Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Dear Tim Cook: Steve Jobs wouldn't have bollixed up the Genius Bar this way.

So now, apparently, I can't just make a Genius Bar appointment.  I have to go through too many hoops, including having to override the Support Page itself and, well, lying to Apple to get to a human.

NOTE TO APPLE:   Moving things around because a techie thinks that a change might be cool is not a good justification for change.

Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Steven Davidoff Solomon's interesting take on why law schools won't close.

Here.  I especially liked his point about why incentives favor bailing out law schools rather than closing them:
[A] closed law school is worth little, or most likely nothing, to creditors. The value is only in the revenue stream it produces and perhaps its building. (You could say the books also, but these are increasingly fewer.) And these days, that revenue stream is down 20 to 40 percent, meaning that if law schools were for-profit businesses, most would be failures.
A troubled law school is like Dracula: hard to kill. Creditors will not do so because even keeping a struggling school alive means there is some possibility of repayment.
On the other hand, those closed law school buildings might be valuable to universities, as they can be repurposed for other uses, freeing up different space on campus for things like expanded research space.  So law schools that aren't free-standing should still be nervous if they're underperforming. Now is not the time for complacency.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Congratulations to the wonderful Kathleen Lyon!

Full story here, but here's my favorite paragraph:
The 10th and final Distinguished Service Award is presented to Tax Division Office of the Assistant Attorney General Counsel to the Assistant Attorney General Kathleen E. Lyon for her extraordinary work in drafting the Program for Non-Prosecution Agreement or Non-Target Letters for Swiss Banks (Swiss Bank Program).  The department has had ongoing investigations into the use of foreign bank accounts to evade U.S. taxes, and the Swiss Bank Program was designed to encourage Swiss banks not already under investigation to cooperate with the department’s efforts.  Ms. Lyon was instrumental in drafting the terms of the Swiss Bank Program.
Brava, Kathleen!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

For my friends who aren't on Facebook--a recap of a happy event last month.

Yep, that's 1st place in the USDC Rising Star Smooth, B Division.  YAY!

Dear Financial Times newspaper: you win; I give up; I will not renew my subscription.

I have tried--and tried, and tried, and tried, and TRIED--to renew my newspaper subscription.  I can't reach a human; when the "human" calls me back, the phone call abruptly terminates after a few seconds; and the website for renewals won't record my credit card, no matter how hard I try:

I give up.  I won't read my beloved Lucy Kellaway any more.  I won't enjoy the weekend section, or the reports on business schools, or the editorials.  (Well, I often didn't enjoy the editorials that much, anyway.)

Please note that THIS PARTICULAR [firstname] [lastname] is calling it quits with your newspaper. 

Assuming that what this professor says is true (and I have no reason to think that it's not), I'm standing with him in solidarity.

See here.  Universities are supposed to be places in which divergent views can be heard with respect and intelligent debate.  That means that BOTH sides of a debate must be heard, not just the "popular" side.  Hat tip to Instapundit for alerting me to this story.