The Year in Law, from The Green Bag

Green Bag 2I’m still chortling over the heartburn created on the left by George Mason University’s coup of naming its law school after Antonin Scalia, especially since I am certain that Virginia’s squalid partisan governor and raging Clintonite Terry McAwful wanted to prevent it, but couldn’t.

The Scalia Law School at George Mason University also happens to publish the most interesting and worthwhile law review in the nation—the Green Bag. I made note of the Green Bag once before here, but in light of the new Scalia nomenclature, it’s worth a second helping from the Green Bag’s 2016 Almanac and Reader, which offers highlights from the real world of law that you won’t hear about in the Harvard or Yale law reviews. My favorite section is “A Year of Lowering the Bar,” compiled by one M. Kevin Underhill of the law firm Shook, Hardy & Bacon. (Yes, Mr. Underhill and the law firm are real.)

November 14, 2014: The Kansas Supreme Court votes unanimously to disbar Dennis Hawver for his incompetent representation of a defendant in a capital case. Hawver had argued, among other things, that “the real killer” should be executed for his crime, an argument he conceded did not help his client since he made it during the penalty phase. The court apparently was not swayed by Hawver’s decision to dress up as Thomas Jefferson for the disbarment hearing.

December 2, 2014: The House of Representatives votes unanimously to stop paying Social Security benefits to former Nazis. This follows an AP report that the U.S. is still paying at least four such persons as the result of an understanding by which they left the country voluntarily rather than being expelled. Not only did 435 representatives vote to stop paying the Nazis, 433 of them signed on to sponsor the bill.

September 10: In a ruling that surprises no one, or possibly just one person, the Nevada Supreme Court again rejects an appeal by Orenthal James Simpson. Simpson, who won the Heisman Trophy and was a pro football star before not murdering his wife and another person, was convicted of some nonsense involving sports memorabilia and has been in jail ever since.

October 14: Resolving a dispute arising out of a love triangle at the London Zoo, a judge holds that the zoo’s former meerkat expert must compensate a monkey handler the injured in a fight over a llama keeper. The meerkat expert claimed that the monkey handler attacked her first, but the judge finds otherwise.

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