ContractsProf Blog

Editor: D. A. Jeremy Telman
Valparaiso Univ. Law School

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Tuesday, February 22, 2005

More taste, less job

An employee of a Miller Beer distributor who was fired after his picture appeared in the newspaper drinking a Bud Lite, is pursuing a potential lawsuit against his late employer.  Isac Aguero, a forklift operator for CJW, Inc., an independent distributor, was out partying one evening, and the next day his convivial portrait appeared in the Racine (Wisc.) Journal Times.  Trouble was, he was holding up a bottle of the brew made by archrival Anheuser-Busch.  He was fired the next day.  Aguero is exploring whether he can be fired for such off-duty activities.

Miller itself had no hand in the firing, but it may suffer from it, since Aguero has been on radio and television nationwide telling his story.   David Letterman is apparently interested.  An online poll by the Journal Times has Racine residents voting 59-6 against his firing.

Thanks to Marie Reilly (South Carolina) for the pointer.

February 22, 2005 in In the News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Labor unions and standards of living

From our colleagues at LaborProf Blog, this link to a study by the National Institute for Labor Relations Research on comparisons between real wages in "union shop" and "right to work" states. The study, called The Standard of Living in Right to Work States, and written by Barry Poulson, an economics professor at the University of Colorado, finds that workers in states with union shop laws have higher nominal wages than right to work states, but that when adjusted for cost-of-living and taxes, the right to work states come out on top.

February 22, 2005 in Recent Scholarship | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

News in brief

A Danish company wins a US$210 million contract to provide all the heavy equipment for a new cement plant in Nigeria.

The former manager of the Manchester City soccer club is waiting to hear whether an appeals court will uphold the £423,000 in damages he won from the club for breach of contract.

Canadian gold miner Northgate Minerals says it has started shutting down its Kerness Mine in British Columbia after workers rejected a tentative labor agreement.

The New York-New Jersey Port Authority is renegotiating its contract with its financially troubled ferry operator, reducing the operator's payments from $50,000 to approximately $10,000 a month.

The co-producers of the "Online Media Marketing and Advertising Awards" are in litigation after IAB sues MediaPost for breach of contract and infringement.

Egypt and Germany have reached agreement to jointly develop a €75 million wind-energy power station in the Zaafarana area of the Red Sea.

February 22, 2005 in In the News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Today in history—February 22

1512: Navigator Amerigo Vespucci, the first man to realize that Christopher Columbus had found new continents, not the East Indies, dies. They were named after him chiefly because his own writings were much more widely known than Columbus’s at the time.

1630: English colonists are introduced to an Indian delicacy they call "popped corn."

1732: George Washington is born at Pope’s Creek Plantation in Westmoreland County, Virginia. 1788: Philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer, whose chief goal in life is to depress the hell out of everyone, is born at Sztutowo, Poland.

1819: Spain cedes Florida to the United States, thus ensuring Bush’s victory over Gore in 2000. Many speculate that Karl Rove is somehow involved in the transaction.

1865: Tennessee adopts a new constitution that abolishes slavery in the state.

1876: Johns Hopkins University, whose law school frequently does very well in surveys of prestige, is founded at Baltimore.

1879: Frank Woolworth opens the first of his "five and dime" stores in Utica, New York.

1932: Edward Moore Kennedy (Virginia Law 1959) is born at Brookline, Massachusetts.

1959: The first Daytona 500, the "Super Bowl of Auto Racing," is held at Daytona International Speedway.

1965: U.S. Supreme Court Justice Felix Frankfurter dies at Washington, D.C.

1965: The Kingsmen’s "Jolly Green Giant" tops the charts. One office of Libby Foods, owner of the brand, sues for trade disparagement, but another sends free boxes of vegetables for the band to give away at concerts. He lives down there in his valley // The cat stands tall and green // Well, he ain't no prize, and there's no women his size, // And that's why the cat's so mean.

February 22, 2005 in Today in History | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, February 21, 2005

Top 5 Contracts Downloads, February 21

Ssrn_logo_2 From the Social Science Research Network, the most most down-loaded contracts-related papers for the 60 days ended February 21, 2005:

1.  Kevin A. Kordana & David H. Tabachnick (Virginia), Rawls and Contract Law, Last Revised: February 4, 2005

2.  Nathan Oman (Sidley Austin), Unity and Pluralism in Contract Law, Last Revised: February 4, 2005

3.  John K. Eason (Tulane), Private Motive and Perpetual Conditions in Charitable Naming Gifts: When Good Names Go, Last Revised: February 15, 2005

4.  Jeremy A. Blumenthal (Seton Hall), Law and the Emotions: The Problems of Affective Forecasting, Last Revised February 14, 2005

5.  Roy Kreitner (Tel Aviv), Fear of Contract, Last Revised: December 14, 2004

February 21, 2005 in Teaching | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Visitors wanted

The University of Idaho College of Law is looking for one or two visiting professors to cover the following courses during the 2005-2006 academic year--Contracts, Constitutional Law (Individual Liberties), Federal Courts, and possibly Property, Sales, Torts, Legal Accounting, and Jurisprudence.  Interested Faculty should contact D. Benjamin Beard, Professor of Law and Associate Dean, University of Idaho College of Law, 6th and Rayburn Streets, P.O. Box 442321, Moscow, Idaho 83844-2321.

February 21, 2005 in Miscellaneous | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

News in brief

An Australian survey shows that 80 percent of technical jobs advertised over the past two years have been for temporary contract hires, not permanent jobs.

Speaking of Australia, the battle is heating up in the life-or-death struggle for a $6 billion defense contract.

Faculty at the University of Central Florida are getting close to a new contract with the school, which will include 2 percent pay raises, a better sabbatical policy, and improved feedback to faculty on performance.

New Hampshire's little SiGARMS beats out Beretta, Smith & Wesson, Springfield Armory, Heckler & Koch, and Glock to win a $23.7 million contract to provide 65,000 handguns to the Department of Homeland Security.

February 21, 2005 in In the News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Rapper Puffy sued by publisher

Ballantine Publishing Group's Random House is suing Sean Combs (a/k/a "Puff Daddy," "Puffy," "P. Diddy") for a return of a $300,000 advance it paid for the autobiography he hasn't written.  The money was the first installment of the $1 million advance that Random House had promised in 1998 for the rapper's life story.

He never delivered, however, and apparently was also discovered talking to another publisher about the project.   Speculation is that Combs's celebrity has risen, as have the advances given to celebrity authors, and that he could demand a much bigger advance today.

February 21, 2005 in In the News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Employee or volunteer?

A professional golfer who thought he was getting paid for his work is suing the nonprofit foundation that thought he was volunteering.  Charles Foster says he's owed money by the Next Vision Foundation, which was founded and is run by Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick's sister, Ayanna.

Foster conducted a golf clinic as part of the Chris Williams Golf Outing in June 2004.  "Mr. Foster never had a contract with the Foundation," said Ms. Kilpatrick, who says she thought he had volunteered his time.  Foster seeks $25,000 plus attorneys' fees.

February 21, 2005 in In the News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Today in history--February 21

1431: Joan of Arc is first brought before the panel of University of Paris scholars who are charged by the English occupation government with finding some ground for executing her.  They will.

1791: John Mercer, the self-taught chemist who will start work as a bobbin weaver at age 9 but will go on to revolutionize the cotton industry, is born at Great Harwood, Lancashire.

1848: Former law student Karl Marx publishes his Communist Manifesto.

1925: The New Yorker magazine is published for the first time, so that little old ladies in Dubuque know what is happening in the Big Apple.

1936: Barbara Charlene Jordan (Boston College Law 1959), who will become the first African American Democrat to sit in the Texas Senate and later will be a professor at the University of Texas, is born at Houston.

1943: Record and film impresario David Lawrence Geffen, who will start in the mail room at the William Morris Agency but will later co-found Dreamworks SKG Studio, is born at Brooklyn, New York.

1947: Edwin Land demonstrates the first "instant camera," called the "Polaroid Land," at a meeting of New York's Optical Society of America.

1948: America's most popular sports organization, the National Association of Stock Car Automobile Racing, is founded at Daytona Beach, Florida.

1960: Cuban lawyer and caudillo Fidel Castro nationalizes all businesses in Cuba, which will ultimately result in the cutting off of trade with the U.S.

February 21, 2005 in Today in History | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Sunday, February 20, 2005

News in brief

The National Basketball Association and its players' union are still a long way apart as they move toward the expiration of the current contract in June.

Graduate students at the University of Iowa have reached a new contract with the Iowa City school.

English rugby fans are arguing about whether top players should be under contract to individual clubs or to the central league office.

An Indian man who "rented" a woman for a year to have his child and complained about her "breach of contract" finds himself arrested, along with her and the ashram manager who rented her.

Scottish city councils, who have been receiving asylum seekers under a contract with the British Home Office, say they won't take more unless they get an additional £10 million.

A labor union official who advised former Chelsea football player Adrian Mutu has been disqualified from the arbitral panel overseeing the contentious contract dispute in which the club is seeking at least 7 million in damages for Mutu's breach of contract by using cocaine.

February 20, 2005 in In the News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Professor Spotlight: Hazel Beh

Hazel_beh_1 This week's Professor Spotlight is on the University of Hawai'i's Hazel Glenn Beh, who took an unusual path to teaching contracts, but it happy she did.  As she likes to say, "Contracts no ka oi!" or, roughly, "Contracts is the best!"

Continue reading

February 20, 2005 in Contract Profs | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Today in history--February 20

1792: President Washington signs a bill creating the Post Office Department.

1848: Railroad tycoon Edward Henry Harriman is born to an Episcopal minister and his wife at Long Island, New York.

1872: Funded by wealthy New York merchants, the Metropolitan Museum of Art opens at 681 Fifth Avenue.

1872: Inventor Luther Childs Crowell of Cape Cod, Massachusetts, receives a patent for the flat-bottomed paper bag, the kind still in use today.

1893: Pierre Gustave Toutant Beauregard, president of the New Orleans, Jackson & Mississippi Railroad and manager of the famed Louisiana Lottery, dies at New Orleans.  Oh, and he fought in the American Civil War.

1924: Jeans maven Gloria Laura Vanderbilt is born, the daughter of a railroad heir and a Swiss-Chilean socialite, at New York City.  She will not design the jeans that bear her name, but they will sell anyway.

1943: U.S. movie studios agree to allow film censorship by President Roosevelt's Office of War Information.

1972: The man who invented modern journalism, Walter Winchell, dies in Los Angeles.  "I usually get my stuff from people who promised somebody else that they would keep it a secret."

1986: Pitcher Orel Hershiser of the Los Angeles Dodgers becomes the first baseball player to win a $1 million salary in arbitration.

1993: Ferruccio Lamborghini, the former Italian army mechanic who starting a business converting war-surplus equipment into farm tractors, and who went on to found his own luxury car company, dies at age 76.

February 20, 2005 in Today in History | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)