Friday, March 31, 2006
A common fear in countries like China and South Korea is that reliance on market forces might result in imported expertise and an improvement of manufacturing capabilities, but that such reliance will do nothing to elevate homegrown companies from followers to leaders in technological innovation.
Bills enacted March 27, Acts 200-226
Act 201 contractor notices, claims against certain contractors and suppliers of dwellings, and providing a penalty.
Act 202 changing the amount at which a public construction contract let by a city, village, town, technical college district board, town sanitary district commission, or federated public library system must be let to the lowest responsible bidder.
Act 203 the time period during which impact fees must be used and the refunding of impact fees.
Act 204 construction liens, requirements for securing payment for work on publicly financed projects, and providing a penalty.
Act 205 falsifying title insurance documents and providing a penalty.
Act 206 nonprobate transfer of real property at death.
Act 207 changing the method of appointing members to a town plan commission.
Act 208 requiring notice to persons affected by zoning actions and comprehensive plans that change the allowable use of their property.
Act 209 a speed limit for operation of snowmobiles during the hours of darkness.
Act 210 noise level requirements for snowmobiles and granting rule-making authority.
Act 211 decreasing Medical Assistance reimbursement, transferring moneys from the general fund to the Medical Assistance trust fund, increasing the Medical Assistance reimbursement rate for nursing homes, supplementing the Medical Assistance reimbursement for nursing homes, and making appropriations.
Act 212 offenses against financial institutions, community currency exchanges, and providing penalties.
Act 213 adopting revised Article 5 of the Uniform Commercial Code, concerning letters of credit.
Act 214 certified public accountants.
Act 215 shareholders of service corporations that carry on the profession of certified public accounting; authority of the Division of Banking over loan companies and insurance premium finance companies; regulation of insurance premium finance companies, mortgage bankers, loan originators, and mortgage brokers; and requirements applicable to consumer loans secured by liens on residential real estate or mobile homes.
Act 216 miscellaneous remedial modifications to the Wisconsin Probate Code.
Act 217 regulation of bank branches, mergers and acquisitions of banks, providing an exemption from rule-making procedures, and granting rule-making authority.
Act 218 establishing a clearinghouse for information about special education transition services and vocational opportunities that are available in each county.
Act 219 the calculation of a school district's special adjustment aid and revenue limit when territory is detached from one or more school districts to create a new school district.
Act 220 eliminating various school district and Department of Public Instruction requirements, standards for information technology integration, and city health departments.
Act 221 providing information about meningococcal disease to parents of pupils in grades 6 to 12.
Act 222 state aid paid to consolidated school districts.
Act 223 allowing school boards to charge a fee for transporting certain pupils to school.
Act 224 transportation of public school pupils who live outside the school district in which they are enrolled.
Act 225 counting pupils who attend the Youth Challenge Academy for school district revenue limit purposes.
Act 226 various changes to the statutes governing public libraries.
Thursday, March 30, 2006
Appellate Decisions Released March 30, 2006
Rebernick v. Wausau General Ins. Co. (insurance companies must provide notice of availability of UIM coverage under umbrella policies)
Rocker v. USAA Casualty Ins. Co. (automobile insurance coverage and co-employee exclusions as related to a full-service car wash)
The Wisconsin Court of Appeals released these opinions today, including the following, which were recommended for publication:
State v. Medina (motion to disqualify prosecutor brought on the morning of jury selection is untimely (you think?), post-verdict motion to disqualify did not adduce clear and convincing evidence of a conflict-of-interest between prosecutor and defendant).
In re Warnecke II (DNR is required to withdraw real property from the Managed Forest Land program when owner fails to satisfy contingency in quit claim deed by which he acquired the property).
Immigration Reform debate
In one corner, you have Linda Clifford, a Madison lawyer with ties to Democratic Gov. Jim Doyle, who has already poured $140,000 of her own money into her Supreme Court campaign war chest and collected another $60,000.
Facing her is Washington County Judge Annette Ziegler, a conservative jurist who has little in her campaign account but has access to a lot of cash as a member of the family that launched the investment firm The Ziegler Cos. Inc.
That might not be all.
[John] Yingling, the political insider, said since it will probably be a while before there is another open seat on the court, he wouldn't be surprised to see enough candidates to fill a baseball diamond.
America now far outclasses Europe in its ability to produce intellectuals with root-and-branch schemes for improving society. There are lots of reasons for this. One is that America is much less consensus-orientated than Europe, especially when it comes to policymaking. ...
Another reason is that policy intellectuals can make a much better living in America than Europe. America has been fabulously successful at providing its projectors with Grand Academies in the form of lavishly-funded think-tanks, well over 100 of them in Washington alone. And American projectors have been superb at getting their message across.
Bills enacted March 24, Acts 194-199
Act 195 prescription drug labels.
Act 196 prescription drug labels.
Act 197 requiring a home care placement agency that places a home care worker in the residence of a home care consumer to provide notice to the consumer concerning the duties, responsibilities, and liabilities of the consumer with respect to the worker and notice to the worker concerning the worker's employment status and granting rule-making authority.
Act 198 public health planning, services, and functions; reporting of communicable diseases; public health agreements; required vaccinations, isolation, or quarantine; contracts between municipalities and federally recognized American Indian tribes or bands; and requiring the exercise of rule-making authority.
Act 199 special distinguishing registration plates associated with the Wisconsin Women's Health Foundation and making an appropriation.
Wednesday, March 29, 2006
Appellate Decisions Released March 29, 2006
The Wisconsin Court of Appeals released these opinions, including the following, which were recommended for publication:
Barber v. Weber, in which the Court stated that the doctrine of claim preclusion prevented the Zoning Board of Appeals' final decision from being challenged in circuit court other than on certiorari review.
Update: Dave Sheeley's report in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel [-TB]
Jay M.H. v. Winnebago County DH&HS, in which the Court concluded the Circuit Court has authority to reconsider its decision on a DHSS child abuse determination and must remand the determination to the agency for further proceedings upon a showing of newly discovered evidence.
P.S. The Associated Press reports
In another twist to an already convoluted case, the jury deciding whether al-Qaida conspirator Zacarias Moussaoui will be executed learned that he offered last month to testify for prosecutors against himself at his death penalty trial.
(via U.S. News & World Report)
Ziegler to run for Supreme Court
When Rod Dreher wrote an article for National Review confessing to being a Birkenstock wearing, countercultural conservative, hundreds of emails and letters of support came pouring in. Now he’s published Crunchy Cons--a manifesto that celebrates faith, family, community and nature against the forces of greed and lust. We spoke to him recently about his book, and why conservatism needs an overhaul.
It's Always Something
It's always something. Something to scare people who do not understand how trade really works, how markets work, or how wealth gets created and spread. You'd think that the abysmal track record of the worriers would dent their credibility. But it doesn't seem to.
Bills enacted March 23, Acts 184-193
Act 185 the immobilization, impoundment, and disposal of unregistered motor vehicles.
Act 186 authorizing the creation of neighborhood improvement districts.
Act 187 authorizing medically related actions by advanced practice nurse prescribers.
Act 188 expanding the Volunteer Health Care Provider Program to include provision of services to students from 4-year-old kindergarten to grade 6 in public elementary schools, charter schools, and private schools that participate in the Milwaukee Parental Choice Program and expanding the definition of volunteer health care provider.
Act 189 investment of funds by the City of Milwaukee Employes' Retirement System.
Act 190 exclusive municipal court jurisdiction in proceedings against juveniles 12 years of age or over, but under 16 years of age, for municipal traffic ordinance violations.
Act 191 notice of appeal of a municipal court judgment and requesting a jury trial on appeal from that judgment.
Act 192 noncompliance with a municipal court order.
Act 193 traffic control signal emergency preemption devices, and providing a penalty.
Tuesday, March 28, 2006
Appellate opinions released March 28
City of Milwaukee v. Ruby Washington (confinement for tuberculosis treatment under Wis. Stat. sec. 252.07(9) may be in jail when defendant previously failed to cooperated with home confinement order)
Mohns, Inc. v. TCF National Bank (Defendant's internal misdirection of Summons and Complaint to old address of just-moved legal department not "excusable neglect" justifying reopening default judgment under Wis. Stat. sec. 806.07(1)(a))
Prof. Christopher Wolfe of our chapter's advisory board serves on the Executive Committee of the McInerny Center.
Manufacturers’ Immunity and the FDA
- Hon. Daniel Troy, Sidley Austin Brown and Wood and former General Counsel, FDA
- Dr. Michael Greve, The American Enterprise Institute
- Professor Peter Hammer, Wayne State Law School
- Professor Lars Noah, University of Florida Law School
- Dean Bernard Dobranski, Ave Maria Law School, Moderator
The event was presented by the Federalist Society's Administrative Law & Regulation Practice Group.
... Democrats had to endure the additional embarrassment of hearing William Kristol, the editor of The Weekly Standard and a key conservative opinion-maker, announce on Fox News Sunday that Senator Feingold "is smarter than the Democratic Congressional leadership" and "deserves credit for taking a principled stand."
It is tempting to see the alliance of people who claim to be secular socialists with religious extremists pursuing a totalitarian theocratic vision as a temporary marriage of convenience based on a common opposition to Western imperialism. Although this explanation is correct for the distance that it covers, it does not account for the fact that rather than using Islamic militants as a vehicle for progressive politics many left-wing participants in this alliance have effectively become advocates of the Islamists' agenda.
Bills enacted March 22, Acts 174-183
Act 175 the enrollment of the University of Wisconsin Medical School.
Act 176 reporting of information by nonresident registrants under the campaign finance law.
Act 177 deletion of changes to campaign finance and related laws made by 2001 Wisconsin Act 109.
Act 178 deletion of changes to campaign finance and related laws made by 2001 Wisconsin Act 109 affecting public information concerning the Wisconsin election campaign fund.
Act 179 repealing provisions that may be inconsistent with federal law of, and modernizing, chapters 189 to 192 and 195 and other provisions related to railroad regulation and providing a penalty.
Act 180 grants to certain organizations that provide support to a manufacturing extension center.
Act 181 substance abuse by employees who are required to be paid the prevailing wage rate for work performed on projects of public works, other than state highway projects.
Act 182 the assessment of forfeitures by the Department of Commerce for violating certain licensing requirements for persons engaged in plumbing activities and granting rule-making authority.
Act 183 recovery of noneconomic damages in medical malpractice cases.
Monday, March 27, 2006
Here's a modest proposal for improving national political discussion. Let's stop equating our opponents WITH famous dictators, their chief executioners, police apparatus, or ideologies. Let's declare a national ceasefire on "his (or her) view reminds me of..." -- fill in the blank: Hitler, Goebbels, Eichman, Stalin, Mao, the Gestapo, the Gulag, the KGB, etc.
She gives a long list of examples, to which I'll add this from Without a Doubt by Damon Linker in The New Republic, reviewing Catholic Matters by Richard John Neuhaus.
But how can we know, by what authority can we determine, which authority is the right authority? This is a significant problem for anyone who combines a longing to obey with a refusal to recognize as authoritative the traditions into which he happens to have been born.
Carl Schmitt, the political theorist who devoted a great deal of thought to this dilemma, determined that such men have no choice but to make an arbitrary yet resolute decision to obey some authority, any authority. Taking account of the options in Germany in 1933, Schmitt swore obedience to Hitler. Neuhaus, of course, makes an infinitely more respectable decision in favor of the Vatican.
Bills enacted March 21, Acts 145-173
Act 146 amending and revising s. 86.21 (2) (a) of the statutes for the purpose of eliminating ambiguities (Revisor's Revision Bill).
Act 147 amending and revising sections 85.21 (3m) (b) 4. and 346.923 (6) of the statutes for the purpose of correcting and clarifying references (Revisor's Correction Bill).
Act 148 amending and revising sections 66.0621 (1) (b) and 229.844 (8) (c) of the statutes for the purpose of reconciling conflicts, supplying omissions, and repelling unintended repeals (Revisor's Correction Bill).
Act 149 repealing, consolidating, renumbering, amending and revising various provisions of the statutes for the purpose of correcting errors, supplying omissions, correcting, and clarifying references, and eliminating defects, anachronisms, conflicts, ambiguities, and obsolete provisions (Revisor's Revision Bill).
Act 150 deferred compensation program (suggested as remedial legislation by the Department of Employee Trust Funds).
Act 151 death benefits under the Wisconsin Retirement System (suggested as remedial legislation by the Department of Employee Trust Funds).
Act 152 access to medical records possessed by the Department of Employee Trust Funds (suggested as remedial legislation by the Department of Employee Trust Funds).
Act 153 changing the name of the fixed retirement investment trust to the core retirement investment trust (suggested as remedial legislation by the Department of Employee Trust Funds).
Act 154 calculation of death benefits and the amount of a money purchase annuity under the Wisconsin Retirement System (suggested as remedial legislation by the Department of Employee Trust Funds).
Act 155 renumbering and reorganizing various provisions of chapter 895 of the statutes and creating chapter 995 of the statutes. (Revisor's Revision Bill).
Act 156 the frequency of permanency plan reviews for a juvenile who is placed outside the home (suggested as remedial legislation by the Director of State Courts).
Act 157 changing the name of the appropriation for the Office of Lawyer Regulation (suggested as remedial legislation by the Director of State Courts).
Act 158 various changes regarding the Department of Financial Institutions and persons regulated by the Department of Financial Institutions and granting rule-making authority (suggested as remedial legislation by the Department of Financial Institutions).
Act 159 the deadline for applying for the Safe Drinking Water Loan Program (suggested as remedial legislation by the Department of Natural Resources).
Act 160 a system of classifying invasive species (suggested as remedial legislation by the Department of Natural Resources).
Act 161 boats and associated tackle and equipment that are public nuisances under the fish and game laws (suggested as remedial legislation by the Department of Natural Resources).
Act 162 the authority of a warden to kill certain dogs that injure wildlife (suggested as remedial legislation by the Department of Natural Resources).
Act 163 possession of firearms by juveniles while hunting (suggested as remedial legislation by the Department of Natural Resources).
Act 164 repealing reporting requirements related to area cooperation compacts.
Act 165 the provision of information regarding shaken baby syndrome and impacted babies to the parents of newborn infants, training regarding shaken baby syndrome and impacted babies for day care providers, and instruction regarding shaken baby syndrome and impacted babies for middle school and high school pupils; the identification of, and documentation of certain information concerning, shaken and impacted babies; granting rule-making authority; and making an appropriation.
Act 166 managing state forest lands, harvesting of timber from certain forested properties, emergencies on state forest lands, providing an exemption from emergency rule procedures, and requiring the exercise of rule-making authority.
Act 167 annual or consecutive month permits for certain overweight vehicles or vehicle combinations, requiring certain persons to maintain weight records related to the transportation of raw forest products, vehicle weight limitation violations, and providing a penalty.
Act 168 Council on Forestry membership.
Act 169 discharging a firearm in the direction of an electric or telecommunications transmission facility and providing a penalty.
Act 170 single trip permits for oversize vehicles transporting certain buildings on the highways.
Act 171 limiting the reasons for which a local government may withhold approval of a permit.
Act 172 making various changes in the worker's compensation law, requiring the exercise of rule-making authority, and making appropriations.
Act 173 damages to rental vehicles, and granting rule-making authority.
Appellate Decisions Released March 27, 2006
U.W. Law School needs moot court judges
The U.W. Law School’s annual national Evan A. Evans Constitutional Law Moot Court Competition needs judges! Judges for the oral arguments are needed on Friday,March 31st from 5:30-8:30 p.m., and Saturday, April 1st from 10 a.m. - 1p.m. Arguments will take place in the courtrooms of the new Dane County Courthouse (it’s your chance to sit in the judges’ seats!). The problem concerns First Amendment issues of Free Association and the EstablishmentNo specialized knowledge is needed--you will receive a bench memo containing the case information and relevant legal precedent. Participating attorneys will receive CLE credits. If you are able to help out, please contact Julia Ledbetter (email@example.com or 608-263-1691).
As Fleischacker states at the outset, he does not "defend any overarching thesis about Smith" (p. xv); rather, he raises by turns several philosophical issues of central concern to political philosophy or political economy--such as human nature, justice, and private property--and astutely shows, in more or less self-contained chapters, how Smith deals with them in WN.
To the sellout liberal boomers with their dunderhead politics and ideas, Lott juxtaposes a bevy of postmodern thinkers with cutting-edge politics and ideas. Unfortunately, time again runs out, and Lott can only list his heavy hitters. Professor Lott's List of Top Radical Writings begins--hold your hat--this way:
Walter Benn Michaels's neopragmatist critiques of identity, Paul Gilroy's elaboration of a diasporic "black Atlantic," Lisa Lowe's postnationalist deconstruction of U.S. reliance on and political exclusion of Asian labor, Lauren Berlant's explorations of antinormative citizenship, the exchanges between Judith Butler and Nancy Fraser on the relations between queer recognition and economic redistribution, Robyn Wiegman's attention to the institutional half-life of women's studies and the limitations of so-called whiteness studies, Lisa Duggan's attempts to suggest alternative discourses to redescribe the state....
Even hardened academics would break into a sweat just reading the list or identifying many of Lott's heroes.
Sunday, March 26, 2006
The [Wisconsin Supreme] Court invites the members of the Ethics 2000 Committee, the State Bar of Wisconsin, the Office of Lawyer Regulation, and other interested persons, to review its proposed revisions and comments to SCR Chapter 20. Interested persons may submit written corrections or comments to the Court on or before August 1, 2006.
His resignation [from neoconservatism] seems to me, in any case, a fairly notable event, as these things go, and that is because, among the neoconservative intellectuals, Fukuyama has surely been the most imaginative, the most playful in his thinking and the most ambitious. Then again, something about his departure may express a larger mood among the political intellectuals just now, not only on the right. For in the zones of liberalism and the left, as well, any number of people have likewise stood up in these post-9/11 times to accuse their oldest comrades of letting down the cause, and doors have slammed, and The Nation magazine has renamed itself The Weekly Purge. Nowadays, if you are any kind of political thinker at all, and you haven't issued a sweeping denunciation of your dearest friends, or haven't been hanged by them from a lamppost -- why, the spirit of the age has somehow passed you by.
Saturday, March 25, 2006
Appellate Decisions Released March 24, 2006
Appellate Decisions Released March 23, 2006
The Wisconsin Court of Appeals released these opinions on March 23, 2006, including the following, which were recommended for publication:
Borreson v. Yunto, holding that in an action to enforce a physical placement order, in which the petitioner establishes he has been unreasonably and intentionally denied periods of physical placement, he may recover attorney's fees.
Bilda v. County of Milwaukee, in which the Court addressed Bilda's challenge to the manner in which the County paid administrative, operational, and investment management costs associated with the Retirement System. Substantively, he claimed the County should have paid such expenses directly, instead of making a contribution in the projected amount of those costs into the retirement fund. The alleged result was a diminution in resources available to meet the obligations of the Retirement System amounting to, in plaintiffs' eyes, an unconstitutional Taking. Procedurally, he argued the County Board violated state law in not obtaining an actuarial report before modifying the funding structure of the Retirement System.
The Court rejected Bilda's procedural argument, finding the County substantially complied with the "actuarial report" requirement when the County Pension Study Commission received the actuary's projection that the proposed change would not materially affect the funding of the Retirement System.
On the substantive argument, the Court found that, while participating employees have a constitutionally protectable property interest in the benefits to which they are entitled, they do not have a property interest in determining exactly how the County fulfills its obligations. Because nothing in the adopted changes would decrease or impair their rights under the Retirement System, there could be no constitutionally-cognizable taking of a property right.
The Court affirmed the Circuit Court, finding (a) there was no constitutionally-protected property right and, even if there was, it had not been taken, and (b) no defect in the manner in which the County adopted its change to how it pays the administrative expenses of the Retirement System.
While most trial watchers expected Lay's defense team to use inventive tactics to secure an acquittal for the embattled former CEO, few expected the coconut-falling-on-head explanation for Lay's claim that he was out of the loop during the entirety of Enron's multibillion-dollar fall from grace.
As the trial resumed this morning, Lay's defense attorney used a diagram, a pointer and a coconut itself to dramatize the incident in what legal experts are already calling "The Gilligan Defense."
Friday, March 24, 2006
In one of Milwaukee's largest demonstrations in recent years, a mile-long swath of peaceful protesters marched into the city's downtown Thursday chanting, "¡Sí, se puede!" ("Yes, we can!"), carrying Mexican and American flags and signs condemning what they called "anti-immigrant" legislation.
Thursday, March 30, 7 p.m., Varsity Theatre: Jonah Goldberg, editor-at-large of the National Review Online and syndicated columnist, will speak about "Online Political Journalism."
Also upcoming at MU
Monday, March 27, 4:30 p.m., Alumni Memorial Union Ballroom: Marilyn Cochran-Smith, Millennium Professor of Teacher Education for Urban Schools at Boston College, will give the inaugural address in the Tommy G. Thompson Educational Reform Lecture Series on "Teaching for Social Justice."
Tuesday, March 28, 3 p.m., Beaumier Suite of Raynor Memorial Library: Juan E. Gilbert, a nationally recognized scholar in computer science and software engineering from Auburn University, will discuss "Application Quest: A Response to the U.S. Supreme Court Decision in the University of Michigan Affirmative Action Cases."
Wednesday, March 29, 7 p.m., Alumni Memorial Union Ballroom: Kurt Eichenwald, New York Times reporter who broke the story about the California youth performing sex acts via a web cam for pay, will discuss "A Delicate Balance: Objective Journalist or Engaged Citizen."
(via Stephen Kaus at the Huffington Post)
Also by Justice Ginzburg,
Brown v. Board of Education in International Context, given at the Centre for Human Rights, University of Pretoria, South Africa, February 7, 2006,
Advocating the Elimination of Gender-Based Discrimination:
The 1970s New Look at the Equality Principle, given at the
University of Cape Town, South Africa, February 10, 2006
While we reject the libertarian argument that every human problem has an economic solution, many social-change issues clearly have economic dimensions that are susceptible to creative business plans.
Thursday, March 23, 2006
A 25-year-old computer programmer in Michigan, [Matt] Dubay wants to know why it is only women who have "reproductive rights." He is upset about having to pay child support for a baby he never wanted. Not only did his former girlfriend know he didn't want children, says Dubay, she had told him she was infertile. When she got pregnant nonetheless, he asked her to get an abortion or place the baby for adoption. She decided instead to keep her child and secured a court order requiring him to pay $500 a month in support.
Not fair, Dubay complains. ... Roe v. Wade gives her and all women the right -- the constitutional right! -- to avoid parenthood and its responsibilities. Dubay argues that he should have the same right, and has filed a federal lawsuit that his supporters are calling "Roe v. Wade for men." Drafted by the National Center for Men, it contends that as a matter of equal rights, men who don't want a child should be permitted, early in pregnancy, to get "a financial abortion" releasing them from any future responsibility to the baby.
This critique is convincing enough for those inclined to be open to it, but Breyer fails to show why "active liberty" should trump most other Constitutional approaches. Why is active liberty any more valid than, say, a natural law approach to the Constitution? Indeed, is active liberty a unique conception at all, or is it merely an uncredited twist on John Hart Ely-like principles that emphasize the Constitution's democratic functions?
Last November, the staff union voted on a "no confidence" motion against senior management but spared [Secretary-General of the United Nations Kofi] Annan. "We not only have confidence in him (Annan), we support him fully," Staff Union President Rosemary Waters was quoted as saying in November. ...
But since then, there has been a dramatic change, with an overwhelming majority of staffers lined up against Annan and his reform proposals.
Most discussions of U.S. policy in Iraq assume that it should be informed by the lessons of Vietnam. But the conflict in Iraq today is a communal civil war, not a Maoist "people's war," and so those lessons are not valid. "Iraqization," in particular, is likely to make matters worse, not better.
Wednesday, March 22, 2006
Appellate Decisions Released March 22, 2006
The Wisconsin Court of Appeals released these opinions today, including the following, which was recommended for publication:
Krahenbuhl v. Wisconsin Dentistry Examining Board, finding no due process violation when the Board decided not to apply the Gilbert/Gimenez five-pronged test used for diagnosing unprofessional conduct when the conduct alleged sounds in fraud, not in a failure to meet minimum standards of professional care.
Another U.N. Official Demanding Speech Restrictions, and Faulting Denmark for Protecting Free Speech Too Much
It also reminds me of the danger posed by the recent movement supporting the use of international law to influence U.S. constitutional norms. As Prof. Peter Spiro, a supporter of the movement (and one of the leading U.S. international law scholars) has written, treaties can, in the long run, "insinuat[e] international law" that would create "a partial displacement of [U.S.] constitutional hegemony" -- for instance, with "an international norm against hate speech ... supply[ing] a basis for prohibiting [hate speech], the First Amendment notwithstanding." "In the short term," he argued, international norms would and should be "relevan[t] ... in domestic constitutional interpretation." And "[i]n the long run, [this tendency] may point to the Constitution's more complete subordination."
The massive change in how mentally ill people are treated may have had its roots in the advent of new drugs and the thinking of mental health professionals, but it was shaped in a courtroom, by judges who altered the legal status of those with crippling brain diseases.
More to the point, while the series quotes many people lamenting that society has failed the mentally ill, the fact is that society was never consulted in the matter. Mental hospitals weren’t closed as a result of an outcry from the population or because of legislative deliberation. They were closed largely because of changes mandated by courts and by an ideological change that preceded this. Elite thinking meant that the mentally ill were freed from asylums and sent to live in “the community” -- which itself became the asylum.
(via Sykes Writes)
Bills enacted March 17
Act 142 the Volunteer Fire Fighter and Emergency Medical Technician Service Award Program and the exclusion of wages earned for services performed as a volunteer fire fighter, emergency medical technician, or first responder from partial unemployment benefit determinations.
Act 143 registration of vehicles operated exclusively by volunteer fire departments and making an appropriation.
Act 144 crossing a fire hose that is being used in an emergency situation.
State v. S. Daley 2005 WI APP 260 (legality of a deferred prosecution agreement under State v. Barney, 213 Wis. 2d 344, 570 N.W.2d 731 (Ct. App 1997)).
DaimlerChrysler c/o ESIS v. LIRC, et al (stacking minimum permanent partial disability assessments under Wis. Admin. Code sec. DWD 80.32 for successive procedures beyond medical estimate of permanent partial disability)
The court also denied review in 41 other cases. There were dissents from denials of review in eight of those.
In the spirit of the E-Government Act of 2002, modifications have been made to the District Court CM/ECF system to provide PACER customers with access to written opinions free of charge. The modifications also allow PACER customers to search for written opinions using a new report that is free of charge. Written opinions have been defined by the Judicial Conference as "any document issued by a judge or judges of the court sitting in that capacity, that sets forth a reasoned explanation for a court's decision." The responsibility for determining which documents meet this definition rests with the authoring judge.
This functionality will only be available in courts that have installed District Court CM/ECF version 2.4 or higher, and will only provide free access to opinions filed after the court is actively using version 2.4.
Which appears to mean Eastern District yes, Western District no.
The Wisconsin Lawyers' Assistance Corporation (LAC) will hold its annual meeting of the Board of Directors Monday, March 27 from 11:30 a.m. - 1 p.m. at the State Bar Center in Madison. The Board of Directors will transact such business as may be properly brought before the meeting. The meeting is open to interested State Bar members.
Tuesday, March 21, 2006
Appellate Decisions Released March 21, 2006
The Wisconsin Court of Appeals released these opinions today, including the following, which were recommended for publication:
City of Oak Creek, By Its Water and Sewer Utility Commission v. Public Service Commission of Wisconsin (scope of Public Service Commission authority; judicial estoppel).
State v. Moore (sufficiency of evidence; multiplicitous counts).
Bills enacted March 16
Act 138 notice regarding unauthorized acquisition of personal information.
Act 139 prohibiting a register of deeds from recording certain instruments that contain a social security number and providing a penalty.
Act 140 allowing individuals to restrict release of credit reports and granting rule-making authority.
The Wisconsin Law Foundation (WLF) is soliciting applications, by April 7, for grants of up to $2,000 for 2006 - 07. Requests must involve charitable or educational programs that promote public understanding of the law, the improvement of administration of justice, or another law-related public service.
Fukuyama argues that neoconservatism was founded on four principles. The first is "a belief that the internal character of regimes matters." ...
... they believe in the use of American power for moral purposes. ...
Fukuyama identifies the third principle of neoconservatism as a "distrust of ambitious social engineering projects." ...
This skepticism about the uses of state money and power to address social problems is paired with another skepticism—the fourth element of neoconservatism—about the "effectiveness of international law and institutions to achieve either security or justice." ...
The charitable activities of the ultra-rich, programs beyond the scope of official development aid, are often devoted to the poorest of the poor. But the donors are also well aware of the fact that their involvement does wonders for their public images and that such magnanimity is beneficial to both those giving and receiving.
Former Virginia governor and centrist Democratic Presidential hopeful Mark Warner learned the dangers of posing for The [New York]Times Magazine this week when he landed on the cover, photographed by Alexei Hay.
A sallow Mr. Warner, his face ominously shadowed, was grinning, baring ivory-tinged, domino-sized chompers. He appeared to be wearing a maroon suit coat and a violet shirt for the occasion.
Monday, March 20, 2006
Appellate Opinions Released March 20, 2006
Bills enacted March 14
AN ACT to amend 66.0615 (1m) (d) 3.; and to create 66.0615 (1) (fm) and 66.0615 (1m) (d) 6. of the statutes; relating to: tourism promotion and development under room tax law.
AN ACT to renumber 86.195 (1) (a); to amend 86.195 (1) (d) 1., 86.195 (3) (intro.) and 86.195 (4) (b); and to create 86.195 (1) (am), 86.195 (2) (b) 4. and 86.195 (3) (e) of the statutes; relating to: displaying attractions on highway specific information signs.
The supreme court has wrapped up its initial open administrative conferences on the Ethics 2000 petition, and released a draft version [pdf 145 pp.] reflecting the most recent tentative votes.
There will be April and May administrative conferences for comment on the tentative draft. These will be considered in preparing a final draft with a further comment deadline of August 1, 2006. The court expects to issue a final order in September with and effective date of January 1 or July 1, 2007.
First, "It's a Wrap! ...... More or less" on the waning regular session of the legislature, including
The Individual Rights and Responsibilities Section and the Public Interest Law Section lobbied against SJR 53, the Gay Marriage Ban, which passed both houses on second consideration this year. It is expected that the proposed constitutional amendment will be put to the voters on the November ballot. Both sections anticipate launching a public education campaign to help Wisconsin citizens understand the effects of the proposal.
The State Bar opposed both attempts by the legislature to place caps on non-economic damage awards in medical malpractice cases. The first attempt, vetoed by Governor Doyle, would have placed a $450,000 limit on damages for adult and $550,000 for children, while the second attempt proposes a $750,000 cap. The bill passed both houses with a veto-proof majority. So, it is unclear how the Governor will act on this second proposal.
As you can see, the State Bar of Wisconsin and its lobbying sections work to improve the working lives of lawyers and those of Wisconsin citizens on vast range of issues before the State Legislature.
Second, "New Public Affairs Director Takes the Helm" on Lisa Roys (and see our earlier post)
Sunday, March 19, 2006
Oral argument week of March 19
Tuesday, March 21
State v. David J. Roberson 03AP2802-CR
Gary Richards v. First Union Securities, Inc. 04AP1877
Kenosha County Department of Human Services v. Jodie W. 05AP2-NM
Synopses of the above and live audio of arguments are available.
...the American Bar Association, the accrediting body for the nation's law schools, is scheduled to vote this summer on a standard concerning "equal opportunity and diversity" that requires law schools to have a diverse student body and faculty, rather than to try to have them.
There's more. Interpretation 211-1 of the proposed standard provides: "The requirement of a constitutional provision or statute that purports to prohibit consideration of gender, race, ethnicity or national origin in admissions or employment decisions is not a justification for a school's non-compliance with" the standard. (Emphasis added.)
The former soldiers were invited to MU as part of the Call To Duty Tour. The nationwide tour includes both gay and straight veterans who are hoping to restart dialogue about the Don't Ask, Don't Tell law.
The event was cosponsored by the Federalist Society and the Alliance for Tolerance and Diversity.
Saturday, March 18, 2006
Update: David A. Wise reports at sponsor WisPolitics.
Friday, March 17, 2006
Popper, Weber, and Hayek: The Epistemology and Politics of Ignorance
Karl Popper's methodology highlights our scientific ignorance: hence the need to institutionalize open-mindedness through controlled experiments that may falsify our fallible theories about the world. In his endorsement of "piecemeal social engineering," Popper assumes that the social-democratic state and its citizens are capable of detecting social problems, and of assessing the results of policies aimed at solving them, through a process of experimentation analogous to that of natural science. But we are not only scientifically but politically ignorant: ignorant of the facts that underpin political debate, which are brought to our attention by theories that, as Max Weber emphasized, can be tested only through counterfactual thought experiments. Public-opinion and political-psychology research suggest that human beings are far too unaware, illogical, and doctrinaire to conduct the rigorous theorizing that would be necessary to make piecemeal social engineering work. F. A. Hayek realized that the public could not engage, specifically, in piecemeal economic regulation but failed to draw the conclusion that this was due to a specific type of political ignorance: ignorance of economic theory.
Appellate Opinions Released March 17, 2006
The Wisconsin Supreme Court did not release any opinions or dispositional orders today, other than one related to attorney discipline.
The Wisconsin Court of Appeals did not release any opinions today.
"I have had a great experience working, both proactively and reactively, with our lobbying sections on legislation of interest," adds Roys. "My hope in reaching out to our members statewide is to assist these sections in recruiting more members with time and expertise to help round out the legislative program."
Thursday, March 16, 2006
Appellate opinions released March 16
State v. Jack W. Klubertanz (court adequately explained three year sentence noting defendant's five occasions of sexual contact with minor not "lapse of judgment" as he described it; circuit court correctly decided that it did not have the authority to modify the sentence on ground subsequent sexual assault of defendant in prison made the sentence unduly harsh)
Zakary Kessel v. Stansfield Vending, Inc. (summary judgment for hospital and vending company affirmed where parent knew beverage which later spilled on and burned minor was steaming hot)
Administrative Register effective March 15
Emergency rules now in effect.
Submittal of rules to legislative council clearinghouse.
Submittal of proposed rules to the legislature.
Rule orders filed with the revisor of statutes bureau.
If you're not ready to give up paper and Styrofoam exhibit boards, consider the following undeniable truths:
- We are living in an age where most information is delivered in the form of sound bites, video and photographs, primarily via television and the Internet.
- Jurors prefer to learn by seeing, not by hearing, because "seeing is believing."
- Jurors have short attention spans; they appreciate efficiency and loathe unnecessary delay.
The State Bar seeks candidates for three representatives to the American Bar Association (ABA) House of Delegates. ...
The State Bar Board of Governors will elect the delegates at its May meeting.
In most commodities markets, excluding energy markets, traders must be registered and the trades must be recorded. In the energy market, no such requirements are had. As a result, more than 80 percent of the trades in the natural gas market are done by unregistered traders in unrecorded trades.
Wednesday, March 15, 2006
Appellate opinions released March 15
State v. Thomas A. Mikulance (Wis. Stat. sec. 973.13 does not permit successive motion for post-conviction relief despite sec. 974.06(4) and State v. Escalona-Naranjo where defendant alleges neither that the State has failed to prove the prior conviction necessary to sustain the habitual criminal status nor that the penalty imposed is longer than permitted by law for a repeater)
State v. Ronald W. Stewart (sentence of eight years probation commuted to Wis. Stat. sec. 973.09(2)(b) five year maximum for defendant convicted of two felonies at the same time)
ConCrunchy blog secretly surveyed the contributors on the Crunchy Con blog to answer the question: How many Crunchy Conservatives does it take to screw in a light bulb?
(via Video meliora, proboque; Deteriora sequor)
Mr Brownback is not the only “Wilberforce Republican”. A growing number of people on the Christian right think that America's role in the world is to go out and slay dragons, whether they be in the form of religious persecution or prostitution. Plenty of young conservatives have turned their attention away from the domestic culture wars that their parents obsess about to more global issues like the environment and poverty.
Loftus: I believe the state Bar’s current president elect (Madison attorney Steve) Levine put forth a proposal that changes the bar’s organization from voluntary to mandatory. [sic, from mandatory to voluntary] Are you opposed to that idea?
Carnell: Yes, for a couple of reasons. That decision could be only made by the Supreme Court. I would be surprised if the Supreme Court would want to make that decision...a mandatory bar provides a lot of services to lawyers. If you go to a voluntary bar, it would be smaller, there would be less money available, and you would be less able to provide services to lawyers. Business and management services are especially important for solo practitioners, small firm lawyers who can’t afford to hire the consultants necessary to give them this type of advice and assistance. Members of the bar can get assistance without charge in running their businesses...There is also full time ethics counsel to answer questions, and a program that helps lawyers who have issues with mental health, drugs or alcohol -- to help them deal with those problems. You make the bar too small and you can't afford to give services to its members, and these are important services.
Attorneys need to understand in what form and when a party aggrieved by an adverse municipal court judgment may appeal for circuit court review, because severe consequences can flow from decisions made and strategies used at the outset of a client's municipal court case.
Tuesday, March 14, 2006
"I am very pleased to share the fabulous news that Professor Jeremy Waldron has accepted our tenured offer and will join us in Fall 2006," he wrote. Then came the kicker: "Jeremy is currently a University Professor and Professor of Law at Columbia."
He is also the third Columbia Law School professor to announce his intention to join N.Y.U.’s faculty in the past year.
The Wisconsin campaigners don't expect the White House to announce an exit strategy based on a few dozen referendum results, but they do expect home-state Representatives to take notice. The referendums will be held April 4, in conjunction with local elections.
State Bar Board March 3 Actions Taken
4) Failed on a roll call vote of 19 to 19, with Governor Smith abstaining, a motion to obtain, upon its completion, the information from the Legal Needs Study after which time a petition would be prepared to the Supreme Court for reconsideration and every grounds for reconsideration that can be determined at the time would be included.
Failed on a roll call vote of 19 to 19, with Governor Smith abstaining, a motion to amend the main motion to delete the requirement that the Bar wait for the Legal Needs Study.
Failed on a 10 to 28 show of hands, with Governor Smith abstaining, a motion that the State Bar file a concurrent motion with the Supreme Court to amend its rules regarding the WisTAF assessment and on the same day file an action for declaratory judgment in the Western District of Wisconsin contesting the constitutionality of the Order.
Failed on a 15 to 22 show of hands, with Governor Smith abstaining, a motion that the main motion be divided because there is a different majority vote needed for each part of the motion.
Approved by voice vote, with Governor Smith abstaining, a motion to ask that President Guerin talk to the Supreme Court on this issue and report back to the Board at the May Board meeting and that this issue be an action item on the May Board agenda.
Failed on a roll call vote of 9 to 29, with Governor Smith abstaining, a motion that the Board of Governors direct the State Bar President to promptly file a declaratory judgment in federal court to determine whether or not the action of the Supreme Court in passing the WisTAF petition is constitutional and is a constitutional exercise of their rights.
Failed on roll call vote of 22 to 16 for lack of a 60% majority, with Governor Smith abstaining, a motion to petition the Supreme Court to repeal the WisTAF assessment and as a secondary position that it make changes in the rule to accommodate the issues that we have raised today.
Unanimously approved by voice vote, with Governor Smith abstaining, a motion that between now and the May Board meeting, the membership be informed as to the status of the Board’s progress on this issue and be provided a summary as to what has happened since the $50 WisTAF assessment was passed and to invite comments and feedback from the membership.
Unanimously approved a motion to thank Past President Behnke for her work with the Board on the WisTAF issue.
Appellate Opinions Released March 14, 2006
The Wisconsin Court of Appeals released these opinions, including the following, which were recommended for publication:
State v. Walter T. Missouri (appeal of (a) judgment of conviction entered upon jury verdict finding Mr. Missouri guilty of possession of cocaine and resisting arrest, and (b) denial of postconviction motion for new trial based on newly discovered evidence).
Travelers Indemnity Co. of Illinois v. Staff Right, Inc. (worker's-compensation premiums).
Union Pacific Railroad Co. v. Motive Equipment, Inc. (federal preemption).
Bills enacted March 10
AN ACT to repeal 118.43 (6) (c) and 119.23 (2) (a) 2.; to amend 118.43 (6) (b) (intro.), 118.43 (6) (b) 9., 119.23 (2) (a) 1., 119.23 (2) (b) and 119.23 (10) (c); and to create 119.23 (2) (a) 7., 119.23 (7) (e), 119.23 (7) (f), 119.23 (9) and 119.23 (10) (am) of the statutes; relating to: the Milwaukee Parental Choice Program and the Student Achievement Guarantee in Education Program.
AN ACT to amend 343.50 (4), 343.50 (5) and 343.50 (6); and to create 343.06 (1) (L), 343.14 (2) (er), 343.17 (3) (a) 14., 343.20 (1) (f) and 343.20 (1m) of the statutes; relating to: operator's licenses and identification cards for aliens.
AN ACT to amend 59.34 (title), 59.34 (1) (e), 59.34 (2) (title), 59.34 (2) (a), 59.34 (2) (b) 1., 59.35 (5) and 59.38 (1) of the statutes; relating to: the compatibility of the offices of coroner or medical examiner, and certain emergency services positions.
AN ACT to repeal 138.056 (3) (a); to renumber 138.056 (3) (b); to amend 138.056 (3) (title); and to create 138.056 (3m) of the statutes; relating to: prepayment penalties on variable rate residential mortgage loans.
AN ACT to repeal 977.075 (1) (b), 977.075 (4) and 977.075 (5); to consolidate, renumber and amend 977.075 (1) (intro.) and (a); and to amend 977.075 (3) of the statutes; relating to: payments to the State Public Defender for legal representation.
AN ACT to repeal 20.625 (3); to amend 48.977 (4) (b) 5., 48.978 (2) (b) 10., 303.068 (1m), 767.05 (2), 801.05 (11) and 948.31 (3) (b); and to repeal and recreate chapter 822 of the statutes; relating to: the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act.
AN ACT to repeal 186.113 (1m); and to amend 186.41 (5m) of the statutes; relating to: out-of-state branch offices of credit unions (suggested as remedial legislation by the Department of Financial Institutions).
AN ACT to amend 183.09025 (4) (a) (intro.) of the statutes; relating to: administratively dissolved limited liability companies (suggested as remedial legislation by the Department of Financial Institutions).
AN ACT to renumber and amend 218.0143 (1); and to consolidate, renumber and amend 218.0143 (2) and (3) of the statutes; relating to: insurance requirements for motor vehicle retail installment contracts (suggested as remedial legislation by the Department of Financial Institutions).
AN ACT to repeal 186.35; and to amend 34.07, 34.08 (2), 186.082 (1) (b), 186.082 (2) (f), 186.086 (1) (b), 186.093 (1), 186.093 (2), 186.314 (4), 231.17, 445.125 (1) (b) 1. and 880.04 (2) (a) of the statutes; relating to: eliminating the Wisconsin credit union savings insurance corporation (suggested as remedial legislation by the Department of Financial Institutions).
How much the class identification of the two parties has really shifted in the last half-century can be seen from a 1952 Roper Survey that S. M. Lipset reanalyzed in the 1960s. Among blue-collar workers outside the South, Congregationalists voted 73 percent Republican, and Presbyterians and Episcopalians were close behind at 67 percent and 60 percent. The most Democratic of the blue-collar Protestants were the Baptists, of whom only 39 percent voted Republican, and the "other Protestants"--mostly fundamentalists--at 35 percent Republican.
Bills enacted March 8
AN ACT to create 20.505 (1) (qm) of the statutes; relating to: increasing low-income energy assistance and making an appropriation
The State of the News Media 2006 is the third in our annual effort to provide a comprehensive look each year at the state of American journalism.
I'm not a journalist, but doesn't annual mean each year?
Her case manager says Sally has gotten more flowers than any other transplant recipient. She has a lot of friends.
Including Ms. Postrel, who donated the kidney.
(via Kaus Files)
Wisconsin's counterclaim statute [Wis. Stat. sec. 802.07] says counterclaims may be brought, but the supreme court in A.B.C.G. [Enterprises Inc. v. First Bank Southeast N.A., 184 Wis. 2d 465, 515 N.W.2d 904 (1994)] said counterclaims must be brought for certain claims. A rule change to clarify when a counterclaim is compulsory would help litigants avoid the soup of uncertainty.
But can brain chemistry really account for an entire culture of conspiracy? Virtually every major event in history has spawned alternate theories.
Update: Conspiracy Theorist Has Elaborate Explanation For Why He's Single, from The Onion
Monday, March 13, 2006
As an expert on Jacobinism, he is effective--occasionally brilliant--in explaining why the philosophy is dangerous. He fails to account for why so few people understand its dangers.
Blog-related issues cover a broad spectrum well beyond employer concerns of the posting of company secrets. For example, can the employer regulate off-duty blogging because it believes the content injures the company's reputation, is embarrassing to the company, or disparages the company's products, management, or customers? There is intense debate over blogs, but no debate over the need for clear blogging policies. The practice of firing a worker for inappropriate blogging even has its own name, doocing (named for a fired worker who maintains the www.dooce.com Web site)
Rep. Scott Jensen resigns
The Web site takes users through an online interview, completing necessary forms and also provides blank versions of the new plain-English forms. All of the forms are for actions related to separation and divorce, proceedings in which about 70 percent of litigants statewide act without attorneys.
Appellate Opinions Released March 13, 2006
Sunday, March 12, 2006
Oral argument week of March 12
Tuesday, March 14
Shane T. Drinkwater v. American Family Mutual Ins. Co. 04AP1793
Office of Lawyer Regulation v. Randy J. Netzer 04AP2057-D
Julie Mair v. Trollhaugen Ski Resort 04AP1252
Live audio of arguments is available.
Update: Though not on its online schedule
The Wisconsin Court of Appeals, District IV (headquartered in Madison), will move its proceedings to the Portage County Courthouse in Stevens Point on Monday, March 13, 2006. ... Court will commence at 10:30 a.m. ...
The court will sit in the Branch 3 courtroom to hear oral argument in a case that originated in Portage County. The case, Wisconsin Central Farms v. Heartland Agricultural Marketing is a dispute between a potato grower and a potato marketer. ...
Legislative Activity - Bill to Be Acted on by Governor
Ethanol Bill Dies in Senate
Punitive Damages and Medical Malpractice Caps Pass Legislature
School Choice Gains Legislative Approval
Energy Bill Heads to Governor
Honorable Diane Sykes Delivers Hallows Lecture
Boyer to Serve on AWL Board
"The rule of law is a cathedral we have to build brick by brick," he said, referring to the need to help people all over the world share the kind of freedom Americans get through a fair judicial system.
"One of the pressing needs that remains in the ongoing battle for freedom around the world since the Berlin Wall was torn down is to establish the independent legal institutions that can give effect to the rule of law in emerging democracies," he said.
Saturday, March 11, 2006
A jury declined to award damages to a Millbrook couple who claimed that their seven-acre wooded property was severely damaged by a bonfire started by actor Matthew Modine.
The neighbors sued for the $41,038 cost of replacement trees.
Modine conceded liability, but his attorney argued that the Widdowsons' property has recovered and that new tree growth replaced the trees that the fire claimed.
(via DRI's The Voice)
Friday, March 10, 2006
Appellate Opinions Released March 10, 2006
By their nature, blogs may not fit within the private/public framework that the U.S. Supreme Court constructed for defamation law more than 30 years ago. Unlike traditional means of publication and broadcast - newspapers, magazines, television, and radio - blogs can help level the playing field for private and public figures. The distinguishing feature of many blogs is the interactive ability of readers to post comments in response to blog entries. Since anyone can start a blog - or respond to a blog posting with his or her own comment when the blog gives readers that opportunity - the private/public figure distinction may no longer be as meaningful for defamatory blogs. Indeed, both private and public figures have the same means and access, at least on the Internet, to counter false statements.
Feel free to email that you would have commented at our blog if you could.
As a practical matter, every blogger should know and understand basic defamation standards and the parameters of immunity applied pursuant to section 230. Future blogging defamation cases likely will refine the parameters for liability and immunity with courts basing their decisions, at least in part, on the context of the blog at issue.
Until further clarification by the courts, however, bloggers should "speak" as though they are potentially liable for false and defamatory speech in their postings, including for other persons' work that is substantially edited by the blogger. Based on the stated purposes of [The Communications Decency Act of 1996] section 230, bloggers probably can assume they would enjoy immunity for republishing, without editing, information found already on the Internet.
The 'war' to which the book refers concerns the definition and measurement of poverty.
Thursday, March 09, 2006
Appellate Opinions Released March 9, 2006
The tour is designed to provide local judges, clerks of circuit court, registers in probate, court staff, county board supervisors, sheriffs, lawyers, and others who work in the justice system an opportunity to share their ideas and concerns.
Critical Issues: Planning Priorities for the Wisconsin Court System
- Assistance to self-represented litigants
- Courthouse security
- Treatment and prevention of alcohol and drug dependency
- Alternatives to incarceration
Nearly 22,000 lawyers are members of the State Bar of Wisconsin. Almost 18,200 of you are eligible to vote. Yet, typically, only 5,500 to 6,000 cast ballots for president-elect, secretary, treasurer, and members of the Board of Governors.
It would have caused many British and American Muslims great pain because they would have been told by other Muslims that the publication was intended to show contempt for their religion, and though that perception would in most cases have been inaccurate and unjustified, the pain would nevertheless have been genuine.
He goes on to an analysis of whether or not freedom of speech includes a right to ridicule, concluding
So in a democracy no one, however powerful or impotent, can have a right not to be insulted or offended. ...
... No one's religious convictions can be thought to trump the freedom that makes democracy possible.
Across the globe, people are choosing to have fewer children or none at all. Governments are desperate to halt the trend, but their influence seems to stop at the bedroom door. Are some societies destined to become extinct? Hardly. It's more likely that conservatives will inherit the Earth. Like it or not, a growing proportion of the next generation will be born into families who believe that father knows best.
Wednesday, March 08, 2006
After law school, Kavanaugh spent two years clerking in federal appeals courts, first for Judge Walter Stapleton on the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals and then for 9th Circuit Judge Alex Kozinski (an icon for many legal conservatives, but something of an iconoclast himself).
Kozinski's clerkships are notoriously demanding, a kind of boot camp for young lawyers with Federalist Society credentials. A perfectionist and an outspoken conservative on a liberal court, Kozinski routinely cycles through dozens of drafts on opinions. To meet the workload, Kavanaugh and his fellow clerks worked in shifts. Mark Perry, now co-chair of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher's D.C. office, recalls that when he clerked alongside Kavanaugh, he took the early shift, which started at 6 a.m., while Kavanaugh had the "late" one, which began at 8 a.m. -- and ran until 9 or 10 at night, six days a week.
The two-hour forum was sponsored by the Federalist Society, the American Civil Liberties Union student chapter and the Law Association for Women.
Appellate opinions released March 8
State v. Germaine M. Taylor (sentence of 12 years of initial confinement and 6 years extended supervision not excessive for this nineteen-year-old defendant who had non-forced sexual intercourse with a fifteen-year-old girl, considering other criminal, though not violent, sexual activity)
Wisconsin Court of Appeals opinions, none recommended for publication
Brownson argues that the United States has a peculiar providential constitution, one that is extremely difficult to characterize and largely misunderstood. The United States, for as long as it could be said to have any constitution at all, has simply been the United States: a union of states in which the union is not derived from the states nor the states from the union. Even when the states declared independence and claimed themselves each to have state sovereignty, they did so as a union. Brownson attributes the failure of the Articles of Confederation to its failure to fit this unwritten constitution, and the success of the newer Constitution to its much better fit to the same. The American polity is so very odd because it has no sovereign people without states; no states without union; no union without states; and neither states nor union without the sovereign people. All three go together, and if you try to pry them apart, you end up with something that's not recognizably American.
Lisa M. Arent, Milwaukee; Grant E. Birtch, Neenah; Andrew J. Chevrez, West Allis; Gwendolyn G. Connolly, Milwaukee; Thomas L. Frenn, Milwaukee; C. Michael Hausman, Delafield; Gregg M. Herman, Milwaukee; John P. Macy, Waukesha; and Robert W. Swain, Appleton.
In the face of the majority's abdication of duty, it will be up to us as individuals to challenge the tax.
"Reflections on the Wisconsin Supreme Court" by Diane S. Sykes
The Wisconsin Supreme Court has enormous influence over the legal order and the political, social, and economic future of this state. These cases from the last term reflect a court quite willing to agressively assert itself to implement the statewide public policies it deems to be most desirable. The court is loosening the usual constraints on the use of its power, freeing itself to move the law essentially as a legislature would, except that its decisions are for the most part not susceptible of political correction as the legislature’s would be. Time will tell whether the court will continue the extraordinary activism of its 2004-2005 term, will adjust its pace, or take a breather. In the meantime--and this is true regardless of whether the trends of the last term continue or abate--the court’s work deserves closer attention from the legal community and the public.
(via Sykes Writes)
The State Bar elects a president-elect, secretary, and Judicial Council member and three divisions elect a president-elect this spring. Read the candidates statements. Find out who is running for governor in your district.
Bills enacted March 6
AN ACT to amend 281.75 (11) (a) 8.; and to create 281.75 (2) (e), 281.75 (7) (c) 7., 281.75 (11) (ae) and 281.75 (11m) of the statutes; relating to: compensation for certain wells contaminated by bacteria.
When a reporter noted that conservative talk show host Bill O'Reilly charged him with "pimping the Black community," Sharpton answered: "Why does he have me on his show every two weeks. So, is he pimping?"
P.S. Here is the Sharpton for President site. (via Dennis York)
Tuesday, March 07, 2006
Appellate opinions released March 8
The Wisconsin Court of Appeals opinions included recommended for publication:
State v. Jonathan Owens (trial court articulated sufficient and substantial reasons for denying Owens’s request for Earned Release Program (ERP) eligibility)
State v. Randy Mcgowan (evidence of another act that was alleged to have occurred when McGowan was ten years old and that involved a different alleged victim was improperly admitted in trial in which he was convicted of four counts of first-degree sexual assault of a child)
Margie Phelps, a member [of Westboro], said they decided not to attend after e-mails sent from "local and state officials," said action would be taken upon them, regardless of where they stood to protest, she said. "That sounds like a threat to arrest, to me," she said. "We’re not going to take that chance; we’ve got too many pickets to do."
State legislators in Illinois have already introduced a bill that is in line with the Campaign’s objectives. If passed, the legislation would require Illinois to enter into an interstate compact with other states enacting similar legislation. Under this interstate compact, each participating state would agree to allocate its entire slate of electors to the winner of the national popular vote. The compact would go into effect when states representing 270 electoral votes (enough to win the presidency) have agreed to the compact.
The eleven most populous states have 271 electoral votes following the 2000 Census. Therefore, if these 11 states were to choose to award their electors in accordance with the national popular vote total, then they could determine the outcome of the election.
Board of Governors: Draft Minutes: December 9, 2005
From item 10
Atty. Lisa Roys, Government Relations Coordinator for the State Bar, ... said that Assembly Bill 819 was a proposal by Representative Marlin Schneider and would require all law students who graduate from the University of Wisconsin Law School to have at least six credits in a clinical program. She said Representative Schneider indicated that he had introduced this bill because he had heard that graduating students from the University of Wisconsin Law School did not know the fundamental skills to practice.
The Board unanimously voted to oppose the bill.
From item 14
Executive Director Brown ... reported on the State Bar sections that were currently active in lobbying and highlighted the key points of the various bills being lobbied on by the sections. He also reported on pieces of legislation that were of interest to the Board which included AB 783/SB 401 regarding duties of real estate brokers, and AB 705 and SB 443 which related to adding a circuit court branch in Juneau County and a circuit court branch in Calumet County. He pointed out that the medical malpractice and collateral source bills were vetoed by the Governor, and the Daubert and Product Liability bills were ready to be sent to the Governor.
From item 15.
Past President Behnke reported that the Legislative Oversight Committee had been looking at the issue of how section lobbying fees were determined.
From item 21.
Atty. Erik Guenther, chair-elect of the State Bar’s Individual Rights and Responsibilities (IRR) Section, reported that the section’s proposal involved asking the State Bar to follow in the lead of the American Bar Association and oppose the Graham Amendment which had now been amended to the Graham-Levin Amendment.
In the course of the discussion
Governor Hickey said she thought there was a standing position on the Board to oppose all legislation that would take discretion away from judges in favor of the type of rules that were black and white.
The proposal passed 31-13.
The meeting ended after a one hour closed session discussion of WisTAF.
According to the opinion, in 1997, [Glenn J.] Caldwell obtained two vanity license plates reading Y5OV26 and 4GZZ5O, "a combination of letters and numbers that he knew would provide him with a technical defense to any summons issued to those cars."
"Notes, papers and other objects" left on the dashboard, the opinion says, obscured the registration sticker that would have indicated the plates were vanity plates, "to prevent the PVB [New York City’s Parking Violations Bureau] from matching the license plate number to the type of plate issued, thereby preventing proper identification of the vehicle." ...
"So the officer giving the ticket would not expect it to be a vanity plate," Cahill says, "and he would run it through the system like a regular plate. It wouldn’t pop up, and [the ticket] wouldn’t generate notice."
...Caldwell’s work experience included a 1991-95 stint as an administrative law judge adjudicating parking tickets. Caldwell acknowledged he kept his administrative law judge identification card and placed it on his dashboard to discourage officers from writing him tickets.
The court found several of Caldwell's arguments on appeal problematic in themselves.
"The panel was especially disturbed by respondent’s continued suggestion that notwithstanding his deceitful acts, his throwing away of the summonses was ‘harmless,’ since they were technically defective anyway," the appellate opinion states.
Caldwell proceeded pro se, but had a defender.
Robert J. Miletsky, a New York City lawyer who defends judges on conduct matters, questions whether Caldwell did anything wrong.
"I wish I would have thought of it," Miletsky says. "That’s pretty smart, and I don’t see why it violates any ethical provisions. I think it’s unusual for someone to actually have the intelligence to do that."
American patriots fought a rebellion against the British to maintain their property rights, including strong guarantees in the Constitution, and are quickly losing them through eminent domain takings and other methods. Could it be that a new epic struggle for the very soul of America is taking place today? Tom Fleming adresses that topic and other hot-button issues of the day.
The event will be held at the Milwaukee Athletic Club. Social Hour 5:30 pm, Dinner 6:30 pm, followed by the program. Reservations are required.
Monday, March 06, 2006
It was 15 years ago today that our 8-year-old son Ryan suffered a severe brain injury that left him unable to walk or talk or feed himself. He was in the hospital (in two hospitals, actually) for over six months, and ever since has lived with us at home. I thought I would share some of the lessons I've learned in these past 15 years ...
(via Sykes Writes)
Bills enacted March 1
AN ACT to renumber and amend 125.28 (1); and to amend 125.30 (1) and 125.34 (2) (a) of the statutes; relating to: fermented malt beverages wholesalers.
AN ACT to repeal 60.23 (21) (title); to renumber and amend 60.23 (21); and to amend 66.0107 (1) (a), 66.0107 (1) (b), 349.02 (2) (b) 2., 349.02 (2) (b) 4., 778.25 (1) (a) 1., 778.25 (1) (a) 1m., 818.02 (7) and 961.577 of the statutes; relating to: municipal ordinances regarding drug paraphernalia.
AN ACT to amend 29.301 (2) of the statutes; relating to: the color of clothing worn during a firearm deer hunting season.
AN ACT to amend 346.94 (15) of the statutes; relating to: allowing school buses to tow trailers.
AN ACT to amend 348.27 (7m) of the statutes; relating to: operating certain 3-vehicle combinations on the highways.
AN ACT to renumber and amend 117.17 (2); and to create 117.17 (2) (b) of the statutes; relating to: mailing of copies of school district reorganization orders issued by the School District Boundary Appeal Board.
AN ACT to amend 15.377 (8) (c) 5m. and 118.19 (10) (c) of the statutes; relating to: allowing the use of technologies other than fingerprint cards for background checks related to teacher licensing and changing a statutory reference to reflect the name change of the Wisconsin Council of Religious and Independent Schools (suggested as remedial legislation by the Department of Public Instruction).
AN ACT to repeal 118.16 (2) (b) of the statutes; relating to: a school attendance officer's duties.
If Congress earnestly desires to make our Court less adventurous and more respectful of precedent, here are four modest proposals to consider ...
that Bruce Springsteen next month will be releasing an album, We Shall Overcome The Seeger Sessions
Probably a punctuation mark missing there.
The new album will include renditions of "John Henry," "Eyes on the Prize," "Shenandoah," and "We Shall Overcome."
[Q] How much of this is a response to lobbying forces, such as fundamentalist Christian pressure?
[A.] It’s not so easy to disentangle the Administration and the Christian right. The President is an evangelical Christian and so are many people in his Administration. On many issues, though, industrial lobbyists hold sway. It must also be added that stem-cell research poses moral dilemmas that many Americans find hard to resolve—so to say that it’s blindly immoral to even question stem-cell research is, in my opinion, not fair.
Government Wins Solomon Amendment Case
In this case, FAIR has attempted to stretch a number of First Amendment doctrines well beyond the sort of activities these doctrines protect. The law schools object to having to treat military recruiters like other recruiters, but that regulation of conduct does not violate the First Amendment. To the extent that the Solomon Amendment incidentally affects expression, the law schools' effort to cast themselves as just like the schoolchildren in Barnette, the parade organizers in Hurley, and the Boy Scouts in Dale plainly overstates the expressive nature of their activity and the impact of the Solomon Amendment on it, while exaggerating the reach of our First Amendment precedents.
Because Congress could require law schools to provide equal access to military recruiters without violating the schools' freedoms of speech or association, the Court of Appeals erred in holding that the Solomon Amendment likely violates the First Amendment.
Appellate Opinions Released March 6, 2006
Litigation Section opposes Chiropractors Preference
An Act to amend 632.87 (3) (b) 1., 632.875 (1) (b) and 632.875 (2) (g); and to create 446.04 (6), 601.31 (1) (kr), 632.27, 632.726, 632.87 (3) (b) 5., 632.874, 632.875 (1) (am), 632.875 (2) (i) and 632.875 (4m) of the statutes; relating to: persons to whom liability insurance claim settlement checks must be made payable; independent evaluations for insurance coverage of chiropractic treatment; current procedural terminology codes on health insurance claim forms; and direct payment to a chiropractor.
Our State Bar's Litigation Section opposes the bill.
The Section specifically opposes Section 3 of the Bill that would create Section 632.27 of the Statutes to effectively require that chiropractors be included on any settlement check if they forward to the company an assignment of benefits form. This is special interest litigation which is intended to provide chiropractors with a mechanism for enforcing payment of their claims from settlement, regardless of the merits of the claim or the nature of the settlement.
Milwaukee County judicial rotation
M. Brennan - Civil
K. Christensen - Family
John DiMotto - Civil
J. Donald - Felony
M. Guolee - Family
D. Hansher - Civil
D. Konkol - Felony
J. Kremers - Felony
E. Lamelas - Civil
D. Noonan - Misdemeanor
T. Witkowiak - Felony
Cougar, a Madison-based instrumental post-rock band, samples Althouse's voice on two songs from its debut album, Law, including the first track, "Atlatl." ...
"Atlatl" is available for listening on Cougar's myspace profile, where it was uploaded in early February. The song is a moderately-paced guitar instrumental that features Althouse lecturing in a law school class on federal jurisdiction, originally recorded several years ago by Cougar guitarist Trent Johnson, one of her students.
Medical Malpractice Cap Revisited
More Litigation Reform - Obesity
And More - Punitive Damages
Taxpayer Protection Act
Recent Legislative Activity
Assembly Sets Calendar for Tuesday, March 7
Ethanol Prices Heading Through the Roof
JCRAR Acts to Suspend Portions of New Ins 9 Administrative Rules
Legislators Create Healthcare Committee
Nuclear Bill Introduced - Committee Hearing
Immigrant ID Legislation Advances
Study: Wisconsin Economy will Neither Boom nor Bust
DNR Provides Brownfield Grants
Sunday, March 05, 2006
Some numbers stand out.
- $37 million. The amount rung up by the warring parties since June 1, 2003, according to one court filing that attempted to put a number on the legal fees and costs.
-$44.95 million. The settlement between the main parties - the stadium district and Mitsubishi, which fabricated and built the roof.
Some fees are being contested by an insurer which is being asked to pay them. The fees have their defenders.
John Hinderaker, a Minneapolis attorney who helped defend the stadium district, said the "district bought a completely successful defense of an $87 million claim."
In his spare time, Hinderaker is a contributor to the PowerLine weblog.
Oral argument week of March 5
State v. Lee Terrence Presley 2005AP359-CR
In the Matter of the Guardianship and Protective Placement of Catherine P., Incompetent 2005AP494
Sylvia A. Shovers v. Gary D Shovers 2005AP706
State v. Otis G. Mattox 2005AP936-LV
School Choice Compromise Advances
Marriage Amendment Will Be on November 7 Ballot
Living Wage Tax Credit Introduced
Action Alerts:Vote on Death Penalty Referendum May Come Next Week
Family Planning Waiver before Senate
Rent-to-Own Bill Passes Senate -- Moves to Assembly
John Sigerson, co-author of A Manual on the Rudiments of Tuning and Registration, discusses how the validity of LaRouche's breathroughts in the domain of physical economy, can be verified through the study and performance of such great works of Classical art as J.S. Bach's choral motet "Jesu, meine Freude" and W.A. Mozart's "Ave verum corpus." Hosted by Harley Schlanger and assisted by members of the LaRouche Youth Movement.
Don't forget his breakthroughs in orthography.
Saturday, March 04, 2006
The evaporation of a Congressional majority in favor of budget austerity and limited government is linked to public opinion shifts. In 1990-'94 polls, 67 percent of Americans said the biggest threat to the U.S. in the future was big government; 69 percent said government creates more problems than it solves; 69 percent said the federal government controls too much of our daily lives; 79 percent stated that a smaller government would be more effective than a larger government.
That strong consensus has now broken up.
Friday, March 03, 2006
Appellate Opinions Released March 3, 2006
Thursday, March 02, 2006
This evening, the Assembly approved the bill 60 to 37, while a procedural move in the Senate blocked a final vote until tomorrow at the earliest.
Senators are discussing whether to hold the vote after 12:01 a.m. because critics prevented a final vote from happening today. But, if the vote does occur overnight, the measure is expected to pass.
Update: Here is their complete report.
Although the saw's assembly included a guard that shielded the blade, the guard had been removed. In his suit against Delta Machine and the manufacturer of the saw's blade guard, [Plaintff Noel] Spencer alleged that the blade guard was defective because it was too easily removed.
In order to move forward in this discussion we need to abandon all hope that marches, political theater, potlucks, education, lobbying, e-petitions, and campaigning are useful.
As to what they haven't read, they don't directly say What is to be done?
An effective action will do at least one of the following:
-disrupt the flow of commerce and the functioning of the US economy -directly disrupt the lives of the legislators who are making more funding available for the war -directly disrupt the lives of military recruiters -directly disrupt the lives of the people working for companies who are supporting the war -cause the US military to deploy troops domestically, pulling soldiers away from the war -create an atmosphere that does not support US troops who are serving
Appellate Opinions Released March 2, 2006
The RA [Residence (dormitory) Advisor], Lance Steiger, with help from a conservative foundation in Philadelphia, filed a federal lawsuit claiming his right to worship freely was violated by UW-Eau Claire's unwritten policy - now suspended - that prohibited RAs from holding political, religious or sales events in the dorms in which they work. ...
There is a proposed revised policy.
The policy, which requires approval by the UW Board of Regents, says RAs may "participate, organize, and lead any meetings or other activities within their rooms, floors or residence halls, or anywhere else on campus, to the same extent as other students. However, they may not use their positions to inappropriately influence, pressure, or coerce student residents to attend or participate."
The Business Law Section has been working for several years on a review of Wisconsin's business entity statutes, including the state's corporations statute, Chapter 180. Senate Bill 619 reflects those years of review and is a positive step for Wisconsin to take as it positions itself for future economic development.
"The die has now been cast," acknowledged the law's chief opponent, Sen. Russell Feingold, Wisconsin Democrat, after the Senate voted 84-15 to end his filibuster. "Obviously at this point, final passage of the reauthorization bill is now assured."
Respected journalists and partisan pundits alike attributed the Republican victories in the 2004 campaign in large part to "religious values." And while Republicans won that round, the next round will prove to be much tougher for them.
Wednesday, March 01, 2006
Administrative Register effective March 1
New material for insertion in the print edition:
Public Service Commission
Tables of Contents
Emergency rules now in effect.
Submittal of rules to legislative council clearinghouse.
Submittal of proposed rules to the legislature.
Rule orders filed with the revisor of statutes bureau.
Rules published with this register and final regulatory flexibility analyses.
Sections affected by rule revisions and corrections.
Sections affected by revisor’s corrections not published.
I have my own criticisms both of my one-time Trotskyist comrades and of my temporary neocon allies, but it can be said of the former that they saw Hitlerism and Stalinism coming—and also saw that the two foes would one day fuse together—and so did what they could to sound the alarm. And it can be said of the latter (which, alas, it can't be said of the former) that they looked at Milosevic and Saddam and the Taliban and realized that they would have to be confronted sooner rather than later.
(via Hugh Hewitt)
The Bench and Bar Committee of the State Bar of Wisconsin announces Barron County Circuit Court Branch II Judge Edward Brunner as the recipient of the State Bar of Wisconsin's 2005 Lifetime Jurist Achievement Award.
Supporters of the death penalty say the rash of new objections is not really about the minutiae of dosage or correct catheterization. Rather, it's all part of the continuing effort to chip away at support for capital punishment.
The Bench and Bar Committee of the State Bar of Wisconsin announces Milwaukee County Circuit Court Chief Judge Kitty K. Brennan as the recipient of the State Bar of Wisconsin's 2005 Judge of the Year Award.
Our State Bar will present the award at this year's convention.
The party of Franklin Roosevelt has assumed the role that the Republicans played from 1932 to 1980, when the New Deal drove the country's domestic development with a vision of public regulation of capitalist markets to make them more efficient and more fair. Republicans elected within that era could reduce our speed toward a social democratic future, but they could not alter the direction.
P.S. from The Onion, Democrats Vow Not To Give Up Hopelessness
...we were to create a new operating system and user interface knowing what we know today, how far could we go? What kinds of decisions would we make that we might have been unable to even consider 20 or 30 years ago, when the current set of operating systems were first created?
Their answers go far beyond my idea, time management software with a graphical interface based on Space Invaders or Missile Command.
Richard A. Epstein traces the Old Court's treatment of federalism and economic liberty and shows how early 20th-century progressives prevailed eventually in undermining those principles, supplanting competitive markets with government-created cartels and monopolies.
Appellate Opinions Released March 1, 2006
The Wisconsin Court of Appeals released the following opinions today, both of which were recommended for publication:
Meyer v. The Laser Vision Institute, in which the Court explored what kinds of statement can violate Wis. Stat. section 100.18. Affirming the Circuit Court's dismissal of the complaint for failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted, the Court also concluded Meyer could not assert the equitable claims of unjust enrichment and "money had and received" because she had a contract with the Laser Vision Institute.
Frisch v. Henrichs, in which the Court addressed the scope of contempt and whether the Circuit Court justifiably imposed a $100,000 sanction for Henrichs' fraudulent failure to timely provide copies of his tax returns to his ex-wife in a divorce proceeding. Writing for the Court, Judge Nettesheim delightfully summarized the case:
Ronald J. Henrichs and Heidi Frisch, f/k/a Heidi Henrichs, divorced in 1993 after a ten-year marriage. The ensuing litigation -- a bitter tangle of alleged fraud, misrepresentation, unfairness, contempt, public policy arguments, overtrial and garden-variety buyer's remorse -- has worn on longer than the marriage that spawned it. In its painstaking attempt to undo this Gordian knot, the circuit court mistook remedial contempt for Alexander's sword. We commend the court for its efforts, but conclude nonetheless that its remedy cannot be sustained.