Monthly Archives: December 2009

Change Blindness

Apparently, I'm not the only person on the planet oblivious to much of what goes on around him:

Found via Boing Boing.

Posted in Science/Medicine | 8 Comments

Making Last Minute Donations?

If you are thinking of making last-minute 2009 charitable donations, may I commend to you the following great organizations:

Posted in Personal | 4 Comments

Things That Make Law Practice Fun

It must be really fun to start a stiff legal letter on the subject of whether it is libel to ask if a model missing part of a hip might possibly have been photoshopped with the words, “We are counsel for Happy Mutants, LLC…”.

Good letter, by the way. More on the topic of photoshopping models at Demi Moore's lawyers threaten Boing Boing over photo analysis blog post.

Posted in Law: Practice | Leave a comment

Cool Stuff in the Pipeline

Prof. Ed Lazowska's highly plausible Exponentials R Us: Seven Computer Science Game-Changers from the 2000's, and Seven More to Come.

Posted in Sufficiently Advanced Technology | Leave a comment

I Predict this Bill Will Be Really Popular

Bill would lower volume of loud TV commercials.

Do commercials get louder in recessions? In any case, while there are undoubtedly bigger fish for Congress to fry, this is a good idea for those not fast-forwarding on a DVR.

Posted in Law: Everything Else | 2 Comments

Nation Mag Claims ICE has Network of Secret Detention Faciilities — in the USA

In America's Secret ICE Castles, the Nation magazine claims that our immigration police has 186 secret detention facilities scattered around the country.

Among the more hair-raising allegations:

  • A year ago, a top ICE official boasted, “If you don't have enough evidence to charge someone criminally but you think he's illegal, we can make him disappear.”
  • The 186 are mostly unmarked, and locals don't know about them.
  • People sent to these offices are kept off ICE's registry system so that people looking for them cannot find them.
  • Although ICE is not supposed to incarcerate US citizens, it has; they (like the immigrants ICE processes) are denied access to counsel.
  • At least one US citizen was deported as a result of this system.
  • One purpose of the system is to make it more difficult for lawyers to find prisoners before they are deported.

Much of the info concerns activities of the Bush admin; some of it clearly is still happening. The article is maddeningly unclear about how many.

Glenn Beck got a lot of ink a while back for claiming that Obama planned to build a network of secret detention centers in the US in order to lock up Republicans. Who knew that they already existed and were used to deny process of law to suspected undocumented foreigners? Add these to the secret camps in Afghanistan, Lithuania and elsewhere.

Posted in Civil Liberties | 9 Comments

Bah Humbug

papers.jpgI am celebrating the holiday season in the traditional manner for legal academics: grading exams.

And my oh my there are a lot of them this year.

I had thought originally I would tie myself to the mast of public humiliation by posting daily updates about my progress, thinking this would give me an incentive not to slack off, but that plan ran into two snags.

First, it seems that a few people haven't taken the exam yet, for medical reasons. Since I didn't tell the class in advance how many questions were on the exam, and I grade question-by-question rather than an exam at a time, there's too much risk that someone might figure out the number of questions from my postings, and that might somehow be seen as unfair by someone.

Second, the numbers are too humiliating.

Happy holidays.

Posted in Law School | Leave a comment