Wednesday, February 10, 2016
Like the great wit Gore Vidal, Paul Theroux is a much better non-fiction essayist than novelist, though Paul has had a few fiction highlights along his lengthy and illustrious career.
His latest, Deep South: Four Seasons on Back Roads, dives deep into Southern Americana, in all its beautifully charming, gracious, violent, dark and ugly dimensions. It's a fresh look, and well worth the read.
Of course -- being Paul -- the cranky master traveler frequently goes off on fellow writers and their clichéd "mock danger" American travel narratives, the tropes about the "open road," the British travel writer's general disdain for American mores, along with Theroux's usual back-handed compliments and vicious (yet subtle) take-downs of those that inspire in him either jealousy or contempt (or both).
I could go on -- his descriptions of the current degrading and dehumanizing air travel process (as compared to the glory days of air travel) are hilarious and spot-on, and the intimate portraits of the many rural poor he encounters are insightful as well as sometimes shocking.
But this is a legal blog, so ta-dah!
There, can I go home now?
(Ok, it's a foreclosure case where Senior Judge Herb Stettin and Carlton Fields got subject matter jurisdiction wrong).
Tuesday, February 9, 2016
Monday, February 8, 2016
I'm not the kind of guy to say I told you so. Who am I kidding? Of course I am! I told you so!
N.J. Gov. Chris Christie goes on the war path against Florida Sen. Marco Rubio at the final Republican debate ahead of the New Hampshire primary.But the real brutality came in the after analysis where suds worm was called a "malfunctioning robot" and compared to none other than Dan Quayle. Man, that's brutal!
"You have not been involved in a consequential decision where you have had to be involved and accountable," Christie charged. "You just simply haven't."
"The fact is that what we need to do in this country is not to make the same mistake we made eight years ago," he continued, comparing Rubio to fellow one-term senator, President Obama. "Do not make the same mistake again."
Following Rubio's response, Christie again takes aim at the senator. "You see everybody," he said. "I want the people at home to see this. That is what Washington DC does," he said. "The drive-by attack at the beginning with incorrect and incomplete information and then the memorized 25-second speech."
"The memorized 30-second speech where you talk about how great America is at the end of it doesn't solve one problem for one person."
CHRIS CHRISTIE: Every morning when a United States Senator wakes up, they think about what kind of speech they can give, or what kind of bill they can drop.
Every morning when I wake up, I think about what kind of problem do I need to solve for the people who elected me. It is a much different experience...
Marco... You have not been involved in a consequential decision where you have had to be involved and accountable, you just simply haven't.
And the fact is when you talk about Hezbollah sanctions act that you list as one of your accomplishments, which you just did, you weren't even there to vote for it.
Don't worry Marco, if this whole 'leader of the free world' thing doesn't work out for you maybe we can bring back Rubio's coke house, gayish dance troupe, and foam parties!
The future will be better tomorrow! Me gustas tu, Marco! Me gustas tu!
Friday, February 5, 2016
Poor Marco Rubio, only slightly smarter than Sarah Palin, and terrified that someone is going to eventually find out. Even his supporters can't figure out why he matters.
Rick Santorum had one job to do in his appearance on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” on Thursday. He failed.Can't think of an accomplishment, huh? Well those Trump loving fascists @ Breitbart sure can! Here's their list including offenses like...
The former Pennsylvania senator, who dropped his presidential bid Wednesday, told co-hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski he is supporting Marco Rubio’s presidential campaign because the Florida senator is someone “who can work together with people.” But Santorum struggled to name one accomplishment Rubio has had in the Senate.
“He’s been in the Senate for four years,” Scarborough noted. “Can you name his top accomplishment in the Senate — actually working in the Senate doing something that tilted your decision to Marco Rubio?”
“If you look at being in the minority in the United States Senate in a year when nothing got — four years where nothing got done, I guess it’s hard to say there are accomplishments,” Santorum said. “I mean, tell me what happened during that four years that was an accomplishment for anybody? It was complete gridlock.”
Now I need to rinse my mouth because I agree with them. TPP is a steaming pile of crap.
This represents a significant legislative victory for the young Senator, who previously endorsed TPP and described Obama’s trade deal as the “second pillar” of a President Rubio’s three-pillar foreign policy strategy.
Moreover, Rubio was also successful in promoting foreign currency manipulation by helping to vote down a provision to crack down on the illicit practice that had been proposed by Ohio Republican Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) 50%.
And if things weren't hard enough for poor little Marco, some are spreading nasty rumors that our favorite anti-gay Latino Republican is really a closet homosexual.
An American blogger and conspiracy theorist believes he has evidence that Republican presidential contender Marco Rubio attended gay foam parties during the 1990’s and that he only pretends to be a devout Christian.
Journalist and author Wayne Madsen details the claims in a new report titled, ‘Rubio’s coke house, gayish dance troupe, and foam parties,’ in which he claims that a park that Rubio was arrested at with a group of friends for underage drinking in a car in 1989 was a cruising spot for gay men looking for sex.
Now I'd like to take this rare instance to come to Marco Rubio's defense. I was at most of those parties and Rubio was never part of the crowd. Also, his nickname was definitely not "The Suds Worm."
Happy weekend folks, fill your heart!
Thursday, February 4, 2016
Something is rotten in
Once again the world is laughing at Iowa. Late-night comedians and social media mavens are having a field day with jokes about missing caucusgoers and coin flips.
That’s fine. We can take ribbing over our quirky process. But what we can’t stomach is even the whiff of impropriety or error.
What happened Monday night at the Democratic caucuses was a debacle, period. Democracy, particularly at the local party level, can be slow, messy and obscure. But the refusal to undergo scrutiny or allow for an appeal reeks of autocracy.
The Iowa Democratic Party must act quickly to assure the accuracy of the caucus results, beyond a shadow of a doubt.
First of all, the results were too close not to do a complete audit of results. Two-tenths of 1 percent separated Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton. A caucus should not be confused with an election, but it’s worth noting that much larger margins trigger automatic recounts in other states.
Second, too many questions have been raised. Too many accounts have arisen of inconsistent counts, untrained and overwhelmed volunteers, confused voters, cramped precinct locations, a lack of voter registration forms and other problems. Too many of us, including members of the Register editorial board who were observing caucuses, saw opportunities for error amid Monday night’s chaos.Smells like Plutocracy to me, that conflicting mix of expensive cologne and spoiled caviar. And if the Democrats had issues, so did the GOP. Whiny crybaby and wannabe fascist dictator Donald Trump sounded like a total wuss when he complained about being cheated, but that doesn't mean he wasn't right.
Wednesday, February 3, 2016
We hold these bunkerisms to be self-evident:
1. You get pre-judgment interest when collecting appellate attorneys fees.
2. When you objection is sustained and a curative instruction given, you also need to move for mistrial if you still think there is error.
3. When you assert attorney-client privilege, the court has to conduct an in-camera inspection:
The failure to conduct an in-camera inspection of the discovery materials a party asserts are protected by the work product privilege constitutes a departure from the essential requirements of law subject to certiorari relief.Now back to your regularly scheduled intertube rabbit holes!
Tuesday, February 2, 2016
How bad is our Attorney General Ms. Bondi?
Florida’s top law enforcement officials knew by 2012 that Millennium Laboratories, the nation’s largest drug testing company, was defrauding Florida Medicaid of millions.
But that did not stop Attorney General Pam Bondi from urging Medicare to pay for high-priced and unnecessary drug screening tests at the heart of Millennium’s massive scam, even as her own office and federal prosecutors pursued civil charges against the company.
Hours after The Post reported on the letter Friday afternoon, Bondi, who previously declined to be interviewed for this story, wrote in an email that staffers had written the letter, and that, “Knowing what I know now, The Palm Beach Post is correct that the letter should not have been sent.”More on the "staffer-prepared" letter here.
God what a tool!
Monday, February 1, 2016
Do you wake up fresh every Monday with a beautiful vision?
Many out of state firms do, and their beautiful vision includes eliminating/absorbing small to midsize South Florida firms where lawyers have developed niche practices and a good reputations (even if landing national clients gets harder and harder for these folks):
Minneapolis-based Bowman and Brooke, known for representing the automotive industry in products liability cases, is opening two Florida offices—in Coral Gables and Orlando—and adding 29 attorneys.
Bowman and Brooke will merge with Coral Gables-based Seipp, Flick & Hosley, and the new 15-lawyer office will be headed by its managing partner, John Seipp. Seipp Flick's 12-lawyer Orlando office will be folded in and headed by Frank Hosley as the office managing partner. Three Seipp lawyers in Detroit also will join Bowman and Brooke's office there.
Also joining the Coral Gables office will be Wendy Lumish, head of Carlton Fields Jorden Burt's appellate and trial support practice groups, and partners Cristina Alonso and Alina Alonso Rodriguez.
Three partners from the Fort Lauderdale office of Arnstein & Lehr also are making the move—Robert Rudock, Whitney Cruz and Loren Fender, all members of the litigation practice group.
Paul Cereghini, chairman of Bowman and Brooke, said his firm had been scouting for Florida offices "for quite some time."Congratulations to all involved!
So what's the play for smaller local shops -- band together, forge on alone, or get absorbed by these "national platforms"?
Friday, January 29, 2016
Clean water for me, but not for thee!
A newly obtained document and related emails released on Thursday show that while the residents of Flint, Michigan were slowly being poisoned by lead-contaminated water last year, the offices of state officials in the city were "quietly" outfitted with water coolers by Gov. Rick Snyder's administration.
"While residents were being told to relax and not worry about the water, the Snyder administration was taking steps to limit exposure in its own building." —Lonnie Scott, Progress Michigan
The emails—obtained by Progress Michigan and posted online here (pdf)—reveal an exchange between employees of the Michigan Department of Technology, Management and Budget (DTMB) and other state officials regarding in-house "concern about Flint's WQ [water quality]" that occurred at a time in 2015 when many residents still had no idea there was a problem with the city's public water and more than ten months before Gov. Rick Snyder ultimately declared a state of emergency over the crisis. The document at issue—dated January 7, 2015—is an administrative order showing the state had decided to provide bottled-water coolers "positioned near water fountains" in state offices so that workers could "choose which water to drink."So you get to choose! Poison, or not poison. Which would you choose? When and where clean water is an option, I'll always go with that. But what about when it's not an option? I'm talking to YOU Florida!
After rejecting efforts to require the oil and gas industry to disclose carcinogens and monitor the effects of fracking on pregnant women and drinking water, the Florida House on Wednesday passed a bill to open the door to the high-pressure drilling technique. The measure, HB 191, allows the state to regulate and authorize the pumping of large volumes of water, sand and chemicals into the ground using high pressure to recover oil and gas deposits. It passed by a 73-45 vote with seven Republicans joining Democrats to oppose the measure. The bill bans the practice until state environmental regulators complete a study in 2017 to determine what potential impact the operations will have on the state’s geology and fragile water supply but also prohibits local governments from imposing their own bans or regulations.Sorry miss, that was only a little bit of carcinogens in your children's water.
Thursday, January 28, 2016
Holy hail do you realize the kind of danger you and your loved one could be in by participating in an embarrassing, on stage party game that requires you to carry a blue phallus-shaped balloon (I'm not sure about this part but it's a reasonable assumption) between your legs to your loving, equally embarrassed partner?