October 27, 2010 Comments Off
Limewire is dead, and the RIAA killed it.
Ok, ok. I know. The music industry has no interest in preventing child pornography, and theirs is a purely capitalist endeavor. They merely want to maximize their profits, and the secondary effects are of no interest to them. But when the effect of this is analyzed in criminal justice circles, the collateral consequences are enormous.
October 25, 2010 § 1 Comment
As if I need more justification for my legal practice area, a close friend sent me this little nugget.
A man who is good enough to shed his blood for the country is good enough to be given a square deal afterwards.–Teddy Roosevelt
October 21, 2010 Comments Off
A potpourri of thoughts regarding the military policy of Don’t Ask/Don’t Tell (DADT) that was eliminated reinstated repealed partially-reinstated stayed. I can’t figure out where it is now. I think it is still in effect, but I’m not quite sure.
I agree with half of the policy. The Don’t Ask part is completely appropriate and consistent with how our government should generally treat its citizens. A person’s sexual orientation is none of their damn business. As far as the last half, I have no use for the threat of losing one’s job for revealing one’s preferred sexuality.
Which brings me to the topics du jour…
October 19, 2010 Comments Off
It’s like MAD TV was reading the mind of every Criminal Defense Lawyer.
And then, later this morning, I discovered this:
October 15, 2010 § 2 Comments
Thanks to Scott Greenfield, I am ashamed to say that I have knowledge of the new Suffolk County, New York animal cruelty registry. This is a new, public list in Suffolk County that denotes anyone convicted of an animal cruelty violation. He began posting about it here and continued with an update here.
Scott’s disgust for this law is immediately apparent early in his opening salvo.
October 14, 2010 Comments Off
I was going to let the USA Today article about Colonel Robert Morris go, but it will remain stuck in my craw until I write this. It saddens me when the adage “we accuse, you lose” becomes such a motivating factor for prosecutors and accusers.
Colonel Morris faced prosecution by civilian federal courts after a military investigation cleared him of wrongdoing. All of this occurred because the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) muckity mucks were pissed-off. They, in their infinite wisdom, believed that their perspective was more sound, intelligent, wise, and legally correct than that of Major General John LeMoyne.
October 14, 2010 Comments Off
While killing time on Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri, I drove through the post enjoying the fall colors. Owing to the fact that the post deserves its name “Lost in the Woods,” the fall colors are abundant.
At one point, I found myself driving along a road next to the barracks (single soldier housing) utilized primarily by the 4th Maneuver Enhancement Brigade, a support unit for the 1st Infantry Division. I received a call from a client, so I stopped on the side of the road and took the call on my smartphone. When the call was finished, I looked at my phone to see a multitude of available WiFi hotspots radiating from the barracks.
I know from my experience with WiFi hotspots that you can give your router a particular name or go with the factory settings. From my observation, the former is far more popular than the latter. I transcribed what I saw on my handy legal pad.
As I scanned through the dozens of names, I noticed a pattern. In fact, not a pattern, but a story. It is a story about soldiers getting along in their barracks, communal-living situation. It is a story of love, comraderie, and tension.
Here is that story.
October 14, 2010 Comments Off
Time for another potpourri of things that pique my interest. Here are a hat-trick of things in my head–from the Hasan Trial to stumbling drunk through NYC.
Hasan, A Lesson in Being Careful, Very Careful
According to USA Today, it is anticipated to last up to 6 weeks. Be mindful that the Article 32 is an investigation. The hearing is merely a piece of the process. Essentially, the Colonel presiding over the Article 32 “investigates” the matter completely to determine whether reasonable grounds exist to move forward to a court-martial. This will be long, excruciatingly thorough, and anticlimactic.
Most Article 32 hearings last one day. This will be different because the death penalty is in play. Parties on all sides will show an amazing degree of care.
When the Army is careful about things, they go all-out. As an example, consider mowing a lawn. When you mow your lawn, you probably wear a t-shirt, shorts, and old shoes. Now, go to Ft. Leonard Wood and observe basic trainees mowing a lawn. They are forced to wear full Army Combat Uniform, hearing protection, eye protection, gloves, camelbak for hydration, a helmet, and even an occasional flak vest. For all I know, they may even wear a condom–just to be extra safe.
Update: As I wrote this, I read that Hasan’s attorneys requested a one month continuance. They may return this week to discuss their need for a delay. Ah, the excitement.
I can hardly contain myself.
October 5, 2010 § 2 Comments
This is a warm and fuzzy post. So, for all those individuals whose blood boils because of my words, take a break for a day.
I realize that many of my posts express great disdain for actions of certain commands, commanders, and purported military leaders, and I feel it necessary to balance my negative view with some of the unlimited positive views and memories I have of soldiers and military leadership.
A few weeks ago, I wrote a post talking about an injustice done to a young Sergeant at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri. In it, I talked about the command’s inability (or unwillingness) to understand his situation, and their insistence upon subjecting him to the meatgrinder of court-martial.
In response to that post, several individuals wrote me and/or posted comments expressing both support and disdain. Several of the messages came from current and former Noncommissioned Officers (various flavors of the Sergeant ranks, abbreviated NCO) expressing support for the young man in question and bile for the command that failed to do their job. Some were younger NCOs who juxtaposed this over their experiences and those of their close comrades. One was from a former First Sergeant (pay grade E-8), now a lawyer and Public Defender. He, particularly, felt strongly for the young Sergeant in my story, and he lamented the failure of the leadership that was charged to support the young man. Reading his words rekindled strong memories of those NCOs who’ve been close to me.
It threw this maxim into sharp relief: There is nothing more beautiful and inspiring than a Noncommissioned Officer doing their job well.
Three examples come to mind.
October 4, 2010 § 1 Comment
What is an azimuth check?
When someone is navigating unknown territory using a compass, they often will check the it to make sure that they are going in the correct direction (the correct azimuth). That is an azimuth check, and it is something I did frequently (and literally) as an Infantryman while on patrol. Since leaving that life, I find myself continuing to do so on a figurative level as I navigate various paths in life.
Is it a bit cheesy? Perhaps. Is it appropriate for a weekly potpourri post? Sure.
One Video, 2 Issues
I found this video completely by accident while perusing news about the Ft. Lewis soldiers accused of murder while in Afghanistan. When I began watching it, the first thing that caught my eye was the extremely well-rehearsed and staged interrogation. For years, we CDLs have lamented the fact that interrogations were not videotaped despite the fact that technology made it possible and extremely cheap.