Article on Cultural Property

HistoryNet has an article on the topic of cultural property and who owns it. The article, The War Over Plunder: Who Owns Art Stolen in War?, addresses some of the same topics I addressed in my comment for the Chicago Journal of International Law at the Law School of the University of Chicago, Keeping the Barbarians Outside the Gate: Toward a Comprehensive Agreement Protecting Cultural Property Internationally, 9 Chi. J. Int’l L. 627 (2009), so I thought I would mention it here.

Moving, the Bar, and Other Craziness

I haven’t been posting very often, since we just took finals, are trying to get ready to move, are studying for the bar, had to sublet our apartment, and have to graduate, still.

Finals: done! They went well enough – each of us ended up reasonably happy with the quarter, especially since the only thing on the line at this point was doing well enough to graduate (i.e., not failing anything, which is not a particularly high bar).

Moving: a huge pain. Shocking, I know. It will be happening, though, in less than two weeks. At that point, we become Texans indefinitely. We’re looking forward to being moved, not so much to moving

Bar prep: a huger pain. After one week, we have covered the introductory material, constitutional law, and contracts. We have a couple hundred flashcards, have already answered around two hundred test questions each, and have nineteen subjects left to cover, not to mention several practice tests (and probably another couple thousand individual questions) to take. So. Much. Fun.

Graduation: parents arrive in less than a week and things get crazy for a few days with all the events.

Life is busy. Feel free to drop me a line, especially if it’s because you’re in Chicago or Houston and want to catch up before or after the move.

Shifting Gears: Are entrepreneurs crazy idiots?

My Entrepreneurship seminar instructor asks, “Are entrepreneurs crazy idiots?” His answer is, “Not necessarily, but some of them are.” It’s basically a risk vs. rewards calculus – if you have little to lose and much to gain, you probably should take the plunge, but if that’s not you, you probably should not. I think that sounds right – I co-founded two businesses after college, and it was the right time – I had little debt and few expenses, so an abject failure was not likely to upend my life too badly. Fortunately, Topsail Consulting is still alive, after more than 5.5 years, and Safe At Hand turns four this month. I may not own or be involved in either, anymore, but it’s nice to know they didn’t fail out of the gate. The point, however, is this: there’s a right time for such efforts and a wrong time; be sure you know which time it is, and act accordingly.

Chicago’s Internet Ban

The law school has banned (rendered impossible) internet access in classrooms, starting with my last quarter there, as reported here. This is very frustrating, because there are, in fact, legitimate reasons for using internet access during class. I confess to occasionally using it to check news, etc., but I also use in-class internet daily to access the Chalk site for a given class, download cases from Westlaw, research confusing concepts, IM about class (i.e., to get notes on something I missed), or otherwise… learn the law. That’s in classes like torts, property, and federal jurisdiction, not to mention, say, e-commerce law.

I am sure internet access in class is being abused more than it is being used wisely, but this seems both an unnecessary and unreasonable first step to remedying any problems that situation is creating.

Thoughts?

U.S. News Rankings

The 2008 U.S. News rankings of law schools leaked, today, as a number of websites reported. See, for example, Abovethelaw.com. One of the major points people are talking about is that Penn and Chicago, still tied, dropped to seventh, while the University of California at Berkeley (formerly Boalt Hall) jumped to sixth. Meanwhile, Michigan and Virginia continued their unjustified slides, while Northwestern climbed into a tie with those schools for ninth.

Now, the U.S. News rankings have been subjected to a lot of criticism elsewhere, but the results this year make even less sense than usual. For deconstructions of the rankings (in general and this year), see Brian Leiter’s Open Letter to Other Law Bloggers, Concurring Opinions, or Jim Lindgren’s post on the Volokh Conspiracy.

I’m not a fan of the U.S. News rankings, but it seemed appropriate to at least mention them on here.

2 BR Apartment for Lease or Sublease

If you know me in real life, you know my wife and I are moving to Houston after graduation. This means we have a great 2 BR Apartment for lease or sublease in Hyde Park. It has a lake view, a lot of building amenities, and is generally a good place to be. Follow the link for details!

Admiralty

To my incredible shock and amazement, I am not failing out of law school because of my performance in Admiralty, last quarter. After muddling through one of the strangest exams I’ve ever seen, I fully expected the worst grade of my law school career, yet I actually did well. Not complaining!

Take Action: MDU Communications

Regents Park residents: Please send the following email message to info@mduc.com:

I live in Regents Park in Chicago, a building where you provide cable internet access. Our connection is pathetically slow — worse than dial-up, in fact — and has been since your company began providing service on February 1. Please remedy this situation, immediately.

Sincerely,
[YOUR NAME]

MDU says they are “considering” raising our bandwidth to levels comparable to dial-up and they are “monitoring” the situation. If you want a change, send the above message — you can do that with one click — and call the following numbers every day until things change:
Regents Park: 773-288-5050
MDU: 866-286-9638

UPDATE: several people have expressed some confusion about this, but it was MDI, not MDU, which used to provide access at Regents. The companies are unrelated.

LAWIKI (unofficial University of Chicago Wiki) goes online

My friend William has created LAWIKI, a wiki accumulating information on the University of Chicago Law School. Check it out.

Corporations, Admiralty, and dealmaking

I have posted my info from Professor Henderson’s Corporations online – contact me for the address.

If you have an Admiralty outline (preferably for Schmidt, though anyone will do), please let me know!