Friday, June 22, 2007

a Posner commentary on a complaint

From a June 22 opinion written by Judge Richard A. Posner:

"The complaint is a hideous sprawling mess, 40 pages in length with 221
paragraphs of allegations.  We have found it difficult and in many instances
impossible to ascertain the nature of the charges.  It would have been better
had the defendants deferred their motion, and the district judge his ruling,
until either the defendants served contention interrogatories designed to
smoke out what exactly the plaintiffs are charging, or better, because
quicker and cheaper, the judge told the plaintiffs to specify the acts of the
defendants that they are complaining about so that he could decide how much
of the complaint was preempted.  Still, the defendants can hardly be blamed
for wanting to strangle the monster in its crib."

In re: Ocwen Loan Servicing, LLC, No. 06-3132 (7th Cir.), .

hat tip:  Chris Wren, Assistant Attorney General, Criminal Appeals Unit, Wisconsin Department of Justice


June 22, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)


"A good catchword can obscure analysis for fifty years."

- Wendell L. Willkie


June 22, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, June 21, 2007

the negative effects of law school

The online Wall Street Journal lawblog recently reported on the Sheldon/Krieger piece on the negative effects of law school at  The comments about the law school experience are pretty revealing.

hat tip:  Sharon Blackburn, librarian extraordinaire, Texas Tech University School of Law


June 21, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

the most praised generation of students ever

"The Most Praised Generation Goes to Work: Uber-stroked kids are reaching adulthood -- and now their bosses (and spouses) have to deal with them."

That's the title of an article that appeared in the Wall Street Journal on April 20, 2007.  You can access it at:

If you wade through it, you will eventually come to some comments by attorneys.  The article doesn't say what happens when this generation, over-praised throughout life and now apparently at some law firms, meets the reality of our adversarial judicial system.  In court, usually someone loses and someone wins.  Clients and judges don't give A's for effort.

hat tip:  Professor Linda Ryan


June 20, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

blog editors at conference

New_cameraboston_and_denver_038 Here are your blog editors at the Denver Zoo after a successful and engaging 2 1/2 days at the ALWD conference.  That's Sue on the left, then Coleen, then Nancy.


June 19, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

recommended reading

Click here to link to the recent article by Ken Sheldon and Larry Krieger, reporting on their study of two law schools and how a focus on the overall well-being of law students seems to lead to better learning results, including better bar passage rates.  Although they'd be the first to agree there's need for further study, there's much food for thought here.  And there are many places where legal writing professors will shake their heads in agreement.

June 19, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

RFP, Global Legal Skills III

Prof. Mark Wojcik, at the John Marshall Law School in Chicago, sends the following announcement:

Fldmfrente The third Global Legal Skills Conference will be held February 29 and March 1, 2008, in Monterrey Mexico, hosted by the Facultad Libre de Derecho de Monterrey. Proposals for possible presentations at the conference will be accepted until October 10, 2007.

The Global Legal Skills Conference - held the first two times at The John Marshall Law School in Chicago - focuses on international legal education and specifically the needs of lawyers and law students who speak English as a second language. Additional topics covered at the conference include advocacy skills, legal research, creating appropriate materials and assignments, cross-cultural and intercultural issues, classroom teaching, clinical legal education, academic support, international legal exchanges, and alternative dispute resolution. The 2007 Chicago conference included a special session for court translators, sessions on Legal Spanish and Legal French, and roundtable discussions on teaching in China, the Middle East, the former Soviet Union, and Latin America. The 2007 conference in Chicago drew attendees and presenters from all across the United States and from countries as widespread as Belarus, Brazil, Canada, Japan, Mexico, Singapore, and Spain.

In addition to attendees expected from the United States, Canada, Asia, and Europe, the 2008 Global Legal Skills Conference in Mexico is expected to include many attendees from law schools in Mexico and Central America. The conference presents excellent networking opportunities for those who are interested in teaching abroad, for those who are interested in international legal education, and for those who want to learn how international and foreign teaching methods can improve teaching in the domestic classroom. Proposals on comparative and international law topics are also invited. The conference is expected to be well attended and a wide variety of proposals are invited.

Proposals for possible panel or individual presentations may be submitted until October 10, 2007. There is no particular format required for proposals. Send proposals to the conference co-chair, Prof. Mark E. Wojcik, The John Marshall Law School, 315 S. Plymouth Court, Chicago, IL 60604 USA, or by email to


June 19, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, June 18, 2007

LWI Writers' Workshop

Writers_workshop This photo was taken Tuesday, June 12th, at the 2007 LWI Writers’ Workshop, at the Chautauqua Park in Boulder, Colorado.

Click on the photo to enlarge it, and you will see (left to right): Debby McGregor (IU-Indy), Steve Johansen (Lewis & Clark), Joan Magat (Duke), Sheila Rodriguez (Camden-Rutgers), K.K. Duvivier (Denver), Dorothy Bisbee (Suffolk), Ursula Weigold (Cornell), David Thompson (Denver), Chris Rideout (Seattle), Linda Edwards (Mercer), Atiba Ellis (Howard), Jill Ramsfield (Hawaii), and Ken Chestek (IU-Indy). Not pictured  workshop participants were Kristin Gerdy (BYU), Jason Cohen (Camden-Rutgers), and Michael Higdon (UNLV).

The workshop lasted three days, and gave 12 writers the opportunity to work on their scholarship with 4 facilitators in small groups. The event is sponsored annually by the Legal Writing Institute.

hat tip:  Prof. Ken Chestek, Indiana University School of Law--Indianapolis


June 18, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Sunday, June 17, 2007

ALWD conference

The ALWD conference ended last night with fajitas and elephant-viewing at the Denver Zoo.  Prior to that event, we focused our attention on serious discussions about legal writing, program administration, and legal educaton.

Saturday's schedule featured plenary sessions with Judith Wegner speaking on "On Educating Lawyers:  Preparation for the Profession of Law."  Her talk at the ALWD conference was her first formal presentation relating to the publication of the Carnegie Foundation's new book, "Educating Lawyers:  Preparation for the Profession of Law."

At lunch, Peter Joy spoke on "Best Practices for Educating Lawyers," and Pauline Schneider spoke on "Current and Future Issues Important to Legal Education."

All three speakers invited discussion and questions about their talks, and those questions demonstrated the conference participants' passion for teaching and concern about traditional legal education--concern not always similarly reflected across and within their faculties. 

More on the conference to come . ..


June 17, 2007 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)