August 28, 2008
A random Thursday night Note
I've now been teaching law school for 5 years (starting my sixth). I practiced law for 14 before then, and still do some legal work, which I must admit I enjoy and it keeps me up to date on the real world. But there are things about practice now that have changed, or which seem to have changed if my memory remains a valid indicator of how things were "back then."
"Back then" we often did things without a writing. I'd agree to an extension if someone called, and that was that. Things are written now, more often than not. It's as if we'd double cross our opponent unless they had a blood-oath letter on it. Not sure that's a good thing.
Language, to get to the topic here, seems to be more malleable than it was "back then." I read many of the cases I blog about and think, "surely you, judge, don't REALLY think that's what the legislature meant," and yet the courts so hold. Maybe it's me, but sometimes it seems words are grayer now than they were 10 years ago. Again, don't trust my memory on that point. That malleability isn't a good thing, I suggest, since it leads to uncertainty, which increases litigation which favors now one, but, of course, the lawyers.
Anyhow, it's been a slow news week, so I thought I'd just ramble for a minute. Now to listen to Obama, if, at my age, I can stay up that late.
August 26, 2008
Conference Announcement - Belfast October 2008
Presuming to Interpret: Basic Principles of Lawin Stautory Interpretation, will be held on October 10 to 12, 2008 in Belfast, Ireland. It's sponsored by the Statute Law Society and will feature sessions on comparative interpretation and other interseting issues. The brochure is here.
Ninth Circuit Issues Contextual Opinion on Bankruptcy Act § 363(f)(5)
In Clear Channel, Inc. v. Knupfer, __ F.3d __ (9th Cir. July 18, 2008), the court issued a fairly thoughtful analysis of § 363(f)(5) and related provisions, including an interesting discussion of the textual history of the statute as well as Professor John Manning's views on textualism