Around the Blawgosphere: Why the Law Doesn't Suck; Judge Alex Kozinski on the Big Screen

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Bloggers write to win

This week at Simple Justice, in honor of finding himself in possession of a copy of Writing to Win by Steven Stark, New York City solo Scott Greenfield decided to have a writing contest on his blog to give it away. The challenge? Finish this sentence:

“The law doesn’t suck; it’s just … “

Several legal bloggers took their shots:

Antonin I. Pribetic of The Trial Warrior Blog: “The law doesn’t suck; it’s just … Justice abhors a vacuum.”

Jeff Gamso of Gamso - For the Defense: “The Law [capitalization required] doesn’t suck; it’s just in exile on a tropical island, sipping a piña colada and waiting for an administration that remembers that the Bill of Rights was designed to protect us from the government which will set it free.”

Eric L. Mayer of The Unwashed Advocate: “The law doesn’t suck; it’s just finding its popularity waning in recent years and resorted to releasing a sex tape in hopes of scoring a coveted slot on Dancing with the Stars. In that respect, our law is nothing more than the American dream.”

Bruce Carton of Legal Blog Watch: “The law doesn’t suck; it’s just your imagination.”

Mark Bennett of Defending People: “The law doesn’t suck; it’s just that ‘doesn’t suck,’ as used herein, shall mean ‘sucks.’ “

But Greenfield ultimately chose the “utterly brilliant” response from Washington University School of Law professor Brian Tamanaha (who often posts at Balkinization), who wrote: “The law doesn’t suck; it’s just misunderstood.”

Kozinski goes to Hollywood

Above the Law’s David Lat snagged an interview with Judge Alex Kozinski of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals at San Francisco regarding his upcoming nonspeaking role in Atlas Shrugged: Part II.

Kozinski told Lat that he knows producer Harmon Kaslow through his son, Yale. He said he spent a day on set and thinks he’ll only be on screen for a few seconds. He wasn’t paid. “I did get a pretty nice lunch on the set and got to sit with the producers,” Kozinski said. “All told, it was great fun.”

Really, NLRB?

At The Delaware Employment Law Blog, Young Conaway Stargatt & Taylor associate Molly DiBianca notes a recent National Labor Relations Board decision that “has many employers (and their lawyers) up in arms.”

In Banner Health Systems, 358 NLRB 93 (2012), the NLRB held that an employer violated an employee’s rights under the National Labor Relations Act by requiring the employee to keep information confidential during an investigation. It admitted that in some cases, that might be warranted if “(1) witnesses were in need of protection; (2) evidence was in danger of being destroyed; (3) testimony was in danger of being fabricated; and (4) there was a need to prevent a cover-up.”

But come on, DiBianca writes. “If you are conducting an investigation of any kind and under any circumstances, I would argue that, at the very least, the last three questions suggested by the Board will be answered in the affirmative. If you didn’t care whether the to-be-questioned witnesses got together and matched their stories up in advance, you wouldn’t call it an investigation, would you? You’d call it conversation. Heck, you may even call it party talk, or dinner-table chit-chat but you would not call it an ‘investigation.’ “

DiBianca suggests that perhaps the NLRB doesn’t have its own copy of Black’s Law Dictionary with which to look up “investigation.”

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