How Appealing

Thursday, October 30, 2008

“Why Those ‘Other’ Federal Courts Are So Important In This Election: There is considerable opportunity for the next president to shape the legal landscape through appointments to the 13 federal appellate courts.” Alexander Wohl has this essay online today at The American Prospect.

Posted at 11:32 PM by Howard Bashman

Available online from Mike Scarcella reports that “Federal Circuit Restricts Patent Protection of Business Methods; Court rules that methods or processes can’t be patented unless they are tied to a machine or involve a physical transformation.”

And Shannon P. Duffy reports that “Lawyer Asks Federal Appeals Court to Revive Pa. Anti-Immigration Law; Case is described as the first major court challenge to a growing trend of local laws focusing on immigration concerns.”

Posted at 11:25 PM by Howard Bashman

“Navy judge refuses to re-sentence Bin Laden driver; A judge has spurned a Pentagon prosecutor’s request to revisit the 66-month sentence of Osama bin Laden’s driver on grounds he didn’t have authority to grant credit for time serve”: Carol Rosenberg of The Miami Herald has this news update.

Posted at 8:45 PM by Howard Bashman

“US jury convicts son of ex-Liberian president”: The Associated Press provides a report that begins, “A federal jury on Thursday convicted the son of former Liberian President Charles Taylor in the first case brought under a 1994 U.S. law allowing prosecution for torture and atrocities committed overseas.”

And Jay Weaver of The Miami Herald has a news update headlined “Miami jury convicts ex-Liberian leader’s son in torture case.”

Posted at 8:40 PM by Howard Bashman

“Might vulgarity be quite proper?” This afternoon at “SCOTUSblog,” Lyle Denniston has a post that begins, “Unless Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr., intervenes, some of the argument in the Supreme Court chamber next Tuesday morning may sound at times like a typical conversation in a seventh grade boys’ restroom — the uninhibited use of four-letter words.”

Posted at 4:35 PM by Howard Bashman

“Court limits ‘business method’ patents”: The Associated Press provides a report that begins, “A federal appeals court on Thursday ruled against a man trying to patent a business idea, a decision with far-ranging implications for the financial services and high-tech industries, which have major players on both sides of the issue.”

My earlier coverage of today’s en banc Federal Circuit ruling appears at this link.

Posted at 4:28 PM by Howard Bashman

“Panel says ex-judge Nottingham ‘may have lied'”: The Rocky Mountain News provides an update that begins, “Former U.S. District Court Judge Edward W. Nottingham may have lied to investigators about using his court-issued computer to access pornography, a special committee of the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals determined. The finding is revealed in an order issued this morning dismissing all complaints against Nottingham, one day after his resignation took effect.”

The Denver Post provides a news update headlined “Complaints dismissed against former Judge Nottingham.”

And Denver’s NBC News affiliate provides a report headlined “Special Committee: Nottingham may have made false statements.”

In connection with posting online this order, the web site of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit today contains a statement that “The Judicial Council of the Tenth Circuit issued the following final order terminating the proceedings involving Judge Nottingham as unnecessary in light of his full resignation, effective yesterday.” Another apparently related order posted online today can be accessed here.

Posted at 4:22 PM by Howard Bashman

“The preposition’s the thing, court rules; Court applies grammar rules to void deadly conduct conviction”: Today in The Austin American-Statesman, Chuck Lindell has an article that begins, “The law, it turns out, can be a harrowing preposition. Delivering a grammar lesson and playfully misquoting Shakespeare, the state’s top criminal court Wednesday threw out the deadly conduct conviction of a Brazos County man who shot his hallway wall while fighting his twin brother in 2002.”

Yesterday’s ruling of the Texas Court of Criminal Appeals consisted of a majority opinion and a concurring opinion.

Posted at 1:30 PM by Howard Bashman

En banc U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit decides what constitutes a “new and useful process” for purposes of patent eligibility: You can access today’s 132-page ruling in In re Bilski at this link. Twelve judges participated in the ruling. Nine joined in the majority opinion, while the three remaining judges each issued separate dissenting opinions. The case has been viewed as exceptionally important because it involves the patentability of business methods.

Joe Palazzolo of Legal Times covered the en banc oral argument in an article headlined “Judges Ask for More Concrete Patent Test; Federal Circuit argument over business method test answers few questions.”

Posted at 11:30 AM by Howard Bashman

“Ecuador choses new Supreme Court by lottery”: According to this report from The Associated Press, even the lottery’s winners aren’t happy about the method of their selection.

Posted at 11:10 AM by Howard Bashman

“Video-game ban considered by appeals court”: Today in The San Francisco Chronicle, Bob Egelko has an article that begins, “A state lawyer tried Wednesday to revive California’s ban on selling violent video games to minors by arguing, to an apparently skeptical federal appeals court, that mayhem should be judged by the same obscenity standards as explicit sex.”

And The Associated Press reports that “Court weighs Calif. law on violent video games.”

The Ninth Circuit included a short description of the case in a recent news release titled “Ninth Circuit Plans Special Sitting at McGeorge School of Law.”

Posted at 10:03 AM by Howard Bashman

“FDA staff, White House disagreed on drug lawsuits, papers show; Waxman releases documents showing that regulators tried to guard injured patients’ right to sue as the Bush administration pushed to shield drug makers; The Supreme Court takes up the issue Monday”: David G. Savage has this article today in The Los Angeles Times.

Posted at 9:54 AM by Howard Bashman

“Gay married couples face legal limbo if Prop. 8 passes; Experts see a period of ‘legal chaos’ on the issue; A challenge to existing marriages would raise novel questions, so no one is certain how courts would rule”: Maura Dolan and Jessica Garrison have this article today in The Los Angeles Times.

Posted at 9:50 AM by Howard Bashman

“Bin Laden propagandist smiles as jury sees his film; A Pentagon prosecutor presented a grisly al Qaeda recruiting video as evidence in Guantanamo trial of Osama bin Laden’s ‘media man'”: Carol Rosenberg has this article today in The Miami Herald.

Posted at 9:22 AM by Howard Bashman

“Psychiatrist: Nichols angry, not deluded; Apology shows suspect not insane, witness testifies.” This article appears today in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Posted at 9:18 AM by Howard Bashman

“The Times has misspelled her name at least two dozen times since 1980; this is the first correction the paper has published.” The New York Times today contains a “For the Record” correction that states, “An article in some editions on Wednesday about Fordham University’s plan to give an ethics prize to Supreme Court Justice Stephen G. Breyer misspelled the surname of another Supreme Court justice who received the award in 2001. She is Ruth Bader Ginsburg, not Ginsberg. The Times has misspelled her name at least two dozen times since 1980; this is the first correction the paper has published.”

Posted at 9:14 AM by Howard Bashman

“Joyce trial continues”: The Erie (Pa.) Times-News today contains an article that begins, “William Burt, a claims specialist with State Farm insurance, told jurors he approved a $50,000 settlement with former state Superior Court Judge Michael T. Joyce based on Joyce’s description of his injuries and on what Joyce’s medical providers said in a 3-inch stack of medical records.”

Posted at 9:00 AM by Howard Bashman

“Nottingham officially off the bench”: Denver’s NBC News affiliate provides a report that begins, “Judge Edward Nottingham’s resignation became official Wednesday, making him the first federal judge nationwide in the last five years to step down in disgrace and under investigation.”

The Louisville Courier-Journal reported yesterday that “Louisville native is chief federal court judge in Colorado.”

And online at The Denver Post’s web site, Law Professor Carl Tobias has an essay entitled “Restoring resources to the U.S. District Court.”

Posted at 8:55 AM by Howard Bashman

“The Lasting Legacy of a Supreme Court Nomination: The Next President Could Achieve Dramatic Change on Supreme Court.” ABC News correspondent Jan Crawford Greenburg provides this report.

Posted at 8:45 AM by Howard Bashman

“Governor ‘outraged’ over lawyer dispute”: The Providence (R.I.) Journal today contains an article that begins, “Governor Carcieri last night blasted the Charlestown Town Council for refusing to go along with his plan to have a prominent attorney represent the state in a landmark case before the U.S. Supreme Court that will ultimately decide who will control 31 acres of Narragansett Indian land in Charlestown.”

And last night at “SCOTUSblog,” Lyle Denniston had a post titled “Jockeying for the podium.”

Posted at 8:35 AM by Howard Bashman

“Restore fairness to the judiciary”: Today in The Boston Globe, Michael S. Greco and Patricia M. Wald have an op-ed that begins, “On Nov. 4 voters will elect not only a president for four years – but also hundreds of federal judges for decades to come. The Bush administration has appointed too many judges with partisan political loyalties who have failed to adequately protect citizens’ freedoms.”

Posted at 8:27 AM by Howard Bashman

“When the Police Go Through Your Email: Quirk of Search Law Sets Off Alarm Bells.” Dionne Searcey has this article today in The Wall Street Journal.

Posted at 8:17 AM by Howard Bashman

“U.S. appellate court hears cases at McGeorge; Lawyers argue video game and prison cases”: Denny Walsh has this article today in The Sacramento Bee.

Posted at 8:15 AM by Howard Bashman

“Tiny drug label raises big issue; Lawsuit: Are drugmakers shielded from state laws by FDA approval?” This article appears today in USA Today.

Posted at 8:05 AM by Howard Bashman

“Are Different Abortion Methods Morally Distinguishable? The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit Hears Richmond Med. Center v. Herring.” Sherry F. Colb has this essay online at FindLaw.

Posted at 8:02 AM by Howard Bashman

The Philadelphia Phillies have won the 2008 World Series! My son and I were back at Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia on Wednesday evening to watch the resumption of game five. Tonight was not only somewhat colder and much drier than the first part of game five on Monday night, but the outcome was also far more satisfying. Here’s hoping that the Phillies will not need to wait another twenty-eight years before winning another World Series.

Congratulations to the Tampa Bay Rays for that team’s amazing season and for making this a World Series to remember.

You can access the box score for game five at this link, while wraps can be accessed here, here, and here.

Posted at 12:18 AM by Howard Bashman