Bloglikes - Society https://www.bloglikes.com/c/society/archive/2019-02-10 en-US Tue, 28 Jan 2020 14:43:45 +0000 Sat, 06 Apr 2013 00:00:00 +0000 FeedWriter Runaways: Can You be Charged With Harboring a 17-Year-Old Runaway https://www.expertlaw.com/forums/showthread.php?t=241249&goto=newpost My daughter's 17 year old friend wants to move in with us. I won't go in to the details of why, but her circumstances would likely not fall into "abuse" by the state. It is hard to prove emotional abuse. From the research I have read online, it is unlikely the police will require her to return home, but we are concerned about whether we could legally be charged with harboring a runaway. She says she would tell her parents where she was, will give up her car and phone and will continue to go to school. (which we would require if she stayed with us anyway) She is an honor student and very active in sports. She wants to continue going to school and then on to college. We are willing to support her while she is here and help her get into college, but will not be able to fund her college education, but neither can her parents, so she is not concerned about it.]]> Sun, 10 Feb 2019 22:32:59 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Texas Law Juvenile Law Runaways: Harboring a Runaway https://www.expertlaw.com/forums/showthread.php?t=241249&goto=newpost My daughter's 17 year old friend wants to move in with us. I won't go in to the details of why, but her circumstances would likely not fall into "abuse" by the state. It is hard to prove emotional abuse. From the research I have read online, it is unlikely the police will require her to return home, but we are concerned about whether we could legally be charged with harboring a runaway. She says she would tell her parents where she was, will give up her car and phone and will continue to go to school. (which we would require if she stayed with us anyway) She is an honor student and very active in sports. She wants to continue going to school and then on to college. We are willing to support her while she is here and help her get into college, but will not be able to fund her college education, but neither can her parents, so she is not concerned about it.]]> Sun, 10 Feb 2019 22:32:59 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Texas Law Juvenile Law Weekend Range Time http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/captainsjournal/~3/KfUXmMHDOtc/ Spent Saturday with friends and neighbors in the field.  It was nice to bang steel (12″ diameter) at 100 yards and 200 yards with 5.56mm, and nice to hit steel at 340 yards with 6.5 Creedmoor (Ruger Precision).  That Ruger is a nice gun, but heavy as a load of bricks.

It was also nice to bang steel at 100 yards with a Marlin 30-30 lever-gun using iron sights.  And it was especially nice to hit the same steel at 100 yards with my CMMG PSB .45 ACP, using only an EOTech 1X red dot holographic sight.  The gun is very accurate, and the EOTech will reach out to at least 100 yards.  Beyond that I’ll have to practice a little bit of “hold-over” of the dot.

One final comment.  I shot 450 SMC out of the gun on Saturday, and I cannot say that there was any real difference in felt recoil between that and .45 ACP (it’s a good thing to pick up 300 FPS over the .45 ACP, but the cost of the Double Tap 450 SMC ammunition isn’t trivial).

How is your range time going?

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Sun, 10 Feb 2019 22:01:45 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Guns Military Firearms ACP Marlin Creedmoor Ruger Precision That Ruger
Creating the AI in Our Own Image http://www.slaw.ca/2019/02/10/creating-the-ai-in-our-own-image/ Human being, as a self-absorbed species, tend to perceive ourselves as the most superior organism on the planet. The apex predator among apex predators.

This trope is is found throughout our popular culture, and often explains our relationship with other animals and the environment around us. The notion of dominance can even be found in the Bible, with humans being created in the image of the creator, specifically so that they could rule (רְדּוּ֩) over the world (Gen 1:26). In contrast, many Indigenous cultures to North America perceive a more harmonious and interdependent relationship with the others around us.

The notion of dominance may not in fact be correct, and it’s quite possible that bacteria or ants are better contenders for the most superior species. If we define dominance by absolute and complex intelligence though, there are not other true comparators to date. The presence of humans has effectively prevented any true competitors, with other similar species such as Neanderthals and Denisovans being absorbed into our populations. This may change though with the development of artificial intelligence, which may reveal new and unanticipated forms of intelligent expression.

For now, most applications of artificial intelligence are still modelled after human intelligence, largely because users still have the need to understand or control (alternatively, to dominate) the algorithms they create. In contemplating the emerging “relationship” humans may have with algorithms, some cultural precedents from our history may provide some guidance.

In Ashkenazi Jewish mysticism, the notion of an animated being, created by humans through spiritual techniques, exists in various folk traditions. This being, termed a “golem” (גלמ), is capable of moving and following commands of its creator, but cannot speak and does not have a soul. The first mythic human, Adam, was considered a golem until he was given a soul. Though created in a similar physical form or image as a human, a golem was never truly alive, as it failed to have this crucial soul.

This past week, I used the template of the golem and some of its mythology to explore a few ethical dimensions in the development of artificial intelligence at the Thomson Rivers University SLS Conference, in on “Ghosts in the Machine: Artificial Intelligence.”

When the golem of the Jewish ghettos would get out of control, as they sometimes would, its creators were compelled of course to stop it. Tradition has it that a golem was inscribed with the word “truth” (אמת) on its forehead. Deactivating it was accomplished by erasing the first letter in this word, which leaves the word for “dead” (מת).

This reaction is not significantly different than the one adopted towards artificial intelligence. When a chatbot in 2017 started developing its own language to communicate with other bots, its creators decided to terminate it. Though hardly as nefarious as the damage and destruction created by rogue golems, it reveals the cavalier attitude towards the utility that algorithms provide us.

The story of the golem may have inspired other, later stories, such as Mary Shelley’s 1818 Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus, and of course the many films and pop-culture references that emerge from this novel. One of the most common misunderstandings of the Frankenstein prototype is that it is the name of the creation, whereas it is in fact the proper name of the creator. The true monster was arguably Dr. Victor Frankenstein, who dies with regret over his ambition and need to experiment. The ethical dilemmas around artificial intelligence provide similar restraint over drawing foregone conclusions.

One of the most celebrated contemporary ethical dilemmas around artificial intelligence involves self-driving cars, and the utilitarian choices made around the prioritization of preservation of life. The Moral Machine study, with 2.3 million respondents, illustrated considerable geographic variability in the preferences of life preservation. Countries in the Middle East, South Asia, and East Asia, were more likely to preserve life that is senior, even if it meant sacrificing someone who was young. Most of Western Europe and North America exhibited the opposite preference. And South America and France were more likely to preserve female life over male.

The reasons for these preferences are deeply rooted in cultural norms, but also what different societies value. It may be that seniority is prioritized only in very hierarchical societies, and because there is an inherent self-interest in people preserving privileged for the elderly, in hopes of eventually attaining it themselves. Conversely, the emphasis on youth is often explained as valuing the opportunity to gain experiences and contribute to society. Greater scrutiny of preferences though demonstrate some troubling disparities on economic, professional, and even racial grounds. Finally, the preference for preserving female life itself may be predicated on an association of sex with reproductive potential, which is a rather demeaning and overly simplistic reduction of half the world’s population.

If we simply replicate the values shared by societies in the creation of rules for algorithms, we miss out on reflection as to why those rules exist. It’s widely recognized by this point that algorithms are in fact highly prone to biases and prejudices, usually unwittingly adopted through existing patterns found in existing and ongoing data. One of the most significant contributions that lawyers can make in the development of these technologies is apply a critical social justice, human rights, and jurisprudential sense, to help remove some of these unintended effects.

The result may be that in recognizing our own failings and flaws, and attempting to replicate no only our need for robust logical analysis, we will also somehow have to find a way to incorporate entirely illogical sentiments such as empathy and emotion. Mathematical models for this already do exist, but they still require considerable refinement.

Our flaws may be what make us human, but the removal of these same flaws in the artificial replication of humanity may ultimately provide something even better.

 

 

 

 

 

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Sun, 10 Feb 2019 22:00:26 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Technology Law France South America North America Western Europe East Asia Adam Victor Frankenstein Middle East South Asia Mary Shelley Moral Machine
Are Great Deer Rifles Fading Into History? http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/captainsjournal/~3/kmL2iWwkzaA/ Opinion by Rick Windham:

I have picked up several classic rifles at gun shows. They are rifles I read about as I grew up dreaming of big game hunts. They are chambered in calibers that may not be totally forgotten, but they are off the radar of most younger hunters. For example, I was in an antelope camp a couple of years ago and there was a younger hunter (early 30s) in the group. Most of the other rifles in camp were calibers like .243, .308, 7mm Mag, but I had a .264 Winchester Magnum. The guy looked over my rifle and made all the appropriate comments on its looks and feel, but as he handed it back to me he said. “A .264 Win Mag, huh? Never heard of that caliber.”

It caused me to think about the other proven cartridges that may be fading into history. There is nothing wrong with them, it is just that they are not the cartridges hunters read about in today’s gun magazines.

I first thought about the .270 Winchester. Jack O’Conner, one of the most famous gun writers for Outdoor Life Magazine, constantly wrote about the .270 and the hunts he had with it. He made the .270 famous. Ask someone you know who owns/shoots a .270 why they chose this cartridge. I bet a lot of them with mention Jack O’Conner — but he died 41 years ago. A couple of generations of shooters have grown up without O’Conner and his writings and the .270 is fading away.

There are other calibers that are fading into history. Calibers like the Savage .250-3000, the .257 Roberts, 7×57 Mauser, 8×57 Mauser, .35 Whelen and to some extent the .30-06 Springfield. Most of these calibers are just overshadowed by marketing and the hype surrounding newer calibers like the .224 Valkyrie, 6.5 PRC, .338 Federal or the .350 Legend — to name a few.

The .25-06 is another fine cartridge that fits into this discussion and the category of almost forgotten deer rifles. I look for rifles like this for two reasons: I don’t want them to become the has-beens of hunting traditions and because they are not highly sought after, you can find some really good deals.

Read the whole thing.  I have several thoughts in response.

First of all, I really love the .270 Winchester, and I don’t really think it’ll ever go out of style for bolt action rifles.  It’s fast, powerful, and flat-shooting.  It’s also got a fairly stiff kick given that it’s a necked-down 30-06 cartridge.  But given that it isn’t a plinking gun, that’s not really a problem.  It’s readily available just about everywhere.

But it’s a long-action cartridge, so it won’t readily fit into a semi-automatic rifle without re-engineering.  I think part of his objection may be that many of the firearms in use for hunting now are semi-automatic guns and thus use more short-action cartridges.  If he simply prefers long action cartridges, then good.  But if his objection is merely that guys shouldn’t be using semi-automatics for hunting, I disagree and he needs to bring his views in line with current thinking.

Besides, I don’t really think that bolt action rifles are going out of style.  Long range precision shooting is growing as a sport, and a whole host of very nice guns (and new cartridges to go along) have been engineered for that purpose.

But I grok where he’s going with the proliferation of cartridges.  The 6.5 Creedmoor isn’t good enough – we need a 6.5 PRC too.  And the 300 Win Mag isn’t good enough – we need 300 PRC too.  Maybe we do, for very specific applications, but I’ll likely never push my cartridges to that extreme.

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Sun, 10 Feb 2019 21:52:09 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Guns Military Firearms Roberts PRC Mauser Creedmoor Whelen Ammunition Outdoor Life Magazine O'Conner Rick Windham Jack O'Conner
Another Cop Screw-up With Weapons-Mounted Lights http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/captainsjournal/~3/KTuXrGFsWk8/ News from Colorado:

A Denver police officer will be suspended for 10 days without pay for almost shooting a man in the head by accident.

The Denver Post reports Asher Rose will begin his suspension later this month for the Dec. 15, 2017 incident.

The officer joined the department in January 2017 and did not have any previous disciplinary issues.

Investigators say Rose and another officer were responding to a report of a drunk man trying to stop traffic in south Denver. The man ran away and hid under a truck.

According to Rose’s disciplinary letter, the officer accidentally fired his gun as he was turning on his weapon-mounted light.

For the 3648th time, do … not … do … that.  It’s dumb and it violates the rules of gun safety.  If you need illumination, find another way to get it, like carrying a tactical light.

Prior: Gun-Mounted Flashlights Linked To Accidental Shootings

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Sun, 10 Feb 2019 21:38:19 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Guns Colorado Police Military Denver Firearms Rose Denver Post Weapon-Mounted Tactical Lights Asher Rose
Review Of Holosun 507c Pistol Red Dot Sight http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/captainsjournal/~3/kdnCdNv4Z4U/

John appears to like the Holosun, and it’s cheaper than the competitors.

I did a little time with a pistol red dot sight on Saturday for the first time, and reflexively looked for the front post and tried to co-witness it with the dot.  That’s wrong, but breaking that habit will be tough if I get a pistol red dot sight.  I’ll need to spend some time turning training time into muscle memory.

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Sun, 10 Feb 2019 21:30:44 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Guns Military John Firearms Holosun Pistol Red Dot Sights
At the Talking Rat Café... http://althouse.blogspot.com/2019/02/at-talking-rat-cafe.html
... surely you can keep up your end of the conversation.

[Author: noreply@blogger.com (Ann Althouse)]

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Sun, 10 Feb 2019 20:28:32 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Drawing Rats Ann Althouse
Sales Agreements: Purchased a Used Vehicle That Has an Out-of-State Lien https://www.expertlaw.com/forums/showthread.php?t=241248&goto=newpost On october 2nd 2018 i bought a used car from a small dealer/auction lot for 2500 cash. I also paid DMV registration and title fees, hence the dealer can handle that for customers. After 3 months of waiting for my plates and title in the mail i finally get an answer from the dealer that they havent done it yet because their is a lien on the car i bought. So they dont even have the title. If it technically wasnt their car in the first place, was it legal to sell? Mind u the amount that is written on my receipt that i paid for the car is less than what i really paid... Wierd. Also i did a VIN check and their is no reported lien on this vehicle]]> Sun, 10 Feb 2019 20:09:52 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law DMV Cars and Dealerships Lien Bought a Used Car from a Small Dealership in California That Has a Lien in Nv https://www.expertlaw.com/forums/showthread.php?t=241248&goto=newpost On october 2nd 2018 i bought a used car from a small dealer/auction lot for 2500 cash. I also paid DMV registration and title fees, hence the dealer can handle that for customers. After 3 months of waiting for my plates and title in the mail i finally get an answer from the dealer that they havent done it yet because their is a lien on the car i bought. So they dont even have the title. If it technically wasnt their car in the first place, was it legal to sell? Mind u the amount that is written on my receipt that i paid for the car is less than what i really paid... Wierd]]> Sun, 10 Feb 2019 20:09:52 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law California DMV Cars and Dealerships Traffic Accidents: What Are Legal Remedies when Vehicle Crashes into House https://www.expertlaw.com/forums/showthread.php?t=241247&goto=newpost In Anne Arundel county, Maryland, on Monday (1/28/2019) like a would-be terrorist this driver crashes through a chain link fence, through a closed garage door, and into the lower level of my single-family home demolishing the bathroom and plowing through walls, doors, personal property and destroying everything else in his idiot path. He narrowly missed a 5-gallon can of gasoline. The destruction was so severe that the county had placed a sign on the front indicating "Unsafe Building ... Occupancy Prohibited". Nobody was home at the time. However, the driver was taken away in an ambulance.
After watching the video I thought this might have been an intentional act. I was astonished to learn the driver was not charged with anything. The police report indicated that the driver had fallen asleep. Keep in mind this incident was in the middle of the day, clear weather, a straight road, and no toxicology test was given. This driver will kill somebody one day. This video would be showing a head-on collision if the driver's timing was off by one second. I am certain this driver will find himself on the wrong end of a civil suit. Still, I have some questions.
1. It appears that it is lawful in Maryland to use you vehicle to destroy private property if you claim falling asleep. Is that about right?
2. I went to the police station to pick up the police report and was told that I had to pay for it because I was not a victim.
Excuse me? If this does not qualify as a victim what does?]]>
Sun, 10 Feb 2019 19:41:39 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Maryland Law House Accidents and Injuries Anne Arundel County Maryland
Traffic Accidents: What Are Your Legal Remedies when a Vehicle Crashes into Your House https://www.expertlaw.com/forums/showthread.php?t=241247&goto=newpost In Anne Arundel county, Maryland, on Monday (1/28/2019) like a would-be terrorist this driver crashes through a chain link fence, through a closed garage door, and into the lower level of my single-family home demolishing the bathroom and plowing through walls, doors, personal property and destroying everything else in his idiot path. He narrowly missed a 5-gallon can of gasoline. The destruction was so severe that the county had placed a sign on the front indicating "Unsafe Building ... Occupancy Prohibited". Nobody was home at the time. However, the driver was taken away in an ambulance.
After watching the video I thought this might have been an intentional act. I was astonished to learn the driver was not charged with anything. The police report indicated that the driver had fallen asleep. Keep in mind this incident was in the middle of the day, clear weather, a straight road, and no toxicology test was given. This driver will kill somebody one day. This video would be showing a head-on collision if the driver's timing was off by one second. I am certain this driver will find himself on the wrong end of a civil suit. Still, I have some questions.
1. It appears that it is lawful in Maryland to use you vehicle to destroy private property if you claim falling asleep. Is that about right?
2. I went to the police station to pick up the police report and was told that I had to pay for it because I was not a victim.
Excuse me? If this does not qualify as a victim what does?]]>
Sun, 10 Feb 2019 19:41:39 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Maryland Law Accidents and Injuries Anne Arundel County Maryland
Non Sequiturs: 02.10.19 http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/abovethelaw/~3/7y64CzuwN6I/ recent addition to the roster of Volokh Conspirators, assesses some of the attacks leveled against D.C. Circuit nominee Neomi Rao. [Volokh Conspiracy / Reason] * In other nomination news, Thomas Jipping explains why conservatives should temper their excitement over those 44 judicial nominees who just got reported out of the Senate Judiciary Committee. [Bench Memos / National Review] * Michael Dorf's take on Chief Justice John Roberts joining the four liberals on the Supreme Court to put the Louisiana abortion law on hold: the right to an abortion is "not in quite as much immediate danger as one might have thought. And that's not nothing." [Take Care] * Lawyer to the stars Alex Spiro, partner at Quinn Emanuel, talks about how he's approaching the representation of his latest celebrity client, rapper 21 Savage. [Complex] * On the occasion of his 15th blogiversary (congratulations!), Rick Garnett reflects on the past and future of blogging. [Mirror of Justice via PrawfsBlawg] * Jean O'Grady chats with Pablo Arredondo of Casetext about the platform's newest features. [Dewey B Strategic] * And in other legal technology news, congrats to legal AI innovator Luminance on securing another $10 million in funding (reflecting a total valuation for the company of $100 million). [Artificial Lawyer] * Last Thursday, Alabama executed Domineque Hakim Marcelle Ray and did not allow his imam to be present (even though Christian inmates are allowed to have their ministers present at their executions) -- a manifest injustice, according to Stephen Cooper. [Alabama Political Reporter] * In the latest installment of his ongoing series offering advice to trial lawyers, David Berg sets forth an essential rule of cross-examination. [YouTube]]]> Sun, 10 Feb 2019 17:30:35 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Technology Supreme Court Law Scotus Religion Alabama Blogging Death Penalty Abortion Capital punishment Louisiana Litigation Legal Technology Litigators Casetext John Roberts D C Circuit Michael Dorf Alex Spiro Quinn Emanuel Stephen Cooper Non-Sequiturs David Berg Judicial Nominations Judicial Nominees Rick Garnett 21 Savage Neomi Rao Irina Manta Pablo Arredondo Luminance Mirror of Justice Volokh Conspiracy Reason Jean O Grady Thomas Jipping Domineque Hakim Marcelle Ray Volokh Conspirators "When the term Executive Time is used, I am generally working, not relaxing." http://althouse.blogspot.com/2019/02/when-term-executive-time-is-used-i-am.html

The media was able to get my work schedule, something very easy to do, but it should have been reported as a positive, not negative. When the term Executive Time is used, I am generally working, not relaxing. In fact, I probably work more hours than almost any past President.....

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 10, 2019

[Author: noreply@blogger.com (Ann Althouse)]

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Sun, 10 Feb 2019 17:24:45 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Labor Donald J Trump Ann Althouse Trump rhetoric Idleness
The Green New Deal — don't ask if it's practical, it's "aspirational," and people are looking for "dreamers." http://althouse.blogspot.com/2019/02/the-green-new-deal-dont-ask-if-its.html transcript).
The moderator Chuck Todd got the conversation going by reading Trump's tweet:
"I think it is very important for the Democrats to press forward with their Green New Deal. It would be great for the so-called carbon footprint to permanently eliminate all planes, cars, cows, oil, gas, and the military even if no other country would do the same. Brilliant." 
... and asking Kos if this is "a healthy debate" from the point of view of Democrats.
MARKOS MOULITSAS: Yeah, I think this is aspirational. This is actually popular. And if Trump thinks that this is going to hurt us politically, he's absolutely not really paying attention to the pulse of the country. This is aspirational. Like, like you said, it's not a bill. The details would have to be worked out. And this is so ambitious that these details would have to be worked out over decades. This is a broad, aggressive, bold agenda. And it'll take time to implement. But at least it shows people where the Democratic Party is going on the issue of climate change.
A little while later Atkins sounded like she had absorbed the same talking points:
KIMBERLY ATKINS: It's something that people understand and connect to.... And I think that is an issue that moves. And I think the aspirational aspect of this, I actually think it was pretty brilliant to not put in a bunch of details that people can immediately start taking down...
Chuck Todd wondered if Democrats were worried about making themselves "less electable." And:
CHUCK TODD: So, Markos, this, today, I think is a great framing. You had Amy Klobuchar and yesterday, you had Elizabeth Warren. And we -- Elizabeth Warren -- very, I would call it a clarity of purpose. There was no ambiguity. Amy Klobuchar's going to talk about bragging about getting bills signed by President Trump. That’s two different -- I say this, that’s two different -- she's saying, "I'm a get-things-done person. You can dream all you want." How is that going to play out?
MARKOS MOULITSAS: I think we're looking for dreamers at this point. I mean, Trump is going to accuse us of being socialist no matter what. It doesn't matter what the agenda is. He's going to use the same playbook. It didn't work in 2018. It's not going to work in 2020. And so, I think it's important to really think aspirationally, to give people a sense of where the candidate wants to be. "Yes, we can," is actually a very positive messages as opposed to maybe Klobuchar or Sherrod Brown saying, "No, we can't."

[Author: noreply@blogger.com (Ann Althouse)]

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Sun, 10 Feb 2019 16:45:17 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Elizabeth Warren Sarcasm Atkins Environmentalism Amy Klobuchar Kos Trump Democratic Party Chuck Todd Klobuchar Sherrod Brown WBUR Ann Althouse Trump rhetoric Markos Moulitsas Moulitsas Dreaming Markos 2020 Campaign Kimberly Atkins Elizabeth Warren And
CNN's Nina Turner stomps on a Democratic Congresswoman's effort to blame Trump for the problems with the Democratic Party leadership in Virginia. http://althouse.blogspot.com/2019/02/cnns-nina-turner-stomps-on-democratic.html Transcript and video.) Jake Tapper was moderating a panel about the mess in Virginia involving the Governor and the Attorney General, both white men who wore blackface years ago, and the black Lieutenant Governor, whom 2 women have accused of rape. Tapper asked Congresswoman Nanette Diaz Barragan (a woman of Mexican heritage) to confirm that she wouldn't want the 3 men — all Democrats — to resign, given that it would make the Republican speaker of the house of delegate governor.
Diaz Barragan gave a quick "no" and immediately shifted into her own topic, Trump:
No, but we need to think about doing what's right and what's right for Virginians and what's right overall. I mean, the race issue in today's day and age with the president at the helm who has been one of the most divisive presidents and, frankly, racist himself, is a conversation we do need to have. But looking at just the line of order and saying we're not going to do that because of the consequence is not the right way to do this. And so for me, I would -- I do think we need to have this conversation and we should continue to have this conversation, but it has to be front and center. And we can't forget about the person who is dividing us and who himself is injecting this into the country to live up again and coming out again. We haven't seen it be this bad in recent time until the president has really made this a race issue whether it's about African-Americans, certainly he's doing it all over the board with immigrants, but we need to have this conversation.
That lit up the CNN commentator Nina Turner (who is black):
Jake, I cannot. I just can't. 1984, 1980, Gucci just a few days ago. This is not about President Donald Trump. This is about racism in the United States of America. Congresswoman, I hear you, but on this, we're not blaming President Trump.
Diaz Barragan tried to break in — "I'm saying he has divided this country" — and Turner — very excited said:
No, let me just say this... I am not going to continue to let politicians use this man as the excuse to deal with racism in this country. It's been going on for far too long in the United States of America. We need some real truth and reconciliation. Yes, president Trump is a racist. There is no doubt about it. But as we have seen, Democrats delve in racism as well. We've got to stop making this about who is a Republican, who is a Democrat. I want to know who say humanitarian. I want to know who's going to stand up for people's lives, starting with black people's lives. Because when you take care of black lives everybody's life is taken care of. Everyone's life taken care of. So no more about this -- these three men. It had nothing to do with President Trump. What Lieutenant Governor Fairfax is going through don't have nothing to do with President Trump. Northam wearing blackface don't have nothing to do with Donald Trump. Herring, wearing blackface has nothing to do with Donald Trump. This is about racism in the DNA of this country. And I am over it. We are traumatized, Jake, and we are sick of it. Politicians need to stop playing games.

[Author: noreply@blogger.com (Ann Althouse)]

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Sun, 10 Feb 2019 16:26:50 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Virginia Cnn Donald Trump Gucci Turner Trump Democratic Party United States of America Jake Tapper Fairfax Jake Tapper Nina Turner Ann Althouse Partisanship Trump derangement syndrome Democratic Party in Trumpland Nanette Diaz Barragan Trump Northam Diaz Barragán Gov. Northam Trump Diaz Barragan
Boris Johnson backs call for multibillion cut to UK aid budget https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/feb/10/boris-johnson-backs-call-for-multibillion-cut-to-uk-aid-budget Tory report says DfID could be folded into Foreign Office and aid spending redefined

Calls for a multibillion-pound cut in the UK’s overseas aid budget and closure of the Department for International Development (DfID) as a separate Whitehall entity are set out in a new Conservative vision for a post-Brexit “global Britain” backed by the former foreign secretary Boris Johnson.

Current definitions of aid spending would be broadened to include peacekeeping, and the BBC’s World Service would be expanded, as part of an effort to restore Britain’s ability to project soft and hard power.

Continue reading...]]>
Sun, 10 Feb 2019 16:00:06 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Politics UK Conservatives Society UK News Bbc Britain Foreign Policy Aid Global development Boris Johnson Whitehall Brexit Foreign Office Department for International Development (DfID World Service
Amy Klobuchar hears America singing. http://althouse.blogspot.com/2019/02/amy-klobuchar-hears-america-singing.html
The event is over now, so I've taken down the link to the live feed. I didn't get to hear much of the speech, but the heavy snowfall was a fantastic touch. Loved it. And loved the quoting of Whitman. She recited the first line of the poem that I'll reprint in full:
I hear America singing, the varied carols I hear,
Those of mechanics, each one singing his as it should be blithe and strong,
The carpenter singing his as he measures his plank or beam,
The mason singing his as he makes ready for work, or leaves off work,
The boatman singing what belongs to him in his boat, the deckhand singing on the steamboat deck,
The shoemaker singing as he sits on his bench, the hatter singing as he stands,
The wood-cutter’s song, the ploughboy’s on his way in the morning, or at noon intermission or at sundown,
The delicious singing of the mother, or of the young wife at work, or of the girl sewing or washing,
Each singing what belongs to him or her and to none else,
The day what belongs to the day—at night the party of young fellows, robust, friendly,
Singing with open mouths their strong melodious songs.
Beautiful... but I hear the poem crying out for parody. When I got to "The carpenter singing his as he measures his plank or beam," I wanted to rephrase that to include Jeff Bezos. Is that wrong? I feel that the nighttime party of Whitman's young, robust, friendly fellows would make that poem into a bawdy song lampooning the billionaires and politicians.

[Author: noreply@blogger.com (Ann Althouse)]

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Sun, 10 Feb 2019 15:54:58 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law America Snow Amy Klobuchar Jeff Bezos Whitman Walt Whitman Ann Althouse Whitman She
The Grammy's: So Many Awards, So Little Time http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/TalkleftThePoliticsOfCrime/~3/Fcy62juh13s/140 [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ]] ]]> Sun, 10 Feb 2019 14:28:23 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Korea Cbs How despicable (or clever) is Trump's "See you on the campaign TRAIL, Liz!" http://althouse.blogspot.com/2019/02/how-despicable-or-clever-is-trumps-see.html Today Elizabeth Warren, sometimes referred to by me as Pocahontas, joined the race for President. Will she run as our first Native American presidential candidate, or has she decided that after 32 years, this is not playing so well anymore? See you on the campaign TRAIL, Liz! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 9, 2019
I'm seeing Trump getting trashed — "Twitter Lampoons Trump for Apparent Trail of Tears Joke Aimed at Elizabeth Warren" (Mediaite).
"The joke here is that the Trail of Tears was a genocide. Get it? Get it?"
I'll just say 4 things:
1. Trump only wrote (yelled) "TRAIL." He didn't say "Trail of Tears." His haters are zeroing in on the Trail of Tears and insisting that's what he meant to refer to and that's what he thought was funny to say. It seems to me that "trail" is a more general term and a term that relates to Native Americans. It's that more general meaning that makes the specification "of Tears" understandable. It's as if these anti-Trumpsters have never heard of the Great Trail or the Natchez Trace.
2. If Trump's opponents really do feel empathy toward those who suffered in the Trail of Tears, why are they bringing it up to score political points? They're taking something weighty and somber and throwing it around gleefully, because they think they got Trump. Is that a smirk I see on their face?
3. Trump got his opponents to repeat his tweet. They are making it viral, because they think they are hurting him, but they are spotlighting Elizabeth Warren's worst problem and helping to insure that when we think about Elizabeth Warren, we think about her problematic use of the claim that she's Native American.
4. The Trump antagonists are giving us another example of the harshness of the left's demands. Whatever you say may be presented in the worst possible light. It seems that if anything can be portrayed as racist/sexist/homophobic, it will be, and you can be ruined in an instant in the America they have created and want to control. It's scary.

[Author: noreply@blogger.com (Ann Althouse)]

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Sun, 10 Feb 2019 13:14:04 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Elizabeth Warren America History Empathy Viral Native Americans Pocahontas Liz Trump Donald J Trump Natchez Trace Political correctness Ann Althouse Too Much Drama Trump rhetoric Elizabeth Warren Mediaite
Doesn't the FIRST STEP Act add juice to Eighth Amendment challenge to extreme stacked 924(c) sentence in Rivera-Ruperto? https://sentencing.typepad.com/sentencing_law_and_policy/2019/02/first-step-act-adds-juice-to-eighth-amendment-challenge-to-extreme-stacked-924c-sentence-in-rivera-r.html The question in the title of this post is prompted by the interesting intersection of an important sentencing reform in the new FIRST STEP Act and an important Eighth Amendment case that I have had my eye on for some time  finally getting before the Supreme Court.  Let me explain, starting with the FIRST STEP provision.

For those particularly concerned about extreme mandatory minimum sentences, Section 403 of the FIRST STEP Act is a heartening overdue change to federal sentencing law.  This provision, described as a "clarification of Section 924(c)," now eliminates the required "stacking" of 25-year mandatory minimums for using a firearm during other crimes for those offenders without a prior record convicted of multiple 924(c) counts at the same time.  In other words, the extreme 25-year recidivism enhancement of 924(c) is now to apply only to actual recidivists.

The prior requirement of "stacking" 924(c) counts led to Weldon Angelos' extreme 55-year mandatory-minimum sentence for selling marijuana with his personal guns nearby (which is discussed at length here by Paul Cassell, the judge forced to impose the sentence).  US Sentencing Commission data here and here shows that well over 100 offenders each year have been subject to convictions for multiple 924(c) counts.  Just a few of many extreme 924(c) stacked sentences are noted in prior posts here and and here and here.  Sadly, Congress did not make Section 403 of the FIRST STEP Act retroactive, and thus defendants previously subject to these extreme stacked sentences will get no direct relief from the new Act.

But there is one particular defendant with a particularly extreme stacked 924(c) sentence that I am hoping might get some indirect benefit from the new law in his on-going Eighth Amendment litigation.  Wendell Rivera–Ruperto, who was paid in 2010 by undercover FBI informants to serve as "armed security" at six faux drug deals, received a federal sentence of nearly 162 years, of which 130 years were for his six stacked convictions under 924(c).  As discussed here a year ago, in a terrific First Circuit opinion denying rehearing en banc in United States v. Rivera-Ruperto, No. 12-2364 (1st Cir. Feb 27, 2018) (available here), Judge David Barron lamented how judges "have no choice but to approve mandatory 'forever' sentences ... so long as they can hypothesize a rational reason for the legislature to have thought that the underlying criminal conduct was as serious as the large quantity drug possession at issue in Harmelin."  In so doing, Judge Barron highlights many questionable elements of the Harmelin ruling and, writing on behalf of the entire First Circuit, suggests SCOTUS take up Rivera–Ruperto to reconsider the "three-decades old, three-Justice concurrence in Harmelin."

As of a few days ago, as revealed in this SCOTUS docket sheet, all the cert papers have been finally filled in Rivera–Ruperto, and the Justices will consider the case at their February 22 conference.  Notably, and not surprisingly, the feds now say in opposition to cert that passage of the FIRST STEP Act reduces the important of the case: "future defendants in petitioner's position will not be subject to mandatory consecutive sentences of at least 25 years [and the] question presented by his case therefore has diminishing significance."  But, as the title of this post is meant to suggest, the fact that the Eighth Amendment is supposed to take guidance from an "evolving standards of decency" and be responsive to a "national consensus" against a sentence, I strongly believe the enactment of the FIRST STEP Act primarily operates to make Wendell Rivera–Ruperto's constitutional claim even more substantively potent. 

As I explained here, I see Justice Anthony Kennedy's departure as creating a new window of opportunity for advocates to urge overturning (or cutting back) the terrible Eighth Amendment precedent that is Harmelin.  Thus, I am rooting super hard for the Justices to grant cert in Rivera–Ruperto.   I am fearful the Court will remain fearful of taking on these issues and thus leave the (now-even-stronger) Eighth Amendment claim in this case to be considered anew through an inevitable 2255 motion.  Still, my fingers are crossed to support the cert chances of potentially the biggest non-capital Eighth Amendment case in a generation.

A few prior related posts:

[Author: Douglas A. Berman]

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Sun, 10 Feb 2019 12:55:14 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Supreme Court Law Congress Court Fbi United States Kennedy First Circuit Rivera Barron Anthony Kennedy David Barron Douglas A Berman US Sentencing Commission Paul Cassell Weldon Angelos Harmelin Entire First Circuit Rivera Ruperto Wendell Rivera Ruperto
"I’ve wanted a higher power to provide that same narcotic delight one feels in the early stages of a relationship." http://althouse.blogspot.com/2019/02/ive-wanted-higher-power-to-provide-that.html From "Life Without Longing/Who would I be if I wasn’t hustling to make some other person, real or imagined, fall in love with me?" by Melissa Broder (NYT). More text and lots of photographs at the link, including one of a Statue of Liberty street performer checking his iPhone.
What men or gods are these? What maidens loth? What mad pursuit? What struggle to escape?...

[Author: noreply@blogger.com (Ann Althouse)]

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Sun, 10 Feb 2019 12:23:16 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Psychology Jewelry Law Relationships Poetry Love Paris Kissing John Keats Keats Statue of Liberty Ann Althouse Melissa Broder Religion Substitutes
This week at the court http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/scotusblog/pFXs/~3/8mXQNnYWp28/

On Friday, the justices meet for their February 15 conference.

The calendar for the February sitting, which will begin on Tuesday, February 19, is available on the Supreme Court’s website.

The post This week at the court appeared first on SCOTUSblog.

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Sun, 10 Feb 2019 12:00:10 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Supreme Court Law This Week at the Court
Cato joins amicus brief challenging Indian Child Welfare Act http://www.overlawyered.com/2019/02/cato-icwa-brief-fifth-circuit-brackeen/ “For Congress to impose a racialized and non-neutral regime on parents and children is not only unwise and unfair, but unconstitutional.” The Cato Institute has joined an amicus brief challenging the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) in the Fifth Circuit case of Brackeen v. Bernhard. I’ve got more details in a new post at Cato at Liberty. Earlier on ICWA here.

Tags: adoption, Cato Institute, Indian tribes
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Sun, 10 Feb 2019 11:59:27 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Congress Uncategorized Adoption Cato Cato Institute Fifth Circuit Bernhard ICWA Indian tribes Brackeen
Busy Legislative Session Has Lots of Employment Law Bills On Tap (Part 1) http://feeds.lexblog.com/~r/ConnecticutEmploymentLawBlog/~3/mVWkeC0JAN4/ The Connecticut General Assembly is already busy with a full compliment of employment law bills under consideration.  At this point, it seems likely that several will pass in one form or another and thus employers should be playing close attention to the developments.

Here are a few of the Senate ones that I’m watching (I’ll tackle the House bills in tomorrow’s post):

  • Senate Bill 1 – This is the Paid Family and Medical Leave bill that has been kicking around for a few years.  Late last week, the Labor & Public Employees Committee issued a new draft.  There are a LOT of details to this but in essence, the bill would have two major changes. First, it would create a new paid family leave insurance program that would take contributions from employees and distribute those contributions to employees who need to take paid leave — similar to a workers’ compensation program.  Second, the bill would make significant changes to the existing Connecticut Family Leave law, to broaden the law’s application to all types of employers and broaden when an employee may take the leave as well.  More to come as this bill progresses.  A hearing on the bill is scheduled for February 14, 2019.
  • Proposed Senate Bill 64 – This is a rehash of a bill that would limit so-called “captive audience” meetings.  The details are still in flux but the Labor & Public Employee committee voted to draft the bill on February 7, 2019.  I’ve discussed prior versions of the bill here, including the Attorney General’s concern that such a bill may not be legal.
  • Proposed Senate Bill 358 – This proposed bill would provide employees with time off to vote in elections.  The committee voted to draft the bill late last month but there’s no indication yet whether this would apply to all local elections (such as a town budget referendum) or just broad state elections.
  • Proposed Senate Bill 697 – This proposed bill, which is scheduled for a hearing on February 14, 2019 and is lacking details as of yet, would “place restrictions on workplace nondisclosure agreements to prohibit the silencing of victims in the workplace and to prevent sexual harassment by repeat offenders.”  This would seem to go further than the recent federal law which limited tax deductions for confidential sexual harassment settlements.
  • Proposed Senate Bill 700 – This bill would allow for electronic signatures by employees in the restaurant industry when distinguishing between service and non-service duties. This bill is also scheduled for a hearing on February 14th.  It would be a small but significant help to small employers who have trouble keeping up with the record-keeping requirements in this area.
  • Proposed Senate Bill 764 – This bill would prohibit on-call shift scheduling — something that has been under attack in prior sessions as well.  Specifically, the bill would “prohibit the employment practice of requiring an employee to call an employer prior to a scheduled shift to confirm that the employee is needed for the shift, and to require employers to give an employee at least twenty-four hours prior notice if the employee is not needed to work a scheduled shift.” The Labor & Public Employee committee voted to draft this proposal so watch for a full-fledged bill soon.
  • Proposed Senate Bill 765 – And then there’s this proposed bill scheduled for a hearing on February 14, 2019.  Right now, it states that the law would ensure all employees “receive fair and equal pay for equal work”.  What that means for employers is anyone’s guess right now.

This is about a busy a listing as you can reasonably expect to see from our part-time legislature.  It’s still early but that’s just the half of it.  I’ll tackle the House bills in my next post.

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Sun, 10 Feb 2019 11:58:59 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Senate Restaurants Bills Legislation Service House Scheduling Sexual Harassment Equal Pay Shift Senate Bill Confidentiality Connecticut General Assembly Paid Leave Wage & Hour Discrimination & Harassment Legislative Developments Paid Family Leave Captive Audience Proposed Bills Paid Family Medical Leave Featured Content Labor Public Employee Committee Election Leave Equal Work On-call Labor Public Employees Committee
Some recent highlights from Marijuana Law, Policy & Reform https://sentencing.typepad.com/sentencing_law_and_policy/2019/02/some-recent-highlights-from-marijuana-law-policy-reform.html Though it has only been a few weeks since I did a round-up of posts of note from my blogging over at Marijuana Law, Policy & Reform, interesting recent developments and some timely research prompts me to highlight some of the MLP&R action.  So, with criminal-justice-related stories at the top:

[Author: Douglas A. Berman]

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Sun, 10 Feb 2019 11:42:16 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Washington US United States John Boehner Ohio New York State Baltimore State US House Douglas A Berman National Cannabis Roundtable
Austin Police Chief is the last person who should be giving other chiefs advice on rape-clearance rate data! http://gritsforbreakfast.blogspot.com/2019/02/austin-police-chief-is-last-person-who.html Austin Police Chief Bryan Manley is scheduled to speak to the Major Cities Police Chiefs' Association in Washington D.C. this week to share "hard lessons he's learned" about how police categorize sexual assault cases.
He's not ready. Manley hasn't yet taken responsibility for what happened or been held accountable for his cynical strategy to blame rape victims for APD-management malfeasance. Until he does, he shouldn't be lecturing anybody on this topic. In fact, this might be a good week to cancel his trip and spend the time instead on self-reflection, or perhaps listening to some of the growing cadre of victims upset about how the department handled their cases.
Readers will recall Austin PD ousted the head of the sex crimes unit, Liz Donegan, because she refused to inflate data to make it look like her unit solved more crimes than it did. Under former Chief Art Acevedo, who is now chief in Houston, the department pressured her to claim detectives solved crimes but cases didn't go forward because victims refused to cooperate.
Donegan refused, and was dismissed from her post, replaced by officials who immediately began to change the data to increase "clearance rates" by 50 percent. When the news came out in a national podcast last fall, Manley doubled down, repeatedly insisting to the media, including to this writer, that victims' failure to cooperate was the source of the problem.
But an audit by the Texas Department of Public Safety, released with little notice by Chief Manley at a late-New-Years-Eve press conference, found that a third of cleared cases in the sample analyzed were improperly categorized as "exceptionally cleared" because the victims wouldn't cooperate.
That's significant because Chief Manley describes Donegan's ouster as stemming from a "disagreement" over how to report clearance-rate data, which he says was resolved when she was replaced. So he's granted publicly that she was dismissed over this issue under his predecessor, the only remaining question was whether APD was right to do so?
We learned on New Years Eve that they were not; she was a victim of some seriously shady employment practices. Donegan was wrongfully removed from her position because she wouldn't blame rape victims in her clearance-rate data for her own unit's failures. This can now be stated without fear of contradiction or accusation of libel. It's just true.
Manley wants to pretend the problems all stemmed from clerical errors, hoping to elide any culpability for malfeasance by APD brass. But that ignores the severity of the now-admitted/proven allegations. To repeat: APD dismissed the head of its sex-crimes unit because she wouldn't fake data, then changed the categorization of case results to blame victims for cases not going forward.
The chief has never publicly apologized either to Sgt. Donegan or the wrongly-blamed rape victims for his department's slanders against them, but now is going to lecture other chiefs about the "hard lessons" he's learned? Please!
Only one of two things can explain it: complete obliviousness or excessive chutzpah. Or, I suppose the third possibility is he's receiving really bad PR advice.
See prior, related Grits posts:

[Author: Gritsforbreakfast]

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Sun, 10 Feb 2019 11:12:34 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Washington Austin Houston Apd Texas Department of Public Safety DPS Manley Austin Police Gritsforbreakfast Austin PD Art Acevedo Donegan Bryan Manley Major Cities Police Chiefs Association Liz Donegan Sgt Donegan
Talk in the Raturday Night Café and the Google search it inspired. http://althouse.blogspot.com/2019/02/talk-in-raturday-night-cafe-and-google.html
Here's a link to last night's café.
"Marriage is the death of hope" brings up webpages that purport to quote Woody Allen. I'm dubious.
"Marriage is the death of romance" gets me to some boring relationship advice plus the assertion that it's the translation of a Chinese proverb:
I'm dubious. It used to be very common to hear characters on TV (often in ads) say "Ancient Chinese wisdom" (in a fake Chinese accent) followed by something in the form of a proverb (almost always a manifestly fake proverb).
"Marriage is the death of love" gets me to boring relationship advice, some more groping after a Chinese proverb, and a review of a play about Maynard Jackson, "the first African-American mayor of a major U.S. city, elected in Atlanta in 1973":
[Playwright Pearl Cleage has a] sagacious way with words, and epigrammatic pearls like "There's no greater cynic than a failed romantic" (a variation on George Carlin’s "Scratch a cynic and you will find a disappointed idealist"). Later, when Evey recalls an epiphany of self-discovery in Paris, she tells J.P., "Marriage is the death of love."
Ha ha. Scratch me, I'm a failed cynic.
Have you thought about Maynard Jackson recently? Did you know he fought Muhammad Ali?
“The only thing that really worries me is what happens if I hit him, for his sake and for mine as well,” [Mayor] Jackson said.
“[He] will not land one punch in one round, and if he dreamed it, he better wake up and apologize!” Ali responded....
But Jackson won with a technical knockout:
“Those trunks he had saved him because he had them too high.,” Ali told reporters. “I couldn’t hit him low because you’re not supposed to hit below the belt. He came with the trunks up to his breast, therefore I couldn’t hit him in the effective spots ‘cause he’s so big, he’s like a balloon, and if you hit him he’ll bust.”

[Author: noreply@blogger.com (Ann Althouse)]

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Sun, 10 Feb 2019 10:42:23 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Google Hope Marriage Law China Atlanta George Carlin Paris Boxing Theater Jackson Woody Allen Muhammad Ali Fake Ali Evey Ann Althouse I'm skeptical Rhhardin Aphorism Men In Shorts the Althouse comments community H. L. Mencken Maynard Jackson Phidippus Playwright Pearl Cleage J P Marriage
"Warren uses vivid speech that's fascinatingly similar to Trump's." http://althouse.blogspot.com/2019/02/warren-uses-vivid-speech-thats.html something I wrote on August 10, 2016, and I'm reading it again after writing about Elizabeth Warren's speech yesterday. In 2016, I was addressing Warren's tweet, "@realDonaldTrump makes death threats because he's a pathetic coward who can’t handle the fact that he’s losing to a girl." I want to add my new "Warren is like Trump" tag to that. And I want to find the transcript from yesterday's speech so I can pull quotes that made me feel it was Trumpish. But let me give you some of this 2016 material for its present-day worth. I had 4 things to say, but I'm only going to highlight ##3 and 4:
3. ... Is this some female privilege — she can say "girl" but a man can't? I think that what's going on is that Warren is purporting to read Trump's mind, so it's not her saying "girl." That's what's in there in his mind. He's the one denigrating Hillary, thinking of her as a girl. Or: He's reliving a childhood psychodrama, in which boys feel humiliated if they can't even beat a girl. Warren uses vivid speech that's fascinatingly similar to Trump's. She blurts out the language of a childhood taunt: Hah! You're losing to a girl! And she seems to think she can talk like the playground bully because it's not really her speaking, it's just her doing the voice of somebody else, somebody who hurt little Donald many years ago and who still lives inside his head, taunting him after all these decades.
4. I think Trump believes he's doing damned well. He had to fight through 16 Republicans to get the nomination. He had to defeat his party's establishment, just like Bernie Sanders tried to fight his party's establishment. Does Bernie feel humiliated for "losing to a girl"? That "girl" had her party's whole establishment pushing her along. She's promoted and held aloft by a former President of the United States. I think Trump feels he's in a valiant battle and it's still going on, not that he's losing.... But even if he were upset about losing, I doubt if it would be about the fact that Hillary is female, that any decent man should be able to beat any female. Why does Warren think she can ascribe such thoughts to him? I don't think she's correctly reading Trump's mind, but I also don't think she believes she is. I think she's trying to stir up excitement for Hillary, and the most exciting thing about this candidate few voters actually like as an individual, is that she's a woman... Think of voting for a woman. And think of voting against that terrible man, Donald Trump, who is fighting a woman — not because she's his political opponent in the election — but because he's a man, with screwed up man-thoughts, and she's a woman, so he needs to destroy her. Plunge into the psychodrama, people!
And we've been swimming in the psychodrama ever since. That's where Trump likes it, and that's where Warren likes it, and — prove me wrong, America! — that's where America likes it.

[Author: noreply@blogger.com (Ann Althouse)]

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Sun, 10 Feb 2019 10:33:23 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Elizabeth Warren America United States Warren Donald Trump Hillary Bernie Sanders Trump Donald 2016 Campaign Bernie Masculinity Ann Althouse Gender Politics Emotional Politics Trump rhetoric Warren is like Trump
Words of Ambiguity in Specification Save patent Scope http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/PatentlyO/~3/5KeWk1kz1HQ/ambiguity-specification-patent.html by Dennis Crouch

Continental Circuits LLC v. Intel Corp (Fed. Cir. 2019)

Claim-construction used to be the bread-and-butter of Federal Circuit decisions.  That standard was of course upset by the onslaught of eligibility decisions from district courts and BRI obviousness cases out of the PTAB.

The patents at issue here all relate to circuit board construction – and dealing with the problem of delamination. The claimed solution is uses “a unique surface structure . . . comprised of teeth that are preferably angled or hooked like fangs or canine teeth to enable one layer to mechanically grip a second layer.” The figure below from the patent provides an example of how the layers might fit together.

The toothy layers can be formed in various ways — etching

Step 6, as discussed subsequently in greater detail, involves the etching cavities, veins, openings, or gaps in the applied dielectric material 8, or more particularly an outermost surface thereof, to accommodate the teeth. One technique for forming the teeth is somewhat similar to what has been known as the swell and etch or desmear process, except that contrary to all known teachings in the prior art, in effect, a “double desmear process” is utilized .

During prosecution, the patentee also explained that the invention uses “two separate swell and etch steps” to form the teeth.  However, the claims themselves do not expressly require the double pass process.

In the first decision in this case, the district court considered the claims, specification, and prosecution history and found that the claims should be interpreted to require a double pass — even though not expressly required by the claims. Because the accused infringers only used a single-pass, non-infringement was then an easy finding.

On appeal,  the Federal Circuit has rejected the narrow claim construction.  As is its process, the court began with the claim language — finding that ” at least based on the plain language, the claims are not limited to a repeated desmear process.”  Moving then to the specification, the court found no “clear and unmistakable disclaimer” of the claim scope covering a single-pass method.  For the court here, the deciding factor appears to be the patent attorney’s care in drafting the specification. Here, the specification calls double desmear “one technique” that the invention “can be carried out” and “for example” rather than calling the approach “the invention.”

This approach here is properly seen as a patent drafting trick rather than an improved disclosure or invention.  We know this because, although the specification called its double-pass approach “one technique” it did not describe any other technique — except for the prior art single-pass technique that the specification bemoaned as inferior. 

Still, the Federal Circuit sided with the patentee and found that the words of ambiguity sufficient to avoid a claim scope narrowing.

Heeding the warning in Phillips to keep in mind that a goal of the specification is to provide a best mode to make and use an invention, phrases such as “one technique,” “can be carried out,” and “a way” indicate that using Probelec XB 7081 is only one method for making the invention and does not automatically lead to finding a clear disavowal of claim scope. We have also “expressly rejected the contention that if a patent describes only a single embodiment, the claims of the patent must be construed as being limited to that embodiment.” Id. . . . Additionally, distinguishing the double desmear process as “contrary to” or “in stark contrast” with the single desmear process, which again appears within the context of disclosures of the preferred embodiment, are not clear and unmistakable limiting statements. We have held that “[m]ere criticism of a particular embodiment . . . is not sufficient to rise to the level of clear disavowal.”

I’ll note that this decision is an example of the rhetorical approach of disassembly.  After the appellee pointed to ten different reasons for limiting claim scope, the court walked through each one individually — and concluding that each offered “mere” subtleties and not a “clear disclaimer.” The court did not consider the impact of the whole.  This is an easy criticism of the court’s decision, but the reality is that the court is now in a tough position.  I would have also criticized the decision if it had gone the other way (which it could have based upon an alternative statement of the case and reading of precedent).  The bigger problem here is that we need to step back and repeatedly ask – how can we build up this system in ways that truly encourage beneficial innovation and do not simply encourage extensive lawyering. This case is also a clear failure of the examiner who was told by the patentee that a particular aspect of the innovation was important, but then allowed the patent to issue without requiring that it be expressed in the claims.

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Sun, 10 Feb 2019 10:21:19 +0000 BlogLikes - Find Most Popular Blogs Law Patent Phillips Federal Circuit Dennis Crouch Continental Circuits LLC Intel Corp Fed