Richard Epstein

You’ve given a lot to your law school. There was that dumpload of tuition, of course. There was the immediate boost you gave their U.S. News Ranking when they got to count you as employed within nine months of graduation. And there’s the fact that you don’t reach through the phone and strangle them when they call asking for even more money every week.

Isn’t it time the law school gave something back? In addition to that J.D. that’s rapidly diminishing in value, I mean.

It’s the holiday season and one law school decided to get into the Christmas spirit and sent its alums an email with the subject line, “A Gift from the Law School.”

No more waiting, let’s tear off the wrapping paper and see what some law school generously gave its alums…

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* I’ve got a feeling “Bart Simpson” isn’t going to get a fair trial from this judge. [Lowering the Bar]

* The Supreme Court strikes a blow for copyright sanity by telling publishers that they can’t go after people reselling books published overseas. Now the only incentives to move your publishing operation overseas are the cents per hour wages and the lax health and safety standards. [Volokh Conspiracy]

* The only way to stop a bad guy with a gun is… the same bad guy with a gun. [Legal Juice]

* Following up yesterday’s link to Professor Richard Epstein’s AMA, Ken White of Popehat exposed himself to the same onslaught. [Reddit]

* About 11 years too late, the NFL rescinded its ridiculous “Tuck Rule,” which was always hard to understand, but basically ruled that an otherwise obvious fumble allowed the player to ditch his actress baby momma and marry a Victoria’s Secret model. [USA Today]

* This guy is VERY specific about what gigs he’s willing to play. And he’s also, apparently, a registered sex offender. [Lawyers, Guns & Money]

* Saudi Arabia may soon end beheadings because they’re running out of swordsmen. Poor Ned Stark… if he’d just held out a little longer. [Lowering the Bar]

* Professor Richard Epstein held an AMA (“Ask Me Anything” if you’re behind on the modern lingo of the Interwebs) on Reddit this morning. Mercifully, “Boxers of Briefs?” wasn’t asked. [Reddit]

* It may have taken awhile for Steubenville, Ohio to get its priorities straight, but Attorney General Mike DeWine is finally saying the right things, “Let me be clear. Threatening a teenage rape victim will not be tolerated. If anyone makes a threat verbally or via the Internet, we will take it seriously, we will find you, and we will arrest you.” [Jezebel]

* Is the legal industry ready to seize the future? [Adam Smith, Esq.]

* If you have any questions you’d like to see addressed by our crack advice team at Pls Hndle Thx, send them to advice@abovethelaw.com. [Above the Law]

* David Bernstein posted this clever video about Passover to the tune of Bohemian Rhapsody over at Volokh Conspiracy. You can watch it after the jump….

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* 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]

Excited about fashion law?

* Good news, everyone! According to Citi’s Managing Partner Confidence Index survey, firm leaders are feeling pessimistic about their business due to an overall lack of confidence in the economy. [Am Law Daily]

* Per the Ninth Circuit, an Idaho statute that essentially criminalizes medication-induced abortions imposes an undue burden on a woman’s ability to terminate her pregnancy. Really? You don’t say. [Bloomberg]

* Kiwi Camara’s circuitous route to SCOTUS: thanks to the Eighth Circuit, Jammie Thomas-Rasset started and ended her journey with $222K damages for copyright infringement. [Thomson Reuters News & Insight]

* Was Barack Obama ever offered a tenured position on the faculty at University of Chicago Law School? Absolutely not, says longtime law professor Richard Epstein — and he was never a “constitutional law professor” either. [Daily Caller]

* “Fashion law is a real career choice,” says Gibson Dunn partner Lois Herzeca. This niche practice area is one of the hottest new trends in the fashion world, and it’s not likely to go out of style any time soon. [Reuters]

* Your clawback suit is a wonderland? John Mayer was named as a defendant in a suit filed by trustees seeking to recover money paid out by Ponzi schemer Darren Berg. [Bankruptcy Beat / Wall Street Journal]

* J. Christopher Stevens, UC Hastings Law grad and U.S. Ambassador to Libya, RIP. [CNN]

Professors Richard Epstein (left) and John Yoo

* Are you still trying to make sense of the conflicting opinions in United States v. Jones, the GPS tracking case recently decided by the Supreme Court? Professor Barry Friedman has this helpful round-up. [New York Times]

* Elsewhere in law professors opining on SCOTUS, what do Professors Richard Epstein and John Yoo predict the Court will do regarding Obamacare? [National Review Online]

* A Spanish CFO, a Finnish tax lawyer, and a moody Hungarian CEO walk into an Amsterdam coffee shop…. [What About Clients?]

* Musical chairs: prosecutor Greg Andres is leaving DOJ for DPW. [DealBook]

* In case you missed this fun Friday story, it got picked up by MSNBC today. [Digital Life / MSNBC]

* Did your law firm give you an iPad? Are you wondering what to do with the darn thing? Here’s an idea, after the jump….

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Professors Richard Epstein and John Yoo

The topic of whether (and how) to reform legal education remains very hot. The latest New York Times story — by David Segal, who isn’t very popular among law school deans right now — has sparked much online commentary.

And it’s not over yet. What do Professors Richard Epstein and John Yoo — two of legal academia’s most colorful characters, rock stars in Federalist Society circles — think of the current state of law schools here in the United States?

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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.)

Professors Richard Epstein and John Yoo

* Over the weekend, while I was at the gym, I listened to this engaging and entertaining podcast, with Professors Richard Epstein and John Yoo. They discuss Libya, Obamacare, and — perhaps most interesting for ATL readers — the U.S. News law school rankings (around the 13-minute mark). [Ricochet (subscription); accessible for free for ATL readers over here (mp3)]

* Speaking of law professors and Libya, my friend and former co-clerk, Professor William Birdthistle, is writing an interesting series of posts about his childhood in that now war-torn land. The first appears here. [The Conglomerate]

* Joining the ranks of law professors: former Supreme Court shortlister Larry Thompson, who’s retiring as general counsel of PepsiCo and entering legal academia. [Corporate Counsel]

* Hey Raj Rajaratnam, look on the bright side: at least you’re not Barry Bonds. [Dealbreaker]

* A close and critical look at the PayScale salary data used by Forbes in its recent analysis of law school graduate salaries (as well as its ranking of “best law schools for getting rich”). [Constitutional Daily]

Ken Kratz wins 'The Prize' of no criminal charges.

* A post-mortem for Yoss LLP (formerly known as Adorno & Yoss), the once high-flying Florida law firm. [Daily Business Review (registration) via WSJ Law Blog]

* Former Wisconsin D.A. Ken Kratz, of “I am the prize” fame, won’t face criminal charges. [Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel]

* Good news for same-sex, bi-national married couples confronting immigration issues. [Poliglot / Metro Weekly]

* Adrian Dayton asks: Are referrals still more important than law blogs for developing business? [Marketing Strategy and the Law]

* Blawg Review #304 has a timely theme — “Spooked by Nukes” — as well as some cool photography. [Declarations and Exclusions via Blawg Review]

Unfortunately, her reasoning has matters exactly backwards. She defers to government officials who regulate private conduct, but attacks those who run government facilities. That basic mindset shows bad intellectual judgment which will lead to a decline in economic and social fortunes that no amount of compassion can cure.

— Professor Richard Epstein, in a piece on Ricochet.com entitled Sonia Sotomayor’s Misplaced “Humanity”.

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