- Illinois now requires showing of ID, signing of log to buy drain cleaner. So long as you’re not trying to vote! [Consumerist via @amyalkon]
- Tribute to no-longer-anonymous Ken White of Popehat and his work defending bloggers from legal threats [Scott Greenfield; earlier; Ken’s defense in Maryland of blogger Aaron Worthing; new case of science blogger in Texas]
- Politicos mobilize against risk that Wal-Mart will bring fresh produce choices to Harlem [Greg Beato] India frets about whether to allow chain stores, recapitulating a debate U.S. once went through [Tabarrok, MR]
- Colorado legislators honored at a luncheon where I spoke [CCJL]
- HHS launches initiative to audit health providers for compliance with HIPAA data privacy law, and many are unprepared [American Medical News, Dana Thrasher, Dom Nicastro/HealthLeaders Media]
- New scholarship on effects of Twombly/Iqbal [Drug and Device Law series first, second, third, CL&P]
- Congratulations to the outstanding Abnormal Use for winning the ABA’s “Blawg 100” vote for best torts blog; we feel pretty good about placing third without mounting a campaign. While exploring that site, don’t miss its stellar coverage of the tendentious documentary “Hot Coffee”.
- Popehat’s Ken to the rescue after Maine lawyer/lawmaker assists naturopath in bullying critical blogger [Popehat]
- Newt’s “patriotism made me stray” among highlights of the year in blame-shifting [Jacob Sullum]
- Nifong sidekick, now in a spot of legal bother himself, hits back with lawsuit [K C Johnson, Durham in Wonderland]
- Shareholder action: “Delaware approves $285 Million in Plaintiffs’ Lawyers’ Fees” [Bainbridge, WSJ Deal Journal, WSJ Law Blog]
- “Even one death is too many — WE MUST BAN NETI POTS!” [NYDN via Christopher Tozzo]
- Debatable premise of Joe Nocera analysis on Stephen Glass case: bar admission turn-down = “rest of his life … destroyed” [NYT, Howard Wasserman/Prawfs, earlier]
- Who says Connecticut never reforms liability? Towns won protection last year from some recreation-land tort exposure [CFPA, earlier here, here]
Cory Doctorow at BoingBoing covers the story the story of how Houston’s Burzynski Clinic has been “sending threatening letters to bloggers who questioned the science behind Burzynski’s therapy.” In particular, Ken at Popehat has been crossing swords with one particular correspondent who has been making menacing noises about the clinic’s reputational interests.
- Big win for Ted Frank against cy pres slush funds [CCAF, Fisher, Zywicki, CL&P, @tedfrank (“Ninth Circuit rules in my favor … but I still think I’m right”.)]
- “Can the Vatican Be Subject to ICC Prosecution?” [Ku/OJ]
- “Tennessee: ATS Sues City Over Right Turn Ticket Money” [The Newspaper]
- “Law firms dominating campaign contributions to Obama” [WaPo]
- Does that mean it’s an entitlement? Punitive damage limits face constitutional challenges in Arkansas, Missouri [Cal Punitives]
- Businessman sues to silence critical blogger, case is dismissed, now files suit #2 [Scott Greenfield]
- Going Hollywood? “The Supreme Court should move to Los Angeles” [Conor Friedersdorf]
- “Kentucky antidiscrimination law doesn’t bar discrimination based on litigiousness” [Volokh]
- “Lawyer sues to stop fireworks show; now wants $756K in fees from taxpayers” [CJAC, San Diego]
- Leahy bill reauthorizing VAWA (Violence Against Women Act) includes language codifying OCR assault on campus due process [Bader, Daily Caller, Inside Higher Ed, FIRE, earlier here, here]
- “One-Ninth the Freedom Kids Used To Have” [Free-Range Kids] “WARNING: Baby in pram! Anything could happen!” [same]
- New Zealand considers criminalizing breaches of fiduciary duty [Prof. Bainbridge]
- From libertarian Steve Chapman, a favorable rating for Rahm Emanuel as Chicago mayor [Chicago Tribune]
- Did California privacy legislation just regulate bloggers? [Eric Goldman, Paul Alan Levy]
At RedState, Leon Wolf has been parodying the work of Senatorial daughter and talk-show personality Meghan McCain. McCain’s lawyer, Albin Gess of Snell & Wilmer, wrote RedState editor Erich Erichson to threaten litigation over the posts, which prompted this magnificent letter in response (PDF) from Georgia attorney Christopher Scott Badeaux, representing Wolf. It also guaranteed more critical attention to McCain herself and her work, including this cruel entry by Ken at Popehat.
What Ken calls “the use of money and power to achieve censorship” — particularly in jurisdictions where judges are averse to awarding sanctions and anti-SLAPP protections are weak — is a continuing problem long overdue for open public discussion.
- Truth through intimidation? U.K.: “Chronic fatigue syndrome researchers face death threats from militants” [Guardian] Nanotechnologists are target of Unabomber copycat [Chronicle of Higher Education]
- Blogger (and frequent Overlawyered commenter) Amy Alkon criticizes intrusive TSA agent by name, agent threatens $500K libel suit [Mike Masnick/TechDirt, Mark Bennett]
- NYT fans “pill mill” hysteria, heedless of the costs [Sullum]
- Patent litigant “pursued baseless infringement allegations in bad faith and for an improper purpose.” More loser-pays, please [NLJ, PoL]
- Great moments in link solicitation [Scott Greenfield] Quality bar at feminist lawprof blog may not be set terribly high [Popehat]
- “Wow, this photo got over 475 views from being reposted on Overlawyered” [Erik Magraken]
- “Popular Comic Strip Has Fun With Wacky Warnings” [Bob Dorigo Jones]
“When people like Rachel Kane stand up to bullies, it makes it a little bit easier for each and every one of us to stand up to bullies,” writes Ken at Popehat about the blogger who runs a site making fun of some of the wares of the fashion chain Forever 21, and who’s not knuckling under despite a cease-and-desist letter from the store’s lawyer. More coverage: Atlantic Wire; press roundup at WTForever 21.
Massachusetts: “Robert C. Cirba, a member of the Spencer-East Brookfield Regional School Committee and former candidate for state representative, has resigned from the committee after the state Department of Labor Relations found that comments he made on his blog interfered with teacher negotiations.” Cirba had written disrespectfully on his blog about the Spencer-East Brookfield Teachers Association and says the teacher’s union had threatened to sue him personally as well as pursue a legal complaint against the board over the writings. [Worcester Telegram]