getting an interview often requires attending an Ivy League professional school or a very few top tier equivalents. Folks who succeed in that round are invited to spend a summer working at the firm, the most sane aspect of the process.

But subsequently, they participate in sell events where they’re plied with food and alcohol in the most lavish settings imaginable: five star resort hotels, fine cigar bars, the priciest restaurants.

And here’s the money shot, one that is careening around the legal blogosphere like Billy Joel trying to get back from the Hamptons before the hurricane hits:

Though it isn’t defensible, it is unsurprising that a lot of people who eschew offers to work at these firms, favoring public sector work instead, imagine that they are making an enormous personal sacrifice by taking government work. The palpable sense of entitlement some of these public sector folks exude is owed partly to how few of “our best and brightest” do eschew the big firm route (due partly to increasing debt levels among today’s graduates, no doubt).

Really? You want to do this now? You want to talk smack about the people on the bottom rung of this totem pole, while willfully ignoring the clients, partners, law schools, and state governments that generate huge sums of wealth off the backs of the palpably entitled?

Fine. Let me take off my glasses, and we’ll step outside…

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “The World Hates Lawyers: Mainstream Media Manages to Criticize Biglaw Summers AND Public Sector Lawyers in the Same Breath”