Thursday, April 29, 2010

You've got to love this noir-ish YouTube clip about law school life.

See here.  Hat tip to Bernie BurkC'est merveilleux!

Best comment about the Goldman Sachs brouhaha.

Take a look at Steven Pearlstein's column in yesterday's Washington Post (here):
There was a time when issuers would pay a premium to have Goldman Sachs underwrite their securities, just as there was a time when investors would pay a premium to buy into a Goldman-sponsored offering.

Today, Goldman has fully monetized the value of its reputation, and anyone who pays such a premium is a fool. 
No one's said it better.  Just because something might be legal (and we don't know enough yet to know whether Goldman's acts were legal here) doesn't make it ethical--and being unethical has ramifications all its own.

Friday, April 23, 2010

And I thought that financial fraud was porn.

But apparently I was mistaken:  see here.

Ah, so many jokes, so little time.  Let's start with:
I guess that the SEC didn't know financial fraud when it saw it.*  But porn, on the other hand, was obviously easy to identify....
Just amazing.


* Cf. Jacobellis v. Ohio, 378 U.S. 184, 197 (1964) (Stewart, J., concurring) ("I shall not today attempt further to define the kinds of material I understand to be embraced within that shorthand description] [of pornography; and perhaps I could never succeed in intelligibly doing so. But I know it when I see it.").

The answer to hateful speech is more speech.

And there's some very hateful speech going on in Denver right now, along with some counter-protests (see here).  I'm glad that there are people out there countering the Westboro Baptist Church speakers (see here). 

And when I say that the answer to hateful speech is more speech, I don't mean that the people answering the hateful speech have to acknowledge that the hateful speech is somehow equally morally equivalent to the non-hateful speech.  It's ok to tell people with whom you disagree that what they're saying is wrong, or even that you find what they're saying to be morally abhorent.  But it's not ok to prevent them from airing their views.

After I post this message, I'm going to join the Facebook page (here) mentioned in the articles.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Friday, April 16, 2010

A new social networking "first" for me....

So I'm taking a break from work by checking my Facebook page, and one of our Boyd law students IMs me to ask me to supervise his summer research paper.  I've got to say that's the fastest I've ever been asked (or have answered) such a request.

And it proves that our students are creative about finding ways to reach us.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

A nice update about Nancy Temple's career

Legal Ethics Forum has posted an update on Nancy Temple's career (here).  Nancy Temple was the Arthur Andersen lawyer whom the jurors in the obstruction of justice case blamed (wrongly, I think) as the "corrupt persuader."  I remember how several of my in-house counsel friends shuddered when they read Ms. Temple's email warning David Duncan not to call a recurring expense a non-recurring one in a press release.  That's a normal email for a lawyer to send, but I think that the jury felt as if Ms. Temple was trying to do something other than clear up an accounting classification.  (I also think that the public's distaste for lawyers generally contributed to the verdict.)

I'm very glad that Ms. Temple's doing well.  I think she had gotten a raw deal.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Above The Law has an interesting post about the disconnect between what law schools do and what law firms want.

See here.

An intriguing choice to replace Justice Stevens

Sure, all of the folks who are front-runners are good replacements.  No one's arguing that.  But if President Obama wanted to pick someone who would be a superb Supreme Court justice and who would trigger no partisan blow-ups at confirmation, why not U.S. District Court Judge Lee Rosenthal (here)?  She's incredibly smart, well-educated, and well-respected.

Yes, I've known Judge Rosenthal for many years, and I know her parents, so (as we say in Texas) I have a dog in the hunt.  But even people who aren't as well-acquainted with her as I am think that she's a wonderful judge.

She's worth a look, Mr. President.

Monday, April 05, 2010

On the other hand, the secondary market for our SECOND edition of the Enron book is doing surprisingly well.

An above-market price on our second edition takes some of the sting out of the $2.18 price on the first edition.  And, thanks to Mythbusters (here), we can start a secondary market for our first edition.  Of course, the Mythbusters didn't try the test with OUR book....

Thursday, April 01, 2010

Too much time, or not enough? The annual Peeps contest....

Who can't love the Peeps dioramas (here)?  Hat tip to my buddy Kathy Carpenter for sending this year's contest entries my way....

Update:  another hat tip to my buddy Kathleen Lyon for the Washington Post's Peeps contest (here).

Thanks to (sorry for the pun) MY "peeps" for forwarding these to me!

The sky's not falling, but law firm economics sure are changing.

See this article (here) in today's New York Times.  I keep saying that the numbers don't crunch--someday, law firms will have to rethink compensation AND billing from the ground up.