To Kill a Mockingbird
As we all bask in the wonderment of this occasion, ATL presents the top attorneys that you should remember to honor on this day for their admirable contributions and enduring legacy.
Culture columnist Harry Graff wonders: why is this decade so bereft of quality legal films?
Most everyone knows what an elevator speech is: it’s a short, pithy, memorable description of a company’s services. Lawyers have always built their reputations on their expertise, such that the creation of an elevator pitch should be one of the easiest things for an attorney to do; however, many lawyers still stumble over the basic question: “What do you do?”
* “Bueller… Bueller…” Richard Hsu chats with Ben Stein. [Hsu Untied]
* NFL deflates Tom Brady’s hopes of playing a full season. [Redline]
* Can a public defender really handle 700 cases a year? Spoiler alert: No. [Mother Jones]
* About a third of the seats on the Court of Federal Claims are vacant, and a solitary Senator aims to keep it that way. Why are Republicans against getting citizens tax refunds? Shouldn’t that be their whole schtick? [Constitutional Accountability Center]
* If you’re around August 11, check out “Many Faces of Mediation: An Alternative to Courtroom Drama” at JAMS HQ in New York. [ABA]
* If you’ve been hankering for a podcast covering the U.S. Tax Court, then hanker no further. [U.S. Tax Court Podcast via iTunes]
* A proposal for expanding the U.S. News Diversity Index. [Iowa Law Review via SSRN]
* The continuing tribute to commenter Partner Emeritus rolls on. This time delving into my favorite Baby Boomer trope: lame excuses for skipping out on Vietnam. [What About Clients?]
* Talmage will be moderating a panel at the ABA Annual Meeting featuring Judge Posner, William Landay, and Laura Caldwell. The panel will also include our own David Lat, discussing Supreme Ambitions (affiliate link). [Supreme Ambitions]
Arts columnist Harry Graff don’t really care how Go Set a Watchman was released; he merely cares that it is a subpar novel, one that he probably won’t read again.
* A positive review of Go Set a Watchman (affiliate link) from Professor Brophy. I haven’t read it, but it strikes me as a weird choice to make Doctor Manhattan a racist in this one. [The Faculty Lounge]
* Standard gun nut operating procedure is to stay quiet after a mass shooting, but this guy decided to explain why Dylann Roof didn’t take advantage of a “loophole” to avoid a background check. And he’s right. “Loophole” suggests there was a drafting mistake as opposed to an intentional, cynical effort to gut the one gun regulation pretty much everybody agrees on. [National Review]
* Everyone knows that the federal government is comprised of three equal branches. But, why do you think that? The Constitution certainly never says that. An interesting question. [Concurring Opinions]
* Arts students work harder than law students. Let that sink in. [Legal Cheek]
* The Economist just can’t help itself from writing contrarian reviews. They’re like hipsters if hipsters were old-timey Tories with handlebar mustaches and… actually, wait, is The Economist run by hipsters? [Lawyers, Guns & Money]
* The Welsh government responded to an official inquiry in Klingon. Which, admittedly, is easier to understand than Welsh. [Lowering the Bar]
* Important practice tip when dealing with a new client: check out the last several complaints filed against them and search for a pattern. [What About Clients?]
Why nobody should care if Harper Lee made Atticus Finch racist now.
Is Atticus Finch portrayed as too much of a paragon of moral virtue?
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* The Supreme Court is going to strike down bans on marriage equality folks. And the tea leaves aren’t that hard to read. [Slate]
* Even if the Court proclaims marriage equality the law of the land, discrimination will march on. On that note, can American law schools like Liberty continue to follow Canada’s controversial Trinity Western in functionally barring homosexuality? [Tax Prof Blog]
* Law students f**king love Atticus Finch. Um, you know he lost right? Start looking up to winners, like Dan Fielding or something. [Slate]
* Who else is jumping from the hulk that was once Patton Boggs? [Legal Times (sub. req.)]
* Our old friend George Mason Assistant Dean Richard Kelsey, who we last saw Tweeting about black people and the lack of reason, is back explaining that abortion is genocide… because it leads to immigrants coming to America. Or something. [CNS News]
* Meanwhile, there’s a new casebook out covering reproductive rights law that challenges the conventional classification of the subject as a subset of women’s issues. [RH Reality Check]
* Harvard Law 3L, soon-to-be Clifford Chance associate, rapper. [J.KO]
Richard J. Morvillo, co-founder of Morvillo LLP, answers ten questions for the ATL Interrogatories, sponsored by Lateral Link.
* The Zimmerman verdict allows us to sit back and reflect on how bad Atticus Finch really was at his job. [Criminal Defense Blog]
* In case you’d forgotten about the shenanigans at Louisville’s Brandeis School of Law, here’s your update: a former employee has been charged for promising students more scholarships than the school had. Rick Pitino needs to show the law school how to work within scholarship limits. [Courier-Journal]
* State licensing boards are trying to put the kibosh on advice columnists. Next thing you know, they’ll be trying to shut down Dr. Demento. [Lexington Herald-Leader]
* Fun with patents: Monkey Dog Saddle! [Lowering the Bar]
* Transgendered workers are successfully challenging workplace discrimination using the Civil Rights Act. These sound like cases Justice Alito will get right on overturning. [Buzzfeed]
* McDonald’s is trying to show how it provides its employees a living wage. It just requires working a second job for a total of between 62-74 hours. No biggie. [Lawyers, Guns & Money]
* A senior litigation associate at Paul Hastings, Ryan Nier, has decided to participate in something called the Death Race, and it has nothing to do with the drive for partnership. This Death Race is 50-mile mountain endurance/obstacle race that takes somewhere between 24 and 48 straight hours to finish. Only a handful complete the race every year, and Nier is determined to be one of them. From what we’re told, Paul Hastings has been entirely supportive of Nier, which is cool because he’s using it as an opportunity to raise money for charity. But who knows how supportive they’ll be when they realize he won’t have Blackberry access on top of the mountain for 48 hours. For more information about the Death Race, check out the website. [The Death Race]
* Law student golfing across the U.S. So, I take it summer associate gigs are still scarce? [Golf.com]
* “Guess What the Air Force’s Chief of Sexual Assault Prevention Was Just Arrested For…” Hard to top that headline. [Lowering the Bar]
* Harper Lee suing over “To Kill a Mockingbird” (affiliate link), alleging that the son-in-law of her literary agent botched the copyright. *Insert cheap Atticus Finch joke here* [Washington Post]
* Gigi Jordan case gets even uglier with misconduct charges flying around. [Thompson Reuters News & Insight]
* Dr. Phil is suing Gawker alleging that the website posted a video of the pop psychologist’s interview with Manti Te’o, stifling ratings. So Dr. Phil thinks his audience strongly overlaps with Gawker’s. I’m incredulous. [Yahoo! Sports]
* This is why an over-aggressive cease and desist letter can get you into more trouble. Enter the world of the “miniature war-gaming community.” [Popehat]
* A guide to the questions applicants need to be able to answer at OCI. The best? “Describe a situation when you had to think on your feet to extricate yourself from a difficult situation.” This provides insight into how the applicant will deal with virtually every situation that ever comes up in Biglaw. [Ms. JD]
Roger Ebert really didn’t like legal movies all that much.