Ever since Edward Snowden told us all about the NSA’s rampant spying on Americans, I’ve been meaning to convert Windypundit to an encrypted site, and I think I finally did it. If all is working, you should be seeing “https:” in front of “” up there in the address bar. (You might not see the […]

Ten Years of Fuckery

Someone named Payson just left a comment on a very old blog post. It starts this way: Hello, happy 2015. I have never heard of this website but out of rage I googled “sprint is a fucking piece of shit” and this came up. I don’t blog and I rarely leave comments on anything. However, […]

Some Speculation About the Google Truth Machine

Google recently announced they are researching the use of estimations of trustworthiness of websites to help prioritize results returned from search requests. This excites people who hope that pseudoscience and crazy conspiracy theories will get less attention, but it upsets people who are worried that the results will be biased: “I worry about this issue […]

The Future of Net Neutrality?

So, I hear the FCC is going to give us net neutrality: For the stuff that matters to us most, as an online community: the order bans paid prioritization, throttling and blocking. That means that outright blocking of content, slowing of transmissions, and the creation of so-called “fast lanes” available on a pay-to-play basis are […]

Who Should Control Women’s Sexual Desire?

Sprout Pharmaceutical is again asking for FDA approval for flibanserin, a pill that they say will help women experiencing low levels of sexual desire. In a New York Times op-ed, sex educator Emily Nagoski is skeptical: But the biggest problem with the drug — and with the F.D.A.’s consideration of it — is that its […]

Random Thoughts About Hillary Clinton’s Email

Hillary Clinton is taking some heat for using her own private email account for her State Department email. I haven’t been following the story very closely, but I have a few random thoughts: I keep hearing that she turned over 55,000 pages of email. Pages? Who measures email in pages? People who use email either […]

The Crime You Dare Not Stop

I’ve always thought that “possession” was an odd type of crime. Legal possession is such a passive concept. It doesn’t seem right to even call it a behavior. I’m pretty sure you can be guilty of possessing contraband even when you are literally asleep in bed. That just doesn’t sound harmful enough to justify punishment. […]

Racism Detected In Ferguson

New York Times reporter Matt Apuzzo says that the Justice Department’s investigation into the Ferguson, Missouri police has found extensive racial problems: Police officers in Ferguson, Mo., have routinely violated the constitutional rights of the city’s black residents, the Justice Department has concluded in a scathing report that accuses the officers of using excessive force […]

The Tyranny of the Well-Meaning

Jack Marshall has proclaimed yesterday “Remember What Drugs Cost Society Day” in honor of actor and comedian John Belushi, who died of a drug overdose in 1982. It’s worthwhile to remember the dead, and it’s important not to forget that recreational drug use can lead to tragedies. Had Jack left it at that, I wouldn’t […]

It’s Probably More of a Dingy Gray…

When I read Spencer Ackerman’s story in the Guardian about a Chicago Police “black site” right here in the city — where CPD supposedly keeps people in secret to interrogate them without access to a lawyer — I was skeptical. Scott Greenfield is too: How is it possible that this off-the-books facility existed for so […]

Return to the Planet of Reasonable Doubt

Over at a public defender, Gideon has posted his second attempt to create a jury instruction for the meaning of “reasonable doubt,” based on feedback he got from his first attempt, which has a lot of interesting comments. The discussion is far too technical for me to contribute to, for reasons that Scott Greenfield spells […]

Reviewing the Charges Against the Bronx Defenders

Professor Jonathan Oberman from the Cardozo School of Law has a great opinion piece in the New York Law Journal about the two lawyers who were forced to resign as a result of the Bronx Defenders’ “Hands Up” kerfuffle. These lawyers are smart, committed and hardworking, and have earned their clients’, their community’s, and this […]

Why Are Grand Juries So Secret?

I’ve been trying to understand why grand jury secrecy works the way it does, and there are parts of it that just don’t make sense to me. At a fundamental level, the idea of the government telling people there’s stuff they can never, ever talk about just doesn’t seem right. Our right to free speech […]

The Bronx Defenders Get Some “Corrective Action”

A resolution of sorts has arrived at the Bronx Defenders, with lawyers Kumar Rao and Ryan Napoli both resigning from the firm as a consequence of the controversy over their involvement in the “Hands Up” rap video. News reports say that Executive Director Robin Steinberg has been suspended for 60 days without pay, and that […]

A Very Good Point About the “Hands Up” Controversy From Radley Balko

In his article about the Bronx Defenders’ involvement with the “Hands Up” rap video, Radley Balko makes explicit something I had in the back of my mind when I wrote my post, but that I couldn’t quite articulate: In the Bronx Defenders, we have group that knows how to work the system. It has irreplaceable […]