Guns / Firearms

Zhang Ziyi

* I don’t fully understand this story, but it involves the beautiful and deadly Zhang Ziyi and a SLAPP suit. [Techdirt]

* I’m interested in who Andrew Cuomo appoints to the New York Court of Appeals, just because I’m interested in how Cuomo picks judges. You know, just because 2016-2020 could be an interesting time when it comes to shifting the balance of power on the Supreme Court. [WiseLaw NY]

* A Holland & Knight partner is leaving to start teaching an “Indigent Defense” class at Georgetown. I’m not sure who is teaching the companion class: “Blood From A Rock: How To Get Fees Out Of Indigent Clients.” [Legal Blog Watch]

* I swear I was absent the day they explained that the NRA is the fifth branch of government in civics class. [PrawfsBlawg]

* Mmm… negative liberty. [Josh Blackman's Blog]

* This seems like a good time to say that I watch This Week with George Stephanopoulos instead of Meet the Press. But I really think that DCPD has better things to do than investigate David Gregory’s ammo clip prop. [Slate]

* Justice Sonia Sotomayor just ruined Hobby Lobby’s new year by refusing to block the Affordable Care Act’s contraceptives mandate. All of the members of the company’s legal team will have to scrapbook and crochet for hours to get over this loss. [Reuters]

* Harvard Law graduate Barack Obama is being feted as CNN’s “Most Intriguing Person of 2012,” but he’s currently trailing in fourth place in the most important year-end poll of all: Above the Law’s Lawyer of the Year competition. Get out there and vote! [CNN]

* Federal district court judges aren’t being confirmed as quickly as they once were, and it’s partly because our president isn’t submitting nominees as quickly as those who came before him. [WSJ Law Blog (sub. req.)]

* But even if the president nominated judges more quickly, he’d continue to face harsh opposition from the NRA, which matters because the gun group has an entire party in its pocket. [Opinionator / New York Times]

* A legal problem and a journalism problem wrapped up in a little pretty bow: David Gregory of NBC’s “Meet the Press” is being investigated for displaying an alleged 30-round magazine on the air. [Washington Post]

* One of New York’s most prestigious private schools agreed to settle the sex abuse suit brought against it by former students. Simpson Thacher partner Phil Culhane must be doing a victory dance. [New York Daily News]

* You got a fast car, and now this case will pay all our bills. Toyota settled a class action suit over unintended acceleration, and it’s touted as one of the largest product-liability settlements in history. [New York Times]

* Ay dios mio! You know that you’re never going to enjoy another vacation when you catch a hotel employee spreading his seed all over your clothes. But what did you expect? It’s Mexico. [Courthouse News Service]

This is why Indiana Jones never looked for the Fountain of Youth in the Everglades.

How much would you need to be paid to go into the swamp to hunt snakes?

Florida, the national leader in providing reasons why America can’t have nice things, has a bit of a snake problem. For years, Floridians have imported exotic snakes, including giant Burmese Pythons, and then released them into the wild when they got too big for the aquarium.

Seriously, when a massive snake indigenous to an environment half-a-world away becomes too troublesome or dangerous to take care of, many, many people just drop it off on the street.

Unfortunately, these new state citizens take their newfound freedom and pump out over 80 eggs at a time, growing to 17-feet long and eating deer whole.

Congress has proven incapable of forging a solution to the problem, but Florida has got this figured out: Pay rednecks to go after the snakes with machetes!

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Florida: I’m Tired of These Motherf**kin’ Snakes In This Motherf**kin’ State”


* John Kerry has been nominated to be the next Secretary of State. I expect a tough confirmation battle where Republicans openly question his courage and integrity under fire… oh, wait, I’m being told that Republicans were actually just lying to all of us in 2004 by slandering a war hero for political gain. [Yahoo! News]

* The best thing about the NRA’s bizarre press conference was that I got to go on the Huffington Post and use the Konami code in a point. [HuffPost Live]

* Of course, if people could get high, there would be less gun violence. [The Volokh Conspiracy]

* And by the way, nobody plays Bulletstorm, Mortal Kombat and Slaughterhouse are decades old, and nobody has even heard of Kindergarten Killer, but it apparently involves a janitor who takes out a school. Grand Theft Auto is some good stuff though. It’s so good, I’m going to go out and jack some cars, drive into a police cruiser, and then hide out until I lose my wanted level. [Kotaku]

* Richard Epstein on Robert Bork. [Ricochet via How Appealing]

* You know what’s sad? The Mayan calendar was a scientific masterstroke that was turned into a punchline largely by people who are resistant to science. If you’re looking for real end of the world scenarios, the truth is out there. [Science Blogs]

Celebrity opinions are the worst. On this, I think we can all agree. Unlike our pundit class, celebrities have very few advanced degrees and are never held to account for their prognostications. When a talking head on TV or the internet or even books gets something wrong, he’s fired immediately. The marketplace of ideas demands nothing less. Someone more inclined to bad puns would say that as a marketplace, being fired for being wrong is more than laissez… fair.

And so we hate celebrities mouthing off like they are wont to do because they don’t get fired from their jobs when they’re wrong. This is especially true of the sports world, where the famous people not being fired for voicing opinions also represent our favorite teams, like the Chicago Bears. Or even our least favorite teams, like the Syracuse Orangemen.

Syracuse basketball coach Jim Boeheim spoke out about gun control this week because a bunch of children were murdered recently and a bunch of microphones were stuck in his face. The men holding the microphones said, “Hey Jim, let’s talk sports.”

Jim didn’t want to talk sports. Let’s talk sports….

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Sports Law, Spaw, Lorts: Assault Weapons and the 2-3 Zone”

It’s already tomorrow somewhere, and things seem okay.

* I’m happy to have spent this last day on Earth with you. And with professors Paul Campos and Brian Tamanaha telling you how law school is a raw deal. [HuffPost Live]

* Meanwhile, Seton Hall will be offering a tuition “discount” to students based on merit. Which is really just what a lot of law schools have been doing to try to fill seats as people become more aware of the problems with legal education. [National Law Journal]

* One reason my job is better than yours: I get emails with the subject lines like “CockSucker Decision Analysis” all the time. [The Legal Satyricon]

* I didn’t know there were freaking idiots out there who thought that Israel had more lax gun laws than we do. But they don’t. Because Israelis like being safe. [Huffington Post]

* And if you think more lax gun laws in Russia would make the murder rate there go down, you are probably the kind of dumbass who thinks you can look into Putin’s eyes and see his soul. [Atlantic]

* So when former U.S. Olympian Suzy Favor Hamilton admits to it, it’s called “prostitution,” but when we’re doing essentially the same story about Ryan Lochte in 10 years, we’re going to call it “sex addiction” or something. [Chicago Tribune]

* So now, officially, more people have lost their jobs over Benghazi than lost their jobs over 9/11. [New York Times]

* Could we sue the NRA out of existence? [Dissident Voice]

* Nate Silver makes it clear that gun ownership is a great indication of party affiliation. Guess the liberals would get their asses handed to them in a civil war. [Five Thirty Eight / New York Times]

* Should it be harder for a teenager to get his hands on a video game with lots of guns in it, or AN ACTUAL FREAKING GUN? [Huffington Post]

* “Fun” law bloggers interview each other, for fun. [Allison Leotta]

* Wait, McDonald’s restaurants in Europe have waitresses? [Telegraph]

* Former Governor of Florida slams current Governor of Florida while nation wonders why Florida is always such a train wreck. [Blog of the Legal Times]

* Bank robbers hail getaway cab. [Chicago Tribune]

* Look, the quote of the year is Megyn Kelly’s, “Is this just math that you do as a Republican to make yourself feel better?” But here are some other fun ones from 2012. [The Careerist]

[UPDATE: Hm...well it looks like everyone in D.C. (including Feinstein herself yesterday) was wrong. So she's sticking with her Intelligence chair. This assignment now becomes something of a "what might have been" exercise) Query: what changed? Why would Leahy not take Appropriations? Was he worried about turning Judiciary over to the more conservative Feinstein?]

Daniel Inouye, the second longest serving Senator in history, died on Monday. Inouye had represented the state of Hawaii in Congress as either a Representative or Senator since… well, forever. Inouye took office the day Hawaii became a state and never stopped. He was also an undisputed badass who wasted a German machine gun nest by prying a grenade from his own partially severed arm and throwing it at a guy trying to kill him! This was a more impressive response to having your arm severed that I would have.

But with the loss of Inouye, the Senate has to find a new chair for the powerful Appropriations Committee. Since the Democrats run on strict seniority, noted Batman enthusiast Patrick Leahy of Vermont jumped at that plum assignment.

And here’s where this all comes back to the law. By taking the Appropriations gig, Leahy had to forfeit his role as chair of the Judiciary Committee. Enter Dianne Feinstein, who will take over as the shepherd of the country’s legal policy making for the next Congress.

So what will a Feinstein-led committee look like?

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Dianne Feinstein Movin’ On Up”

* Change may be coming soon in light of the Newtown shooting, but any talk about new federal restrictions on guns will hinge on the Supreme Court’s interpretation of the Second Amendment through the lens of the Heller case. [National Law Journal]

* Joel Sanders and the Steves are facing yet another “frivolous” lawsuit over their alleged misconduct while at the helm of the sinking S.S. Dewey, but this time in a multi-million dollar case filed by Aviva Life and Annuity over a 2010 bond offering. [Am Law Daily]

* Always a bridesmaid, never a bride: Pillsbury has had the urge to merge since February, and now the firm may finally get a chance to walk down the aisle with Dickstein Shapiro. [Thomson Reuters News & Insight]

* Income-based repayment is a bastion of hope for law school graduates drowning in student loan debt, but when the tax man commeth, and he will, you’ll quickly find out that the IRS doesn’t have IBR. [New York Times]

* Is the premise of graduating with “zero debt” from a law school that hasn’t been accredited by the ABA something that you should actually consider? Sure, if you don’t mind zero jobs. [U.S. News and World Report]

* Daniel Inouye, Hawaii’s Senate representative for five decades and a GW Law School graduate, RIP. [CNN]

Tim Scott, today’s reminder that I could have my own television show in a snap if I just turned ‘black Republican.’

* We’re getting the first black Senator from the Confederacy since Reconstruction, and it’s going to be Tim Scott. That’s kind of like having Clarence Thomas replace Thurgood Marshall. [The Caucus / New York Times]

* A Newtown gun group has a beef with Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms. A beef whose stupidity shouldn’t need to be highlighted by tragic deaths. [Washington Briefs]

* I’m not sure how mandatory gun insurance helps anything. [Breaking Views]

* Since God stubbornly refuses to use his omnipresent powers to stop bullets, I’d rather use a sensible legal framework to protect my child, not faith in things unseen. [Slate]

* One thing that would keep us all safer would be to just keep guns out of the hands of white males. (I’m kidding, of course. I’m a liberal and I don’t believe in racial profiling.) [Salon]

* The deadline for the Above the Law Holiday Card contest is tonight. Send us your holiday cheer NOW, or you’ll be so freaking sorry. [Above the Law]

* We’ve got a real, pro-gavel court. [Onion]

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