Archive for June, 2011


June 30th, 2011 Comments off

I’m using the WordPress software for this blog. This is my first experience with blog software and I’m impressed with the convenience. I noticed today that the software created a new page for the older entries automatically. I was thinking that at some point I would have to manually move older entries to a different page, but it happened by itself. It’s magic.

Categories: General Observations Tags:

Today’s Musical Selection …

June 30th, 2011 Comments off

… is Ralph Vaughan Williams’ Fantasia on a Theme by Thomas Tallis. A beautiful piece with a haunting theme.

(Edit: Corrected spelling error.)


Categories: General Observations Tags:

Back In The Blog Business

June 29th, 2011 Comments off

I’m back from my trip to Chicago for family and personal business. Return flight was delayed 4 hours: the plane was coming from Providence, Rhode Island and was delayed due to bad weather and “air traffic control.”

People ask me for legal advice all the time. But when I’m in Illinois I often don’t know the answer as there are lots of differences in state law, especially in different regions of the U.S.

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U.S. Supreme Court Rules in Favor of Wal-mart in Employment Class-Action Case

June 21st, 2011 Comments off

An interesting change in the law for federal court class-action cases. This will certainly impact that small group of high profile attorneys who make a huge profit from these cases. Whether it has any real impact for business or employees remains to be seen.

A New Hurdle for Suits Brought on Behalf of Many –

Categories: Legal News Tags:

BlackBerry vs. iPhone

June 20th, 2011 Comments off

With my new iPhone in service for about 24 hours, I thought I’d share my impressions of how it compares to my old BlackBerry. This iPhone is my first iOS device and I am impressed with the interface refinements. The user interface is a marked improvement over my 2 year old BlackBerry in most ways. It is easier to navigate to where you want to go and easier to access most settings. But once you figure out the BlackBerry, it has more options to customize and adjust. With the Apple device it is very easy to do things the way Apple intended, but very difficult to do things differently. Apple simplicity sometimes means a lack of options. What was really cool in setting up the iPhone was that I could import e-mail settings and Web bookmarks from my Mac on the first sync. This made the iPhone setup a snap.

The Blackberry has the clear advantages of superior battery life, interchangeable batteries and a real keyboard. These also come at a price: with the keyboard you have a smaller display (or a bulky slider) and the interchangeable battery requires additional space and an inelegant removable back. If the iPhone was available with a physical keyboard I would have given that serious consideration.

E-mail has been BlackBerry’s strong suit for years. There are some aspects of BlackBerry e-mail that work better and some things on the iPhone e-mail that work better. The BlackBerry “push” of e-mail is still superior, and if you need instant notification of incoming e-mail on your mobile device there is no substitute.

The iPhone Web browser is a vast improvement over the BlackBerry. It is faster, easier to use and read, and far more compatible with most Web sites. This was the killer feature for me.

Finally I must mention user-installed applications or “apps.” For many people this is the killer feature for the iPhone but for me it is not very important. I am much more concerned with the core functions. I’m not looking to load up my smart phone with a ton of games or little gimmicky applications. I do understand that some people need some third-party or custom applications and there is obviously a huge market here. BlackBerry does have some useful applications including maps, a lost phone location & disabling function, etc. The better selection of “apps” will be important to some, and unimportant to others.

I have no experience with Android other than messing with it for a few minutes in various stores. The Web browser looked good and it is the only smart phone that supports Flash (which is a mixed blessing). I eliminated it as an option because it doesn’t support easy synchronization with your computer’s calendar and address books (you must go through Google Gmail).

Bottom line is that there is no clear winner. I prefer the iPhone for what I need now, and the better Web browser is the deciding factor. Others may be better served by BlackBerry or Android. It is wonderful to have some choices.

Categories: General Observations Tags:

Friendship of Justice and Magnate Puts Focus on Ethics –

June 19th, 2011 Comments off

This is not the first time that Justice Thomas’ ethics have caused some concern. Regardless of what one thinks of the Justice’s opinions or politics, you have to be concerned when a judge accepts valuable gifts from parties who are filing amicus briefs with the court.

Friendship of Justice and Magnate Puts Focus on Ethics –

Categories: Legal News Tags:

2 Top Lawyers Lost to Obama in Libya War Policy Debate –

June 18th, 2011 2 comments

The issue here is whether the President took a short cut in the proper procedure to take military action against Libya. The more fundamental question is the application of the provision of the Constitution that reserved the right to Congress to declare war. Is the use of force in Libya “a declaration of war?”

2 Top Lawyers Lost to Obama in Libya War Policy Debate –

(Edit on 6/19/11: replace “test” comment with reference to the legal issues.)


Categories: Legal News Tags:

YOU Are The Audience

June 18th, 2011 Comments off

My hope with this blog is to make it an interactive forum for the discussion of a wide variety of issues. The other day someone paid me the compliment that I was an intelligent person who knew about a lot of things. I do think about a wide variety of things and would like to have a discussion here about all sorts of things. Let me know with your comments what you would like to read about and discuss.

For example, while riding my bicycle yesterday I was thinking about how Truman became the person with the power to use an atomic bomb. (Actually it should be called a nuclear fission bomb.) Such a weapon killed hundreds of thousands of people in a few seconds. Truman became the U.S. President more or less by accident and yet he was granted this power of life and death. Well, such power in the hands of a single person or a handful of people has been a characteristic of society since the beginning of written history, but I find it rather unsettling that our society still has this legal and political organization with the single person in charge. It was certainly NOT the intent of the writers of the U.S. Constitution to have a strong central leader.

Categories: General Observations Tags:

Technology Can Be Frustrating

June 15th, 2011 Comments off

I finally got my BlackBerry to receive and send e-mail through the new e-mail service included with the domain. A very long and frustrating battle with trying to get the right configuration settings accepted by the BlackBerry. Even with my in-depth computer knowledge it was a a struggle. It’s hard to know how people without a lot of technology expertise get this stuff done. I guess they hire someone or do without.

Categories: Site News Tags:

It Isn’t Always Glamorous

June 14th, 2011 Comments off

Today I am reviewing client documents in preparation for a document production. It is this somewhat dull but necessary preparation work that makes for a strong presentation in the courtroom. The practice of law isn’t always glamorous, contrary to the portrayal in the media. Most of the time it is tedious preparation.

Categories: General Observations Tags: