The Wrong Terminator

So there’s another Terminator film in the works, scheduled for next summer. I want it to be awesome, but I’m not expecting much. From what I gather, the impetus to make the film was that the company that made the last one went belly up and somebody ended up with the rights and figured they’d […]

Two Cheers for the Secret Service [Updated]

Am I the only one who thought the U.S. Secret Service did a pretty good job of handling the guy who jumped the fence and ran for the front door? I’m especially appalled at the suggestion that snipers should have shot him after he jumped the fence. It’s reported that the only weapon on him […]

An Awkward Moment in the Apple Encryption Debate

So a couple of days ago I was explaining why Orin Kerr was wrong about Apple’s new policy of rendering themselves unable to encrypt customers’ iPhones, and in passing I linked with some disdain to a piece by former FBI Assistant Director Ronald T. Hosko, who was claiming, of course, that the new policy would […]

The People’s Climate Change

I’ve been trying to explain to my science-oriented friends who complain about climate change denial that a lot of people who have doubts about global warming are not so much anti-science as they are suspicious of scientific claims coming from people with an ideological agenda. Imagine for a moment that your least favorite right-wing pundits […]

Orin Kerr’s Dangerous Thinking

Apple has announced that with the new iOS 8 release they are no longer able to comply with law enforcement warrants to decrypt the contents of iPhones and iPads. On devices running iOS 8, your personal data such as photos, messages (including attachments), email, contacts, call history, iTunes content, notes, and reminders is placed under the protection of […]

Scattershot: Dating, Cops Behaving Badly, NSA, and Some Lucky People

Random shots around the web: Alli Reed posts the worst dating profile ever on OkCupid and proves, as you might suspect, that horny men will hit anything. Stephen Foster thinks it should be illegal to take pictures of people if you plan to have dirty thoughts about them later, or something. Rob Hustle explains what […]

Step Back From the Line of Fire, Batman

Like, I think, most people, I first heard Junip’s mesmerizing song “Line of Fire” in the promo for the final episode of Breaking Bad: Sometime afterward, I decided to check YouTube to see if there was an official video for the song. I found it here, but along the way I also found something far […]

If Only the Paperwork

Over at Addicting Info, Jameson Parker complains that, as he puts it in the headline, “NRA Argues People Should Be Allowed To Lie On Gun Registration Forms, Defeating The Whole Purpose.” This arose out of a criminal case decided by the Supreme Court a few months ago, where Bruce Abramski bought a gun on behalf […]

Bargaining Power 101

Scott Greenfield posted a story a while back about a conversation he had with a biglaw lawyer who was trying to refer a client on a criminal matter. The biglaw guy apparently wanted Scott to commit to negotiating a deal for the client without going to trial. He didn’t even think it was necessary for […]

Sloppy Renewal Plans for Obamacare?

I used to work on healthcare insurance enrollment systems. This is a bad sign for the next Obamacare open enrollment period: People will be renewing at the same time that others are enrolling for the first time, starting a week and a half before Thanksgiving, on Nov. 15. To ensure that they have a new […]

The Extractive Economy of St. Louis County

Radley Balko finally published the story he was working on in St. Louis County. It’s an amazing piece of work, detailing numerous examples of the abusive relationship between the suburban communities and their residents. When the officer showed up, Bolden filled with dread. “He was really nice and polite at first,” Bolden says. “But once […]

A Note to All My Nude Readers

So, if I’m following the story right, it appears that someone managed to hack into a bunch of cell phones or iCloud accounts or something belonging to celebrities and find a bunch of nude photos, which they then apparently dumped on the internet. I haven’t looked at any of these photos because (1) I already […]

Undercover Colors Under Fire

Have you heard about the idea for nail polish called Undercover Colors that can be used to detect so-called “date rape drugs” in drinks? It seems to be just a concept for now, but the idea is that a woman having drinks with a date could discretely dip a fingernail into her drink, and the […]

WordPress Jetpack Comments — WTF?

WordPress’s Jetpack plugin is a nice collection of features for bloggers. I host my blog on a server I pay for instead of on the big WordPress.com cluster because I appreciate the extra flexibility, but by using Jetpack, I can also get some of the more powerful cluster-based features, like improved search and uptime monitoring. […]

Ferguson Fatigue

It seems fatigue has set in with the protests in Ferguson, Missouri, following the fatal shooting of Michael Brown by Officer Darren Wilson. I’ve been following the protests and the police response every night on Twitter since the shooting, and it’s been riveting. I keep telling myself to ignore it for a while, and for […]

Ferguson a Week Later

After a pretty good Thursday night, things got tense on Friday. Cops were guarding some stores, but they were attacked by a few of the protesters and several officers were injured. The police then retreated to a perimeter, which resulted in a situation eerily reminiscent of the 1992 L.A. riots, when the police withdrew from […]

Ferguson Turns On a Dime

I tried, I really did. When I first heard about the shooting of Michael Brown by a Ferguson, Missouri police officer, I tried to give them the benefit of the doubt. A lot of police shootings are perfectly legitimate, stopping bad people from doing bad things. Beyond that, there are cases where the victim didn’t […]

#Ferguson

The news out of Ferguson, Missouri has had me riveted to Twitter. St. Louis Alderman Antonio French has been tweeting and posting Vine videos from Ferguson for days, and Wesley Lowery from the Washington Post has been tweeting regularly and he’s got an article up. If you haven’t been following the story, Dara Lind at […]

Another Cop Shoots Another Black Kid

I hate this kind of story. Reportedly an as yet unnamed police officer in the St. Louis suburb of Ferguson, Missouri has shot and killed an unarmed 18-year-old black kid named Michael Brown. Area residents gathered in the street, there was shouting, police assembled to try to keep order, there was a bit of a […]

Is The Legal Field Ready for CSO?

A couple of days ago, Scott Greenfield was writing about some of the complexities of federal sentencing, when a commenter named Jake proposed a crazy solution: Was there ever a task in the courtroom more ripe for automation? Well, yes, there’s tons of administrative crap that can be, or has been, automated. However, Jake had […]

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