Symposium: Crosses and constitutional clarity

Lindsay See is the solicitor general of West Virginia, which led a group of 27 other states and the governor of Kentucky in a cert-stage amicus brief in support of the petitioners in The American Legion v. American Humanist Association. No case is ever a lock for Supreme Court review, but the odds were always in favor of the consolidated cases in The American Legion v. American Humanist Association and Maryland-National Capital Park & Planning Commission v. American Humanist Association. The U.S...
Tags: Europe, New York, Featured, Supreme Court, Law, Kentucky, West Virginia, United States, Hawaii, Normandy, Pearl Harbor, Lemon, American Legion, Arlington National Cemetery, Perry, Galloway

Podcast: Adversaries over Austin police-union contract sit down; when is it okay for courts to electrocute mentally ill defendants?; pythons as stocking stuffers?; and other stories

When is it okay for a judge to electrocute a mentally ill defendant?What leverage did a Texas civil rights activist say enabled Austin advocates to force reforms into the city's police-union contract?How many pet pythons are too many, and are they appropriate to give at Christmas as stocking stuffers?These and other questions are answered on this month's episode of the Reasonably Suspicious podcast. As always, you can subscribe on iTunes, Google Play, or SoundCloud, or listen to it here:Here's ...
Tags: Texas, Law, Austin, Chris Perkins, James Calvert, Gritsforbreakfast, Chas Moore, Ron DeLord, Austin Justice Coalition, Interview Police

24 Holiday Steals That Gift Like Luxe Home Goods

The major seasonal sales may have come to a close, but our holiday bargain hunt isn't over yet — especially where gifting's concerned. Instead of paying full price on last-minute present purchases, we're going to save some extra cash by shopping the best slashed-price finds. And here's your Paperless Post to join us.Ahead we're outlining our hit-list of 20 buys from across the web that shop like a stylish steal and gift like a luxe home good. Whether you're shopping for a coworker, in-law, S.O....
Tags: Nordstrom, Fashion, Music, California, Georgia, Society, Pakistan, Brazil, Lulu, Anthropologie, Fitz, Zwilling, MoMA Store, Hokusai, Kanagawa, Henckels

Self-Represented Litigants in the Courts: How They Are Shaping the Jurisprudence

What happens to a system of expert legal adjudication when in some courts, up to three in four litigants are advocating for themselves without the assistance of counsel? The influx of self-represented litigants (SRLs) into the family, civil and appellate courts (family: 50% across the country, up to 80% in some urban courts; civil between 30-50%; appellate around 30%) is transforming the justice system. And not, as many would say, in a good way. Judges struggle to find a balance between appropri...
Tags: Supreme Court, Law, Alberta, Young, Rogers, Thompson, Gray, Clark, Supreme Court of Canada, Cartwright, Johns, Cassidy, John Cartwright, Justice Issues, SRL, SCR

Friday round-up

Amy Howe reports for this blog, in a post that first appeared at Howe on the Court, that the federal government yesterday asked the Supreme Court to allow it to enforce the Trump administration’s ban on service in the military by transgender people while its appeals of adverse decisions in three cases play out in the lower courts. At CNN, Ariane de Vogue and Devan Cole report that “[t]he administration already has a pending request for the Supreme Court to bypass the lower courts and take up a c...
Tags: Supreme Court, Law, Court, America, Bloomberg, Department Of Justice, Wall Street Journal, Economist, Trump, Round-up, Thomas, John Roberts, Josh Blackman, Howe, Steven Mazie, Clarence Thomas

Petitions of the week

This week we highlight petitions pending before the Supreme Court that address, among other things, the applicability of the “commercial activity” exception to sovereign immunity in the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act to certain suits; whether the establishment clause precludes courts from considering relevant, admissible secular evidence in ordinary trust and property disputes because the litigants are religious parties; and the jurisdiction of federal courts pursuant to Section 301(a) of the ...
Tags: Supreme Court, Law, Congregation Shearith Israel, Cases in the Pipeline, Congregation Jeshuat Israel, Nu Image Inc, Petersen Energia Inversora, Argentine Republic

How to Love Hard People at Christmas

The annual run-up to Christmas crashes with waves of “joy” at every turn. Society balks at giving God credit for such joy, but has few qualms sending out generic positive vibes and wishes. Christians too celebrate joy at Christmas, but with a world of difference from the world. Our joy comes as part and parcel of a distinctly Christian way of seeing everything — revealed by the God who is, and who made us, and who designed our rescue. We sing “Joy to the World,” and open to the Christmas st...
Tags: Religion, Society, Jesus, Christ, Matthew, Corinthians, Jesus Christ, PAUL, Luke, Christ Jesus, Matthew 2:10 Joy

Symposium: Cross purposes — Why a Christian symbol can’t memorialize all war dead

Richard B. Katskee is Legal Director at Americans United for Separation of Church and State. Symbols have power. They communicate complex ideas, often more effectively and more forcefully than mere words. They are remembered for decades or even centuries. They speak to the heart, not just the head. And what is true for symbols generally is doubly so for religious ones: They convey at a glance millennia of shared history, collective aspirations and triumphs to those who hold them dear. To Christi...
Tags: Featured, Supreme Court, Law, Pope Francis, Jesus, Christian, Rhode Island, American Legion, U S Court of Appeals, Cross, Sandra Day O'Connor, O'Connor, Bladensburg, Roger Williams, 10th Circuit, Christian Cross

Thursday Thinkpiece: Competition Enforcement and Litigation in Canada

Periodically on Thursdays, we present a significant excerpt, usually from a recently published book or journal article. In every case the proper permissions have been obtained. If you are a publisher who would like to participate in this feature, please let us know via the site’s contact form. Competition Enforcement and Litigation in Canada Author: Antonio Di Domenico Foreword: John Pecman, Commissioner of Competition (2013-2018) ISBN: 978-1-55239-643-8 Publisher: Emond Publishing Page Count: 1...
Tags: Law, Canada, RFP, Bureau, Thursday Thinkpiece, Durward, Dowdall, Emond Publishing Page Count, John Pecman, Competition Enforcement and Litigation, Antonio Di Domenico Foreword, Al Nasher, D Penalty According

5 Lessons on What It Takes to Build a Successful Law Firm

One important lesson you have probably learned by now if you’ve been practicing law for any period of time is that knowing the law is very different from learning how to run a successful law firm. There are lessons that only experience can teach us; my experience of helping more than 18,000 attorneys learn how to build a lifestyle law firm — one that enables to do what you want, when you want — has revealed these 5 key lessons: Exceptional client service is a competitive advantage. Exceptional...
Tags: Law

Federal Circuit Refuses to Split Hairs over Level of Enhanced Damages

by Dennis Crouch Stryker Corp. v. Zimmer, Inc. (Fed. Cir. 2018) In a R.36 judgment-without-opinion, the Federal Circuit has affirmed Stryker’s $250 million willful-infringement verdict against Zimmer.  In the case, the jury found the asserted claims valid and infringed and awarded $70+ million in compensatory damages.  The jury also found that the infringement was willful. After receiving the jury verdict, W.D. Mich Judge Jonker awarded treble damages for the willful behavior — “Given the onesi...
Tags: Supreme Court, Law, Court, Stryker, Patent, Zimmer, District Court, Federal Circuit, Prost, Stryker Corp, Dennis Crouch, Zimmer Inc, Jonker, Federal Circuit Refuses to Split Hairs, Zimmer Inc Fed

Designing Rules of Procedure for the Arbitration of Family Law Disputes

In Canada, the available sets of arbitration rules are designed for corporate-commercial disputes and general civil disputes. None are designed for family law disputes, which is especially problematic in jurisdictions like British Columbia, where the Arbitration Act specifies the rules that will be used absent the parties’ agreement to the contrary. Those rules, by the way, are the domestic rules of the BC International Commercial Arbitration Centre, which are hardly ideal for family law dispute...
Tags: Law, Canada, Columbia, Practice Of Law, BC International Commercial Arbitration Centre

Empirical SCOTUS: The heightened importance of the Federal Circuit

This term, the Supreme Court will hear argument in its 100th case decided below by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. The Supreme Court’s recent grant of Kisor v. Wilkie also marks the fourth case granted from the Federal Circuit this term. This is by no means a small fraction of the Supreme Court’s total caseload. In terms of federal courts of appeals, the Supreme Court has only granted more cases this term from the U.S. Courts of Appeals for the 2nd, 6th, 9th and 11th Circuits....
Tags: Supreme Court, Law, United States, Thomas, Antonin Scalia, Newman, U S Postal Service, Pauline Newman, U S Court of Appeals, Stephen Breyer, Mayer, Clarence Thomas, Alan Lourie, Federal Circuit, David Souter, Teva Pharmaceuticals USA Inc

Government returns to Supreme Court on military transgender ban

Last month the Trump administration asked the justices to allow it to bypass the courts of appeals and immediately take up three cases (here, here and here) challenging the government’s ban on service in the military by most transgender individuals. Today the administration was back at the Supreme Court, giving the government a back-up option: If the justices don’t want to bypass the courts of appeals, they should at least allow the government to enforce the ban while the appeals play out. The a...
Tags: Featured, Supreme Court, Law, California, Washington, District Of Columbia, Donald Trump, Francisco, Trump, John Roberts, Howe, Elena Kagan, What's Happening Now, Noel Francisco, James Mattis

Thursday round-up

Briefly: At CNBC, Tucker Higgins reports that “Justice Brett Kavanaugh has only been on the bench for two months, but a controversial decision announced this week has abortion opponents starting to worry that he may not be the ally on the high court that they expected.” Lyle Denniston reports at Constitution Daily that “[a] group of Maryland Republican voters, claiming that they were penalized for supporting their party’s candidates in the polling booth, asked the Supreme Court on Tuesday to ma...
Tags: Apple, Florida, Maryland, Supreme Court, Law, Montana, America, West Virginia, Pepper, United States, North Carolina, Cnbc, Round-up, Lyle Denniston, Greenwire, Gamble

Evisort’s New Document Analyzer Offers Out-of-the-Box AI to Mine All A Company’s Contracts

Evisort might just be the hottest legal tech and AI company you’ve never heard of.  Born out of Harvard Law School, MIT and the Harvard Innovation Lab; funded by an investment firm backed by Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, Jeff Bezos and other Silicon Valley luminaries; recently profiled in a Columbia Business School case study on entrepreneurship; and its three founders named to Forbes 30 Under 30, it’s safe to say this is a company worth watching. Today, the company is introducing its flagship pr...
Tags: Microsoft, Law, Uncategorized, Silicon Valley, OCR, Forbes, Harvard Innovation Lab, Harvard Law School, Ting, Harvard Law, Columbia Business School, Village Global, Bill Gates Mark Zuckerberg Jeff Bezos, Amity Ventures, Evisort, Mine All A Company

ALM attempting to stop small UK conference from using the phrases “legal tech” and “legaltech”

Talk about shooting yourself in the foot when your legal publishing company is already struggling in the eyes of a lot of folks. ALM is attempting to stop a couple young legal tech entrepreneurs, one a lawyer and one a technologist, in Sheffield, England from using the term or phrase “LegalTech” in the title of their small legal tech conference, LegalTech Conference North, which was held for the first time last month.  As reported by Dan Bindman of Legal Futures, conference coordinators,...
Tags: Publishing, UK, Technology, London, Law, US, Sheffield, Seattle, Northern England, Alm, Companies House, Harding, Pennington, Northern UK, Dan Bindman, Bindman

Why We Can’t Ban Legal Advertising

Whenever I see billboard or TV advertising for law firms, I worry. I don’t worry about the “dignity” of the legal profession; I worry about the people at whom these ads are targeted. Choosing the best possible firm can make a major difference in the long-term happiness and financial security of a person with a serious personal plight legal need (e.g. a personal injury, a divorce, or a criminal charge). Mass media ads almost never provide any useful information that would help someone in this pos...
Tags: Law, Legal Ethics, Ontario, Malcolm Mercer, People Decide Advertising

Why women make businesses more profitable

While the workplace is slowly diversifying, some industries have been slow to change.A growing body of research is uncovering that workplaces with greater diversity actual perform better. One of the clearest examples of this effect is in venture capitalism, where nearly all venture capitalists are white, male, Harvard graduates.When VC firms hire more women, their effectiveness and profitability explodes. None One of the big questions that any society needs to answer is how open and diverse they...
Tags: Work, Gender, Women, Society, Harvard, Sociology, Innovation, Gender Equality, Women In Business, Forbes, Harvard Business School, Paul Gompers, Gompers, Silpa Kovvali, Kovvali

How to Document Your Personal Possessions in Case of Emergency

In the aftermath of a disaster that destroys your house, it can be all but impossible to think through everything you’ve lost. Fires, floods, hurricanes, damaged roofs—when you’re putting your life back together, you might not be thinking about how to catalogue your drawer of kitchen utensils for the insurance company.Read more...
Tags: Money, Insurance, Emergency, Lifehacks

Why the Cleveland Clinic's $15 minimum wage matters to you

Earlier this week, the Cleveland Clinic committed, by January 2020, to raise the minimum wage for its employees to $15 an hour. According to its CEO, Dr. Tom Mihaljevic, its all about making sure employees feel respected and valued … and attracting and retaining the best employees. As the largest employer in Northeast Ohio and the second largest employer in the state of Ohio, Cleveland Clinic has a responsibility to lead the way and help shape the future of health care and the health care wor...
Tags: Law, Northeast Ohio, Cleveland Clinic, Jon Hyman, Verne Ho, Tom Mihaljevic, Ohio Cleveland Clinic, Amazon Walmart Target Disney Parks McDonald

Symposium: Three establishment clause paths

Luke Goodrich is Vice President and Senior Counsel at The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, which filed a cert-stage amicus brief in support of the petitioners in The American Legion v. American Humanist Association. The most interesting thing about the Maryland Peace Cross case won’t be who wins. (The Supreme Court will almost certainly uphold the cross.) The interesting part will be which path the court takes to get there. There are three main possibilities: the “Lemon test,” a historical app...
Tags: New York, Featured, Maryland, Supreme Court, Greece, Law, Court, Lemon, Great Britain, American Legion, Perry, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Galloway, Larkin, Watkins, Engel

Evisort’s New Document Analyzer Offers Out-of-the-Box AI to Mine All A Company’s Contracts

Evisort might just be the hottest legal tech and AI company you’ve never heard of.  Born out of Harvard Law School, MIT and the Harvard Innovation Lab; funded by an investment firm backed by Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, Jeff Bezos and other Silicon Valley luminaries; recently profiled in a Columbia Business School case study on entrepreneurship; and its three founders named to Forbes 30 Under 30, it’s safe to say this is a company worth watching. Today, the company is introducing its flagship pr...
Tags: Microsoft, Law, Uncategorized, Silicon Valley, OCR, Forbes, Harvard Innovation Lab, Harvard Law School, Ting, Harvard Law, Bob Ambrogi, Columbia Business School, Village Global, Bill Gates Mark Zuckerberg Jeff Bezos, Amity Ventures, Evisort

Judge: First Amendment protects recording cops and officials performing public duties

“A federal court judge Monday ruled a Massachusetts General Law prohibiting the secret audio recording of police or government officials is unconstitutional. …In the 44-page decision [Judge Patti] Saris declared that ‘secret audio recording of government officials, including law enforcement officials, performing their duties in public is protected by the First Amendment, subject only to reasonable time, place and manner restrictions.'” [Noah Bombard, MassLive] Tags: First Amendment, Massach...
Tags: Law, Police, Massachusetts, Uncategorized, First Amendment, Movies Film And Videos, Patti -RSB- Saris, Noah Bombard MassLive

Why the U.S. is an anomaly among democracies

From the time of the ancient Greeks, political philosophers believed the only way to have diversity in a society was for it to be an empire or a dictatorship. They thought homogeneity was the core of democracy: one ethnic group, one racial group, and especially one religion. Then America broke that mold in 1787.Eboo Patel cites historical examples of how Benjamin Franklin donated funds to different religious communities and built a pulpit for the Grand Mufti of Constantinople to preach Islam, i...
Tags: Politics, Democracy, Government, Religion, America, Society, History, United States, Islam, Innovation, Faith, Atheism, Benjamin Franklin, George Washington, Eboo Patel, Charles Koch Foundation

Pilot Survives After Crashing Plane Into the Ocean Near Hawaii, the Military Says

A spokesperson said it was a military-affiliated plane, but it may be civilian
Tags: News, Uncategorized, Military, Overnight, Onetime, Ocean Near Hawaii

Six former governors urge outgoing California Gov Jerry Brown to commute 740 death sentences

This new opinion piece in the New York Times is authored by six former governors and is headlined " Jerry Brown Has the Power to Save 740 Lives. He Should Use It."  Th2 headline is itself a bit factually misleading because none of the persons on California's death row seem at risk of being executed anytime soon.  There has not been a single execution in California in more than a dozen years, and the next Governor seems unlikely to be eager to start up the state's machinery of death anytime soon....
Tags: Maryland, Law, California, Washington, Pennsylvania, United States, New York Times, Connecticut, New Jersey, New Mexico, Jerry Brown, Illinois, Gavin Newsom, Martin O'malley, Brown, Jay Inslee

"What Is ‘Life-Affirming’ Coral, Pantone’s Color of the Year?"

If that's your question, the answer is here (at Smithsonian).I'm surprised they picked an orange — because, you know... orange man bad.But Trump isn't coral... and he isn't life-affirming... is he?!From Smithsonian:Living Coral (also known by its less glamorous name of Pantone 16-1546) is a “reaction to the onslaught of digital technology and social media increasingly embedding into daily life,” the company said. In a time when the internet is often a despairingly hostile space, and human connec...
Tags: Law, Smithsonian, Orange, Pantone, Trump, Ann Althouse, Living Coral, Pantone Living Coral

Details on further carve-outs and amendments to FIRST STEP Act sought by Senators Tom Cotton and John Kennedy

I have been able to get copies of proposed FIRST STEP Act amendments that Senator Tom Cotton and Senator John Kennedy will seek votes on next week.  Specifically, I have posted for downloading below a one-page explanation, the text of the proposed amendments, and a letter of support from the National Association of Police Organizations.  Here is key text from the one-pager (with bolding in the original): AMENDMENT 1: Excluding serious felons from early release to prerelease custody and supervis...
Tags: Law, Senate, Ted Cruz, Mitch McConnell, Kennedy, Usc, Tom Cotton, John Kennedy, Napo, Bureau of Prisons, Douglas A Berman, Prez Trump, CVRA, National Association of Police Organizations Here

Something To Read While Above The Law Parties — See Also

Tonight's Our Holiday Party: Will you be there? Biglaw Rankings: Who's tops in client service? Yup, The Federal Government Wants Lawyers To Work For Free: No, this is not new. Rules Are There Are No Rules: A look at the latest in rulemaking from NALP. Trouble With Scare Quotes: Paul Weiss and their "diversity" issue.
Tags: Law, Paul Weiss, NALP, See Also

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