Thursday, June 16, 2005

More on Judge Boyle's prospects

This AP story via says - nobody is saying yet whether the Democrats in the Senate will filibuster to prevent a vote on the nomination of Judge Boyle to the Fourth Circuit.

Massey's Blankenship sues UMWA President and others for $300 M in Virginia

This Brian Peterson post has a link and some details on the $300 million defamation suit filed in Fairfax County by the CEO of Massey Energy against some of his antagonists from West Virginia.

One number that sticks out at me

Fairfax County went to McDonnell with 73.38% to Baril's 26.62%. I guess that transportation plan was not much of a hit up there.

Congressman Boucher as crusader for consumers' fair-use rights

This Wired News article describes Congressman Boucher's efforts to liberalize copyright laws.

How much whiskey, pork rinds, and cigarettes could you get for $30

JB concludes here that Baril and Petersen spent about $30 ahead for the votes they got in the primary.

At that rate, they should have at least carried the Town of Appalachia.

The new Part 3 of the Virginia Rules, implementing the single action

In today's mail came a hard copy of the new changes to the Virginia Rules of Court, implementing the single form of action, abolishing old Parts 2 and 3 of the Rules, and replacing them with the "new" Part 3, starting with the new Rule 3:1 which says - "There shall be one form of civil case, known as a civil action." (Compare FRCP 2 - "There shall be one form of action to be known as 'civil action.'")

These new rules are to take effect January 1, 2006, and do away with our favorite terms such as "motion for judgment," "grounds of defense," "subpoena in chancery," and "cross-bill," the latter of which always made me think of sort of some kind of cockeyed bird, perhaps a drunk pelican.

UPDATES: I am informed that indeed the cross-bill is a real bird, and separately, it appears that this post did nothing for the morale of Brian Patton as he studies Virginia procedure for the upcoming bar exam.

Marine life changing from boy to girl in Virginia's tidal waters

This post has links to reports of boy bass trying to become girl bass and a half-boy, half-girl crab, or something like that, all in and about the waters of the Commonwealth..

Fourth Circuit nominee Judge Boyle clears the Judiciary committee

How Appealing has this post with links, indicating that Fourth Circuit nominee Judge Boyle of North Carolina passed the Senate committee by a party line vote of 10-8.

Still more on Judge Wilkinson

SCOTUSblog has this profile on Judge Wilkinson as a candidate for nomination to the Supreme Court.

Circuit court clerk wins over circuit judge in Wise budget wrangling

I've still not yet figured out what's going on with the budget decision reported here in the Coalfield Progress, something to do with putting the secretaries under the budgetary control of the clerk of court in Wise County.

The economics of outside counsel for local government

Here it is reported of a town in Massachusetts: "For years, the town has had a standing contract with the Worcester firm, which is paid at an hourly rate of $115. Last year, legal costs topped $230,000." That sounds like a lot of work.

I was pleased to learn in the past few days that Karen Mullins' position as County Attorney in Wise has been made a full-time position. Good idea, and congratulations, Karen.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

The fugitive

The Republicans in Wise County are still out looking for the one guy in the City of Norton (as shown here) who voted for George Fitch in the Republican primary. (The vote was Kilgore 42, Fitch 1.) At last report, the search was focusing in on the Main Street area, on the west end of town.

It brings to mind a story told to me about how in the old days in Mississippi, there were no Republicans to speak of, but in the general election for president, every four years, the Republican candidate would get one vote. Then, when Eisenhower ran, he got two votes. "Throw that second one out," declared the Democrat election judge, "somehow the S.O.B. has voted twice."

More on Judge Wilkinson as a candidate to be endowed with deistic powers

This column suggests that Judge Wilkinson is a "middle of the road" conservative who might be more easily confirmed than some of the other best-known candidates.

The column begins with a quote from Wilkinson book about clerking for Justice Powell: "A Supreme Court judgeship is perhaps the closest our country has come to clothing mortals with deistic powers."

When do you possess a file that's on your computer

This post from considers yesterday's decision by the Virginia Court of Appeals in Kromer v. Com., in which the Court upheld the defendant's conviction for possession of child pornography.

On the politics of getting a vasectomy in the Commonwealth

In this irate post, the author describes his encounter with the realities of Va. Code § 54.1-2974, which requires counseling before a man can get himself fixed in Virginia.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

The people of Watauga Precinct have spoken

Here are the results for my home precinct in Washington County:

Kilgore 55, Fitch 2
Puckett 55, Byrne 5, Petersen and Baskerville 0
Bolling 32, Connaughton 16
McDonnell 43, Baril 8

Last year, 1,850 Wataugans voted in the presidential election.

For today's primary, about 120 showed up.

The City of Bristol, Virginia, voters have spoken

Here are the returns with 100% of the vote counted here in downtown Bristol:

Registered voters - 10,918

Kilgore 224, Fitch 12
Puckett 261, Petersen 11, Byrne 10, Baskerville 1
Bolling 165, Connaughton 51
McDonnell 134, Baril 78

Combined turnout - less than 5%

Who needs inner peace, any how

It is being reported in the New York Times and elsewhere: "Phil Jackson is returning to coach the Los Angeles Lakers, completing the most unlikely, unexpected and dizzying one-year turnabout in recent memory."

I just read The Last Season: A Team In Search of Its Soul, his account of the last year with the Lakers. It's tough to see how he and Kobe Bryant can reconnect after all that was written in that book.

Poll workers equaled voters at my precinct

At the Watauga Elementary School this morning, there were three other voters, me, and I believe 4 poll workers - during the time that I was there. I couldn't say whether there were others who snuck in before or afterwards.

Is this another commentary on the elections?

HealthLawProf Blog ahs this post which says: "The NIH has set forth a study indicating that more than fifty percent of the American population will develop a mental illness during their lives."

Griffith confirmed, 73-24

This AP story via Yahoo indicates that Thomas Griffith was confirmed to the D.C. Circuit seat that Miguel Estrada did not get, and by a vote of 73-24.

Patti Church nominated for another run for Commonwealth's attorney in Lee County

The Kingsport paper reports here that the Lee County Democrats have again nominated Ms. Church, who lost last time by less than 200 votes.

Ms. Church still likes to tease me about how I tried to manipulate the jury in a case where my grandmother came to watch part of the trial. I was pleased but a little bit frightened when Grandma was there - anything was possible.

Monday, June 13, 2005

They don't call it Cocke County for nothing

Today's big story from south of State Street: Tenn. Police Arrest 144 at Cockfight.

The law professor blogger census

According to this census of law professor bloggers, out of 103 listed, none are from William & Mary, W&L, U.Va., or Appalachian.

On Magistrate Judge Lauck

The Richmond paper has this profile of M. Hannah Lauck, the new magistrate judge in the E.D. Va. at Richmond.

Self-defense as a public policy that supports a wrongful discharge claim in WV

In At will employment: Should there be a public policy exception for gun nuts?, Professor Bainbridge takes on the case of the West Virginia convenience employee who when fired for resisting a robbery claimed the discharge was in violation of the state's public policy in favor of the right to self-defense.

The Kentucky blawger story

Here via is a collection of links on the matter of Ben Cowgill, the ethics blawger in KY, who is trying to convince the authorities in that Commonwealth that he should not have to pay a $50 advertising fee for every post.

Another reason to put every federal court opinion on the Internet

How Appealing links here to this Washington Times article that says the new Democratic strategy for dealing with nominees they don't like is to keep asking for more information, and thus they keep trying to get the "unpublished" works of Judge Boyle, the N.C. district court judge nominated to the Fourth Circuit.

Now, in the W.D. Va., you can get at all the written opinions in a flash.

Nominee who didn't pay bar dues likely to be confirmed

How Appealing links here to this news story from Utah that says Thomas Griffith is expected to be confirmed to the D.C. Circuit, even though he let his law license lapse a couple of times for not paying dues.

Sunday, June 12, 2005

On going to college to study for NASCAR

The CSM has this article on college courses focusing on NASCAR technology topics.

Should Virginia hold statewide elections in presidential election years?

Louisiana is considering moving its governor's election to coincide with the presidential elections, as a cost-cutting move. This article explains: "Louisiana is one of six states that do not hold the governor's race to coincide with the presidential race. The others are Alabama, Maryland, Mississippi, New Jersey and Virginia."

The Commonwealth's unruly barbecue tradition

Mother Earth News reports here: "in the late 1600s, the founding fathers of Virginia felt constrained to pass a law banning the discharge of firearms at barbecues."

On lawyer advertising

Regarding the new Riverside office building in Richmond, the Times-Dispatch reports here: "The Troutman Sanders name will go over the front door -- and become part of the Richmond skyline when the name is added to the building top. And yes, it will be lighted during the holidays."

The story brought to mind the recent discussion by Professor Bainbridge and others of the nature of lawyer advertising (mostly in connection with whether blawgs are lawyer ads). Bainbridge wrote: "self-promotion = advertising."

UPDATE: By the way, I certainly don't agree with the view that all blogs all the time are advertising. To borrow a phrase from Crimlaw, this blog is a hobby, mostly for the amusement of myself and a few friends.

Hokie in the hunt in today's Nationwide Tour event

Brendon de Jonge, a 2003 Virginia Tech graduate, started T4 and is still in the top ten in today's Nationwide Tour event in Glenview, IL. de Jonge had one top ten finish last year as a rookie.

Public confidence in newspapers hits all-time low

E&P reports here that the latest from Gallup shows public confidence in newspapers is at an all-time low.

They've got everything but spell-check

Checking the fancy website (by local standards) for my home county, I see the headline, "County of Washington, Virgina."