It’s spring time in the Bluegrass. Forsythia, daffodils, and fragrant hyacinths are bursting with color and the tulip poplars and redbuds are about to bloom. The birds chirping in the morning are so loud one almost needs earplugs. On the cusp of racing season, it’s all about the horses here. Blawg Review #101 should be about Dalmatians, but Matt Barr went to the dawgs with Blawg Review #99 at Begging To Differ. No problem. In Kentucky when we breed a horse to a zebra, we call it a zorse. For blawg carnival, it is no stretch for us to host a race of dalhmorses, or shall we call them horsatians? Let the festivities begin!
The sport of kings starts with the call to the post, no pun intended. Entries include Leon Gettler’s post Gonzales and the Ken Lay Defence at SoxFirst about the extraordinary sacking of eight federal attorneys and Ann Althouse's post at Althouse , Bong Hits 4 Jesus, a hilarious entry. It posits the question “What if instead of ‘Bong Hits 4 Jesus,’ the banner had said ‘Bong Stinks 4 Jesus,’” reporting on the oral arguments in the United States Supreme Court. The extensive comments are also a hoot. Alice Ristroph weighs in with Bong Hits for What? at Concurring Opinions. The national field includes David Stras at SCOTUSBLOG who posts Are Senior Justices and Judges Unconstitutional? The decision striking down the Child Online Protection Act was well-covered by Jack Balkin in his post Child Online Protection Act Still Unconstitutional at Balkinization and in a series of three in-depth posts by Adam Thierer at The Technology Liberation Front here, here and here.
"The sun shines bright on my old Kentucky home...." The local contingent includes KentuckyLawReview and its editor, Michael Stevens, a sire of Kentucky blawgs. Mike posts several interesting articles this week, including Where's the video? It's time for SCOKY and COA to open their doors to public access to tapes of arguments and
Editorial by Justice (Retired) Keller proposes a start on reforming how we get our judges in Kentucky. Edward Brutscher at KentuckyTort and Insurance Law Blog reports on a Kentucky opinion involving misrepresentations of material facts in reporting a loss that voids insurance coverage. You can find the post here. Ed and Mike were beta testing blawgs in 2004. Although he has a post dated 2/15/05 here, ever the gentleman, Mike insists BenCowgill (Legal Ethics Newsletter) was first with this "official" post 3/15/05 here, so we really have at least two sires. So far I'm the only mare, and I am glad the equestrian theme works because I would not like being called a bitch. Richard Bales, Salmon P. Chase College of Law Professor at Northern Kentucky University, is a co-editor of Work Place Prof Blog. You may recall their Labor Day 2006 Blawg Review #73. This week Professor Bales writes Your Blogging Activity May Be Protected by the NLRA.
Marcia Oddi at The Indiana Law Blog, our neighbor 700 furlongs to the north, is not a Kentuckian but we bask in the glow of her stellar work. She received the 2006 Excellence in Public Information and Education Award presented by the Indiana Judges Association. How many lawyers blogging can say that? Her extensive coverage of statewide legal proceedings and legislation is unparalleled by any other state weblog, yet she also covers legal news of national importance. Last week she yielded to her funny bone with her post about Pull My Finger® Fred. Can’t you just see her blushing as she writes “Really, I hesitate to link to this site, but …”?
The Southern California Law Blog by Jeffrey Lewis bursts out of the gate with its post O. J. Simpson Ordered To Auction Off ‘If I Did It’ Rights to Satisfy the Goldman Family’s Civil Judgment. Alongside is Seth Chandler at Conglomerate with the post Corporate Responsibility and Private Prisons for Infants.
Setting the pace, a report that the judiciary is taking no notice of law review articles penned by academics had a number of academics commenting up a storm this week. Eugene Volokh at the Volohk Conspiracy is sanguine at his post here, suggesting that immediate relevancy is not the sole criterion upon which legal scholarship should be judged. Orin Kerr at Volokh here suggests that the rise of online databases has lessened the need for citation to articles and further that the decline in citations is such ambiguous evidence that conclusions are hard to draw. Dale Carpenter at Volokh here opines that the appointment of fewer academics to the bench since the failed Bork appointment may be a factor. Steven Erickson skips the "why" and suggests Top Ten Ways to Improve Legal Scholarship. Jack Balkin at Balkinazation says that judges may increasingly look to blogs in the post Judges Lose Cite of Law Reviews. Daniel Solove explains at Concurring Opinions that the reason citations have declined is simply that most law review articles aren't that great and there's a lot of haystack for judges to search through to find the needle they would like to cite. His post is here.
Barbara Glesner Fines at Family Law Prof Blog gallops in with Allegations of wife’s attempted murder of husband do not state a claim for terminating his maintenance obligation. Paul Butler at BlackProf.com speeds around the track with Parents of the Week, a blistering review of the lawsuit a couple filed against a fertility clinic when the wife accidentally received sperm from a donor other than her husband. David Nieporent's commentary on the suit at Overlawyered, One Big Happy Family, generated a ton of comments.
David A. Giacalone at f/k/a…rounds the turn with an excellent article here about the graying of the bar and the ethical implications of aging lawyers, judges, and law firms. Prof. Alan Childress told me, "I don't know David, but Legal Profession Blog (as well as Idealawg) calls this post thought-provoking and sad. In fact, I nominate it for the most important and well-researched blog post of 2007. Nothing like it, ever. It will move everyone who reads it, for the most universal and profound reasons: age touches all. I cannot begin to describe how vital David's post is. It will be required reading for every legal ethics class I teach." Another entry in the "oh, dear" department is Carolyn Elefant's report that firm blogging may be inhibited by malpractice carriers' suggestion that blogging may make lawyers uninsurable at Law.com Blog Network, Warning: Blogging Can Render You Ineligible for Malpractice Insurance. Something to check out when the race ends.
A horse is a horse of course, of course, unless it is Blawg Review #101 of course…so we turn to IP NOTIONS and Ben D. Manevitz’ post Ear-Tugging Actually Means Call the Lawyers, an excellent commentary on defensible pop culture parody as opposed to a satirical jab at a celebrity, which causes problems, and which is the root of the lawsuit by Carol Burnett against the parties behind Family Guy. The Legal Scoop, a law student blog, posts Section 115 of The Copyright Act: From Ringtone Ruling to Royalty Rate Proceedings. Both Peter Black and Colin Samuels noted Viacom's hypocrisy in maintaining copyright-infringing materials on its own iFilm site. Peter posts Is Viacom a little hypocritical? at Freedom to Differ and Colin writes Unclean Hands at Infamy or Praise. Evan Brown posted a snippet of the Daily Show's wonderful explanation of the Viacom v. Google/YouTube case, Insightful Viacom v YouTube analysis at Internet Cases.
As our spotted competitors reach the third turn, a nod is given to a blog in the UK in honor of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II attending the 2007 Kentucky Derby. Legal IT posts 'Bloody foreigners' is a racist taunt, says Lords.
Into the stretch the anonymous transplanted southerner authoring Lawmummy posts All Work And No Play Makes Jack Partner and takes the lead, followed by Al Nye The Lawyer Guy who posts A Dozen Things To Consider Before Filing For Divorce. First on the list to think about is wisely "don't do it." The Legal Soapbox gains speed with the post The entreprenurial personality. Visit the site and you will see spots before your eyes.
Gaining ground in my corner of the blawgosphere are divorce and family law bloggers Janet Langjahr at Florida Divorce Law Blog with the pieces NV Bucks Trend and Weighs Grandparent Visitation - Even When Parents Together and New Grounds for Divorce: Polygamy, Jeanne Hannah at Updates In Michigan Family Law with practice tips Division of Defined Benefit Plan by Amended Judgment and QDRO and Stephen Worrall of Georgia Family Law Blog with Helping Georgia’s juvenile code grow up. Closing fast is Dan Nunley at Oklahoma Family Law Blog with the post Medicaid Encourages Divorce and John Crouch at The Family Law Newsletter with Utah enacts divorce prevention / trial separation package.
Nearing the wire Grace O'Malley notes the prevalence of women in the non-fluffy world of national security law at IntLawGrrls and is nose to nose with with Dan Filler and Steven Erickson who consider sex offenders. Filler notes at a post on Concurring Opinions here new efforts in Ohio to stigmatize offenders with fluorescent green license plates. Erickson takes a look at research suggesting a biological component to pedophilia at Crime and Consequences here.
An inquiry is posted, the winner announced, and a lawsuit is immediately filed. We turn, therefore, to our Litigation Practice Blawgs. Tough Legal Issues In Pet Food Cases Against Menu Foods is the pick of the week by Eric Turkewitz at New York Personal Injury Law Blog. South Carolina Personal Injury Blog by Ben Stevens delves into Recorded Statements and Insurance Adjusters. Ben also hosts the South Carolina Family Law Blog where he takes up the Burden of Proof in Divorce Cases. His neighbor, David Swanner, mentions his lecture in Kentucky last week in his post Why Case Management Matters at South Carolina Trial Law Blog.
Can't afford a lawyer and thinking about going pro se? David Giacalone has been busy this week at Shlep: The Self-Help Law ExPress posting, inter alia, The Florida Bar and you the people and finds little of comfort for those trying to litigate without legal help.
Enter our alternative dispute resolutions friends. Diane Levin at Online Guide To Mediation announced that the World Directory Of Alternative Dispute Resolutions Blogs now lists 100 ADR blogs and rolls out the red carpet for the newest members including Law Lady Divorce Blog by Stefani Quane. The prolific Victoria Pynchon posts Live by Suit; Die by Suit: DMCA Notices Violate the DMCA? at Settle It Now Negotiaion Blog. Geoff Sharp at New Zealand's Mediator blah...blah... does some nice blah...blahing...about marketing mediation services this week. All these lawyer mediators participate in the Mediation VBlog Project, and this week Vickie Pynchon does the interviewing of interesting folk. These ADR gurus worked things out for us and it is agreed that the real winner is the blawgosphere.
Carrots and peppermints for the workhorses who contributed and biscuits for the canines and sherpas who helped. If you blawgers are ever in Kentucky, look us up. We'll hand you a julep in a sterling cup, graced with mint now coming up from the garden. Country ham, cheese grits, limestone baby bibb lettuce, tenderloin with Henry Bain sauce, and asparagus are some of the foods we serve in the spring. Derby Pie®, too. We love company. Women really do wear hats. We all (honestly) sing "My Old Kentucky Home" on Derby Day and shed a tear. And wager on the ponies. There's nothing like it.
It's now time to step upon the tender grass, watch the budding of the hardwoods and await the blooming of the dogwoods and tulips. Blawg Review has information about next week’s post, and instructions on how to get your blawg post reviewed in upcoming issues.