How Appealing

Friday, December 1, 2006

This Sunday's broadcast of FOX News Sunday to include an interview with Justice Stephen G. Breyer: Details here.
Posted at 11:05 PM by Howard Bashman


Available online from law.com: An article is headlined "Calif. Court: Video Game Makers Can Base Characters on Real People."

And the brand new installment of my "On Appeal" column is headlined "Just Looking: Should Internet Ignorance Be a Defense to Child Porn Charges?"

My essay begins, "Two appellate courts recently ruled that an individual who intentionally visited Web sites to view child pornography, but who did not intentionally save those images to his computer's hard drive, could not be convicted or punished for possessing images that were automatically saved due to the Web browser's cache functions. These rulings strike me as badly mistaken, for reasons that I shall explain further below."

The three cases that I discuss in the essay can all be freely accessed online. Those cases are: the Pennsylvania Superior Court's recent ruling in Commonwealth v. Diodoro; the Ninth Circuit's recent ruling in United States v. Kuchinski; and the Tenth Circuit's September 2002 ruling in United States v. Tucker.
Posted at 11:00 PM by Howard Bashman



"Same-sex 'marriage' heads to high court": The Washington Times today contains an article that begins, "Maryland's highest court is scheduled to hear arguments Monday on the same-sex 'marriage' issue." As noted in this recent post, that court is now webcasting its oral arguments.
Posted at 10:15 PM by Howard Bashman


"Supreme Court agrees to hear 'Bong Hits 4 Jesus' case": Stephen Henderson of McClatchy Newspapers provides this report.
Posted at 10:08 PM by Howard Bashman


"Court to decide 'Bong hits 4 Jesus' banner case": James Vicini of Reuters provides this report.

Reuters also reports that "Court to decide case on Bush's faith initiative."

And Greg Stohr of Bloomberg News reports that "Attack on Bush's Faith-Based Initiative Draws Top Court Review."
Posted at 05:38 PM by Howard Bashman



"Debate Framers: How environmentalists can win over the Supreme Court." Douglas T. Kendall and Jennifer Bradley have this essay online today at The New Republic.
Posted at 05:30 PM by Howard Bashman


In commentary regarding a proposed Michigan law known as the Coercive Abortion Prevention Act: Yesterday, The Detroit News published two competing op-eds on the topic. Jeffery M. Leving and Glenn Sacks had an op-ed entitled "Bill assumes male guilt and opens door to unfair prosecutions." And Suanne Thompson had an op-ed entitled "Does abortion coercion bill trample rights? No. Women need protection from undue pressure to have abortions."

You can view the text of this proposed piece of legislation, and view where it stands in the enactment process, via this link.
Posted at 05:25 PM by Howard Bashman



"First Major Post-Bush v. Gore Case to Go Out Not with a Bang But a Whimper": Law Professor Rick Hasen has this post today at his "Election Law" blog.
Posted at 03:25 PM by Howard Bashman


"Harvard Law School Celebration of Justice Scalia": Ed Whelan has this post today at National Review Online's "Bench Memos" blog.
Posted at 03:15 PM by Howard Bashman


U.S. Supreme Court grants review in "Bong Hits 4 Jesus" case and case asking whether taxpayers may sue to challenge the White House program of promoting federal aid to religious "faith-based" organizations: You can access today's Order List at this link.

At "SCOTUSblog," Lyle Denniston has a post titled "Court grants three cases."

And The Associated Press reports that "Court Takes 'Bong Hits 4 Jesus' Case" and "Faith-Based Charities to Be Reviewed."

My earlier coverage of the Ninth Circuit's ruling in the "Bong Hits 4 Jesus" case can be accessed here.

And my earlier coverage of the Seventh Circuit's 2-1 ruling that taxpayer standing existed to challenge the White House's program of promoting federal aid to religious "faith-based" organizations can be accessed here, while my coverage of the denial of rehearing en banc over the dissent of four judges can be accessed here.
Posted at 03:00 PM by Howard Bashman



You're rehired! And now you're fired! A unanimous three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit today issued an opinion that begins, "The issue on appeal is whether an employer has satisfied an arbitrator's award when it pays the employee back wages and simultaneously terminates the employee a second time for conduct independent of the first termination. This is a novel issue for this court."

Today's ruling holds that "the employer's payment of back pay acted as an effective reinstatement and the employer was free to terminate the employee a second time based on independent grounds, pending a second arbitration."
Posted at 01:10 PM by Howard Bashman



"State ends battle for girls' health records; Attorney general settles with Planned Parenthood over seizure of medical data": The Indianapolis Star today contains an article that begins, "Indiana Attorney General Steve Carter has conceded a longstanding legal battle with Planned Parenthood of Indiana over minors' reproductive health clinic records. On Thursday, representatives from Planned Parenthood and Carter's office signed a settlement agreement worked out after a Sept. 22 Indiana Court of Appeals ruling said a minor's right to privacy trumps the state's desire to search for evidence of abuse."
Posted at 10:35 AM by Howard Bashman


"A Surfeit of Secrecy: The Bush administration relies on a little-known tool to hide its antiterrorism activities from public scrutiny." Dahlia Lithwick has this essay in the December 2006 issue of The American Lawyer.
Posted at 10:33 AM by Howard Bashman


"Benchslapped: Is Judge Posner Getting Enough Fiber These Days?" David Lat has this post today at "Above the Law."
Posted at 10:28 AM by Howard Bashman


"Court rejects inquiry into leak to O'Reilly": The Kansas City Star today contains an article that begins, "The leak of Kansas abortion records to television commentator Bill O'Reilly won't be investigated by the Kansas Supreme Court."
Posted at 10:11 AM by Howard Bashman


"New Rules on Retaining Digital Business Documents": This audio segment (RealPlayer required) appeared on today's broadcast of NPR's "Morning Edition."

Additional background on the amendments to the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure governing electronic discovery, which take effect today, can be viewed at this link.

My related post from earlier this morning can be accessed here.
Posted at 10:00 AM by Howard Bashman



"Judge's Words Cost Him a Suspension of 30 Days": The New York Times today contains an article that begins, "In a 50-page opinion issued on Thursday, the New Jersey Supreme Court thoroughly analyzed a defendant's bad behavior. Nothing unusual -- except that the defendant was a judge."

And The Trenton Times reports today that "Judge suspended for brashness; Supreme Court puts Mathesius on one-month leave."

You can access yesterday's ruling of the Supreme Court of New Jersey at this link.
Posted at 08:37 AM by Howard Bashman



"Mt. Soledad cross vote reaffirmed by justices; Land transfer upheld in appellate decision": The San Diego Union-Tribune today contains an article that begins, "An appeals court ruling yesterday that upheld a voter-approved measure to transfer land under the Mount Soledad cross to the federal government boosted the hopes of cross supporters but is far from the final word in the emotionally charged legal battle."

My earlier coverage appears at this link.
Posted at 08:27 AM by Howard Bashman



"Raiding your inbox: The Bush administration's assault on privacy rights soon could reach e-mail messages stored on the Web." The Los Angeles Times today contains an editorial that begins, "In the latest illustration of the Bush administration's disregard for your privacy, the Justice Department is trying to convince a panel of federal judges that the FBI should be free to read your e-mail without obtaining a warrant. It's not all your e-mail -- only messages left on a Web-based system such as Hotmail or on your Internet service provider's computers."
Posted at 08:24 AM by Howard Bashman


"Reid's skills on offense to be tested; His minority leadership was strong; now he'll tackle Bush head-on": This article appears today in The Los Angeles Times.
Posted at 08:20 AM by Howard Bashman


"Same-sex marriage hearing expedited; Judge rules SJC should take on suit": The Boston Globe today contains an article that begins, "Governor Mitt Romney will get another chance to rally against gay marriage before he leaves office in January after a single justice ruled yesterday that the full state Supreme Judicial Court should rush to hear his lawsuit seeking to override the Legislature and put a constitutional amendment on the ballot that would ban same-sex marriages."

The Boston Herald reports today that "Full court to hear gay wed ballot push."

And The Republican of Springfield, Massachusetts reports today that "SJC debate eyes gay nuptials vote."
Posted at 08:10 AM by Howard Bashman



"Supreme Court Advocacy Project On School Desegregation": This article appears in the latest issue of The Harvard Law Record.
Posted at 08:07 AM by Howard Bashman


"A Lawyer in Marine Corps Khaki Wins Australian Support for His Guantanamo Client": The New York Times today contains an article that begins, "David Hicks, a 30-year-old Australian who is about to begin his sixth year at Guantanamo Bay, is gaining supporters for his release from diverse quarters."
Posted at 07:50 AM by Howard Bashman


"Company challenges FCC rules on cell phone jamming gear": c|net News.com provides a report that begins, "A small Florida company is taking on the Federal Communications Commission to change regulations prohibiting the sale of equipment used to scramble cell phone signals to local and state agencies. The company, CellAntenna, filed a lawsuit in the U.S. Court of Appeals in the 11th Circuit in Atlanta on November 22 challenging the Communications Act of 1934, which is enforced by the FCC."
Posted at 07:45 AM by Howard Bashman


"If there could be a case, then don't delete that e-mail; New rules protect data in the event of legal action": Today's issue of USA Today contains an article that begins, "An obscure change in the rules regarding production of evidence in federal court -- which goes into effect today -- will force companies to better manage the volumes of electronic information they generate and keep."

The Associated Press reports that "New Rules Compel Firms to Track E-Mails."

And online at The Pocket Part of The Yale Law Journal, U.S. District Judge Lee H. Rosenthal has an essay entitled "A Few Thoughts on Electronic Discovery After December 1, 2006."

Also today, two amendments to the Federal Rules of Appellate Procedure officially take effect. My current "On Appeal" column for law.com is headlined "What Do the Federal Appellate Procedure Rule Changes Mean for You?"
Posted at 07:38 AM by Howard Bashman



"List of Candidates for State's Top Court Goes to Spitzer for an Early Decision": Joseph Goldstein has this article today in The New York Sun.
Posted at 07:30 AM by Howard Bashman


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