Blogs worth noting
[updated and bumped]
Blog review #1
This post is a place to hold reviews of certain blogs. There may be older/better/more interesting blog, but I like the assignment: investigate a blog, consider it, weigh it, and blog about it. With an arbitrary ranking on a scale from 12 to W.
Magic Cookie (see, it pays to comment). A prelaw blog, tagging itself as "prelaw stories with a healthy dose of nonsense." The proprietor and main contributor, Chickenmagazine is a software-developer turned 1L heading to HLS. It's not uncommon to see Harvard student bloggers, see the previous Most Famous HLS student blogger (not that he's less known, but he's dealing with summertime and NYC and, perhaps, the Bar exam now), but I don't remember the last time I saw a blogger who hadn't even arrived there. Good luck!
The blog itself has lots of book reviews, musings on words, and reflections on entering law school. Godspeed, chickenmagazine.
Arbitrary ranking: M, although a vote of 17 was also considered.
Kip Esquire. A stitch in time saves nine, but haste makes waste. An excellent pairing of opposed aphorisms; I like, "Absence makes the heart grow fonder, but familiarity breeds contempt." Kip Esq. is a libertarian (he says so himself), and in his own words is "a lawyer who doesn't practice, an investment banker who does no deals, an academic who doesn't teach, and a policy wonk who belongs to no think tank. He's 38 and lives in NYC." I like the threaded nature of the posts; each one refers to the previous ones in its own category. A feature of powerblogs, I surmise. He also makes his blog categories easily searchable via a list on the right hand side; this is an excellent idea, again possibly a powerline thing, and I've seen such categorizing done slightly less well on, for example, Evan's blog and Jeremy's weblog. This is the best way to do it: on the front page, no-clicks to get to it, simple and clear descriptions. Good one.
I like Kip's insightful and occasionally biting posts on gay rights; his post here fairly drips with scorn for CA Atty. Gen. Bill Lockyer, and makes the excellent point, "Which do you think gays would prefer -- a prompt 'no' or a delayed 'yes'?" This makes quick work of the usual and utterly tired tripe about a prompt, but not necessarily favorable, response being owed. Thanks for the speedy service, too bad you screwed me, have a nice day? I think not.
I think Kip's post on the O'Connor resignation aftermath is fascinating. I can't believe anyone was stupid enough to suggest that O'Connor can't decide when she wants to step down (time of her choosing, when the Court's not in session - as has become standard practice) on the ground that it "strips the President of his power to make a recess appointment." The main reason this is idiocy is that her timing and phrasing (I step down, as soon as my replacement is confirmed) follows her duties to the Court and the country, and the President still _can_ make a recess appointment. He just can't do it until there's a vacancy to fill, and he apparently won't have a vacancy while the Senate is not in session. He doesn't lack the _power_, he's going to lack the _opportunity_. Kip's right, and the person who suggested it is, in my opinion, foolish. Good post, Kip, and I'll be checking back.
Arbitrary ranking: Q.
White Collar Crime Prof Blog (is it one adjective and four nouns? or one noun and four adjectives?). In any case, it's Peter J. Hanning and Ellen S. Podger's blawg, one of the members of the Law Prof Blog Network (I prefer the term Prawf, for lAW PR[o]F, but I suppose one could be too cutesy, couldn't one?), and they have a neat summary of the significant cases in which O'Connor's participation, and thus departure, are of note to White Collar Criminal Law afficionados. Court-watching is ever so much fun to us Judiciary Groupies, and so it's nice that Peter and Ellen are helping out with commentary that'll give us outsiders and observers more to chew on.
Arbitrary ranking: B+.
Crime and Federalism, starring Mike, Norm, and a parade of horribles. Court news and opinions are their bread and butter; federalism (meaning limited federal power, and preserving some state powers- like, the ones that are supposed to be in this our federal system) and crime are the subjects. This blog is always on the ball, thanks to the rapid-response efforts of the "recent law school graduate, and experienced criminal defense/civil rights attorney" (the aforementioned Mike and Norm) who co-blog at C & F.
Crime and Federalism has a great variety: recent decisions and why they matter; other legal developments in the news; discussions of judicial philosophy (one of my favorite topics, as you may gather); and occasionally, posts from the field with absolutely grabby titles (see, e.g. Is Masturbation relevant).
Mike and Norm are nice fellows, as we know from their generous and thoughtful comments to your host, and I look forward to reading them in the future.
Arbitrary ranking: C and F.
Ninomania. A fellow blogspotter. I stole his blawg title to make a point, in Ninomania this isn't. Ninomania is Prof. David Wagner's blog, out of the Regent Univ. School of Law, but it "does not reflect the views of Justice Scalia, who doesn't know me from Adam, or of Regent University, which does but is not such a schlemiel as to take responsibility for my views. " Funny stuff.
While I can't, as I may have indicated, sign onto the Ninomania agenda (whatever it might be... and can you imagine it not being sinister? :) ), I do appreciate the clever and informed commentary. See, for example, Kelo: O'Connormania, for an implicit admission that "Our Hero" is sometimes on the wrong side of a decision, and a paean to O'Connor's reasoning in that case, not to mention Thomas', which I have admired as well.
David's a bit of a non-liberal, but I'm sure that it would still be pleasant to chat with him; he's clearly a thoughtful guy. So long as he doesn't call me a member of the Death-Left, of course. What is that, anyway? I don't support capital punishment in practice at all, and very seldom even in theory; I think abortions should be disfavored- or at least not used instead of the other forms of contraception, which should be freely available and universally taught and encouraged in the public schools, starting early, at... well, after conception, anyway. Or rather, before it. You know what I mean (I hope). But, personally, I think the morning-after pill isn't abortion. Not even close. Contraception includes, in my mind, preventing implantation in the uterine wall. If you disagree with me on that... are you a doctor? Or are we talking pure faith here?
Arbitrary ranking: N.
To be posted as time permits:
Reviews of the other bloggers who have left comments.
[note: arbitrary really means it. If I were an administrative agency, I would _flunk_ APA § 706(2) review here.]