An “Important Strengthening” of Religious Freedom: Temple Recommends in the European Court of Human Rights

October 13, 2010

Freedom of contract, religious autonomy and the Mormon temple recommend prevailed recently in The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR)[1] as the Court rendered its judgment in the case of Obst v. Germany (application no. 425/03). More specifically, the ECHR found that Germany had not violated Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights (right to respect for private and family life) when Germany’s highest court, the Federal Constitutional Court, had ultimately upheld Michael Obst’s 1993 dismissal without notice by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from his employment as Public Affairs Director for the Europe Area after he had confessed to committing adultery. Read the rest of this entry »


A (Secular) Turkish Delight

July 27, 2010

Any general arguments against the safeguards provided to all religions by the maintenance of a secular public sphere should take into account whether it is better to live as a Christian in Saudi Arabia or Turkey. Read the rest of this entry »


Winds of Change at JRCLS?

March 10, 2010

Is the JRCLS mobilizing to become a more political force? Read the rest of this entry »


Criminal Possession of a . . . Snowball?!?

March 10, 2010

According to the NY Daily News, four buddies are “facing a year in jail for criminal possession of a weapon – a snowball that hit an off-duty transit cop.” Granted, some of these boys have been in trouble before, and, according to the cop at least, the boys chased him down and pelted him with snowballs. But the boys claim they only hit him with one errant snowball, after which he pulled a gun! I guess it is a lucky thing he did not shoot them. I, for one, am not so sure I want such a jumpy police officer on the street…

I wonder if the Second Amendment includes within the right to bear arms a right to bear snowballs? Supreme Court- get ready to grant certiorari!! :)


The Fuzzy Line Between Corporate Teambuilding and Waterboarding

February 29, 2008

I found Wednesday’s Salt Lake Tribune article about a Provo motivational coaching business’s technique at corporate teambuilding to be a bit shocking but still had to laugh out of a sense of schadenfreude. Read the rest of this entry »


Sign of the Times

February 27, 2008

“. . . . and when the night came they slept upon their [blackberries].” (compare Ether 15:20)

In my line of work, I periodically — and these days more often than previously — find myself sleeping with my blackberry under my pillow. Is this a harbinger of the imminent collapse of our civilization?


My Brother’s Keeper: Good Neighbor or Criminal?

November 30, 2007

Some might call him a heroic brother’s keeper, others a wild vigilante. Whatever the case may be, this neighbor in Houston, Texas may be charged with a crime for blasting away two intruders of his neighbor’s home a few weeks ago, testing the limits of a new Texas law likely to be one of the most tolerant state allowances of deadly force in protection of oneself, one’s property, and arguably the property of one’s neighbor. Read the rest of this entry »


Bulletproof Teflon Patent Infringers

November 28, 2007

Imagine an entity that receives far more patents from the U.S. PTO than any related entity in the country. An entity that has generated at least $500 million in patent royalties over the last five years. One that often uses the courts, routinely alleging patent infringement as a plaintiff and settling against such giants as Genentech for $200 million, Monsanto for over $100 million, and Microsoft for $30 million settlement, to name but a few. And yet, this entity cannot itself be sued or pursued for patent infringement. Some would say this sounds like a typical “patent troll,” which does not actually make, use, or sell anything (and thus is not likely to be sued for patent infringement) but seeks only to “monetize” its patent portfolio by forcing legitimate practitioners of the technology to pay licensing fees. Read the rest of this entry »


RE: Long-Lost Musty Metaphors of Yesteryear

October 22, 2007

Today I reminded a colleague of the oft-quoted maxim in patent law that “a patent may not, like a ‘nose of wax,’ be twisted one way to avoid anticipation [finding of invalidity because something in the prior art already did what the patent describes] and another to find infringement.” He just looked at me blankly and asked “what in the world is a ‘nose of wax’?!?” and suggested that I must be making that up or misquoting something. Read the rest of this entry »


Bloggertizing

September 29, 2006

Should lawyers’ blogs be classified as advertizing?  I have wondered about that before, but never thought a state would consider passing a regulation to that effect.   A committee of New York State’s Administrative Board of Courts has not only suggested such a regulation but also has proposed "extend[ing] court jurisdiction to out-of-state legal advertising that appears in New York."  This has prompted a London-based lawyer to ask, "Could I be disciplined by New York state because there are pay-per-click adverts on my weblog or seminars, and these are interpreted as acts which ‘solicit legal services’?"  Interesting issue.  Would LDS-themed blogs written by lawyers that sometimes talk about legal issues and how they apply to the Church or Church history be subject to this regulation because they can be read in New York?  Would Nate Oman, Kaimi, Steve Evans, Kevin Barney, ECS, Guy Murray, DMI Dave, A. Greenwood and other lawyers be subject to discipline for our participation on LDS blogs?


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