October 15, 2005
Has Miers Funked the Writing Portion of the Confirmation Test?
Charles Babingtion's article in the Saturday Washington Post poses the following question:
Is Miers at risk of flunking the writing portion of the Supreme Court confirmation test?
Many nomination opponents say, 'Yes." The flap is over Miers's correspondence with President Bush back when the President was Governor of Texas. The correspondence has become fodder for late night talk show hosts, so much so that this nominee' s treatment is reminscent of the treatment the media gave Clarance Thomas during his confirmation proceedings.
We all know how the Thomas confirmation hearings went. Can you imagine Senator Joseph Biden waving one of Miers's gushy note cards to then Governor Bush in front of the cameras while asking the nominee "is this what the American public wants in a Supreme Court justice?" At least Miers can respond that the content was not plagerized.
Read all about it at Miers Hit on Letters and the Law: Writings Both Personal and Official Have Critics Poking Fun (Washington Post, October 15, 2005). The correspondence, including a link to some of the actual materials, was the subject of an earlier post on this blog.
Study Finds Democrats Outnumber Republicans 8:1 in Elite Law School Faculties
Not exactly shocking news. TaxProf Blog has the details.
A Quick Look at the Communicate or Die Blog
Communicate or Die's mission is "to build a network of passionate individuals who are serious about discussing and developing solutions that allow unions to realize the full potential of Internet technology."
In the blog's first post, Idle Pens Are Not Mightier Than Swords, (March 29, 2005), Steve Dondley, Pioneer Valley Central Labor Council, AFL-CIO, wrote
Most of us recognize that the American labor movement is not in a healthy state. The recent, widespread rumblings for reform makes clear that there is general agreement that we cannot afford to let our condition fester much longer. The past few months have been a time of introspection for labor leaders, a time to ask ourselves what unhealthy behaviors and unfortunate setbacks got us here to begin with. Then, once this period of self-reflection is over, we must change---or die.
The blog is probably the only publication that monitors labor's web communications. It would be more helpful if the blog maintained a directory of web publications.
October 14, 2005
Proposed Budget Cuts Could Cripple 2010 Census
The Washington Post (D'Vera Chon) is reporting that a pending Senate Bill cutting $17 in Census Bureau funding could imperil the Bureau's plans for the 2010 Census.
"Census data. We don't need no census data."
CBO Report on Federal Deficits
New CBO Report: Long-Term Economic Effects of Chronically Large Federal Deficits
Iraqi Constitution Presented to Voters Tomorrow
Here is the Full Text of the draft Iraqi Constitution (AP translation)
(This text will be updated with recently announced amendments)
See also Emily Messner's Washington Post blog post, The Facts: The Iraq Constitution
The New Campaign Finance Sourcebook from Brookings
Anthony Corrado, Thomas Mann, Daniel Ortiz and Trevor Potter
Brookings Institution Press 2005
Paper Text, 0-8157-0005-9, $26.95
Book Description: The New Campaign Finance Sourcebook has been integrated with the award-winning and frequently visited Brookings website to provide a timely, interactive tool for policymakers, journalists, and scholars. Four of the country’s leading experts on campaign finance reform have contributed original essays on important facets of finance law and administration. The essays are accompanied by a list of corresponding documents available on the website.
The book offers a thorough overview and analysis of this highly controversial issue, including the history of campaign finance regulation and the current state of the law, current practices and trends in the flow of money, the constitutional debate, the use of political party money, issue advocacy, public financing of presidential elections, implementing and enforcing campaign finance laws, and campaigning on the internet. The authors conclude with a broad overview of alternative approaches to reform.
The related website features sidebars that correspond to the book’s chapters as well as associated documents. The site is frequently updated with recent developments in campaign finance regulation and analyses of current court cases and administrative decisions. There are also links to advisory opinions from the Federal Elections Commission, nonprofit organizations that study reform, and related publications.
John Dean on Internet Research (Who next, Bono?)
John W. Dean, former counsel to President Nixon, opines on using blogs, etc. in Doing Legal, Political, and Historical Research for Findlaw's Modern Practice. Who next, Bono?
In discussing Wikipedia, he writes:
When I read the Wikipedia entry for myself, for example, I found it falsely states that in 1995, I admitted that my book Blind Ambition was ghost-written. Not only did I never make such an admission, but the book was not, in fact, ghost-written. Obviously, I could make a submission to Wikipedia to correct this misinformation, but so far, I've held off, for I am more curious to see if the open sourcing is self-correcting, than I am concerned about the error.
Job Opening: Part-Time Position for Law Firm Librarian, Bethesda
Pasternak & Fidis, a mid-sized law firm in Bethesda, is currently seeking a part-time law librarian. We are looking for someone who is pursuing a degree in Library Science who is interested in law librarianship. The position would provide excellent opportunities for gaining experience in creating and maintaining a special library or information center.
• Responsible for the firm's acquisitions and the physical processing of hard copy additions to the legal collection.
• Ensures that law collection is complete and up to date in both the reference collection and the core legal collection. This requires acquisitions coordination and planning with legal publishers so that hard copies, software updates and data base access changes revise the collection without omissions or duplications.
• Maintains acquisition records that reflect materials ordered and when they are received.
• Creates subscription lists to ensure that renewals are accomplished without lapses in coverage.
• Performs computer assisted legal research for attorneys and legal staff.
• Library Orientation/Training of New P&F employees.
• Maintains a Book/Publication/Library Budget.
• Updates Information on Firm Intranet.
• Strong organizational skills.
• Excellent communication and interpersonal skills.
• Knowledge of MSWord, MSAccess, and MSExcel, and FrontPage.
• Library experience, preferably in a special library environment. • Academic background in law.
Hours per week: 10-15
Please apply by submitting a cover letter and resume to Mary Jane Tiedeman, email@example.com
October 13, 2005
Clearinghouse of Law Firm Newsletters
In preparation for a CLE I am teaching on advanced internet searching for lawyers I wanted to include a few tips on free internet legal research resources. Looking through Robert J. Ambrogi’s excellent The Best (And Worst) Legal Sites on the Web it occurred to me that law firm newsletters would be a good source of current events information in specific practice areas. Now if I could just find a site that collected and organized them. After a quick post to law-lib I discovered the following meta sites for finding law firm newsletters:
Mondaq aims to be a comprehensive resource of professionals’ knowledge and expertise. Focuses on large accounting and law firms with major international firms included. Users can search or browse by author, country or topic. http://www.mondaq.com/
SurfWax’s news accumulator provides access to law firm publications and newsletters and arranges them by subject area. http://news.surfwax.com/law/
VenuLex provides online legal information from leading law firms to business and professional members. VenuLex members have access to constantly updated high quality legal information. The VenuLex database can be searched by legal topic or jurisdiction - it includes legal explanations, updates, alerts and forms regarding all types of legal and regulatory issues that members face on a regular basis. Information on VenuLex is current, accurate, and relevant. http://www.venulex.com/ (description from the VenuLex site)
Knowledge Mosaic currently maintains three topical databases of law firm memos of the leading American Lawyer 100 and 200 firms. The databases cover the practice areas of SEC corporate and securities, FCC communications, and FERC energy. The SEC related data base contains nearly 6000 law firm memos searchable by topics such as Proxy Reporting, Hedge Funds, and Broker-Dealers. The communications database contains over 2000 memos, searchable by FCC related topic. Energy Mosaic, currently maintains nearly 1000 memos covering FERC topics. (description from e-mail received from sales rep who offered a generous trial period) http://www.knowledgemosaic.com/
Lee Peoples, Oklahoma City University Law Library
Blackboard and WebCT Announce Agreement to Merge
Here's the Press Release.
Bush-Miers Correspondence Available
The Bush-Miers Texas letters reveals a history of a mutual admiration The letters were among more than 2,000 pages of documents released this week by the Texas State Library and Archives Commission.The Smoking Gun has published some of the letters.
Harry A. Blackmun Papers at LC
From the Library of Congress:
"In anticipation of high research demand, the Manuscript Reading Room of the Library of Congress has made available online selected materials from the papers of Harry Andrew Blackmun (1908-1999). This site describes the collection in detail, provides a finding aid for the collection, reprints
the press release from the opening of the collection, and offers a selective but detailed bibliography."
"Of interest to researchers and academics, the site includes 38 hours of oral history video interviews and the transcript of this oral history project. The 510-page transcript is only available as JPEG images of the original print manuscript (not text or PDF), and the interview videos are similarly copy-protected in their Real Audio file format. Small samples from the Blackmun Papers collection are
available, including pages from draft opinions and handwritten notes from case files. These samples are intended to highlight the collection, and are not provided for the benefit of research via this webpage."
Ron Jones, University of Cincinnati Law Library
2005-2006 United States Government Manual
The 2005-2006 edition of the United States Government Manual is now available on GPO Access at http://www.gpoaccess.gov/gmanual/index.html. As the official handbook of the Federal Government, the United States Government Manual provides comprehensive information on the agencies of the legislative, judicial, and executive branches. It also includes information on quasi-official agencies; international organizations in which the United States participates; and boards, commissions, and committees.
Ron Jones, Unv Cin Law Lib
OSHA's Lost Workday Injury and Illness Database, 1996-2002
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has for several years tracked lost work day injury and illness (LWDII) rates at about 80,000 worksites in selected high-hazard industries across the country. After years of litigation with OSHA, the New York Times was able to win release of LWII. The Memory Hole is making LWDII available.
The question now is, "who is the most dangerous employer?
Job Opening: Head of Collection Management, Law Library, University at Buffalo, State University of New York
Position/Academic Rank: Head of Collection Management, Law Library (Associate Librarian
- Provide leadership in the development, implementation, maintenance and review of collection development policies and practices, including policies on selection, retention, weeding, replacement of missing materials, and evaluation of gifts.
- Advise the Director of the Law Library in assessing the collection's strengths and weaknesses in all formats within the scope of the library's collection development policy.
- Assist the Director of the Law Library in allocating funds and managing budget expenditures.
- Coordinate the activities of the librarians involved in the selection process.
- Review, analyze, and select new and existing print and electronic resources.
- Identify, evaluate and recommend cancellations and withdrawals of library materials.
- Work closely with faculty to monitor research and curricular developments.
- Consult with faculty to ensure that the library's collection development efforts support the law school curriculum and faculty research interests.
- Play a key role in the University Libraries' implementation of the Aleph integrated library system.
- Collaborate in implementing off-site storage of law library materials and in acquiring access to electronic resources, including evaluation of licensing agreements, assessment of compatibility with the University Libraries' and the Law School's systems, and setting up and maintaining electronic user awareness tools.
- Function as liaison with vendor sales representatives.
- Manage all aspects of the Law Library's acquisitions functions, including ordering, receiving, and claiming materials; managing approval plans and blanket orders; and processing invoices.
- Supervise three acquisitions clerks and one student assistant.
- Work with University Libraries' Central Technical Services and Electronic Resources Council on acquisition of interdisciplinary electronic resources.
- Provide reference services to students and faculty at least two hours each week and as part of the weekend reference rotation.
- Opportunities for participation in first year legal research and writing instruction or other teaching opportunities may be available depending on the candidate's interest and qualifications.
Reporting and Governance
- Report to the Director of the Law Library
- With the Director and other law librarians, establish policies and implement changes to improve the overall service of the Law Library.
- Represent the Law Library on Law School, University Libraries, and University-wide committees as appropriate.
- Actively participate in local, regional, and national professional organizations such as AALL and ALLUNY.
Required: MLS from an ALA-accredited institution or foreign equivalent; JD from an ABA-accredited institution or foreign equivalent; familiarity with current trends in legal publishing, education, and research. Significant experience in budget management and some supervisory experience are required. Familiarity with print and electronic resources, knowledge of the U.S. legal information market, substantial legal research skills, and experience with electronic information technology are required. Candidates must exhibit strong interpersonal, oral, and written communication skills, and must be able to develop productive working relationships and work as an effective team member, as well as independently. This is a tenure track position. Ability to produce scholarly work of publishable quality is essential. Information on tenure standards for university librarians is available at http://libweb.lib.buffalo.edu/sw/committees/apt/faculty_personnel.htm. Members of the Law Library staff must demonstrate a high level of commitment to the professional values of service, teamwork, initiative, and creativity in all aspects of their work.
Preferred: Minimum four years professional experience in related law library work strongly preferred. Familiarity with foreign and international vendors is desirable. Experience with migration from one integrated library automation system to another (especially experience with the Aleph integrated library automation system) is desirable. Demonstrated teaching ability and a record of scholarship are desirable.
Salary: Senior Assistant Librarian, $39,000 or higher, competitive and depending on experience and qualifications; Associate Librarian, $45,000 or higher, competitive and depending on experience and qualifications.
Available: Immediately. Applications will continue to be accepted until the position is filled.
Applicants should send a letter of application, curriculum vitae, and the names, addresses, and telephone numbers of three references to:
Human Resources Officer
University at Buffalo, The State University of New York
432 Capen Hall
Buffalo, NY 14260
Register Now for the Society for Scholarly Publishing's Fall Seminars November 7-8, 2005
Publishers and publishing services vendors, librarians, scholars and others interested in the business environment of scholarly publishing are welcome at the SSP 2005 Fall Seminar Series November 7-8, Philadelphia and Washington, DC. Please note SSP offers a reduced membership rate for librarians.
November 7: The ROI of Discoverability: If They Can't Find It, They Won't Use It and Can't Buy It Investing in discoverability pays off. Discoverability is affected by the content itself and also by the titles and descriptions you assign to it, from first creation through final dissemination. Explore it from the point of view of the creators and the users of information, the librarians and search engines that help them both, and the advertisers that underwrite it.
November 8: Embracing Technology and Process Changes to Successfully Transform a Scholarly Publisher
Understanding how to balance the significant gains associated with new technology with the real costs - both human and financial - often linked with widespread change can be daunting to publishers. Explore a variety of book and journal technologies, the challenges some publishers have faced when implementing them, how they overcame them, the process changes that worked, as well as where the industry is headed next from a technology perspective.
November 7: Institutional Repositories: Opportunity or Threat
Will institutional repositories (IRs) become the backbone of the Open Access movement? Learn why libraries are building Institutional Repositories and explore how publishers view repositories and how we can all work together - or is it a face-off? When repositories are networked into Google Scholar, what will happen to publishing as we know it?
November 8: Copyright: Developments at the Core of Your Business
Explore broad issues pertaining to copyright assignment and your organization's philosophy, focusing on policy, effects on discourse and communication, and your business. Hear the latest on practical issues such as interlibrary loan, fair use, digital rights management, versioning, and access.
Visit the SSP website for more information at www.sspnet.org
Contact MJ Genualdi with questions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
October 12, 2005
Does the Miers Nomination Have a Pulse?
The Washington Times is reporting that "27 Republican senators -- almost half of his party's members in the chamber -- have publicly expressed specific doubts about Miss Miers or said they must withhold any support whatsoever for her nomination until after the hearings."
Meanwhile, writing for Slate, John Dickerson, describes the rift the Miers nomination has created in the right wing ranks of the Republican Party as boiling down to one question: "Is the nominee qualified because of her religious faith, or unqualified by her lack of intellectual heft?"
Has Bush done what no Democrat has been able to do so far, split the Republican Right?
South Asia Quake Resources
The team that created the TsunamiHelp blog last December has now launched South Asia Quake Help Blog which is focused on this weekend's disastrous earthquake in Pakistan and India.
Thanks to Andy Carvin, Program Director, EDC Center for Media & Community, for the tip (via the Digital Divide Network list).
Additional frequently updated resources include:
WikiNews coverage, which includes a list of aid agencies accepting donations
Reminder: Comments on GPO Selection Mechanisms Briefing Papers Due by October 31
Comment on the GPO's briefing papers on selection mechanism are due Monday, October 31, 2005. All comments should be directed to email@example.com.
"Depository Selection: History and Current Practice" is provided as background information for the other two papers. It provides an overview of the item number process in its current form.
"Depository Selection Mechanisms: New Model for the Selection of Online Titles" proposes new mechanisms for the selection of online titles.
"Depository Selection Mechanisms: New Model for the Selection of Tangible Publications" proposes new mechanisms to support a more flexible model for selection and distribution of tangible publications.
All three papers are available for review at http://www.access.gpo.gov/su_docs/fdlp/selection/index.html along with links to related information.