- Group letters by law professors opposing nominees should be treated with the respect due, normally zero [John McGinnis, Michael Krauss, Paul Caron/TaxProf with links to columns by Stephen Presser, Scott Douglas Gerber, and James Huffman]
- USA, courthouse to the world for compensation claims, even 100+ years later [Guardian on suit in Manhattan federal court by descendants of atrocities committed by Germans in what is now Namibia in early 1900s]
- Marvels of NYC tenant law: “Couple renting Chelsea pad hasn’t paid rent since 2010” [New York Post]
- Election results could mean 11th-hour save for embattled cause of consumer arbitration [Liz Kramer/Stinson Leonard Street LLP]
- Baltimore policing, family leave in Montgomery County, Uber/Lyft fingerprinting, getting money out of Howard County politics, and more in my latest Maryland policy roundup at Free State Notes;
- Speaking of ridesharing and regulation: “Without Uber or Lyft, Austin Experiences Skyrocketing DUI Rates” [Brittany Hunter, FEE]
- Washington Supreme Court: psychiatrist can be sued for failure to act when patient expressed homicidal thoughts, even though signs did not point to particular victim [Seattle Times, opinion in Volk v. DeMeerleer; compare Tarasoff duty-to-warn line of cases]
- University of Oregon, which suspended a law professor over an off-campus Hallowe’en costume, could use a refresher on free speech [Josh Blackman, Jonathan Turley, Hans Bader, Susan Kruth/FIRE, Eugene Volokh]
- Prenda Law saga continues: “Feds charge porn-troll lawyers in major fraud, extortion case” [Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Joe Mullin/ArsTechnica, indictment, our past coverage including this on attorney Hansmeier’s branching out into ADA web-accessibility complaints]
- Alas, incoming Attorney General Jeff Sessions has been a big defender of civil asset forfeiture [George Will, syndicated/San Angelo (Tex.) Standard-Times]
- Oklahoma law will force restaurants, hotels among others to post signs aimed at discouraging abortion [AP, Eugene Volokh]
- Time to repeal the Community Reinvestment Act [Howard Husock]
New ABA rules barring lawyers from displaying bias in selecting partners, experts, and even participants in practice-related social activities based on “socio-economic status” — such as the difference between high- and low-prestige schools? — could bring many of the operations of BigLaw to a grinding halt [Volokh]
Yesterday Harvard law professor Larry Tribe sent out a tweet brusquely dismissing the IRS targeting episode as a debunked non-scandal. I and others promptly took issue with him, and pointed him toward the August 5 D.C. Circuit opinion laying out the scandal’s genuineness. (I also referenced my Ricochet article summarizing the decision and citing the Inspector General report from Treasury.)
@walterolson I confess error wrt IRS ideological targeting. The IG report and the CADC panel decision seem right to me. Inexcusable abuse.
— Laurence Tribe (@tribelaw) August 18, 2016
I have on occasion had my differences with Prof. Tribe’s views, but what an honorable example he sets here. May all of us prove equally ready to re-examine our own views when challenged.
One incidental impact of a Trump presidency: mainstream law professors would develop a sudden, strange new respect for constitutional law concepts such as separation of powers and federalism, which tend to serve as checks on the power and ambition of the President and his backers. [Paul Horwitz, PrawfsBlawg]
- Fear of regulators drives many campuses to restrict speech [Greg Lukianoff of FIRE interviewed by Caleb Brown, Cato podcast] New UCLA Title IX policy requires faculty to inform on “possible” sex harassment, and Prof. Bainbridge objects;
- Tributes to my much admired colleague, the late Cato Institute education scholar Andrew Coulson [Neal McCluskey and Jason Bedrick, Adam Schaeffer, Nick Gillespie/Reason]
- “Total Law School Enrollment at Lowest Point Since 1977; 1L Class Size Lowest Since 1973” [Derek Muller]
- New Jersey: “Elizabeth Public Schools Spend More on Attorneys than Textbooks, Heat or Electricity” [WPIX (autoplays)]
- “I began to see the social sciences as tribal moral communities, becoming ever more committed to social justice, and ever less hospitable to dissenting views.” Jonathan Haidt interviewed by John Leo [Minding the Campus]
- Furor continues over U.S. Department of Education funding of “facilitated communication” with profoundly disabled persons [David Auerbach, Slate]
- “Rhode Island: Children Under 10 Shall Not Be Left Home Alone, Even Briefly” [Lenore Skenazy]
A proposed change in the law school accreditation standards that would lift the ban on students receiving academic credit for paid externships has drawn a lot of comment—and much of the comment is in opposition to lifting the ban.
Under the current standards, law students are barred from receiving both credit and pay for an externship. But the governing council of the ABA Section of Legal Education and Admissions to the Bar has approved for notice and comment a proposal that would eliminate the ban.
Comments on the proposal are here; for a student-eye recounting of the possible advantages of the proposal, scroll (h/t Ilya Somin) to the fifth letter in the series, by Peter Donohue, editor in chief of the George Mason Civil Rights Law Journal.
It is somewhat surprising (in a good way) to find the ABA inviting such a shakeup of the way things are done in legal academia, and less surprising to find many faculty resisting.
Just as other licensed professionals typically have an incentive to resist competition from alternative providers — lawyers to resist the incursions of paralegals, physicians those of RNs and pharmacists, and so forth — so professional educators have an incentive to resist competition from on-the-job training. That helps explain why the organized providers of government-licensed education are so keen to draw and enforce boundaries in this area: nothing for which the student gets paid should count toward obligatory time spent in education. And yet some employers would bid significant sums for the work efforts of lawyers in training, and that compensation in turn could make a dent in the typically high cost of obtaining a law degree. “Any proposed changes will come back to the council for final consideration in March.”
- To what extent should law schools pursue missions other than that of training lawyers to practice competently? [Ken at Popehat]
- Survivors of woman slain in terror attack seek $200 million from county of San Bernardino [Courthouse News] A pertinent 2001 Elizabeth Cabraser quote about terrorism and litigation: “If we sue each other, the terrorists win. We need to be united.”
- Self-driving car revolution is coming quickly, but there might still be time for feds to mess it up [Randal O’Toole]
- “NYT throws hissy-fit, sues over use of thumbnails in critical book” [Rebecca Tushnet via Mike Masnick, TechDirt]
- New laws from Brussels could endanger thousands of historic guns in British museums [Telegraph]
- Drawing on the organization’s entire moral authority, i.e. none at all, United Nations panel calls for U.S. to pay slavery reparations [Independent, Vice]
- Aviary Attorney: “The hottest bird lawyering game to come out of 1840s France!” [Steampowered via Lowering the Bar]