From NatlSecCnslrs on Twitter, who got it from Tumblr:
I am dead. I have died. pic.twitter.com/FEA8PAsPrB
— Natl Sec Counselors (@NatlSecCnslrs) July 25, 2018
We’ve linked an item from this series previously, but it deserves a post in itself: “Law’s Picture Books,” an exhibition at NYC’s Grolier Club, displayed more than 140 items from the Yale Law Library’s collection of images and writings on legal themes. In a series of ten posts at Concurring Opinions (link is to the series tag), Mark S. Weiner explores many of the highlights. They include images of courtrooms and of lawyers at work; books using mathematical and quantitative methods to address legal issues arising from water and land; images used in law teaching; tree-and-branch and other diagrams; and a 1554 treatise on criminal law whose breakthrough innovation was its inclusion of 60 woodcuts depicting specific crimes.
Instances of local governments litigating against themselves include Auckland, New Zealand’s appeal of its own land use decision, and a London council’s appeal of a parking ticket it had issued to one of its own vehicles [Lowering the Bar]
Bob Kamman, Procedurally Taxing: “I searched other Tax Court orders and decisions available at the Court’s website. Surprisingly, this is the only reference to Jarndyce. I searched for Dickens. There were petitioners named Dickens, and petitioners with an address on Dickens Street. But the only other Dickens reference came from an opinion by the same Judge Holmes” [U.S. Tax Court Judge Mark Holmes, who has won praise for his writing style]. It was a quote from Tale of Two Cities about oppressive rural taxation:
[The town’s] people were poor, and many of them were sitting at their doors, shredding spare onions and the like for supper, while many were at the fountain, washing leaves, and grasses, and any such small yieldings of the earth that could be eaten. Expressive signs of what made them poor, were not wanting; the tax for the state, the tax for the church, the tax for the lord, tax local and tax general, were to be paid here and to be paid there, according to solemn inscription in the little village, until the wonder was, that there was any village left unswallowed.
[Image from Joseph Hémard’s illustration of the French Tax Code, via Yale Law Library Rare Books Blog]
‘It’s my toy’ – property law
‘You promised me’ – contract law
‘He hit me first’ – criminal law
‘Daddy said I could’ – constitutional law
— the late Harold Berman of Harvard Law School, via John McGinnis, Law and Liberty.
Some others, via social media:
‘Mama said NO’- Supreme Court decision — Cathy Maddox on Twitter
‘Last week you said’ – case law — Dave Ferguson on Twitter
‘Stop repeating everything I say’ – copyright law — John Althouse Cohen
‘Make him turn it down’ — nuisance law
Is it a true story? It is at the least a widely circulated old story that many persons would have been in a position to correct if untrue. Here is a 1928 version [via Jot 101]
Solicitors in their private practice have evolved a language of their own, which weird though it may be, is seldom open to the reproach of obscurity. Very wisely they discard punctuations almost completely. They know that the omission or use of a comma in a legal document can be dangerous. A comma once cost the United States Government £400,000. It was nearly fifty years ago that the United States Congress in drafting a Tariff Bill enumerated in one section the articles to be left free of duty. Amongst these were “all foreign fruit-plants”. The copying clerk in his wisdom removed the hyphen and substituted for it a comma, making the clause read “all foreign fruit, plants, etc.” It took a year to rectify the error, and during that period all oranges, bananas, grapes, and other foreign fruits were admitted free of duty with the big loss to the State already mentioned…
Alexander Pope’s translation of a poem by Nicolas Boileau-Despréaux, via Eugene Volokh:
Once (says an author; where, I need not say)
Two Trav’lers found an Oyster in their way;
Both fierce, both hungry; the dispute grew strong,
While Scale in hand Dame Justice passed along.
Before her each with clamor pleads the Laws,
Explained the matter, and would win the cause.
Dame Justice weighing long the doubtful Right,
Takes, opens, swallows it, before their sight.
The cause of strife remov’d so rarely well,
“There take” (says Justice), “take ye each a shell
We thrive at Westminster on Fools like you:
‘Twas a fat oyster — live in peace — Adieu.”